[extropy-chat] Are vaccinations useless?

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Mon Mar 13 19:20:18 UTC 2006

On 3/11/06, Robin Hanson <rhanson at gmu.edu> wrote:
> At 03:15 AM 3/11/2006, Hal Finney wrote:
> > > I believe it is up to the proponent of a new hypothesis to show that
> > > their idea covers the relevant observations before the new hypothesis
> > > is worth much scrutiny from others. ...
> >
> >Consider the question of whether advances in health and longevity are
> >largely due or are not due to medicine.  Should we use the common-sense
> >answer of yes, and demand that someone who argues otherwise take up
> >the burden of proof?  Or should we use the accepted answer in the public
> >health field of no, and demand that proponents of medicine's effectiveness
> >prove it?
> To elaborate, the answer of no is not only the accepted answer in public
> health, it is also the accepted answer in the economics of health, and in the
> sociology of health.   It is only some in medicine who say otherwise.
> I am not a lone crank trying to prove an odd hypothesis - I am just a bearer
> of news about the academic consensus.

### As we seem to drift from the specific question of vaccine efficacy
towards more general issues, and confusion about which consensus is
meant could ensue, let me just say that there is absolutely no
consensus whatsoever as to the uselessness of vaccines, to the
contrary, there is consensus that they do reduce morbidity and save

Regarding the consensus that Robin is alluding to, I need to ask what
is meant: Do you mean there is consensus among public health
scientists, sociologists, and economists that medicine is largely
useless? Point me to some position papers and recent reviews in
reputable journals, please. Strangely, in all my years of contact with
medicine, you are the only person I met who is trying to prove this


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