Court Ordered Vaccination & SMH False Balance

Ordered to have VaccineRecently (January 15, 2011) printed  in the Sun Herald was the article on the left; the article was about a 5-year-old girl who was ordered to be vaccination after the mother refused to do so – citing evidence that was criticised  by the Judge as “outlandish statements unsupported by any empirical evidence”.

Now, what I’m focusing on here is how the journalist, Holly Ife, decided to present an issue as being balanced in opposing viewpoints, which isn’t what the evidence actually supports.

Was she trying to AVOID bias, or was she trying to SENSATIONALISE the article?

Leading one of the final paragraphs with a contentious “However,” and following it up with a quote from a paediatric chiropractor; namely Dr. Warren Sipser, gives the impression that this bloke has some knowledge or authority on the matter and should be given credence.

He doesn’t, and shouldn’t.

He is a quack, and a dangerous quack at that.

Two Opposing Viewpoints

Sipser is quoted in the article as saying that it’s “dangerous to impose [immunisation] on anyone when there are two opposing viewpoints” – he even went on to say “there is credible evidence they may do more harm than good”.

First off, there is always someone in opposition to a viewpoint. Even today there are people so delusional that they believe the earth is flat; and even today, there are people who believe in magical hand-waving, spine cracking “healing”. To say because there are opposing viewpoints that we shouldn’t do anything is ridiculous. While people may have opposing viewpoints the EVIDENCE doesn’t. The OVERALL EVIDENCE empirically demonstrates that immunisation IS a good thing, and is NOT doing more harm than good.

What Sipser calls credible are articles that come to the conclusions that best align with his beliefs.

Where as I, I call things credible when researchers use excellent scientific methodology that controls against bias through double & triple blind trials, where those results are not just replicated by a number of other independent researchers, but the research is critically examined for faults by a number of peers and finally published in a journal with integrity.

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The Shocking Rort by NSW Labor

http://bit.ly/bJcNom

When Federal Labor announced their Emissions Trading Scheme, Electricity Companies took it upon themselves to start charging consumers more based on the cost of building new infrastructure and were part of the proposed Carbon Tax.

Since then, Labor has been beaten back by Federal liberal and the public about the impact of a Carbon Tax on all facets of life for “Working Families”.

Now that Kevin Rudd has been disposed of by the ALP, Labor has been retracting on it’s “greatest moral challenge” and attempting to make the ETS a matter for a Public Forum.

NSW Labor however, have stripped $11bn from Electrical infrastructure; which is now being used as the excused to FURTHER pump up the price of Globe Juice.

Change needs to happen.
Sooner the better.

Starting the Change in NSW

Earlier today, I twittered with Barry O’Farrell regarding my issues for NSW. Given I only have 140 letters to express this, I mentioned:

1. Traffic & Resource Infrastructure
2. Government Land Release
3. Health (Mental Care & Hospitals)

Of course, the Liberal NSW Leader agreed, and directed me to a website of his – “startthechange.com.au”

I checked it out.

The Liberal/Nationals have 5 Top Priorities, but from the policies listed, I have commented on those I feel are more pressing.

A Strong Economy

Government Land Release

Housing in NSW is unaffordable for the majority of Australians, let alone those in our state. NSW is taking in a large number of migrants, and our roads are feeling the squeeze. An ever growing population has not been serviced by a Government that has squandered Billions in Taxpayer funds.

Large land releases allow developers to increase availability in the market. This increase will lead to another construction boom in NSW, we will once again become a productive state.

However, this MUST be backed up by a serious look at not only our transportation infrastructure, but issues such as Water, Electricity, and Gas.

To do this, NSW needs to look to new technology trends to help increase the viability of these houses becoming homes. This isn’t a matter of Climate Change, but are reasonable decisions to be made about being environmentally concious.

Mandatory installation of Solar Heating, Water Tanks, or insulation in particular dwelling types are some of the initiatives NSW can take to support our local manufacturers, promote a environmentally conscious stance, and decrease dependence on current infrastructure that will inevitability take time to plan and build.

Taxes

Remove certain taxes, like stamp duty to stimulate the economy and encourage greater uptake of building and developing opportunities.

More for the frontline
Justice

My policy trademark for Policing would be: “Less Writing, More Road.” Police need to see Police on the Beat, walking around with the community to build-up areas and patrolling those less congested.
However, what our justice system really lacks are Magistrates that are in touch with the community’s values. Too many people are let off because of a ‘Shortage’ of cells. Well – Build. A. Gaol.
Education

The Education focus is excellent; increased literacy and numeracy skills undeniably will enable more young people to be employable.

Hospitals. Sigh.
I would love to say a lot of money needs to be thrown at hospitals for overhauls – but I know this is not a viable option. An introduction of on-site GP’s at all hospitals that would benefit. Even 1-2 would increase efficiency of the Emergency Ward.

This state needs more nurses and doctors. That’s what it comes down to. No point in opening beds if there is no room.

Better public transport, roads

Roads and Railways

This is part and parcel to a strong economy, the express flow of traffic, both of people and goods increases productivity and reduces stress, and will probably reduce road rage rates.

Key infrastructure needs to be implemented asap with quick service provision a priority. Staged building of these roads for a later link-up may provide short-term relief for key areas while the link-ups are built.

I would also expect a greater emphasis on a hub approach of commercial and industrial communities, rather than having only a handful of key cities where roads are carparks. – This is thankfully mentioned by the Liberals, as encouraging decentralisation.

I would also like to see a review of key intersections are roadways that are generally congested, and that review panel to work with the local community to create a viable solution. Again, quicker travel times increases productivity and reduces costs.

Accountable government

Given that for 14 years Labor has been able to spend so much and provide so little, personal accountability of those involved should be sought.

A reform of Electoral Finance Laws is greatly warranted; included the capping of lobby groups and ‘other parties’.

I would also be happy for salaries to rise for NSW MPs, provided that a complete removal of ‘benefits’, etc was imposed.

Ministers should be well paid for the job they do for the State, provided they deliver. If they aren’t – The Premier should have the grace to acknowledge the individual was not competent at the job, and call in a new Minister.

There are “Government” resources that can be used for all official business; if they need it – sure; if it’s a personal issue – I’m sure they can provide for their own. I would believe this change would bring about a public respect, in that ministers would be seen as paying for their own – just as the general public does.

Give planning to communities

The policies listed for this point are excellent and sensible.

Planning Laws require rewriting;
An Energy Buy-Back scheme should be introduced; and
The opposition to compulsorily acquire family homes (it should never have been brought up in the first place.)

I would hope that the Buy-Back scheme would not affect the income tax, and perhaps capped reasonably to prevent rorting of the system. Mainly those with excess panels

Well, their my first impressions of the campaign – let’s see how it goes.