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I’m Convinced That Plants Have Thoughts, Feelings & Emotions – But I’m Still “Vegan”

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    It's not uncommon to hear the term, "plants have feelings too." Multiple studies clearly point to the idea that consciousness may be present. That being said, this should in no way be used to justify the continuation of the mass genocide of animals.

  • Reflect On:

    Have we been conditioned to eat meat? What right do we have to take another life the way we do today, in mass numbers and through extreme torture.

First of all, I’d like to start off by emphasizing that billions of animals are raised for slaughter every single year, and that’s in America alone. It’s a horrid industry, full of torture, where animals are kept in heart-breaking conditions, stripped from their children, tortured, and made to live in fear for the entirety of their short miserable lives. This is no way to treat another being that shares this Earth with us, and we have no right to ‘grow’ them to feed ourselves, especially in an age where there are other options. Our actions with regards to eating animals is playing a big part in destroying the Earth.

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What makes us think we are above them, or better than them, or have any right to do what we do to them?

-->Free e-Guide - Your Body Electric: An Introduction to Bioenergetics: Dr. Christine Schaffner will help you learn the basic principles of energy, frequency and vibrational healing! Click here to learn more!

Secondly, I’d like to point out that, although morality, ethics and empathy take precedence as a reason not to eat animals, so does health and the fact that it just doesn’t seem normal nor natural. Take milk for example, we are the only animal on the planet that drinks the milk of another animal, and the only species to continue drinking milk after weaning. Science is now confirming the benefits of a plant-based diet and their ability to reverse, heal, and prevent multiple diseases.

Plant-based protein is also thought, by many, to be a far better option than protein from meat, at least that’s what the science is showing. Not to mention the antibiotics that are pumped into these poor animals, as well as GMO animal feed which is laced with pesticides that are destroying the guts of these animals. It’s a dirty and unethical business, one that has proven just how far we’ve strayed from morality and the spiritual foundations that once allowed for others and ourselves to live harmoniously.

Arguments for eating animals tend to range, the most common seems to be that this is the diet of those who roamed the Earth before us. I published an article regarding that belief which you can read here. It’s not known that many of those groups were vegetarian based. There is so much information pointing to the idea that we are more suited and adapted towards eating a plant-based diet. The idea that meat is needed is simply not true, it reminds me of the clever marketing used by big food and big pharmaceutical corporations. We are only learning now that our food guides have been a recipe for disease. Perhaps eating meat is the same thing? Some that see enormous amounts of profits for a select few. Have we been made to believe that we ‘need’ to eat meat and that it’s ‘natural’?

When you actually look at the way our digestive systems are constructed, we have the anatomy and the physiology of a strict plant eater or herbivore.  We don’t have any adaptations in our digestive system or in our physiology that is adapted to eating or consuming animal flesh. And that’s why we can’t consume animal flesh without the aid of technology. But when you look at the jaw structure, jaw mechanics, our esophagus, our stomach and the length of our intestines, it’s clear that we have the anatomy of a committed herbivore.
Dr. Milton Mills

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The world is no doubt changing, the consciousness of the planet is shifting and can be seen in multiple areas that completely surround all aspects of human life. Health is clearly one of them, vegan and vegetarian options are booming and more doctors, like this one, are using food to help reverse disease instead of prescribing prescription medications, something that kills 100,000 people alone every single year.

Many athletes are also going vegan and create a lot of awareness regarding the protein/muscle myth.

It is my understanding that veganism is an umbrella term which celebrates the daily practice of compassion, sustainability, health, and global/personal examination. It is a reference point for living a life that closely parallels these values. It is never about perfection or particulars, but incremental and exponential ripples of personal change for humanity.

The rewards of living consciously and collectively are not exclusive to any particular person and their dietary lifestyle. We all play an integral role in creating positive shifts on this planet, and all have different pieces of the pie where our gifts and strengths lie.
Jill Stella

A Deeper Look At Veganism

If you had to experience the pain and fear an animal goes through during transport, being pushed into the slaughterhouse and the gas chamber or slaughter itself, you wouldn’t eat them. It’s only because you’re ignorant to reality—and their reality—that you do.
– Erin Janus

There are a lot of vegan activists out there that can make one feel guilty for eating meat, vegan activism can also create separation, fear and division, it’s usually what labels do. If you’re a vegan activist, it’s important to be conscious in the way you go about your activism, so you can reach more people. You never want to make someone feel guilty, or at fault, or like they are a bad human being that lacks compassion and empathy. I haven’t eaten meat for approximately 10 years now, and all though I do identify as a vegan today, I can tell you that 10-15 years ago, my love for animals was just the same as it is now.

That being said, it’s hard to watch a mass genocide take place on a daily basis and try and go about your activism with peace and understanding, but it’s of utmost importance.

On one hand, many vegan activists are asking people to have empathy for animals and what they are suffering through. At the same time they are not having empathy for people who may not be aware of the harm we’re causing to animals, and the lengthy journey it can be to make changes to our habits. We often forget that we once were not in ‘the know..’
Joe Martino

If you’ve been a long time reader of Collective Evolution, you’ll know that our unique style of conscious media incorporates neutrality and empathy into what we report and discuss. Why? Let’s explore with questions: where does it lead us, to always be fighting about issues? Where does it lead us, to bash other people about where they are at in their life and what they are doing? Can we not approach these situations with love? In fact, is it not clear that we HAVE to approach these situations with love if we want to see things change?

Plants Have Feelings…

Being a vegan activist myself, there is no shortage of a lack of understanding and backlash from the meat-eating community. There are those who claim that plants have feelings and emotions too, just like animals, but vegans disregard them…

The truth is, I agree, I am completely convinced through my research into the subject that plants do indeed have thoughts, feelings, and emotions, but ultimately, it feels much different eating them. It’s just not the same, and I don’t think I have to explain why… When you look into the eyes of an animal, it’s different. That being said, perhaps it’s not, and we just perceive it as different?

Grover Cleveland Backster Jr., was an interrogation specialist for the Central Intelligence Agency, who became well known for his experiments with plants using a lie-detector machine. Through his research, he believed that plants feel pain and have extrasensory perception (ESP). His work became quite popular, only to be rejected by the mainstream scientific community in the same way that parapsychology is today, despite statistically significant results that rival that of hard sciences. Human intention experiments have been taking place for decades. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of peer-reviewed publications that have examined the mind-matter connection with some very interesting results. His work on this was published in the International Journal of Parapsychology. 

One fairly recent example comes from a study conducted by scientists at National Kaohsiung Normal University, National Taiwan University, and the Institute of Noetic Sciences. They reference a previous experiment which suggested that “consumption of intentionally treated tea influenced subjective mood under double-blind, controlled conditions.” The study used Arabidopsis thaliana seeds (a commonly used wild type of seed that belongs to the Brassica family, which includes cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower), and measured differences in hypocotyl length, anthocyanin, and chlorophyll between seeds hydrated with intentionally treated vs. untreated water. You can read more about that here.

A study published in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine demonstrated that a woman with special abilities was able to significantly accelerate the germination of specific seeds for the purposes of developing a more robust seed stock. You can read more about that and access the study here.

According to Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma and The Botany of Desire:

They (plants) have ways of taking all the sensory data they gather in their everyday lives, integrate it and then behave in an appropriate way in response. And they do this without brains, which, in a way, is what’s incredible about it, because we automatically assume you need a brain to process information.

It’s interesting because for consciousness to thrive and exist, based on my research, a brain or any type of biology for that matter is not needed. I believe all life forms possess consciousness, regardless of their biological make-up.

Here’s a TED talk on how trees talk to each-other.

How I Deal With This Realization

I take a spiritual perspective because to be honest, I don’t want to hurt anything I perceive as a living, sentient, feeling, or experiential. Ultimately, at certain levels of existence, I believe any type of nourishment from ‘food’ sources is not really required. I’m not the only one, there are real live examples of this and scholars like Nikola Tesla who believed the same thing. You can read more about that here.

To deal with this conundrum I found myself in, I referred to indigenous spiritual wisdom, something that has always resonated deeply with me, and at the same time, corroborate with much of my research. Rita Laws, Ph.D., explains the tremendous amount of respect these communities had towards animals, explaining how her own people, the Choctaw Indians of Mississippi and Oklahoma, vegetables were the traditional diet, and all homes were constructed of wood, mud, bark, and cane – not skins. She explains how they, among many other tribes, had a predominantly vegetarian diet prior to European colonization.

Perhaps one of the most interesting revelations shared by her experience and research is the fact that “more than one tribe has creation legends which describe people as a vegetarian, living in a kind of Garden of Eden. A Cherokee legend describes humans, plants, and animals as having lived in the beginning in ‘equality and mutual helpfulness.’”

She describes how the world changed and goes on to explain how “the needs of all were met without killing one another. When man became aggressive and ate some of the animals, the animals invented diseases to keep the human population in check. The plants remained friendly, however, and offered themselves not only as food to man but also as medicine, to combat the new diseases.”

She spoke of a kind of soul contract that exists today, where some animals are providing themselves, and sacrificing themselves for humanity in order to teach us a lesson…

“In the past, and in more than a few tribes, meat-eating was a rare activity, certainly not a daily event. Since the introduction of European meat-eating customs, the introduction of the horse and the gun, and the proliferation of alcoholic beverages and white traders, a lot has changed.”

You can watch that full lecture and read more about it here, it’s where the quotes come from.

Today, animals are raised and killed for slaughter, they are not thanked for their sacrifice, the eldest of the herd is not taken, and they are clearly not volunteering themselves.

When it comes to animals, it’s no different to torturing, killing and depriving a human of their family and loved ones. This is what we are doing today, and in no way does this represent what it means to be a human being but instead shows a complete lack of empathy, love and morality. Plants, for now, I take the perspective that they are offering themselves, quite advanced souls who are playing a role for humanity.

There is a giant holocaust happening on the planet.

I want to stay away from ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ here, and simply convey that at the deepest, most spiritual and metaphysical levels of existence, all is serving, all those who are suffering (animals) are actually benefiting humanity at this time, they are opening our eyes to what we no longer want to experience.

Currently, as a vegan, I can definitely say that with the awareness that plants are also sentient beings, there is a MUCH different feeling eating them compared to animals. It doesn’t feel heavy, the vibe doesn’t seem unhealthy, but rather nourishing. There is a far different energy, and a far greater impact on the planet when you eat animals.

Takeaway

The idea that plants have feelings and emotions too, does in no way justify meat-eating. This does not mean meat-eating is wrong, and labelling it as wrong is perhaps the incorrect approach when it comes to advocating change in human lifestyle that serves the individual, as well as the collective. Our job is to step outside of our current Earth experience, and observe it from a neutral standpoint and feel what intuitively resonates with our hearts. We’ve been subject to so much programming that most of the time, our thoughts, feelings and actions are influenced by outside entities. To truly know how we feel, we have to eliminate concepts of the mind like ‘right’ and ‘wrong.’ That being said, these are simple, most of the time, great descriptions on how to describe what resonates with our heart, and what doesn’t.

You’re not a bad person, or a terrible human if you eat meat, so don’t let anybody ever make you feel that way. At the same time, if you do eat meat, can you understand the perspective of the Vegan activist? There is a reason our planet is shifting towards a more plant-based lifestyle and perhaps that’s because this is what’s natural, and that what we’ve been taught by big food is not…

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

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Study: Weekly Use of Disinfectants Greatly Increases Your Risk of Fatal Lung Disease

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A 30-year study conducted by Harvard researchers and the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research found that people who use disinfectants once a week have a 22-32% increased chance of developing lung disease.

  • Reflect On:

    How reliable are regulatory agencies when it comes determining how safe the products we use for cleaning are for our health and environment? Did you know that there are a number of effective alternatives and products available out there?

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What Happened: A 30-year study conducted by researchers at Harvard University alongside researchers at the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) found that regular use of bleach and other commonly used disinfectants can increase your chances of developing fatal lung disease. The study found that those who used these types of products just once a week had up to a 32% increased chance of developing the condition.

It’s called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Researchers looked at the incidence of the disease for the study in more than 55,000 nurses in the United States. Nurses were used for the study because they use disinfectants to clean surfaces on a regular basis. In this study population, 37 percent of nurses used disinfectants to clean surfaces on a weekly basis and 19 percent used them to clean medical instruments on a weekly basis.

In the UK alone, COPD is present approximately 1.2 million people. It includes various lung conditions like chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Obviously there are multiple factors that play a role, but according to this study, disinfectants are definitely one of them or at the very least, can’t be ruled out. Correlation may not mean causation but it’s safe to assume that breathing in these substances is not really safe, in my opinion, and can be detrimental to our health.

As far as deaths go, 25,000 people a year die from COPD in England. This number represents the third highest death rate from the disease. This study is thought to be the very first to identify such a link between COPD and specific cleaning products/chemicals known as “quaternary ammonium compounds (quats).”

To the best of our knowledge we are the first to report a link between disinfectants and COPD among healthcare workers, and to investigate specific chemicals that may underlie this association…Some of these disinfectants, such as bleach and quats, are frequently used in ordinary households, and the potential impact of domestic use of disinfectants on COPD development is unknown…Earlier studies have found a link between asthma and exposure to cleaning products and disinfectants at home, such as bleach and sprays, so it is important to investigate this further.- Inserm researcher Orianne Dumas (source)

The researchers analysed data from a mass study on female US nurses commenced by Harvard in 1989. In 2009, they looked at those who were still working as nurses who had no history of COPD and tracked them until May this year. During that period, 663 were diagnosed with the condition.

A follow up study published in 2019 examining more than 70,000 nurses came to the same conclusions.

We found that use of several specific disinfectants was associated with higher risk of COPD development; these included hypochlorite bleach (chlorine), hydrogen peroxide, alcohol, and quaternary ammonium compounds (commonly used for low-level disinfection of noncritical items, such as environmental surfaces) and glutaraldehyde (used for high-level disinfection). Several of these exposures often occurred concurrently, and disentangling the role of each product was challenging. When studying combinations of exposure to specific disinfectants, we found the highest risks of COPD incidence among nurses exposed to hypochlorite bleach or hydrogen peroxide and in those combining these exposures with exposure to aldehydes. Both the chemical properties of specific products and the greater number of products used could explain these elevated risks. Moreover, all of the agents that were associated with COPD incidence when evaluated separately have been described as airway irritants.

Why This Is Important: 

The everyday use of bleach currently has no specific health guidelines, and that’s very true with many other products as well. Cosmetics is a great example, that particular industry is not quite regulated as it should be, and products that do pass through federal health regulatory regulation and inspection are not always safe. Glyphosate is a great example, and there is a growing concern today among academics, journalists and everyday people regarding the close relationship between these regulatory agencies and the companies that manufacture these products. Sure they may work, but the case with many of these products is that there are alternatives that are just as effective and much more safer.

Whether it’s banking soda and vinegar, tea tree oil and lemons, or something else, the market and natural health stores are now filled with cleaning products that do not pose the same threat as mainstream conventional cleaning products. They’re not hard to find, all it takes is a simple internet search, or a trip to your local natural health food store. Many regular chains are also starting to carry more health and environmentally sound cleaning/disinfectant products as well. If you’re truly concerned and put effort into searching, you’ll have no problem finding these products.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

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How Effective is The Covid-19 Vaccine?

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The 95% efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine is widely touted by the media and the medical establishment, but there are important questions to be asked about this claim.

  • Reflect On:

    Are we being given all information available from covid vaccine study to make informed decisions? Are the studies even being done in a way that represents what effects the vaccine may have on the whole population?

Are you going to decline the Covid-19 vaccine if it is offered to you? Why or why not? No matter how certain you are in your reasoning there will no doubt be someone else who feels exactly the opposite to you and will be just as certain of their position. We trust different sources of information, we have had different experiences with vaccines and we have different impressions of the threat of SARS-COV2 to us and our species.

I would suggest that those in the “vaccine cautionary” community would decline the vaccine based on their ideas around its potential risks. On the other hand, supporters of the vaccine are more likely to focus on its potential benefits. The debate has largely been centered around the disagreement people have about the risks. In this essay I will consider the uncertainty I and others have about its benefits.

Is the Medical Community biased about the Vaccine?

As a contributor to Collective Evolution I am well aware of the “cautionary” perspective on vaccinations and CDC directives. As a physician, I have a reasonable understanding of how those in the medical community regard the “best of what modern science has to offer”. I am part of a Physician group on social media where doctors can seek advice from each other around all matters Covid-19, from interesting cases to rare side effects to how to address special concerns raised by patients. It has been alarming to realize how unilateral the support of vaccination is in this community. 

I mean no disrespect to my medical colleagues. Many of those in this community have seen their patients die from this very real virus. They have had to struggle with the divergent directives coming from the CDC. They have had to work through many weeks where Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was in short supply as their hospital wards rapidly reached capacity and overflowed. Now that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have met minimum requirements for efficacy under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), they are faced with yet another impediment to getting themselves and their patients through this pandemic: growing skepticism around the vaccine coming from the very same people they are endeavoring to help. Their frustration around the situation is understandable, but is it biasing them?

Before consenting to any intervention it is important to understand its relative risks and benefits. As I mentioned earlier, there has been much concern in the “vaccine cautionary” sphere about side-effects and deaths. Here I will take a closer look at what we know about the benefits of the vaccine based on Pfizer-Biontech’s  briefing document to the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee. How confident can we be in the efficacy of the vaccine? Has the manufacturer done its due diligence in its analysis and in being transparent? These are the central questions that need to be answered.

Understanding False Positives and Negatives

There has been a lot of discussion about the rate of “false-positives” with regard to the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test for confirming infection with SARS-COV2. The PCR test can return a positive result even if only trace fragments of the virus are present. Fragments of the virus on a nasal swab is not necessarily representative of an active infection or transmissibility. Moreover the sensitivity of this test is dependent on the number of amplification cycles, or the cycle threshold (Ct), used.  The Ct is not standardized. It is not unreasonable to say that there will be a percentage of people who test positive that do not have the disease. Nevertheless, without a better test we as the public must treat all positive PCR tests as an indication of an infection. We must assume the test is right. The rate of false positives, whatever it is, is directly proportional to the overestimation of the prevalence of the disease. 

Here I would like to discuss the significance of “false-negatives”. These are people who get a negative PCR result but may still be infected. The rate of false negatives is directly proportional to the underestimation of disease prevalence. This aspect of the inaccuracy of our primary diagnostic test gets relatively little attention for practical reasons. If you are suffering symptoms consistent with Covid-19 but have a negative PCR test we assume that you have Covid-19 anyway. In other words, if someone is symptomatic we assume that the test is wrong, i.e. that it is a false-negative, and necessary measures are taken. We quarantine and isolate until we feel healthy again whether we have Covid-19 or not. 

Because we are in the midst of a pandemic we have no choice but to make these assumptions. We are responding appropriately given the limitations of the test. Because of the assumptions we are forced to make, we are exaggerating the prevalence of the disease and our response to it to some extent. It is the nature of the situation we are in.

How do we know that the Vaccine is 95% effective?

With this in mind I would like to discuss a post in the opinion blog of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) that appeared earlier this month. The author, Peter Doshi (PhD and Associate Editor at the BMJ), takes a rigorous look at the results reported by Pfizer regarding the efficacy of their mRNA vaccine. The success of their vaccine has been widely publicized to be 95%. Where exactly does this figure come from?

During the four weeks of observation (three weeks between 1st and 2nd dose followed by 7 days), 162 participants who received the placebo expressed symptoms of Covid-19 and tested positive by PCR. Compare that with only 8 in the group that received their experimental vaccine. The chance of getting Covid 19 after receiving the vaccine was about 20 times lower than if you got the placebo. This is the basis of the claim that their vaccine was 95% effective, well over the 50% threshold required for Emergency Use Authorization that allows their product to be deployed despite the fact that the two-year Phase III trial is still 20 months from completion.

How did Pfizer handle study participants in the “Suspected Covid-19” group?

It is less commonly known that of the nearly 38,000 participants in the Pfizer study, 3,410 fell into a group labeled “suspected Covid-19”. These are people who developed symptoms consistent with disease but tested negative by PCR. 1,594 of those in this group received the vaccine and 1,816 received the placebo. It should be quite clear that how we regard this much bigger group of symptomatic participants will have an enormous impact on the true efficacy of the vaccine. In other words, if we assume that the PCR test was accurate in all of these people and that they didn’t have Covid-19 and developed symptoms from another virus, the flu for example, then the vaccine would in fact be 95% effective as reported. On the other hand, if the PCR test was wrong every time and they all in fact had Covid-19, the efficacy of the vaccine would be much different: 1602 (1594 + 8) in the vaccine wing vs. 1978 (1816 + 162) in the placebo wing results in a vaccine efficacy of only 19%. 

The PCR test (like any test) can be wrong some of the time and right some of the time. No test is 100% accurate, however in this situation the accuracy of the PCR test has a very large impact on how we interpret the results of the vaccine trial. The true efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine can be known only if we know how many symptomatic people in each wing had Covid-19 despite testing negative by PCR.

It is likely that the percentage of false negatives are different in each arm. As the FDA briefing document on the Pfizer study and the BMJ piece correctly note, there should be fewer false negatives in the vaccine group. Why? It is because there is a greater chance of developing Covid-19 symptoms after receiving the vaccine compared to getting a placebo. Reactogenicity, or the acute response of the body to the vaccine, is common. Most of the acute inflammatory reaction to the vaccine occurs in the first seven days after receiving the vaccine. Looking more closely at the data, 409 patients in the vaccine group developed symptoms in the first seven days after inoculation. Compare this to 287 in the placebo group. If we assume that any participant who expressed symptoms in the first seven days must be suffering from the side effects of the vaccine or the placebo and not a new Covid-19 infection, the efficacy of the vaccine would still only be 29% if everyone else in that group was a false negative. This is admittedly a very large assumption but it is not outside the realm of possibility.

There are other more extreme possibilities. If all of the vaccinated participants who were suspected of Covid-19 truly did not have the disease and all of the unvaccinated (placebo) participants who were suspect did have the disease we would have a true miracle vaccine. Why? It would mean that only 8 people got the disease in the vaccinated group compared to 1978 in the placebo group. This would mean that the vaccine was approximately 99.6% effective. On the other hand, if all those who got vaccinated in the suspected group got Covid-19 and those who got the placebo didn’t, the vaccine would be not just ineffective, it would be dangerous.

Putting aside extreme and unlikely possibilities, the matter of the 3,412 “suspected Covid-19” participants and our assumptions about them still has very large implications. Let us say hypothetically that we as a nation decide to vaccinate our entire population with the Pfizer vaccine assuming that it has a 95% efficacy in preventing the disease. In other words, we are assuming that none of those “suspected” of having Covid-19 actually have the disease. This is in fact the assumption that the FDA is making when approving the use of the vaccine under the EUA. We can predict that within a month about 6.3% people will develop Covid-like symptoms from something other than vaccine reactogenicity or the disease itself. This is based on the number of participants who became symptomatic (from something other than reactogenicity) despite getting the vaccine and testing negative (1,185) divided by the total number who got the vaccine (18,801) = 0.063. That’s what happened in the study.

In a population of 300 million, we would expect roughly 19 million people to develop symptoms of Covid from something other than SARS-COV2 within a month. We can agree that we must be extremely confident about whether these 19 million people have the disease or not. Why would we assume they all don’t have Covid-19 when the vaccine trial itself considered them to be “suspected” of having it? We won’t. We shouldn’t, and practically speaking, we will be in the same situation we are in right now.

Pfizer either did not do or report additional testing that would have helped

The real issue here is that we shouldn’t be guessing about such important numbers. What do you suppose Pfizer did, knowing that this larger pool of symptomatic participants could have an enormous impact on the estimation of their vaccine’s efficacy? In my opinion, they should have tested everyone who developed symptoms for antibodies to help quantify the percentage of false negative PCR tests. If a participant felt like they were coming down with Covid-19 but had a negative PCR test, it seems clear that performing an antibody test would have offered additional clarity. This was either not done or not reported.

We must be careful when interpreting the power of a vaccine study. Although tens of thousands of people were enrolled, the only meaningful numbers with regard to efficacy have to do with those who contracted the disease during the period of observation. This is the only way to assess the efficacy of the vaccine. When Pfizer only considers participants that became symptomatic and tested positive we only have a group of 170 cases to cross compare.

The 3,410 people who became symptomatic but tested negative during the four weeks of observation would represent a much larger set of cohorts and would amplify the power of the study 20 fold if infection could be confirmed or ruled out through additional testing. In other words, the 3,410 symptomatic people should be the ones that Pfizer were hoping would emerge when they enrolled 37,000+ individuals in their study. I find this lapse in diligence suspicious and at the very least inexplicable, especially in light of the latitude they are granted under the EUA. The fact of the matter is that we do not know if this was done. Pfizer, per their own protocol, will not make this data available until the trial is completed 20 months from now. 

Why didn’t Pfizer look harder?

This forces us to ask some sobering questions. If Pfizer is required (or has agreed) to make all data available in two years, would they have conducted antibody tests on the “suspected Covid” group? If those results told a different story it would be quite damning, if not now, eventually. Their product would not be permitted for use under the EUA if a 50% efficacy requirement could not be met. On the other hand, if antibody tests were conducted and the results confirmed the impressive efficacy of the vaccine, why wouldn’t they have made the data available right now?

It should be clear that if Pfizer’s primary goal was to obtain approval under the EUA they would have had little incentive to do further testing to confirm their product’s efficacy. Why would they take the risk of seeking more information on 3,400 participants that could potentially overturn their results that were based on only 170 outcomes? This is where we must be very careful in our assessment of the situation. If you believe Pfizer and vaccine manufacturers are only out for profit, it would be easy to conclude that they are being manipulative. If you believe that these corporations are seeking to improve public health and safety you may grant them a lot of latitude here. To be truly objective we must ask if they have been scientific in their approach.

At the very least I feel that they have not been diligent, and their position hints at disingenuousness: Pfizer didn’t mention this group of participants in their 92 page report or in their publication in the New England Journal of Medicine. This group was only mentioned in two paragraphs of a 53 page briefing to the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) of the FDA submitted December 10, 2020. The FDA, an agency of the department of Health and Human Services that ostensibly serves to protect the public by ensuring the safety of drugs, biological products and medical devices, continues to remain silent around this issue.

The Take Away

The 95% efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine is widely touted by the media and the medical establishment. Why didn’t Pfizer test or report the testing of an enormously important group of participants in their trial? We can predict that without these additional tests deploying the vaccine will not change our behavior nor our attitude to this pandemic.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

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Norway Investigates 29 Deaths in Elderly Patients After Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccination

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Norway has registered a total of 29 deaths among people over the age of 75 who’ve had their first Covid-19 vaccination shot, raising questions over which groups to target in national inoculation programs.

  • Reflect On:

    Should freedom of choice always remain here? Should governments and private institutions not be allowed to mandate this vaccine in order to have access to certain rights and freedoms?

What Happened: 29 patients who were quite old and frail have died following their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination. As a result, Norwegian officials have since adjusted their advice on who should get the COVID-19 vaccine.

This doesn’t come as a surprise to many given the fact that the clinical trials were conducted with people who are healthy. Older and sick people with co-morbidities were not used in the trials, and people with severe allergies and other diseases that can make one more susceptible to vaccine injury were not used either. It can be confusing given the fact that vaccination is being encouraged for the elderly in nursing homes and those who are more vulnerable to COVID-19.

Steinar Madsen, medical director of the Norwegian Medicines Agency (NOMA), told the British Medical Journal (BMJ) that “There is no certain connection between these deaths and the vaccine.”

On the 15th of January it was 23 deaths, Bloomberg is now reporting that a total of 29 deaths among people over the age of 75 who’ve had their first COVID-19 shot. They point out that “Until Friday, Pfizer/BioNTech was the only vaccine available in Norway”, stating that the Norwegian Medicines Agency told them that as a result “all deaths are thus linked to this vaccine.”

“There are 13 deaths that have been assessed, and we are aware of another 16 deaths that are currently being assessed,” the agency said. All the reported deaths related to “elderly people with serious basic disorders,” it said. “Most people have experienced the expected side effects of the vaccine, such as nausea and vomiting, fever, local reactions at the injection site, and worsening of their underlying condition.”

Madsen also told the BMJ that,

There is a possibility that these common adverse reactions, that are not dangerous in fitter, younger patients and are not unusual with vaccines, may aggravate underlying disease in the elderly. We are not alarmed or worried about this, because these are very rare occurrences and they occurred in very frail patients with very serious disease. We are not asking for doctors to continue with vaccination, but to carry out extra evaluation of very sick people whose underlying condition might be aggravated by it. This evaluation includes discussing the risks and benefits of vaccination with the patient and their families to decide whether or not vaccination is the best course.

The BMJ article goes on to point out that the Paul Ehrlich Institute in Germany is also investigating 10 deaths shortly after COVID-19 vaccination, and closes with the following information:

In a statement, Pfizer said, “Pfizer and BioNTech are aware of reported deaths following administration of BNT162b2. We are working with NOMA to gather all the relevant information.

“Norwegian authorities have prioritised the immunisation of residents in nursing homes, most of whom are very elderly with underlying medical conditions and some of whom are terminally ill. NOMA confirm the number of incidents so far is not alarming, and in line with expectations. All reported deaths will be thoroughly evaluated by NOMA to determine if these incidents are related to the vaccine. The Norwegian government will also consider adjusting their vaccination instructions to take the patients’ health into more consideration.

“Our immediate thoughts are with the bereaved families.”

Vaccine Hesitancy is Growing Among Healthcare Workers: Vaccine hesitancy is growing all over the globe, one of the latest examples comes from Riverside County, California. It has a population of approximately 2.4 million, and about 50 percent of healthcare workers in the county are refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine despite the fact that they have top priority and access to it.  At Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Mission Hills, one in five frontline nurses and doctors have declined the shot. Roughly 20% to 40% of L.A. County’s frontline workers who were offered the vaccine did the same, according to county public health officials. You can read more about that story here.

Vaccine hesitancy among physicians and academics is nothing new. To illustrate this I often point to a conference held at the end of 2019 put on by the World Health Organization (WHO). At the conference, Dr. Heidi Larson a Professor of Anthropology and the Risk and Decision Scientist Director at the Vaccine Confidence Project Emphasized this point, having  stated,

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…still, the most trusted person on any study I’ve seen globally is the health care provider.

A study published in the journal EbioMedicine  as far back as 2013 outlines this point, among many others.

Pfizer’s Questionable History:  Losing faith in “big pharma” does not come without good reason. For example, in 2010 Robert G. Evans, PhD, Centre for Health Services and Policy Research Emeritus Professor, Vancouver School of Economics, UBC, published a paper that’s accessible in PubMed titled “Tough on Crime? Pfizer and the CIHR.”

In it, he outlines the fact that,

Pfizer has been a “habitual offender,” persistently engaging in illegal and corrupt marketing practices, bribing physicians and suppressing adverse trial results. Since 2002 the company and its subsidiaries have been assessed $3 billion in criminal convictions, civil penalties and jury awards. The 2.3-billion settlement…set a new record for both criminal fines and total penalties. A link with Pfizer might well advance the commercialization of Canadian research.

Suppressing clinical trial results is something I’ve come across multiple times with several different medicines. Five years ago I wrote about how big pharma did not share adverse reactions people had and harmful results from their clinical trials for commonly used antidepressant drugs.

Even scientists from within federal these health regulatory agencies have been sounding the alarm. For example, a few years ago more than a dozen scientists from within the CDC put out an anonymous public statement detailing the influence corporations have on government policies. They were referred to as the  Spider Papers.

The Takeaway: Given the fact that everything is not black and white, especially when it comes to vaccine safety, do we really want to give government health agencies and/or private institutions the right to enforce mandatory vaccination requirements when their efficacy have been called into question? Should people have the freedom of choice? It’s a subject that has many people polarized in their beliefs, but at the end of the day the sharing of information, opinion and evidence should not be shut down, discouraged, ridiculed or censored.

In a day and age where more people are starting to see our planet in a completely different light, one which has more and more questioning the human experience and why we live the way we do it seems the ‘crack down’ on free thought gets tighter and tighter. Do we really want to live in a world where we lose the right to choose what we do with our own body, or one where certain rights and freedoms are taken away if we don’t comply? The next question is, what do we do about it? Those who are in a position to enforce these measures must, it seems, have a shift in consciousness and refuse to implement them. There doesn’t seem to be a clear cut answer, but there is no doubt that we are currently going through that possible process, we are living in it.

Dive Deeper

These days, it’s not just knowing information and facts that will create change, it’s changing ourselves, how we go about communicating, and re-assessing the underlying stories, ideas and beliefs that form our world. We have to practice these things if we truly want to change. At Collective Evolution and CETV, this is a big part of our mission.

Amongst 100's of hours of exclusive content, we have recently completed two short courses to help you become an effective changemaker, one called Profound Realization and the other called How To Do An Effective Media Detox.

Join CETV, engage with these courses and more here!

Continue Reading
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