the classic "Measles" wedge issue roars its way back into presidential politics after a long dormant period following Zachary Taylor's death
— #con?en? r???g?d? (@Bro_Pair) February 2, 2015
Rand Paul: Parents "Own" Children, Not the State, So Vaccines Should Be Voluntary (Really? Parents "own" kids?) http://t.co/ovqaulrgvL
— Charles Johnson (@Green_Footballs) February 3, 2015
just like abortion. oh. wait. RT @Olivianuzzi: What Rand Paul's press office is saying about his vaccine comments: pic.twitter.com/yCFvookof7
— Tim Dickinson (@7im) February 2, 2015
Next level troll game pic.twitter.com/N5keQdEUUL
— daveweigel (@daveweigel) February 2, 2015
… And the sensible (ergo, disqualifying) comment from an actual brain surgeon:
Dr. Ben Carson, a potential Republican presidential candidate, on Monday strongly backed vaccinations, splitting from two possible rivals who suggested parents should decide whether to immunize their children.
“Although I strongly believe in individual rights and the rights of parents to raise their children as they see fit, I also recognize that public health and public safety are extremely important in our society,” Carson, one of the world’s most prominent and well-regarded pediatric neurosurgeons, told The Hill in a statement.
“Certain communicable diseases have been largely eradicated by immunization policies in this country and we should not allow those diseases to return by foregoing safe immunization programs, for philosophical, religious or other reasons when we have the means to eradicate them,” he added…
Actually, I suspect the backlash against anti-vaxxer woo is more dangerous to Christie than Paul; Christie is being presented as the “centrist, establishment” alternative to GOP voters who can’t quite stomach another Bush, while even those Rand supporters who don’t embrace dark theories about thimerosal poisoning are proud supporters of the right to die needlessly because LIBERTY!!!
They didn’t waste any time after election day bringing out the crazy, did they?
Any evidence this latest bit is peeling off any more “I will always vote Republican because my ancestors voted Republican” voters? Or are we completely down to the hard-core crazy base now?
It’s been awhile since I read a “that was the last straw” quote from someone with a Republican relative.
So Rand Paul believes in everything and nothing – as usual.
We laugh, they cry all the way to the Senate Majority Leader’s office.
I wonder how Rand Paul feels about driving while intoxicated? After all, imbibing in legal intoxicants is a personal choice and most folks who drive while intoxicated do so without every injuring themselves or others.
Yet our many governments have decided that driving while intoxicated is enough of danger that it is quite heavily penalized.
Aren’t anti vax parents acting the same way as intoxicated drivers? There is a very good chance that nothing bad will come of it, but if things do go wrong, it can go wrong in a very severe and even disastrous way for them and others.
@Keith G: I was thinking of exactly the same analogy yesterday.
I don’ t think President Obama realized how much he trolled the Republican Party when made his statement Sunday night to Savannah Guthrie that all children should get vaccinated unless a specific medical condition prevents it. This has always been a latent issue with the Right since their basic syllogism is:
1. All Government (except National Defense/Making War/Suppressing minorities&dissenters (think Slave patrols) is incompetent or evil and destroys individual (white male) liberty, Christianity, and self-reliance.
2. Program B is a Government Program.
3. Therefore, Program B is evil, corrupt, and destroys individual liberty, Christianity, and self-reliance, and must be opposed and eliminated.
Insert for “Program B” “public health and vaccination,” and the ideological logic (along with a great deal of associated sociopathic and narcissistic emotions – “my kids are special and pure”) leads the right to the Anti-vaccine position. Then you add Obama derangement syndrome, and how that triggers Faux News talking heads, Limbaugh, and Levine, etc to immediately oppose anything Obama says.
However, being anti-vaccine and anti-public health is so blatantly crazy and idiotic that even Ben Carson can see it. (See http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/02/02/1361507/-Your-right-to-believe-in-nonsense-should-end-when-you-start-spreading-a-highly-contagious-disease?showAll=yes). The Right-wing entertainment industrial complex dodged this issue (and the above logic) for years until this measles outbreak and Obama’s comment. Now this is their choice. Admit that “public health and vaccinations” are “good and necessary” and that tax money should be spent and individuals coerced (or at least shamed) into doing what is good for society as a whole, and individuals not in their immediate family, despite an extraordinarily small risk and cost, which means admitting the Liberal case. And that is something Movement Conservatives cannot do, and hence the shark jumping on this issue.
About your comment…..
These proud Libertarians never believe that they will suffer because of their foolish choices, but are perfectly okay with other people, who cannot be vaccinated for actual medical reasons, to suffer and die.
And also, is Mr. Carson really a world reknown and respected pediatric neurosurgeon or is this just more PR flackery?
Anne, The above statement is wrong. They are not in favor of a “right to die” (Terry Schaivo?) in the name of LIBERTY!!!, they are, again, in favor of a “right to kill” (somebody else’s child), because yes, some children do die from measles and whooping cough and ad infinitim, just not theirs.
The solution to this conundrum is really quite simple: Make the parents of an unvaccinated (for no good medical reason), infectious child legally liable for any and all medical costs arising from such an outbreak, said liabilities not subject to discharge thru bankruptcy. Insurance companies would love that.
Culture of Truth
Does Carson favor making vaccines mandatory? Because that could cost him the nomination he was never going to get.
@NorthLeft12: Beat me to it, but Yeah, Ben Carson is a very accomplished neurosurgeon.
This issues makes me absolutely furious. An absolute new low from the party that knows no lower limits. Yes, we knew they were anti-science, but this takes it to a whole new level, a level that brings things back to the 1600s at the latest. My usual reaction to this type of stupidity is to point and laugh, but in this case the stupidity will lead to dead children so there is really nothing to laugh at.
@beltane: The left wingers I know that are anti-vaxx that really piss me off.
Also, it does make one wonder what would happen if President Obama came out for breathing and not drinking cyanide laced coffee. It might dent that 59% of the White Vote that now votes Republican for tribal and racial reasons. http://www.newrepublic.com/article/118145/scott-walkers-toxic-racial-politics
Walker going for Voter ID, cutting the funding for the University of Wisconsin and bashing its professors, and drug testing food stamp and unemployment recipients is providing “Red Meat” to his base. http://www.newrepublic.com/article/118145/scott-walkers-toxic-racial-politics
Unreal, Joe and DeMint agree!
@raven: All the anti-vaxxers I know are of the left wing variety and they have been pissing me off for years. However, I now fear the GOP has mainstreamed the craziness to white, exurban America.
Not mutually exclusive.
Here is more pro-Carson PR flackery, but it’s fact-based and tells you about his work.
@Baud: $$, Actually Carville is giving it to him pretty good!
Relevant (via Reddit)
I hope they agree to give me some.
Iowa Old Lady
I really don’t understand how failure to vaccinate isn’t child neglect.
@Baud: Love it!
looks like carson is trying to stake himself a claim.
@Iowa Old Lady:
But you have to admit, it’s hardly the only symptom of child neglect you see as you look at our nation’s kids.
I can’t believe the GOP now has an intra-party debate on vaccination. It reminds me of the presidential debates in 2008. I thought all the really relevant questions of the day were already being discussed in the democratic primary debates, you know, healthcare, foreign policy and war, immigration… and then, after a couple of high profile Clinton-vs-the field debates, there comes a republican debate and it’s a completely different world. Going through the looking glass and all that…
Are there any leftwing politicians who are anti-vax? I understand that some nuts on the left may be anti-vax, but I cannot imagine any Democratic politician coming out and stating such a ridiculous position.
@Patricia Kayden: There are probably some on the local level. I know that when Vermont tried to tighten up the rules for “philosophical exemption” last year, the Democratic legislature folded in the face of loud opposition from obnoxious hippies.
That parents “own” children is the real crux of the problem for Rand Paul, I think, because it ties into a whole set of (mostly) Right wing issues- they’re really convinced that there’s a whole group of people who are trying to seize/indoctrinate/control their children. If you listen to him on education he panders to this. He puts a libertarian spin on issues that are important to (mostly) religious fundamenatalists.
Religious fundamenalists DO approach their rights regarding their children like property rights and that part feeds right into libertarian language and theory.
Some people are unhappy with Jerry Brown, governor of California.
Is that true? I’ve never heard that he’s a crappy doctor and I don’t doubt that he’s well respected in his field, but that seems a bit much.
The nominally left-wing anti-vaxxers are also of a mostly libertarian mindset so the distinction between the Duggar wannabees and the Gwyneth Paltrow wannabees is not a great as one might think.
It seems strange to say that parents own their children when they still can’t legally buy and sell their children in an open market.
he’s actually a pretty big deal in his field.
@Baud: Give the Republicans time.
Dreaming with Jeff Bridges- You have to hear this.
I think so, too. It’s exactly the same “rights” language – my, me, mine. I wonder if they notice and if they end up at the same place as Right wingers do- with children portrayed as property of the parents.
@chopper: All I can say is- Huh. (No question mark!) I can’t remember the last time a GOP pol was good for anything, much less good at it.
You’ve touched on exactly the reason Carson is popular on the right and is even being talked about as a presidential candidate. He stands out in that way.
This doctor makes Carson seem more than reasonable:
Libertarianism in a nutshell.
@Baud: You’re not going to the right markets.
I think the image of Rand Paul shushhing a female anchor isn’t going to play well either. It also speaks to his overall issues with women and I think it will get him into problems during a national campaign. He’s a misogynist jerk and that will come out the more visibility he gets.
It’s fun to watch it fall apart as a workable theory when it gets complicated. I’ve seen it crash and burn when another “title owner” makes a claim- the grandparents. Right wingers are big on BOTH parents rights and grandparents rights and of course those two groups of people do not always agree :)
We don’t really have “grandparents rights” in Ohio because it’s a fairly radical notion-statutory “rights” for a new set of people- “parents trump” is the much more traditional posture- but conservatives all use the phrase and they are madly in love with the idea of pursuing it.
People who don’t vaccinate are wrong and misinformed, absolutely. But I think assuming they are all assholes is not helpful to bringing them back to sanity. First, western medicine has a non-zero record of giving out medicine to the masses with disastrous effects, which were often not faced up to but required public outcry to bring to light. There is a kind of willful blindness I have seen first hand. I dont think that is the case with vaccines but it is naive to pretend it never happens (cigarettes are good for you! Etc) Secondly there ARE real vaccine injuries. Fortunately they are rare. My cousin got a bad MMR vaccine as a baby and was a drooling, paralyzed, non-communicative vegetable for twelve more years until she died of pneumonia. This is a documented case and their was a settlement with the drug co. Even though this happened in my own family, I was still vaccinated, as my kids will be. But to bring people around you need reasoned argument, not trash-talking.
Well, on the one hand, scientists say that vaccines are safe and prevent children from catching severe and debilitating evidence and all of this is backed by hard scientific evidence and the experience of billions of people worldwide.
And on the other hand, some people say based on an internet story, religious quackery, a disgraced doctor, and a former Playboy model that vaccines cause harm to children.
So, you know, both sides have equal views that must be respected.
I just read about that. No War on Women there. Shush, sweetie.
How long before chlorine is removed from our water?
For example, in some contexts, infant mortality goes down when vaccinations are withheld.
Not the whole story, obviously, but it’s the kind of thing that can get in the way of understanding.
One takes work, the other is cheap.
Not too long, I hope.
And what about the kids’ rights to trade up to better parents? When will somebody start thinking of the children?
Now you’re in UN black-helicopter territory.
True. I’ve never been to the Ozarks. ;-)
@Randy P: The Republican Primary Wing-Nuts on parade, along with a gradually improving economy, is probably the best hope for the Democrats moving forward. I still think Scott Walker is potentially a very talented politician and sociopath and that nobody does a better job of exploiting with middle class and working class white voters the combination of anti-tax, anti-union, and anti-Government spending (which goes to those people).
John Judis article (which is big turn around for him as he has been arguing that Democrats have built in demographic advantage for years http://www.nationaljournal.com/magazine/the-emerging-republican-advantage-20150130) shows Democrats really have a thin margin of error on taxes, spending, and good government. When they don’t deliver tax cuts and don’t restrain spending and manage Government well (see Jerry Brown, Califorinia), then large number voters turn to Republicans because they it is the one thing they have done with their brand, that every one knows they are the “anti-tax party.” I wish Obama had made his message on taxes simpler by just increasing the Personal Exemption by $5,000 while raising the offsetting funds with tax surcharge on incomes over $1,000,000. He also has to keep reminding everyone that 90% of the budget is Social Security, Medicare, National Defense, and interest on the debt (because the media simply won’t report it) and this is spending everyone agrees on.
@sparrow: A reasoned argument: Penn and Teller.
(I posted this a couple days ago, time to link it again)
@Sherparick: Let’s see how Walker does when he has to appeal to people beyond white suburban Wisconsinites.
@sparrow: Actually, they’ve done studies, nothing from mockery to well reasoned argument works. Jamelle Bouie covered this yesterday. The only thing that works is coercion. There’s actually a long history of this going back to the 19th century of individuals fighting quarantine and vaccinations in the courts. Typhoid Mary is a famous example on quarantine. And the science of epidemiology/public health was relatively new then.
There’s a theory for that! It swings wildly because (shocker!) people aren’t rational abbout children. Twenty years ago there were two competing theories for state intervention in children’s safety- “best” home or “good enough” home. They eventually reached a compromise, but “good enough” was the actual phrase used and that pushed it towards parents rights and away from the state. It’s a FINE compromise. Both extremes were a little nuts. Cooler heads prevailed but it takes twenty years, minimum, for the crazy to work thru the system.
I’m watching it happen with “youthful sex offenders”. They went completely insane in the “lock ’em up” direction and now that’s coming home to roost. It’s like watching people come off a bender-they’re all blearly eyed and remorseful- “what the FUCK did we DO?” It would be easier if they would not go so crazy in the first place but, again, people aren’t rational about children.
@JPL: Yeah, the old Bircher nonsense about fluoride in drinking water has come roaring back in the last few years too. Removing chlorine can’t be far behind, I’ve already seen the loons state that chlorine gas from chlorinated water in your shower will kill you. How we’ve all survived up to now is a miracle.
Tell that to the Nationwide kid.
Having had measles as a wee one, it ain’t no picnic. Having to spend several days in bed in a darkened room severely limits what one can do to pass the time.
As for the insane right wingers, several of the Founding Fathers survived smallpox. Should we reintroduce that in the name of so-called limited government originalism?
I had heard of Ben Carson as a neurosurgeon (he was once head of the department at Johns Hopkins, arguably the best dept in the world) before I ever heard of him as a politician.
It always surprises me when someone that brainy is that wingnutty, but as I always remind myself, wingnuttery is not about a lack of intellectual intelligence. It spans the full range, from Sarah Palin to Ben Carson. I do believe it has something to do with emotional intelligence, though.
@JPL: You could allow 24 hours for chlorine to evaporate from water, or mere moments for a filter to do the trick.
It take a little over 5 minutes exposure to a libertarian before you build immunity to bullshit, tho.
It’s not just children. Remember “irrational exuberance” and the stock market. People invent these worlds for themselves, but eventually reality catches up.
Well, both sides do it because Obama
toldpandered to onelots of anti-vaxxers in 2008 by saying we should vaccinate our kids and that the science isn’t clear on what’s causing autism to spike. And so on.
So vote Republican.
Well, good for Ben Carson.
@lol: Luckily for our side, Secretary Clinton has come out unequivocally for vaccination so we’re saved from voting for Republicans this time around. /snark
Sad that in such a developed country, whether or not to vaccinate your kids is an actual, controversial political issue. Sigh.
Unfortunately a large number of people with suppressed immune systems become infected and most of them never recover.
You can always watch Fox News like the Founding Fathers.
Abigail Adams was in favor of smallpox innoculation and had herself and her children innoculated in 1775.
Dr. Mr. Dr. Barbone had an attenuated live MMR — his first ever — yesterday. He had killed vaccine as a child and the CDC recommends at least one modern booster. This applies to people born between 1957 and 1967.
No profound mental disorder, yet.
i dont think christie is going to run for prez anyway, just a bit of a gut feeling to be honest.
How did we get here? What the fuck? Vaccines are not open for debate, Jesus effing Christ.
I haven’t agreed with a Republican since Ike, but this…I agree with.
THIS IS NOT THE ONION.
Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) argued this week that restaurants should be able to “opt out” of health department regulations that require employees to wash their hands after using the bathroom.
Bob In Portland
Rand Paul just wants diseases to operate in the free market.
Meanwhile, I would be curious as to why the US would seek to get Russia to stop backing Assad, and after putting all sorts of sanctions against Russia and creating a Nazi regime hostile to Russia on its borders and pressuring the EU to separate itself from Russia’ natural gas, destabilizing Chechnya with support of Wahhabists, that Russia would want to cut a deal with the House of Saud and the US. First, it seems to suggest that the US policy, I’m shocked to say, has to do with energy, and not so much to do with the spreading of democracy.
I’m curious as to BJers process this within their concept of the Great Game being played. Is the US ready to throw in the towel with Ukraine? If Putin is our current BAD MAN and Russia is the current center of evil, then the NYTimes is suggesting, Well, maybe not that bad.
Are BJers ready to bury the hatchet with Putin et al for the sake of the Sunnis bottling up the Shia? I know it’s been a long time since BJ had a blog on Ukraine, or even Russia, so I’m wondering how this article is interpreted in the BJ Mind. My guess is that the contradictions of the propaganda most here have swallowed is too hard to maintain, so most here will prefer to ignore it.
Bob In Portland