A Hard Dark Winter, Even in Summer: Reading the Fine Print By Brian Simpson

So, the big news on the Coviddy scene is that there are apparently super cool rock and roll vaccines that will solve the problem, whatever the problem is, so long as you have well, maybe multiple injections, and what are a few injections between friends?  Sure, trendy folks, mostly women and soy boys, wanting to conform, will no doubt be having injection parties, soap operas will have injection themes, and while statutes of everyone white are pulled down, new statues of syringes, will be erected. But, as noted in today’s articles, there are a few problems for the new religion of Coviddy:


“Pfizer recently announced that its covid vaccine was more than 90 percent “effective” at preventing covid-19. Shortly after this announcement, Moderna announced that its covid vaccine was 94.5 percent “effective” at preventing covid-19. Unlike the flu vaccine, which is one shot, both covid vaccines require two shots given three to four weeks apart. Hidden toward the end of both announcements, were the definitions of “effective.”

Both trials have a treatment group that received the vaccine and a control group that did not. All the trial subjects were covid negative prior to the start of the trial. The analysis for both trials was performed when a target number of “cases” were reached. “Cases” were defined by positive polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing. There was no information about the cycle number for the PCR tests. There was no information about whether the “cases” had symptoms or not. There was no information about hospitalizations or deaths. The Pfizer study had 43,538 participants and was analyzed after 164 cases. So, roughly 150 out 21,750 participants (less than 0.7 percent) became PCR positive in the control group and about one-tenth that number in the vaccine group became PCR positive. The Moderna trial had 30,000 participants. There were 95 “cases” in the 15,000 control participants (about 0.6 percent) and 5 “cases” in the 15,000 vaccine participants (about one-twentieth of 0.6 percent). The “efficacy” figures quoted in these announcements are odds ratios.

There is no evidence, yet, that the vaccine prevented any hospitalizations or any deaths. The Moderna announcement claimed that eleven cases in the control group were “severe” disease, but “severe” was not defined. If there were any hospitalizations or deaths in either group, the public has not been told. When the risks of an event are small, odds ratios can be misleading about absolute risk. A more meaningful measure of efficacy would be the number to vaccinate to prevent one hospitalization or one death. Those numbers are not available. An estimate of the number to treat from the Moderna trial to prevent a single “case” would be fifteen thousand vaccinations to prevent ninety “cases” or 167 vaccinations per “case” prevented which does not sound nearly as good as 94.5 percent effective. The publicists working for pharmaceutical companies are very smart people. If there were a reduction in mortality from these vaccines, that information would be in the first paragraph of the announcement.

There is no information about how long any protective benefit from the vaccine would persist. Antibody response following covid-19 appears to be short lived. Based on what we know, the covid vaccine may require two shots every three to six months to be protective. The more shots required, the greater the risk of side effects from sensitization to the vaccine.

There is no information about safety. None. Government agencies like the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) appear to have two completely different standards for attributing deaths to covid-19 and attributing side effects to covid vaccines. If these vaccines are approved, as they likely will be, the first group to be vaccinated will be the beta testers. I am employed by a university-based medical center that is a referral center for the West Texas region. My colleagues include resident physicians and faculty physicians who work with covid patients on a daily basis. I have asked a number of my colleagues whether they will be first in line for the new vaccine. I have yet to hear any of my colleagues respond affirmatively. The reasons for hesitancy are that the uncertainties about safety exceed what they perceive to be a small benefit. In other words, my colleagues would prefer to take their chances with covid rather than beta test the vaccine. Many of my colleagues want to see the safety data after a year of use before getting vaccinated; these colleagues are concerned about possible autoimmune side effects that may not appear for months after vaccination.”

Hey, that all sounds fine; I better get my butt, or wherever they shove the needles ready, eh? Nothing to worry about here.



“Fevers, sweats, migraines and muscle aches that last for days - these are just some of the symptoms reported by various 'Phase 3' trial participants who volunteered for the vaccine trials run by Pfizer, Moderna and others. Though AstraZeneca noted in its preliminary results that its vaccine (which uses the more traditional adenovirus vector) seemed to produce side effects that are less severe than some of its competitors.

As scientists try to ensure the US reaches a 70%+ vaccination rate (the cut-off point at which herd immunity is believed to kick in) a group of doctors just warned that public health officials and drugmakers need to be "transparent" with patients about the potential side effects of vaccination, and ensure precautions are taken to ensure patients don't skip their follow-up visit.

This is a top concern for Dr. Sandra Fryhofer of the American Medical Association, who warned that the side effects might deter many of her patients from receiving the follow-up shot. Dr. Fryhofer expressed her concerns during a virtual meeting on Monday with the CDC and representatives from various vaccine makers

"We really need to make patients aware that this is not going to be a walk in the park," Fryhofer said during a virtual meeting with the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, or ACIP, an outside group of medical experts that advise the CDC. She is also a liaison to the committee. "They are going to know they had a vaccine. They are probably not going to feel wonderful. But they've got to come back for that second dose."

What, it is not going to be a walk in the park!? Well, we have been locked down for so long, with the jackboots of the state upon our necks, so that “we can’t breathe,” does anyone even know what a park is now? Or even what walking is? Just ask people in the UK who are going to face Biden’s deep dark winter, something out of Game of Thrones, only more sinister. Sure, metaphorical winter is coming, even for those of us in the southern hemisphere, melting in summer:


“Lockdowns won’t end until anticipated vaccines “come to our aid” in the future and the country can expect a “hard winter”, the Prime Minister has said, as the government’s science advisor warned it is quite possible the coronavirus will simply mutate to outperform vaccinations.

Speaking at the Downing Street press conference hours after the details of the new post-lockdown-lockdown were revealed to the country, Prime Minister Boris Johnson made clear to the nation that there was no reasonable hope of lockdown ending soon, saying merely that there was “reason to hope” that spring would see an end of “this era of restrictions”.

Given the United Kingdom’s regime of lockdowns began in March 2020, it stands to reason that the Prime Minister’s remarks confirm that the nation’s lockdown will be in place with varying degrees of intensity for at least a full calendar year.

As England emerges from the so-called second lockdown running into early December and heads straight into tighter-than-before tiered regional lockdowns, the Prime Minister also teased that things stand to get worse before they improve. Johnson said: “to get there we must first navigate a hard winter, when the burden on our NHS is heaviest, and cold weather favours the virus… If we ease off now, we risk losing control all over again.”

Ultimately, Mr Johnson said, perpetual lockdown would do nothing but “suppress” the coronavirus until a vaccine comes “to our aid”.

Yet subsequent comments by the science experts flanking the Prime Minister at Thursday’s conference made clear that the arrival of a vaccine would not necessarily herald the end of Covid-19 as repeat vaccinations may, in the eyes of the government, be required in return for allowing society to re-establish itself.

Speaking after the PM, Patrick Vallance said of the propensity of viruses to mutate for their own survival: “it is possible that as the vaccines work, and they put pressures on the virus, that the virus mutates and other forms arise that would require new vaccines in due course. So, I don’t think it is the case that the vaccines we have now will be the ones we have forever, we may have to get new ones”.

Thus, there will be lockdowns, and when the vaccines are rolled out on the red carpet, repeat vaccines, maybe forever. Big Pharma must be rubbing its scaly  hands, with glee.




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Thursday, 18 July 2024

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