BILL MOYERS: Welcome. We haven’t even turned the page on the controversy over contraceptives, health care and religious freedom, when another thorny one comes into play involving personal conscience and public health. A flurry of stories over the past few days caught my eye, just after I had watched a movie that inspires more than passing interest in their subject.

NURSE IN CONTAGION: Does she have a history of seizures?



BILL MOYERS: Steven Soderbergh’s recent film Contagion is the most plausible experience of a global pandemic plague you’re likely to see until the real thing strikes. Stark, beautiful in its own terrifying way, and all too believable, the story tracks the swift progress of a deadly airborne virus…from Hong Kong to Minneapolis...Tokyo to London…from a handful of peanuts to a credit card to the cough of strangers on a subway. Rarely does a film issue such an inescapable invitation to think, “It could happen. That could be us. What would I do?”

Perhaps because the movie had invaded my head, for several days I kept coming across stories in the news about contagious disease. And the conflict between religious beliefs and immunization. Nothing new here about the basics: All fifty states require some specific vaccinations for kids. Yet all of them grant exemptions for medical reasons – say, for a child with cancer. Almost all of them grant religious exemptions. And 20 states allow exemptions for personal, moral, or other beliefs.

Some parents still fear a link between vaccinations and autism, a possibility science has largely debunked. Some parents just want to be in charge of what’s put into their children’s bodies.

And some parents just don’t trust science, period. So, you can see there are many loopholes. But now seven states are considering legislation to make it even easier for mothers and fathers to spare their children from vaccinations, especially on religious grounds.

In Oregon, according to a story by Jennifer Anderson in The Portland Tribune, the number of kindergartners with religious exemptions is up from 3.7 percent to 5.6 percent in just four years, and continuing to rise. This has public health officials clicking their calculators and keeping their eye on what’s called “herd immunity.” A certain number of any population group needs to have been vaccinated to maintain the ability of the whole population – “the herd” – to resist the spread of a disease. Ms. Anderson offers the example of what in my day was called “the German measles” – rubella. All it takes are five unvaccinated kids in a class of 25 for the herd immunity to break down, creating an opportunity for the disease to spread to younger siblings and to other medically vulnerable people who can’t be vaccinated. If you were traveling to Europe between 2009 and 2011, you may remember warnings about the huge outbreak of measles there – brought on by a “failure to vaccinate susceptible populations.”

Here in the U.S., several recent outbreaks of measles, have been traced to pockets of unvaccinated children in states that allow personal belief exemptions. The Reuters news service reports 13 confirmed cases of measles in central Indiana. Two of them were people who showed up for the Super Bowl in Indianapolis. Patriot and Giants fans back east have been alerted. So far, no news is good news.

But this is serious business, made more so by complacency. My generation remembers when measles killed. Killed at as many as 500 people a year before we started vaccinating against them in 1963. My wife and I both lost grandparents in the great flu pandemic of 1918 that killed as many as forty million globally. Our generation was also stalked by small pox, polio, and whooping cough before there were vaccinations. In a country where few remember those diseases, it’s easy to think, “What’s to worry?” But as the movie so forcefully and hauntingly reminds us, the earth is now flat. Seven billion people live on it, and our human herd moves on a conveyer belt of constant mobility, so that a virus can travel as swiftly as a voice from one cell phone to another. When and if a contagion strikes, we can’t count on divine intervention to spare us. That’s when you want a darn good scientist in a research lab. We’ll need all the help we can get from knowledge and her offspring.

For all its many qualities, including some fine acting, “Contagion” was frozen out of the Oscars—not a single nomination. In fact, none of my favorites were nominated. Nonetheless, let’s go to the movies for some insights on our politics today, because when it comes to storytelling, Hollywood and Washington are co-dependents. Political conspiracies, skullduggery, and infighting have long provided solid plotlines for moviemakers. In turn, politicians try to embrace the values that movies depict as the noblest virtues of the American character: selfless courage, patriotism, sincerity and compassion. Both know that movie entertainment informs our image of what leaders should be but at the very same time capably and handily distracts us from certain grim truths.

So we’ve chosen this moment to talk with Neal Gabler, the historian of culture and film who expertly interprets how movies reflect our society and politics. Here in New York, Neal Gabler is an indispensable Saturday night guide to the movies on our flagship public station WNET/Thirteen.

Bill Moyers Essay: Are Immunization Exemptions Fair to All?

Is it fair for parents to opt out of vaccinations for their children on the basis of religion or philosophy? In his trademark essay series, Bill Moyers weighs the value of personal liberty versus the greater public health.

Related Links

The Portland Tribune: Religious exemptions tilt immunization’s balance, February 16, 2010

CNN: Retracted autism study an ‘elaborate fraud,’ British journal finds, January 5, 2011

Reuters: Indiana has 13 cases of measles as vaccinations decline, February 15, 2012

Centers for Disease Control: Access the complete list of vaccine-preventable diseases, the recommended 2012 immunization shot schedule and risks associated with vaccines.

Council on Foreign Relations: Learn about the exemption statutes in your state as well as recent outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases around the globe.

Frontline: “The Vaccine War” (2010)


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  • Sarah

    Dear Bill Moyers,
    I have enormous respect for your programs and am dismayed by this essay.  In response I’ll leave my comment with two things.  First is a request to any/every one to please find the vaccine research and information that is clear of pharmaceutical company (makers of vaccines) influence.  One can begin with  or perhaps for more information about this topic.
    Second is a plea to invest in building natural immunity through proper nutrition, exercise, clear mind practices, etc.  There are lots of resources for this.  Here’s one that is encyclopedic:
    With appreciation,

  • Ibpokin

    “Personal belief” is not always “religious”.   Most people I know who have gone this route, do so for health reasons.  My objection to vaccinations is medical.   Many vaccinations are given “in bulk” (multiples in one injection) without any research as to how these might affect an infant.  Just plain old intuition would tell you that this can’t possibly be a good thing.   I would object wholeheartedly until there is ample research, and research completed by someone OTHER THAN the company who makes the vaccines!

    I usually find myself in agreeance with you.   However, your forte is not medical and you clearly are unaware of this whole movement away from “bulk” vaccines and the overwhelming influence that the pharmaceutical industry has into scaring us into the belief that we have to be immunized for everything.

    This may have nothing to do with it, but if you look at cultures or sub-groups of people (Amish, Menonites, cultures around the world who do not get the mass immunizations), there is almost NO incidence of childhood cancers, childhood asthmas or autism.    Hmmmmm……

  • Martin Olesh

    Bill, I have always admired you and what you are doing here is admirable, but to trying to reason with these anti-vaccine people is like trying to reason with a flat-earther. Lyndon Johnson’s favorite verse–Come now let us reason together–falls on deaf ears with them.

  • Stephanie

    Or some families don’t trust the role of big pharma and the FDA review process. The number of vaccines have exploded and I do worry about the effect it has on young developing immune systems. Many seem “rushed to market” because there is a captive (mandated) audience waiting if they can get them approved. It worries me when I see vaccines required and then pulled due to side effects (like the rotovirus one several years ago when my kids were little).  I also found it interesting how diseases like chicken pox used to be considered “a right of passage” but as soon as the vaccination became available, all of a sudden it was a killer.

    I don’t “not trust science”…I just know that sometimes it takes science a little while to catch up. Another reason I am more questioning of the new vaccines, where we don’t have any idea of the long term effects. I selectively vaccinated my kids and delayed many until they were older (I breastfed and my kids were home with me and not in day care). 

    This was not an easy decision as I do understand the risks (both individually and as a society). What I find interesting is that my concerns are usually portrayed as “unfounded” or “unproven” but I don’t think it really is as black and white as all that. I am college educated, a progressive liberal in my political views and there was enough there to make me pause. This was not a knee-jerk “don’t trust the government” decision for me by any means.

  • aabrown1971

     Mercola is a quack. Please educate yourself in science based medicine. It is disheartening to see so much misinformation and ignorance in these comments so far.

  • aabrown1971

    9 reasons to completely ignore Joe Mercola and Natural News…

  • aabrown1971

    Excellent essay, Bill. Here is a great link for your viewers/listeners who may have been pulled in by unscientific propaganda :

  • Abzarndt

    I agree with you completely and have done very much the same as you did with my one child.  I don’t believe that constantly adding yet another new vaccine to the list of vaccines children receive is wise, nor thoroughly researched and tested.  I think the combination of all these vaccines in one small human has not been tested.  So many vaccines being given to babies in their first year or two of life appears to be due more to the fact that doctors hope to get them while they are still coming in for regular well-baby check-ups than to any hard evidence of this being the safest and most effective practice.  It is not a black and white issue, and not all who object are religious fanatics or anti-science.  Rather, I would like to see some in-depth research done on the overall effects of the combination of vaccines being given to very young children before requiring more and more of them and without using our children as guinea pigs.

  • Linda Rolf

    The reason people like you can reject vaccinations is that medical advances in the West have all but eliminated diseases that were deadly and debilitating 100 years ago like small pox and polio.   Kind of ironic, right?  

  • Anonymous

    I’m surprised, Mr. Moyers – you know better. By mid-20th century, well before the introduction of the vaccines, measles, for instance, was, in essence, a benign disease. Its mortality rate had fallen from its peak in the early 1900’s by over 95%.  Yet the vaccine industry, through media repetition, has convinced the American public that the vaccine gets the credit for the decline, and that the disease is akin to the plague.

    Less known is the fact that the year after the introduction of the polio vaccine the CDC changed the diagnostic parameters of the disease so significantly as to reduce the subsequent number of diagnosed cases of paralytic polio by over two-thirds, with just the stroke of a pen. The issue is thoroughly discussed in the following link to the transcript of a panel held by the Illinois Medical Society, which met to discuss the problems with the ongoing vaccination campaign. You’ll notice they also address the fact that many cases of meningitis had until that time been diagnosed as non-paralytic polio, for various reasons, and no longer were. There is also ample evidence that cases of non-paralytic polio were thenceforth diagnosed as meningitis.  The total de facto decline in the incidence of polio resulting from the diagnostic changes, then, could easily be 90%. This is hardly disease eradication, but, rather, deception; parlour trickery:

    The other side of the coin is, indeed, the efficacy of the immune system, which matures from infancy by natural exposure to diseases, and is protected during that time by the antibodies passed to the baby through the breast milk of the mother, who typically is exposed to the same pathogens. Nature never exposes an infant to multiple antigens simultaneously – and certainly not to accompanying toxins such as mercury, aluminum and formaldehyde – and certainly not through injection.

    Another critical factor is that vaccines, like diseases, can seriously harm and kill – it’s a matter of record for anyone to see. Most problematic is, despite assurances from the vaccine industry that vaccine damage is “extremely rare”, we simply don’t know the true extent of the injuries, for it is well known that not all serious adverse reactions are reported. Since the industry determines vaccine safety by comparing ostensible benefits to risks, and it is the totality of actual adverse reactions that comprise the true risk, there really is no valid way to determine safety.

    Educate before you vaccinate. Informed consent is a precious ethical medical tenet, and the status quo – misinformation and missing information – is unacceptable, and should be worrisome for any parent.

  • Bahiminin Benoit Dah

    And polio vaccine was the vector used to introduce the AIDS pandemic in Africa: the UN was giving shot of infected vaccine with the pretext of fighting polio. And then the disease started to spread from those area to the rest of the continent. They blamed it on innocent monkeys that in fact were contaminated in lab as guinea pig and then released in the wild later.  Before that, the small pox vaccine was used to introduce polio.

  • 4thdimensionfound

    Moyers, you’ve overstepped.  Vaccines have been pushed on kids with little or no proof of their necessity nor efficacy, and parents who are convinced (and who knows their children better than parents?) that their children were harmed by vaccines no longer have recourse because the pharmaceutical companies cannot be held liable under law.  Since when is a Hepatitis B vaccine for a newborn a public health issue?  Are you really sure that you have the right to dictate that my 8 year old son get an HPV vaccine?  Do you think – REALLY – that the pharmaceutical companies, the FDA and the powerful AMA lobby are so benevolent that they have our best interests at heart?

    You are not a scientist.  What you propose is no less than fascism.  It’s not even a moral argument.  How dare you – or those who make millions directly or indirectly off of vaccination programs – attempt to dictate what I or anyone put in my child’s body because of your BELIEF – not backed by hard, proven science, that they are beneficial.  This – FROM THE CDC WEBSITE – is what you would dictate we are forced under penalty of law to pump into tiny little bodies:

    Common substances found in vaccines include:Antibiotics � prevents the growth of germs (bacteria) invaccine cultures.
    Formaldehyde � inactivates bacterial products for toxoidvaccines and kills unwanted viruses and bacteria that might be found in vaccine-producing cultures.
    Thimerosal � a preservative used to prevent vaccines from spoiling. In 1999, the Federal Government asked vaccine manufacturers to eliminate or reduce the use of Thimerosal due to its mercury containment. All routinely recommended pediatric vaccines are now manufactured as either Thimerosal free or with only trace amounts (less than 0.5 micrograms per dose).
    Monosodium glutamate (MSG) and 2-phenoxy-ethanol � used to stabilize vaccines and help them remain unchanged even in the presence of forces such as: heat, light, acidity, humidity, etc. MSG is also found in many foods, (i.e. Asian foods and flavor enhancers).
    Aluminum � helps the vaccines stimulate production of antibodies to fight off diseases and aid other substances in their action.
    Egg protein � found in vaccines prepared using chick embryos. Ordinarily, persons who are able to eat egg products can safely receive these vaccines.

  • 4thdimensionfound

    There is at least as much scientific evidence to back the claims of “anti-vaccine people,” as you call them, as there is to back the claims of vaccination proponents.  It is not a black and white issue; don’t you think you should at least maybe do a little bit of investigation before you buy the claims made by people who stand to profit in the millions from selling vaccines?  Or is it just easier to just call people “flat-earthers” who don’t believe everything they are told.

  • 4thdimensionfound

    You’re right – unfortunately there are purveyors of snake oil on BOTH sides of the argument.

  • aabrown1971

     Show me your peer reviewed proof of snake oil in the science based community.

  • Martin Olesh

     There is a history of vaccination that goes back over two hundred years, long before Big Pharma, as the anti-vaccine people call it, existed. Without vaccination the civilized world would still be plagued by smallpox, diphtheria, polio and countless other diseases that have been practically wiped out because of vaccination. If you choose to believe in conspiracy theories, that is your choice but history is clear on the good that vaccination has done for the health of humanity.

  • Joan Panek

    I, too, wonder about  so many vaccines being given at the same time to very little babies, BUT, like Bill, I am old enough to say that I remember what it was like to have suffered through having the measles, mumps, German measles, and Chicken pox.  All of us kids got those diseases. I had three friends who had polio, and were left with some resultant permanent damage to arms or legs.  Maybe death rates went down in the mid-20th century as another person commented here, but  everyone got the diseases, and it was awful being sick and a worry for our parents.

    Sitting here is 2012 when you don’t have to take care of your child going through all those diseases, it must be difficult to imagine how scary it was.  I cannot tell you that there are no side effects of vaccination that affect some kids (peanuts affect some kids) but I do not want to see those days of no vaccination return when virtually ALL  children had to experience such illnesses and the potentially life-long effects of them.

    We kids had pretty robust immune systems in the 1940’s and 1950’s because we had access to unadulterated food, hardly any junk food, and played outside in the sunshine and  yes, dirt, and walked everywhere or rode our bikes.   But our immune systems were NO defense against the major childhood diseases. 

    I don’t know what the answer is, but I hope all those diseases are not coming back.  In the meantime,  I support vaccination.


    Once again, Mr. Moyers speaks the truth. 


    The scientific consensus on the OPV Aids hypothesis is disproven.

  • Anonymous

    I find some of the previous comments from those opposed to vaccines painful to read.  I realize that they are trying to be rational and that they believe in what they say, but as a pediatrician who has been in practice long enough (38 years) to see some of the terrible diseases vanquished by vaccines, to me the misinformation they put out is almost criminal.  

    It is obvious from some of their comments that they really do not understand how the immune system works.  While it is true that some of Mom’s antibodies may have been transferred to her infant while still in utero, they do deteriorate over time, and do not have the effect to stimulate the baby’s immune system to make additional.  And anything to which Mom has no immunity such as the latest flu to be circulating or whooping cough, or other things against which she has not been recently vaccinated, the new infant will not have any innate immunity.  And that immunity does not develop due to healthy feeding, exercising or clear mind practices, whatever the latter is.  Anyone, baby, child or adult develops immunity to things by being exposed to them.  When this foreign protein (virus or bacteria) enters the body, your body responds in a number of ways in an attempt to kill or neutralize the intruder.  And one of the ways is by starting to make antibodies specific to this particular infectious agent.  And unless the person has some inborn or acquired immune deficiency, these antibodies will work well.  However, it takes a while before the immune system has cranked up enough to put out a sufficient amount of these antibodies.  And in the meantime, the virus or bacteria, is multiplying and  attacking you, and some of the ones we now have vaccines for were extremely virulent and you might not have lived long enough to produce enough antibodies for protection.   Assuming you do survive, if that same infectious agent (antigen) comes knocking again, you may still have some circulating antibodies to start the fight immediately plus now your immune system has learned from the previous experience how to make the specific antibody and can start the process rapidly, stopping the disease before it gets a head start.  That is how one becomes immune to an infectious agent.  

    So do you want the first experience(s) (at times, particularly in the very young, more than one exposure to the antigen is needed to keep the ability to produce antibodies primed) to be from the disease agent itself, which might harm or kill you before your immune system is running at full speed, or would you prefer the initial exposure(s) to be from a vaccine made from a killed or attenuated organism?  I much prefer the latter, I’ll gladly put out my arm for Hepatitis A vaccine, Tdap, Hepatitis B vaccine, etc., rather than finding myself with any of those preventable diseases.    

    And I have looked at the studies of the various vaccines, in fact, back in the early days of practice, some of our patients even participated in some vaccine trials.  And of course they are done by the pharmaceutical company that is making the vaccine, how else would they be able to know the proper dosing to use.  But all the testing has to then be presented to the FDA before it is okayed for use.  

    And while I have worked always in a group practice, one which has grown larger over the years and which now has 10 pediatricians and 2 pediatric nurse practitioners, I have never seen a single case of anything more harmful than a sore arm or leg or at times a fever from any of the vaccines, while I have seen children who were extremely ill or who died due to some of the diseases for which we now have vaccines.  And thanks to these vaccines, many of my younger partners have never seen some of the diseases we old timers commonly saw.  

    I learned to put in chest tubes as an intern when one of my patients, a 6 wk old baby with whooping cough, would repeatedly blow out a “bleb” in his lungs, causing the lung to collapse due to the air leak.  He was in the ICU for weeks, needed more than a dozen chest tubes.  And he caught the disease from his mother.  It is now common practice for the OB’s to recommend Mom get Tdap before leaving the hospital, and we tell Dad the same thing – in order to protect the Newborn.

    When I was first in practice, there was no vaccine against a germ known as Hemophilus influenza, type B, which at that time was the number one cause of almost every single major bacterial infection a child under 5 yrs. might get.  And every year I would see maybe 2 or 3 cases of meningitis due to this dangerous germ and perhaps twice as many cases of epiglottitis – this germ having a predilection for the epiglottis, the little flap which covers your windpipe when you swallow to prevent you from aspirating.  With that illness, the epiglottis would swell up like a little red cherry, itself sealing off the airway and smothering the child.  Antibiotics could kill the germ, but not quickly enough to save the child, and so every child with epiglottitis would need an emergency trach.  It was a very frightening disease.  After the vaccine against this germ came out, even though the number of doctors in my practice has tripled, we have not had a single case of the disease.  To me, for a parent to refuse this vaccine for their child is akin to child abuse or negligence.  And I would not want to be in their shoes if their unvaccinated child were to come down with a case of meningitis or epiglottitis which they could have prevented.  I would be swamped in guilt watching my child suffer with something I could have easily prevented.  To me, the spread of the antivaccine propaganda is a crime.  I can assure you that there is not a single child or grandchild of any of the docs in my group who has not received all the childhood vaccines, and at the appropriate times.

  • aabrown1971

    Another excellent, scientific, and well sourced  site for good vaccine information:

  • aabrown1971

     Also, you don’t “build” immunity. Do you know what the diagnosis is when you have a “boosted” immune system? It’s “rheumatoid arthritis”.

  • Amy Peck

    Mr. Moyers, this is the first time in many, many years that I find myself in total disagreement with you. Read, read, read…you are NO stranger to the sordid world of backroom deals and vested interests. Surely you are not so naive as to believe that this syndrome is absent in the medical/pharma unholy alliance! I am a 62-year-old, college educated mother of three grown children, none of whom did I vaccinate. This decision was well-thought-out, after much research. I will defend it to my death, and hope that young parents of today will keep their crucial right to decide what substances are allowed into the precious, fragile bloodstreams of their babies.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t worry, I am not writing a reply to argue with you about your anti-vaccine stance, since you will “defend it to the death”, but I have to say, as my views are 180 degrees from yours and I feel every bit as strongly about them as you do, that I am happy that none of your 3 children acquired any of the serious illnesses for which they had no protection.  Some of the reason for that “luck”, however, might be credited to the fact that there was less chance of exposure with most of their fellow schoolmates likely being vaccinated.  Will never know.  And now they are adults and can decide for themselves.

    But the reason I am writing is to say that I was offended by your comments of backroom deals, and vested interests and the “unholy alliance” between doctors and big pharma.  If I or any physician was looking to get large kickbacks from the pharmaceutical companies, pediatrics is not the field one would pick.  I can assure you, that the reason that I and my colleagues argue for immunization of children is not based on $$$, but on our wish to see the diseases which are particularly dangerous and often deadly in the very young, to be completely wiped out.  The unfortunate consequence of these diseases being down, but not perhaps totally out, has given rise to a generation of young adults who have never seen these diseases (this includes my younger partners), things like Hemophilus influenza epiglottitis or pneumonia or meningitis.  They’ve never even seen a case of measles or probably mumps.  Even I have never seen a case of diphtheria and only one of tetanus, and that in an adult when I was in medical school, an adult who had let her immunizations lapse.  Nor do I ever want to.  But I fear I/we will, if more and more parents decide to not immunize.  

  • Rejk

    think it should be fully appreciated how very many shots children
    receive now. This is very stressful for children physically,
    emotionally, socially and effects the whole family. there should be
    better ways to immunize that reduce pain and discomfort of the
    immunization. Children’s pain is not taken seriously enough.Although I
    think it is in the interest of public health to immunize, it should also
    be acknowledged that we do not fully know the long term effects and side
    effects of immunizations.

  • Andrew Marshall

    Uhm…you do understand that Joe Mercola is a quack who’s pushing his own financial interest, right? How, exactly, is he separated from pharmaceutical companies.

    Also, please explain how it’s bad that pharmaceutical companies would rather prevent diseases through vaccination than provide treatments for them.

    Finally: NVIC is not a credible or balanced site, and its name is purely Orwellian.

  • Andrew Marshall

    It is absolutely untrue that there is little or no incidence of autism in the Amish community.

  • guest

    It is not the antigen that worries me, it is the other ingredients. Have you ever read the insert to a vaccine for a child? For every trial run there are many, many severe reactions. It is not black and white. Some children have serious allergies and compromised immune systems that should not be injected with antibiotics (like my daughter), egg proteins, MSG and Heavy metals. Anecdotal evidence IS scientific, IF it is reported. 

  • Andrew Marshall

    If there’s as much scientific evidence on the anti-vaccination side, show it. It hasn’t happened yet. In public health terms, it is very much a black and white issue.

    Don’t you think you should do a little bit of investigation before you buy the claims made by people who stand to profit from selling alternative, “natural,” and “homeopathic” remedies?

  • Andrew Marshall

    Please show peer-reviewed medical evidence of the negative impact of the recommended vaccine schedule on “young developing  immune systems”, especially as opposed to the impact of the literally thousands of antigens to which young developing immune systems are exposed naturally.

  • My2cents

    Does one have to be either FOR or AGAINST vaccines? Can’t someone question the number of vaccines given at one time, the current vaccine schedule, the possibility that their child might be allergic to one of the “other ingredients”, the possibility that a child has a compromised immune system, etc.? I think there is a large gray area in the vaccine debate that deserves credit. What of the parents with vaccine injured children? Should they be “swamped in guilt”? 

  • Bahiminin Benoit Dah

     You are a quack if you fail to understand that mercury, used as a preservative in vaccines, is a poison. This is a scientific fact well documented, that only ignorance would fail to see. People are not against vaccination. The vaccines have to be made safe otherwise Mercola’s way would be the only one to follow – his method is even the best option. There seems to be a conspiracy to create a “heathy” dumb population for the purpose of consumption, political control and large scale scientific experiments. Let people make their own choices. They will come to you if they really need your vaccines. In the meantime, you can vaccinate yourself to protect yourself from the non-vaccinated ones. That is called freedom of choice.
    About medical schools: they seem to be just a brain washing institution run by the pharmaceutical industry. The percent of smart and good doctors they produce let think that they really need a complete overhaul

  • Andrew Marshall

    Being reported does not make anecdotal evidence scientific. That statement reflects a serious misunderstanding of the scientific method. And no one’s saying that there aren’t medical contraindications to vaccination. They’re just not very common.

  • Andrew Marshall

    Since most of those questions reflect common antivaccination tropes, it’s hard to accept them at face value. There’s no evidence that the recommended vaccination schedule is harmful, and the question ignores the number of challenges to our immune systems that we endure every single day. The question about other ingredients ignores the dose-response relationship inherent to assessing toxicity. These are questions to which  antivaccinationists typically won’t accept science-based answers–or even logical ones.

    The incidence of actual vaccine injury  is extremely low. Of course there are sometimes medical contraindications–one of my children has an egg allergy and can’t tolerate most vaccines. The fact of a very limited number of actual vaccine injuries doesn’t undo the massive public health good that vaccination has demonstrated.

  • liam

    I completely agree with you AP.  Isn’t it interesting how professionals in the chiropractic and other fields such as homeopathy by a large margin do not immunize.

  • Beverlyxo3

    I am very surprised that your interview was very one sided, there are an outrageously more amount of shots given to children now since you were a child, if you do not put in the equation that this is not a result of pharmaceutical companies making billions of dollars, then you are naive. And falling to the outrageous fear tactics that have so much money behind it. It’s bad enough we are being told we are all depressed and need antidepressant, please don’t tell me that my small growing  infant needs shots, while her body is growing, talk about breast feeding and how that is the best immunity you can put in a child.Do you really know the science on this? Or are you just trusting the side you want to believe. I am very disappointed!,com_crossjoomlaarticlemanager/Itemid,509/aid,2191/view,crossjoomlaarticlemanager/

  • Anonymous

    The problem with the viewpoint Bill expresses is that it rests on a particular scientific model. There are other models of health and disease; to force everyone to live according to the dictates of the current scientific paradigm will not lead us forward into the future that we long for. Moreover, it is a violation, in principle, of personal freedom and dignity. When actions for the “public good” rest on limited scientific models, should not those who have found more effective means to maintain health be allowed to pursue them? (If you think the world of science is the open-minded pursuit of truth, think again. Dr. Rupert Sheldrake’s new book The Science of Delusion: Freeing the Spirit of Enquiry looks like it ably takes on this misunderstanding, though I’ve not yet read it.)
         Vaccines were a great advance when they were first discovered, so Bill understandably favors them. But times have changed. Big Pharma has taken over the medical world, including the development and distribution of vaccines. (For much more about this see the writings of Dr. Joseph Mercola, Certain segments of the population, such as the elderly, have now been frightened–and brainwashed–into believing that if they don’t get the latest flu vaccines they’re at severe risk of illness and death. In fact, sufficient doses of Vitamin D as a preventative health measure have been shown to be more effective than flu vaccines for both preventing flu and recovering from it if one falls ill. Significantly, most people who die from catching the flu die of pneumonia or its complications. The vaccine doesn’t help with that but Vitamin D does.                                                                                                  Bill would do better to expose the role of Big Pharma in the vaccine industry (would he dare?) and to seriously look at alternative means to prevent and recover from “killer diseases.” Until reasonably mainstream thinkers such as Bill are willing to expand beyond the limitations of their basic assumptions, those of us who have already abandoned the older paradigms of science and health end up being forced to live according to the standards of the still-existent herd mentality. Sure, we’re used to it. But isn’t it time for something new? What else is possible?                                                  

  • Beverlyxo3
  • americanmama

    You’ll defend it to the death? How ironic if you were to die of measles.

  • Amy Peck

    Um…sorry, Hon…I had measles in 1953 and got through it just fine, with rest and proper care from my mom, who was a nurse. Oh, and by the way, she was unvaccinated, as was her mom. Any more ad hominem attacks you’d like to send forth?

  • Yes Sale

    Possibility Pamela, excellent post!, I hope Bill takes note.

  • J T Lessard

    I made a conscious decision not to vaccinate in 1978. I had my last child in 2000 & felt even stronger about not vaccinating. I take her to a board-certified pediatric MD who doesn’t support vaccination nor the AMA model of treating illness. Certainly his views can not as easily be dismissed as  “flat-liner” or “quack,” which are labels attached to people who dare (to) buck the “scientific” system. There are many examples throughout history, of something once considered “scientific” that no longer is….as science is always growing & changing. 
    I admire Mr Moyers, but on this issue, I disagree. The verdict is not yet in. Dr Smith, a pediatrician now deceased, asked the question a long time ago, whether we were perhaps trading common childhood diseases (usually nothing more than an inconvenience) for the more serious & lifelong condition of autoimmune diseases, which were already on the increase when he penned those words. There are many brilliant & educated people from all genres who do not fall into step with the vaccination model of overcoming illness. They can not be dismissed.
    Vaccination is not the same thing as immunization either. The wordplay is a good method of indoctrination though. Many vaccines need boosters which many people don’t get. And, many who get sick, have been vaccinated. That fact is often conveniently left out though, when news is reported.
    People have an absolute right to refuse injections of foreign substances into their bodies or the bodies of their children. People have an absolute right to refuse a medical procedure which they choose not to subject themselves or their children. This includes knowing everything that is in our foods (labeling GMO’s) & being subjected to full body scans at the airport (or risk being groped.) The list is getting longer as to the ways in which our personal liberties are being assaulted. What better way to frame these assualts than to claim, “public health” or “protection from terrorists?!”

  • TS

    Vaccines do not protect you against disease.Your immune system does.Contrary to what people think and we are told vaccines are not a “magic bullet”.If a person’s immune system is not functioning to start with, a vaccine is USELESS.

  • Terri

    I question whether peer reviewed research is all that reliable:

  • Amaragrace

    Oh, Mr. Moyers…”The Earth is now flat.”? I’m afraid you’ve been suckered in by the govpHARMedical propaganda machine, hook, line & sinker *and* rod, reel & creel. Highly vaccinated populations have *always* been the infectious disease outbreak leaders. The US ranks 34th of 34 first world nations in infant mortality; we give 26 doses of vaccines in the first year, more than any other nation; nations that give fewer vaccinations have lower infant & child mortality rates, in perfectly descending order; 70% of SIDS deaths occur within 3 weeks of vaccination; 1 American child in 6 has a choronic neurologic or learning disorder, 1 in 9 is asthmatic, 1 in 96 is autistic…but the CDC won’t tell anyone these facts publically, they’re burried, needle-in-haystack fashion under several layers of obfuscation. The government, instead of working as the people’s watchdog, consistently cites vaccine-profiteer-generated “scientific” information that downplays & ignores the inherent risks and  exaggerates the theoretical benefits & historic & current lack of efficacy of vaccines & vaccinations. There is absolutely no active effort to track, document, or compile the true incidence of vaccine adverse reactions; VAERS is admittedly only capturing less than 10% of adverse events, Neither the government, the medical industry, and of course the manufacturers, who have zero liability for any of the carnage caused by their “unavoidably unsafe products” (Bruesewitz v Wyeth, 2011), nor the public has any idea of the true frequency of vaccine injuries, permanent damage & death rates from vaccines. The best “official (corporate) science” money can buy is what the public is force-fed, while researchers & doctors who bring forth the clear truth about  the discrepancies between vaccination theory & health outcomes are systematically silenced; that list of names is long, and growing. I’m so *incredibly disappointed* to learn that you’ve taken the position of the iatrogenecists. That Hollywood movie *was designed to create fear* and increase vaccine uptake! People are waking up en mass to the carnage that vaccination has been causing since it’s inception, because almost everyone now knows someone who has been maimed or killed by vaccines.  Science is a tool, just like a hammer; in the hands of someone with integrity the tool can create great benefits…in the hands of those devoted to an agenda without the integrity of conscience – the industry’s first responsibility is to maximize their shareholders monetary gains – this tool has created monumental Human tragedy in the name of wealth & profits. Wake up Mr. Moyers. Please.

  • Amaragrace

    Let me guess…the “official scientific consensus” was reached among the vaccine manufacturers & their profiteering supporters – the medical trade unions, the grant-hungry universities, the fee-loving regulatory FDA, the bedfellows at the CDC, the  MD & PhD “independant” pharma consultants. Did I omit anyone? Oh, right…the complicit corporate media. Corporate science is a magical thing in their hands…any results they want.

  • Eliza walbridge

    Mr Moyers, I have long been a fan of your excellent reporting.  I am surprised that the very person who reported the series “Medicine and the Mind” should be so taken in by the Big Pharma line on vaccinations.  Please do your homework and research the wholistic community and what they say about vaccinations.  There is plenty of evidence to show links between vaccines and many health issues.  There are many other alternatives.  Thank you for your otherwise thoughtful and articulate reporting.

  • Amaragrace

    I’ve done that research, Andrew. Natural & homeopathic remedies don’t contain neurotoxic metals specifically mercury and aluminum, designated carcinogens; blood brain barrier softening emulsifiers, animal viruses; genetically modified animal, viral, yeast, & bacterial DNA or proteins; Human diploid cell proteins or DNA; or sterilants. So yes, I’m *very* comfortable without those toxic soups being injected into my precious progeny.

    PS…please read this PhD physicist’s page on the “mercury-free” & “trace” mercury math…that’s some relevant science for you.

    And then, take a look at his Synergistic Toxicity page…lots more science there too.

    He’s just one scientist who’s looking at and revealing this issue…there are scores and perhaps hundreds around the world…they’re revealing the truth that the vaccine profiteers don’t want “the market” to know. The profiteer community just hasn’t admitted it publicly yet. It’s tragic that so many – doctors *indoctrinated* by the industry – are still in the dark of denial about this.

  • Amaragrace

    Disease Mortality Spontaneous Decline Graphs

    Obomsawin’s Vaccines Didn’t Save Us 

    2 centuries of Official Statistics 

    Health Sentinel’s  

    Graphical Evidence: Vaccination Did Not Save Populations – Data From Australia—data-from-australia.cfm

    additional vaccination historical statistics:


    • FACT : In the Philippines, the largest smallpox epidemic occurred between 1917 and 1919, in which there were 162,503 cases and 71,453 deaths. All cases were vaccinated. 21 

    • FACT : In England, smallpox vaccinations were made compulsory in 1853. Between 1863 and 1865, the population rose 7% and the death rate rose by 41%. Between 1870 and 1872, the population rose 9% and the death rate from smallpox rose 123%. 22 

    • FACT : Following the introduction of compulsory immunisation, the incidence of diphtheria increased by 30% in France, 55% in Hungary, 200% in Switzerland and 625% in Germany. In Sweden, diphtheria virtually disappeared without immunisation. 23   

    FACT : Germany began compulsory diphtheria vaccinations in 1939. After that country was thoroughly vaccinated, cases of the disease skyrocketed to 150,000. 24  France initially rejected diphtheria vaccinations because of the disasters she witnessed in other countries due to its use. But after the German occupation, France was forced into submitting to the shots. By 1943, cases of diphtheria in that country had soared to nearly 47,000. 25  At the same time in nearby Norway, which refused vaccinations, there were only 50 cases. 26                                                                                             (references indexed)

  • Amaragrace

    Please ruminate on this reasoning:
    Synoptic Overview: Issues ((Descrepancies)) In Immunization Theory and Practice 

    ~ Raymond Obomsawin PhD 

  • Babycakes874

    Historical data show that mortality rates declined considerable before vaccines were introduced. Better sewer systems, cleaner water, good hygiene, etc. are credited for the decline. Vaccines are a toxic government cocktail that have never been proven safe or effective. To force them on us for the ‘greater  good’ is not only dangerous, but criminal. Even the Supreme Court has stated vaccines are ‘unavoidably unsafe’. It has also been shown that outbreaks of pertussis, measles, etc. are occurring in the fully vaccinated, proving vaccines don’t protect as they’ve been promoted to do.

  • Amaragrace

    Show us that the Amish and Mononites, and those who don’t mass-vaccinate (including the Chicago  Home First medical practice), have rates of chronic diseases and disorders including autism comparable to those of the vaccinationist cultures, Mr. Marshall. Please…I haven’t been able to find those verifiable publicly documented statistics.

  • Amaragrace

    The immune system does in fact protect, TS, unless it’s been disrupted & rendered dysfunctional by vaccination, and here is a very good explanation of how that happens. Basically, it’s not prudent or wise to try & fool Mother Nature:

     (Series, Part 1 of 3)

    Vaccines and neonatal immune development

     May 2011’s_Desk/post/Vaccines_and_neonatal_immune_development/ 

    How a baby fights infection and develops the immune system  (2 of 3)'s_Desk/post/How_a_baby_fights_infection_and_develops_the_immune_system/ 

    Can vaccines become cranial and immunological cluster bombs? 

    ( Part 3 of 3 ) 

     May 2011's_Desk/post/Can_vaccines_become_cranial_and_immunological_cluster_bombs/

  • GDL

    The immune response in autism: a new frontier for autism research. Journal of Leukocyte Biology – University of California

    Is autism an autoimmune disease ? – UC Davis

    Immunity, neuroglia and neuroinfla­mmation in autism – Johns Hopkins

    Immune transcript­ome alteration­s in the temporal cortex of subjects with autism – Vanderbilt University

    The role of immune dysfunctio­n in the pathophysi­ology of autism – University of California

    Schizophre­nia and Autism: Both Shared and Disorder-S­pecific Pathogenes­is Via Perinatal Inflammati­on? – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology

    Dysregulat­ed innate immune responses in young children with autism spectrum disorders: their relationsh­ip to gastrointe­stinal symptoms and dietary interventi­on. – New Jersey Medical School

    Elevated immune response in the brain of autistic patients. – NY State Institute for Basic Research in Developmen­tal Disabiliti­es

    Cerebrospi­nal fluid insulin-li­ke growth factors IGF-1 and IGF-2 in infantile autism.- Kuopio University Central Hospital

    Levels of cerebrospi­nal fluid nerve-grow­th factor differ in infantile autism and Rett syndrome.
    University of Kuopio

    Plasma cytokine profiles in subjects with high-funct­ioning autism spectrum disorders.
    Hamamatsu University

    Cerebrospi­nal Fluid and Serum Markers of Inflammati­on in Autism – Kennedy Krieger Institute

    Immunologi­cal findings in autism – Jackson State University

    Decreased transformi­ng growth factor beta1 in autism: A potential link between immune dysregulat­ion and impairment in clinical behavioral outcomes – University of California at Davis

    Familial Clustering of Autoimmune Disorders and Evaluation of Medical Risk Factors in Autism – Johns Hopkins HospitalKe­nnedy Krieger Institute

    Th1- and Th2-like cytokines in CD4+ and CD8+ T cells in autism – University of California

    Activation of the Inflammato­ry Response System in Autism – University Center of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry­, Antwerp

    Elevated cytokine levels in children with autism spectrum disorder – Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

    Innate Immunity Associated with Inflammato­ry Responses and Cytokine Production against Common Dietary Proteins in Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Department of Pediatrics­, University of Minnesota

    Maternal autoimmune diseases, asthma and allergies, and childhood autism spectrum disorders: a case-contr­ol study.- Kaiser Foundation Research Institute, Kaiser Permanente

    Cytokines and the brain: implicatio­ns for clinical psychiatry­. – University of Michigan

    Immune system to brain signaling: neuropsych­opharmacol­ogical implicatio­ns.
    University Victor Segalen Bordeaux

    Brain-immu­ne interactio­ns and implicatio­ns in psychiatri­c disorders – National Institute of Mental Health

    Brief report: immune factors in autism: a critical review. – Tel-Aviv University

    Autism and the immune system. – University of Leijden, The Netherland­s

    Maternal infection: window on neuroimmun­e interactio­ns in fetal brain developmen­t and mental illness – California Institute of Technology

    Altered Gene Expression and Function of Peripheral Blood Natural Killer Cells in Children with Autism – University of California

    Application of Novel PCR-Based Methods for Detection, Quantitation, and Phylogenetic Characterization of Sutterella Species in Intestinal Biopsy Samples from Children with Autism and Gastrointestinal Disturbances
    Brent L. Williams, Mady Hornig, Tanmay Parekh, and W. Ian Lipkin

  • Golddlux

    “How, exactly, is he separated from pharmaceutical companies.”

    Perhaps because Dr. Mercola does not mandate his products.

  • GDL

    “eliminated diseases that were deadly and debilitating 100 years ago like small pox and polio”

    Citations please.

  • GDL


    Now that there is funny…..I don’t care who you are.

  • Golddlux

    That’s where Rule of Law comes in handy.

  • Amaragrace

    Here are nearly 600 published medical literature citatons linking vaccines with Human cellular, tissue, organ & system damage:

  • David Kennedy

    The government loses all it’s credibility when they do things like making it illegal to drink raw milk.  The FDA and CDC are not believeable anymore.  You can live in fear Bill.  I’ll take my chances.  These government people who force vaccinations are out of control.

  • Michelle

    Public health these days leaves much to be desired! We have more vaccinations today than years ago and the health of our children is deteriorating at lighting speed as well as the public in general. So how could vaccinations be good for the greater public health? I believe we should all have the right to opt out for whatever reason we choose whether its religious reasons or personal beliefs. Health is a choice and a responsibility. Not something offered in the form of toxins introduced by a needle. The fact that all liability has been removed from the vaccine manufacturers last year in a Supreme Court ruling should throw up a red flag to everyone.

  • Gary Wilson

    A tart Albrichism: “It’s not the overpowering invader we must fear but the weakened condition of the victim.”
    In consideration of that point of view, one might ask why, when a so-called infectious organism is “causing disease”, why doesn’t everyone exposed to the disease “catch” the disease?
    Plants being damaged by insects or being infected with a disease are growing in soil fertility too low or unbalanced for that plant. If that plant is a crop for animals or man, the nutritional value will be too low to help create a healthy animal or man. If the soil fertility is increased or balanced to meet the requirement of the plant, there is no need to be concerned about the “danger” posed by insects or disease and there will be  no need to “protect” the plant from competition from weeds. When that is realised, the crop will provided sufficient nutrition to be at least part of a nutritious diet for an animal or man.
    Weed sprays, insect sprays, fungicides, hybrid crops, GMO crops, disease resistant crops and vaccinations for animals and man are symptomatic treatments for problems caused by low or unbalance soil fertility. They don’t treat the cause, they just make money.

  • Trevor

    These anti-vaccination people are idiots.  Most probably have no idea what an iron lung is and have never seen anyone who crippled by polio, or someone horribly disfigured by smallpox.   There are not many of them around anymore, and most peope who suffred with these diseases are senior citizens because vaccination programs eradicated these horrible diseases many years ago.

    I nearly died with Chicken pox back in 1982.  I still have permanant scars from it on my face.  A decade later I was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease that the doctors think was brought on by the severe case of chicken pox ten years earlier.   Since then I have had two kidney transplants.  

    Now they have a vaccine for chicken pox.  If it had been available when I was a kid I would have been spared a life of disability.   Do your kids a favor, take them to get their  shots!  

  • Guest

    It is not illegal to drink raw milk.  It IS illegal to SELL raw milk in some states,  therefore it is illegal to sell raw milk across state lines in interstate commerce.. 

     There is nothing stopping you from buying it from a local dairy farmer  if you live in a state that allows the sale of raw milk.   There is also nothing preventing you from buying a small farm and keeping a Jersey cow on your property to provide raw milk for you and your family.

  • GradyLeeHoward

    A short essay was an inadequate way to address such a complex issue as vaccinations. My suspicion is that Bill (and Michael and Judith) were attempting to discuss a parallel medical issue to contraception in light of an alleged legal theory of religious and belief exceptions. 
    They may have expected that the eradication of disease categories with an epidemic history using mass innocculation would be sufficient to recommend contraception as an undisputed good now potentially denied because of minority superstition. But because they are older people with limited medical and pharmaceutical knowledge they stepped on the very IED they themselves were constructing. This is a great embarrassment for such a prestigious journalistic team, but if they will admit their misstep this can become a valuable learning experience for all concerned. This is one of those issues with at least “17 sides” Molly Ivins often talked about. Now Moyers&Company is obligated to address it in a far more comprehensive way as soon as possible. The alternative would be the loss of credibility on a variety of other issues.  Most of  us knew the contraception exemption on health insurance was a partisan and crackpot political ploy. But many more people are suspicious of medical system institutions. They have screwed us over almost as much as the big banks, have lied and killed people and even ruined our chance for affordable coverage. I really wonder what Moyers&Company was thinking when they made this dumb move. They have opened a delicious can of worms.

  • TS

     I did not say that your immune system does not protect you from disease…READ what I wrote…I said VACCINES do not protect you from disease your IMMUNE SYSTEM DOES.Unfortunately people think that vaccines are a magic bullet and and all you need is a shot in the arm and you are protected.While vaccines are supposed to trigger a prophylactic response, more often than not they trigger an anaphylactic response.Vaccines are merely tools to help the immune system do what it ssupposed to do.But as with any tool it may or may not function as it should.Because of how vaccines are made and administered…they fail.
    BTW I know all about how the immune system works.I don’t vaccinate my animals and have not had any vaccinations since I was a child(and those were few).

  • The Refusers

     Big profit in the vaccine market, big profit!
    Drug makers got doctors tight, in their pocket
    Every kid is a customer, can’t stop it, can’t block it
    School is a pharma ATM – their vaccine marketing department

    Vaccination Uber Alles!

    Listen to the Refusers’ song Vaccination Uber Alles

  • RMFrance

    It’s astonishing to read the comments here and see the responses against vaccination. First of all, I understand the opposition to BigPharma making a big profit and Government forcing us to do what is not in our best interest. But let’s stop a second and review what is true and what is an emotional “button push”.

    To begin with, unfortunately there has been a dramatic drop in the supply of vaccinations that we need, such as for seasonal influenza. This is because the production of vaccines is not profitable. Therefore, BigPharma has no interest in producing it. Without the vaccinations against flu, which changes every year, the susceptible population of older grandparents and sick relatives have a very good chance of not making it through the season. The CDC estimates about 36,000 a year will die from the flu.

    As far as government intervention, this is one place where government can effectively do what the private sector chooses not to. As stated above it’s not cost effective for businesses. But the actions really pay off. It wasn’t that long ago that people in the United States were dying from, or permanently disabled from, flu (1918, 1957), polio, small pox, pertussis (whooping cough), and yes, even measles. Through an effective public health campaign many of these diseases have been either eliminated or drastically reduced.

    If you choose to get your information about autism and vaccination from Hollywood, then that is your prerogative. However, the United States is regarded throughout the world for our advances in science and the scientists that produce that knowledge. It was not medical doctors who increased our life span from 35 years old in 1900 to 78 years old today, it was public health measures.  

  • Kris Homme

    C’mon Bill — vaccines are yet another issue in which you must look at the data yourself, rather than rely on “experts”.  The more you look, the worse it smells.  Please do your homework.  Here’s an introduction: 

  • Amaragrace

    I read what you wrote TS…I agreed with you…I posted supporting information…lots of it…you might want to read what I shared yourself…Just sayin’.

  • mikies

    Bill, you’ve just “jumped the shark”.   You watch a movie, read an article and that’s
    it.  That’s it?  That’s all you got? And you think you can write an informed opinion?

    Have you read Vaccine Epidemic: How Corporate Greed, [You
    know a little about that] Biased Science, and Coercive Government Threaten Our
    Human Rights, Our Health and Our Children?  

    Have you read: Callous Disregard-Autism and Vaccines—The Truth Behind a

    Have you read,  “The Age of Autism—Mercury, Medicine and a
    Manmade Epidemic? 

    Have you become that lazy?  Where’s that investigative journalist who used to believe “where’s there’s smoke, there’s usually fire”?   There’s been a fire burning for 15 years and you’ve willfully chosen to ignore the smoke; but you watch a movie and read an article an that’s all you got?   Shame on you Bill Moyers.  Shame on you


     Do you fly on planes? Are you not using this system of interconnected tubes to communicate? Etc.
    Science is a wonderful thing. It’s not perfect but I’ll take Science over a world without science A.N.Y.D.A.Y.

  • Littlelady80

    And If I had not vaccinated my two younger children they would have been SPARED a life with disabilities! Try brain damage caused by cardiac arrest after receiving a DTP shot  ( that was my daughter)and autism in my younger son combined with Tourette’s Syndrome and OCD months after receiving the very same shot!! If I had not given them that shot neither f them would be as they are today. You rarely hear about all the side effects just the severe ones as yours but they are out there and I would rather risk the possibility of getting the disease then knowing that I will have a reaction whether it be now or later as my immune system that was designed for immunity to disease no longer works because it was damaged by vaccines which science has yet to prove do anything for you in a positive sense. 

  • Towhee13

    For the good of the public health and our childrens health of course you should avoid vaccinations. They are nothing but poisonous cocktails with no end of nasty ingredients that have been proven to cause cancer and not even work in the first place. Vaccines are big pharmas nice, quiet way of insuring a constant flow of sick people for their prescription drugs and chemo therapies, all of which just poison you more.

  • Parula

    Over my dead body will they inject my family.

  • Dr. James Hogg

    Please do not lump all immunizations together or casually dismiss concerns about possible damage to children just because “science” has largely disproven a link with autism.

    Have you actually examined the evidence yourself? What studies were done, how were they done and for which immunizations?

    When my patients ask me about this admittedly emotional issue. I encourage them to do their own research and to use several sources of information. Many sources are biased one way or the other.

    Some things I ask my patients to consider:
    1. How likely is my child to be exposed to the disease? In the case of a disease like smallpox the likelihood is, effectively, zero in most of the world. For a disease like pertussis, the likelihood is much higher
    2. What would be the health risks if my child contracts the disease? For a disease like diptheria, tetanus or polio the consequences are much more serious than for diseases such as pertussis, chicken pox or flu.
    3. What is the likelihood that the vaccine will actually protect me or my child from the disease? There are more and more questions being raised, for instance, about the usefulness of the flu vaccine by organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
    4. What are the possible side effects of the vaccine and how serious are they? The pertussis vaccine, for instance, has a bad track record for brain damage in a small number of recipients. Flu vaccine history is rife with cases of severe reactions, some fatal.

    The question about whether or not to vaccinate is not black and white, good or bad. Every vaccination puts the individual system under stress, sometimes with serious morbidity or mortality. Vaccinations also save many people from crippling or fatal disease. 

    Some diseases are very dangerous and the vaccines have a reasonably good history regarding safety and effectiveness. Some diseases are much less dangerous and/or the vaccine has a history of poor effectiveness or higher morbidity/mortality.

    In general I love your reporting. In the case of immunization, however, I feel that you have only done half your job.

    Yours in Health,

    James Hogg, D.C., DIBAK

  • Drhogg

     Well put. Something I wish I’d added to my response on 2/26/12

  • Jtl0960

    Peer review, that’s rich. White coats are a section of Professional Society which absolutely REFUSES to police itself.

    Having been on the recieving end of their consensus of educated guesses (more than once) I find their Ivory Tower perspective sadly lacking.

    As long as they are contractually bound by HMOs, the emphasis shall always be on profit rather than True Science.

    One-size-fits-all medicine, with a helpful dose of “Better Living Through Chemistry”, ensures that the ENTIRE Health Care System continues to degrade.

    Continually focusing on the symptoms will do nothing to alleviate the advance of the disease: For Profit Healthcareitis.

  • Drhogg

     Thank your for back up you opinion with objective research. I’m marking and copying this page as a resource for my patients!

  • Drhogg

     Wow, good example of the wisdom of taking your time so to avoid the impression of illiteracy (my own that is) :-).

  • Drpatricialawler

    As a health care provider in Minnesota I acknowledge that this is an important issue. What is not acknowledged in this presentation, however, is that many parents and many clinicians have seen too many cases where children have had profound reactions to vaccines. These are frightening at the least, and life changing for the child and parent at the worse. We can not ignore that somehow, our vaccines, which are intended for good, are harming some children. Until the causes of these harmful and sometimes lethal events are determined the number of parents who abstain from vaccinations will will continue to rise because the risk of dying from a pandemic is perceived lower at this time than the perceived risk of illness/death from a known pathogen or epidemic. Some due abstain because of a religious belief but many parents use that clause to escape the vaccinations for other reasons.

    Your presentation, Bill, lacked your usual view of the complete picture. Simply stating that the connection between vaccinations and autism and other possible links has been debunked has not been  authoritatively established in many clinicians and parents’ minds.   Please take another look at this issue. Talk to parents who have personally experienced the heart breaking reality of injury from vaccination. This is such am important topic and I hope you can be part of the solution by presenting the complete story next time.

  • Busto

     No, actually it will be over your families dead bodies.

  • Busto

    Good lord! When the heck did all the Birchers start trolling Bill Moyers?

  • Twyla

    It’s not really accurate to say that your immune system was NO defense, as apparently you survived, and are even able to type coherent sentences.  I do understand your point that some people say our immune systems would be enough protection if we all just ate organic food and were breastfed etc., but many years ago there was no such thing as formula or vaccines or paper diapers or many of the pesticides we used today yet still lots of people died of infectious diseases.  So we have had to figure out ways to combat disease, including antibiotics, vaccines, clean water, flush toilets, and more.

    I’m not old enough to remember polio and smallpox, but I do remember measles, mumps, chicken pox, German measles, whooping cough, and flu.  Everyone I grew up with came down with these illnesses, and nobody I knew suffered lasting consequences.  The rate of many chronic conditions was much lower then, including autism, ADHD, bipolar, diabetes, asthma, peanut allergies and more.  

    We really need to accurately weigh the risks and benefits of vaccines and diseases.  IMO these days our health authorities exaggerate the risk of disease and deny the risks of vaccines without real in depth study of the impact of so many vaccines on developing immune, nervous, and digestive systems.

  • Twyla

    Actually, there is a surplus of flu vaccines.  Just a couple of articles found when googling “flu vaccine surplus”:

  • Theredtheron

    For you or anyone else who believes vaccines are a scam. Please do a google search on polio. As you will see, vaccines are as effective as the pope is catholic. Were it not for the polio vaccine, children would still be returning to school after their summer break to find out which of their classmates had been crippled or died over the summer. Ask your grandparents. Polio has been eradicated in the US and we are close to doing it in the world due to a vaccine. This is a fact. You can’t debate a fact.

    The basic science of antibodies is rather simple to understand and is not up for debate.

    P.S. The polio vaccine was given away for FREE when first developed by Dr. Robert Salk in the U.S.

  • Twyla

    And vaccines are very profitable.  I’m trying to find some articles I’ve read from pharma and mainstream magazines saying that pharma companies expect vaccine income to help make up for lost income from expiring patents on drugs.

    Here’s one, for example:
    “The once-sluggish vaccine industry is anything but these days…
    “Prevnar, Wyeth’s second-biggest seller, is the leader of the pack. This fast-growing vaccine, for the immunization of infants and toddlers against pneumonia, meningitis and infections of the ear and blood stream, totaled nearly $2 billion in 2006 sales, up 30 percent from 2005. And growth is accelerating, with first quarter sales of $617 million, a 43 percent surge from a year earlier…”

  • Twyla

    I notice that one of the “Related Links” is to the Frontline story “The Vaccine War”.  This was a terribly done story which presented only these two sides of the issues:
    – Doctors saying that diseases are dangerous and vaccines are good.
    – Parents saying that they don’t vaccinate.

    What about the thousands of parents who did vaccinate their children and have reported serious adverse reactions?  What about the thousands of parents and practitioners who are expressing legitimate concerns and questions about how we vaccinate, which go way beyond a black & white “Vaccines are good” or “Vaccines are bad” outlook?

    Dr. Jay Gordon and Dr. Robert Sears were both interviewed for this program, but their interviews were cut.  Dr. Gordon wrote about that here:

  • Theredtheron

    Give me a break! You clearly do not understand the importance of peer review in a self correcting scientific method. Do you really believe that every single grad student studying public health is “in on it?” I went to grad school and I don’t know anyone who was making big bucks by backing corporate conspiracies. We were there to try and rationally understand the world and hoped to make it a better place. If vaccines were a giant conspiracy, you can bet your bottom dollar that grad students would have published volumes on it.  

  • Twyla

    Mr. Moyers, I know that you are a highly intelligent, very thoughtful person, but you really need to do more homework on these issues.  

    I urge you to read these books:

    Evidence of Harm by David Kirby

    Vaccine Epidemic edited by Louise Kuo Habakus and Mary Holland

    Callous Disregard by Dr. Andrew Wakefield

    Changing the Course of Autism by Dr. Bryan Jepson

  • Jeanpublic1

    what is put into a persons body is the persons responsibility. if you dont want to associate with that person, stay home yourself. stop letting politicians make this decision. vaccines are being made in china, home of all poisons, 70 doses of vaccines are being pumped into our kids – far far too great an assault on a healthy body. the adjuvants in vaccines include metals like aluminum, and formaldehyde and mercury among others, all harmful to the body . people die from vaccines all of the time. 

  • Theredtheron

    Do you want citation for the earth being round too? Ask your parents or grandparents about polio. Ever heard of an iron lung? Know anything about FDR? Ever wonder why it isn’t around anymore when it used to be a pulic health menace? Did you know the polio vaccine was given away for free?

  • Twyla

    Mr. Moyers, please see the movie “The Greater Good”. please watch this interview with Dr. Bernadine Healy, former head of the NIH and IOM member, who told CBS News that “when she began researching autism and vaccines she found
    credible published, peer-reviewed scientific studies that support the idea of
    an association. That seemed to counter what many of her colleagues had been
    saying for years. She dug a little deeper and was surprised to find that the
    government has not embarked upon some of the most basic research that could
    help answer the question of a link.”

    Dr. Healy told CBS News that public health officials
    have intentionally avoided researching whether subsets of children are
    “susceptible” to vaccine side effects – afraid the answer will scare
    the public.

    “Healy said: ‘There is a completely expressed
    concern that they don’t want to pursue a hypothesis because that hypothesis
    could be damaging to the public health community at large by scaring people. First of all,’ Healy said, ‘I think the public’s smarter than
    that. The public values vaccines. But more importantly, I don’t think you
    should ever turn your back on any scientific hypothesis because you’re afraid
    of what it might show.’

    “As an example, Healy points to the existing vaccine court

    “CBS News has learned the government has paid
    more than 1,300 brain injury claims in vaccine court since 1988, but is not
    studying those cases or tracking how many of them resulted in autism.” a group of parents contacted about 250 families among that group of compensated vaccine brain injury claims.  They tried to do a FOIA request, but were told this would cost them $750,000 and take years, so they were only able to reach those they could find via public records.  Among this group, they found 83 cases of autism.

  • Darwin

    Survival of the fittest will function if everyone is free to make deadly choices such as these.

  • Rlmyers

    Mr. Moyers, Thank you for your thoughtful and timely essay on immunization. As a pediatrician who has cared for my community’s children for the past 20 years, I spend hours weekly educating parents about diseases and vaccines. As is borne out by the comments generated by your article, the amount of misinformation and misunderstanding about this issue is shocking. I give 10’s of thousands of vaccines yearly and have only once seen an adverse reaction bad enough to be reportable. Over the past 2 decades I have seen the rate of  several vaccine preventable infectious diseases fall precipitously and the need for our large pediatric inpatient unit shrivel. Likewise, the number of night calls about fever is a quarter of its prior number. My experience is mirrored by public health statistics.
    I’d like to recommend Seth Mnootkin’s , The Panic Virus, Simon & Schuster, 2011 as a balanced analysis of vaccine history. 

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Moyers,

    I’m progressive, I’m well educated and I lean toward agreement with Twyla elsewhere on this page of comments.

    When I hear you say that “Science” has largely debunked the vaccine/autism link, I have to ask, is the science at all encouraged, enhanced or coordinated by the pharmaceutical industry?   Is a large community of independent researchers lining up on the other side?  Is this what they call political science?

    We know that the Amish in America have a 1 in 15,000 incidence in autism and the rest of America has somewhere between a 1 in 150 or 1 in 100 incidence. 

    We know that the “mer” in thimerisol is for mercury.  We know from man-made mercury poisonings such as  Minimata disease that mercury can be a causal agent in neural synapse failure, specifically in cholinesterase neutralization.

    Science typically starts with anecdotal evidence.  Then researchers try to put together statistically significant clusters of such cases.  Then lab technicians try to find a medical cause and effect.  In this case, the anecdotal evidence is certain kids becoming autistic within hours of vaccination.  The cause and effect is plausible, as even low incremental doses of mercury can push someone over the edge.  Other suspects to our national epidemic have emerged — I know a mother who links her son’s problems to a pesticide application earlier in her pregnancy — but that doesn’t necessarily clear the pharmaceutical industry as one more suspect.

  • Ron storfer

    i agree with your assessment of the deadly consequences of avoiding vaccines. there isn’t a day that passes when i wish that salk had developed the polio vaccine five years earlier. too bad these naysayers can’t go back to the 40s and 50s to see the devastation of a child crippled by polio.  

  • Anonymous

     Paul- first of all, there is no proof that vaccines cause autism whatsoever, with the one exception of the Wakefield study that was shown to have been bullshitted for profit- the man was stripped of his license and also blood tested children unnecessarily at a birthday party if that gives you a picture.  A real scientific result would have to rely on multiple studies, you never go by a single one, and there simply aren’t any.  Third, the rise in Autism diagnosis is due to a better understanding of what Autism is and a broadened definition of what counts as Autism. Fourth, it is my understanding there is very little money to be had in vaccines- think about it, you only get a few a year, there’s a very low profit margin, and quite often we see vaccines provided for free to the poor.  The real money is in things like ADD meds, where we do sometimes see documented cases of abuse as you’d expect, but we also see studies showing the medicine does work when used correctly (this of course has not always been true for every med, but we’re getting better). Also, if memory serves not only was mercury use discontinued, but you actually get quite a bit more mercury from tuna than you would from a single shot.   All that said- sir, I support your, and anyone else’s, right to never be forced by a government institution to take any sort of medicine against your will, however I might wish for you own good and those of others you would do so.

  • Anonymous

    I may think that the people who don’t vaccinate are misinformed and making a dangerous mistake, but I will support legislation that gives them the personal freedom to make that mistake.  I certainly would never support legislation designed to force people to use a medicine (with perhaps some exceptions such as life-saving procedures in the case of children).  While the vaccine fears appear to me to be myth,  we there are true stories of medical abuses/mistakes in the past, & let’s not forget governmental ones, and this will happen again in the future.  This decision should be up to the individual, not the government.  We can try to solve the problem ourselves, through influence and education, but let’s not use the law to force people to agree with us.

  • Twyla

    If we were facing a situation such as that shown in the movie “Contagion”, then certainly draconian measures would be justified, including mandatory vaccination, if an effective vaccine existed.  But that movie is fiction.  That movie is not a realistic frame of reference for all vaccine decisions such as, for example, whether it makes sense to vaccinate all newborns on the date of birth with the hepatitis B vaccine.

    My autistic son received a hepatitis B vaccine on the day he was born in 1991.  When our pediatrician told us that this vaccine was now being recommended for all newborns by the CDC I did not question that at all, as I had complete confidence in the CDC.

    Later I learned that this vaccine serves absolutely no purpose for a newborn unless the mother is infected with the hepatitis B virus.  As I was not and have never been a hepatitis B carrier, this vaccine had no value for my son.  Hepatitis B is communicated like HIV, via exchange of bodily fluids.  Our son was not at risk for hepatitis B.

    Our health authorities made the decision to vaccinate all newborns with the hep B vaccine because of the very small number of  women who are carrying the virus but don’t know it, or who don’t wish to get tested or to admit that they have been exposed to this virus.  Until about 1998, this vaccine contained the preservative thimerosal, which is 49.6% mercury.  Mercury in even tiny amounts has been shown to kill nerve cells and disrupt the immune system.  On the first day of life, we know very little about a newborn baby.  Does s/he have allergies?  Are his/her kidneys and liver working o.k.?  The decision to give this vaccine to all newborns is an example of the worst kind of weighing of risks and benefits.

    If we were only talking about vaccinating against the kind of disease shown in the movie Contagion, that would be another story.

    A 2009 study found that “”Boys who received the hepatitis B vaccine during the first month of life had 2.94 greater odds for ASD compared to later- or unvaccinated boys.”

  • Mramos1511

    The recent increase in pertussis is often blamed on non-vaccinators, but we actually still have a high rate of  DTaP vaccination, and many of those who have come down with pertussis were actually vaccinated.  It appears that the vaccine is not as effective as before; some have suggested that the pertussis germ has mutated. 

    Immunized People Getting Whooping Cough, Experts Spar Over
    New Strain

    Joanne Faryon, KPBS and Kevin Crowe, Watchdog Institute

  • Anonymous

     …so millions of doctors, scientists, journalists, and so on are all conspiring together to poison other people for money, and they are so good at it that no one with any decent evidence has caught them?  I think that’s highly unlikely.

  • Anonymous

     correlation is not causation.  I support your freedom, though, even if it’s to make bad decisions.

  • Twyla

    Science has not debunked a link between vaccines and autism. Here is SafeMind’s critique of some of the research which is said to disprove a link:

    Thousands of parents have reported regression into autism following vaccines, including several thousand who filed claims which were denied by the vaccine court.  Oddly, the CDC and other health authorities say that vaccines can cause febrile seizures, encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), encephalopathy (brain injury or disease) but maintain that seizure disorders and autism cannot be caused by vaccines.

    This article by David Kirby does a good job of explaining some of the reasons why the autism-vaccine debate won’t go away:

  • GradyLeeHoward

    Twyla: I admire your sincere efforts here, even though our politics and scientific judgment may differ. It is absolutist and totalitarian to suggest mass inocculation for any and every contagion remain unquestioned. Keep up your research and your empathetic work. When I look at autism statistics or think of my best friend crippled by live polio virus administered in a sugar cube (1960s) I cringe at doctors without doubt.

  • GradyLeeHoward

    How could there be signs for flu vaccination at every chain drugstore if there were a shortage? Maybe they’re  using springwater injections to get $25? American medicine is mostly snake oil. Every office has 4 business managers per nurse, and the doctor drops by one hour a day at most. We pay too much.

  • GradyLeeHoward

    Well, remember the epidemic of unnecessary hysterectomies and by-pass heart surgeries this last decade, and the scandal over cancer-causing hormone replacement? A needle works much more easily to extract the dough.

  • Chris

    You need to talk to the parents of some of the children killed, crippled, diseased or otherwise injured by vaccines and see for yourself how all of these fears are ‘founded in myth’.  The CDC has even admitted these vaccines can hurt kids.  There is a billion dollar relief fund to compensate people hurt by them.  Are you kidding me?  We can argue theory, efficacy and necessity all day, but if you think all fears are founded in myth, you’re completely delusional.

  • Chris

    I can’t even read your whole wall of text, because you’ve already proven, in a previous comment to have your head buried far in the sand.  That said, the CDC in on video admitting that post vaccine encephalitis is a common vaccine complication.  They then said about 2% (they actually said 1 in 50) kids have an underlying mitochondrial disorder that when encountering post vaccine encephalitis, will develop ‘autism-like symptoms’.  This was a not-so-subtle skirt around the connection.  Moving on to mercury…  Ingested mercury is not injected mercury.  Get educated if you are going to talk like you have a clue.  Mercury is not readily absorbed when ingested.  It passes, mostly, without any absorption in small quantities.  Injected mercury, however, is readily absorbed into the tissues, where is can enter the bloodstream, cross the blood brain barrier, etc.     and do horrible damage.

  • Isabella_11372

    I wish some room had been left for discourse by those medical practitioners who do not believe vaccinating our children is wise.  This is not just religious lunacy or a power struggle over who is responsible for the child, there is reasoned opinion of dissent in this area. 

  • Julia Johanna Carlson

    Since efficacy standards in this society are measured by published scientific studies, this essay is invalid until a study demonstrating that the CDC’s full-combination vaccination schedule is effective, reliable and is an actual proponent to public health. 

    There has not been a study done on the efficacy of the CDC’s full-comibination vaccination schedule to date.

    Until then, I will continue to choose to opt-out of vaccinating my children.

  • Richlisagood

    Oh my Bill, how very disappointing. I
    was surprised to see you addressing this issue in such an
    oversimplified manner and holding corporate sponsored whitewash
    propaganda up as “proven science”. However, I am very heartened
    to see from the comments that an overwhelming number of your loyal
    supporters feel the same way. Many others have posted & linked
    detailed responses to most of the misguided assumptions and faulty
    data that this sloppy presentation so lazily relies on – so I don’t
    need to go into those specifics.

    However, one additional thing that
    bothered me about this piece, and that no one has mentioned, is the
    clear insinuation that West Virginia and 6 other States are now
    pushing for greater exemptions than the three (medical, religious, &
    philosophical) already allowed. VERY misleading and false alarmist
    type presentation – something I would expect from Fox, not Moyers.

    I haven’t researched the other 6
    States, but West Virginia currently allows only medical exemptions –
    effectively eliminating parental choice except for those who are
    lucky enough to find a doctor unowned and unafraid of the powerful &
    corrupt medical establishment.  So the fight in WV is not about
    expanding exemptions – it is about giving WV parents the rights
    they should already have – to not have harmful toxins forcefully
    injected into their babies against their will.    If you chose to do a
    more thorough and fact-based investigation on this, as others have
    suggested, I recommend you include Robert F. Kennedy Jr. as a source.


  • Marathon Jon

    How can such a smart person like Bill Moyers be duped into believing the propaganda about vaccines? Is it fear? If you’re so worried, Bill, then why don’t you get all your shots updated? Try following the schedule for a 6-year old and see how you like getting 30 shots. But then you shouldn’t get these diseases, right? Oh, there’s something about herd immunity; they only work if most people have been vaccinated. Now does that make sense? To the pharmaceutical companies, it does. Just hope you aren’t one of the people who suffers an adverse reaction, like brain damage or even death. Yes, vaccines can cause these: just check the website of the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) ( But don’t expect your doctor to tell you about these risks before you’re given any shots. Informed consent doesn’t apply here. Just don’t ask questions, don’t think about it, shut up, and do what they tell you. 

  • Richlisagood

     You are right, the whole concept of “Herd Immunity” makes no sense, but it should raise a few eyebrows. 

    As in, “Any sheep that strays from the ‘Herd’ shall be taunted and called a ‘Conspiracy Theorist'”

  • Blaze

    Bill, Bill, Bill.  We cheered you on the old show when you tackled hard topics head on.  SO FEW VOICES OF TRUTH out there.  We were so excited when you started a new show, hoping  the new Bill Moyers would come out hard against Big Corporate, Big Medicine, Big Insurance, Big Pharma, Big Charities and the scourge behind them all – Big FED   Did I mention Big Media?  Sigh.  Therein lies the problem. Too honest and you go the way of Judge Napolitano and Pat Buchanan.  One more watered-down-Bill-Moyers and weare so not watching again. 

  • Sdoudnas

    Seems like we need to do a study that includes vaccinated vs unvaccinated children and see what we come up with. Oh and we need an unbiased organization to do the study…Not big Pharma. I have three very healthy children that have never been vaccinated ages 20, 17, and 10. All have been very healthy. Get the facts before you vaccinate that is all I’m gonna say.

  • Company2222

    You might want to dig a little deeper on the Wakefield issue…his study was just replicated by two scientists, was peer reviewed and published…much to the chagrin of offitt….vindicating Wakefield and certianly continuing the proof that autism is caused by the massive increase in toxicity in our vaccines…The real scientists as you call them are saying there is a real correlation…dig deeper helfk….it is there…

  • Company222

    Please stop practicing medicine.

  • Company2222

    I really appreciate your reasoned response.  Thank you.  This is a real issue with hundreds of thousands of families who are suffering…

  • DSarvis

    It does not strike me as irrational to distrust the
    pharmaceutical industry, particularly when they work hand in glove with
    overzealous public health bureaucrats and captive regulators in enforcing a
    profitable system of monopoly state-mandated medical interventions.  Liberals are SUPPOSED to distrust Big Pharma;
    and conservatives are SUPPOSED to distrust state-mandated medical experiments
    and the CDC/FDA.  So why then the blind
    spot blanket waiver for vaccines?

    This used to be the sort of arrangement that Moyers INVESTIGATED, rather than
    accepting their fear-based coercive propaganda and claims to safety at face

    Perhaps Mr. Moyers has gone the way of Andy Rooney. Riffing on a sentimental
    brain fart composed entirely of received wisdom and knee jerk gauzy historical
    revision.  I have found that people who remember polio are among the least
    able to handle vaccine skepticism.  Fair enough, polio was awful. 
    Polio, by the way, is transmitted by fecal-oral -so perhaps we should thank
    flush toilets and hand washing as much as vaccines.

    It does not strike me as irrational to question the wisdom of our relentlessly
    expanding and increasingly self-fulfilling system of preemptive medical
    interventions.  Enough is enough.  Enough complexity.  Enough
    techno-grandiosity.  Enough relying on
    experts.  Enough making war on ourselves
    and our environment.

    Twenty years ago, we threw antibiotics at everything.  It was a medical
    miracle.  It was so good for us; we started giving it to our food as well.  Look what happened with that.

    Will Mr. Moyers next run a piece critical of genetically modified food
    skeptics?  GMO food is, after all, PROVEN SAFE by SCIENCE.  Or so we
    are told.  And they are going to feed all the starving people in the world
    with it.  What kind of monster gets in the way of feeding all the starving
    people in the world!

  • Walter Mariani

    I consider you one of the few people left deserving admiration.
    But with all respect, I don’t think you have all the story about vaccines.I’m not a religious zealot, nor have someting against real science.But it seems that  Science & Medicine have been highjacked by the same money greedy forces that have created the financial debacle, but we haven’t paid much attention. 
    In our boyhood we got vaccines from Mds & researchers that mostly may have wanted to benefit Humanity & not their pockets or the bottom line of some corporation.See what Dr. Salk, the creator of the polio vaccine did.Today it has become just another big business.For the past 10 years I have read  many different medical newsletters a month written by recognized Mds.All of them don’t have much good to say about the vaccines we are being sold as medicine today.I wish I could send you some of the articles writen by Dr. Russell I. Blaylock, Dr. William Campbell Douglass, Dr. Robert Jay Rowen, Dr. David G. Williams, Dr. Jonathan V. Wright & many other Mds & medical researchers.
    Maybe some of us are not as crazy as it may appear & we oppose, not the process of vaccination but what some people have done with it.
    Mr. Moyers, please check a little deeper , if anyone can do better justice to this subject it may be you.The life & health of many are at a crossroad.Thanks!

  • Twyla

    Personally, I believe that vaccines have been effective against some diseases, such as small pox.  But that doesn’t mean that it is safe for all infants to receive two dozen vaccines during the first two years of life, or safe to receive 7 to 9 vaccines at one office visit.  And that doesn’t mean that vaccines don’t cause autism.

  • Twyla

    That is a very good point about these states only considering the philosophical exemption, same as many other states have.

    Regarding RFK Jr., here is a great article by him:
    He talks about how totally close-minded the NY Times was to discussing vaccines and autism:
    “I expected a discussion with the editor of the Times, but when I went in to meet, they had assembled a group of science editors that were so hostile and antagonistic, it was like talking to a brick wall…”

    And he describes the many report of vaccine induced autism that he received after writing an article on the subject:
    “In 2006, Kennedy wrote an article for Rolling Stone magazine called ‘Deadly Immunity.’ The response to his piece was overwhelming: following the publication, Kennedy received thousands of letters and emails from all over the world. ‘The astounding thing was how alike all of them were and that people from Mississippi to New Delhi shared such identical experiences. Here is the typical scenario I heard: A mother took her toddler to the doctor where he received a spate of vaccines, became ill that night, often with a fever, sometimes with seizures, then lost the language he had, developed stereotyped behavior and regressed into a looking-glass world of debilitated relationships and social isolation.'” 

    He says that, “nothing prepared him for the resistance and anger he faced when discussing autism with politicians and the media. ‘The unbelievable thing is how these children’s stories are suppressed by the medical community, big Pharma and the American press. There is a total refusal to have the discussion and derision towards anyone who tries.’”

  • Twyla

    Here is an excellent paper describing the imbalances in our vaccine program and calling for:
    • A mission of securing positive health outcomes for children and families;• A commitment to a total health perspective, including chronic as well as infectious disease, developmental disability as well as episodic illness, and quality of life as well as the absence of disease;• A recognition of the crisis of the chronic disease epidemics among children, including autism, learning disabilities, attention deficits and other neuro-developmental disorders as well as asthma, allergy, juvenile-onset diabetes and other autoimmune disorders;• A vaccine policy that treats all citizens, including parents, as intelligent participants in the health choices they make for themselves, their children and their communities and requires true informed consent for participation in vaccine programs;• An operating philosophy that sets a goal of zero vaccine adverse reactions and treats each reaction respectfully, indeed as a resource for diagnosis and prevention of future vaccine adverse reactions, especially those that lead to chronic adverse health outcomes;• A governance model for vaccine policy-making based on true public accountability, characterized by public inclusion, openness to scientific criticism and a willingness to accept past shortfalls as an opportunity for learning, growth and change.

  • Faith

    Tyla:  You are so in the dark when it comes to vaccines!  Follow the money.  There has never been a study done on cumulative impact!   Kids get 3-5 shots at one time!  Read the inserts to the vaccines they list autism and many other life threatening side-effects. Also, ask yourself “why do doctors give a newborn a Hep B shot on day two of life?”  Once you read about how hep b is contracted you will see it is only for the money and has zero benefit for the newborn.

  • Anonymous

     I’m happy to do so, and perfectly willing to change my views should I see evidence to the contrary.  What I was referring to is specifically the myth that vaccines cause autism and the myth that a millions of doctors, scientists, journalists, and manufacturers are working together to deliberately poison and kill people for money.   I certainly don’t think all fears are founded on myth, I said nothing whatsoever to indicate that and indeed I said that we know there have been medical abuses and errors. I also said that I don’t think anyone should be forced to use vaccines.  What I am saying is that if you don’t have proper evidence to believe something, you shouldn’t believe it.  If no scientific study or proper investigation shows any evidence that there is a link between a given vaccine and a given disease, and in fact studies show the contrary, that there is no such link, you should not persist in believing that doctors are deliberately poisoning you when that is clearly absurd. Perhaps you should go talk to the people in the 3rd world to whom vaccines are not available and people of our grandparents generation before they were available and ask them how it feels to have a large number of their fellow classmates killed, crippled, etc. by polio, chicken pox, and other preventable diseases.  Even if there is a small risk of something going wrong with your vaccine, it’s quite a lot less harmful if you look at the big picture than not doing anything to prevent these diseases from killing so many people.

  • Anonymous

    Study challenges notion of ‘pandemic’ flu
    CDC-labeled pandemics no deadlier than seasonal influenza
    MIT News, April 11, 2008

    Advisers on Vaccines Often Have Conflicts, Report Says
    By Gardiner Harris, New York Times, December 17, 2009

    Conflict of Interest and Vaccine Development

    Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg – Faked Pandemic: WHO and Big Pharma, H1N1-Report of the Council of Europe
    June 7, 2010

    Finland vows care for narcolepsy kids who had swine flu shot
    AFP via Google Hosted News, October 5, 2011

    Germany to destroy expensive, unwanted swine flu vaccine
    Deutsche Welle, August 17, 2011,,15324186,00.html

    [Less than ten percent of people in France and Germany decided to get this vaccine while Poland did not allow this vaccine to be distributed in the country at all.]

    Poland Says “No” to H1N1 Vaccine 
    Of the world’s 193 recognized sovereign states, only Poland refused the H1N1 vac…

    Pandemic funding, liability shield clear CongressCIDRAP News, Dec 28, 2005’Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., and other Republican leaders argued that the liability measure was necessary to induce biotechnology companies to develop products to counter pandemic flu and other disease threats.[…]But Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and some other Democrats, along with consumer groups such as Public Citizen, derided the liability provision as a giveaway to the drug industry. Kennedy said the bill makes it “essentially impossible” for injured parties to sue for damages. He also argued that the measure allows the HHS secretary to use many common diseases as a reason to activate the liability shield. “Without a real compensation program, the liability protection in the defense bill provides a Christmas present to the drug industry and bag of coal to everyday Americans,” stated a Dec 21 news release issued by Kennedy and Sens. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and Chris Dodd, D-Conn.’

    Reports detail risk of seizures in kids after flu vaccination
    Robert Roos CIDRAP News, Feb 27, 2012

    Genetically engineered vaccines: ‘Inherently unpredictable and possibly dangerous’
    Third World Network

    Pharmaceutical Industry Is Biggest Defrauder of the Federal Government Under the False Claims Act, New Public Citizen Study Finds
    Public Citizen, December 16, 2010

    Are prescription drugs safe? Not necessarily
    Consumer Reports, November 2009

    Most Drugs Don’t Work

    Useless Studies, Real Harm
    By Carl Elliot, New York Times, July 28, 2011

    Two Prominent Vaccine “Experts” Exposed
    Alliance for Human Research Protection

    HPV vaccine isn’t the only procedure Rick Perry has mandated

    Biodefense and Pandemic Vaccine and Drug Development Act of 2005 – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    ‘The Biodefense and Pandemic Vaccine and Drug Development Act of 2005 (S. 1873), nicknamed “Bioshield Two” and sponsored by Senator Richard Burr (R-North Carolina), aims shorten the pharmaceutical development process for new vaccines and drugs in case of a pandemic, and to protect vaccine makers and the pharmaceutical industry from legal liability for vaccine injuries.’

    Vaccines and autism: a new scientific review
    Sharyl Attkisson, CBS News, March 31 2011
    ‘For all those who’ve declared the autism-vaccine debate over – a new scientific review begs to differ. It considers a host of peer-reviewed, published theories that show possible connections between vaccines and autism. 
    The article in the Journal of Immunotoxicology is entitled “Theoretical aspects of autism: Causes–A review.” The author is Helen Ratajczak, surprisingly herself a former senior scientist at a pharmaceutical firm. Ratajczak did what nobody else apparently has bothered to do: she reviewed the body of published science since autism was first described in 1943. Not just one theory suggested by research such as the role of MMR shots, or the mercury preservative thimerosal; but all of them.’

    A Positive Association found between Autism Prevalence and Childhood Vaccination uptake across the U.S. Population
    Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A: Current Issues
    Volume 74, Issue 14, 2011

    We Don’t Know Enough About Childhood Vaccines
    By Margaret Dunkle, Baltimore Sun, July 11, 2011,0,7906966.story

    GlaxoSmithKline not liable to pay Pandemrix damages -Mediuutiset
    Helsinki Times, 04 February 2011

    GSK fined after over vaccine trials; 14 babies reported dead–babies

    Research supports link in autism to mercury
    Tina Hesman, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, December 13, 2004

    Plans by Feds to Charge Corporate Executives in Medicare, Medicaid Fraud Cases is Good News

    Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine Policy and Evidence-Based Medicine: Are They at Odds?

    Whooping Cough Epidemic Caused by Virulent New Pertussis Strain—And It’s the Result of Vaccine
    Heidi Stevens, Gaia Health, June 28, 2011

    Vaccine Injury Compensation: A Failed Experiment in Tort Reform? 
    Barbara Loe Fisher, National Vaccine Information Center

    ‘On Nov. 14, 1986, President Ronald Reagan signed the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 into law,  instituting first-time vaccine safety reforms in the U.S. vaccination system and creating the first no-fault federal vaccine injury compensation program alternative to a lawsuit against vaccine manufacturers and pediatricians.’

    Supreme Court shields vaccine makers from lawsuits 
    The Supreme Court’s 6-2 ruling upholds a federal law that offers compensation to victims of side effects from vaccines and prohibits lawsuits. 
    By David G. Savage, Los Angeles Times, February 22, 2011

    ‘Justice Antonin Scalia said the high court majority agreed with Congress that these side effects were “unavoidable” when a vaccine is given to millions of children.


    Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg dissented, arguing that Congress did not mean to shield drug makers from suits if their vaccines were defective and prone to cause injuries. Justice Elena Kagan did not participate in the decision.’

    Testimony by Gary Null at the New York State Assembly in October 2009 against a mandatory flu vaccination order for health care workers. This quote comes from the third video clip in a series of three clips on this:
    ‘And I might mention, I keep hearing everyone say the expert panel agreed that there was no connection, I heard it earlier in the day, between vaccines and autism. But I happened to actually go to the research and I found that that was absolutely not true. In fact, of the members of the panel of that vaccine oversight committee, thirteen members of the committee said that there was a connection, they had no vaccine or drug company affiliation, the small percentage that said that there was not a connection all had vaccine or drug company affiliations. And I am surprised that that information has not been made available. I also have all the studies on the sicknesses that children have developed when they have taken the flu vaccines, and all of these separate studies. They are all peer-reviewed.’
    Part 1: Gary Null Speaking Out at the NYS Assembly Hearing, 10-13-2009:

    Jennifer Craig, Origins of Vaccines, video/webinar
    [On problems with initial smallpox vaccination, Edward Jenner’s work. The sound on this one is not great at first, but it gets better and this contains some very interesting historical documentation on this.]

    Swine Flu Cases Overestimated?
    Sharyl Attkisson, CBS News, October 27, 2009

    Effects of Tamiflu Still Uncertain, Warn Experts, as Roche Continues to Withhold Key Trial Data, According to New Report
    ScienceDaily, January 20, 2012

    Mechanisms of Aluminum Adjuvant Revealed: Vaccine Risks to Children Clarified
    Gaia Health, January 14, 2012

    WHO-linked centre lays patent claim related to bird flu virus 

    Tamiflu Data Called Inconsistent, Underreported 
    Nancy A. Melville, Medscape, January 20, 2012 

    Is Pfizer the BP of Drug Companies? 
    Martha Rosenberg,, 7/15/2010 

    Bio-Lab’s Untold Story 
    GMWatch, January 20 2012

    New IOM Report on Vaccine Adverse Effects Shows Alarming Lack of Good Science 

    Romanian Flu Vaccines Recalled 
    UPI, January 17, 2012 

    U.S. to Force Drug Firms to Report Money Paid to Doctors 
    By Robert Pear, New York Times, January 16, 2012 

    The Shocking Lack of Evidence Supporting Flu Vaccines 

    No magic bullet on the flu 
    David Finkelstein, Los Angeles Times, January 2012,0,6714636.story 

    14 New Side Effects Found of Widely Prescribed Swine Flu Drug Tamiflu 

    Vaccine-induced Toxicity page, GreenMedInfo 
    [Scroll down on this page to find a list of studies cited on this.]

    Feds Hit Pfizer with a $2.3 Billion Fine
    The Obama Administration, determined to show a tough stance against drugmakers, levies the largest drug-marketing penalty ever

    Whistleblower Scientist Accuses British Medical Journal of Institutional Research Misconduct
    Actions of BMJ Editor and Reporter “More Tabloid News than Science” According to Dr. David Lewis, and “a Genuine Threat to Public Health”

    An Elaborate Fraud, Part 1: In Which a Murdoch Reporter Deceives the Mother of a Severely Autistic Child
    Dan Olmsted, Age of Autism,

    Brian Deer Lords it at a Pharmaceutical Conference in FranceJohn Stone, Age of Autism

  • Anonymous

    Posting this one again so the link works:

    Pandemic funding, liability shield clear Congress
    CIDRAP News, Dec 28, 2005

    ‘Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., and other Republican leaders argued that the liability measure was necessary to induce biotechnology companies to develop products to counter pandemic flu and other disease threats.


    But Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and some other Democrats, along with consumer groups such as Public Citizen, derided the liability provision as a giveaway to the drug industry. Kennedy said the bill makes it “essentially impossible” for injured parties to sue for damages. 

    He also argued that the measure allows the HHS secretary to use many common diseases as a reason to activate the liability shield.

    “Without a real compensation program, the liability protection in the defense bill provides a Christmas present to the drug industry and bag of coal to everyday Americans,” stated a Dec 21 news release issued by Kennedy and Sens. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and Chris Dodd, D-Conn.’

  • Linda Rolf

    I heard the British reseacher who originally published the results linking vaccines to autism over 10 tears ago admitted to fraud.  Why does this not make the news on par with his original findings? Because you want the freedom to chose the results that suit your cause regardless of the facts.   

  • Linda Rolf

    The truth is that before the development of modern medicine including vaccines a lot of people died of preventable diseases.  I have spent time in India where I people with scars on their faces from smallpox, or who where crippled from polio or leprosy. Ask any recent immigrants from the 3rd World what their countries were like before vaccines were standardized.  “Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it.” George Santayana

  • Linda Rolf

    Great! The pseudoscience followers think they know more than actual doctors!  What next?

  • Linda Rolf

    People with enough sense to get vaccinated from preventable diseases should not have to “stay home” to avoid this new unvaccinated herd. This is why the science of public health exists!

  • Linda Rolf

    Thank you for sharing your story Trevor.

  • Andie

    As a RN,  I refuse the flu vaccine every year.  I try to keep my immune system healthy by other means.  I have raised 3 boys age 23,20,16, all were vaccinated as children.  I was also vaccinated as a child, I agree with some of the post about vaccinations, I don’t think we should lump them all together.  I agree that giving newborns hep B vaccines and young children HPV vaccines should not be required.  Certain vaccinations should be given only if requested, for traveling or high risk factors and I agree that we can’t vaccinate against every disease in the world no matter what the “big Pharm companies want.”  When I was vaccinated as a child it was just a few diseases I was vaccinated against, I do agree that we have gone overboard with so many types of vaccinations.
    I live in the United States of America and I do believe we have the right to make our choices, I think vaccinations started with the best intentions and saved so many lives.  I don’t live in a country were children aren’t even given a choice to be vaccinated,  I am sure there are mothers who would give anything to protect their children from diseases we don’t have to deal with in our country.

  • Amaragrace

    Dr Wakefield did not admit fraud; he was wrongfully accused of fraud and is suing the British Medical Journal, it’s editor and the dishonest journalist who has made a (pharma supported) career out of harassing and villifying the doctor’s replicated and standard-of-care-improving work.  Your mis-quoting of the  reported corporate media’s pharma-agenda-driven propaganda reveals the level of mis-informed, dis-informed, and uninformed awareness that the pharmaceutical industry dreams of for it’s market of customers. 
    “…“…Scientists who come out and publish data, that are not wanted by the government, not wanted by industry and not even wanted by Universities funded by government and industry, then those Scientists are targeted to be discredited and the weapon of choice in that battle is false allegations of research misconduct, because you can lodge those kind of allegations, get them spread around and by the time the Scientist has proven his or her innocence years down the road, their research is over with, their careers are destroyed, they can never recover from it normally….”

    Dr David Lewis 
     The doctor you refer to is no normal, ordinary doctor, and will prevail because he was, is and continues doing the work that is oriented to finding both the truth and answers for the children who were made sick – very very sick – by these toxic soup injections.
    Trying to find this doctor’s name among a list of truth-telling and persecuted doctors & scientists throughout history is like playing “Where’s Waldo”; he is among stellar company. I often think he is the Dr. Semmelweis of the 21st century, and this time, he will live to see his work and his name publicaly vindicated. He is far from ruined because he is a man of character and integriy; I cannot say anything but the opposite of the pharma-patsy journalist and the network of industry cronies who attempted to quiet him.
    Incidentally, vaccine transparency advocates have been alive, well, vocal and dedicated to revealing the truth about the fundamentlaly flawed theory and detrimental practice of introducing infected pus, filth, and later neurotoxins, animal & human DNA, genetically modified proteins and heavy metals into the Human bloodstream to “prevent disease” for as long as misguided and deluded vaccinationists have been doing it; more than 250 years. We aren’t going away, as Dr. Wakefield is fond of saying. 

  • Company2222

     Amaragrace…..what an awesome rebuttal…we are not going anywhere…we will prevail….thank you!

  • Company2222

     What an absolutely wonderful post.  Thx!

  • Amaragrace

    Only corporate-generated studies – commonly known as “tobacco science” – shows no links…the actual studies showing links are published and all you have to do is suspend your disbelief and you’ll see them…many of the links have been posted here already. The best way not to see something is not to look for it, as the government does so well regarding the issue of vaccine damage, permanent injuries & deaths. There are 73 vaccines licensed in the US…it takes more than reading one or a few studies to learn how vaccines cause autism and many other chronic health dosorders; there isn’t just one study…there are hundreds.

  • Amaragrace

    The mitochondrial damage is actually done by the vaccines, not already there as the govpHARMedical industry wants everyone to believe.’s_Desk/post/Vaccines_and_neonatal_immune_development/

  • Amaragrace

    Vaccinationism is psudoscience; injecting neurotoxic soups infected with genetically modified viruses, proteins Human & animal DNA, and heavy metals  past the body’s first line of defense…”for disease prevention”… is the literal insanity. 
    If you or I did it, we’d be charged with child abuse and attempted murder; when someone thoroughly indoctrinated by the pharmaceutical industry does it, it’s called “a well-baby visit”.
    “Safety testing on the INTER-relationship of vaccines has NEVER been done. 
    The vaccines on the schedule have never been tested together. 
    Neither the CDC nor FDA can prove that the current schedule is safe…”

  • Amaragrace

    Vaccination is not “immunization”

    Immunization; Vaccination; Inoculation

    In the CDC (Centers For Disease Control) publication MMWR (December 1, 2006 / Vol. 55 / No. RR-15) there occurs the following clarification regarding “vaccination” and “immunization”:

    “Vaccination and immunization. The terms vaccine and vaccination are derived from vacca, the Latin term for cow. Vaccine was the term used by Edward Jenner to describe material used (i.e., cowpox virus) to produce immunity to smallpox. The term vaccination was used by Louis Pasteur in the 19th century to include the physical act of administering any vaccine or toxoid. Immunization is a more inclusive term, denoting the process of inducing or providing immunity by administering an immunobiologic. Immunization can be active or passive. Active immunization is the production of antibody or other immune responses through administration of a vaccine or toxoid. Passive immunization means the provision of temporary immunity by the administration of preformed antibodies. Although persons often use the terms vaccination and immunization interchangeably in reference to active immunization, the terms are not synonymous because the administration of an immunobiologic cannot be equated automatically with development of adequate immunity.” 

    In other words, vaccination, as a rule, does not lead to developed immunity. Connected to this is the issue of whether antibody production equates to protection from disease. We will cover this in other articles, since vaccines are marketed on the basis of their “efficacy” in generating an antibody response. So there are two issues: a) Does being vaccinated lead to the conclusion that one has developed immunity? b) Does generation of antibodies lead to the conclusion that one has been protected from the disease?

    The answers to both these questions is no.  

  • Anonymous

     Indeed, even a modicum of research on the behavior of the CDC and the other components of the vaccine industry show’s it’s irrational to trust them.

  • GradyLeeHoward

    In terms of political economy “herd immunity” can easily become a tool for social control not integral to public health. As soon as one terms the general population a herd a hierarchical and parasitic class relationship is implied. Much of our mythology originates in the paternalistic pastoral tradition. If the best research of contemporary medical research has determined anything significant it is that each of us is a biologically unique individual.
    Running people down an (dis)assembly line and capping every bottle is more akin to an exploitative mindset, where each person is a unit to be mined and used up.
    This maladaptation well illustrates the “inverted totalitarian” model of Sheldon Wolin (Democracy Incorporated) where the mostly superfluous population is perceived as the greatest threat to order and control. You can scare most Americans with the term “social engineering”, but the fear generated is primarily employed as a herding device. Medicine must aspire to more than chutes and ladders. Each vaccine regime must be evaluated on its own advantages and risks as applied to individual circumstance. (Ask your doctor if horn-docking might be right for you.)

  • The Cynical Pharmacist

    Mr. Moyers, as many of these comments have shown, it’s not “complacency” that’s led to an increase in parents not vaccinating their children, it’s distrust of the government.

    While I don’t agree with the distrustful people when it comes to vaccinations, I do fully understand  why they’re so distrustful. Judging by your other reports of corporatocracy or plutocracy increasing it’s presence in our society and government, I think that you too can understand why the rates of unvaccinated children is rising. It seems as though vaccination rates are inversely proportional to the faith many Americans have in the system. The less the faith, the higher the numbers of unvaccinated children.

  • sherry

    Thank you for writing this.  I am 52 and I have very strong memories of those of my parents friends who got polio in the epidemic during the 1940’s. They were in their teens or young twenties at the time. By the time I met them, they were either in wheelchairs, or had such reduced musculature in their legs that they could walk but never run. Why would you choose to not vaccinate your children thus exposing them to that kind of risk? Because you are young enough that you have never actually seen anyone ill with the disease.  

  • Anonymous

     you make the assumption that I haven’t made the effort to research anything, which is untrue.  Not sure what you mean by “corporate studies”, the studies I am looking at are pretty standard, coming out of Universities, etc.  I simply haven’t seen any studies that show a direct link between autism and a vaccine.  I did say that if I see such evidence, I’ll reconsider, I simply haven’t yet, so there is no reason for me to believe something I haven’t seen any evidence for. And I really gravely doubt that hundreds of thousands of scientists, doctors, & workers are aware of these studies that I can’t find and ignoring them, or all too stupid (like me) to be aware of them or able to find them.  Scientists & doctors are human beings, too, and some of them have autistic children themselves.  Furthermore, the entire idea that millions of people are conspiring to poison children for a relatively small profit makes little sense.  We know that autism has always been with us, it used to be called childhood schizophrenia, and we know that the definition of autism was recently expanded, and that is why there are more kids getting that diagnosis.  So it just seems really unlikely to me.  That doesn’t mean it’s not true, and if I see evidence that it is true I’ll revise my opinion, but given what I know about the universe and human beings I’d say it’s rather unlikely that a whole bunch of us are secretly deliberately spreading Autism to a small part of the population identical to the pre-vaccine population of Autism.

  • Company2222


    Here is a place to start about the connection between vac & autism….

    Also, I do not think 37 billion is a small profit at the expense of our children…

    Oh…try reading Russel Baylock, Meryl Ness, Sheryl Humprhies….all doctors challenging the notion that vaccines are good for our health…Baylock is a neurologist…..he speaks specifically that injecting a developing brain with the toxins that are in these vaccines is a surefire recipe for a mess…ie we are the fastest growing autism rate in the world and the fastest growing infant mortality rate for a 1st world country…SOMETHING IS VERY WRONG….and all of the people who still say innoculating our babies, esp madmen like offit, should be….well…you can fill in the blank….
       There is ample research showing the autism/vac connection….

  • Company2222


    I do appreciate that you are open minded, willing to study further and that you do not believe anyone should be forced…There are many who are not as you….which is scarey…

  • Company2222

     profits in the billions….naaw….I think the big business end of the Big Pharma is not in question.

  • Company2222

     Lots of Doctors do not know…truly do not know….the effects of excitotoxins on small brains….many doctors have been taught the party line…that vaccines are safe…vaccines are good…oh look at polio (which is actually a myth—rates were dropping before vacs were ever introduced….)
       Meryl Ness and Dr.Nancy Banks….are both great places to hear about the indoctrination of doctors in med school…the doctors who step out and challenge/questions get ostracized…..Look at Wakefield…..his study has just been reproduced…but Wakefield is having to fight so hard…when all he did was say, Hey…we have a problem here…and we do.
       So, some is educating doctors….

  • Company2222

     It is not a fact…the rates of polio were dropping before the polio vaccines started…
    You also might want to look at the numbers of polio that happened FROM the vaccines…

  • Company2222

     Ignorance in this case is not bliss….
    It is not luck…is it sanity…
    And the backroom deals are well documented…doctors get paybacks for pushing vaccines…

    Ignorance is not bliss.

  • Company2222

     Not common…how can you say this….1 in 90?  We are the fastest growing country for autism rates…the numbers correlate directly with the introduction of the hep vaccine….have you talked to the families….?

  • Sallyberlin

    Follow the money. It’s not only Big Pharma making the profits. It is also the pediatricians. Their offices are filled with children waiting to get immunizations.  Additionally, these drug companies make huge contributions to the American Academy of Pediatrics who, in turn, promote their products.

  • Twyla

    Sherry, I am too young to remember small pox and polio.  But one of my parents’ friends was in a wheelchair from polio, had many health issues, and died before reaching old age.  I am old enough to remember measles, mumps, German measles, whooping cough, chicken pox, and flu.  Everyone came down with those illnesses when I was growing up, and nobody I knew suffered any lasting consequences.  I know complications can occur, but they are not as common as some would have us believe.  

    In the face of serious adverse reactions to vaccines and increasing rates of cognitive and immune system disorders which may well be related to vaccines, many respond by saying, “But what about Polio?!?”  Polio does not prove the safety of giving two dozen vaccines during the first two years of life.  Polio does not mean we can disregard the problems with vaccines and not investigate why adverse reactions occur, who is susceptible, how can these reactions be prevented, and how can they be treated.  And many of the diseases we vaccinate against are nowhere near as dangerous as polio.

    Interestingly, the polio virus was around for many years before the 1950’s epidemic and previously did not cause so many serious problems.  Here are a couple of interesting articles about some of the possible reasons why this germ became more powerful:

  • Anonymous

    thanks.  I agree with you on that point- if more of us supported individual freedom I believe the world would be a much better place. be

  • HelenPB

    I’m a pediatrician, and I can tell you that on many vaccines we barely break even.  And I know of quite a few pediatricians that cannot afford to keep certain vaccines on hand due to cost.  I love how people like you say things as if it’s a fact with absolutely no knowledge of same.  Show us the documentation for paybacks.  Saying something, even repeatedly saying something, does not make it true, and you stand about 180 degrees from where the truth lies.

  • Twyla

    One of the stories linked to above “Retracted autism study an elaborate fraud…” is about Dr. Andrew Wakefield.  For another viewpoint on Dr. Wakefield, please see the following:

    This article by Mary Holland sums up the story quite well:
    the footnotes:

    See the “articles of interest” linked to here:

    Read the book Callous Disregard.

    See Dr. Wakefield speak for himself here:

    See this series on age of Autism:

    See the quite awful reporter Brian Deer on this video, and hear what the parents have to say about Wakefield, his colleagues and the treatment received by theri children.

  • Twyla

    When the GMC ruled against Dr. Andrew Wakefield and his esteemed colleagues John Walker-Smith and Simon Murch, it was remarkable the cacophony of nearly identical news stories heard round the world – especially in the U.S.  All reporters appeared to accept and regurgitate a common spin, without thinking for themselves and without independent research.

    In contrast, there has been a universal news blackout on Dr. Poul Thorsen, vaccine researcher.

    His former employer, Aarhus University in Denmark, issued a statement on 1/22/2010 saying:
    “Unfortunately, a considerable shortfall in funding at Aarhus University associated with the CDC grant was discovered. In investigating the shortfalls associated with the grant, DASTI and Aarhus University became aware of two alleged CDC funding documents as well as a letter regarding funding commitments allegedly written by Randolph B. Williams of CDC’s Procurement
    Grants Office which was used to secure advances from Aarhus University.
    Upon investigation by CDC, a suspicion arose that the documents are forgeries…

    “In March 2009, Dr. Thorsen resigned his faculty position at Aarhus Univer-
    sity. In the meantime, it has come to the attention of Aarhus University that
    Dr Thomsen has continued to act in such a manner as to create the impres-
    sion that he still retains a connection to Aarhus University after the termina-
    tion of his employment by the university. Furthermore, it has come to the at-
    tention of Aarhus University that Dr Poul Thorsen has held full-time positions
    at both Emory University and Aarhus University simultaneously. Dr Thorsens
    double Full-time employment was unauthorised by Aarhus University, and he
    engaged in this employment situation despite the express prohibition of Aarhus University.”

    On 4/13/2011 the U.S. Department of Justice issued a statement saying that:
    “POUL THORSEN, 49, of Denmark, has been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of wire fraud and money laundering based on a scheme to steal grant money the CDC had awarded to governmental agencies in Denmark for autism research…
    “In the 1990s, THORSEN worked as a visiting scientist at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Division of Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, when the CDC was soliciting grant applications for research related to infant disabilities.  THORSEN successfully promoted the idea of awarding the grant to Denmark and provided input and guidance for the research to be conducted.  From 2000 to 2009, the CDC awarded over $11 million to two governmental agencies in Denmark to study the relationship between autism and exposure to vaccines, between cerebral palsy and infection during pregnancy, and between childhood development and fetal alcohol exposure.  In 2002, THORSEN moved to Denmark and became the principal investigator for the grant, responsible for administering the research money awarded by the CDC…
    “The indictment charges THORSEN with 13 counts of wire fraud and 9 counts of money laundering. ..”

    You will see Dr. Thorsen’s name on some of the big studies alleged to disprove an autism/vaccine link such as this one: which is discussed here:

  • Twyla

    What was Dr. Poul Thorsen doing to earn his full-time salary from Emory University (which is closely affiliated with the CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, at the same time as he worked full time at Aarhus University in Denmark?  Evidently something so invisible that it was not noticed by Aarhus, and something confidential that he preferred not to tell his primary employer.

    Here are some articles about how he first came to be working as a researcher for the CDC:

    Poul Thorsen and his Mutating Resume

    So, where is Dr. Thorsen now?  In jail?  On trial?  Fired and in disgrace?  No, basically he has disappeared.  And the latest news is that the U.S. is not extraditing him from Denmark.

    Continued Collaboration between CDC and Danish Poul Thorsen

    Current news from Denmark:However, unbelievably, until this day of February 21, 2012, the Police of Eastern Jutland has not heard from Poul Thorsen concerning the amount of Public Money misappropriated from the Aarhus University’s CDC grant. Neither is Thorsen being actively pursued. And, at present the police don’t even know where the suspect is.According to police assistant, Lars Ove Jensen, from the police of Eastern Jutland the reason for the lack of action is. “We lack the information that should be the foundation for a hearing”.The information required by Danish police in order to properly investigate the case must come from the USA. However, as of today, no information has been delivered.Moreover, according to Jensen, international police collaboration sometimes takes a lot of time.As lengthy as the Poul Thorsen-case seems to be, it is not lacking in significance.According to the Police of Eastern Jutland, no less than the Danish government is waiting for an extradition request from the American federal government.

  • guest 33

    No one can take you serious if you are suggesting to look at a man who has been striped of his ability to practice medicine, who has his research discredited by the research community (those not with ties to any company).

  • guest 33

    And, my dear my2cents, your daughter is the reason why you need the herd immunity.  She would never be required to take something she is allergic too.  But she will require a sufficient number around her to be immunized to help prevent her these diseases.

  • Megb8454

    Once you watch a child die from a disease that should have been irradicated from the planet, it’s pretty easy to decide on this issue.  I have had that unpleasant experience.  Get your kids immunized.  I actually  like how pediatricians are now beginning to refuse to take on patients whose parents refused to get them immunized. 

  • Megb8454

    I research cancer incidence, and you’d change your mind on the HPV vaccine if you saw the huge number of young women, a lot just entering their true reproductive years, who are developing cervical cancer and then having a lifetime left to deal with it.  The pathology reveals that the vast majority of cases are associated with high risk strains of HPV.  It should not only be given to girls, but to boys as well. 

  • Nancy

    Once you watch your typically developing child lose all his speech and stop recognizing you after suffering seizures post multiple vaccines then tell me why I cannot delay vaccines for his brother

  • Twyla

    Are all the diseases we vaccinate against deadly?

    Sometimes people die from vaccines, too.

    This isn’t so simple, not black & white, not all-or-nothing.

  • Twyla

    From AoA FB page:  
    Updated comparison schedule. There’s two ways of looking at it: 1983 – 10 shots; 2012 – 36-38 shots (shows almost four fold increase). Or 1983– 22 doses; 2012– 115 doses (shows almost five fold increase). I suspect the second view is more accurate because for instance the Rotateq is pentavalent and each separate antigen/dose is sufficient to trigger the immune system against that individual strain and counts as a full vaccine.

    Do we really know what we’re doing?  Do we really understand the impact on developing immune systems and nervous systems?  Why is this generation of children suffering from higher rates of disorders such as these?:

    Immune Systems Increasingly On Attack – Washington Post
    The number of American children and adolescents treated for bipolar disorder increased 40-fold from 1994 to 2003, researchers report today in the most comprehensive study of the controversial diagnosis. found that the rate of colitis increased from 1.8 cases per 100,000 children in 1996, to 4.9 per 100,000 in 2006.

    “Fifty years ago, IBD was almost exclusively diagnosed in adults. These days, treating children with IBD is business as usual in our clinics.”Doctors see more children with inflammatory bowel diseaseOnce a medical rarity in children, inflammatory bowel disease today is increasingly common in kids, but many of them may not be diagnosed in a timely manner, according to experts from the Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center at Johns Hopkins Children’s. sclerosis has long been regarded as a young person’s disease with the majority of people being diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40.
    However, younger sufferers are now coming to light, and 5% of the total number of MS cases involve children under 16.

  • Twyla

    Oops, forgot this one:
    UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute study shows California’s autism increase not due to better counting, diagnosis

  • Anne

    I am so happy that Moyers & Company is on the air but I was shocked to hear the comments on vaccination exemption and I was actually quite upset at first until I realized that Mr. Moyers just isn’t familiar with the problems and is thinking about the total good to society.  I could go on and on trying to make all this known but there is a very excellent article that covers this very well in the Journal of Natural Food and Health – this is the link:   This article starts by explaining that Herd Immunity is actually only the result of NATURAL immunity and goes from there.  I hope that you will read this article and give it a fair chance in your understanding of the increasing dangers we are being exposed to that the human body has not evolved to handle.

  • Helene

    Our children and grandchildren have no idea of the consequences of the diseases they can prevent by a simple injection.  My grandfather was left partially paralyzed by the great influenza epidemic.  His inability to provide for his family had far-reaching effects on all of us.  My childhood friend Cynthia contracted polio in the 40’s and was one of the lucky ones — she had to wear an iron brace on her leg for the rest of her life.  There were no vaccines when I was a child and we went through the agonies of chicken pox, German measles and mumps, which left some males sterile and unborn babies born with birth defects.  This generation of young parents doesn’t realize how lucky they are to be able to immunize their children

  • Anonymous

    I know pediatricians who have created two waiting rooms. One for children who have been immunized and one for those who are not yet old enough to be immunized due to concerns about the transmission of these diseases. Some pediatricians have stopped treating children of parents who fail to have their children immunized.
    I think your statement so generalizes pediatricians  as to be offensive to those who work tirelessly to prevent these terrible diseases

  • Linda Rolf

    I heard there are a lot of harmful side effects from this vaccine. We need all the information. It might have been introduced to the marketplace prematurely (or in error).

  • Linda Rolf

    There should be a size limit to a post!  This is like to filibusting on congress!

  • Linda Rolf

    Talk about misinformation! You are a regular media blitz–but I am sure you have had lots of practice defending your “cause.”

  • Linda Rolf

    Were you all alerted to divebomb this site because it is an intelligent discussion on a topic that has been highjacked by conspiracy theorists? 

  • Amaragrace

    Here is some ‘financial-interest-pushing’ in comparison to Dr. Mercola:

    How Independent Are Vaccine Defenders?
    World Vaccine Congress 
    Do you want to meet over 750 senior vaccine professionals to forge new partnerships and discover new commercial opportunities?For the 12th year running delegates from all parts of the vaccine value chain come to World Vaccine Congress Washington to quickly identify, engage and enter into strategic relationships that drive their businesses successfully forward. Investment and collaboration opportunities developed in prior congresses have produced many highly successful business partnerships. 
    Joe Mercola isn’t on the speaker list, btw.

    Vaccine Pipeline  “No longer the unprofitable runt of the pharmaceutical family, vaccines are fast becoming the industry’s breadwinner” New Scientist Sept. 2011

    Pipeline of Vaccines Are We Making The Grade With Our Children (history of this plan & connect-the-dots among the profiteers)

    7c  Should Participation in Vaccine Trials be Mandatory Jan. 2012 ( AMA virtual mentor call for compulsory testing participation)

    National Vaccine Plan Pitching the Nat’l. Vaccination Plan at the  World Vaccine Conference to enact the vaccination dragnet legislation, the 6-& 7 figure yearly pricetag of lobbying-&-hob-nobbying, writing their own legislation & handing it to state officials in 50 states is definitely a write-off to the paying members…ALEC is a non-profit:ALEC; American Legislative Exchange Council 
    corporate (pharmaceutical industry +) lobbying in the 21st century So…Dr. Mercola is obviously a small-time mom & pop compared to these money-junkies.  I actively support your right to choose to take vaccinations…in fact, you can have my share of the toxic soup injections…be my guest…enjoy & be at  peace with it. Just show me the same courtesy in my choice not to. It’s the Human right to *choose*…to decide whether to accept or decline drugging that’s being targeted here…does the ‘Nuremberg Code’ not ring any bells for anyone here? It isn’t just my right that’s being targeted, it’s yours too…Is your right to choose for yourself not precious to you?PS…pHARMa profits billions from treatments that address the permanent damage & carnage that result from obsessive vaccination. That’s a whole other ‘dot’ that I can help you examine & connect if you can’t find it yourself.

  • Emel

    The autism connection has become a red herring in the vaccine debate. There are other ways vaccines damage children (additives in some include aluminum, formaldehyde, and antibiotics). Read about Simian Virus 40, for example, a documented case of how vaccine contamination damaged thousands of polio vaccine recipients. Also, many outbreaks of measles have occurred in vaccinated groups. I was surprised that Bill Moyers neglected to mention that.

  • jam

    Many studies have shown that the amount of aluminum and other preservatives in vaccines are far less than what the average person is exposed to in our environment, water and food supply.

  • jam

    Yes, they don’t realize that the diseases these vaccines protect against are much more deadly and agonizing that any percieved problem from the vaccine itself.

  • jam

    We have no NATURAL immunity to these diseases. The only way to get natural immunity is to contract the disease. Do your research on these diseases. Look at pictures of people who have had these diseases. You would want your child to contract these often times deadly, debilitating diseases that cause deformity, birth defects, blindness, deafness, amoung other things? Just so they could have “NATURAL” immunity? Herd immunity is a scientifically proven phenomenon. Where is Dr. Blaylock’s proof that it’s not?

  • Company2222

     Tetyana Obukhanych, Phd of Immunology will provide you with the research you desire.    Read her work, Vaccine Illusions.  Our natural immunity has been blasted by the vaccines.  Herd immunity does not exist scientifically.   Dr. Baylock is a neurologist…his specialty is looking at what these toxins are doing to  our children, ie rates on increasing autism, developmental disabilities, etc.   I would much rather a child develops Natural Immunity.  Moreso, I would NEVER want another family to “get” autism or some other side effect (or death) from vaccines.  Let’s refocus our energies on health…not death.

  • Cathy


    I’m a big fan, but I urge you to take a closer look at vaccines, especially the current schedule for infants.  I’m the parent of a child with autism.  Would I vaccinate again? Yes, but selectively.  I’d most definitely skip the Hep B series until my child was at least 5 or 6 yrs. old.  I’d completely forgo the varicella vaccine.  I would also suggest a return to the single measles, mumps, rubella vaccines instead of the MMR.  Three live viruses at once may be a bit too much for some children.

    Also, please take a look at the case of Prof. John Walker- Smith.

    Finally, to those who say vaccines don’t make money for Pharma, “Vaccines are expected to generate $21.5 billion in sales by 2012, according to Sanofi-Aventis SA, a leading vaccine maker.”

  • Cathy

    For anyone who wants to understand what happened to John Walker-Smith (and Andrew Wakefield), it’s worth reading this post from Dan Olmsted which includes part of the judge’s ruling:

    From the Editor: Consecutivity

    A big fat headache for the Lancet,
    Brian Deer, the BMJ and Dr. Godlee is the way the Walker-Smith ruling
    demolishes all their faux outrage over whether the children were a
    consecutive case series. They were. Judge Mitting: On the premise that
    the panel was right to find that the Lancet paper was addressed to the
    general reader and that it was the interpretation of the general reader
    which mattered, I am as well qualified as the panel to construe its
    meaning. Further, I am entitled to and do, apply the familiar canon of
    construction used by judges in construing documents: to read and
    construe the whole document, not just selected words. Thus construed,
    this paper does not bear the meaning put upon it by the panel. The
    phrase “consecutively referred” means no more than that the children
    were referred successively, rather than as a single batch, to the
    Department of Paediatric Gastroenterology. The words did not imply
    routine referral. The paragraph from which the words “a self-referred
    group” was taken reads:

    “We describe a pattern of colitis and
    ileal-lymphoid-nodular hyperplasia in children with developmental
    disorders. Intestinal and behavioural pathologies may have occurred
    together by chance, reflecting a selection bias in a self-referred
    group; however the uniformity of the intestinal pathological changes and
    the fact that previous studies have found intestinal dysfunction in
    children with autistic-spectrum disorders, suggests that the connection
    is real and reflects a unique disease process.”

    The general reader of that paragraph
    would note the author’s caution about the possibility of selection bias
    in the self-referred group. Taken together with the comments already
    cited made about the temporal coincidence of the onset of symptoms and
    MMR vaccination in the case of eight children, the author has made it
    clear that this was not a routine referral. It was a referral generated
    by the concerns of parents about a possible link. The statement made by
    the panel in paragraph 32c that it was Professor Walker-Smith who had
    described the referral process in the Lancet paper as “routine” was
    wrong. It put its stretched meaning of the wording of part of the paper
    into his mouth and then found that it was irresponsible and misleading.
    This was not a legitimate finding.


  • Anonymous

    FBI: Elan Pharmaceuticals Pleads Guilty, Sentenced for Off-Label Marketing of Zonegran
    U.S. Attorney’s Office, February 28, 2011

  • Denise

    Dear Bill,
    I am a close watcher of your journalism, and have been for years. I was so excited to see you were back  on the air. I admire you and your work tremendously.

    For the first time ever, I found your views and mine to be in complete contrast, while viewing your recent program on vaccinations. I was shocked by your position there.

    Bill, for the first time, I feel you have not done your homework on a particular subject, and instead took  on an easy and subjective position regarding vaccinations. 

    I urge you to  look more carefully into all sides of the matter. There is plenty of material out there challenging the status quo views on the safety, necessity and efficacy, and even the history of vaccines.

    Bill, I love you for your investigative journalism. But this just sounded like you were regurgitating old propoganda.

    Please don’t take a short cut on this subject. Apply your investigative approach to this matter as well (thoroughly, please). It is too important a subject to do a shallow report on.

    Please reconsider, and do some serious reading on the subject. Then perhaps you will do another report, one that is far more insightful, and in-depth, showing  the quality of work you produce that we count on and love. 


  • Twyla

    Dear Mr. Moyer, 
    I hope you saw Anne Dachel’s excellent article today:

    An Open Letter to Bill Moyers on When The Next Contagion Strikes

  • Twyla

    Journalism is indeed “in Profound Crisis”.  I described in prior comments how Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s story has been universally distorted by mass media, while Dr. Poul Thorsen’s story is completely ignored.  

    Now another incredibly important story is being ignored:  the exoneration of Wakefield’s colleague Dr. John Walker Smith:Co-Author of Lancet MMR-Autism Study Exonerated on All Charges of Professional Misconduct”Dr. John Walker-Smith, considered the father of pediatric gastroenterology, has today been restored to his much-deserved reputation of high esteem. His appeal of the U.K. General Medical Council’s 2010 decision to remove his license for serious professional misconduct has been quashed in its entirety. This decision raises questions about the validity of the 2010 GMC proceeding in general.”The GMC proceeding was a multi-year, multi-million dollar prosecution against Drs. Wakefield, Walker-Smith, and Murch. It related to a controversial 1998 study published inThe Lancet suggesting a possible link between autism, the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine and bowel disease. Based on the GMC prosecution, both Drs. Walker-Smith and Wakefield lost their licenses to practice and the Lancet article was officially retracted. The GMC alleged that the physician-authors had failed to obtain necessary ethical clearances and that they had subjected the twelve children in the study to unnecessary medical procedures. “Justice Mitting, reviewing Dr. Walker-Smith’s appeal in the High Court of Justice, Queen’s Bench Division, Administrative Court, found that the GMC’s conclusions were ‘based on inadequate and superficial reasoning’ and that ‘the finding of serious professional misconduct and the sanction of erasure are both quashed.’”… the full text of the decision here:

  • Twyla

    I don’t know why sometimes after posting my comments all the lines run together.  Oh, well…

  • Twyla

    I’m trying again to post the link to Anne Dachel’s excellent article:

  • Twyla

    And here is a better link to the EBCALA article about the court’s decision absolving John Walker Smith.

  • Twyla

    Dr. Poul Thorsen is facing charges of tax evasion in Denmark.  His defense is asking for the court to dismiss the charges.
    “In the indictment it is stated, that Poul Thorsen during the years 2001-2005 evaded income from fees, salary or the like for 6,430,768 DKK.”By these illegal acts the Danish tax authority was evaded an income of 3,470,020 DKK. “The charged is furthermore accused of – on purpose – during 2001-2005 to have evaded the Danish tax authority 514,455 DKK in contribution to the labour market…”

  • Mcmike

     “Far less” does not mean harmless, and incidental environmental exposure does not necessarily justify deliberate medical exposure.

    Also, the “average person” is fully developed and weighs well over 100 pounds.  Meanwhile, the average vaccine recipient weighs less than 20 pounds and is in the middle of developing immune and brain systems.

  • Deb

    If pharmacies did not make a profit there would be no vaccines to protect us.  There would be no investors.  Why do we expect them not to make profits?  None of us would ever do the work we do if we were not making a profit.  I am grateful to pay the moderately small price for vaccines.  About ten percent of the cases of measles ends up in the hospital, costing thousands of dollars.  I endured the diseases as a child and I have cared for a child that got encephalitis from chicken pox.  Thank God for vaccination; and thanks to the people who have prepared academically for years and years to give us the science to make it possible for us to protect out children.

  • Deb

    Check out the stats and the damage done in the countries where vaccination is not routinely given.

  • theoldman

    And the judge goes on to say that in no way does this affect the conlusion
    that there is no connection between vaccines and autism. 


    This was merely a ruling that Dr. John Walker had acted in good faith, even
    if Dr. Wakefield hadn’t and the Dr. Wakefield’s, “study”, is still
    hopelessly flawed.

  • chrys12

     Excellent comments..I do hope Mr Moyers actually reads it! Initially was surprised at his editorial and seeming lack of thinking outside the box…in the past he’s done great investigative reporting.
    Perhaps I assumed he was more awake and aware than is the case. We shall see what’s next when the GMO topic or something similar  meme currently being pushed on the public by the elitist regime crops up on his show.

  • chrys12

     Linda you assume that ‘if only those Indians had been properly vaccinated’ all would fair well…and they’d live happily ever after.
    Really try to LISTEN to some of the things written in these posts. Don’t retreat into some blanking out position and just call us all conspiracy theorists. Do some research for yourself.  Think for yourself. Consider the bigger picture. Follow the money and power games. These posts are by people who have learned how to do that.  I am very excited to see the number of people who are awake to what’s going on in Big pharma and the often reductionist patriarchal medical system (which I worked in for 20 years so I can speak from experience), as well as big oil, big banks, and big agra.
    Don’t give your power away.

  • chrys12

     Oh here a couple other questions you can ask your medical provider:
    1) Can you absolutely guarantee the safety of this/these injection/s? Would you sign off on that please?
    2) Vaccines are tested for effectiveness by measuring antibodies, even though this has never been proven to be a measure of immunity.  But antibody response to vaccine does not equal immunity or protection.
    Are you aware of cases of immunized children actually later contracting the disease they were supposed to be immunized for?
    For example whooping cough? There are recent cases of pertussis noted in children immunized for same.
    An Advisory Committee Statement (ACS)
    National Advisory Committee on immunization (NACI) STATEMENT ON pertussis vaccine
    … There is no known direct correlation between levels of specific pertussis antibodies and protection against pertussis.

  • chrys12

    OOPS I hit Liked when I meant reply.
    No helfk, it’s not that millions of these people are conspiring together; they go along with general consensus because it’s easier, or more acceptable, or more profitable to be mainstream than take a less popular position and stand out from the herd.

    Those who control the media (as a few major corporations do) can strongly influence the general population towards their own interests (control – power-money).

    As for Pedes md’s – a large part of their revenue – I seen stats of 50% + – is from immunizations. AND if they did not support vaccinations – they would be ostracized or even put their licenses in jeopardy.

  • CT teacher

    Bill-I wonder if your age has contributed to your belief that vaccines are miracle drugs and absolutely safe.  I ,too, am an older American who thought the same way until I began to delve into the issue.  I was horrified when I discovered that there has never been any scientific proof that vaccines are safe .  It was just assumed that they were.  You will not be able to find 1 study that proves the longterm safety of any vaccine.  In addition you will find that those of us who received the very first polio vaccines were given vaccines contaminated with the SV 40 virus, known to cause cancer.  Do you wonder why 1 in 3 Americans will die of cancer?  Read The Virus and the Vaccine by Schumacher and you will begin to understand the scope of the problem.  To assume that the manipulation of the immune system by injecting so many foreign substances into the human body, particularly in infants, is  without unintended consequences is foolhardy at best.  I have been involved in public education for more than 40 years and I can assure you that the health of our children has deteriorated badly.  In addition to chronic health problems, neurological and psychiatric problems are widespread in our schools.  Autism is everywhere today.  This was not the case previously. Something has to be causing these problems.  It seems that looking at the vaccine program is a good place to start searching for the cause.  It cannot be a coincidence that the rise in chronic health problems in children corresponds perfectly with  the expanded vaccine schedule.  Observation is still part of the scientific method,is it not? 
    In my opinion, it is shameful that the medical profession ignores and criticizes the parents of autistic children.  Parents know their children better than anyone.  Doctors used to know this.  Now, they refuse to listen to them or to help them.  Shame on the medical profession.
    I have always respected you and I love your TV show, but you allowed your belief system to prejudice you in favor of vaccinatiion without properly delving into the other side of the argument.  My advice to you—interview parents of autistic children, interview Dr. Andrew Wakefield, observe in the school,.read books about problems with vaccines such as the one I suggested, talk to Robert Kennedy Jr, actually read the studies that they say prove vaccines are safe, talk to doctors who have safety concerns with the shots and then do another show that presents the other point of view.  Good luck and good reading!

  • Dr. T

    I agree with you completely Denise.
    I am an MD finishing my masters in public health and my studies have taken me to a very dark place where vaccine policy is so biased and not based on any real science. FACA laws are violated at the FDA and CDC to the point where voting committees are almost all on industry payroll.
    placebos used to compare adverse events are known toxins in order to hide the deaths and morbidity  of the vaccine in question.
    there has been no study unlinking vaccines with autism. In order for that to happen, we’d need a study looking at autism rates between vaccinated vs unvaccinated children and that has just not happened due to Dr. Insell defunding that proposed study because he was worried about the “optics” the study would create.
    Bill, very disappointing and totally unscientific of you to not do your due diligence.
    Look at the sources of your studies and throw out studies funded by the industry or  by departments totally funded by the industry and you’re left with studies showing vaccines to be nowhere as efficacious as they claim and infinitely more dangerous than people realize.

  • Twyla

    Mr. Moyers –
    The movie The Greater Good is playing on Current TV this Saturday 3/24 at 1 p.m. EST, 10:00 a.m. PST.  I hope you will have a chance to see it.

  • Sallyberlin

    Clarance Darrow, the famous lawyer from the beginning of the 20th century asked  if vaccinations really work, then those vaccinated are immune to the disease right? So what does it matter if some people choose to go unvaccinated?

  • chrys12

    Oh Bill – Dear Bill.
    Appears you’ve chosen the blue pill.

    or shot, as it were.

  • Richard Feuille

     Because some children don’t respond to the vaccine and are still susceptible and some, like kids with cancer and some with immune deficiencies, can’t be immunized.  So, the unimmunized kids put others at risk.  

  • an old doctor

     God help us if such are the opinions of new doctors.

  • Caleb25

    I can’t believe that if you are an MD getting a MPH you would not understand the value and importance of immunizations. 

  • Nurse C

    Bill – As a public health nurse, I think this is great. Very practical. I would urge people to think very carefully and logically while determining their stance on the issue, and do some digging for facts that can be verified rather than relying on emotionally-charged anecdotes. Vaccines, just like any medication or treatment, are not perfect, but they have done an incredible and undeniable amount of good.

    The above link just one good resource for gathering further information. I encourage anyone with questions about vaccines to take a look.

    Also check out Do Vaccines Cause That?! a book by Martin G. Myers, M.D. and Diego Pineda.

  • Nurse C

    Are you worried about thimerosal, or the MMR vaccine?

    “Eight large studies in Sweden, Denmark, the United States, Great Britain, and Canada – conducted by different investigators, employing different techniques, looking at different populations – consistently found no evidence of an association between thimerosal and autism.” -Martin G. Myers, M.D. and Diego Pineda in Do Vaccines Cause That?! (I’d recommend giving this book a read).

    As for MMR, Wakefield’s study could never be replicated or proven by any other scientific study, and has been completely discredited (and was so corrupt to begin with).

  • Nurse C

    Vaccines are provided to children 18 and under for free if they want it and can’t afford it. I work in a public health clinic and we do not generate a large profit by any means.

  • Sallyberlin

    A person may face more risk from the vaccinated than the unvaccinated.  After a child has an immunization, they do something called “viral shredding” for two weeks. Those are the ones someone with a compromised immune system needs to stay away from.  Children are given a lifetime of immunity if allowed to contract the mild illnesses of childhood.  The shot wears off, putting the public more at risk.

  • Twyla

    Mr. Moyers -I hope you will have a chance to see this recent press conference.  Several remarkable people speak out with great intelligence, passion, and clarity regarding this crazy situation we find ourselves in today – with a rate of 1 in 88 children on the autistic spectrum.

  • Jessjames28

    what a new doctor who stands for what he thinks is right. How is that bad? I would want to know both sides of what shot is being put in me or my child. people die thats life . the drs job is to tell us the truth of what he thinks is best wrong or right. Then it should be our right to make that choice.

  • Sallyberlin

    Nevertheless, the pharmaceutical companies get paid from the government through medicaid rather than an insurance company or out of pocket.

  • Victoria Kelley

    It is obvious to me, this country has trusted a broken process.  It has taken a good number of years, but it is finally rearing its ugly head.  Our medical system has been infected with a greedy pharma market.  Our safety and well being is the furthest thing from anyone’s mind, that is pertaining to those who have their hands in it.

  • Unsanitorial

    This site recently came to my attention.
    Now if this is the way we do tap water with the explanation of enamel hardening how much faith and confidence can we have in immunizations?
    This subject used to interest only members of the John Birch society, but now it concerns us all. Would you willingly drink toxic effluent from phosphate mining ? Certain authorities recommend it.

  • Unsanitorial

    I really hate that you all had to jump on Bill Moyers for his poorly researched editorial. What I wonder is who put him up to it. What do you think about that V. Kelley?

  • Ren

    I agree with your post Stephanie. Definitely not a black and white issue, just as not all the facts are known. New information continues to come out which should sober those who feel they have all the answers.

  • Lee Jankowski

    I find this very helpful in understanding the issues involved and how important it is to look more deeply and more skillfully at the issues of the day. I remember playing with other children who had measles and various other ailments when I was a child, then going through it myself. Being sick at times seemed to be part of growing up. Now it seems to be one enemy in a greater war against anything in life that affects us in a negative way.

  • Michele Hogan

    The thing is: we define ‘the autism spectrum’ and then announce how many children fit that definition. I know several children ‘on the spectrum’ who seem perfectly within normal limits to me, when ‘normal’ is defined broadly. That is, they make eye contact, interact verbally, etc., and are ‘on the spectrum’ because of things like getting easily overwhelmed or preferring to play alone. It used to be that such kids were ‘shy’ or ‘quirky’ or ‘high strung’ or ‘loners’ — now they’re all “on the spectrum” – a phrase that didn’t even exist a generation ago – and we’re panicking over why. Perhaps the answer is more in how narrow the norm has become than in anything else.

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately, they are not mild illnesses of childhood. They can and do cause serious damage and even kill. The vaccines may have a low failure rate but their success rate is extremely high. The odds are highly in favor of vaccination to protect both children and adults. I nearly died and was left with vision problems from measles, my brother left sterile by mumps, and years later the chicken pox virus caused a painful debilitating case of shingles. I wish these vaccines had existed when I was a young child.

  • Patricia Seagrove

    The next time a mother loses her job because her child comes down with a vaccine preventable disease, will all of the people opposing vaccination help her get back on her feet? Please, don’t tell me that FMLA protects us, it doesn’t. When you return, you can be fired on any pretext because most states are right-to-work.

  • Patricia Seagrove

    So, I get to lose my job and face hospital bills because my 18-month old comes down with measles? This happens to people, The FMLA has more holes in it than swiss cheese.