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  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 11:26pm

    Re: Re: Re: heheheheheheheheheherd Immunity!!!

    Really? You went with an article that chose measles as the counter-vaccination argument?

    A (not so)little light reading might be illuminating. In particular pay attention to the first (pre-vaccine)numbers listed compared to the (post-vaccine)numbers towards the end.

    TL:DR version: The numbers pre-vaccination are all sorts of nasty, so you'll excuse me if I'm not buying the 'vaccines are just a plot/don't work' arguments. Society has seen what happens without vaccinations and it's not pretty, yet that's what the anti-vaccination people seem to be pushing for, hence why they can get a rather hostile/dismissive reception at times.

    Secular Trends in the United States

    Before 1963, approximately 500,000 cases and 500 deaths were reported annually, with epidemic cycles every 2–3 years. However, the actual number of cases was estimated at 3–4 million annually. More than 50% of persons had measles by age 6, and more than 90% had measles by age 15. The highest incidence was among 5–9-year-olds, who generally accounted for more than 50% of reported cases.

    In the years following licensure of vaccine in 1963, the incidence of measles decreased by more than 95%, and 2–3-year epidemic cycles no longer occurred. Because of this success, a 1978 Measles Elimination Program set a goal to eliminate indigenous measles by October 1, 1982 (26,871 cases were reported in 1978). The 1982 elimination goal was not met, but in 1983, only 1,497 cases were reported (0.6 cases per 100,000 population), the lowest annual total ever reported up to that time.

    Measles Resurgence in 1989–1991

    From 1989 through 1991, a dramatic increase in reported measles cases occurred. During these 3 years a total of 55,622 cases were reported (18,193 in 1989; 27,786 in 1990; 9,643 in 1991). In addition to the increased number of cases, a change occurred in their age distribution. Prior to the resurgence, school-aged children had accounted for the largest proportion of reported cases. During the resurgence, 45% of all reported cases were in children younger than 5 years of age. In 1990, 48% of patients were in this age group, the first time that the proportion of cases in children younger than 5 years of age exceeded the proportion of cases in 5–19-year-olds (35%).

    Overall incidence rates were highest for Hispanics and blacks and lowest for non-Hispanic whites. Among children younger than 5 years of age, the incidence of measles among blacks and Hispanics was four to seven times higher than among non-Hispanic whites.

    A total of 123 measles-associated deaths were reported during this period (death-to-case ratio of 2.2 per 1,000 cases). Forty-nine percent of deaths were among children younger than 5 years of age. Ninety percent of fatal cases occurred among persons with no history of vaccination. Sixty-four deaths were reported in 1990, the largest annual number of deaths from measles since 1971.

    The most important cause of the measles resurgence of 1989–1991 was low vaccination coverage. Measles vaccine coverage was low in many cities, including some that experienced large outbreaks among preschool-aged children throughout the early to mid-1980s. Surveys in areas experiencing outbreaks among preschool-aged children indicated that as few as 50% of children had been vaccinated against measles by their second birthday, and that black and Hispanic children were less likely to be age-appropriately vaccinated than were white children.

    In addition, measles susceptibility of infants younger than 1 year of age may have increased. During the 1989–1991 measles resurgence, incidence rates for infants were more than twice as high as those in any other age group. The mothers of many infants who developed measles were young, and their measles immunity was most often due to vaccination rather than infection with wild virus. As a result, a smaller amount of antibody was transferred across the placenta to the fetus, compared with antibody transfer from mothers who had higher antibody titers resulting from wild-virus infection. The lower quantity of antibody resulted in immunity that waned more rapidly, making infants susceptible at a younger age than in the past.

    Measles Since 1993

    Reported cases of measles declined rapidly after the 1989–1991 resurgence. This decline was due primarily to intensive efforts to vaccinate preschool-aged children. Measles vaccination levels among 2-year-old children increased from 70% in 1990 to 91% in 1997.

    Since 1993, fewer than 500 cases have been reported annually, and fewer than 200 cases per year have been reported since 1997. A record low annual total of 37 cases was reported in 2004. Available epidemiologic and virologic data indicate that measles transmission in the United States has been interrupted. The majority of cases are now imported from other countries or linked to imported cases. Most imported cases originate in Asia and Europe and occur both among U.S. citizens traveling abroad and persons visiting the United States from other countries. An aggressive measles vaccination program by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has resulted in record low measles incidence in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the interruption of indigenous measles transmission in the Americas. Measles elimination from the Americas was achieved in 2002 and has been sustained since then, with only imported and importation-related measles cases occuring in the region.

    Source

    On to the flu.

    How the Flu Virus Can Change: “Drift” and “Shift”

    Influenza viruses are constantly changing. They can change in two different ways.

    One way they change is called “antigenic drift.” These are small changes in the genes of influenza viruses that happen continually over time as the virus replicates. These small genetic changes usually produce viruses that are pretty closely related to one another, which can be illustrated by their location close together on a phylogenetic tree. Viruses that are closely related to each other usually share the same antigenic properties and an immune system exposed to an similar virus will usually recognize it and respond. (This is sometimes called cross-protection.)

    But these small genetic changes can accumulate over time and result in viruses that are antigenically different (further away on the phylogenetic tree). When this happens, the body’s immune system may not recognize those viruses.

    This process works as follows: a person infected with a particular flu virus develops antibody against that virus. As antigenic changes accumulate, the antibodies created against the older viruses no longer recognize the “newer” virus, and the person can get sick again. Genetic changes that result in a virus with different antigenic properties is the main reason why people can get the flu more than one time. This is also why the flu vaccine composition must be reviewed each year, and updated as needed to keep up with evolving viruses.

    The other type of change is called “antigenic shift.” Antigenic shift is an abrupt, major change in the influenza A viruses, resulting in new hemagglutinin and/or new hemagglutinin and neuraminidase proteins in influenza viruses that infect humans. Shift results in a new influenza A subtype or a virus with a hemagglutinin or a hemagglutinin and neuraminidase combination that has emerged from an animal population that is so different from the same subtype in humans that most people do not have immunity to the new (e.g. novel) virus. Such a “shift” occurred in the spring of 2009, when an H1N1 virus with a new combination of genes emerged to infect people and quickly spread, causing a pandemic. When shift happens, most people have little or no protection against the new virus.

    While influenza viruses are changing by antigenic drift all the time, antigenic shift happens only occasionally. Type A viruses undergo both kinds of changes; influenza type B viruses change only by the more gradual process of antigenic drift.

    Source

    'Since the late 19th century, five occurrences of antigenic shifts have led to pandemics (1889–1891, 1918–1920, 1957–1958, 1968–1969, and 2009-2010). A pandemic may start from a single focus and spread along routes of travel. Typically, there are high attack rates involving all age groups, and mortality is usually markedly increased. Severity is generally not greater in the individual patient (except for the 1918–1919 strain), but because large numbers of persons are infected, the number, if not the proportion, of severe and fatal cases will be large. Onset may occur in any season of the year. Secondary and tertiary waves may occur up to 2 years later, usually in the winter.

    In April 2009, a novel influenza A(H1N1) virus appeared and quickly spread across North America. By May 2009 the virus had spread to many areas of the world. Influenza morbidity caused by 2009 pandemic H1N1 virus remained above seasonal baselines throughout spring and summer 2009 and was the cause of the first influenza pandemic since 1968.

    In the United States, the 2009 pandemic was characterized by a substantial increase in influenza activity in Spring 2009 that was well beyond seasonal norms. Influenza activity peaked in late October 2009, and returned to the seasonal baseline by January 2010. During this time, more than 99 percent of viruses characterized were the 2009 pandemic influenza A(H1N1) virus.

    In January 2011, CDC estimated that pandemic H1N1 influenza virus caused more than 60 million Americans to become ill, and led to more than 270,000 hospitalizations and 12,500 deaths. Ninety percent of hospitalizations and deaths occurred in persons younger than 65 years of age. With typical seasonal influenza approximately 90% of deaths occur in persons older than 65 years.

    (Pretty nasty right? Yeah, comparatively that was a walk in the park.)

    'The pandemic of “Spanish” influenza in 1918–1919 caused an estimated 21 million deaths worldwide. The first pandemic of the 21st century occurred in 2009–2010.'

    **

    For practical purposes, the duration of immunity following inactivated influenza vaccination is less than 1 year because of waning of vaccine-induced antibody and antigenic drift of circulating influenza viruses. Influenza vaccine efficacy varies by the similarity of the vaccine strain(s) to the circulating strain and the age and health status of the recipient. Vaccines are effective in protecting about 60% of healthy vaccinees younger than 65 years of age from illness when the vaccine strain is similar to the circulating strain. However, the vaccine is less effective in preventing illness among persons 65 years of age and older.

    Although the vaccine is not highly effective in preventing clinical illness among the elderly, it is effective in preventing complications and death. Some studies show that, among elderly persons, the vaccine is 50%–60% effective in preventing hospitalization and 80% effective in preventing death. During a 1982–1983 influenza outbreak in Genesee County, Michigan, unvaccinated nursing home residents were four times more likely to die than were vaccinated residents.

    Source

    What is the evidence that influenza vaccines work?

    (Ran out of comment space, use this link and click on the topic link to the right to see the numbers.)

  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 9:36am

    Missing the most important part

    The most perfect law in the world would be completely and utterly useless, nothing but a waste of paper and ink if there's no penalty in place for non-compliance.

    Sure you can write a law that makes it a legal requirement for the police to inform members of the public that they are absolutely within their rights to refuse a search, but that's meaningless if when they don't there's no punishment.

    You can write a law that makes it a legal requirement for police to respect the rights of the public, and bars them from abuse of power in any form, but you're just wasting your time if there's no penalty when they ignore the law and do so anyway.

    A law requiring that police inform the citizenry that they have rights and it's legal for them to exercise them is a nice thought, but it's skipping the biggest problem, where police are never held accountable for their actions and therefore have no reason to care about the laws(and in fact with 'good faith exception' they are motivated to know as little about the law as possible).

    Make them care about following the laws and then you can move on to writing up laws to curb abuse of power, before that you're just wasting time for nothing more than empty PR.

  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 9:29am

    Re:

    That's why it's just implied, not stated outright.

  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 9:28am

    Re: When did the TPP go public?

    According to the article she referred to it as 'the gold standard' in 2012, if memory serves the actual text was only made public last year, 2015, so either she was one of the very few non-industry that had access and saw nothing wrong with it, or she was just parroting the spin about it like a good little tool.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 6:09pm

    Tattered silk glove over iron fist

    I'm guessing this is a (laughably obvious) attempt to demonstrate that he can show 'mercy' to those that oppose him as well as brutality, an attempt to disguise his tyrannical, thuggish nature. That it comes at the same time as he's busy purging 'his' country of those that might have stood up to him makes it a pathetic attempt, but I suppose he figures no-one will be willing to stand up and call him on it at this point.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 4:24pm

    Choice vs Obligation

    You're saying that an American's civic duty includes: • Voting • Jury duty • Cooperating with police.

    My focus wasn't on the 'civic duty' part so much as the absurd idea thrown out by the police chief, but addressing your questions I'd probably say yes, yes and no respectively.

    The first two are (theoretically) how the public makes sure that the 'right' people are representing their interests and acting as a check against unjust laws and overzealous prosecutors who care more about convictions than seeing justice done, while the third has a chance to negate the first two if applied blindly or poorly.

    If someone chooses to be cooperative or helpful to police rather than the absolute minimum required that's up to them, but I don't feel in the slightest that it should ever be seen as an obligation or duty to do so, especially when it comes to actions that are violations of a person's rights. The police are intended to serve the public and society, not the other way around.

    If police want people to want to help them then they need to work on doing something about their toxic reputation, and the idea that people should feel obligated to help, even at the cost of their rights just because a cop feels like doing something isn't exactly helping that.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 3:54pm

    Re: there's a simple fix

    Personal responsibility?! For police?! Perish the thought, holding police personally accountable for their actions would be insane, and a completely uncalled for and unfair imposition! /poe

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 2:11pm

    Re:

    You only have one counterargument, and because it is quite flawed "it is not a human being" you have to put it in bold letters and act as if this answers everything.

    Because it does. The grounds for the lawsuit is copyright infringement, monkeys are legally incapable of owning a copyright, and the picture is in the public domain as a result, meaning there's no violation possible. As such the lawsuit is without merit.

    When the core concept behind a lawsuit is that flawed you don't really need to spend much time analyzing or considering the merits beyond that.

    When you say "The monkey has no fucking clue about the copyright" you have to give some proof for that assumption on your side, instead of trying to ridicule those who think differently.

    Umm, no, you've got the burden of proof dead backwards there. Monkeys not understanding copyright law in particular, or any law in general is, I would imagine, fairly well settled at this point.

    While certain legal antics can certainly seem to be done by monkeys it's generally accepted that there are few if any monkeys with the knowledge of law and/or copyright, so the idea that the monkey in question has no idea that any of this is occurring, and even less knowledge of what any of it means can be fairly safely assumed to be the default position.

    (That said I am absolutely open to a demonstration that the monkey in question understands the law in question and knowingly chose these particular lawyers to represent them in court, as such a demonstration would almost certainly be downright hilarious.)

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 1:41pm

    'Rights: Only applicable when they don't inconvenience the police'

    WATERBURY — Police Chief Vernon L. Riddick Jr. brought a message of cooperation with police to a mostly African-American crowd of more than 200 people at Mount Olive A.M.E. Zion Church on Wednesday night.

    If an officer stops your car, if they ask to search your person or vehicle, if they demand entry into your home, comply and then complain later to the department’s internal affairs office and police chief’s office if you feel your rights have been violated, Riddick said.


    Yeah, no. That argument/threat might make at least some sense if he was phrasing it as a matter of safety('You don't want to make the police mad, they can make your life all sorts of unpleasant/short purely on a whim.'), but 'cooperation'? Not even close.

    That's not 'cooperation', that's rolling over and letting your rights be violated, potentially screwing you over later on('The accused willingly let us perform the search, and as such any evidence found should not be suppressed.'), under the idea that (barring the police union) the two groups least interested in punishing police for violations will do something about it at some point down the line.

    It's amazing he can travel anywhere safely with blinders as large as the ones he seems to be wearing.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 1:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Make America Great Again

    At this point I'm pretty sure I'd take Cthulhu over the current possibilities, as at least he(it?) is honest.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 12:17pm

    Re: Who owns the pictures when a camera trap is used?

    This again?

    I'm really hoping this is an honest question by someone who's not read the previous articles on the subject, and in case it is...

    A camera trap is specifically set up to take pictures under certain conditions, conditions decided on and created by a human(in other words someone capable of owning a copyright), meaning the human involved has at least some creative input over the picture. The camera is positioned at this position, pointed in this direction, and so on.

    In this case however there was no 'creative input' on the part of a human at all. Slater, by his own words(originally, before he realized the impact of them), screwed up and left a very valuable piece of equipment in reach of several monkeys. Thanks to a high amount of luck on his part they ended up taking a bunch of pictures rather than taking the camera and/or smashing it to pieces, but by no stretch was he involved in the creation of the pictures, meaning no one capable of owning a copyright had any creative input in the creation of the pictures, hence no copyright.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 5:36am

    Re: Re:

    If the white hats don't find it the black hats will, and if the white hats are scared off from reporting by threats of what happens to anyone who exposes system/security vulnerabilities then the first a company is likely to learn about a vulnerability is when someone exploits it maliciously, rather than just for research/investigation purposes.

  • Jul 29th, 2016 @ 2:40am

    Re: Re: fast track?

    What is the difference, apart from more hot air on the Hill?

    'All or nothing', which is what is comes down to with FTA makes it much harder to kill off an 'agreement' without a politician opening themselves up to a PR nightmare as their opponents pick out the few good bits and use the fact that they voted against the entire thing against them.

    "They didn't vote against it because of the 'Kick an orphan every tuesday' clause, they voted against improving the economy and increasing jobs."

    Crap to be sure, but effective crap given most politicians think first and foremost about maintaining their position, now and in the future. If that means voting for kicking a few orphans in order to be able to boast about how much they care about jobs, so be it.

    'No' as a protest vote sounds all well and good, but on something like this there is enormous pressure to pass it from those that bought it and those in office who want to use it for PR/'legacy' purposes, no matter how many toxic clauses are scattered inside, and FTA means they don't even have a chance to do something about those clauses.

    Or put another way, politicians are an inherently lazy lot, they wouldn't have spent nearly as much time and effort pushing for FTA if the difference between having it and not having it was that negligible.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 2:36pm

    Re: fast track?

    As far as I know FTA will remain in place two years into the next presidential term, with the possibility of one(or more) 'extensions' after that.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 1:51pm

    Re: An open query

    The problem comes about because diseases, like any other organism have the capacity to mutate/evolve, but if they are 'killed on sight' as it were by a body already prepared for them via vaccination then they don't really have the chance to do so.

    An un-vaccinated host on the other hand gives the disease time to stick around and potentially mutate, to the point where there's a chance that a vaccination against a particular strain won't work against the 'new' strain, leaving everyone right back at square one.

    There's also herd immunity and protecting those that legitimately can't be vaccinated for one reason or another, meaning their only defense is to have those around them act as a buffer. They don't get sick because those surrounding them can't get sick basically, a protection that goes away when those around them don't vaccinate, leaving holes in the buffer that a disease can slip through.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 12:55pm

    'I'm not terrible at A, I'm terrible at B!'

    So he'd rather be known as someone willing to share private patient info just to cover his own ass than someone who doesn't pay enough attention to his patients?

    Brilliant.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 12:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The future is easy to tell, just look at history.

    Awesome, so you should have no problem whatsoever telling me ahead of time which promises a given politician will and will not uphold, what they'll do should they be elected that differs from what they claimed they would do, how the influence of the system will affect their actions in specific way and so on.

    It gets repeated with people like you.

    Oh by all means, feel free to explain just what kind of person you think I am that leads you to make such a statement.

    You hate the fact that I am right about citizens never being blameless and attack the messenger.

    Nice strawman there, make sure to keep it away from open flames.

    Citizens have some blame, but when the system itself is corrupt barring extreme actions there's only so much that can be done, with 'vote better next time' coming in towards the bottom of the list.

    I am just informing those looking to escape blame, that there is no escape.

    No, you seem to be more interested in shifting the blame from those that actually do something to a group for not being able to tell the future, and who are working with an extremely corrupt system that makes changing things just a wee bit more difficult than 'Vote for the right person next time'.

    But I can say with 100% certainty that politicians are blamed too much.

    Complete and total crap. It doesn't matter if people aren't voting in the 'right' people, politicians are still responsible for their own actions, unless you are going to claim that somehow the public is forcing them to screw over the public for personal gain? You seem to have no problem blaming the public for not being held responsible for their actions, while putting for the idea that politicians aren't responsible for their actions.

    For all the claims of personal responsibility on the part of the public you sure don't seem to think that politicians should be held to much if any.

    What manner or sanity is this? To abdicate your responsibilities while simultaneously holding others to theirs!

    Like, oh I dunno, saying that people get the government they deserve, ignoring the question of how the citizens are to blame when the politicians lie and act contrary to how they claimed they would act? How the citizens are to blame when the government lies to them and hides it's actions, and it basically requires a whistleblower willing to sacrifice their career and often liberty for the public to know what's being done by their own government?

    No really, continue to blame the citizens for not being able to tell the future and not being informed when they've been deliberately kept in the dark.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 11:46am

    Re: Interesting "charitable" behavior

    Corporations really have to learn that they don't own the world without even bothering to keep up their part of the deal.

    The problem is that they have learned, in particular they've learned that if you have enough money and/or the right connections you can pretty much do whatever you want without repercussions, and at most you might have to throw some sod to the wolves and pretend to be so very sorry that you got caught doing something.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 11:43am

    Re: Re: 'Please hold all apluase until after the high-court treatment is handed out.'

    There will be a settlement with confidential terms. It will still set up a model for other litigants but at least not for other judges.

    Ah right, can't believe I forgot about the ultimate 'Get out of unwanted precedent' ploy of settlements.

    Company does something that might get them into hot water.
    Someone takes them to court over the matter.
    Rather than risk a ruling that might be actually damaging and/or set a precedent they don't like, they throw money at the problem and watch it disappear.
    And like that, ruling and precedent avoided, and all it took was some pocket change.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 11:10am

    Re: Re: This means its legal to do the same

    A 'guided tour' of the facility I imagine, for a nice little 'chat' regarding your actions.

    The FBI, much like many other government agents/agencies operates under a 'One rule for me, another for thee' mindset, meaning just because they've been given the clear to bug public areas to listen in to conversations of members of the public it doesn't mean they would accept anyone doing the same to them.

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