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Stories Dooming Vaccine Hopes Overlook Immunity’s Complexity in Search of Easy Clicks

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/07/24/stories-dooming-vaccine-hopes-overlook-immunitys-complexity-search-easy-clicks

For anyone interested in educating themselves about a potential COVID19 vaccine, or vaccines in general, I would strongly suggest watching the debate that occurred between environmental attorney Robert Kennedy Jr. and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz this week. You can find it here: ~https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfnJi7yLKgE&feature=youtu.be&eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=df0005d4-baa1-4b43-bfec-9b501d394300


Oh for goodness’ sake – Julie Hollar is on terribly thin ice accusing a veteran pro like Peter Fimrite of the Chronicle of sloppiness. His story is tardy. There has been discussion of discouraging news for natural immunity to COVID-19 in a range of studies, from around the world, without any of it surfacing in a USA newspaper until now – the point of the article being an explanation of USF’s decision to emphasize research into therapies over research into vaccines. That’s a practical question – not “clickbait” at all.

I’ll remember this piece of strange fluff from Hollar – as if certain truths should not be uttered because certain people might find certain truths discouraging. That way lies madness. The truth is what matters first, secondarily we can worry about ignoring nuisances like Hollar who prefer obfuscation.

I’ve been linking this terribly portentous overview from TheScientist for awhile, about the lack of any hope for a vaccine, essentially, because there’s no evidence of natural immunity. If there isn’t a natural immunity, we’ll not be able to artificially stimulate some other kind of immunity – it means the quest for a vaccine is “chasing rainbows” – as one epidemiologist put it:



I’m surprised that this came from someone associated with FAIR – this seems akin to the sort of thing one usually sees from the Yes! Magazine types, who don’t think we should ever utter truths about energy austerity, because oh no, that would be too discouraging! Instead we are urged to talk about how so-called “green energy” will save us… This appears to be a new version of the same mindset.


an incredible debate that will enlighten many readers.


This is the first article I’ve seen on the subject that not only points out that the T-cell system can provide immunity on its own, but also mentions the existence of “memory B-cells.” This is not arcane knowledge available only to specialists in immunology; all you have to know is how to search Wikipedia for things like “immune system,” follow the cross-links to these more specific terms, and then you can figure it out for yourself. Also, if any of the reporters writing this crap had ever bothered to talk to a specialist in immunology, they would know good and well that none of the people who have ever received the measles vaccine, which protects for many years or even decades, is walking around with detectable levels of neutralizing antibodies to that disease in their blood.

Reporting on this subject has been even more willfully incompetent than coverage of the situation in Venezuela, and that’s saying something.

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Any hope for a vaccine against irresponsible reporting?

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That was really good thank you!

juli hollar:you shuld really watch this debate between Kennedy and Dershowitz to learn more about this issue!!!

Agree, I know very little about immunology, but remember reports coming out of other parts of the world when this first started, that people were being re-infected with this virus. When looked at as a big picture, with most of government officials and business leaders talking about normalcy only returning here when a vaccine is found, I wouldn’t classify the story Holler references as “clickbait” either.

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The public is entitled to hear both sides of the vaccine issue. That’s called Informed Consent, which doctors no long give to their patients by saying “the benefits outweigh the risk”. And surprisingly, this ‘journalist’ for Common Dreams thinks the public shouldn’t be informed either but pandered to until everyone just shuts up and accepts risky, experimental vaccines – that informed consent should die also, just like the small percentage of people who will knowingly die from vaccine side effects that the government and pharma acknowledge as acceptable for “the greater good”. Alan Dershowitz recently likened that small percentage of vaccinosis deaths as being drafted into the army, sacrificing your life for your country and doing your duty for others. So roll up your sleeves and your children’s sleeves and commit to being that small percentage who sacrifices their life as a hero to save lives, whether you want to or not!

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While it’s true that the focus on antibodies is misplaced - both because the presence of antibodies doesn’t necessarily signify effective immunity and conversely the fading of antibody titers doesn’t necessarily mean the loss of effective immunity - but we still don’t know if recovery from Covid-19 confers immunity to reinfection. Forget about antibodies - the critical question is whether or not the individual can be infected twice. There are now reports in the media (though not yet in the medical literature) of individuals who have apparently been re-infected after recovery from Covid-19. If these reports are accurate, it is very concerning and raises the question whether or not an effective vaccine is possible.

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This came up while they were struggling to get the Theodore Roosevelt back into service: about twenty sailors were re-infected. It came up early, with the case of a Japanese woman. And it comes up every time COVID-19 antibodies are tracked in the lab. For global capitalism, the virtual absence of natural immunity to coronaviruses, evident and serially ignored from so many sources, might qualify as an “inconvenient truth” – evidently nobody wants to face it.


“evidently nobody wants to face it.”

Pharmaceutical companies and their investors dam sure don’t want to face it, and I’m sure they want these stories suppressed to protect their profits from a vaccine.


After bilking us on vaccines for awhile, Big Pharma can also milk plenty of money out of “therapeutic” approaches (such as USF has switched to researching, away from vaccines). We know they never found a vaccine for people with HIV, only a “cocktail” called HAART (Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Therapy) which will never be available to people with AIDS on the mother continent, as it costs 20K to 60K dollars a year – with some therapies, several doses per day.

If we start to hear discussion of protease inhibitors, we’ll know our goose is seriously cooked. That’s a very volatile therapy which has to be closely monitored to get it just right.


Interesting. What do you think about the zoonotic relationship where millions of minks infected with Covid-19 have been euthanized in several countries.?

There was talk of the first SARS (I’ll call it SARS1) originating from the meat of a Palm Civet which had, in turn, eaten an infected bat. Some people think SARS2 originated that way, too. Palm Civet is feline-like, so transmission to weasels and cats is expectable.

Sometimes cats – our Felis domesticus – show symptomatic infections. (They say the same of dogs, but the evidence of that is much thinner.) We’ve been without a household cat for a few years now. I really miss feline companionship. Probably if we wind up getting a kitty at some point, it’ll be an inside kitty.

I’m sure we will learn more about natural relationships in all of this. I’ve read that part of this is opportunistic, where usually distanced by natural barriers, additional domestication of wild animals and marketing them as food is part of the issue. In some realms of thought there are creative cycles and destructive cycles, that changing the cycle does more than trying to fix the broken pieces.

I’ve learned a great deal from felines and well all sorts of critters.

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