Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Can you keep a secret?

"Three can keep a secret if two are dead."
-Benjamin Franklin

How many people can really keep a secret? I mean really keep a secret. Not utter it out loud, not write about it, not bitch about it over beers, but really and truly keep it a total and utter secret, safe from the world? I think I can keep a secret. My wife claims that I keep more secrets than almost anyone she knows.

Several years ago I was shopping for a Christmas gift for my then-girlfriend. I had flown in from out of town to visit with her and her family, so I was totally without a vehicle or any form of transportation.

She had recently gotten into photography in a semi-serious way, and I wanted to buy her an SLR camera for Christmas, but I didn't have the means to get to a camera store. So I arranged with her that we would go shopping with her parents' car, and I would blindfold her a few blocks from the store, and she agreed she would keep her eyes closed (she liked surprises far more than I did) while I went shopping. It was truly a convoluted plan, and in retrospect it was doomed to failure from the start. So that morning, we were ready to head out, and I was making a verbal list of all the things she and I were going to do that day. "Go to the movies, go get a present for my brother, go for lunch with your friends, go buy your camera...." Doh. I had blurted it out, just like that. I realized immediately what I had done, and I looked at my girlfriend in horror. She just smiled and said, "I thought that's what you were getting me."

Secrets have a way of coming out, even if you've never shared them. But what about when more than one person knows that secret? How hard is it to keep? I spent some time last night looking through PsychInfo for research on the difficulty (or ease) of keeping a secret. I confess I was unsuccessful (that said, I have a hard time imagining an ethical experiment that could test how well the average person keeps a secret). Most of the literature focuses on how damaging to one's psyche keeping a family secret can be.

So let's merely think about this, and I'll pose a few more questions. Could you keep a secret about yourself? What about if that secret is one that actually affects other people? For example, what if you harbor a secret about someone who is poisoning their wife? Could you keep that a secret? Do you know ten people you could share this with that would keep a poisoning secret? What about 10,000?

At the heart of most denialism is the need for there to be a conspiracy. For example, if mercury does in fact cause autism, tens of thousands of scientists would have to know this and be keeping it secret. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. claims that the CDC and the pharmaceutical industry have conspired to keep the dangers of mercury a secret. They would have to be complicit in a scheme to poison millions of children.

So how is it exactly that one gathers together a football stadium worth of people, reveal to them a secret that is so grotesque as that of poisoning millions of children, and then demand that they all keep it a secret?



ERV said...

hehehe I think this is the appropriate post for this TAG!

Warning in advance-- we dont keep secrets. :P

Chuck said...

The doctors knew of the toxicity of mercury when they invented Thimerosal. That very toxicity is the only reason it is a bactericide. The number of vaccines containing Thimerosal and the vaccination rate was small but growing from 1930 until 1980. From 1980 to now the number of required vaccines in the US has tripled. More people with more exposure equated to increased rates of autism. With this new increasing rate, the APA knew their diagnosis criteria was inadequate, and so revised the criteria to the current DSM-IV, which is still inadequate. Doctors only became more aware because there were more cases to be aware of.

Doctors can be trained to be more aware of an illness that only effects 1:1,000,000. After the training if the rate is correct, most doctors will forget the training because they will never see a case in their career. If the rate does change after becoming more aware, that is just proof that doctors in the past were inept at diagnosing the illness or that the current criteria is poorly designed, or both.

It is easy for this to be kept a “secrete” as you put it. Doctor’s accepted the vaccines and are fed incomplete information from the manufacturer or fails to ask or research the medication. Doctor’s schedule appointments and are paid for these appointments. Patients gullibly trust their doctors and fail to ask questions.

Many people have been gullibly lead into so called camps and then gassed to death and it was kept a secrete by more then 25,000. It was called The Holocaust. Maybe that is just another Conspiracy though.

The Factician said...

The New York Times first reported on the holocaust in 1942. 1942. This was at a time that Germany was at war with the U.S. (and I imagine it was difficult to move information across enemy lines).

German violence against Jewish people was commonly known in the 1930s. There are literally tons of documents showing the German administration of the holocaust. I'm not sure that's an example you want to use to demonstrate how easy it is to keep a secret. Though many Germans in the government and in towns near to the death camps claimed not to know, this is almost certainly not true.

Chuck said...

"Germans in the government and in towns near to the death camps claimed not to know"

Doctors claim not to know about vaccines

Same situation, different problem

The Factician said...

Only in your head, Chuck. You're doing a grave disservice to victims of the holocaust to compare a non-existent mercury poisoning scheme with the easily verifiable murder of millions of Jews.

Where are the tons of documents showing the mercury poisoning scheme, Chuck? Where is the proof of complicity of tens of thousands of doctors? It is not enough to make assertions, Chuck. One must have proof. That is the point of this post. One cannot merely assert there is a secret being held by thousands of people. I correct myself. Clearly one can make that assertion. I can make the assertion that elves live in my garden, and that the FBI is covering it up. But without proof, one starts to sound a bit unbalanced.

Chuck said...

“Where are the tons of documents showing the mercury poisoning scheme, Chuck?”

They are called MSD sheets, maybe you should read them.

“Where is the proof of complicity of tens of thousands of doctors?”

Where are the studies prior to 1999 showing that the combination of all new added vaccines, additives, or interactions between vaccines wasn’t dangerous?

Maybe you have heard of the term “Asleep at the switch”?

Where is the medical procedure to measure toxic exposure that isn’t in the bloodstream?

Where are the physiological and biological studies to disprove the dangers?

Chuck said...

Oh forgot one more thing

Why DID the other countries remove Thimerosal before the US if it wasn't a problem?

The Factician said...

Sorry, I don't have time to debunk every statement in your last two comments. But I thought I would use this one as an example:

They are called MSD sheets

From the MSDS of thimerosal:

lowest published lethal dose for a child: 60mg/kg

Let's assume a child who weighs 5 lb. That's a reasonably small newborn (but larger than a preemie). For that child to receive a toxic dose, one would need to inject 136 mg of thimerosal into her.

Given that the highest concentration of thimerosal in a vaccine is 0.01%

that means, she'd need to have an injection of 1.4 L of vaccine (nearly half a gallon). I dare say that if you injected that much of anything into a small child you'd kill her.

Is that the data you say supports children being poisoned by vaccines?

For more info:

Chuck said...

In your example, how many qualified doctors diagnoses dead children with an ASD disorder? That sounds a bit unbalanced.

Admittedly all children who receive 1.4 L of vaccine would also qualify for a ASD diagnosis posthumously.

Chuck said...

Pregnant women are highly recommended to get the ineffective flu shot. Since less then 5% are thimerosal free, most pregnant women will be injecting 26 mg. If the child is 1 lb or less and exposed to the full amount, it could reach lethal concentration, if not, it will just be neurologically messed up. Smarrrt!

The Factician said...

Please, Chuck. I beg you.

Stop lying.

26 mg of thimerosal in a vaccine is equivalent to 1/4 of a liter of vaccine being pumped into a pregnant woman. 250mL. That's a full coffee cup of vaccine.

But for the sake of argument, let's imagine this scenario that you've created: a pregnant woman receives a full coffee cup of vaccine using some kind of enormous elephant syringe...

In that case, if she is a very small woman (100lb) she is receiving a dose of 0.6 mg/kg. Her unborn fetus is receiving a similar dose (0.6 mg/kg).

That's 120 x lower than the lethal dose. That's if she receives a cup of vaccine.

In actual fact, she would receive 0.5 mL of vaccine. So she is receiving 60,000x lower than a lethal dose. This has never been associated in any credible study with any ill effects to the child.

Please. If you're going to argue, at least use facts that are true. Don't make stuff up.

Chuck said...

Thank God. Now I see how all your calculations are incorrect. All measurements of Thimerosal are in MICROGRAMS, not MILLIGRAMS, so all of your measurements are 1000 times bigger then they should be.

I don't know the correct scientific abbreviation for micrograms.

Chuck said...

26 mcg/0.5 ml is the Thimerosal content in the Flu vaccine

Chuck said...

I ASSUMED your abbreviation of mg was correct for mcg. Now that I know to not assume I will have to verify everything you say before I respond.

The Factician said...


Notation for micrograms= μg
Notation for milligrams= mg

Hope this helps,