In all history books about ancient Greek culture, we read about the Agora, the place in Athens near the Akropolis where the politicians, the influencial elderly men, gathered and discussed politics. They were the VIP's, the decision makers, the lobbyists.
Yet democracy was not born there. Its craddle is located on a hill just opposite the Akropolis, the PNYKA. Although most tourists pay no heed to it, it is, somehow, more important than the Akropolis itself because, while on the Akropolis the elite was gouverning the country, Kleisthenes invited every free Athenian citizen, from 508 b.C. on, to take part in political discussions to contribute to the decision making in his community.
This site wants to be a little "Pnyka" of its own, a forum where opinions, intentions and concerns can be shared and discussed. May it be our humble contribution to democracy.
Being against the abuse of dangerous and unnecessary vaccines is often the first impulse for people to stand up and act. Most of the time this is not the result of a theoretical analysis of the facts. The first push generally is an experience of the destruction caused by vaccines, and the feeling of pity and sympathy toward the victims, or anger toward all those who do not care, or who do not even accept the fact that those victims exist.
Abolishing the majority of vaccines, if not all of them, seems to be a logical next step. But then you hear the advocates of vaccines shout at you, how cruel you are to leave all those poor infants subject to disease and death without protection... What an evil mind one must have to do this...
It is a fact that disease and death occur, and that all measures should be taken to avoid as much suffering as possible. But the question is: how? What alternatives do we have to vaccination?
Many people have tried to experiment with alternative ways to obtain antibodies against specific germs associated with disease. The so called 'homeopathic vaccination' is an example of this. Others accept a number of vaccines, provided that one keeps looking for 'better', safer products.
I believe one has to go to the heart of the question in order to come up with relevant alternatives. I have strong feelings that many of us do not even agree upon the basic question: what do we have to prevent? Many people have accepted the idea that disease itself is our number one enemy, and that we have to eradicate it by all means to make mankind healthier and happier. I do not agree with this at all. I believe that disease is inherent to human and animal life, as much as birth and death are. I even think it is a blessing to us, since disease is nothing less than a reaction from within to establish new order, a new, oftentimes temporary balance. It is our only way to deal with outside factors that are able to destabilize our basic balance (homeostasis). Without disease there is no reaction, so there can be nothing but death. That is why AIDS is such a terrible situation: it is a state in which the immune system is on the verge of collapse, and leaves the body with little defence. Eventually, there is no more reaction from the immune system, therefore, there is no more disease. AIDS, somehow, can be considered to be not a disease, but the opposite of a disease: the face of death.
So, if it is not disease we have to avoid, what is it then? The answer is very simple: it is the deterioration of disease, the complications of disease, the situation in which the immune system is not capable any longer to deal with the imbalance, and loses control. That is where people get really ill and occasionally die.
But how can we do that, then? I am sure the answer to that is not a simple one, many things can contribute. It would be good to discuss that, too, in these pages. But whatever the technique is, the outcome always must be a strenghtening of the immune system. Doesn't that bring us back to vaccinations? No, definitely not, since vaccinations produce exactly the opposite effect: a weakening of the overall response capacity and a confusion of the immune system.
Many publications have illustrated how famine, war, poor housing and crowded living conditions, a lack of clean water etc. are the the conditions that create the outbreak of many diseases, and influence their severity a great deal. Better nourishment, however, has caused a steep decrease in morbidity and mortality in past decades. This is the true problem. The real answer to childhood mortality is not vaccination, but sanitation.
The real threat to infants is poverty, and the ultimate and only alternative to that is development.
This world does not need vaccines, it needs justice.
But, unfortunately, justice does not sell that well...
Kris Gaublomme, MD
IVN, December 1993
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Most certainly, vaccination strategies are as much a political issue as a medical one, as it can be proven that the benefits from the vaccination campaigns are far less than pretended, the risks much higher than confessed, and the study of long term effects completely neglected. This is more than strange for a measure that is imposed on virtually entire nations! Past campaigns, as much as the one that is actually(1994) going on in the UK, prove that major forces are at work to push vaccination programmes, without much scientific evidence for the good they do. The information to the public about the consequences of such campaigns are nonexistent, the manipulation and social pressure on the other hand, are tremendous. In papers, on TV, parents are urged by all means to line up and have their 5 to 15 year old revaccinated against measles and rubella, NO MATTER IF THEY ALREADY HAVE BEEN VACCINATED OR EVEN HAVE HAD THE DISEASE! Not a word about contra-indications, not a word about possible side effects, not a single garantee for help if anything goes wrong with the child after the vaccination.
I was in London a while ago, where The Infommed Parent organised a meeting for parents. What we heard from the parents is that those who filled in the "I do not consent with the vaccination of my child" form received another "Yes, I do consent" form, with the explanation that "there is really no reason to say no", with the strong advice to withdraw their refusal and fill in the Yes-form. Also, the head of a public school who was present stated that, at a meeting with colleagues, they were told by officials to consider pupils who had not handed in their form as consenters and have them vaccinated. Just yesterday, I heard about some pupils who were vaccinated although they had handed in a No-form. So individual freedom is absolutely being abused by the government. Why?
As to the reasons for such coercion, my idea is that we have a multi-facetted situation here, a dragon with many heads.
One reason is obvious: the major financial interests of the pharmaceutical industries. The production of vaccines is a multi-billion dollar business.
Another leg is the interest of the academic medical world, again with two aspects. First there is the professional prestige of being an expert in the field of immunology, which is considered to be a parade horse in medicine. Parallel to that, I suppose there is a personal financial gain for those "who did their best" to promote and upgrade (read: expand) vaccination schemes. By the time "they" find out about the real value of new discoveries, the money has long been earned anyway.
Third, there is the economic dependence of academic staff on private funding to go on with their research. This funding comes from pharmaceutical industries, who, in turn, of course, expect their "pets" to do something "useful" with all that money.
Fourth, there is the government which takes part also for several reasons. One obvious reason is that they can pretend to be doing something really useful for the entire population (cfr. the Clinton- policy). Then, mass vaccination is a means of controlling the entire population and disciplining them, to have them all in line, to train them in obediance for whatever Big Brother tells them to do. This, obviously, has advantageous sides for a society that tends to become more authoritarian (cfr. rise in right-wing extremist movements).
Not to be forgotten is the impact of heaith care organisations, who, by means of local health visitors, cling to vaccinations as their major reason for mingling with young families and confirming their impact. It sure looks like they made it their main reason of existence. It, therefore, provokes existential fears in these organisations when vaccinations are being questioned. The political impact of these organisations is minimal: they rather execute what decision makers tell them to do. But their role is essential in that they are to fill the holes in the nets, make sure no one escapes from vaccination routines, and, thus, make coercion work even in the absense of laws that make these vaccines mandatory.
For the system/government these organisations are of great importance, since first of all they make the system waterproof. Moreover, they consist of well trained nurse-soldiers, who are used to obeying, are sufficient in number for the job, and are not as expensive as medical doctors. Finally, they help to install a regime which is dictatorial in effect, but saves the government the cost and the trouble inherent in vaccination laws which would expose their real responsibility, and, therefore, would cost handfulls of money for the compensation of victims.
This kind of analysis leads me to the conclusion that the struggle for freedom of choice as to vaccination is more than the struggle for the most elementary rights of the individual. It is also a political struggle for an open, free and democratic society, in which coercion and emotional/economic blackmail have no place.
Kris Gaublomme, MD
IVN September 1994
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