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Why The Ongoing Thimerosal (Mercury) Travesty Needs To End

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The lessons learned from the ongoing saga of thimerosal are significant to all who care about vaccine safety, want justice for the injured, and to prevent future harm. The government has said they corrected the thimerosal issue and want us to believe the case is closed. But has the public been fooled with swapping one heavy metal toxicity for another? While thimerosal is still in some flu shots and is especially harmful to pregnant women, infants and children, there are increasing amounts of aluminum exposures from vaccines as more shots are added to the schedule. Like early reports about mercury, now children’s toxic profiles show alarming amounts of aluminum. And the problems don’t end with heavy metals. There are other vaccine contaminants that can cause harm, like retroviruses, formaldehyde, and aborted human fetal tissue. In short, we are in desperate need of an agency that can protect our citizens, especially children, from vaccine injuries. How can the controversy and handling of thimerosal-containing vaccines instruct us as we move forward for real reform?

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Thimerosal is the infamous mercury-containing preservative in use, to this day, in some vaccines and also in dozens of other pharmaceutical products approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).1-3 Public health agencies, government regulators and medical trade groups have repeatedly declared thimerosal to be safe,4,5 but the published peer-reviewed science argues that nothing could be further from the truth. For anyone who bothers to investigate thimerosal’s appalling record, there is a vast, still accumulating and compelling body of research that contradicts the public health establishment’s deceptive safety claims.

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Thimerosal is almost 50 percent ethylmercury by weight. Ethylmercury is an organic mercury compound with toxicity mechanisms similar to methylmercury6 (the hazardous type of mercury in seafood). The danger posed by both types of mercury was evident in earlier eras when fungicides containing either ethyl- or methylmercury poisoned farmers, sometimes on a large scale, from the 1950s through the 1970s.7,8 Of the two compounds, the ethylmercury in vaccines is far more toxic to and persistent in the brain, where it has a propensity to accumulate as inorganic mercury,9,10 with an estimated half-life of as long as twenty-seven years.11

HISTORY OF THIMEROSAL

Before the invention of modern antibiotics and antiseptics, physicians experimented with mercury-containing compounds to try to stave off microbial pathogens. Thimerosal was born of those efforts. Dr. Morris Kharasch, a university chemist and Eli Lilly fellow, developed thimerosal and filed for a patent in June, 1929, describing thimerosal as an “alkyl mercuric sulfur compound” with antibacterial properties. Eli Lilly and Company registered thimerosal under the trade name Merthiolate later that year.

Eli Lilly researchers reported in 1931 that animals seemed to tolerate high doses of thimerosal. However, many of those animals died of evident mercury poisoning just days after the study ended. Also noteworthy is the fact that in early animal toxicity studies and many later research efforts, researchers did not assess socialization behaviors or perform cognition tests. In other words, they did not consider the possibility of mercury-induced brain damage.

During this same time period, the Eli Lilly researchers reported on the first injections of thimerosal into humans. The unlucky recipients of large doses of Merthiolate were twenty-two patients hospitalized during a 1929 epidemic of meningococcal meningitis in Indianapolis. The thimerosal had no apparent therapeutic benefit, and all twenty-two patients died—seven of them within one day of thimerosal administration. The researchers nevertheless described the experiment as a success, and a published paper stated that “these large doses did not produce any anaphylactoid or shock symptoms” (neither of which is associated with toxic mercury exposure). However, the clinician who treated the meningitis patients apparently was not convinced of thimerosal’s efficacy, stating, “Beneficial effects of the drug were not definitely proven.” Moreover, any short-term neurological or other deleterious effects of the thimerosal would likely have been masked by or attributed to the patients’ meningitis infections.

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For decades, Eli Lilly promoted its confident version of the Indianapolis results as evidence of thimerosal’s safety, paving the way for thimerosal’s inclusion in various antiseptic products, including nasal sprays, eyewashes, vaginal spermicides and diaper rash treatments. This escalation of thimerosal use in consumer products occurred despite numerous studies from the 1930s showing that thimerosal was not, in fact, “highly germicidal” and actually was more effective at destroying human cells than killing pathogens. Thimerosal never measured up to its supposed raison d’être of safely preventing microbial contamination, and studies continued to chalk up clear and unequivocal evidence that thimerosal was deadly to human cells.

THIMEROSAL IN VACCINES

Nonetheless, starting in the 1930s, pharmaceutical companies began to use thimerosal in multidose vials of vaccine to extend shelf life and lessen the risk of bacterial and fungal contamination that arises when several doses are drawn from the same vial. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines allow health providers to administer extra doses from multidose vials up until the printed expiration date “if the vial has been stored correctly and the vaccine is not visibly contaminated.”12 (The CDC does not say what to do about contamination that may not be “visible.”)

Through the 1970s and 1980s, children in the U.S. generally received eight injections of three types of vaccines—oral polio, measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) and diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccine—in their first eighteen months. The DTP vaccine contained fifty micrograms of thimerosal per shot, translating into one hundred micrograms of mercury exposure by eighteen months. In 1986, after more and more people began suing vaccine manufacturers for serious vaccine injuries primarily related to the DTP vaccine, Congress took the unprecedented step of granting vaccine manufacturers full immunity from lawsuits. The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 established a compensation program “as an alternative remedy to judicial action for specified vaccine-related injuries.”13 By making it impossible for vaccine-injured plaintiffs to sue pharmaceutical companies, the result—whether intended or unintended—was to eliminate any financial incentive to make vaccine safety a priority.

By making it impossible for vaccine-injured plaintiffs to sue pharmaceutical companies, the result—whether intended or unintended—was to eliminate any financial incentive to make vaccine safety a priority.

Beginning in 1989, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) began steadily increasing the types and total number of vaccines required for school attendance, including thimerosal-containing vaccines. By 1999, the expanded vaccine schedule called for children to receive nineteen vaccine injections by age two, eleven of which contained thimerosal. Children born in the 1990s could be injected, therefore, with up to 237.5 micrograms of mercury by their second birthday, and as much as 62.5 micrograms at a single doctor’s visit.

In my book, Thimerosal: Let the Science Speak,14 I quote school nurse Patti White, who noticed, early on, the vaccine-induced mercury overload in young children. In 1999, White testified before Congress about the thimerosal-containing hepatitis B vaccine administered to newborns:

The elementary grades are overwhelmed with children who have symptoms of neurological and/or immune system damage: epilepsy, seizure disorders, various kinds of palsies, autism, mental retardation, learning disabilities, juvenile-onset diabetes, asthma, vision/hearing loss, and a multitude of new conduct/behavior disorders. We [school nurses] have come to believe the hepatitis B vaccine is an assault on a newborn’s developing neurological and immune system. Vaccines are supposed to be making us healthier. However, in twenty-five years of nursing I have never seen so many damaged, sick kids. Something very, very wrong is happening to our children.

School nurses were not the only ones to call attention to the mounting evidence that thimerosal-containing vaccines were having neurotoxic effects. In response to pressure from Congress and the public, the FDA conducted a review in the late 1990s that found that the amount of mercury in the childhood vaccine schedule surpassed some federal safety guidelines. Accordingly, the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) issued a lukewarm statement in 1999 about thimerosal’s potential risks. The statement’s authors called for the phase-out of thimerosal-containing vaccines “as expeditiously as possible,“ while still avowing that “the large risks of not vaccinating children far outweigh the unknown and probably much smaller risk, if any, of cumulative exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines over the first 6 months of life.”15

THE SIMPSONWOOD CABAL

A year later (June 7-8, 2000), the CDC convened a secret scientific review panel of over fifty experts who began backpedaling from the AAP-USPHS pronouncement.16 The group that met at the Simpsonwood Retreat Center near Atlanta included high-ranking CDC and FDA representatives, state and international public health officials, vaccine company representatives and others. At the outset, the meeting’s chair, immunologist Richard Johnston, expressed regret that the group had not met to consider the data sooner, “in advance of…the public health decisions [to phase out thimerosal] that were made last summer.” Further betraying his preconceptions, Johnston stated that there was “no evidence of a problem, only a theoretical concern that young infants’ developing brains were being exposed to an organomercurial.”

The group then heard a presentation by Thomas Verstraeten, a research fellow at CDC who subsequently went on to a decade-long career at GlaxoSmithKline. Verstraeten had been working up a study using data from the Vaccine Safety Datalink (established by the CDC in 1990 to study rare and serious vaccine adverse events), scrutinizing data from roughly one hundred and ten thousand children born between 1992 and 1997 and enrolled at U.S. health maintenance organizations. The study sought to assess the relationship between thimerosal exposure (at one, two, three and six months of age) and neurological damage. After the initial findings showed a possible causal link, Verstraeten reworked the study design and analyses several times prior to Simpsonwood.

Despite these apparent attempts to make the association “go away,” Verstraeten was obligated to present the troublesome finding of linear and statistically significant dose-related relationships between thimerosal exposure and neurodevelopmental disorders to the group assembled at Simpsonwood.

Although differing viewpoints emerged, many of the Simpsonwood attendees were less than persuaded by Verstraeten’s results. Some, such as John Clements of the World Health Organization’s Expanded Program on Immunization, focused more on the public relations implications. Clements stated:

I hear the majority of the consultants say…that they are not convinced there is a causality direct link between Thimerosal and various neurological outcomes. …The research results have to be handled, and even if this committee decides that there is no association…through freedom of information that will be taken by others and will be used in other ways beyond the control of this group. […] My mandate…is to make sure…that 100,000,000 are immunized with DTP, Hepatitis B and if possible Hib, this year, next year and for many years to come, and that will have to be with Thimerosal-containing vaccines unless a miracle occurs and an alternative is found quickly and is tried and found to be safe. […] How will it be presented to a public and a media that is hungry for selecting the information they want to use for whatever means they have in store for them? …I wonder how on earth you are going to handle it from here.

Despite the clear association between thimerosal exposure and neurodevelopmental disorders demonstrated by the Verstraeten study, many of the industry and public health scientists present tried to minimize the implications by voting them away. When polled at the end of the day’s discussion, most of them voted to rate the link between thimerosal and neurodevelopmental disorders as “weak.” In his summary comments as meeting rapporteur, Paul Stehr-Green described Verstraeten’s results as being only weakly indicative of a safety signal—defined as “information on a new or known adverse event that may be caused by a medicine.”17 While acknowledging that the signal “deserved further investigation and…raised some perhaps disquieting possibilities,” Stehr-Green concluded that “there was not anything close to sufficient evidence to support a finding of a causal relationship.”

Pediatrician William Weil observed that “the number of kids getting help in special education is growing nationally and state by state at a rate we have not seen before.”

Attendee William Weil (a pediatrician representing the AAP) noted that even accepting Stehr-Green’s assertion that Verstraeten hadn’t proven a link to neurodevelopmental disorders, it was alarming that he hadn’t disproven it, and there was insufficient evidence, he pointed out, to reject a possible causal relationship. He stated that “the possibility that the associations could be causal has major significance for public and professional acceptance of thimerosal-containing vaccines.” Weil also observed that “the number of kids getting help in special education is growing nationally and state by state at a rate we have not seen before.” Another of his observations was that thimerosal in vaccines represented “repeated acute exposures” and that “the earlier you work with the central nervous system, the more likely you are to run into a sensitive period for one of these [neurodevelopmental] effects.” Finally, Weil pointed out the limitations of epidemiological studies, calling for further indepth animal and developmental neurotoxicity studies and stating: “Some of the really gutsy questions from a person who is very concerned about neurodevelopment cannot be answered out of this.” At the same time, Weil cautioned others not to overly minimize or “play with” the VSD data. Weil was the only reviewer present to rate the association between thimerosal and the neurodevelopmental outcomes as strong, giving it a four on a scale of one to six (where one was weakest).

…CDC moved aggressively to hastily gin up five poorly designed epidemiological studies to disprove the link between thimerosal and neurodevelopmental disorders.

The groupthink on display at Simpsonwood primarily illustrates that most public health and medical experts were itching to exonerate thimerosal, regardless of the science, and continue with business as usual. Following the Simpsonwood meeting, CDC moved aggressively to hastily gin up five poorly designed epidemiological studies18-22 to disprove the link between thimerosal and neurodevelopmental disorders. Written by industry scientists, the published studies focused solely on one injury (autism), and four out of the five were done on foreign populations with minimal exposure to thimerosal. Three of the five studies were published in a compromised journal, Pediatrics, which receives a significant portion of its revenue from vaccine-makers. In 2002, the AAP dutifully “retired” its 1999 joint statement on thimerosal.23 In January 2013, the AAP went even further in several articles in Pediatrics, going on record in favor of exempting thimerosal from an international treaty on the elimination of avoidable mercury exposures.24

The notion that “trace amounts” of a substance as highly toxic as mercury might be benign is exceedingly misleading.

THE FALLACY OF TRACE AMOUNTS

Even when vaccines do not contain thimerosal as a preservative, manufacturers use it in some single-dose and multidose vaccines to impede bacterial growth during the manufacturing process.5 The CDC states that “when thimerosal is used this way, it is removed later in the process” and only “trace amounts” remain (no more than one microgram per dose).25

The notion that “trace amounts” of a substance as highly toxic as mercury might be benign is exceedingly misleading. In a seminal 2014 publication in the prestigious journal Lancet Neurology, toxicology experts Philippe Grandjean and Philip Landrigan observed that the developing human brain is uniquely vulnerable to mercury and other neurotoxins, often “at much lower exposure levels than had previously been thought to be safe.”26

Discussing methylmercury, the Lancet authors also noted that developmental neurotoxicity occurs at far lower exposure levels than “the concentrations that affect adult brain function.” Other investigators have argued that there may be no meaningful safety threshold for methylmercury.27 Given the body of research indicating that ethylmercury is more toxic than methylmercury and that both have comparable mechanisms of toxicity, it stands to reason that warnings about the risks of lower exposure levels would also apply to ethylmercury.

A 2012 Italian study showed that ethylmercury-containing thimerosal diminished the viability of human cells in the lab at a concentration one-fiftieth that of methylmercury.28Although thimerosal’s apologists like to state that ethylmercury disappears from the bloodstream more quickly than methylmercury, this is no evidence that it has cleared the body. Ethylmercury migrates more rapidly to and then lingers in the organs.29

A study that analyzed hair samples from babies’ first haircuts found that children with autism who had received thimerosal-preserved vaccines excreted lower levels of mercury into their hair as infants compared with normal, same-aged children also receiving these vaccines, suggesting that the mercury had lodged in the autistic children’s brains and was hindering neurological development.30

OPEN SEASON ON PREGNANT WOMEN

Thimerosal passes more easily from a mother’s bloodstream through the placenta than does methylmercury.31 Fetal cord blood mercury levels are typically about double the mother’s mercury blood levels.32 This is cause for concern for developing babies in light of the CDC’s 2004 recommendation that all pregnant women in any trimester get flu shots. By 2012–2013, uptake of flu shots during pregnancy had steadily increased to approximately 50 percent.33 Manufacturers still preserve millions of flu shots with massive bolus doses of thimerosal (about thirty-six million flu shots containing twenty-five micrograms of mercury in the 2017-2018 flu season),34 meaning that children born since 2004 have been increasingly likely to be exposed to thimerosal in utero.

A 2017 CDC study reviewing data from the 2010–11 and 2011–2012 flu seasons linked spontaneous abortions to flu vaccines, finding that women vaccinated with the inactivated influenza vaccine had 3.7-fold greater odds of spontaneous abortion within twenty-three days than women not receiving the vaccine.35 For women who received the H1N1 vaccine in both seasons covered in the study, the odds of spontaneous abortion in the month after receiving a flu vaccine were 7.7 times greater. The vast majority of flu vaccines available during the seasons studied were multidose formulations containing twenty-five micrograms of mercury.

THIMEROSAL WORLDWIDE

While the thimerosal debate has carried on in the United States, children around the world have never stopped receiving thimerosal-containing vaccines. The mindset revealed by Simpsonwood attendee John Clements of the WHO—who described a “mandate” to vaccinate one hundred million children “this year, next year and for many years to come” with thimerosal-containing vaccines—has not changed. In fact, the medical community continues to argue that the benefits of keeping thimerosal in vaccines outweigh the risks and that thimerosal is “critical” for low-resource countries that rely on multidose vials as the most affordable option.36 One of the AAP’s former presidents has asserted that, for the good of the global community, the Academy’s pro-thimerosal position is a “no-brainer.”37 The WHO’s Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety states that “no additional studies of the safety of [thimerosal] in vaccines are warranted.”38

The global health authorities making cavalier and single-minded pronouncements on “life-saving vaccines” should consider the bigger health picture. For example, exposure to toxic metals such as mercury can contribute to malnutrition and, conversely, malnutrition may also increase susceptibility to mercury toxicity.39,40 Mercury is also a potent immunosuppressant, which has implications in low-resource settings where children already face numerous other health challenges and environmental pollutants.41

THE TIME IS NOW

The medical establishment’s defense of thimerosal’s safety has proven highly successful in tamping down deeper investigation into thimerosal and the vaccine industry. Perhaps because major pharmaceutical companies (the makers of vaccines) are among the biggest advertisers in the U.S., the mainstream press has accepted these government orthodoxies and ignored the ample evidence showing that thimerosal is toxic. In fact, the thimerosal saga illustrates the aggressive, knee-jerk rejection by the press, the medical community and allied financial interests of any scientific information suggesting that established medical practices are harming public health. Nevertheless, continuing to wait for more research is not a reasonable public policy option. Thimerosal is dangerous to human health and should immediately be removed from all vaccines (as well as other pharmaceutical and cosmetic products), both in the U.S. and globally.

 

REFERENCES
1. Geier DA, Sykes LK, Geier MR. A review of thimerosal (Merthiolate) and its ethylmercury breakdown product: specific historical considerations regarding safety and effectiveness. J Toxicol Environ Health B 2007;10:575-596.
2. Food and Drug Administration. “Mercury in drug and biologic products.” https://worldmercuryproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/MercuryinDrugsandBiologicsFDAupdated_2009.pdf.
3. World Mercury Project. “Mercury in medicine.” https://worldmercuryproject.org/mercury-facts/mercury-in-medicine/.
4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Thimerosal in vaccines.” https://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/concerns/thimerosal/index.html.
5. Food and Drug Administration. “Thimerosal and vaccines.” Last updated Jan. 5, 2018. https://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/SafetyAvailability/VaccineSafety/UCM096228.
6. Risher JF, Tucker P. Alkyl mercury-induced toxicity: multiple mechanisms of action. Rev Environ Contam Toxicol 2017;240:105-149.
7. Al-Tikriti K, Al-Mufti AW. An outbreak of organomercury poisoning among Iraqi farmers. Bull World Health Organ 1976;53(Suppl):15-21.
8. Hilmy MI, Rahim SA, Abbas AH. Normal and lethal mercury levels in human beings. Toxicol 1976;6:155-159.
9. Burbacher TM, Shen DD, Liberato N, Grant KS, Cernichiari E, Clarkson T. Comparison of blood and brain mercury levels in infant monkeys exposed to methymercury or vaccines containing thimerosal. Environ Health Perspect 2005;113(8):1015-1021.
10. Dórea JG. Integrating experimental (in vitro and in vivo) neurotoxicity studies of low-dose thimerosal relevant to vaccines. Neurochem Res 2011;36(6):927-938.
11. Rooney JP. The retention time of inorganic mercury in the brain—a systematic review of the evidence. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 2014;274(3):425-435.
12. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. General recommendations on immunization: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR 2011;60(2).
13. National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986. https://www.congress.gov/bill/99th-congress/house-bill/5546.
14. Kennedy, RF Jr. Thimerosal: Let the Science Speak. New York, NY: Skyhorse Publishing; 2015.
15. Joint statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the United States Public Health Service (USPHS). Pediatrics 1999;104(3).
16. Scientific review of Vaccine Safety Datalink information. Simpsonwood Retreat Center, Norcross, GA; June 7-8, 2000. Available at: https://worldmercuryproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/The-Simpsonwood-Documents.pdf.
17. European Medicines Agency. “Signal management.” http://www.ema.europa.eu/ema/index.jsp?curl=pages/regulation/general/general_content_000587.jsp&mid=WC0b01ac0580727d1b.
18. Verstraeten T, Davis RL, DeStefano F et al. Safety of thimerosal-containing vaccines: a two-phased study of computerized health maintenance organization databases. Pediatrics 2003;112:1039-1048.
19. Stehr-Green P, Tull P, Stellfeld M, Mortenson PB, Simpson D. Autism and thimerosal-containing vaccines: lack of consistent evidence for an association. Am J Prev Med2003;25:101-106.
20. Hviid A, Stellfeld M, Wohlfahrt J, Melbye M. Association between thimerosal-containing vaccine and autism. JAMA 2003;290:1763-1766.
21. Madsen KM, Lauritsen MB, Pedersen CB et al. Thimerosal and the occurrence of autism: negative ecological evidence from Danish population-based data. Pediatrics2003;112:604-606.
22. Andrews N, Miller E, Grant A, Stowe J, Osborne V, Taylor B. Thimerosal exposure in infants and developmental disorders: a retrospective cohort study in the United Kingdom does not support a causal association. Pediatrics 2004;114:584-591.
23. Orenstein WA, Paulson JA, Brady MT, Cooper LZ, Seib K. Global vaccination recommendations and thimerosal. Pediatrics 2013;131(1).
24. Cooper LZ, Katz SL. Ban on thimerosal in draft treaty on mercury: why the AAP’s position in 2012 is so important. Pediatrics 2013;131(1).
25. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Understanding thimerosal, mercury, and vaccine safety.” Last reviewed Feb. 2013. https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/patient-ed/conversations/downloads/vacsafe-thimerosal-color-office.pdf.
26. Grandjean P, Landrigan PJ. Neurobehavioural effects of developmental toxicity. Lancet Neurol 2014;13: 330-338.
27. Rice DC. The U.S. EPA reference dose for methylmercury: sources of uncertainty. Environ Res 2004;95:406-413.
28. Guzzi G, Pigatto PD, Spadari F, La Porta CA. Effect of thimerosal, methylmercury, and mercuric chloride in Jurkat T Cell Line. Interdiscip Toxicol 2012;5(3):159-161.
29. Harry GJ, Harris MW, Burka LT. Mercury concentrations in brain and kidney following ethylmercury, methylmercury, and Thimerosal administration to neonatal mice. Toxicol Lett 2004;154(3):183-189.
30. Holmes AS, Blaxill MF, Haley BE. Reduced levels of mercury in first baby haircuts of autistic children. Int J Toxicol 2003;22(4):277-285.
31. Leonard A, Jacquet P, Lauwerys RR. Mutagenicity and teratogenicity of mercury compounds. Mutat Res 1983;114(1):1-18.
32. Stern AH, Smith AE. An assessment of the cord blood: maternal blood methylmercury ratio: implications for risk assessment. Environ Health Perspect 2003;111(12):1465-1470.
33. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Influenza vaccination coverage among pregnant women—United States, 2012-13 influenza season. MMWR 2013;62(38):787-792.
34. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Seasonal influenza vaccine supply for the U.S. 2017-2018 influenza season. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/vaxsupply.htm.
35. Donahue JG, Kieke BA, King JP, et al. Association of spontaneous abortion with receipt of inactivated influenza vaccine containing H1N1pdm09 in 2010-11 and 2011-12. Vaccine2017;35(40):5314-5322.
36. Sifferlin A. Experts argue to keep thimerosal in some vaccines. TIME, Dec. 27, 2012.
37. Tavernise S. Vaccine rule is said to hurt health efforts. The New York Times, Dec. 17, 2012.
38. World Health Organization. “Thiomersal in vaccines.” http://www.who.int/vaccine_safety/committee/topics/thiomersal/Jun_2012/en/.
39. Anetor GO. Waste dumps in local communities in developing countries and hidden danger to health. Perspect Public Health 2016;136(4):245-251.
40. Chakrabarti SK, Bai C. Effects of protein-deficient nutrition during rat pregnancy and development on developmental hindlimb crossing due to methylmercury intoxication. Arch Toxicol 2000;74(4-5):196-202.
41. Tsai MS, Chen MH, Lin CC, et al. Children’s environmental health based on birth cohort studies of Asia. Sci Total Environ 2017;609:396-409.

This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly magazine of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Spring 2018.

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Alternative News

Landmark Case Filed Against U.S. Federal Communications Commission On 5G & Wireless Health Concerns

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The Environmental Health Trust is has filed a case against the U.S. Federal Communications Commission regarding 5G and wireless radiation, citing health and environmental concerns.

  • Reflect On:

    How are federal health regulatory agencies able to approve this technology without any appropriate safety testing? Is there an Industry influence? Why are health concerns raised by thousands of papers considered a "conspiracy?" What's going on here?

The case is Environmental Health Trust, et al. v. FCC  case number 20-1025, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The Environmental Health Trust is a think tank that promotes a healthier environment through research, education, and policy and the only nonprofit organization in the world that carries out cutting edge research on environmental health hazards. They work directly with communities, health and education professionals, and policymakers to understand and mitigate these hazards. Dr. Devra Davis founded the non-profit Environmental Health Trust in 2007 in Teton County, Wyoming. She has been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize, and has authored more than 200 publications in books and journals. She is currently Visiting Professor of Medicine at The Hebrew University Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel, and Ondokuz Mayis University Medical School, Samsun, Turkey. Dr. Davis lectures at the University of California, San Francisco and Berkeley, Dartmouth, Georgetown, Harvard, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and major universities in India, Australia, Finland, and elsewhere.

She’s actually one of the scientists who was creating awareness about big tobacco and how they were deceiving the public back in the day, and she’s compared that with the current climate of wireless technologies, proving that these technologies, like 5G and its predecessors, may be harmful to not only human health, but environmental health as well. The bottom line is, it’s firmly established in scientific literature that there are biological effects to be concerned about. These technologies pose great risks, and it’s quite alarming that federal health regulatory agencies have approved the rollout of these technologies without our consent, and furthermore, without any health and/or environmental safety testing.

There are hundreds, if not thousands of scientists doing their part to try and tackle this issue together by raiding red flags.

What Happened: The Environmental Health Trust has filed a case against the Federal Communications Commission. They explain:

Environmental Health Trust v. FCC challenges the FCC’s refusal to update its 25-year-old obsolete wireless radiation human exposure “safety” limits and the FCC’s refusal to adopt scientific, biologically based radio frequency radiation limits that adequately protect public health and the environment. The brief is filed jointly with Children’s Health Defense.

Our joint brief proves that the FCC ignored the record indicating overwhelming scientific evidence of harm to people and the environment from allowable levels of wireless radiation from phones, laptops and cell towers. Furthermore, the FCC “sees no reason to take steps to protect children”, despite being presented with scientific evidence indicating that children are uniquely vulnerable due to their developing brains and bodies.  Therefore, its decision not to review the “safety” limits is arbitrary, capricious, not evidence-based and unlawful.

Our brief contends the FCC has violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and the 1996 Telecommunications Act (TCA).

Here is a clip of Senator Richard Blumenthal during a hearing that took place last year, questioning wireless industry representatives about the safety of 5G technology. During an exchange with wireless industry representatives who were also in attendance, Blumenthal asked them whether they have supported research on the safety of 5G technology and potential links between radio-frequency and cancer, and the industry representatives conceded they have not.

The EHT goes on to explain that:

The FCC opened an Inquiry into the adequacy of its exposure limits in 2013 after the Government Accountability Office issued a report in 2012 stating that the limits may not reflect current science and need to be reviewed. In response, hundreds of scientists and medical professionals submitted a wealth of peer-reviewed studies showing the consensus of the scientific community is that RFR is deeply harmful to people and the environment and is linked to cancer, reproductive harm, and other biological ills to humans, animals, and plants.

Notwithstanding the extremely well-documented record of these negative impacts from RFR, the FCC released an order in December 2019 deciding that nothing needed to be done and maintaining that the existing, antiquated exposure limits are adequate now and for the future.

In large measure, the FCC simply ignored the vast amount of evidence in the record showing an urgent need for action to protect the public and the environment. EHT contends that the FCC ignored the recommendations of hundreds of medical experts and public health experts who called for updated regulations that protect against biological impacts and for the development of policies to immediately reduce public exposure.

The brief contends the FCC has violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) because its order is arbitrary and capricious, and not evidence-based; violated the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) because the FCC did not take a hard look on the environmental impacts of its decision; and violated the 1996 Telecommunications Act (TCA) because the FCC failed, as required by the TCA, to consider the impact of its decision on the public health and safety.

“The FCC entirely ignored the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics, hundreds of scientists and over 30 medical and public health organizations. Wireless emission limits should protect children who will have a lifetime of exposure,” stated Theodora Scarato, Executive Director of Environmental Health Trust. Scarato pointed out that the FCC “saw no reason to take steps to protect children” despite voluminous scientific evidence on the record showing that children are uniquely vulnerable due to their developing brains and bodies.

“Equally shocking is how the FCC could state that the existing limits which were developed in 1996 are protective without even addressing the impact of the existing limits on the natural environment. In this regard, there was a noticeable absence of on-the-record comments by the EPA. In fact, the EPA recently stated that it has no funded mandate to even review research on RFR. Yet there is a great deal of evidence in the FCC proceeding showing that radiofrequency radiation is harmful to birds, bees and trees.”

Video of Press Conference 

Opening Brief 

EHT Submissions to 13-84

The science is also clear, there are thousands of peer-reviewed publications raising cause for concern. For example, A study published in 2019 is one of many that raises concerns. It’s titled “Risks to Health and Well-Being From Radio-Frequency Radiation Emitted by Cell Phones and Other Wireless Devices.”

It outlines how, “In some countries, notably the US, scientific evidence of the potential hazards of RFR has been largely dismissed.  Findings of carcinogenicity, infertility and cell damage occurring at daily exposure levels—within current limits—indicate that existing exposure standards are not sufficiently protective of public health. Evidence of carcinogenicity alone, such as that from the NTP study, should be sufficient to recognize that current exposure limits are inadequate.”

Would it not be in the best interests of everybody to simply put this technology through appropriate safety testing?

It goes on to state that “Public health authorities in many jurisdictions have not yet incorporated the latest science from the U.S. NTP or other groups. Many cite 28-year old guidelines by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers which claimed that “Research on the effects of chronic exposure and speculations on the biological significance of non-thermal interactions have not yet resulted in any meaningful basis for alteration of the standard”

It’s one of many that call for safety testing before the rollout of 5G testing, because all we have right now from those who claim that it’s safe are ‘reviews of literature’ that are determining it’s safe.

This particular study emphasizes:

The Telecom industry’s fifth generation (5G) wireless service will require the placement of many times more small antennae/cell towers close to all recipients of the service, because solid structures, rain and foliage block the associated millimeter wave RFR (72). Frequency bands for 5G are separated into two different frequency ranges. Frequency Range 1 (FR1) includes sub-6 GHz frequency bands, some of which are bands traditionally used by previous standards, but has been extended to cover potential new spectrum offerings from 410 to 7,125 MHz. Frequency Range 2 (FR2) includes higher frequency bands from 24.25 to 52.6 GHz. Bands in FR2 are largely of millimeter wave length, these have a shorter range but a higher available bandwidth than bands in the FR1. 5G technology is being developed as it is also being deployed, with large arrays of directional, steerable, beam-forming antennae, operating at higher power than previous technologies. 5G is not stand-alone—it will operate and interface with other (including 3G and 4G) frequencies and modulations to enable diverse devices under continual development for the “internet of things,” driverless vehicles and more (72).

Novel 5G technology is being rolled out in several densely populated cities, although potential chronic health or environmental impacts have not been evaluated and are not being followed. Higher frequency (shorter wavelength) radiation associated with 5G does not penetrate the body as deeply as frequencies from older technologies although its effects may be systemic (7374). The range and magnitude of potential impacts of 5G technologies are under-researched, although important biological outcomes have been reported with millimeter wavelength exposure. These include oxidative stress and altered gene expression, effects on skin and systemic effects such as on immune function (74). In vivo studies reporting resonance with human sweat ducts (73), acceleration of bacterial and viral replication, and other endpoints indicate the potential for novel as well as more commonly recognized biological impacts from this range of frequencies, and highlight the need for research before population-wide continuous exposures.

A number of countries have already banned wireless technology in schools, and more are taking action steps, but it’s difficult when so many governments are dominated by corporations. Many people believe we now live in a corporatocracy, not a democracy, given the fact that they (corporations) have amassed so much power and have ways of dictating government policy. Paul Bischoff, a tech journalist and privacy advocate, recently compiled data regarding telecom’s political contributions to influence policies that benefit their industry, it’s quite revealing.

The list is quite long, and for the sake of a short read, if you want to learn more and access more of the science, you can start by visiting the Environmental Health Trust. It’s an excellent resource. There is a bit more information this article I recently published, but we’ve published many on the topic so you can browse around our site as well if interested, just use the search bar.

Why This Matters: 5G technology, and wireless technologies in general are a great example of measures being imposed on us against our will. It’s one of many examples that should have us questioning, do we really live in a democracy? Why has so much effort and awareness been raised, yet the idea that these technologies could pose a threat, and do pose a threat, is still considered a conspiracy theory within the mainstream? Why? What’s really going on here? Are there constant battles over human perception when it comes to certain topics? How much have we been misled? Is it time to start thinking for ourselves instead of relying on federal health regulatory agencies? How are we living? Why do we think the way we do? Human beings are full of unlimited potential, and there are better ways to do things here on planet Earth!

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Awareness

Study: Exercising With Mask Induces a “Hypercapnic Hypoxia Environment” – Not Good

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A study published in June 2020 raises some health concerns about people wearing masks while exercising. It also calls into question the ability of masks to stop Covid-19.

  • Reflect On:

    Are the mandatory orders that we are being given from government health authorities really the right thing to do? Why is there such a back-lash for questioning these measures? Should we not encourage questioning and discussion?

What Happened: A recent study published in the Journal Medical Hypothesis titled “Exercise with facemask; Are we handling a devil’s sword? – A physiological hypothesis” claims the following:

Exercising with facemasks may reduce available Oxygen and increase air trapping preventing substantial carbon dioxide exchange. The hypercapnic hypoxia may potentially increase acidic environment, cardiac overload, anaerobic metabolism and renal overload, which may substantially aggravate the underlying pathology of established chronic diseases. Further contrary to the earlier thought, no evidence exists to claim the facemasks during exercise offer additional protection from the droplet transfer of the virus. Hence, we recommend social distancing is better than facemasks during exercise and optimal utilization rather than exploitation of facemasks during exercise.

According to the authors, exercising with facemasks induced as “a hypercapnic hypoxia environment [inadequate Oxygen (O2) and Carbon dioxide (CO2) exchange] . This acidic environment, both at the alveolar and blood vessels level, induces numerous physiological alterations when exercising with facemasks: 1) Metabolic shift; 2) cardiorespiratory stress; 3) excretory system altercations; 4) Immune mechanism; 5) Brain and nervous system.’

Further, poor saturation of haemoglobin would be anticipated due to increased partial pressure of CO2 at higher exercise intensity Fig. 2 demonstrates the extreme right shift of the oxyhemoglobin dissociation curve, which would be higher than that expected during exercise. This acidic environment would unload O2 faster at the muscle level, but due to higher heart rate and reduced affinity at the alveolar junction, the partial pressure of O2 would substantially fall, creating a hypoxic environment for all vital organs.

In the figure below, the authors present a dissociation curve that “is showing the extreme right side shift with the carbon dioxide rebreathing (PaCO2) and inadequate available Oxygen (PAO2). Red dotted lines show the right shift of the curve due to exercise without masks (↑PaCO2, PH and temperature). Violet dotted lines show the extreme curve shift during exercise with masks (↑↑↑↑PaCO2, PH and temperature). (For interpretation of the references to colour in this figure legend, the reader is referred to the web version of this article.)”

The authors also point out that “wearing of facemasks to prevent the community spread of the novel Covid-19 is itself debatable, considering the limited evidence on the subject matter. WHO recommends masks only for Covid-19 patients but the usage of masks is morally “exploited” among community individuals.”

This is important to recognize, the use of masks is indeed debatable. Right now, “fact-checkers” are going around the internet censoring and labelling any information that seems to question the efficacy of masks when it comes to Covid-19, or anything that contradicts the WHO organization. Why do voices looking at facts ad science, and providing another perspective get silenced?

The purpose of the paper cited in this article is to explore and question: Does the use of facemasks offer any benefit for ‘social exercisers’ during this pandemic; 2) Does exercising with facemasks alter normal physiological responses to exercise; 3) Does exercising with facemasks increase the risk of falling prey to Coronavirus; 4) How could “social exercisers” combat the physiological alteration?

Here’s another interesting claim by the researchers:

The study concludes:

Exercising with facemasks might increase pathophysiological risks of underlying chronic disease, especially cardiovascular and metabolic risks. Social exercisers are recommended to do low to moderate-intensity exercise, rather than vigorous exercise when they are wearing facemasks. We also recommend people with chronic diseases to exercise alone at home, under supervision when required, without the use of facemasks. Given the identified and hypothesized risks, social distancing and self-isolation appear to be better than wearing facemasks while exercising during this global crisis.

This isn’t the only paper that has called into question the use of a mask. This study, is one of multiple that conveys the idea that they might in fact increase one’s chance of contracting a respiratory infection.

For example,

According to a study published in BMJ Open in 2015,

This study is the first RCT of cloth masks, and the results caution against the use of cloth masks. This is an important finding to inform occupational health and safety. Moisture retention, reuse of cloth masks and poor filtration may result in increased risk of infection. Further research is needed to inform the widespread use of cloth masks globally. However, as a precautionary measure, cloth masks should not be recommended for HCWs, particularly in high-risk situations, and guidelines need to be updated.

We have provided the first clinical efficacy data of cloth masks, which suggest HCWs should not use cloth masks as protection against respiratory infection. Cloth masks resulted in significantly higher rates of infection than medical masks, and also performed worse than the control arm. The controls were HCWs who observed standard practice, which involved mask use in the majority, albeit with lower compliance than in the intervention arms. The control HCWs also used medical masks more often than cloth masks. When we analysed all mask-wearers including controls, the higher risk of cloth masks was seen for laboratory-confirmed respiratory viral infection.

According to another study published a year after the one mentioned above,

The physiological effects of breathing elevated inhaled CO2 may include changes in visual performance, modified exercise endurance, headaches and dyspnea. The psychological effects include decreased reasoning and alertness, increased irritability, severe dyspnea, headache, dizziness, perspiration, and short-term memory loss. (source)

There are many examples. Doctors have been making YouTube videos and giving interviews about the same concerns as well. Again, many of these videos and interviews have been deleted from big tech platforms like YouTube.

Why?

Why This Is Important: We are living in a time where simply questioning information that’s dished out to us is becoming harder and harder to do and talk about on the internet – a place where ideas are shared. When something credible opposes a narrative handed to the population via some very powerful people, not only is it censored and often removed, but a mass media campaign of ridicule ensues. Of course, the main strategy used in the mainstream is to call these ideas a “conspiracy theory” and cast doubt. Censorship + Ridicule = massive perception manipulation.

Below is a screenshot of what has happened with our YouTube channel January 1st 2019. We were demonetized and shaddow banned. This is just one example of big tech censorship we have experienced. Our Facebook page has been heavily cut, and we no longer get ranked in Google search. We often joke at the office that, if people knew what we’ve gone through to keep Collective Evolution afloat for the past 11 years they wouldn’t believe it.

This is why we created CETV. Our own platform we created to help us continue doing what we do. CETV is our inner circle membership site that provides news and tools to raise collective consciousness. You can support our work and get inside access to Collective Evolution by becoming a member of CETV.

We thank everybody who has joined so far, you’ve truly kept CE going!

Why are there a digital authoritarian “fact-checkers” going around the internet and censoring information? Should people not have the right to examine information openly, freely and transparently and decide for themselves what is, and what isn’t, instead of having people in positions of power do it for them? Does this not leave room for mass manipulation of information?

The good news is that the censorship of information has drawn the attention of even more people, and has been a catalyst for some to recognize what’s really going on here.

Our physical rights are slowly being taken away under the guise of good will. Crisis’ like the coronavirus, or terrorism have always been used to do this. Create the problem, propose the solution and make it justified in the eyes of the masses. If we continue down this path and choose to be governed by those who do not have the best interests of humanity at heart, we are going down the path of total and complete population control.

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, there is so much controversy and information out there that completely opposes the mainstream media narrative. This information and evidence, once seen, has such a big impact on one’s consciousness and perception of the world we live in. Just like 9/11, this coronavirus incident is serving the collective and sparking more questions about what exactly we are doing here. Why do we live the way we live? Why do we respond the way we respond? Why do we continue to follow orders from those whom we choose to let govern us when it isn’t even clear that their recommendations are for the best interest of humanity?

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Alternative News

Trump Gives 1.16 Billion To Bill Gates’ Vaccine Alliance & Inks Deal With Pfizer For A COVID Vaccine

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Not long ago, President Trump gave more than a billion dollars to a vaccine alliance called Gavi that was co-founded by Bill & Melinda Gates. He also inked a deal with Pfizer for 100,000,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you going to get the vaccine? Will it be required to travel and to enter into certain buildings? If so, will you get it then? Are mandatory medical measures a violation of our freedom and human rights? Is it really for the good of everyone?

What Happened: Last month, US President Donald Trump “donated more to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, to prevent the spread of infectious diseases worldwide.” He did so in a statement of support for Gavi at the public Gavi pledge conference, which was hosted by the United Kingdom, on June 4th. So far, the United States has donated more than $12 billion for the development of COVID-19 vaccines and therapies, and “the U.S. commitment to immunization complements the work of innovators in the United States and other countries who are racing to find a vaccine and treatments for COVID­19.” (source)

Bill and Melinda Gates co-founded the Gavi alliance in the year 2000, it’s a public-private partnership that claims to support “global health-system strengthening and vaccine deployment for infectious diseases worldwide.”  (source)

Here’s a video clip of Trump talking about his decision.

Shortly after this, Trump announced that they will give nearly $2 billion to Pfizer, a big pharmaceutical company, for 100 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine that could make its way into the public domain sometime next year. According to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, the U.S. could buy another 500 million doses under the agreement if the vaccine is safe and effective in the U.S.

Multiple countries are now purchasing vaccines for the new coronavirus.

Why This Is Important: It’s important because the coronavirus vaccine is extremely relevant right now and on the minds of many as the only possible solution to this pandemic, at least that’s how it’s being marketed, despite the fact that multiple peer-reviewed studies and examples have emerged from all over the world regarding the success of other interventions.

For example, a study published last month in Frontiers in Immunology titled “Quercetin and Vitamin C: An Experimental, Synergistic Therapy for the Prevention and Treatment of SARS-CoV-2 Related Disease (COVID-19)” concluded the following:

Quercetin displays a broad range of antiviral properties which can interfere at multiple steps of pathogen virulence – virus entry, virus replication, protein assembly – and that these therapeutic effects can be augmented by the co-administration of vitamin C. Furthermore, due to their lack of severe side effects and low-costs, we strongly suggest the combined administration of these two compounds for both the prophylaxis and the early treatment of respiratory tract infections, especially including COVID-19 patients.”

As far as vitamin C goes, this is not the only study or article to recommend its use when it comes to treating COVID-19. For examplem Medicine in Drug Discovery of Elsevier, a major scientific publishing house, recently published an article on early and high-dose IVC in the treatment and prevention of Covid-19. High-dose intravenous VC was successfully used in the treatment of 50 moderate to severe COVID-19 patients in China. The doses used varied between 2 g and 10 g per day, given over a period of 8–10 h. Additional VC bolus may be required among patients in critical conditions.”

New York hospitals were also seeing success with Quercetin and Vitamin C. You can read more about that here. Vitamin C isn’t the only ‘alternative’ therapy, Hydroxychloroquine also caused quite a bit of controversy. The main point I am trying to make here is that mainstream media has not only ignored these facts, but there seemed to be a coordinated attack on the idea that these therapies can work. Once the mainstream media and organizations who are threatened come up with a way, whether it be by paying scientists or manipulating data, to ridicule an idea, that idea instantaneously loses credibility in the minds of the masses. That’s how much of a stranglehold mainstream media has, and has had on our collective perception.

Secondly, it’s important because according to organizations like the American Medical Association as well as the World Health Organization, vaccine hesitancy among people, parents, and, as mentioned by scientists at the World Health Organization’s recent Global Vaccine Safety Summit, health professionals and scientists continues to increase. This is no secret, as vaccines have become a very popular topic over the past few years alone. In fact, the World Health Organization has listed vaccine hesitancy as one of the biggest threats to global health security. The issue of vaccine hesitancy is no secret, for example, one study (of many) published in the journal EbioMedicineoutlines this point.

This fact was also  emphasized by Professor Heidi Larson, a Professor of Anthropology and the Risk and Decision Scientist Director at the Vaccine Confidence Project. She is referenced by the authors in the study above. At the WHO conference, she emphasized that safety concerns among people and health professionals seem to be the biggest issue regarding vaccine hesitancy.

The other thing that’s a trend, and an issue, is not just confidence in providers but confidence of health care providers, we have a very wobbly health professional frontline that is starting to question vaccines and the safety of vaccines. That’s a huge problem, because to this day any study I’ve seen–and we’re constantly looking on any studies in this space–still, the most trusted person on any study I’ve seen globally is the health care provider.

There are a number  of physicians and scientists raising awareness about this. The Physicians For Informed Consent are one of many such groups. This brings me to my next point, informed consent.

Vaccine mandates have already caused quite a controversy when it comes to children. The right to receive a medical or religious exemption is being taken away in various states, and a child cannot attend a public school unless they are up to date with the CDC’s recommended vaccination schedule. This is done on the basis that unvaccinated children are a danger to vaccinated children, which is a highly flawed argument given the fact that vaccines aren’t safe and effective for everyone, which is why the National Childhood Vaccine Injury act has paid nearly $4 billion to families of vaccine-injured children, and that’s only counting approximately 1 percent of vaccine-injured children because most of them go unreported. You can read more about that here.

It’s also important because we need to weigh the dangers of the vaccine compared to the actual disease. The Physicians For Informed Consent (PIC) recently published a report titled “Physicians for Informed Consent (PIC) Compares COVID-19 to Previous Seasonal and Pandemic Flu Periods.” According to them, the infection/fatality rate of COVID-19 is 0.26%.

Similar to CDC estimations, PIC’s analysis results in a COVID-19 CFR of 0.26%, which is comparable to the CFRs of previous seasonal and pandemic flu periods. “Knowing the CFR of COVID-19 allows for an objective standard by which to compare both non-pharmaceutical interventions and medical countermeasures,” said Dr. Shira Miller, PIC’s founder and president. “For example, safety studies of any potential COVID-19 vaccine should be able to prove whether or not the risks of the vaccine are less than the risks of the infection. (source)

You can read more about that story here.  So far, multiple clinical trials for COVID-19 vaccines have shown severe reactions within 10 days after taking the vaccine. You can read more about that story, here.

Alan Dershowitz and Robert F. Kennedy recently had a vaccine debate regarding the safety of vaccines. It includes a discussion about the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine. You can watch that and read more about it here.

Last but not least, it goes to show just how susceptible politicians and presidents are to what many before them have referred to as the invisible government. Donald Trump was clearly not a fan of vaccines, and that was made clear during his 2016 election campaign. When it comes to politics, big business always seems to win. Even those from within our federal health regulatory agencies are speaking up. In fact, only a few years ago, more than a dozen scientists from within the CDC put out an anonymous public statement detailing the influence corporations and rougue interests  have on government policy. They were referred to as the Spider Papers.

The invisible government, which like a giant octopus sprawls its slimy legs over our cities, states and nation…The little coterie of powerful international bankers virtually run the United States government for their own selfish purposes. They practically control both parties…(and) control the majority of the newspapers and magazines in this country. They use the columns of these papers to club into submission or drive out of office public officials who refuse to do the bidding of the powerful corrupt cliques which compose the invisible government. It operates under the cover of a self-created screen and seizers  our executive officers, legislative bodies, schools, courts, newspapers and every agency created for the public protection.” (source)(source) – John F. HylanMayor of New York City from 1918-1925

Another great one from Theodore Roosevelt

“Political parties exist to secure responsible government and to execute the will of the people. From these great tasks both of the old parties have turned aside. Instead of instruments to promote the general welfare, they have become the tools of corrupt interests which use them impartially to serve their selfish purposes. Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government, owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship of the day.”(source)

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, the new coronavirus and the measures taken to combat it have caused a lot of controversy. When someone like NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said governments are using the coronavirus to push more authoritarian measures upon the population, it’s important that we listen. Instead, we prosecute them, exile them, and put people like Julian Assange who expose war crimes in jail while we agree with and identify with those who are committing the crime. What is encouraging, however, is that just like 9/11 did, COVID-19 is shifting human consciousness in a major way.

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