Vaccine Pandemonium

The screenshots below were supplied to me via text message. My friend is worried about the safety and efficacy of the newly developed vaccines for SARS CoV 2. Many are in the same camp and it is unfortunate that the healthy scientific research and debate has been politicised by so many internet trolls.

Fortunately it is not widespread. It seems restricted to a small number of bloggers and science non-readers with a smattering of internet charlatans.

From the — their actual words:

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My discussion with my friend is an interesting conversation with someone who claims to not read much.

Reading is the single most important thing we teach our children. It could be that reading non-fictional articles is not discussed in schools as well as it should be. Reading enough to discover the author’s credentials and authority this is the single most important thing we teach our young adults. That is merely an opinion of mine. The author of the web hosting service is, however, saying just that. It is up to you the reader to determine truth or untruth. Hard to do if you do not read much.

None of the illustrations above are MEMEs. (Except Willy Wonka) They are merely examples of internet, Twitter and Facebook trolls.

Geoffrey Liddy led me to and from their About Page:

Here at Brand New Tube we want our users to enjoy building their own personality up on our platform.
There are so many additions on the way…including live stream but more of that later.
Rest assured however, we will not de-platform you, remove your content simply because it may question a particular narrative or upset someone else’s point of view.
Yes we have guidelines and standards but as certain platforms have shown recently, some individuals having their channel removed from certain platforms…we simply would not do that!
So we say…join our platform and share what you have with the rest of the World.

Suspicious writing indeed but it goes with the author of One is on one’s own to determine truth and validity and perhaps even veracity.

Geoffrey Liddy is simply wrong. Side effects data is part of the research data. No one is hiding anything. Perhaps Geoff did not want to pay to read the research? Ordinarily there is a fee associated and most university libraries subscribe to the research publishing services. No one reads it to you and provides analysis for free. That is what journalistic researchers do for a living.

The third piece is merely a collection of words. Searching for source I discovered several articles both debunking the facts of this and describing the circumstance of the pseudo quote. I use pseudo because all the articles have 87,000 as the number, so 89,000 is merely wrong but other grammar errors imply the writers first language is not English. Perhaps he is a foreign troll. It has an unknown source but the author calls his audience “sheep” so it is doubtful that he is attempting to win the hearts and minds with considered and thoughtful prose. Unsupported rant is not journalism and certainly not truth.

In contrast with that Joseph Mercola is a master marketer masquerading as a knowledgeable person. He is very good at it and never calls his readers sheep. This from Wikipedia:

Joseph Michael Mercola is an American alternative medicine proponent, osteopathic physician, and Internet business person. He markets dietary supplements and medical devices, some of which are controversial. Until 2013, Mercola operated the “Dr. Mercola Natural Health Center” in Schaumburg, Illinois. 


Mercola LLC, brought in roughly $7 million in 2010 through the sale of a variety of alternative medicine treatments and dietary supplements.


This information is troubling in that Dr. Joe’s motivation may be less than completely altruistic in nature. Greed might play a part.

An article in BusinessWeek criticized his website as using aggressive direct-marketing tactics, writing:

Mercola gives the lie to the notion that holistic practitioners tend to be so absorbed in treating patients that they aren’t effective business people. While Mercola on his site seeks to identify with this image by distinguishing himself from “all the greed-motivated hype out there in health-care land”, he is a master promoter, using every trick of traditional and Internet direct marketing to grow his business … He is selling health-care products and services, and is calling upon an unfortunate tradition made famous by the old-time snake oil salesmen of the 1800s.

Another charlatan and modern day snake oil salesman. Dr. Mercola is an osteopath. He also knows very little about Parkinson’s Disease and appears to prey on people with chronic illness. He seems disingenuous with a website full of hyperbole. One must be skeptical of hyperbole.

Journalists and editors can make mistakes. It an article in the Atlantic Magazine a grievous error was made. And they admitted to it. Admittedly this is not fiction. This is a technical article and the Atlantic staff apologizes for a technical mistake.

A subtle difference Disease v. Infection but important

Infection — An infection is the invasion of an organism’s body tissues by disease-causing agents, their multiplication, and the reaction of host tissues to the infectious agents and the toxins they produce. An infectious disease, also known as a transmissible disease or communicable disease, is an illness resulting from an infection.

Disease — A disease is a particular abnormal condition that negatively affects the structure or function of all or part of an organism, and that is not due to any immediate external injury. Diseases are often known to be medical conditions that are associated with specific signs and symptoms. A disease may be caused by external factors such as pathogens or by internal dysfunctions. For example, internal dysfunctions of the immune system can produce a variety of different diseases, including various forms of immunodeficiency, hypersensitivity, allergies and autoimmune disorders.

Not the same thing but closely related to each other. The editors should have caught that. They did not and apologized for the error. Journalism at its best. Internet trolls have no such compunction or interest.

Charlatans never make mistakes. There is a difference between hesitancy and thoughtful discussion about vaccines their development and societal benefits but paranoia and the purposeful spread of false information is not useful to the discussion.