Skip to comments.The right and wrong way to talk about Gardasil; Update: A really, really stupid attack on Palin
Posted on 09/13/2011 12:27:11 PM PDT by Anamnesis
A month ago, I was “fringe” for spotlighting Rick Perry’s Gardasil problem.
As I said then, it’s not just a “single-issue,” one-off problem. It’s about his instincts, judgment, non-apology apology, and ethics.
For everyone still catching up, here’s my column from a month ago.
Now, Gardasil is the search word of the day. And there’s a new development.
After successfully highlighting Perry’s troubling abuse of executive power during last night’s debate, Michele Bachmann risks blowing it with some factually inaccurate assertions.
She’s RIGHT on the principles, wrong on some of the details.
She needs to stay on message and stick with the facts.
The Texas state legislature repealed the order (over Perry’s hysterical objections) before any girl was forcibly vaccinated.
And while individual stories of Gardasil harm may or may not be true (Bachmann cited a mother who thinks the vaccine caused mental retardation in her child while making the post-debate rounds), it’s not the primary case she should be making.
Again: Bachmann is RIGHT on the principles, but it gets dicey citing cases where individual anecdotes need to be vetted before tossing them out on TV. She came dangerously close to using the same demagogic tactics Perry employed in obstinately defending the order even after it was repealed. Reminder:
Trampling the deliberative process. Since Day One, President Obama has short-circuited transparency, public debate and congressional oversight. How can Perry effectively challenge the White House’s czar fetish, stealth recess appointments, selective waiver-mania and backdoor legislating through administrative orders when Perry himself employed the very same process as governor?
Not only did Perry defend going above the heads of elected state legislators, but his office also falsely claimed the legislature had no right to repeal the executive order. “The order is effective until Perry or a successor changes it, and the Legislature has no authority to repeal it,” Perry spokeswoman Krista Moody told The Washington Post in February 2007.
When both the House and Senate repealed the law six weeks later, Perry did not — as he now claims — listen humbly or “agree with their decision.”
Human shield demagoguery. In response to the legislature’s rebuke, the infuriated governor attacked those who supported repeal as “shameful” spreaders of “misinformation” who were putting “women’s lives” at risk. Borrowing a tried-and-true Alinskyite page from the progressive left, Perry surrounded himself with female cervical cancer victims and deflected criticism of his imperial tactics with emotional anecdotes.
He then lionized himself and the minority of politicians who voted against repeal of his Gardasil order. “They will never have to think twice about whether they did the right thing. No lost lives will occupy the confines of their conscience, sacrificed on the altar of political expediency.” Perry, of course, has now put his own ghastly Gardasil order on that same altar — but with no apology to all those he demonized and exploited along the way.
The point is that Perry rushed to mandate the Merck-pushed order less than 8 months after it had received FDA approval. Clinical trial and safety data was extremely limited at the time. And scientific assessments are still coming in about the long-term and synergistic effects of this and other vaccines.
The Merck push is still ongoing in other states, as I’ve reported. California is pushing forward with legislation making it possible to dispense the shots through the state to children as young as 12 without the permission of their parents.
If Obama sponsored a Gardasil mandate law, took Merck money and had a staffer-turned-Merck lobbyist, it would be an issue.
Hillary Clinton lobbied for Gardasil while Merck sat on hubby’s Global Initiative board. Conservatives cared back then. Pay-for-play still matters, especially when our children are involved.
There IS a middle ground between “absolutist anti-vaccine hysteria” and mindless, unquestioning support of Nanny State.
I am not an Jenny McCarthy-esque loon for taking the time to assess the massive shot schedule & deciding what’s right for my kids and when.
It’s not “freaking out” to highlight parental sovereignty issues. And this is not merely a “social” issue instead of an economic issue. It’s both. The debate over Obamacare is in large part a debate over the limits of government in private health decisions. This is of a piece.
Former Hot Air alum and former Texas state GOP communications director Bryan Preston, now at Pajamas Media, notes that during the tenure of Sarah Palin (who rightly criticized the appearance of crony capitalism in the Perry/Gardasil debacle last night), Alaska took federal funds to expand access to Gardasil:
( Juneau, Alaska) ─ The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services announced today that an increase in federal funding will make it possible for all Alaska girls ages 9 through 18 to receive Gardasil ®, the vaccine to prevent cervical cancer, at no cost.
This isnt quite the same thing as mandating (and being overturned on, so it didnt actually happen) a vaccination, but taking federal funds for Gardasil doesnt quite square with Palins hot shots at Perry on Fox last night. I admire Sarah Palin quite a bit (and Bachmann too), but aligning herself with Bachmanns precious bodily fluids gambit is a huge mistake on her part. Both of them are flaming their own credibility over an issue that, in the grand view of things, ought not to matter much. It hasnt mattered much to some of the most conservative voters in America, over three gubernatorial elections running now. Both Palin and Bachmann are coming off as ill informed, unreasonable and desperate.
It “isn’t quite the same thing as mandating.”
Gee, no. Ya think?
It’s a freakingly obvious night and day difference — Perry’s MANDATE on families and the MANDATE on insurers going over the heads of the state legislature versus the Palin administration’s decision to accept federal subsidies to increase access to those who choose to take it. (Note: Gardasil is not and never has been mandated in the state of Alaska.)
Preston also objects to indirect costs imposed by the Palin administration’s program on taxpayers outside the state.
Newsflash: The Perry executive order would have ordered Texas health officials to use federal Medicaid funding to cover the vaccine for young women — a cost that would have been borne by millions of taxpayers outside Texas.
As for the gobsmackingly ridiculous claim that this revelation about Palin makes her guilty of the crony capitalism Perry is marinated in, another flashback:
Pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co., responding to pressure from parents, pro-family organizations, and medical groups, announced on February 20 that it was immediately suspending its lobbying campaign to persuade state legislatures to mandate that adolescent girls receive the company’s vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV)-related cervical cancer as a requirement for school attendance.
A February 2 executive order by Texas Governor Rick Perry that made Texas the first state to require that schoolgirls as young as 11 get vaccinated with a three-dose regimen of Merck’s Gardasil before entering sixth grade had provoked a storm of outrage from pro-family groups.
A January 31 AP report that tied Merck & Co. to Women in Government, an advocacy group made up of female state legislators around the country, added fuel to the fire by revealing a blatant conflict of interest. The report observed that a top official from Merck’s vaccine division sits on Women in Government’s business council, and members of Women in Government have introduced many of the bills around the country that would mandate compulsory Gardasil vaccinations. Merck had also admitted donating an undisclosed amount of money to lobbyists promoting such legislation.
A follow-up report by AP’s Liz Austin Peterson on February 21 noted that Governor Perry’s chief of staff, Deirdre Delisi, met with Perry’s budget director and three members of his office for an “HPV Vaccine for Children Briefing” on October 16, the same day that Merck’s political action committee donated $5,000 to Perry’s campaign.
A spokesman for the governor, Robert Black, described the timing of the meeting and the Merck donation as a coincidence, but Cathie Adams, president of the Texas Eagle Forum, remains skeptical. “We have too many coincidences,” said Adams. “I think that the voters of Texas would find that very hard to swallow.”
Now, read this from the National Institute for Money in State Politics:
Among gubernatorial candidates who received contributions from Merck, Perry was second only to former California Gov. Gray Davis, who received $28,000.
Since the 2000 election cycle, the drug company has contributed $2.46 million to state-level candidates and party committees, doling their money out almost equally to both parties.
Democratic committees received just over $1 million and Republicans $1.4 million. Individuals employed by Merck gave an additional $2.5 million to state-level politics. Merck has helped finance races in forty states since the 2000 election cycle, when the Institute began collecting contribution data in all 50 states. Merck has focused intently on its home base, New Jersey, as well as giving in Florida, California and Pennsylvania. Combined, these four states have received more than $1 million from Merck, or 44 percent of the companys total
…At $360 for the three-shot Gardisal regimen, Merck could generate billions in sales if it is successful in its efforts to persuade the states to require the use of the vaccine.
MERCK CONTRIBUTIONS TO STATE POLITICS, 2000-2006
* 2006 data collection is ongoing; totals may increase.
MERCK CONTRIBUTIONS BY STATE, 2000-2006*
New Jersey $317,600
New York $118,025
West Virginia $52,250
North Carolina $48,000
New Mexico $31,300
South Carolina $24,150
South Dakota $8,200
North Dakota $3,250
New Hampshire $800
Note: Alaska does not appear on this list. It was never a lobbying target for Merck. Nor did Palin have an ex-chief of staff lobbying for Merck or a staffer’s mother-in-law serving as a state director of an advocacy group bankrolled by Merck to push legislatures across the country to put forward bills mandating the Gardasil vaccine for preteen girls.
Moreover, Palin is on record in 2008 e-mails expressing her general opposition to certain vaccine mandates.
It’s a pathetic and ill-informed act of desperation to try and turn the crony capitalism charge on Palin, which is a telling measure of how effective her voice is on this topic — and why so many would rather silence her.
As a sidenote, Perry lowballed the amount of money he took from Merck. See here.
And a final point: A friend points out that Perry supporters sabotage their own defense of Perry. If Perry was simply “erring on the side of life” and would simply have pursued the policy of increasing access to Gardasil in a different way, then he most certainly would have no objection to what happened in Alaska — e.g., making the vaccine available to people who wanted it without mandating it by acccepting existing federal dollars.
Good article. Lets see what those excusing Perry for this have to say.
One thing you can say about Michelle is she is a bulldog and does her research.
Perry f’d up.
"When both the House and Senate repealed the law six weeks later, Perry did not as he now claims listen humbly or agree with their decision.-----
Human shield demagoguery. In response to the legislatures rebuke, the infuriated governor attacked those who supported repeal as shameful spreaders of misinformation who were putting womens lives at risk. Borrowing a tried-and-true Alinskyite page from the progressive left, Perry surrounded himself with female cervical cancer victims and deflected criticism of his imperial tactics with emotional anecdotes.
He then lionized himself and the minority of politicians who voted against repeal of his Gardasil order. They will never have to think twice about whether they did the right thing. No lost lives will occupy the confines of their conscience, sacrificed on the altar of political expediency. Perry, of course, has now put his own ghastly Gardasil order on that same altar but with no apology to all those he demonized and exploited along the way."
Rick gets funny when you start messin with his money.
I’d say Malkin really hates Perry. I’d also say this whole issue has really been overblown. Wasn’t there an “opt-out” on this vaccination deal?
Please see post #6
>>There are more important things to worry about that 100 times bigger than this innuendo crap. <<
You certainly have the right to delude yourself and live in denial, if it makes you feel better.
But facts are stubborn things.
“Id say Malkin really hates Perry”
Ah, the “hate” card. Can’t deal with facts, so pull out the “hate” card.
>>The facts as you perceive them. <<
No, facts are facts. But go ahead and try to deny them. Maybe they will go away.
Yes, but the process for executing the opt out requires approval by the state; and ONLY the original approval, issued by the state, is effective.
It's not a form one simply signs at the doctor's office, or at the school.
Hey Rush. That's your boy.
That what people claim, but it's not entirely true. Texas has an "opt out" system in general, but the EO to mandate Gardasil references it only in directing the health department to make the form avaialble via the Internet. There was no Gardasil-specific opt out clause.
Exactly. I have little respect for morons who are willingly blind, and actually hostile to the truth.
It’s stupidity like that that got us McCain.
Or is the issue the sending of money to a faceless evil corporation to provide an unnecessary and dangerous product to innocent children?
If it's the latter how is what Perry did any different than what Palin did? Alaska provided $$$ to Merck for them to make vaccinations available for every girl 9 through 18, a point about which the Palin administration boasted
Nobody is objecting to Perry being criticized for the EO. What some of us are concerned about is Palin squandering nearly all her reputation (and Bachmann basically losing every bit of respect many of us once held for her) by making unsupported innuendos that Perry is a vile criminal.
The smart thing for the Sarah defenders to do would be to back off and encourage their girl to apologize.
Or spell out the charges in detail.
If going to call someone a moron, at least have the balls to do it to his or her face.
As to those who wish to ignore or justify their specific candidates shortcomings, they do so at their own peril. It might work. Then again (in a General Election), it might not.
Since to err is human and some politicians are human, we would do well to choose politicians who are likely to err on the side of caution, more specifically, to err on the side of the Constitution and individual freedom and liberty.
The Gardasil issue tells me that the politician we're looking for is not Perry.
You said he was being transferred because he was in grave danger.
Jessep: That's correct-
Kaffee: You said danger, I said grave danger? You said "is there any other kind?"
Michelle Malkin has certainly done her homework here. And I think I largely agree with her position. I am not an “anti-vaccine loon”, and would get my child a shot where the risks of death from the disease, or an epidemic killing large numbers, was sufficiently high. But this list has absolutely exploded since I was a kid, and something does not pass the smell test. Like her I look at the list and decide which I feel as a parent are worth the risk. Chicken Pox and Mumps have never killed anyone.
Also very interesting that Merck suspended their lobbying campaign once Perry decided he had designs on the White House.
>>If going to call someone a moron, at least have the balls to do it to his or her face.<<
Here is my exact quote:
“Exactly. I have little respect for morons who are willingly blind, and actually hostile to the truth.
Its stupidity like that that got us McCain.”
You have put the shoe on and found it fits, I see.
Thank you for posting this. Mrs. Malkin has a sharp wit for cutting to the chase scene. This was very well done and quite informative.
I did not support McCain in the primary, I supported Fred Thompson. I did support McCain in the GE which I hope you did.
I think when the Perry population sees this clarification, some unusual neural transfer behind their glazed retinas turns it into a recipe for chicken pot pie.
“Vote Perry, he’ll give you chicken pot pie! It’s so good it gives 12 year old girls seizures!”
I just hate the hypocrisy.
>>A little hole-in-the-wall health foods store I know keeps a stack of them by the register. And if you call your school officials they will deny up-and-down that any such opt-out exists, until you throw one of these forms on their desk and they begin stammering. <<
Someone needs to do a sting video of exactly what you described. Then expose it for all the world to see.
Sorry but you are wrong. Simply making the funds available to get the vaccine if you choose to and mandating that a child get the vaccine are two different things. Perry could have done the exact same thing, he chose not.
My question is, if as Perry and his supporters claim, he had to have an opt out option, instead of an opt in option, in order to get Federal Funds, how did Alaska get the funds?
I also didn’t hear Gov. Palin imply that if you were against the requirement that you didn’t care if women got cervical cancer.
Also, if it’s such a super idea, why now is Perry apologizing for it?
Hope people research this for themselves, but here’s an article that lists some concerns about Gardasil...
Those with Perrywinkle Glazed Eye Syndrome that blocks out info critical to Perry may only see what looks like a Chinese takeout menu...
GARDASIL is the vaccine promoted as protection against various types of cervical cancer supposedly caused by the HPV virus, and obviously is intended for other purposes. Even with the number of deaths and injury from the vaccine the ads ran non-stop on TV while state and federal governments tried to find ever newer and more invasive ways of making mandatory vaccination a reality. They got their wish; Obamacare calls for mandatory vaccination and proof of updates to vaccinations in order to get any healthcare.
Neither, Gardasil® nor any of the individual active ingredients have been previously approved for commercial marketing or use under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, the Public Health Service Act, or the Virus-Serum-Toxin Act, according to their application for patent.
Gardasil! It isnt just for the girls!
In 2010 Merck was still waiting for the blessings of FDA to make mandatory their Gardasil vaccine for boys. As recently as November 2010, FDA was thinking of changing the terminology for male Gardasil from Mandatory to Recommended; after all, were dealing with the family jewels here and these are far more important than a few dead ovaries. But approval did come after the male version of Gardasil was tested on 602 young men from the ages of 9 to 26. (I cant help but wonder how many of these young men knew they were being tested with this deadly vaccine).
Please note in this next article that Gardasil has been expanded to include far more than cervical cancer and includes the observation that HPV is THOUGHT to be the cause not, is the cause or, we know its the cause, or we can prove conclusively, or there is substantial evidence, they just think it could be. This is a broad and vague claim and totally without any conclusive supporting evidence.
Med Page Today:
WASHINGTON An FDA advisory panel has expressed its support for expanding the indication on the quadrivalent human papillomavirus recombinant vaccine Gardasil to prevent anal intraepithelial neoplasia and anal cancer in males and females ages 9 through 26.
Gardasil was approved in 2006 to prevent genital warts and cervical, vulvar, and vaginal cancer in females ages 9 to 26; the vaccines indication was expanded in 2009 to include prevention of genital warts in males of that age range.
FDAs Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee agreed that the three-dose vaccine should also be used to prevent anal intraepithelial neoplasia and anal cancer caused by HPV strains 6, 11, 16, and 18. HPV is thought to be the cause of 90% of anal cancers.
In 2008 Merck planned the expansion of Gardasil injections targeting young boys and says the most important new opportunity for the vaccine will be for its use in males. (Merck claims: The vaccine could help prevent males from contracting Human Papilloma virus and spreading it to females through sexual contact.) Merck was on track to seek approval for use in males by the end of 2008 and of course now they have approval. And how many of the deaths and other injuries to young boys and men will go under-reported while MERCK profits?
Gardasil was never tested for cancer causing agents or proof of cancer prevention. It still has not been tested or proven to prevent cervical cancer or any of the other afflictions it claims to prevent. They just think it might.
In the interim, Mercks sales of Gardasil have plummeted beginning back in 2007. Merck claims the reason was that women and girls forgot to go back for the second and third shots.
We have put in place substantial reminder programs that allow them to improve the ability to remember to go back to the second and third dose. So, were doing it by mail, were doing it by e-mail, were doing it by text messages, and a variety of different technologies to be able to make sure [that] they get to their second, and third doses.
Only they didnt come back. Many who received the first shots suffered from partial paralysis, seizures, fevers, muscle spasms and a host of other symptoms. Although every effort was made by Merck and the CDC to squash or minimalize any adverse event reporting, the stories leaked out and the news wasnt good. The CDC as of 2010 had posted these responses to Gardasil among hundreds of adverse events:
Pt had unwitnessed seizure on 5/21/09. H/O probable seizure activity in the past 6 wks. After seizure, pt has had complaint of headache, dizziness, weakness, balance difficulty. 7/6/09 MR received for DOS 5/21-24/2009 with D/C DX: Seizure. Headache. Pt presented to ER after episode of unresponsiveness with limb flexion, staring, and fall. Disoriented with slurred speech, inappropriate affect, weakness, tiredness and severe H/A after. Recent episodes of involuntary fluttering of R hand. Started on Depakote.
(Depakote is a psychotropic drug used for bi-polar disorder)
Body aches, fatigue, blisters inside mouth, swollen glands, sores on lips and gums, swollen lips were also reported in many cases.
The VAER report (Vaccine Adverse Event Report) is populated with reports of seizures, fainting, involuntary flailing of limbs, rashes, fevers, paralysis, vomiting, muscle contractions, ringing in the ears, blurred vision, and many other symptoms which appeared immediately after the first injection of Gardasil. It will be years before we know the long term and most likely devastating effects of this killer vaccine.
Gardasil contains extremely high levels of aluminum and polysorbate 80, a known cause of sterility in lab tests on mice, and also known to cause sterility in humans. High levels of other neurotoxic chemicals and the presence of thimerisol, a derivitive of mercury is said to be present although MERCK continues to deny that allegation.
Thanks to the Vaccine Liability Fund, funded in whole by US taxpayers, MERCK will never be held responsible or liable for the deaths and injuries they have caused and instead will simply add up the billions in profits while taxpayers foot the bill for the damages.
Cynthia Janek wrote an article in 2006 for the New American called FDA and HPV .when did they know? .(follow up). Janeks research revealed:
the FDA knew back in 2003 that a HPV is not the actual cause of cervical cancer. The actual cause is a persistent HPV infection that may act as a tumor promoter in cancer induction.
What we have here is proof that there is scientific evidence that has been published in the past 15 years that states that HPV infection does not bear a direct relationship to the forming of cervical cancer. It also tells us that HPV, if allowed to will be taken care of by our own bodys natural processes. . .most infections are short-lived and not associated with cervical cancer. With this being said, why do we need Gardasil when our own body is more than capable of eradicating HPV?
What we need is a government policy to assist women with the cost of getting follow-up tests when persistent HPV infection is present. This would make more sense and our government would save so much money on these types of programs instead of $360 each for the Gardasil vaccination. MERCK applied to the FDA for approval of the vaccine to be used on older women.
As MERCK can produce not one independent test trial that proves the link between HPV and cervical cancer, and has even less evidence that Gardasil in fact will prevent any form of cervical cancer, one might think the FDA would have no hesitation in denying access to the market for this lethal vaccine. Oh! We could only dream! The FDA, noted for its funding by the same companies who seek their approval, was dragging its feet, but gave its approval of the extended vaccine in 2010.
As the FDA states with regards to many pharmaceuticals, death is an acceptable side affect. Acceptable to whom? MERCK? Now that the male version of the vaccine is on the market, I believe all males at MERCK and followed by everyone at the FDA should receive the initial doses. We should vaccinate all their children too .we dont need successive generations of genocidal monsters.
The timeline has Merck shifting gears on that front, years ago.
Merck Suspends Lobbying for Vaccine - February 21, 2007
The only thing he is apologizing for, as far as I know, is enacting the requirement via EO. Again, AFAIK, he still believes the HPV vaccine should be mandatory, by government action.
2007 is also when they first began getting reports that Gardasil had an unexpectedly high incidence of complications. Did Perry get the memo?
Chicken Pox can most certainly be fatal if contracted later in life. Far from never having killed anyone - Chicken Pox can indeed kill.
I understand that the manufacturer of the Vaccine has stopped distributing. I am wondering if this entire system is corrupted, and it is just the tip of the Iceberg.
I am starting to get very pissed about this mess that Perry had caused,and still stands up and acts like it was not pay to play.
No. Perry didn't rescind the EO until RP74 issued on February 17, 2011.
However, the Texas House got some memo in 2007 (likely pissed off constituents) - the Texas House passed HB 1098 on March 14, 2007, overturning the EO by a vote of 119-21. The Texas Senate followed suit the following month by a vote of 30-1.
“Excuses”? I don’t need to give you “excuses” about anything. You might want to make some “excuses” for your own obnoxiousness.
Before widespread vaccination, around 100 children a year died from chicken pox in the USA.
Jerry McGuire: ‘How do I spin this?’
Jerry’s Fiance: ‘Oh honey..It’s spun.’
A true conservative would have made it “Opt-IN” instead of forcing the mandate on parents UNLESS they opted out.
Perry got it wrong.
Perry got it backwards.
Perry - just another big govt Amnesty lovin’ RINO/elitist.
Yeah. Ain't that somethin.
I find it hilarious that some are now saying Malkin has no credibility. HAHAHAHHAAHAHA! She has more than Perry! And is a rock-solid, staunch conservative to boot.