On this episode of the Holistic Survival Show, Jason and Louise Kuo Habakus discuss the human right to vaccination choice, the ethics and constitutionality of vaccination mandates, and what parents should do regarding vaccinating their children. More at: http://HolisticSurvival.com/category/audio-podcast/. Louise Kuo Habakus, M.A. and Mary Holland, J.D. co-edited the “Vaccine Epidemic: How Corporate Greed, Biased Science, and Coercive Government Threaten Our Human Rights, Our Health, and Our Children.” The book features more than 20 experts from the fields of ethics, law, science, medicine, business, and history, and is a call for reform. According to the research, nearly all Americans receive vaccines. “The federal government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently recommends 70 doses of sixteen different vaccines between birth and age eighteen, and all fifty states mandate between 30 and 45 doses of vaccines for admission to day care and school.” Public health officials tell us that vaccines are safe and effective, but there is far more to the story. Louise and Mary introduce a diverse array of interrelated topics concerning the vaccine controversy, building the case that it’s your right – not the government’s – to decide whether to vaccinate yourself or your children.
Louise Kuo Habakus is the director and cofounder of the Center for Personal Rights. She was a managing director for Putnam Investments, a corporate vice president for Prudential Financial, and a consultant with Bain & Company. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University, where she also received a graduate degree in international policy studies. In her advocacy work, she lectures and writes frequently and has appeared in numerous media outlets, including ABC World News Tonight, Fox & Friends, and the New York Times.
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Start of Interview with Louise Kuo Habakus
Jason Hartman: It’s my pleasure to welcome Louise Kuo Habakus to the show. She is the founder of the Center for personal rights. And they deal with vaccination issues and vaccination rights. And I think you’ll find this to be a very interesting topic which we have not covered on this show before. Louise, welcome.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Thank you. I’m delighted to be here.
Jason Hartman: Well, our pleasure to have you. Tell us how you came to get involved in this area. I’m assuming maybe a child and a school vaccination issue or something?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Well, I am a parent and so that is part of it and I have young children. And so I’ve been watching and seeing how many children are receiving vaccines, starting within a few hours of birth. And so there’s the side that is a very personal side. But equally importantly, it’s my professional experience that has informed the need for this book which I think is critically important.
I come from industry. I’m a former senior corporate executive. I used to run marketing for Putnam Investments. I was a corporate vice president for Prudential. And so I understand how companies work. I understand what they solve to in terms of a bottom line and how compartmentalized sometimes policy can be. And so putting these two perspectives together, it made me want to look at this issue as something that is positioned so differently in the media than is the reality of parents today. And by that I mean that in the media, you really hear about how this is parents against the science, right? That this movement is really anti-vaccine. And so what I like to do when talking is first to start out by saying I’m not anti-vaccine. I’m not remotely anti-vaccine. In fact, I’m as anti-vaccine as a doctor would be pro vaccine injury – it’s ludicrous.
So what I would say is that this movement is mainstream, it’s parental but it’s increasingly professional. And there are a lot of important questions.
Jason Hartman: So babies are vaccinated within just a few hours of being born?
Louise Kuo Habakus: They are.
Jason Hartman: And polio, what else?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Well, Hepatitis B, the sexually transmitted disease, the vaccine is given within hours of birth, usually the very first day of life. And that’s pretty extraordinary, because if you think about it how many newborn babies are engaging in high risk activity that would involve IV drug use or sexual promiscuity?
Jason Hartman: Hopefully none, that’s for sure.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Hopefully none. But I think that is a question that we need to be asking, is if you look at Hepatitis B or if you look at varicella for chicken pox or the flu. There are a number of shots where you say these diseases don’t really affect very young children, and so all vaccines aren’t the same. All diseases are not deadly and they don’t affect children at the same rate. Let’s start looking at them. Let’s start getting underneath sort of this universal policy and asking is there more that meets the eye?
Jason Hartman: So let me just make sure I understand your position. And I like the fact, Louise, that you said you are not even remotely anti-vaccine because I think a lot of people in this space are. Now are you just saying the vaccinations are done without choice, they’re done too soon, right after birth, they’re unnecessary, or it’s just a profit mode of the vaccine companies. What’s sort of the angle there if you could go a little deeper on it?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Absolutely. Well, you know, most people don’t realize unless they have young children that it’s no shots, no school. And really that expands to no shots, no daycare, and no shots, no preschool. So the first thing is that here’s something that is a medical intervention, it’s serious, it can protect against disease, but it also can ruin lives. And by that, what I mean is that it’s not disputed that some people are injured and die after vaccination. It’s legally classified. The product of legally classified is unavoidably unsafe. And it is a really important risk benefit calculation that needs to be made, vaccine by vaccine, disease by disease, and individual by individual because not everybody has the same risk profile. Not everybody has the same set of travel plans and behaviors and even where they live and how they sort of navigate in society.
And so these are questions that parents need to be asking. When we go into the pediatricians office, what we hear is this is the way it’s done, you must get all the shots as scheduled, this is what’s recommended by the federal government, and to go against this recommendation puts your child at risk and puts society at risk. And I think that people are smarter than this. They understand that when you start looking underneath this that there are important questions that are raised.
Jason Hartman: Sure. So what are some of the vaccine safety problems? Do you believe that the vaccines cause autism? Tell us about some of those connections if you would.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Absolutely. So chapter 7 of my book is about the science. And what it does is it summarizes the state of current vaccine safety science today. And there is new peer reviewed research that has emerged in the last handful of years to 3 years that isn’t discussed in the mainstream media. And that’s something that when I do my work I bring it to people’s attention because we are pro science and we advocate more science.
So, for example, there was a meta-analysis that was published by Catherine DeSoto from the University of Northern Iowa. It came out in 2010. And what she does is she reviews. She does a pub med literature search and identifies almost 100 studies that are related to environmental toxicity, heavy metals in particular, and autism or developmental delay. And she discovered that about 2/3 of those studies bear on this question of causation does vaccination or vaccine ingredients cause autism for example. And what she has found is by reviewing the detailed study that the weight of the scientific evidence has shifted and there is an emerging consensus that vaccination is associated with developmental delay and autism. There’s another study that looks at hepatitis B neo-natal vaccination and developmental delay by Goodman and Gallagher of Stonybrook University, also within the last couple of years, and they find that children, boys in particular, who receive the hepatitis B vaccination, the series of 3 shots, they are associated with an 8.63 times higher rate of special needs of having a learning disability or being classified as special needs.
Now, those are just two studies. There are others that need to be looked at and discussed. And these are things that are hard to do in a sound bite world. But I find that what happens is people read the headlines. And so what they’ll read is that vaccine found not to cause autism. And that’s what was in all of the mainstream publications in 2004 when the Institute of Medicine released its 2004 recommendation or conclusion. And what the IOM said, and the IOM is a private think tank organization that advises the federal government on health issues, and they concluded that there is no evidence of a causal association between vaccines and autism. And I think what’s important for people to understand is no evidence of a causation is not the same as evidence of no causation.
Jason Hartman: Right. Very, very good point. Do you think there’s a real movement? I hate to use the word because they’re so marginalized, but a conspiracy, if you will, to suppress this evidence to just make money for the pharmaceutical companies that are producing vaccines or is it may be less subversive than that?
Louise Kuo Habakus: I don’t think there’s a conspiracy, but I hate the word because it makes it sound like people are sort of deviously rubbing their hands together and saying, okay, let’s see what we can do to further this misinformation program. And I don’t think that’s the case at all. But I don’t think there has to be a conspiracy to have the same outcome. And what I mean is that I believe that people are essentially well-intentioned. And I think that most people, doctors included, believe that vaccines are a life-saving medical intervention. And that is what they’re taught in medical school. And so it’s interesting, if you ask a doctor, including a pediatrician, how much they study vaccination in medical school, what they’ll tell you is they’ll spend a day or less. And what they learn is what the shots are, how to give them, and how to catch them up, how to catch people up if they don’t get them on schedule. And so you’re not getting a lot of information about new research, what’s in them, the mechanism of vaccine injury, the impact of the immune system overall. And then once you become a doctor, a lot of the materials actually come from the pharmaceutical firms themselves. So I think that what you need to do is you need to look at the system and in particular what we highlight, which I think is important, is the legal system.
Back in 1986, what happened was a lot of vaccine makers went to congress and they said we’re getting sued and we’re paying multi-million dollar settlements to families whose children suffered massive brain damage and death following vaccination. And they said you’ve got to protect us because, if you don’t, we’re not gonna be able to make these shots anymore. And so what Congress said was “Oh my gosh. This is so important to the public health that we have to shield the pharmaceutical industry.” Now, that was one response.
Jason Hartman: I mean how shielded were they? Certainly, they have some liability. I mean they’re not completely immune to suit, are they?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Well, families of the vaccine injured have no access to the civil courts and you’re not part of the court system anymore. So if you are injured or die after vaccination, your family estate must go to a special administrative program. And this program has no judge, no jury, and no normal rules of discovery that are permitted in a real court. And so the idea was that this administrative program was supposed to be streamlines – make it a lot easier for people to get compensated.
But what happened is the number of vaccines have exponentially increased since this law, right? What they said was if your vaccine was on the schedule, then the company has no legal liability to make safer vaccines, that you are protected. And so it has resulted in a dramatic departure that the US has had with all the other first world countries that here we are mandating in school shots like the chicken pox vaccine and the flu vaccine in New Jersey and the Human Papilloma Gardasil cervical cancer vaccine in the state of Virginia. And so what we’re finding is that there’s a really dramatic rise. And that’s why we call the book Vaccine Epidemic. It’s a provocative title. And we’re not saying that vaccines are the same as deadly diseases. But what we’re saying is that the increase in the number of vaccines is widespread, prevalent, and unprecedented in human history, that they are epidemic. So we use it as an adjective.
And so we’re trying to grab your attention in saying there’s been a threefold increase in the number of shots children get today. What’s going on?
Jason Hartman: Threefold since when?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Since the last 25 years.
Jason Hartman: Wow. And so is your position (you’re certainly not anti-vaccine as you mentioned) that all of these vaccines are necessary but maybe later or 2/3 of them just aren’t necessary at all or where do you fall on that? Or do you just not know and you’re drawing attention to the problem? I mean are there particular vaccines that you think are just inappropriate, should not be used.
Louise Kuo Habakus: So I’m not a doctor and that’s why I wrote chapter 24 in the book “What Should Parents Do?” because as a parent I understand how really difficult this is because that question you asked me, I’m asked all the time. And I’m not allowed to give medical advice. And even if I was, I wouldn’t give it anyway. And so what I do in the chapter is I review, I summarize 8 advice books on this subject to expand the gamut. And what’s very interesting if you read them, you’ve got one book that covers the government position that you should get all 70 doses at 16 vaccine all the way to another doctor on the other end of the spectrum that says you shouldn’t give any, right? And then there’s a lot of doctors in between that sort of pick and choose and tell you which ones they think are the critical vaccines. And they don’t all agree. And you’ll see, as you’re reading this, is that there are a lot of issues that are involved in thinking about vaccination. So some doctors recommend an alternative schedule so that you spread them out and you’ll go more slowly. And some have an alternative schedule for all the shots but you can spread them out, and some have some that they leave out that they say are more discretionary and not as urgent
Some doctors say don’t get more than one live virus vaccine at once or only one aluminum containing vaccine at once. So there are a lot of different issues that I think when people read this they say “Well, wow, I didn’t know that there was aluminum in vaccines.”
Jason Hartman: Neither did I until you just mentioned it.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Why is it in there? How much is that? Because we know that aluminum is neurotoxic and it’s potentially very damaging. So I guess the answer to your question is I don’t believe in one size fits all medicine. And when you look at vaccination, vaccine policy is recommended, their mandates, to protect society. And they say that you need herd immunity – large numbers of people need to be vaccinated or else these diseases will come back.
And what I want to say is that vaccines are temporary in their immunity. They wane. Right now we have the children in this country are the only segment of the population that’s mandated to receive these numbers of vaccines. And we have the whole burden of societal herd immunity on these little children’s shoulders. And so at the level of the parents making a decision for the child, what I say is you need to put your child’s health first. You’re not upholding the public health first. Your responsibility or moral obligation is to your child.
So understand which vaccines you’re choosing and why. Understand the risks of getting them on both pro and con and make active decisions. And there are resources out there to help you. So you’re not entirely on your own. There are a lot of books. There are a lot of organizations that have come up that can support parents in this. So you don’t have to become a doctor in order to make this.
Jason Hartman: Let me take a brief pause. We’ll be back in just a minute.
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Jason Hartman: What are the other options to parents, though? Chapter 20 is forced child removal. And I assume you’re talking about schools, preschool, etcetera, day care. What are the other options for parents? I mean are vaccination requirements for public schools a federally mandated thing? Is that a nationwide problem? Or can you move to a different district, say, or a private school or a home schooling? What kind of options are there for parents there?
Louise Kuo Habakus: So let me just address your question about forced child removal. That’s actually involving child protective services.
Jason Hartman: Oh, okay.
Louise Kuo Habakus: And that’s when parents who don’t vaccinate, for example, and other things too, are accused of medical neglect and their children are removed from them. So it’s a pretty draconian issue.
Jason Hartman: That’s very draconian. Was that like a particular vaccine? How would Child Protective Services even know? Would the doctor report the parent for not getting the vaccine?
Louise Kuo Habakus: That is one circumstance. And certainly there are doctors who report families. But really anybody can make an anonymous call to child protective services.
Jason Hartman: So that would mean that the parent would have to have told somebody.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Yes. Or, again, the doctor even in a privileged kind of relationship with sharing that kind of private information could do so. But that’s right, that’s right.
Jason Hartman: Was Child Protective Services removing for a particular vaccine?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Well, what’s happening is we’re seeing that Child Protective Services are getting involved for a variety of issues where they’re determining that there’s a medical neglect. So a vaccination of a number of different vaccines, I mean parents may not wish to give all of them or they may not wish to give any of them. And so it could be selective or not at all. And so there isn’t a particular vaccine that’s uniformly involved, but additionally what’s happening is that there are a number of children with autism spectrum disorder in this country. So 1% of all American children are diagnosed with autism and much higher rates for boys in particular. 4 out 5 autistic children are boys.
So a number of parents are pursuing biomedical treatment. And what they’re saying is that autism isn’t just a mental condition, but actually they’re medically ill. They have inflammatory bowel disease, they have brain inflammation, they have high levels of mercury and other environmental toxins in their bodies. And so these parents are pursuing treatments that are regarded as unorthodox by mainstream medicine and a number of doctors are saying “You know what, I don’t know how to treat your child’s autism, but what you’re doing is not right”, that it’s not proven by orthodox medicine. And they report the children to Child Protective Services.
And what I just want to say to that there’s a chapter in the book about biomedical recovery of autism, that there’s a lot that’s coming out that shows that children who had been previously diagnosed with autism are losing their diagnoses because of treatments that they’re doing to support their bodies and actually addressing the symptoms and the disorders that they have, including, for example, gastrointestinal problems.
But I want to get back to your question about how this works at the state or federal level. States mandate vaccines as a requirement for school admission. And so every state is different in terms of which vaccines they mandate. I live in New Jersey. New Jersey mandates the most shots as any state in the country. All 50 states are mandating shots, it’s just how many. And so the issue then comes to, well, if you don’t want to give all the shots, or if you don’t want to give any – but mostly parents are vaccinating, so it’s selective vaccination – then they say how can I legally and legitimately avoid certain vaccines?
And there are 20 states in the country that permit what’s called a philosophical or a personal beliefs exemption. And what that means is that you can have just any deeply held belief, conscientious informed belief against a vaccine or all vaccines and you are entitled to be exempt from the state mandate. But there are only 20 states. So in New Jersey, for example, it does not have a philosophical exemption. And there is religious exemption, which New Jersey and 48 states in total have, and so parents in these states can say that they have a deeply held religious belief that’s violated by vaccination. The problem, though, is that if you take a religious exemption, in essence you’re saying that you have difficulty, religious conflict with all vaccination, right? Unless you’re catholic and you have a problem, let’s say, with aborted fetal tissue, or you’re Jewish and you have a problem with the porcine gelatin that comes from pigs in vaccines, most people who take a religious exemption really are technically saying that they have a problem with vaccination, the intervention as a whole. And so parents in these states are really compelled to choose all or none. And so, interestingly, by not giving choice, which most legislators and public health officials in these states think that if you don’t give choice, more people will vaccinate because they can’t say no. But what’s happening is that when you put a gun to the parent’s heads and if they’re really, really worried about certain vaccines, then the way that they get out of it is by choosing none.
Jason Hartman: Scary. That’s probably too far to the extreme, isn’t it?
Louise Kuo Habakus: So what we try to tell people is that the very best medicine is when you allow parents to work with their health care providers to make individual educated choices. And if you talk to a lot of doctors, they will say let me work with my patients and the parents of the patients because I can talk through their concerns. I can explain to them what I think, the doctor, and how best to protect their children, and what makes sense, and answer specific questions without having it be coercive, state policy and coercive medicine.
Jason Hartman: I have no doubt that the AMA and the FDA are two cartels that have their own agendas and so forth. I had an interesting guest on a prior show, constitutional lawyer who has sued the FDA several times and there’s a lot of conflict of interest going on, as they are in any human organization with power and so forth.
Louise, we’ve got to wrap up soon, but I’d like to ask you, for the book, did you do any research on what happens in other countries? I mean I know some countries model our system to some extent. What goes on with this vaccination stuff around the world? Do you know? Are there any good examples out there?
Louise Kuo Habakus: I love that you asked this question, and I think it’s very important because I alluded to this that in 1986, when we passed that law, essentially shielding Pharma, what we found is that in the United States there was a dramatic departure from our first world peers. So if you look at the top 30 countries, first world countries, you’ll see that when it came to the bread and butter vaccines that we know, Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, polio, and measles, mumps, and rubella, we were all in sync. And then what happened was we passed this law, we protected Pharma for those vaccines that went on the recommended schedule, and suddenly all these new vaccines were added to the schedule. And these are vaccines that are not routinely as recommended or mandated in these first world countries – so chicken pox, rotavirus which is diarrhea, influenza which is extremely controversial. A lot of adults won’t get that vaccine for themselves. Human papilloma virus, hepatitis A and B, the meningococcal shot. So I think it’s very instructive to see how other countries handle vaccination.
In Japan, for example, just recently there were four deaths associated with two vaccines and they pulled those vaccines from the market.
Jason Hartman: Wow. They were acting maybe more responsibly, huh?
Louise Kuo Habakus: Yeah. And we don’t do that. We actually say, well, there’s no proof that it was a vaccine.
Jason Hartman: Interesting. Well, the website is CenterForPersonalRights.org. And you have a book. Of course, people can get that on Amazon and so forth. Any particular areas that people should go on the website? What are you looking for to help your cause? Tell us a little bit about it.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Thank you for asking. Yes, what we’re asking people to do is buy the book. And we’re saying that buying this book is an act of advocacy because these are perspectives that you won’t hear in the mainstream media that help you to understand why there’s so much concern about vaccination, that these are important views that are not being reflected.
So we have a special website for the book. It’s called VaccineEpidemic.com. And it’s available on Amazon and in book stores. And we’re asking people to buy the book or ask their libraries to order it, and just read the first 10 pages. And I think, for most people, once you see the perspective that is very responsible and measured, we’re not fringe, we’re not freaks, we’re not advocating crazy wild things, we’re saying that we understand that we all want the same things – we want healthy society, we want healthy children, and we want good policy, informed by science and ethics. And there’s something for everyone in the book. There are some very scholarly kinds of articles, there’s stories, personal stories that everybody can relate to. So we encourage people to read it. We think it’s an important contribution to this discussion.
Jason Hartman: Fantastic. And I should mention on Amazon, you’ve got a lot of reviews, 4 and a half stars and 212 likes as well, and it’s in the Kindle edition also. So if you’re Kindle or ebook readers, you can get it that way as well. Louise, thank you so much for this insight today, appreciate having you on the show and hearing about the vaccine epidemic. I really appreciate it. There’s some scary stuff going on out there and it’s good to be informed, that’s for sure.
Louise Kuo Habakus: Thank you so much. It’s been a pleasure. I appreciate it.
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Transcribed by Ralph
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