Vaccines and the Responsibility To Not Put Others at Risk

Ronald Bailey responds to Dr. Jeffrey Singer’s “Vaccination and Free Choice”

This column is part of a debate over the proper view of vaccination in a free society. It began with a column by Reason's science correspondent, Ron Bailey, that argued that "people who refuse vaccination are asserting that they have a right to 'swing' their microbes at other people." Dr. Jeffrey Singer responded, writing, "To live in a free society, one must be willing to tolerate people who make bad decisions and bad choices." Bailey now continues the conversation.

I would like to thank Dr. Singer for a thoughtful response to my article. Before we get into the arguments for taking responsibility for your own microbes, let’s review where Dr. Singer and I agree. First, we agree that vaccines are a safe and effective way to prevent and protect against communicable diseases. We agree that arguments to the contrary—e.g., assertions that vaccines cause autism and that thimerosal preservative is dangerous—are largely pseudoscientific nonsense. We agree that people who are known to be at a heightened risk from vaccines, such as people with impaired immune systems, should surely not be vaccinated. Interestingly, it is precisely immune-impaired people who would most benefit from the positive externality of widespread vaccination of other people. More on that topic below.

And I certainly agree with Dr. Singer when he states, “To live in a free society, one must be willing to tolerate people who make bad decisions and bad choices, as long as they don’t directly infringe on the rights of others.” But that is precisely what is at issue.

As Dr. Singer properly observes, one of the cornerstones of libertarian philosophy is the non-aggression principle. There is no canonical version, but at its heart is the idea that people are not permitted to initiate force against others except to defend themselves. That perspective is pretty well summarized by an Oliver Wendell Holmes quote I cited in my original article: “The right to swing my fist ends where the other man's nose begins." Just as an individual is responsible for where his fist is located vis a vis another’s face, so too is he responsible for his microbes with regard another’s health.

Some people object that aggression can only occur when someone intends to hit someone else; microbes just happen. Well, in medieval times, when diseases were blamed on demons and miasmas, people could not be expected to be responsible for their microbes. In the post-Pasteur era, people no longer have the excuse of ignorance. Being intentionally unvaccinated against highly contagious diseases is, to carry Holmes’ analogy a bit further, like walking down a street randomly swinging your fists without warning. You may not hit an innocent bystander, but you’ve substantially increased the chances that you will.

One might usefully analogize the risk of disease to a crapshoot. A person’s chance of being infected is, as Dr. Singer acknowledges, a matter of luck. But is it really OK for the unvaccinated to load the dice to increase the odds against other people? If so, by how much?

This raises the issue of utilitarianism. Some commenters on my original article dismissed the case of a vaccinated medical technician being hospitalized for measles caught from an intentionally unvaccinated kid, arguing that the possibility was too minor to worry about. Similarly, another observed that only 18 infants died from whooping cough out millions of babies last year. Never mind in each outbreak of whooping cough, about half of infected infants end up hospitalized. What could be more utilitarian than making those sorts of calculations? Those harmed by the irresponsibility of the unvaccinated in those cases are not being accorded the inherent equal dignity and rights that libertarians believe every individual possesses. The autonomy of the unvaccinated somehow trumps the autonomy of those they put at risk.

As central to libertarian thinking as the non-aggression principle is, there are other tenets that also inform a well-considered libertarian philosophy. One such is the harm principle, as outlined by John Stuart Mill in On Liberty. Mill argued that “the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others.” In his response, Dr. Singer limits the protection of others from infectious disease to those cases in which a known individual is currently spreading disease. In such a situation, Singer that a strong case can be made for legally detaining and isolating people in quarantine. I agree. But is the libertarian case for protecting people from the risk of infectious disease limited solely to quarantining those who are currently infected?

In his response, Dr. Singer uses the plot of the science-fiction movie, Minority Report, to compare the intentionally unvaccinated to those wrongfully convicted for crimes on the basis of allegedly infallible precognition. Dr. Singer is quite right when he states, “There is no way to determine with certainty that the [intentionally unvaccinated] person will ever be responsible for disease transmission.” Since that is so, he suggests, people like me must be similarly endorsing a kind of “infallible precognition” with regard to which of the unvaccinated will cause disease in innocent bystanders. Not at all.

Dr. Singer correctly notes that vaccination fails to immunize some people; that some unvaccinated never come down with vaccine-preventable diseases; and that others are simply lucky enough never to be exposed. All true, but inapt. In Minority Report, the people convicted on the basis of precog “evidence” never knew or thought that they were a danger to others. No precognition is required to know that an individual’s refusal to be vaccinated against highly contagious airborne illnesses puts others at risk of death, debilitation, hospitalization, and plain old misery.

Dr. Singer notes that mothers who smoke and drink alcohol increase the risk of harms to their fetuses. Quite true, but those actions are freely chosen and they do not put other people, including other women’s fetuses, at risk of disease. Exposure to rubella does. In fact, researchers have reported that 100 percent of children whose mothers were infected with rubella before 11 weeks of gestation and 35 percent infected before 14 weeks were born with severe birth defects. As late as 1965, more than 2,000 kids were born with defects resulting from rubella infections. Now that an effective vaccine against German measles is available, who is responsible for those illnesses and defects? Surely not the mothers or their fetuses.

Dr. Singer clearly accepts the epidemiological reality of the positive externality of herd immunity. With regard to free riding on positive externalities, he further argues, “So long as the person being free-ridden is getting a desired value for an acceptable price, and is not being harmed by the freeriding, it really shouldn’t matter to that person.” If those of us who are successfully vaccinated obtain the benefits we are seeking, why should it matter to us that some refuse those benefits?

Here’s why. Herd immunity is a positive externality that the vaccinated confer upon those who are too young to be vaccinated, who experience immunization failure, or who are immunocompromised. Immunocompromised people include people who have organ transplants, people who take certain drugs to ameliorate autoimmune diseases, medically fragile children, the elderly with senescent immune systems, and those infected with HIV. In America today, it is estimated that about 10 million people are immunocompromised. It is likely that the people responsible for those too young to be vaccinated and those who are immunocompromised would choose to take advantage of the protection offered by vaccination if they could, but they can’t.

On the other hand, the intentionally unvaccinated are the only group that deliberately free-rides on the positive externality of herd immunity that the rest of us confer on them. And in exchange for this benefit, the unvaccinated inflict the negative externality of being possible vectors of disease, threatening millions who must depend through no fault of their own upon herd immunity. Vaccines are like fences. Fences keep your neighbor's livestock out of your pastures and yours out of his. Similarly, vaccines keep your neighbor's microbes out of your body and yours out of his.

Dr. Singer also recognizes that free riding by the intentionally unvaccinated could get out of hand when he asks, “How many free riders should be allowed?” One useful way to think about this question is to consider the population thresholds at which herd immunity breaks down. For most of the highly contagious airborne diseases for which vaccines are available those thresholds hover around having about 90 percent of people living in a community be vaccinated. Unfortunately, due to anti-vaccination propaganda those thresholds have been breached in numerous communities across the country. Outbreaks have resulted.

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  • Paul.||

    Oh shit, here we go.

    Abandon thread!

  • ||

    Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!

  • Brandybuck||

    It's my Rothbard-given natural and unalienable right to force the public schools to accept my unvaccinated child into their classrooms! Because of autism! Or whatever!

  • VangelV||

    If the public schools agree not to make me pay for them through the tax system I have no problem finding a school that will take my kids. And since my unvaccinated kids are not a risk to vaccinated kids what exactly is the problem?

  • Locke||

    This is handled in the article:

    Here’s why. Herd immunity is a positive externality that the vaccinated confer upon those who are too young to be vaccinated, who experience immunization failure, or who are immunocompromised. Immunocompromised people include people who have organ transplants, people who take certain drugs to ameliorate autoimmune diseases, medically fragile children, the elderly with senescent immune systems, and those infected with HIV. In America today, it is estimated that about 10 million people are immunocompromised.
  • ||

    Before we get into the arguments for taking responsibility for your own microbes

    It seems to me that this is one of the fundamental things that is being disagreed with. Do you really own the microbes in your body, particularly the invasive ones? I don't feel that I do.

  • some guy||

    So let's move away from microbes then. Let's say a grizzly bear takes up residence on your property without your consent and perhaps without even your knowledge. Do you own the bear? If he leaves your property and kills your neighbor are you responsible? Are you required to take some minimum action to mitigate bear-related damage to your neighbors either before or after you find out about him? I have a hard time arguing that we should treat a wild microbe different than a wild mammal. The only real difference is that it's much easier to get a vaccination than it is to erect a grizzly-proof fence around your land.

  • ||

    This is pretty much the way I see it too.

  • robc||

    As horrible reason analogies go, I like that one.

    I once made this horrible analogy on here (in the form of hypothetical [and rhetorical] question): Are bees just miniature cattle?

  • SugarFree||

    Do hallucinogenic mushrooms grow in bee shit?

  • Cliché Bandit||

    Honey is naturally antiseptic/antimicrobial so no...vary few things grow in bee shit.

    /let me slide on honey being bee shit ok...it is for effect.

  • SugarFree||

    My bee knowledge was weak. I thought honey was bee poop. So I googled "Do bees poop?" And, yes... they do poop compacted and partially digested pollen.

    My search history is hella weird.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    But we never answered the salient question...do magic shrooms grow in bee shit?

  • Mickey Rat||

    Honey is more bee vomit than poop.

  • Marshall Gill||

    Exactly. I even saw a show about how if bees don't get outside their hive to poo, they will get diseased and die.

    Honey is made, as Mickey Rat says above, from regurgitated pollen.

    I am gonna say that, yes, magic shrooms grow on bee shit. The only problem is that they are so tiny you have to collect several thousand shrooms for a single trip.

  • ||

    Not pollen! Nectar!

  • some guy||

    You're right, that was terrible. It's more like a grizzly moves onto your land and has cubs. Then the cubs grow up and move on to kill your neighbor. Sorry about that.

  • Bobarian||

    Your unvaccinated child is like having a grizzly bear farm. When grizzlies from your farm kill your neighbor, are you responsible?

  • ||

    If this were the case, that would mean I invited or actionably placed the grizzly bears on my property. Not so with microbes.

  • Locke||

    You might as well be by not vaccinating your kids. This would be the same as hanging steaks out, with a sign that says "Grizzlies welcome here!" and then say you never wanted the grizzlies in the first place.

  • R C Dean||

    I don't.

    The analogy misses the key point of the discussion, namely, did you fail to take a reasonable action that foreseeably resulted in someone else being harmed.

    I'm not sure what the reasonable action is to keep a grizzly bear from moving in, and I'm not sure that its foreseeable that the bear would attack your neighbor.

    If getting vaccinated is a reasonable action, and failure to do so causes someone else to get sick because you are a carrier due to your lack of vaccination, that sounds actionable to me.

  • Evangelical||

    The law already identifies Bees as a feral animal therefore as long as you take reasonable precautions for safety you cant be held liable for if the bees attacked someone, unlike say a dog which you're pretty much liable for no matter what.

  • ||

    You don't even have to move away from microbes, just the one or two specific instances of vaccines that Bailey has in mind. Let's say there is an infectious disease that is largely spread by promiscuous sexual behavior and/or IV drug (ab)use. Are you enhancing or inhibiting people's freedom by compelling them not to partake in these behaviors?

    Also, one thing Mr. Bailey has largely avoided. Just as there are harmful infectious microbes, there are beneficial ones. Are the spreaders of beneficial microbes to expect royalties from those blessed by their presence?

  • John Thacker||

    Well sure, if you want to distinguish between diseases spread by intimate contact, that's fine. But if it's a disease spread by breathing the same air, it seems a far worse imposition to have to demand that people not breath the same air as me.

  • ||

    Well sure, if you want to distinguish between diseases spread by intimate contact, that's fine.

    So a law forbidding any sexual contact other than strict serial monogamy with mandated HIV testing between partners is a rather libertarian idea to you?

    There are lots of ways to make the herd immune to lots of things; many of them make it extremely undesirable to be part of the herd.

  • Marshall Gill||

    What is the difference between passing on a disease because you were not vaccinated and passing on a disease because your vaccine failed? Intentions?

  • ||

    What is the difference between passing on a disease because you were not successfully vaccinated and passing on a disease because you were?

  • VangelV||

    Mr Bailey has a much bigger problem. If you are vaccinated you are not harmed by microbes that may wind up infecting me so there is no harm done. And since some of us believe that we should be responsible for our own actions he cannot use the 'we must pay for your health' argument.

    I have not found Mr. Bailey very persuasive over the years. For a science reporter he got the global warm alarmism all wrong and ignored most of the evidence that falsified the hypothesis. I used to think that was the case because he may have been ignorant of the facts. It seems that the true cause may be that Mr. Bailey is simply not very good at reasoning properly.

  • mikheil||

    Id agree with this, but what about transference of hiv, hep c, etc when prior knowledge of infection is known?

  • ||

    The extent of 'prior' and 'knowledge' are used on a case by case basis to evaluate guilt. Just as if you accidentally brought hazardous or radioactive material to the local bar after work.

    The only thing Bailey created anew is the idea that all of us are responsible for herd immunity, possibly by law; and considering it's a fundamentally communist argument, it's not that new. It's only new in the context of a 'intelligent' reply to the stupidity of Jenny McCarthy and kin.

  • DenverJay||

    Forget about bears...what about the lady who used to live across the street from me when I lived in a Mobile home in Lakewood. She would feed the stray cats, who would then find holes in her trailer's skirting, and then set up shop under her house, breeding like...well, like stray cats with an easy source of food and shelter.
    These cats were a serious nuisance, and public health threat, to the entire neighborhood -not to mention the local bird population. I would say that her actions should be illegal (and probably were). Shouldn't diseases be considered even less welcome than hordes (seriously, hordes, no exaggeration) of feral cats?

  • VangelV||

    I think that you may be barking up the wrong trees. Whether they are my microbes or not they are not a danger to those that chose to be vaccinated so what exactly is the problem?

  • SugarFree||

    aborting NFL pizzas

  • ||

    gay deep-dish foreskin pizza

  • ||

    That's Provincetown-style pizza.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Of course, that place is so cosmo.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    awesome

  • DJF||

    “”””Unfortunately, due to anti-vaccination propaganda those thresholds have been breached in numerous communities across the country””’

    I bet that those thresholds have been breeched more by immigration policies supported by Ron Bailey then by anti-vaccination propaganda. Does Ron Bailey now support greatly tightening immigration in order to ‘protect the herd”

  • Paul.||

    Those thresholds haven't been breached by immigration policy on Vashon Island. Just anti-vaccine hippies that regularly see Naturopaths until they really get sick, then they come crawling to the one real clinic on the island.

  • NoVAHockey||

    anecdote not data, but when i volunteer at vaccine clinics, its immigrants lined up out the door. people who have witnessed what these diseases can do.

  • ||

    Impressive. In a completely unrelated thread about vaccines, obsessive immigration obsesser obsesses about immigration. Nice obsession.

  • Paul.||

    The funny thing is, even if he were correct, that all our disease problems were being caused by dirty ferriners, wouldn't it make sense to, you know, protect yourself and your kids? No, just keep out the dirty ferriners. More government will seal the borders I guess.

  • DJF||

    More government will give you mandated vaccines.

  • ||

    THEY TOOK UR MEASLES!!! BRING IN THE STATE!!!

  • DJF||

    How is it unrelated, many diseases have been wiped out in the USA yet somehow they are now reappearing. Is it magic? Or is it people with the disease are coming to the US?

  • Paul.||

    LONG PRAIRIE, Minnesota — Polio was pronounced dead in the Western Hemisphere years ago, after one of the most successful public health campaigns in history. But now it is stealing through a tiny Amish community in central Minnesota, spreading from an 8-month-old girl to four children on two neighboring farms.

    Those damned Amish, mixing with all those immigrants again.

  • DJF||

    According to this the virus might be from someone who got the vaccine and maybe from a foreign country which still uses that type of vaccine.

    http://www.virology.ws/2009/04.....minnesota/

  • wareagle||

    so the return of this previously-eradicated disease is a good thing?

  • ||

    Paul didn't say anything of the kind, he just pointed out that the Amish are not immigrants yet they've proven to be a vector.

  • wareagle||

    and there might be some correlation between the absence of vaccines and a re-emergence of the disease. Malaria was eradicated at one point, too, and then DDT was banned. That's worked out real well for those who have seen that disease come back.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Amish or Mennonite? If they were lazy and using Amish as a catch-all for Mennonite there might be some truth to that considering the fact that there are large Mennonite communities in several South American countries.

  • John Thacker||

    A lot of it includes Americans who travel to foreign countries and them come back. So it's not just about not letting foreigners come in, but not letting Americans leave, if you want to go that route.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    You think DJF, the God-fearin' Yokeltarian that he is, ever plans on leaving this New Zion, this New Jerusalem upon a Hill? Fuck, leaving his county is unthinkable to him. Who'd take care of Ma and Pa?

  • Neoliberal Kochtopus||

    That's a pretty good one, and +1 on the use of Yokeltarian.

  • ||

    It's worth noting that the function of a huge amount of human culture is derived from brain processes designed to protect the herd from microbes.

    The disgust mechanism - based in the human insula - goes all the way back to lizard brains, and yet is tied into everything from religious customs about burial of the dead to the types of mates people find attractive.

    We're all biologically programmed to protect our herd from foreign microbes by excluding foreigners, or members of others castes or classes or social groups.

    'Othering' people is about disease, fundamentally.

  • Paul.||

    I thought it was about keeping all the hot white wimmen to ourselves. Huh, learn somethin' new everday!

  • DenverJay||

    Yeah, except I'm greedy. I also want all the brown and black women, too. Capt Kirk can keep that green-skinned one. (guess I'm a bigot...)

  • ||

    Side note:

    I wouldn't be surprised if immunity tended to be passed on genetically or through family groups via breast-feeding and close contact.

    Thus living exclusively with closely related family would indeed help reinforce herd immunity. This would create a selective force in favor of xenophobia and racism. Don't touch the dirty foreigners, because IN FACT not only might they be carrying diseases, but they might not be immune to the same ones as the rest of your tribe. Eventually, a sufficient level of tribal mixing would have weakened herd immunity leading to higher levels of disease in ethnically mixed groups.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Thus living exclusively with closely related family would indeed help reinforce herd immunity. This would create a selective force in favor of xenophobia and racism. Don't touch the dirty foreigners, because IN FACT not only might they be carrying diseases, but they might not be immune to the same ones as the rest of your tribe. Eventually, a sufficient level of tribal mixing would have weakened herd immunity leading to higher levels of disease in ethnically mixed groups.

    That could be true; however, there is an equally strong evolutionary pressure to exogamy due to the deleterious effects of inbreeding.

    As usual, much of evolutionary [insert social sciences discipline here] amounts to nothing more than Kipling's Just-So stories with charts and graphs.

  • Evangelical||

    Evolution is a bunch of crap. The idea evolution created the complex vascular system complete with lymph, arterioles and veinules, and a complex heart...is utterly ridiculous.

  • Marshall Gill||

    The idea that a Sky Father created the Universe and then showed himself to a tiny group of racist ancients, is so believable, on the other hand.

  • DenverJay||

    Or interbreeding could introduce the other group's immunities into your group, making it even stronger.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    Othering' people is about disease, fundamentally

    Would that be a microbeaggression?

  • Edwin||

    Really? That's not what I remember from pysch class. What I remember is that disgust is a particular human emotion, and a recently evolved one at that.
    Which explains why animals can eat shit and doo the other gross shit they do whereas we can't

    I've ever seen an animal react in disgust. Am I missing something here?

  • Blacksmithking||

    Yes. My cat shows disgust if she smells something citris.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Do you realize how many vaccinations a (legal) immigrant has to have before he or she can enter the United States? My wife's arm was made into a pincushion before she could come here.

  • Cliché Bandit||

    THIS is true. I married a furrner and I gotta tell ya, I would never go through what she went through. Not just the numerous unnamed vaccines but a full biometric tracking panel.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Oh, and isn't the checking off the box labeled "I have never been an active member of the Communist Party" on the visa application just peachy?

  • Cliché Bandit||

    For a Russian older than 22 that answer is always yes.

  • Cdr Lytton||

    Sort of like inprocessing for basic training.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Men who poke holes in their condoms are committing domestic violence

    Shane Trawick argues in the California Law Review that it's probably not a great idea to lump condom-hole-punchers in with rapists. Instead, Trawick makes the case that states should pass laws explicitly banning birth control sabotage as a separate crime with its own penalties. He suggests a model law that reads in part that "a person is guilty of the crime of reproductive coercion" if he/she "knowingly or recklessly tampers with a chemical or barrier contraceptive device, against his or her sexual partner’s will, with the specific intent of inducing pregnancy." He also suggests charging men who claim they will pull out but then don't.

    Obviously, in many cases, it would be hard to prove that someone knowingly sabotaged your birth control. But in cases in which the saboteur implicates himself or there's physical evidence of the sabotage, making reproductive coercion a crime in and of itself could be quite valuable. In domestic violence cases, it's one more charge that could be levied against an abuser, which would increase the criminal penalties an abuser faces. Also, as Trawick argues, making it a crime would help raise awareness in the public that reproductive coercion exists and that it's a form of domestic violence.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    He also suggests charging men who claim they will pull out but then don't.

    While you're at it, why don't you file charges against the 99.9% of politicians who break campaign promises and women who stop giving BJs after the wedding?

  • WTF||

    Is there a rash of men trying to trick women into getting pregnant that I haven't heard of? It seems pretty unlikely.

  • Jesus H. Christ||

    Nothing seems to mention punishing women who go off the pill and fail to mention it to their partner(s), and who then end up pregnant.

  • ||

    My guess with this guy is projection. I'd bet a lot of money that he's done this himself, regrets it, and sees it in everyone.

  • albo||

    Yeah, who would do this? I'm thinking that the kind of guy who would do that is the kind of dirtbag who probably won't be there for most of that kid's life anyway. So why do it?

  • SugarFree||

    It's some sort of urban myth feminists have latched onto. Marcotte has written about it a few times. It's sort of like worrying about being stabbed when someone is hitting you in the face every few minutes with a baseball bat.

  • John||

    It goes back to the prime directive of all feminist writers that everything they write must be in direct opposition to the truth. The truth is that women have for the entire history of mankind gotten pregnant in order to force a man to take care of them. This practice has become incredibly lucrative if you are willing to seduce the right professional athlete.

    There simply are no cases of the opposite occurring. Thus, feminist writers must pretend the problem is men forcing women to get pregnant.

  • Zeb||

    I bet there are some cases of men doing it. People do weird shit.

  • ||

    Oh, I'm sure there are. I had a high school friend who got a girl pregnant in college on their first serious date. He didn't do anything shady like poking holes in condoms, but he was thrilled, because he had a shitty family and wanted one of his own because he thought that when he had one of his own, it would be way better than his shitty one.

    Gross, but it happens. As you say, people do weird shit.

  • ||

    There was a super long story about it in the NYT mag a few months back wasn't there? With like a couple of examples maybe. It was stupid. Anyway it should sure as shit be a crime, but then I'm not sure why if you couldn't prove it reasonably it wouldn't already be some kind of assault or sexual assault charge?

  • SugarFree||

    And the impossibility of proving "not pulling out" considering there are at least a million backseat impregnations due to pre-ejaculate.

  • John||

    But Nikki there is more to the world than the criminal courts. If it is a crime, it could be a civil action. It could also be another reason for colleges to expel male students after some kangaroo court proceeding. And even if they can't prove it in court, that doesn't stop some enterprising feminist DA from bring the charge and doing what she can to ruin men' lives.

  • ||

    Yeah, there's more to the world than criminal courts, but as far as I'm concerned, if I agreed to have sex with you with a condom, and you poked holes in it, you fucking raped me. Sorry, but that shit is a crime.

  • ||

    Raped? Isn't that a little extreme? You agreed to the sex under false pretenses (that there would not be any sperm getting into your vagina), but...well, I guess I can see your point since it can end up in pregnancy, which is not what you agreed to.

    That's a tough one.

  • wareagle||

    so Nikki, if you agree to have sex with me and claim to be on the pill but you're not, then you turn up pregnant, what is my argument going to be?

  • JWatts||

    "so Nikki, if you agree to have sex with me and claim to be on the pill but you're not, then you turn up pregnant, what is my argument going to be?"

    Your argument is irrelevant. STFU and pay the child support you frakkin dead beat! /Judge

  • John||

    So if you poke a hole in it Niki so you can get pregnant to take me for child support are you raping me?

    I can see your point. But no way would it ever be equally enforced. It would just be another excuse to fuck men. Sorry Niki but your gender isn't trustworthy enough to have such a law.

  • OneOut||

    Do you regularly allow guys to fuck you with pre-opened condoms they pulled out of their pockets ?

    Do you not watch them open it ?

    Why don't you take responsibility and provide your own, and put it on yourself ?

  • BakedPenguin||

    I actually did know one woman who this happened to. She wound up keeping the kid, and got married to different guy. She referred to hole poker as the "sperm donor".

  • wareagle||

    Is there a rash of men trying to trick women into getting pregnant that I haven't heard of?

    a better case could be made if you switch the genders.

  • Floridian||

    What about women who forget to take their pill or stop without telling their partner? I'm sure they will be charged with domestic violence and the man won't have to pay child support.

  • John||

    But remember, it is the thin pink line of feminists who are keeping the government out of your bedroom.

  • Paul.||

    And women who say, "Don't worry baby, I'm taking birth control" are committing theft?

  • R C Dean||

    Fraud, anyway.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    As I've said before, my accessory spleen makes me immune to most diseases. (citation: science) And my primary brain makes me immune to further discussions on this topic.

  • albo||

    Sometimes political philosophy is stumped by nature. Men-and-women-are-equal feminists sometimes get stymied by biology. The basic human motivations resulting from evolution worked against creating the New Man of communism. And the eternal threat of microbes and the ability for all to enjoy time in the agora free from threats poses a real question for libertarianism.

    I'm a bit of a Heinlein libertarian: people who refuse to vaccinate for no good reason are, by their stupidity, a threat to me, and I should be able to shoot them.

  • ||

    Everyone is a potential threat to you, if they choose to become so. Should you be able to shoot everyone?

    This absurd focus on being able to force people to get vaccinations is statist to the core. I am totally for vaccination. I don't believe it harms people in any way. I have had vaccinations. I would give any children I ever had (please god no) vaccinations. Yet at the same time, no one has the right to force anyone to get a vaccination. People who don't get vaccinated are not guaranteed to get a disease, so you have absolutely no right whatsoever to try and force them. Because if you do, you may be forcing someone who would never have gotten sick to do something. You are using force to violate their bodies.

    Sorry, that's wrong. And anyone who promotes forced vaccination is explicitly not someone who follows the NAP. In fact, you're a slaver. Sorry, but it's true.

  • albo||

    Fine, people can choose not to get vaccinated, and we shouldn't force them to. But then they should stay away from the rest of us. They can set up their own vaccine-free schools.

  • ||

    Well, you can choose to avoid them, but you can't force them into camps or separate schools (of course, you can set up your own and not allow non-vaccinated people in).

  • R C Dean||

    Well, you can choose to avoid them,

    Easily done, since they have to wear those yellow bio-hazard badges whenever they go out in public.

  • John||

    Yet at the same time, no one has the right to force anyone to get a vaccination.

    Okay. But understand that you do not become immune the moment you get a vaccination. It takes a couple of weeks to build up the immunity. So if I can't force you to get a vaccination, can I sue you for damages if you get sick and infect me before my immunity builds?

    I would imagine a few large civil damage awards would take a lot of the fun away out of belonging to the "but it makes my kid retarded" crowd.

    I feel terrible for the kids that are going to needlessly die. But I have no doubt this foolishness will pass. Once these idiots start seeing their kids' die, the need for mandatory vaccination will end very quickly.

  • albo||

    Once these idiots start seeing their kids' die, the need for mandatory vaccination will end very quickly

    We would hope. But it seems that a lot of this anti-vax stuff comes from ostensibly well-educated people, at least in the US. If after all the reports and studies and evidence they haven't learned yet, how many bloody onesies will it take for them to learn?

  • ||

    If you can possibly prove that a particular person made you sick, which you can't, maybe you could sue them, but since you can't prove it, no.

    As you allude to in your later paragraph, this is a self-correcting problem. The only reason dopes like Jenny McCarthy can run around being an idiot is because most of the population has been vaccinated and we're mostly safe. Have some serious outbreaks that kill a bunch of kids and there will be no leisure to be a moron about this. People who don't get their kids vaccinated will have a bunch of them die. That tends to cure really bad stupidity pretty fast.

  • John||

    If you can possibly prove that a particular person made you sick, which you can't,

  • John||

    Fuck you squirrels. You ate my comment

    That is not true. Doctors trace the source of outbreaks of disease all of the time. It is not hard. You just talk to the people who show up sick and start connecting them. It would be a very easy case to make, especially in an environment like a school or day care center.

  • aelhues||

    Reasonably knowing the source, based on connecting the dots isn't exactly proof.

  • RBS||

    Doesn't have to be 0.

  • RBS||

    *100 percent.

  • R C Dean||

    Reasonably knowing the source sure sounds like preponderance of the evidence to me, which is the standard for civil claims.

  • John||

    Sure it is. It only takes a preponderance to win in civil court.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "...people who refuse to vaccinate for no good reason are, by their stupidity, a threat to me,..."

    There's the rub in all this conversation. What is and is not a good reason not to vaccinate and who decides?

  • ||

    Perhaps schools and daycare centers could attract clients by advertising that they protect their charges by refusing to admit unvaccinated students. Or social pressure might be exercised by parents who insist on assurances from other parents that their children are vaccinated before agreeing to playdates.

    This is the preferred route. In the prior thread, I threw out an idea for a voluntary vaccination bracelet kids could wear. This would allow parents to instruct their kids to shun children that have not been vaccinated, which would put enormous pressure on other parents to get their kids vaccinated.

    But it would be naïve not to note that state requirements that public school children be vaccinated against many highly contagious diseases have more than merely nudged most parents into getting their children vaccinated.

    It's also worth noting that parents who are opposed to vaccination can homeschool or send their kids to private schools that don't require vaccination. And in an ideal libertarian world, there would be no problem with private schools requiring vaccination.
    I don't really see much problem with making vaccination mandatory for admission to public schools.

  • ||

    I am not interested in associating with the ignorant possible hosts of deadly diseases.

    I am also not interested in coercing anyone into getting a needle shoved into them.

    Hazel has excellently applied Penn Jillette's thinking: Is there any way we can solve this problem with MORE freedom?

  • ||

    There is kind of a formula to it. Try to imagine what mechanisms might evolve in a genuinely libertarian society. We have social norms to enforce all sorts of rules in a non-violent way.

    How do social norms work? People obey them voluntarily. People who don't get shunned. How do you go about establishing a new social norm? You need a shared cue, such as a visual marker, to indicate who is obeying the norm and who isn't.

  • John||

    Goes back to the problems created by public schools. I am forced by law to send my kid to public school. Sure, educate them at home or send them to private school is an option for some but not everyone. If you are going to require people by law to send their kids to public schools, the state has a concomitant duty to ensure that children are not needlessly endangered by going there. Therefore, I see mandatory vaccination as a necessary evil associated with public schools.

    If you want to believe in the anti-vaccine cargo cult, you should have to send your kid to private school or home school.

  • CE||

    Dr. Singer worries that medical authoritarians would bend the arguments for vaccination to justify intrusions on liberty in the name of public health. Sadly, he is quite right.... The arguments for vaccination apply only to situations in which innocent bystanders are at risk of being harmed by contagious microbes. Sticking to that limiting principle would prevent a fall down a slippery slope toward public-health totalitarianism.

    Nice try. Today rubella shots for all to prevent birth defects, tomorrow forced flu vaccinations to prevent sniffles, with big money for Big Pharma. The slippery slope can't be avoided.

    Just because a reasonable libertarian-leaning commentator would be judicious in applying government power, doesn't mean actual government agents will be.

  • some guy||

    I'll bet Big Pharma makes more money per person treating the flu than preventing it.

  • ||

    You're clearly not an opportunistic capitalist; sell a preventatives that are varying levels of bogus and double-dip.

  • Zeb||

    The slippery slope can't be avoided.

    I don't think that is entirely obvious. It is stupid to deny that slippery slopes exist. But it is similarly stupid to assume that everything that looks like it might be a slippery slope will be.

  • ||

    Just because a reasonable libertarian-leaning commentator would be judicious in applying government power, doesn't mean actual government agents will be.

    Agreed. Define 'innocent' and 'bystander'. Is someone who participates in copious amounts of risky sex an 'innocent bystander' who can/should expect to be protected?

  • albo||

    This would allow parents to instruct their kids to shun children that have not been vaccinated

    As long as those kids touch different doorknobs and drink out of separate (but equal) water fountains, that would work for me.

  • brokencycle||

    If you're vaccinated, why are you very concerned about non-vaccinated people? I know it is still possible to catch the contagion, but odds are less.

    Also, I'm pretty sure that a pregnant woman smoking and drinking does put the baby at risk.

  • John||

    The only reason you are concerned is that it takes a few weeks for your body to develop an immunity.

  • some guy||

    Also, some people cannot get vaccinated for other health/age related reasons. Those people depend on herd immunity.

  • brokencycle||

    And all the poors rely on me to work and pay my taxes so they can get food stamps.

  • Cletus Starfish||

    Not even remotely analogous.

  • ||

    Because the real threat is to those who unfortunately cannot receive the vaccination and thus have to rely on herd immunity.

    I know, a libertarian concerned about others? He must be concerned that they won't be able to grow up to polish his monocle.

  • entropy||

    But what the hell. Who says he cannot receive the vaccination? Because it's bad for him? That's what everyone who doesn't want it claims as is.

    If you're going to vaccinate everyone, you have to do it to everyone. Including the people it might kill because of weird allergies. How do we get off forcing some people to be vaccinated just so other people can opt not to be?

    This 'herd immunity' is a positive right if ever I heard one. Everyone else has to provide some utopian risk environment so you don't suffer from having a shitty immune system.

  • John||

    But what the hell. Who says he cannot receive the vaccination? Because it's bad for him? That's what everyone who doesn't want it claims as is.

    Some people have violent allergic reactions to vaccines and really can't be safely vaccinated. It is a small number. But it seems a bit harsh to tell them to go fuck themselves and die because some retard is convinced vaccines cause autism.

  • entropy||

    Who's telling them to die? They just can't be vaccinated and have to take the normal risks about getting sick that everyone put up with before vaccinations even existed for thousands of years.

    Suddenly we invent vaccines and "Tuesday" becomes an unacceptable risk?

  • John||

    Who's telling them to die? They just can't be vaccinated and have to take the normal risks about getting sick that everyone put up with before vaccinations even existed for thousands of years.

    No they don't. Fuck if I have H1N1 and sneeze in your fucking coffee, I guess you have the same risk of getting sick everyone else does. Ah no, thanks to my negligence you now have a lot greater risk. And thanks to these idiots, everyone now has a much greater risk of getting sick.

    You do get the concept of risk don't you? If I am putting you at risk of harm, I am in the wrong.

  • robc||

    Then you can be sued for damages.

    I have no problems with letting civil courts handle the issue.

  • JWatts||

    "Then you can be sued for damages.

    I have no problems with letting civil courts handle the issue."

    How would that work? Are we going to force people who refuse vaccination for non-medical reasons to carry liability insurance?

    And would that really be better?

  • entropy||

    Dude, come on.

    At the time of vaccination you don't have the disease and don't even know if you will ever get exposed to it, let alone contract and transmit it.

    Not taking actions to decrease your risk for you is not the same as increasing your risk.

    NOT getting a vaccine does not decrease their safety from the base state of nature to which all are entitled. GETTING the vaccine increases it. A lack of an increase is not a decrease.

    Their safety is what it is. That is nature. If we can compel people to do things just because it might make other people safer? And failure to act for the Greater Safety is tantamount to harm?

    I'd be safer if you weren't allowed to drive. Granted, you may or may not hit anyone. But many people die in car crashes every day. Shall I request that you not be allowed to drive anywhere on the grounds that I will be safer off that way?

  • entropy||

    You do get the concept of risk don't you? If I am putting you at risk of harm, I am in the wrong.

    This is the idiotic part!

    If I do not get vaccinated, I am NOT increasing your risk.

    I am failing to reduce your risk from the natural state.

    Not getting vaccines does not PUT people at risk who otherwise would not have been. They were all already at risk. Not getting the vaccine does not increase risk - it just fails to reduce it.

    You're claiming a failure to reduce other people's risks is tantamount to increasing them.

  • ||

    Read all my comments, I don't support forcing anyone to do anything.

  • ||

    entropy has it exactly right: "herd immunity" is a positive right, and it's pretty funny watching a bunch of libertarians who claim to only be about negative rights promote the shit out of it. You do know that you guys sound exactly like progressives here, right? Just replace "herd immunity" with "social contract" and you're interchangeable. That must feel good.

  • robc||

    ^^This^^

    Gah, agreeing with Epi makes me feel icky.

    Or maybe its the "cold" I got from hanging around 2-year-olds this past weekend.

  • ||

    No, rob, it's from when I just now touched you inappropriately.

  • SugarFree||

    If only there was some sort of Episiarch vaccine...

  • John||

    entropy has it exactly right: "herd immunity" is a positive right,

    Why not? If it is not, then why do you or anyone ever have a duty to take any precaution to prevent harm to others?

  • Zeb||

    How is "herd immunity" a right of any kind? It is just a desirable state of affairs.

  • brokencycle||

    That was my underlying point. I get myself vaccinated and would vaccinate my children. That being said, forcing anyone to get vaccinated is wrong. Public institutions should not be allowed to require vaccines. Private institutions should be allowed to.

    Then again I'm just a crazy who believes in freedom of association (and not the progressive version).

  • robc||

    drinking of 1 unit of alcohol per day doesnt put the baby at risk.

    But no doctor would ever recommend that, although UK doctors seem to be more honest about it than USA doctors.

  • John||

    More US doctors recommend that than you think. They just do it very quietly.

  • robc||

    That does surprise me, as Ive never heard it even once.

    And nearly all my female friends have been pregnant in the last 5 years (Ive been busy).

  • John||

    I have numerous female friends who have gotten pregnant in the last five years and I would say at least half of them have gotten that advice

  • robc||

    Like I said, it surprises me, because none have said that their doctor told them that.

    I always tell them about why UK doctors used to recommend a Guinness per day.

    Answer: Zinc!

  • Cliché Bandit||

    "If you can;t feel it then neither can the baby. Use your judgement."

  • ||

    This is a good point.

    Although there are situations like (say) having a child that is too young to be vaccinated. Your one month old who hasn't gotten the MMR yet could still pick up measels from an unvaccinated child at the day care enter.

  • brokencycle||

    If you're worried about your kid getting measles, don't send them to a daycare before getting vaccinated. Don't rely on others to protect your own child.

  • kinnath||

    There is a rigorous schedule for vaccinating infants. Many infants have died from illness they were not yet vaccinated for because they were exposed to much older, unvaccinated kids that should have already been vaccinated.

    You could build a legal structure where the onus was on the parents of infants to keep them isolated until they had all there vaccinations. But we don't have that system now.

    Parents that do not vaccinate their kids and yet let them run loose in public are making very selfish and dangerous decisions in my opinion.

    That being said, I do not like legally mandated vaccinations. I would prefer we force unvaccinated kids be tattooed so that we can recognize them.

  • R C Dean||

    Also, I'm pretty sure that a pregnant woman smoking and drinking does put the baby at risk.

    Only in cases of extreme abuse.

  • Free Society||

    Being intentionally unvaccinated against highly contagious diseases is, to carry Holmes’ analogy a bit further, like walking down a street randomly swinging your fists without warning. You may not hit an innocent bystander, but you’ve substantially increased the chances that you will.

    This is a false equivalence, taking affirmative action to throw your fist randomly is not the same thing as parasites being transmitted between two involuntary hosts...

    There is nothing wrong with throwing your fist randomly. It becomes a problem when you exercise disregard in situations were randomness poses an excessive risk to others, like in crowded spaces et cetera. Similarly, when you know you have a communicable disease and continue on working in the kitchen sneezing on people's food or whatever, only then are you committing a transgression.

    The responsibleness of inaction is irrelevant to this issue, the issue is whether choosing to remain unvaccinated (partially or wholly) is transgressing against the rights of others. If a pack of wild wolves lived in your woods and killed a passerby, are you morally responsible for having not previously killed all the wolves?

  • Floridian||

    "If a pack of wild wolves lived in your woods and killed a passerby, are you morally responsible for having not previously killed all the wolves?"

    I consider this natural selection. If you walk in wolf infested woods without a weapon, you had that one a comin'.

  • robc||

    If you enter a day care center, you deserve whatever disease you catch.

  • Free Society||

    If you enter a day care center, you deserve whatever disease you catch.

    To a certain extent yeah. But in my experience, there is no shortage of parents who would knowingly drop their kid off with the flu so that they don't have to miss a day of work. The result, has been on numerous occasions, that I have to miss a week of work while I clean baby diarrhea. That's a moral transgression. And it's always the same damn disease ridden kid getting my daughter sick too... (his dad's a cop and his mom is a social worker if that says anything)

  • John||

    The responsibleness of inaction is irrelevant to this issue, the issue is whether choosing to remain unvaccinated (partially or wholly) is transgressing against the rights of others. If a pack of wild wolves lived in your woods and killed a passerby, are you morally responsible for having not previously killed all the wolves?

    If you provided them food and water and enabled them to live in your yard? Survey says yes. Not getting vaccinated is the same thing as providing food and shelter to the wolves.

  • robc||

    Not getting vaccinated is the same thing as providing food and shelter to the wolves.

    No it isnt.

    Not getting vaccinated is the same as not organizing a wolf hunt.

  • robc||

    Sigh, I know better than to respond to stupid analogies.

  • Zeb||

    Especially with another stupid analogy.

  • Free Society||

    How stupid can it be compared to the more common equivocation that remaining unvaccinated is the same as the intentional infection of others.

    It's analogy in my opinion. It deals with ownership and the presence of potentially hostile third party creatures (which are incapable of violating your rights). If wolves are a common problem in my area, it may be more reasonable to assert that it's responsible to take affirmative action to deter wolves from dwelling on my property. If the threat posed to others on the periphy of my forest is merely incidental, then it's not reasonable to assert that I should take action to deter wolves from dwelling on my property.

    Is it reasonable to infer that I'm violating your rights by not getting a polio vaccine? Are you seriously under that much of a threat from polio?

  • John||

    No, you are not hunting them. They are living in your body. Not getting vaccinated is the same thing as letting the wolves move into your garage.

  • ||

    Uh, you have a ton of bacteria in your body right now, John. Some of it nasty, and that doesn't have any kind of vaccine. Your strong immune system handles it just fine, but then you cough on a person with a compromised immune system and they get sick. Are you liable?

    These analogies are beyond absurd.

  • John||

    If I am sick with something that I could have been vaccinated for but didn't? Absolutely. In the case of your example, there is nothing I could or can do about those germs. But in the case of vaccination there is.

    The question is can you ever have a duty to take a precaution against a certain or likely event? You say no because you refuse to believe that anyone can ever be required to do something versus just refraining from doing something.

    I disagree. I think there are times where your refraining from action is so certain to result in harm, you have an affirmative duty.

    What if I have some horrible contagious form of flu and know it and then I don't tell anyone I have it and do nothing to prevent my spreading it, am I liable then? Should the health department be able to force me to take precautions? It seems to me by your theory I am doing nothing wrong and it is just too fucking bad for the people that I make sick.

  • ||

    Even vaccines don't always work, John. So you could take the precaution and still get people sick. Can I sue the shit out of you now? I mean, you are responsible, right?

  • John||

    Even vaccines don't always work, John.

    True. But no precaution ever does. Just because it is not 100% effective doesn't mean you can't have a duty to do it.

  • entropy||

    So your take here is you have a duty to do anything that might increase someone else's safety from hypothetical risks real or imagined?

  • entropy||

    I take it you're totally down with suing people if you fall off their stairs, or spill their coffee in your crotch?

    Because they didn't take preventative measures to ensure your safety. Dude had a staircase without a railing on it. Ideally, his failure to take action and install a railing makes him liable for you falling off, right? He didn't do his duty to ameliorate your risk on his staircase.

  • Free Society||

    No, you are not hunting them. They are living in your body. Not getting vaccinated is the same thing as letting the wolves move into your garage.

    So you're argument then, is that people refuse vaccines in order to become an intentional carrier of certain diseases? Your logic doesn't hold up.

  • some guy||

    I see you beat me to the point by a few minutes. Wolves... bears. Potato... Potahto.

  • R C Dean||

    The responsibleness of inaction is irrelevant to this issue,

    You just don't understand negligence, do you? Negligence is all about whether you can be held responsible for your inaction.

    If your lack of vaccination leads to the infection of others, why should you not be held responsible for it?

  • brokencycle||

    Let's say you own an in-ground pool, and you decide you don't need a fence, and a neighbor's kid walks into your yard and falls in and drowns. Are you responsible because you could have built a fence that would have prevented the death?

  • INFORG||

    I think in some jurisdictions you would absolutely be held responsible and also sued. Your homeowners insurance might also require it, etc. etc.

    "Attractive nuisance" I believe is the phrase they use.

    I think it is different than the vaccine issue being discussed here though another good topic for discussion about what one should be forced to do as opposed to what is just being a decent human being with common sense.

  • brokencycle||

    I agree that you would likely be held liable, but the question is should you as a matter of law?

  • Free Society||

    You took affirmative action when you built the pool. Not 'reasonably' securing it from potential loss would subject you to legal liability. Nor is the pool a living entity, it exists solely by it's owner's agency.

  • brokencycle||

    But people don't have a right to be on property without my permission.

  • Free Society||

    You just don't understand negligence, do you? Negligence is all about whether you can be held responsible for your inaction.

    While you're strawmanning me, please allow me finish the quote you cut and pasted.

    the issue is whether choosing to remain unvaccinated (partially or wholly) is transgressing against the rights of others.


    ^That stands. Being technically responsible doesn't make you morally or legally responsible. I'm not being a responsible neighbor when I build a house in Oklahoma without tornado straps and reinforced walls. Nonetheless, if a tornado picks up my house and kills someone, that doesn't make me legally or morally responsible for the results of a tornado. It's not a moral issue when acts of nature are the cause.

  • Jesus H. Christ||

    This issue seems to be Bailey's hobby horse. He's just not going to get off until a spanking is threatened.

  • ||

    I usually don't get off until the spanking is administered...

  • ||

    I think his favorite hobby horse is actually GMOs.

  • Paul.||

    I thought it was being an alt-text refusenik.

  • ||

    Being intentionally unvaccinated against highly contagious diseases is, to carry Holmes’ analogy a bit further, like walking down a street randomly swinging your fists without warning.

    What color is the sky in your world Baily? Your whole line of reasoning amounts to "We should institute fascism because some people are not working hard enough for the greater good".

  • Ken Shultz||

    I agree that individuals should be free to decide for themselves what they are and aren't injected with, but I see Bailey's side of the argument, too.

    There is like a tragedy of the commons aspect to this. If no one is held responsible for how they infect each other, it would seem to encourage irresponsible behavior that definitely kills children.

    I suspect Bailey is less tolerant (than most people) of the unscientific thinking that goes into the decisions a lot of people make when they choose not to vaccinate their children, too.

    I suspect he sees it as being like teaching creationism in public schools--except no children actually get killed because of someone's ignorance of evolution.

    ...but children really do die because of other people's stupid ideas about vaccines.

  • entropy||

    Interestingly, it is precisely immune-impaired people who would most benefit from the positive externality of widespread vaccination of other people

    That is the nonsense part. Everyone has to be vaccinated so some people don't have to be vaccinated?

  • Ken Shultz||

    Because so many people in the herd are vaccinated, when the pathogen infects one person in the herd, it is unlikely to spread past more than a few other people.

    So, the unvaccinated person (or the person for whom the vaccination didn't work), is still protected to some extent--because the pathogen is unlikely to spread to them.

    As fewer and fewer people in the herd get vaccinated, however, the less and less benefit there is to that "herd immunity". In other words, the more likely the person without a working vaccination is to become infected.

  • entropy||

    I understand how it works.

    The problem is the contradiction. You force everyone to get vaccinated so that no-one is safe from disease despite the fact that no-one is not vaccinated.

    So apparently some people won't be vaccinated. Others must be vaccinated whether they like it or not, to protect the people who won't be?

  • Ken Shultz||

    I think it's about the people for whom the vaccination was ineffective, too.

    Just becasue everybody was vaccinated, doesn't mean the vaccination worked and is protecting everybody.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vaccine_efficacy

    The only protection those people have is herd immunity, and the people who aren't getting vaccinated are necessarily compromising their safety.

    Again, I disagree with Bailey IF IF IF he's saying anybody should be forcibly immunized, but I see what he's talking about, and I think his arguments are valid even if I disagree with them.

  • Zeb||

    Your contradiction only exists if you assume that everyone who gets vaccinated will be immune and that is not true. Vaccines don't always work. And you generally don't find out if it did or not until you get sick. So even if everyone is vaccinated, not everyone is immune. And some people can't be vaccinated because of immune system diseases or allergies. So the contradiction you see doesn't really exist. Vaccination is not a guarantee that you won't get the disease.

    I still oppose forcing anyone. But social pressure and incentives for vaccination are a good thing.

  • OldMexican||

    In the post-Pasteur era, people no longer have the excuse of ignorance.


    They should kill themselves if they find they have drug-resistant tuberculosis! Ignorance is no excuse! Neither is self-preservation!

    What would be the excuse for authoritarian assholes to unduly force others to do something against their will? Why would that excuse be as valid in this case compared to any other cases, for instance: the prohibition on 32OZ colas, or smoking pot?

  • Ken Shultz||

    "We agree that people who are known to be at a heightened risk from vaccines, such as people with impaired immune systems, should surely not be vaccinated."

    What about people with hyperactive immune systems?

    Ulcerative Colitis flares up when sufferers contract the flu or the common cold. Certainly, for people whose immune system attacks their organs as if some absent pathogen were there, it would seem to be counterintuitive, to say the least, to inject them with a vaccine that jacks up their immune system to fight something that isn’t there.

    Oh, and my understanding is that a proclivity for hyperactive immune disorders has a genetic basis. If people suspect their children might have inherited a genetic proclivity to develop a hyperactive autoimmune disorder, then I can see why they might want to minimize a child's vaccinations.

    Interestingly, it is precisely immune-impaired people who would most benefit from the positive externality of widespread vaccination of other people.

    Assuming this applies to people with hyperactive autoimmune disorders, too...

    When parents are considering the pros and cons of vaccinating a child that they suspect has a higher probability of developing a hyperactive autoimmune disorder, then it seems very reasonable for them to weigh the benefits of herd immunity into their decision.

  • Brian||

    In the case of vaccination, the non-aggression principle, the harm principle, and proper respect for the autonomy of others combine to point to the libertarian conclusion that the intentionally unvaccinated do not have a right to “swing” their microbes at other people.

    Fine. Then ostracize and avoid people who don't vaccinate. We're not required to associate with people who don't vaccinate (that is, to the extend that the government doesn't require us to).

    Make everyone who comes onto your property provide certification that they're vaccinated. Only go to stores and other places that require proof of vaccination.

    The answer doesn't necessarily have to be "force everyone to be vaccinated." Yeah, it might be more complicated and more expensive, but so are lots of things. Cheap and simple doesn't justify doing whatever we want.

  • robc||

    As I told Ron last time, its his right to live in a fucking bubble for his entire life.

    If he chooses not to, not my problem.

  • ||

    Isn't it amazing how many self-professed "libertarians" go full-on statist and full-on willing to use force over this issue? It's frankly disgusting. But, as we've all seen too many times to count, even most "libertarians" are fine with using force when it comes to their particular hobby horse; they just have less hobby horses than your average statist.

    "You didn't immunize yourself, now I own your body and will force this needle into it! I can't prove you're a threat to me, because you're not sick, but I don't care! Hold him down, boys!"

  • robc||

    I was saying the exact same thing in a thread earlier today.

  • Zeb||

    How many people are actually promoting use of force to make people get vaccinated? Most of what I see is people saying that people should unless they have a good reason not to and if they don't then they are dicks. And some suggesting liability if you get other people sick (which is problematic in several ways, I agree). But who has said that there should be a law requiring vaccinations for everyone?

  • Zeb||

    OK, reading a bit further on, I see that John and perhaps a few others do seem to be arguing for forced vaccination.

  • Free Society||

    By arguing that not being vaccinated is a violation of the rights of others, you're arguing that using force to prevent this supposed infringement, is legitimate. So the use of force really is at stake here, whether they realize it or not.

  • John||

    Fine. Then ostracize and avoid people who don't vaccinate.

    How am i supposed to do that if I don't know who they are? By not supporting mandatory vaccination, you are telling a good number of people "you get to fuck off and die because a certain group of morons refuses to vaccinate their kids".

    I get the principle of it. But if there is a more idiotic and counter productive hill for Libertarians to die on, I am unaware of what it would be.

  • robc||

    I get the principle of it.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcbAibPA2yY

  • John||

    What we have here is a case of complete and utter ignorance that results in serious harm to other people.

    If people don't get vaccinated, these diseases will come and back and more than just the people who choose not to get vaccinated will get sick and some of them will die.

    I just not seeing how your freedom not to get vaccinated is more important than someone else' freedom not to get sick and die. Is is really the case that Libertarians stand for the principle that "your child should die so that Jenny McArthy has the right to be a complete ignoramus"?

  • robc||

    There is no case freedom not to get sick and die.

    We are all going to die.

    Is is really the case that Libertarians stand for the principle that "your child should die so that Jenny McArthy has the right to be a complete ignoramus"?

    Yes.

    But I blame the parents for letting their kids play with Jenny's kids.

  • wareagle||

    seems the Jenny argument could be taken to imply that it's okay for her to use her version of aggression in NOT having kids immunized. Her choice, and that of the like-minded, also affects me.

  • John||

    But I blame the parents for letting their kids play with Jenny's kids.

    What if they don't know Jenny is an idiot?

    There is no case freedom not to get sick and die.

    Okay. So if I have resistant TB and don't give a shit and cough on you, that is just tough shit for you? I haven't done anything wrong? You don't a freedom not to get sick. You are going to die anyway.

    That is complete fucking nonsense. If I have resistant TB I have a duty to take some kind of responsible precaution not to give it to someone just like I have a duty to get vaccinated so I don't get sick and give it to someone else. Getting vaccinated is no different in kind than putting my hand over my mouth when I cough. They are both an affirmative action that I have a duty to do to keep from doing harm to others.

  • Brian||

    That is complete fucking nonsense. If I have resistant TB I have a duty to take some kind of responsible precaution not to give it to someone just like I have a duty to get vaccinated so I don't get sick and give it to someone else.

    Why is it that a person with resistant TB has a duty to take reasonable precaution to avoid giving it to someone else, but a person is required to get vaccinated? Why can't an unvaccinated person just take responsible precautions to avoid contracting whatever the illness in question is, and, in the case that they get it, take responsible precaution not to infect others with it?

    I think it's incredibly close-minded to say: "One answer: mandatory, government vaccinations!"

  • John||

    Why can't an unvaccinated person just take responsible precautions

    Because not getting vaccinated is unreasonable. If you don't get vaccinated you are not taking reasonable precautions to keep others from getting sick.

    It is called duty of care.

  • R C Dean||

    Why is it that a person with resistant TB has a duty to take reasonable precaution to avoid giving it to someone else, but a person is required to get vaccinated?

    Because "reasonable precaution" = "getting vaccinated"?

  • brokencycle||

    That's not the same thing. Just like if you have HIV and knowingly have unprotected sex.

    The state has no right to stick a needle in your arm for the good of society or for Jenny or you or whoever the fuck.

    That doesn't give you the right to knowingly infect other people with diseases. Also, if you're vaccinated, you shouldn't be very concerned.

    You're using the statist logic for everything economic for this.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "But I blame the parents for letting their kids play with Jenny's kids."

    Something to consider is whether people should be able to sue other parents for letting their children infect other children with a horrible disease.

    It would seem to be a form of negligence.

    I know about Jenny's kids, but what about everyone else's?

    If you knowingly send your unimmunized kids out to play with other kids who are immunized, and if your unimmunized kid subsequently infects someone else's kid, then if I'm on the jury, I'm going to be very sympathetic to the plaintiff if he sues you for negligence.

  • entropy||

    someone else' freedom not to get sick and die.

    WHO THE HELL GAVE YOU THAT?!?

    John has apparently acquired a government-sponsored right to live forever.

  • John||

    WHO THE HELL GAVE YOU THAT?!?

    You have a duty to take reasonable precautions not to make other people sick you fucking half wit.

    It is amazing how you people fixate on magic words like "contract" or "freedom" and become totally incapable of second order reasoning.

  • wareagle||

    there is this thing called 'duty of care' within tort law wherein people are held to some standard when doing things that could foreseeably hurt others.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "WHO THE HELL GAVE YOU THAT?!?"

    The right not be killed by other people's negligence?

    I can be against the government violating our gun rights and also be against negligently killing someone with a gun.

  • aelhues||

    Freedom to not get sick and die? When did I gain that freedom?

    Conflating the position that one should have the right to decide whether they trust the government and pharma enough to take a vaccination or not, with killing babies, and supporting Jenny M's right to be an ignoramus, makes you look like an ignoramus.

    I suppose you are one of those, "the science is settled on AGW", guys also...

  • Brian||

    How am i supposed to do that if I don't know who they are?

    I already answered that question.

    By not supporting mandatory vaccination, you are telling a good number of people "you get to fuck off and die because a certain group of morons refuses to vaccinate their kids".

    Bullshit. And the degree to which we really don't care and don't want to be inconvenienced by avoiding people who aren't vaccinated is directly proportionate to just how big a problem this isn't. We're all fine with forcing people to vaccinate to keep people safe, because we assume someone else takes care of it. But go through the trouble to avoid the unvaccinated ourselves? That requires effort! Too hard! Bring on the state!

    If you care that badly, go through the trouble to avoid them. And if you don't, then it's not worth invoking the state to begin with.

    If people want to risk mingling with potentially unvaccinated people, that's their right. They don't get to run around forcing needles into everyone's arms. Similarly, if the unvaccinated want to hang out with each other, there's no harm in that, and they should be allowed to, especially if they respect the requests of people who aren't vaccinated and avoid them.

    Now, if an unvaccinated person is directly violating people's desires to avoid them, , then that's a problem.

  • ||

    Here's another question for John, related to your post, Brian: John, are you personally willing to go around forcing vaccinations on people? You have to hold them down. You have to inject them. You have to restrain them when they struggle. You.

    Still willing to do this?

  • John||

    ohn, are you personally willing to go around forcing vaccinations on people? Y

    For sure. Why wouldn't I? I am willing to go around and put down rabid dogs or help tear down a building that is about to collapse on its neighbor?

    The fact that taking little Jenny's snowflakes and sticking a needle in their arm is distasteful doesn't make it less the right thing to do. In an ideal world, you wouldn't have to. But thanks to these idiots' ignorance, we are forced to choose the lesser of two evils.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "The fact that taking little Jenny's snowflakes and sticking a needle in their arm is distasteful doesn't make it less the right thing to do. In an ideal world, you wouldn't have to. But thanks to these idiots' ignorance, we are forced to choose the lesser of two evils."

    This is what the left says about our guns.

  • wareagle||

    your having a gun or a hundred guns is not, in and of itself, a danger to me. Your having TB or smallpox may well be.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Guns MAY be dangerous to you.

    John just goes over the line with talking about forcibly injecting people. To respect people's freedom, you don't go after them until after they're done something to hurt somebody.

    We don't take people's guns away before they hurt somebody--we put them on trial after they've hurt somebody with a gun.

    If John wants to sue irresponsible parents for giving his children a horrible disease, then he should be free to do so after the fact, and the parents who decide not to vaccinate their children should have to take the fact that John might sue them into consideration when they make their decision.

    Same way with guns. We don't take them away before people can get them. But negligent homicide is a serious charge. Better think carefully before you use that gun irresponsibly.

  • Free Society||

    For sure. Why wouldn't I?

    There's not much difference between you and your average jackboot statist. You merely harbor a different set of pragmatic concerns for 'the greater good'.

  • John||

    And the degree to which we really don't care and don't want to be inconvenienced by avoiding people who aren't vaccinated is directly proportionate to just how big a problem this isn't.

    That is just a complete fantasy. You sound as stupid McArthy. Once these diseases come back, they will come back in a big way and you won't be able to tell who is vaccinated and who is not or have any way to completely avoid expose.

    If we could not get sick by just avoiding those who are, we wouldn't need vaccinations in the first place you fucking moron.

  • Brian||

    If we could not get sick by just avoiding those who are, we wouldn't need vaccinations in the first place you fucking moron.

    This implies that you can't avoid someone with resistant TB.

    Are we all dying of resistant TB?

  • John||

    Are we all dying of resistant TB?

    More than a few people are. And a lot more would be if we didn't quarantine.

    And sure you can get lucky. But so what? Is it your position we don't need any vaccinations? We can just avoid each other?

  • Brian||

    Also, if you think it's impossible to tell who is vaccinated and who isn't, how the hell do you think the government figures that out?

    Do you really think the government can figure that out, but private individuals are completely incapable?

    My point isn't that vaccination is a bad idea. The point is that mandatory vaccinations can be accomplished without government.

    Consider it taking government mandated vaccinations, and privatizing them.

  • wareagle||

    Now, if an unvaccinated person is directly violating people's desires to avoid them, , then that's a problem.

    so how do you differentiate between those who are and are not vaccinated?

  • Brian||

    so how do you differentiate between those who are and are not vaccinated?

    Perhaps, the same way the government does? If it's impossible, than mandatory vaccinations by the government are impossible to begin with.

  • wareagle||

    govt's knowledge is limited to things it controls, like schools. No shots, no enrollment. The homeschoolers and some private schoolers are outside of that purview.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    A badge might work. Perhaps in a lovely shade of bright yellow.

  • wareagle||

    We're not required to associate with people who don't vaccinate (that is, to the extend that the government doesn't require us to).

    protected class of the future.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Where's Perry Mason, Jr: Political Theologian?

    This is a question perfectly suited to his obsessive-compulsive quibbling and hectoring.

  • RishJoMo||

    Slappy JoJo is not going to like that at all dude.

    www.AnonGoes.tk

  • The Late P Brooks||

    What about the people who sell deep fried bacon wrapped hot dogs?
    They're just like murderers!

    Society cannot stand by and allow them to spew their poisons indiscriminately.

  • SugarFree||

    +1 drone strike

  • robc||

    or Raw Milk!

    Murders, one and all!

  • Carnival||

    False equivalence.

    If I am an unlucky child for whom a vaccine for, say, typhoid is not effective (this is a real phenomena), and I go to private school with some other child who's idiot parents didn't vaccinate them, and they carry typhoid, then I am in serious trouble through no fault of my own.

    If you eat bacon hot-dogs (yuck) or drink raw milk, you're making a choice about what you're exposing yourself to. A child doesn't have that ability to choose.

  • Brian||

    If I am an unlucky child for whom a vaccine for, say, typhoid is not effective (this is a real phenomena), and I go to private school with some other child who's idiot parents didn't vaccinate them, and they carry typhoid, then I am in serious trouble through no fault of my own.

    This sounds like a very good reason to insist that any private school you send your child to has vaccination standards for all the children.

    If every parent of every child who wanted to avoid vaccination had to consider sending their child to a special, anti-vaccine school, and going to special, anti-vaccine day cares, and special, anti-vaccine sports teams, with special, anti-vaccine stores to shop in, you'd probably have as effective a mandatory vaccination campaign as the government could pull off.

    I think vaccination standards are great. I don't think mandatory, government standards are necessary.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Running down this comment page, I find the accusationm of fascism against the supporters of compulsory vaccination, a suggestion that unvaccinated children be tatooed, etc.

    This is why there are no libertarian Popes.

  • John||

    I am not seeing how forcing kids to get tattoos or wear state required badges of shame is any less intrusive than just making them get vaccinated.

  • wareagle||

    because govt by almost definition is force and short of anarchy, some level of force is going to be present. Seems a few folks would like a society with none, though I don't see how it's possible to have a society that way.

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    If it's a serious suggestion and not snark, tattoos amd badges are worse than a little shot in private.

    And while adults should generally be presumed to know their childrens' interests better than the state, that presumption is overcome when the patent exposes the child tompreventable diseases.

  • ||

    At least we don't seem to have any Jenny McCarthyites in this thread.

    YET.

  • John||

    I hate those people with the heat of a thousand sons. Of all of the ignorant shit to believe. Clean water, sewers and vaccination are responsible for 90% of the improvement in our life expectancy over the last 100 years.

    These people might as well be saying "of course we teach our children to eat their own shit. Not eating shit causes autism". I really hope that bitch gets a painful disease. She really deserves it.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    "of course we teach our children to eat their own shit. Not eating shit causes autism"

    In a really bizarre way, there is some scientific merit to that.

  • John||

    Not quite to that extreme. Baby shit has things like polio and e-coli in it. Letting your kids play in the dirt is one thing.

  • ||

    I'm sympathetic to the people who don't want to force these idiots to vaccinate their kids, but I have no sympathy at all for the anti-vaccine retards. If you're so gullible that you don't vaccinate your kids, you deserve to watch them die of some easily prevented bullshit disease. Idiots.

  • Carnival||

    Yes, but does the child deserve to die just so that the parents can suffer for their stupidity.

    Anyone who believes in the right to life of all beings would, of course, answer "no."

  • Loki||

    Oh yay, now all we need is an abortion thread, a circumcision thread, and a deep dish pizza thread.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I read that the true reason for the Confederacy's succession was that Lincoln was going to abort all babies and the circumcising their fetuses and using the foreskins to top his deep dish pizza (He represented Illinois, after all).

  • wareagle||

    better ingredients, better pizza...Papa Abe.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I'm laughing, but why? Goddamn you! Why am I laughing!?!

  • John||

    Cutting your kids foreskin off, barbaric and per say illegal. Leaving them unvaccinated and at risk of getting a life threatening disease, FREEDOM.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I'm not an anti-vaxer by any stretch of the imagination, but there are studies that link circumcision to lower transmission of HIV. Should we circumcise all males, be they Jew, Muslim, or Gentile, to prevent the spread of HIV? And should we use the force of the state to do it?

    I don't have an answer. Issues of self-ownership are easy when we're talking about adults, but with children it's always going to be messier.

  • Free Society||

    zing

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Let me give you a tip...that's it, tbat's the joke.

  • ||

    So, anyone else love flouride?

  • ||

    I've noticed two facts go unaddressed in this discussion;

    1. Carriers. It is been assumed that vaccination renders one a terminus to infection but often you simply become a carrier. You are still quite capable of contracting and passing the disease despite being immune; meaning the whole 'I got vaccinated so I'm not swinging my microbes at people.' idea is rather bunk.

    2. Boosters. Vaccines don't guarantee absolute immunity for all time and everyone's immune system reacts to vaccinations differently. The only way to know "for sure" that immunity is been achieved is through immunoglobulin and viral load titers. It's quite easy to have gotten a vaccination against a disease and still suffer and/or communicate the disease. Again, this sort of debunks the idea that only unvaccinated people are swinging their microbes around.

    So, monthly Ig and viral load titers for all infectious diseases to *prove* that you aren't a liability?

    And I don't even want to touch the idea of spreading beneficial microbes.

  • John||

    Vaccines don't guarantee absolute immunity for all time and everyone's immune system reacts to vaccinations differently. The only way to know "for sure" that immunity is been achieved is through immunoglobulin and viral load titers.

    Totally irrelevant. You don't have to know 100% for sure. If everyone gets vaccinated, the level of disease drops to a point that the few who don't get the full effect are no longer in danger. If it mattered that vaccines were not 100% effective, mass vaccination would have never eliminated childhood disease, which it did.

  • entropy||

    If 100% of everyone stopped driving, or even if just 90% of them did, there would be much less traffic deaths.

    Why are you trying to kill people and put them in danger? Their right to not be hit by a truck trumps your right to commute further than 5 miles from your house regularly.

  • ||

    You don't have to know 100% for sure. If everyone gets vaccinated, the level of disease drops to a point that the few who don't get the full effect are no longer in danger. If it mattered that vaccines were not 100% effective, mass vaccination would have never eliminated childhood disease, which it did.

    Wrong on so many levels. Only two diseases have been eliminated and guess which governments mandated vaccination by law on those?

    Biology aside, arguing in favor of vaccines and herd immunity vis-a-vis is, inherently, a communist argument. The herd must exist before herd immunity can be achieved and sacrificing individuals and their liberties to create and protect the herd is endemic to the ideology. Not only is this in opposition to libertarian ideology, it repeatedly proves itself useful in other communist ideological arguments. There are lots of ways to make the herd immune to lots of things. Often it makes being an individual the herd undesirable.

    Lemme ask you this John, had your gardasil vaccination?

  • ||

    Let me ask it better this way John, would you want you, me, or someone else deciding if you get your gardasil vaccination?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    And I don't even want to touch the idea of spreading beneficial microbes.

    Indeed. Let's not put the line many of us use to convince ladies to swallow under too much scrutiny.

    I call it the "probiotics shot".

  • Ken Shultz||

    "And I don't even want to touch the idea of spreading beneficial microbes."

    They've got a term for that.

    It's called "raw milk".

  • brokencycle||

    The real question that remains unanswered is are we forced to continue associating with "John"?

  • Carnival||

    I'm surprised at how little people are thinking about the children in question's right to life.

    If I'm a parent, and I choose not to have my child vaccinated, I would say that I am guilty of negligence, just as if I had only fed my child potato chips 3 meals a day, or left a loaded firearm in their play-pen.

    If you're in favor of making it mandatory for parents to feed and clothe their children, or not abuse them, I don't see why making it mandatory for parents to vaccinate a child is any different. When you turn 18, then you can make your own choices.

  • ||

    The difference being, children have and do survive and live entirely normal lives without vaccination unlike (sub-)minimally feeding and clothing them.

    Foregoing vaccination and putting your child in the care of a Polio victim might be criminal and more resembles putting a loaded firearm in a playpen but, often, you've crossed the line from negligence to acting with intent.

    Forgoing vaccination is criminally, to me, somewhere between having a kid and loading a gun and loading a gun with a kid in the room. The latter may not be the best idea, but it's always a better idea than creating a task force (or empowering an existing task force) to ensure that no guns are loaded in an unsafe manner in the presence of children anywhere.

  • LynchPin1477||

    I'm not 100% decided on this issue but I leans towards no forced vaccinations, so let me pose this hypothetical to those who are squarely on the other side: Suppose that the anti-vaccine crowd was right and vaccines really did cause autism, or some other harmful condition, in a significant fraction of cases. What would you say to the people affected? "Sorry we forced you to do something against your will, but we really thought we knew better than you. Tough luck."? That reminds me of a lot of progressive responses to their shitty policies (Obamacare policy cancellations come to mind as a recent example).

    Let me be clear: I don't think vaccines are harmful. I'm not anti-vaccine and I fully intend to get my future kids vaccinated. But I can't guarantee that everything the government might force people to do, using the same logic as would be used for forced vaccinations, is always going to be safe and free of unforeseen consequences.

  • Carnival||

    "What if the government really was reverse-engineering alien technology at Area 51?"

    Like your question, this is something you can ask, and maybe you could have an interesting discussion about, but the odds of it being true are so astronomically small that spending time thinking about it is essentially a waste of time.

  • HenryC||

    Should you be able to sue someone you catch a disease from if he could have gotten a vaccination and did not? Should it be limited to patient zero?

  • Almanian!||

    "Aw, dad - can't we just kill 'im?"

  • Almanian!||

    Mrs. Almanian and I received all our shots at the vet...er, school, as did all our offspring. Therefore, I am skipping this debate and going right to the REAL issue:

    - circumcised gay craft brewed deep dish pizza

    OR

    - uncircumcized artisinal mayonnaise homeschooled hipster boot-cut hot sauce

    COMMENCE THE DEBATE!

  • Cliché Bandit||

    boot-cut... lol

  • mepton||

    As Bailey continues to blatantly equate action and inaction in his reasoning here, he's sticking by a logically contradictory position.

    And that's not even getting into his bizarre claim that having knowledge that microbes may (or may not!) be present is somehow sufficient to convey both property rights and responsibilities.

    Fundamentally, it is impossible to by inaction act against another. The rest of the hoops Bailey sets up to justify forcing people to abide by his preferences are longwinded attempts to get around that fundamental contradiction.

  • Carnival||

    Your logic is flawed.

    If I see a drowning man in a lake and I choose the path of inaction (walking away and letting him drown), I have still acted.

    Even inaction is a form of action. Anywhere there is choice, there is action.

  • ||

    Sarcasm, right?

  • Edwin||

    you know, I've been commenting from a libertarian perspective

    but I guess I should say, while I am mostly libertarian (just not doctrinaire/ extremist /aspberger Douche,Nerd,Boy,Derp), I don't really care about whether vacination policies are libertarian. The fact of the matter is societally certain policies are just better than others , and they usually have to do with something fundamental to nature and/or human nature (think "Guns, Germs and Steel") and successful societies make policies to deal with them.

    One of those things is pestilence, which has plagued mankind since the beginnning of history. Another, just as a side example, is reproduction; most soieties have used marriage and other stuff to encourage as many babies as possible, taking advantage of our human capability to do so which is one of the reasons fr our success, because a society needs to be constantly growing and always have more in the future than the past to move the world forward (we do this now through taxes, but the principle is the same; see the doomed state of social security because of demographics)

    nothing has to be outright forced, our current system is pretty good. You have to do a lot of extra stuff if you don't want to vaccinate your kids.

  • ||

    For once Ron and I agree thoroughly. I would have argued differently, but the conclusion is the same.

    Forget taking responsibility for 'your' microbes. It is too easy to argue against those critters being yours. Your body most certainly is yours and it is a vector for bugs, you do have an obligation to take responsibility for that. Not doing so puts others bodies at risk without thier consent. Removing your body as a possible stepping stone for deadly pathogens at very little risk to yourself squares very nicely with libertarian principles and in my view your responsibility.

  • earthandweather||

    Here's the thing....What would "requiring" vaccinations be like in practice? I can easily picture some very disquieting shit. "We the people" have decided that you will be held down and injected with this substance for the good of the herd. I would rather live with the risk of infection and keep the whole thing completely consensual. Reasonable people will co-operate with a reasonable vaccination policy as prescribed by their trusted physician. Unreasonable people will do what unreasonable people do....We must each do what we can within the limits of our individual rights to mitigate the damage their personal decisions may cause us.

  • ||

    Removing your body as a possible stepping stone for deadly pathogens at very little risk to yourself squares very nicely with libertarian principles and in my view your responsibility.

    Wrong. Getting a vaccine because it is cheap and prevents you from suffering from a disease is the essence of libertarian ideology. Getting a vaccine without regard to the cost and incurring *any* personal risk because you *might* pass a disease on is singularly communist.

    The former doesn't preclude the latter, but the latter makes no consideration of the former. Even in infectious situations, phenomenally rarely if ever, can an individual kill the entire herd. Overwhelmingly, only herds kill other herds.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Vaccinations are SOOO good? Donating my blood or my bone marrow is SOOO good? WHEN am I going to get a tax deduction for ANY of this stuff?!?!

  • Joseph C. Moore (USN Ret.||

    If you believe so strongly in the protection afforded by vaccination, I would assume that you have been vaccinated to preclude catching the disease, so why are you assuming that my not getting vaccinated would affect YOU?

  • brokencycle||

    I was also thinking how this whole defense of forcing vaccines sounds a lot like liberal talk for gun control. Guns can kill people so we need to take them so people don't accidentally die or people use them for bad reasons.

    Like I said, I am vaccinated and I would have potential children vaccinated; however, the defense of mandatory vaccines by the state sounds dangerously progressive.

  • LifeStrategies||

    Exactly! I couldn't agree more, see my comment below...

  • LifeStrategies||

    This sounds scarily like the precautionary principle advocating by some leftists. If it could happen, no matter how remote the possibility, then you need to take precautions against it. Do vaccines ever have adverse reactions in some people? Yes. Is every vaccine guaranteed not hospitalize anybody ever? No.

    I'm in favor of vaccination, but also in favor of maximizing freedom. I like the words of the second amendment "shall not be infringed." So don't ever advocate infringing the freedom of others. Each person needs the freedom to make up their mind for themselves - which means NO COERCION...

  • signalfire||

    No coercion, and FULL KNOWLEDGE. Right now we're not being told the full truth about the vaccination's risks and benefits. Given the amount of profit in these things, the propaganda swings fully over to the 'take this, you'll be fine' line, which is patently untrue. Read the studies by people who don't have a billion dollars in the fight.

  • d_remington||

    How about you get to stick your needle in my arm if I get to stick my knife in your eye?

  • earthandweather||

    Here's the thing....What would "requiring" vaccinations be like in practice. I can easily picture some very disquieting shit. "We the people" have decided that you will be held down and injected with this substance for the good of the herd. I would rather live with the risk of infection and keep the whole thing completely consensual. Reasonable people will co-operate with a reasonable vaccination policy as prescribed by their trusted physician. Unreasonable people will do what unreasonable people do....We must each do what we can within the limits of our individual rights to mitigate the damage their personal decisions may cause us.

  • thevaccinemachine||

    More gibberish from Bailey. Poorest excuse of a libertarian I've ever seen.

    -people could not be expected to be responsible for their microbes.

    People don't "have" microbes in any that would imply responsibility for them. The microbes are unwanted and unknown trespassers. More correctly the microbes have the person.

    -Being intentionally unvaccinated... [is] like walking down a street randomly swinging your fists without warning.

    Nonsense on the most basic level. Not being vaccinated is not the same as being infected. As such there is no swinging and there are no fists. And even if there were an infection it would be the microbe swinging it's fist and we're not responsible to stop the actions of microbes

    -You may not hit an innocent bystander, but you’ve substantially increased the chances that you will.

    More nonsense. Being unvaccinated does not increase the risks of anything. It just fails to lower extant risks

  • ||

    ^This^

    And even if there were an infection it would be the microbe swinging it's fist and we're not responsible to stop the actions of microbes

    [sarcasm]

    And it should be obvious to all the unwashed heathens that the onus is on all of us to give our utmost to putting each and every last fist-swinger in a straight jacket so that no one gets punched.

    [/sarcasm]

  • thevaccinemachine||

    Those harmed by the irresponsibility of the unvaccinated in those cases are not being accorded the inherent equal dignity and rights --- -that libertarians believe every individual possesses. The autonomy of the unvaccinated somehow trumps the autonomy of those they put at risk.

    I think you are confused and are really a consequentialist and not a libertarian. You have no given any evidence not vaccinating is irresponsible and, as I corrected you on the comment thread of your last post, not vaccinating puts no one at risk. The risk is already there or there would be nothing to vaccinate against. What part of this do you not understand?

  • signalfire||

    If you're so sure that vaccines work, you shouldn't be upset if there are people walking around unvaccinated. They'll get sick, not you, right?

    As far as 'immunocompromised' people, maybe we should take a good long look at exactly WHY there are so many of these (maybe it's a side effect of long ago vaccinations??). In any event, it may be up to them to stay away from crowds; it's the only solution to that disease, anyway.

    There is evidence that the newly vaccinated shed virii, thus putting other people at risk. Are you also advocating putting these people in prison or solitary confinement or some such during the shedding time frame? What if the outbreaks are caused by newly vaccinated people? Certainly there's a case to be made for our current daycare/cubicle culture being one of the problems. Sick kids being taken to daycare because their parents can't afford to miss a few days of work, times thousands a day, every day.

    I saved this point for last, not that anyone is listening, but there IS evidence that vaccines are adulterated with god-knows-what, and that some children have had horrific responses to them. The current vaccine recommendation chart is horrific to contemplate with the amount of different diseases being injected into tiny arms by the age of 2. We really don't know how much harm that can cause, especially in a culture that values profit so much. If it was your 2 year old kid, would you be so trusting of big medicine and big government?? Really?

  • thevaccinemachine||

    On the other hand, the intentionally unvaccinated are the only group that deliberately free-rides on the positive externality of herd immunity that the rest of us confer on them

    The actions of those vaccinating for their own, not our benefit, cannot and do not impose obligations on others. Additionally it you think "free riding" is a problem, stop vaccinating or stop whining about it. And even if this were a problem, we don't use violence against the innocent, to solve "problems." Besides the argument is circular since there would be no free riding possible without compulsory vaccination laws which themselves are inherently immoral

  • signalfire||

    Maybe read this, unless you've all already made your 'reasonable' minds up...

    http://www.vaccinationinformat.....can-brain/

  • MoreFreedom||

    "My intent was to leave open the question of how to hold the intentionally unvaccinated liable for the damage they cause others"

    Cannot people be held liable for transmitting a disease to someone else, evening unknowingly? Shouldn't those who choose to not get vaccinated, and spread a disease as a result, be held accountable?

    And can't medical detectives often determine from whom a disease was caught? I suppose this probably varies across communicable diseases, but I'm not a doctor nor familiar with things like incubation periods of various microbes/germs.

    Perhaps those with some knowledge in the are could fill us in?

  • Rach||

    Ok, Libertarian in me: "we are free people to do as we wish except where it it harms others".

    Is argument is does me not getting a vaccination rise to a level of harm that requires third party intervention (Government, laws or courts)?

    IMHO part of having freedom is twofold; respecting the freedom of idiots to be idiots and the freedom to protect my self from idiots.

    I get myself and my children vaccinated not to protect others, but to protect my children and myself.

    Using vaccinations as an example of the harm that needs intervention when there are steps to protect yourself from those who don't vaccinate is a low bar for government intrusion. From that starting point, fatty food eating is subject to oversight as it "harms" other via the healthcare system strain.

  • ||

    Fatty food doesn't cause obesity, in fact the opposite is true. Your body needs natural fats. When it doesn't receive the natural fats it needs, it panicks - FAMINE! - and desperately stocks up on anything it can grab onto that even looks like fat; since this energy doesn't really need to be used right away, body stores it up.

    And a lot of obesity is literally "stuffed" emotion. Stop trying to feed your emotional hungers with physical foods. That empty gaping aching hole everybody has inside can't be filled with any amount of cream pie - it's the need for love. If you can't get love from anyone else, then give it to yourself.

    Love yourself more.

  • lucius.junius.brutus||

    If I am vaccinated, does it matter if other people get sick? Doesn't my vaccine give me immunity? Not snark, a genuine question.

  • florrichd553||

    my neighbor's sister-in-law makes 61 USD hourly on the laptop. She has been fired for 6 months but last month her income was 19604 USD just working on the laptop for a few hours. over here
    ➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨
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  • ULOST||

    I'm listening. He's 2 and, no, I did not trust big goober because big goober (and John) can't be trusted.

  • ULOST||

    I'm listening. He's 2 and, no, I did not trust big goober because big goober (and John) can't be trusted.

  • MikeP2||

    I would propose that the simplest solution is to let the free market deal with it.
    Health insurance will no longer cover care stemming from vaccinatable (sp?)diseases. You get measles after refusing the vaccine: tough shit, pay for it out of pocket.
    If you get vaccinated you get a health care rebate for contributing to pool immunity.
    This is easy to document and prove. Can't document your child hood vaccines....well, they can readily test for the antibodies that show you either had it or were vaccinated against it. They will even give you a card for travelling overseas...been there done that.

    Airlines, trains, buses are now liable for injury resulting from transport of people intentionally unvaccinated. You want to travel in a confined space with others, well then cough up the documentation that you are not a risk.

    If you can be implicated in spreading a vaccinatable disease to someone else. Bam....liability. Pay for my pain and suffering, dumbass.

    This doesn't need to be government controlled. Let it be society controlled. the government does not need to enforce this stuff, just stop protecting it.

  • ||

    MikeP2|12.19.13 @ 4:17PM
    "I would propose that the simplest solution is to let the free market deal with it."

    And you'd be absolutely right!

  • ||

    If I catch flu or whatever, then blaming my flu for making you sick is nothing but a return to the miasma theory.

    Everybody's looking for somebody or something to blame for their own problems. Microbes are not the cause of illness, they are merely the agency.

    The cause of your own reality is your own spirit's need for that event to teach you what you need to know about living in 4-dimensional reality.

    For advanced metaphysics, visit http://www.godchannel.com . Start by visualizing a sphere whose center is everywhere and whose surface is nowhere.

    For Individual Liberty, vote Radical Libertarian Loon in 2016: http://rich_grise.tripod.com/cgi-bin/index.pl .

    Free Will is the highest possible good.

    Freedom is my Worship Word!

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