Vaccine Injury Reporting System Broken, New JFK Assassination Evidence, Microplastic Solutions
Revealing News Articles
November 28, 2023
Explore below key excerpts of revealing news articles on indications that the U.S. Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is broken, new evidence pointing to a second shooter in the JFK assassination, pesticides contributing to declining sperm counts all over the world, and more.
In our independent media section, don't miss articles on a Connecticut city rejecting 5G wireless installations over health concerns and U.S. regulators warning nutrition influencers to stop misleading their followers about their industry ties.
Read also wonderfully inspiring articles on synthetic sponges that clean up microplastics, the European Union's ban on microplastic additives, a woman's dying wish to erase the medical debts of strangers, and more. You can also skip to this section now.
Each excerpt is taken verbatim from the major media website listed at the link provided. If any link fails, see this page. The most important sentences are highlighted. And don't miss the "What you can do" section below the summaries. By educating ourselves and spreading the word, we can and will build a brighter future.
Quote of the week: The medical profession is being bought by the pharmaceutical industry, not only in terms of the practice of medicine, but also in terms of teaching and research. The academic institutions of this country are allowing themselves to be the paid agents of the pharmaceutical industry. I think it's disgraceful. ~~ Arnold Seymour Relman, Harvard Professor of Medicine & Former Editor-in-Chief of the New England Medical Journal
Video of the week: Given that serious questions are being raised about the story behind the assassination of John F. Kennedy, explore our excellent and free video archive on his assassination, which features videos from The History Channel, NBC, and more.
Is the US’s Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System broken?
November 10, 2023, The BMJ (Formerly British Medical Journal)
The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) ... collects reports of symptoms, diagnoses, hospital admissions, and deaths after vaccination. VAERS is supposed to be user friendly, responsive, and transparent. However, investigations by The BMJ have uncovered that it’s not meeting its own standards. Not only have staffing levels failed to keep pace with the unprecedented number of reports since the rollout of covid vaccines but there are signs that the system is overwhelmed. In the face of an unprecedented 1.7 million reports since the rollout of covid vaccines, VAERS’s staffing was likely not commensurate with the demands of reviewing the serious reports submitted, including reports of death. While other countries have acknowledged deaths that were “likely” or “probably” related to mRNA vaccination, the CDC—which says that it has reviewed nearly 20,000 preliminary reports of death using VAERS (far more than other countries)—has not acknowledged a single death linked to mRNA vaccines. In November 2022, React19, an advocacy group of some 30,000 people who have experienced prolonged illness after covid vaccination, reviewed 126 VAERS reports among its ranks. 22% had never been given a permanent VAERS ID number and 12% had disappeared from the system entirely. The BMJ has found that the FDA and CDC essentially maintain two separate VAERS databases: a public facing database, containing only initial reports; and a private, back end system containing all updates and corrections—such as a formal diagnosis, recovery, or death.
Note: Vaccine adverse event numbers on VAERS are made publically available here, and only capture a portion of the actual vaccine injuries. Albert Benavides is a VAERS researcher who recently wrote a comprehensive Substack piece investigating the corruption and dysfunction of the VAERS system, including how the VAERS system even deleted dead Pfizer Trial patients. Another excellent article explores these concerning implications from the perspective of cardiologists, physicians, and science researchers.
JFK’s Parkland Doctors Come Forward: Oswald Didn’t Act Alone
November 13, 2023, Rolling Stone
This year marks the 60th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. JFK: What the Doctors Saw [is] a documentary featuring previously unreleased footage — and the testimony of seven doctors who were there in the emergency room of Parkland Hospital trying to save the then-president’s life after he was shot as his motorcade passed through Dealey Plaza on Nov. 22, 1963. The film raises serious doubts about whether Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in killing JFK (Oswald was shot to death two days later by local nightclub owner Jack Ruby as he was escorted through the Dallas Police building). “I became involved with the story because one of my personal physicians told me he was in the emergency room at Parkland Hospital when JFK was brought in,” Jacque Lueth, the film’s executive producer who interviewed the seven Parkland doctors, [said]. “He introduced me to six of the other doctors who were there that day and when I interviewed them, I began to realize their observations from Trauma Room 1 didn’t match the government story.” She adds, “Based upon my interviews with the doctors, Jim Jenkins and Robert Tanenbaum, and my own research, there’s no question in my mind there was a government cover-up.” The doctors in the film contend one of the bullets that hit JFK entered through his throat, meaning it was an entrance wound from the front — and that there were potentially two gunmen, with Oswald firing from the rear.
Common pesticides in food reducing sperm count worldwide, study says
November 15, 2023, CNN News
Pesticides used in our homes, gardens and lawns and sprayed on foods we eat are contributing to a dramatic decline in sperm count among men worldwide, according to a new analysis of studies over the last 50 years. “Over the course of 50 years, sperm concentration has fallen about 50% around the world,” said senior study author Melissa Perry. “While there are likely many more contributing causes, our study demonstrates a strong association between two common insecticides —organophosphates and N-methyl carbamates — and the decline of sperm concentration.” Organophosphates are the main components of nerve gas, herbicides, pesticides and insecticides and are also used to create plastics and solvents. They are widely used in agriculture on the crops we eat. We use them in structural applications within homes and buildings. N-methyl carbamates are structurally and operationally similar to organophosphates, killing insects by damaging their brains and nervous systems. The study, published ... in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, examined 25 studies around the world on the two chemicals. Those studies looked at 42 different levels of impact among 1,774 men in 21 different study populations. Men who were more highly exposed to the pesticides, such as those who work in agriculture, had significantly less sperm concentration than men who had the least exposure to organophosphates and N-methyl carbamates, the study found.
Court tosses EPA ban on pesticide linked to brain damage in kids
November 2, 2023, The Hill
A federal appeals court on Thursday is tossing the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ban on a pesticide that has been linked to brain damage in children. The decision from the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals to send the rule back to the agency does not preclude the agency from reinstating the ban in the future. But it said the EPA needs to give greater consideration to whether there are cases where the pesticide, called chlorpyrifos, could be used safely. Chlorpyrifos has been used as an insecticide, protecting crops like soybeans, broccoli, cauliflower and fruit trees. The EPA banned chlorpyrifos for use in growing food in 2021. That came after a prior court ruling gave the agency just 60 days to either find a safe use for chlorpyrifos or ban it outright. The appeals court determined that this deadline contributed to a rushed decision from EPA that was ultimately “arbitrary and capricious.” The ruling comes from Judges Lavenski Smith, Raymond Gruender and David Stras, two of whom were appointed by former President George W. Bush and one of whom was appointed by former President Trump. The chlorpyrifos issue has ping-ponged between administrations. The Obama administration had proposed to ban its use on food, but the Trump administration reversed course and had proposed to allow some uses of the chemical.
Note: Did you know that chlorpyrifos was originally developed by Nazis during World War II for use as a nerve gas? Read more about the history and politics of chlorpyrifos, and how U.S. regulators relied on falsified data to allow its use for years. See other concise news articles we've summarized about the harms of chlorpyrifos.
EU Commission to extend use of glyphosate for 10 more years after member countries fail to agree
November 17, 2023, Nature
The European Commission says it has decided to renew the license for the weedkiller compound glyphosate, approving its use in European Union countries for ten more years. Following the decision yesterday, the Commission released a statement saying that, on the basis of comprehensive safety assessments carried out by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), it would renew the licence, “subject to certain new conditions and restrictions”. These include a ban on the use of the chemical to dry crops before harvest, and “the need for certain measures to protect non-target organisms”. Governments can still restrict the use of glyphosate in their own countries if they consider the risks too high. Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Roundup, the world’s most widely used herbicide. Some studies point to a link between glyphosate and certain cancers. Robin Mesnage, a toxicologist at King’s College London, welcomes the Commission’s decision to continue to allow the use of glyphosate. Others have expressed disappointment. “It is unacceptable that the Commission still plans to go ahead with its proposal, considering the amount of scientific evidence of the substance’s health impacts,” says Natacha Cingotti, a campaigner at the Health and Environment Alliance. “While we can’t undo the decades of exposure, the Commission can still seize the opportunity to turn the tide towards more sustainable agricultural practices.”
UN hunger expert: US must recognize ‘right to food’ to fix broken system
November 9, 2023, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
The US must acknowledge the right to food in order to transform its broken food system in the post-pandemic era and make it more resilient in the face of the climate crisis and biodiversity loss, according to a United Nations hunger expert. “Whether we’re talking about right to food, food justice or food sovereignty, there has been growing momentum over the last 10 years to understand that food is not just something we just leave to be determined by what is available or by corporations or the status quo,” said Michael Fakhri, the UN special rapporteur on the right to food. Last month, Fakhri presented a report on the right to food – which would entail that adequate food be available and accessible to all people – as a means of food system recovery and transformation to the UN general assembly. The right to food, which can also be characterized as a right to culturally appropriate nutrition that a person needs to live a healthy and active life, is recognized in the UN’s 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and is enshrined in the 1966 International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. In 2021, the US and Israel were the only countries to vote against a United Nations committee’s draft that asserted food as a human right. The draft also expressed alarm that the number of people lacking access to adequate food rose by 320 million to 2.4 billion in 2020 – nearly one-third of the world’s population. In 2022, 44.2 million people in the US lived in food-insecure households.
Nearly half of American adults faced medical bill issues in last year – survey
November 16, 2023, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
High-income Americans are almost as likely to defer healthcare because of cost as people with low or average incomes in eight other developed countries, a new survey brief by the Commonwealth Fund finds. The survey findings also show that nearly half of American adults (46%) faced a problem with a medical bill in the last year, and almost half with low or average incomes (46%) skipped or delayed needed care because of price – the highest rate in any of nine countries analyzed. “In some cases, lower-income people in other countries are better off than higher-income Americans,” said Munira Gunja, lead author of the study. Decades of research shows the US health system is both wildly expensive and inefficient. Internationally, it has been seen as a kind of "bogeyman" and as a way not to structure a health system, according to the late Princeton University health economist Uwe Reinhardt. A staggering 18% of US GDP goes to healthcare spending, the highest in the world, and the logical result of the highest healthcare prices of any nation. Despite runaway spending, Americans also have among the worst outcomes. Recent work by population researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University, found US life expectancy has slipped for decades and now ranks 46th among 200 nations. The US is also the only nation surveyed without guaranteed universal health coverage for every citizen.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.
The Covid Vaccine Windfall Turns for Pfizer and Moderna
November 20, 2023, Wall Street Journal
The U.S. was in a fit of Covid panic during Thanksgiving week two years ago. By month’s end, Pfizer’s stock-market value had surpassed $300 billion, up 50% from the start of the pandemic. Moderna’s shares had soared by more than 1,000% over the same period. In 2022 Pfizer became the first pharmaceutical company to book more than $100 billion in annual sales owing to government purchases of its vaccines and antiviral pill. Fast-forward to today. The pandemic is over. Demand for Covid vaccines and treatments has plunged. Pfizer’s total revenue has fallen more than 40% since last year. Earlier this month the company took a $5.5 billion write-off on its Covid products owing to “lower-than-expected demand.” Only 14% of American adults have received the latest updated booster shots. The jabs’ greatest benefit was in providing political leaders with the courage to lift destructive lockdowns and mask mandates. The vaccines were supposed to be a two-shot-and-done regimen, not blockbuster medicines that rung up tens of billions of dollars in sales every year with government support. Statins and diabetes medicines prevent heart attacks, but the government doesn’t run ads urging Americans to use Lipitor or Ozempic. The government’s vaccine boosterism ... has increased public cynicism toward pharmaceutical companies. Drug makers can dine out on any given medicine only for so long before needing to cook up another pharmaceutical bonanza.
Key Articles From Independent Media
Connecticut City Rejects 5G Citing Evidence of Health Risks
November 20, 2023, The Defender
The Board of Representatives in Stamford, Connecticut, earlier this month voted to reject a model agreement that would have allowed AT&T and Verizon to install 5G equipment on city-owned utility poles. In a bid to get 5G swiftly installed in his state, Gov. Ned Lamont’s office created a template contract between the nation’s top two telecommunication carriers and the state’s five major cities. Stamford, the state’s second-largest city, is the only city so far to have voted against using the contract. [City] representatives were largely persuaded by presentations by six independent experts on the scientific evidence of harm from radiofrequency (RF) radiation, including 5G. The experts, including toxicologist and epidemiologist Devra Davis, Ph.D., MPH, said there were many documented health and environmental impacts of wireless radiation, including brain damage, memory loss, decline in reproductive function, DNA damage and harm to insects. “Confronted with overwhelming, independent scientific information about the real and present dangers of bringing electromagnetic fields closer to humans than ever before, Stamford voted to protect people,” [said Davis]. Some representatives, like City Rep. Don Mays, worried that rejecting the pact would mean AT&T and Verizon would sue the city. A 2018 ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) blocks states and municipalities from taking actions that would impede or delay the rollout of 5G technology.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies from reliable major media sources.
US regulator cracks down on food industry for paid dietitian ‘influencer’ posts
November 15, 2023, The Examination
Federal regulators announced warnings against two major food and beverage industry groups and a dozen nutrition influencers on Wednesday, as part of a broad action to enforce stricter standards for how companies and social media creators disclose paid advertising. The Federal Trade Commission sent warning letters on Monday to American Beverage, a lobbying group whose members include Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, as well as the Canadian Sugar Institute and a dozen health influencers who collectively have over 6 million followers on TikTok and Instagram. The agency flagged nearly three dozen social media posts that it said failed to clearly disclose who was paying the influencers to promote artificial sweeteners or sugary foods. The action follows a months-long investigation by The Examination and The Washington Post that revealed how the food and beverage industry had enlisted popular dietitians to promote industry-friendly messages on social media posts that often failed to disclose the names of sponsors. Social media marketing ... has been described as the Wild West of advertising. Over $6 billion is expected to be spent on influencer marketing in the United States in 2023. The enforcement action is the first the FTC has taken against major food and beverage industry groups for social media marketing. The agency urged the trade groups and nutrition influencers to remove posts or add proper disclosures and noted that future failures could trigger fines of more than $50,000 for each violation.
Note: Read how cereal giant Kellogg used fake experts to sell its sugary cereals. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.
Key Articles From Years Past
A dangerous dose
September 5, 2004, Boston Globe
read on boston.com
Marcia Angell [is] a faculty member at the Harvard Medical School [and one of the] former editors of The New England Journal of Medicine. Her new book, "The Truth About the Drug Companies," is a sober, clear-eyed attack on the excesses of drug company power. How does the drug industry deceive us? It plies attending physicians with expense-paid junkets to St. Croix and Key West, Fla., where they are given honoraria and consulting fees to listen to promotional presentations. It promotes new or little-known diseases such as "social anxiety disorder" and "premenstrual dysphoric disorder" as a way of selling the drugs that treat them. It sets up phony front groups disguised as "patient advocacy organizations." It hires ghostwriters to produce misleading scientific articles and then pays academic physicians to sign on as authors. It sends paid lackeys and shills out onto the academic lecture circuit to ''educate" doctors about a drug's unapproved uses. It hires multinational PR firms to trumpet dubious studies as scientific breakthroughs while burying the studies that are likely to harm sales. It buys up the results of publicly funded research. It maintains a political chokehold on the American public by donating more money to political campaigns than any other industry in the country. For many years the drug industry has reaped the highest profit margins of any industry in America. In 2002, the top 10 American drug companies had profit margins of 17 percent; Pfizer, the largest, had profit margins of 26 percent. So staggeringly profitable is the drug industry that in 2002 the combined profits for the top 10 drug companies in the Fortune 500 were greater than those of all the other 490 companies combined.
Scientists Have Created Synthetic Sponges That Soak Up Microplastics
October 5, 2023, Smithsonian Magazine
For millennia, humans have used dried natural sponges to clean up, to paint and as vessels to consume fluids like water or honey. Whether synthetic or natural, sponges are great at ensnaring tiny particles in their many pores. And, as scientists around the world are beginning to show, sponges’ cavity-filled forms mean they could provide a solution to one of our era’s biggest scourges: microplastic pollution. In August, researchers in China published a study describing their development of a synthetic sponge that makes short work of microscopic plastic debris. In tests, the researchers show that when a specially prepared plastic-filled solution is pushed through one of their sponges, the sponge can remove both microplastics and even smaller nanoplastics from the liquid. Optimal conditions allowed the researchers to remove as much as 90 percent of the microplastics. The plastic-gobbling sponges are made mostly from starch and gelatin. Looking a bit like large white marshmallows, the biodegradable sponges are so light that balancing one atop a flower leaves the plant’s petals upright and unyielding, which the researchers suggest ought to make them cheap and easy to transport. The sponges, if ever produced at an industrial scale ... could be used in wastewater treatment plants to filter microplastics out of the water or in food production facilities to decontaminate water. It would also be possible to use microplastic-trapping sponges like this in washing machines.
Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.
The EU Just Banned Microplastics. How Are Companies Replacing Them?
November 16, 2023, Reasons to be Cheerful
Microplastics — solid plastic particles up to five millimeters in size that are not biodegradable — are pretty much everywhere. They have been detected in over 1,500 different marine animal species. They also find their way into our bodies via the water cycle and the food chain. In fact, the average person consumes up to five grams of microplastics per week. The European Union has now banned intentionally added microplastics. This applies to plastic glitter or polyethylene particles used as abrasives in scrubs, shower gel and toothpaste (these have been banned in the US since the 2015 Microbead-Free Waters Act). Under the terms of the ban, some products, such as plastic glitter found in creams or eye shadow, have been granted a transitional period to give manufacturers a chance to develop new designs. LUSH and The Body Shop are among the companies that have long been offering natural alternatives, using ground nuts, bamboo, sea salt and sugar. Beiersdorf AG ... has not used microbeads for exfoliation purposes since 2015. Instead, it has used, for example, cellulose particles or shredded apricot kernels. Since the end of 2019, all Beiersdorf wash-off products have been free of microplastics. Before the EU ban, Germany stopped providing public funding for artificial turf pitches with granules containing a high proportion of microplastic. As a result, the country already has hundreds of pitches that are filled with cork and sand instead of microplastics.
Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.
US cancer patient's dying wish erases $16m in people's medical debt
November 17, 2023, BBC News
A New York City woman who died of ovarian cancer has raised enough money to pay off millions of dollars in other people's medical debts. In a social media post she arranged to be posted after her death, Casey McIntyre, 38, asked followers to consider donating to her cause. She said she planned to pay off other people's medical debt as a way of celebrating her life. She wrote on social media: "if you're reading this I have passed away." "I loved each and every one of you with my whole heart and I promise you, I knew how deeply I was loved... to celebrate my life, I've arranged to buy up others' medical debt and then destroy the debt." She added that she was lucky to have access to high-quality medical care while battling stage four ovarian cancer and wanted others to have the same. McIntyre and her family ... raised over $170,000 (£136,000) for her campaign with non-profit RIP Medical Debt. The organisation pays off a dollar of medical debt for every penny that is donated, meaning McIntyre's campaign has helped erase up to $17m in unpaid medical bills. The organisation says it buys medical debt "in bundled portfolios, millions of dollars at a time at a fraction of the original cost". "On average, whatever you donate has 100x the impact," it says on its website. In the social media post announcing her own death, McIntyre's family included a note that they would have a memorial service ... where they would celebrate her life by anonymously purchasing and forgiving other's medical debt.
Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.
Microplastic pollution: Plants could be the answer
August 16, 2023, University of British Columbia
Could plants be the answer to the looming threat of microplastic pollution? Scientists at UBC’s BioProducts Institute found that if you add tannins—natural plant compounds that make your mouth pucker if you bite into an unripe fruit—to a layer of wood dust, you can create a filter that traps virtually all microplastic particles present in water. While the experiment remains a lab set-up at this stage, the team is convinced that the solution can be scaled up easily and inexpensively. For their study, the team analyzed microparticles released from popular tea bags made of polypropylene. They found that their method (they’re calling it “bioCap”) trapped from 95.2 per cent to as much as 99.9 per cent of plastic particles in a column of water, depending on plastic type. When tested in mouse models, the process was proved to prevent the accumulation of microplastics in the organs. Dr. Rojas, a professor in the departments of wood science, chemical and biological engineering, and chemistry at UBC, adds that it’s difficult to capture all the different kinds of microplastics in a solution, as they come in different sizes, shapes and electrical charges. “There are microfibres from clothing, microbeads from cleansers and soaps, and foams and pellets from utensils, containers and packaging. By taking advantage of the different molecular interactions around tannic acids, our bioCap solution was able to remove virtually all of these different microplastic types.”
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