32 Comments

It’s primarily a business decision for the journals. They are in it for profit, not for the betterment of science. Typically you try to publish a contrary result in a lower tier journal. Or you look for some new finding that supersedes what was published elsewhere.

Expand full comment

Children head bang. Pets head press.

All pet vaccines contain thimerosal/ mercury and are Not calibrated for weight.

How many wild animals do you see having seizures?

How common is it in dogs?

https://www.google.com/gasearch?q=why%20does%20my%20dog%20put%20its%20head%20against%20the%20wall?&source=sh/x/gs/m2/5

https://www.google.com/gasearch?q=are%20dog%20caccines%20callibrated%20for%20weight!&source=sh/x/gs/m2/5

Expand full comment

It seems that the claim that 37% of dog owners in the study thought vaccines could cause their dog to develop autism is disingenuous. The full study appears to be behind a pay wall, but the 'study snippets' section actually says that 37% believed vaccines to be unsafe, which is far more general than a specific concern about autism. The link to the autism claim goes to a BU School of Public Health page which cites the study, but makes the '37% concerned about autism claim' in a paragraph which does not appear linked to the specific study and the remainder of the article trots out the usual "safe and effective" marketing buzz phrases.

Of course it is possible this explicit information is contained within the full text of the article, to which I do not have access; although it is hard to believe that the journal would not have led with this startling information in the snippets section if the study did indeed demonstrate these findings.

This feels like yet another effort to discredit reasonable concerns related to vaccine safety in general. After the gross failures of regulatory bodies related to covid vaccines, is it really that surprising that pet owners might wonder if the "safe and effective" mantra can be trusted, for themselves or their pets?

Expand full comment

It seems to me that replication studies are very intellectually stimulating to read. When two research groups come to very different conclusions, trying to unwind the reasons for the disparities are some of the most intense, but intellectually satisfying exercises I have ever engaged in. I say publish the replications. Readers will thank you for them.

Expand full comment

The medical journals with paywalls to prevent the public from reading studies is a travesty to the public. Articles are sent to journalists who quote the results without any concern for the quality of the research. If I can't see the research article in full, I consider the results suspect.

Expand full comment

Thank you once again for posting another valuable article. I stopped reading much in the medical journals early in my career when I realized how corrupt and unscientific the great majority of the studies were. But I had no idea that there was an actual policy to not publish replication studies and was amazed that some of them even admitted as much. The general public (and, sadly, many in the medical profession) do not know the definition of science. They think of it as a body of knowledge. But science is simply a process for discovering truths in the physical world. Replications and refutations are not just interesting followups but are an absolutely essential part of the process. Without them it is not science.

Expand full comment

Think about this - how many of us have learned more from “failure” than success? In my own experience this has been true. Scientists get this. Sadly, those who pay the scientists don’t seem to. And therein lies the failure.

Expand full comment

The incentives in academic science re: publication are perverse.

I am in insurance industry research, and while negative results (no "there" there) are not exciting, I can publish about lack of correlations that people thought existed. They need to know that stuff -- and they will pay for that information.

No, it doesn't get me academic plaudits or tenure. It does get my company money.

Expand full comment

Blast from the past! I used to use The Infinite Actuary materials back in 2014. Can't believe I recognized your name here!

Expand full comment

Oh hey Kolby -- yeah I’ve got my own Substack writing about mortality and public pensions

Expand full comment

I just signed up! Still interested in those topics even though I no longer have any actuarial ambitions (I blame MFE for that... good riddance 😂)

Expand full comment

Ha - yeah, that's an ugly one.

And I see your sign up -- you read Glenn Loury, too! Great taste! ;)

Expand full comment
Sep 26, 2023·edited Sep 26, 2023

Since the article addresses correcting mistakes. I'll fix thie error in the article: "that the public may actually be right to be skeptical of science"

After COVID and VAX, I *KNOW* I'm right not to trust scientists/doctors/pharma and most of all, the shill or marketing arm of Pharma: FDA/CDC and prof org's for doctors including journals who now adopted the mandate of virtue signaling and narrative driven acceptance.

And I used to be the staunchest supporter of them. The trust bridge was burned beyond repair

Expand full comment

I'm with you. After covid exposed the corruption in FDA and CDC I'm to the point where I think steering clear of the medical system is the best way to longevity, assuming you're eating well and getting exercise.

My primary doc wouldn't refill a script I've long had for Albuterol. Seasonal hay fever has plagued me all my life; I've always had asthma. But now she wants me to consult a pulmonologist so he can prescribe the inhaler. I won't. Instead I've found black tea actually works at opening the upper airways. Last ditch is ephedrine sulfate, still OTC. And I know if I went to a pulmonologist it's off to the races with tests and meds. Nope. I don't trust anyone in medicine.

Expand full comment

Very timely and important topic to be discussed and debated. The quick answer to the title is, No! Of Course not.

While reading into this essay, I was moving along nicely until I read the following line, and felt like I had just stepped into a large rusty nail with a barefoot, "Unsurprisingly, they found no effect". With only one word, "Unsurprisingly" the author inadvertently supports the hypothesis from Bem's study on precognition. All in all, though, a worthwhile read. I also agree with another commenter that the jab at those who suspect there beloved furry companions have been injured by a vaccine was negligent.

Will Sensible medicine please review the books, Turtles all the way Down and Dissolving Illusions.

Expand full comment

Sad that this is worse but to be honest many journals NEJM in particular have always been biased and agenda driven. My coworkers worked n a project published by a coinvestigator without consent and they misrepresented data. A letter to the editor was rejected as it didn't push the preferred narrative. I still cringe when anyone talks of COVID. After COVID, Dr. Fauci and his cohorts still wont reject the idea of building pathogens to infect humans that otherwise would not to "research" them. This is pure evil and one can study disease in the native species and learn all they need to know about pathogenesis without building another COVID pandemic. That pandemic was arrogance and the outcome predictable. Perhaps it was even by design.

Expand full comment

Great points reinforcing an endemic problem with Science. What about a journal that only accepted and published peer reviewed replication studies and retractions? Require that the title include the name of the original journal. Scarlet A’s all around.

Expand full comment

I am a lifetime subscriber of the New England Journal of Medicine. NEJM has embraced many editorial positions on abortion, gun violence as a public health issue, climate change, and for the Affordable Care Act. Despite the controversial positions, they have NEVER sought out contrary viewpoints for the sake of readers. The same is true for Nature, once a universally respected journal. This is essentially a boycott against conservative viewpoints.

Expand full comment

They’ve been corrupted for a long time. Once ads for pharma start in journals I no longer trust them.

Expand full comment

Yep NEJM has been corrupted to a narrative for decades.

Expand full comment

And yet it does not occur to them that their bias does not in some way violate the scientific method!

Expand full comment

Why hasn't anybody created a journal with the sole focus on negative results? I think there needs to be some incentive for researchers to get credit for their work even when their findings aren't significant.

Expand full comment

I agree that would be vitally important. Problem is there is no funding for that. Can you imagine the public response after learning that a vaccine wasn’t doing what the pharma folks said it would or should - oh wait...🤭

Expand full comment

I agree that it's not without issues. As somebody more familiar with social sciences, I'd like to see it in those contexts...i have wayyyy too much skepticism about the purported health benefits of birdsong and I suspect that many people who have studied the matter found no results and never published.

I think if it gains traction in social sciences we may start to see it in other contexts.

Expand full comment

What if there was a journal that did nothing but publish replications?

Expand full comment

I believe such a journal exists, but few pay attention to it.

Expand full comment

"37% of dog owners thought that vaccines might make their dog autistic." the incorrect perceived safety of vaccines should no longer be used to gaslight. they are inadequately tested with strong financial and legal incentives to maintain the status quo.

Expand full comment

I don't know what autism in dogs would look like, but I have personally met three people whose daughter/son/niece had regressive autism after vaccination. Given everything we're learning about the gut-brain-immune system relationship, it's pathetic the gas-lighting that is happening towards these families. I believe that if we stopped denying the link, and started investigating it, we could figure out how to prevent it, especially if it's related to microbiome health. In my family, the two non-Covid adverse vaccine reactions happened with a vaccine given a month after a round of antibiotics. If that's all that needs to stop - stop giving vaccines with or shortly after antibiotics and let the gut biome rebuild, then it's criminal that we continue to bury the subject at all.

Expand full comment

Yes! This is the larger underlying problem

Expand full comment

I don’t believe that vaccines could cause autism in dogs, however I don’t doubt that they might cause seizures in dogs. The vet even told me that could be the reason our Golden Retriever started having seizures. There needs to be more rigorous research into the safety of vaccines, for our pets as well as for ourselves. After my last flu shot, I developed a frightening stiffness in my legs and doctors at first feared GB. Thank God it wasn’t but my doctor said no more flu shots for me--ever. After that, I did a lot of research after blindly taking every vax that was recommended. (My father was a Harvard trained surgeon who touted the miracle of vaccines, so why wouldn’t I trust them?!) So yes, now I question the safety of vaccines.

Expand full comment