Biography

RWP was born in Manchester, in the north of England, in the late 1950s, so he is very old. He really liked the north of England, which by 1965 was hip and had three TV channels, and where he went to a coed school. His parents, for reasons best known to themselves, then yanked him away, to Belfast and then Dublin, which had one TV channel that started up at 6 pm with the Angelus (Catholic call to prayer). He also had to go to an all boys school, where he realized he really missed girls. This probably let him focus on schoolwork, though, and at age 19, after he had finished college, he set off for America, where he still resides. He has a bachelors degree in biochemistry and a Ph.D. from Harvard in biophysics, and has lived also in Mainz, Germany, Setauket NY, and Richland WA. He currently divides his time between Nebraska, Rosslyn VA, and Florida.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Conservative bashing in the London Times

The London Times, though it be a Murdoch newspaper, has given voice to succession of rabidly anti-American and specifically anti-Republican correspondents. The latest is Justin Webb, whose real job is to present the Today program on BBC Channel 4 (natch), and begins a Times editorial on the antivax movement today with...

Right-wing Americans have finally exposed the true extent of their scientifically and socially illiterate barminess.

...which is radically at odds with the fact that opposition to vaccination is heavily concentrated in liberal areas. As a CDC official said a couple of days ago, if you want to find unvaccinated children, put a pin in each Whole Foods store on a map and draw a one-mile radius around each of them. The state with the highest rate of kindergartner vaccination in the US is not California or Massachusetts but Mississippi. I can only begin to list all the Democrat politicians and liberal celebrities who are either antivax or have flirted with antivax pseudoscience, starting with Obama and Hillary Clinton, we have Bill Maher, Kristin Cavalieri, Jim Carrey, Mayim Bialik, Charlie Sheen and Robert F Kennedy Jr. (to whom John Stewart gave a sympathetic Daily Show interview in 2005).

Republicans, being these days largely of a libertarian bent, often support in principle parents' right not to vaccinate their kids, but statistics show they tend to vaccinate their own kids. A map of of non-medical vaccine exemptions, produced by the far-left Mother Jones, shows an excellent correlation with those states that vote left, particularly granola states (those inhabited by 'flakes fruits and nuts') such as Oregon and Vermont. Meanwhile, the non-blue state parts of the Midwest, and the South, vaccinate religiously, so to speak.

I may well follow my sister's advice and move my subscription to the Telegraph. My general policy is that if a news organ lies about something you know well, you shouldn't trust them on things you don't know so well.


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