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       As noted in the previous post on this unfolding story, I'm posting some additional news on it here. What was bad enough, a story of the children of unwed mothers subjected to systematic institutional abuse and neglect by the Catholic Church, is now tied to Big Pharma. It's not enough the children suffered outrageous mortality at the hands of those who were supposed to care for them; they were also used as medical guinea pigs.

Much more below the Orange Omnilepticon.

The latest bombshell is further down, but first some perspective. jakedog42 linked to an article in the Irish Times giving some idea of the reaction in Ireland.

       There's an update in the Irish Times in which Corless, who triggered the investigations with her work, has a video explaining more of the story. (video at http://bcove.me/...) The print story at the Irish Times also has some more context about the story.

       There are some must-read opinion pieces as well: This time, the issue of mother and baby homes must be addressed - Even the story of Philomena Lee, as recounted in the film starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, did not stir the national conscience to action; Death devoid of dignity at Bon Secours home - Opinion: Every effort must be made to make proper burial arrangements for the children; If you don’t approve of the church then don’t take part in its rituals - Opinion: Each spring, thousands of non-believers allow their pre-pubescent daughters to don wedding dresses for their first communion.

A search of the Daily Mail has additional information and photos (albeit in tabloid style). Here's a June 2 report: Mass septic tank grave 'containing the skeletons of 800 babies' at site of Irish home for unmarried mothers.

CHILDREN AS GUINEA PIGS

         The latest is staggering. Here's another report which adds an extra dimension of horror: Thousands of children in Irish care homes at centre of 'baby graves scandal' were used in secret vaccine trials in the 1930s.

Scientists secretly vaccinated more than 2,000 children in religious-run homes in suspected illegal drug trials, it emerged today.

Old medical records show that 2,051 children and babies in Irish care homes were given a one-shot diphtheria vaccine for international drugs giant Burroughs Wellcome between 1930 and 1936.

There is no evidence that consent was ever sought, nor any records of how many may have died or suffered debilitating side-effects as a result.

The scandal was revealed as Irish premier, Enda Kenny, ordered ministers to see whether there are more mass baby graves after the discovery that 800 infants may be buried in a septic tank outside a former mother and baby home in Tuam, Co. Galway.

       The road to Hell is paved with good intentions - and profits.

        Doubtless the people involved told themselves this would be for that 'greater good' and it would save more lives than would be put at risk. But…

Michael Dwyer, of Cork University’s School of History, found the child vaccination data by trawling through tens of thousands of medical journal articles and archive files.

He discovered that the trials were carried out before the vaccine was made available for commercial use in the UK.

Homes where children were secretly tested included Bessborough, in Co. Cork and Sean Ross Abbey in Roscrea, Co. Tipperary, both of which are at the centre of the mass baby graves scandal.

Other institutions where children may also have been vaccinated include Cork orphanages St Joseph’s Industrial School for Boys, run by the Presentation Brothers, and St Finbarr’s Industrial School for Girls, run by the Sisters of the Good Shepherd.
In Dublin, it is believed that children for the trials came from St Vincent’s Industrial School, Goldenbridge, St Joseph’s School for Deaf Boys, Cabra, and St Saviours’s Dominican Orphanage.

But Mr Dwyer said: 'What I have found is just the tip of a very large and submerged iceberg.

'The fact that no record of these trials can be found in the files relating to the Department of Local Government and Public Health, the Municipal Health Reports relating to Cork and Dublin, or the Wellcome Archives in London, suggests that vaccine trials would not have been acceptable to government, municipal authorities, or the general public.

'However, the fact that reports of these trials were published in the most prestigious medical journals suggests that this type of human experimentation was largely accepted by medical practitioners and facilitated by authorities in charge of children’s residential institutions.'

       There's a great deal more at the Daily Mail on this; read the whole thing.

       And be sure to read this as well. The tip of the iceberg began to show recently; this report from Patricia McDonagh at the Belfast Daily Telegraph came out in 2010.

A woman subjected to a controversial vaccine trial as a baby without her mother's consent broke her silence last night to reveal her traumatic decades-long fight for justice.

Mari Steed (50) was effectively used as a guinea pig during the 'four-in-one' vaccine trials carried out on her between December 1960 and October 1961 when she was between nine and 18 months old.

She was given up for adoption to a couple in the US shortly afterwards and is now preparing a class action in the US courts against the multinational drugs giant responsible for the medical tests, an Irish Independent investigation reveals.

       But, there were hints of it back in the 1990s.
Suspicions that vaccine trials had taken place on vulnerable Irish children -- many of whom were in state care -- first surfaced in the early 1990s.

As the current decade dawned, former residents of children's homes began to publicly raise concerns that they had been the subject of experimental trials.

However, it was not until 1997 that the State gave an assurance that it would formally inquire into the issue.

     Note the dates here. The vaccine trials were going on as late as the 1960s; what's new is the revelation that they began in the 1930s. What Catherine Corless has begun has pulled back the curtain on a far larger horror show involving criminal conduct that touches on the  Catholic Church, the government, and Big Pharma. We've hit the trifecta. (Never underestimate the power of a historian - or a determined woman.)

      This story has hit a lot of nerves and it's not done yet. It's part of the War on Women, in that these children who have been so victimized were born of unwed mothers who were themselves victimized and dehumanized. It touches on the separation of Church and State, because it shows what happens when government delegates moral authority and power to an organization without oversight or accountability to those whom it is to serve. It touches on the Catholic Church and the latest revelation out of centuries of bad behavior. It touches on the private sector and the willingness of those to profit from the misery of the powerless. It demonstrates the problem of increasing inequality and increasingly brutal class warfare. It emphasizes the importance of the "When Women Succeed, America Succeeds" agenda, which could go a long way in preventing these horrors.

     Chances are this is not going to get the coverage in the U.S. media it deserves - we have too many fake scandals to obsess over, too many places where pulling back the curtain would show America what it does not want to see, too many people in positions of power who embody the worst qualities of humanity being revealed here. (Consider this post from virally suppressed looking at the horrible conditions persisting in West Virginia months after the Freedom Industries chemical spill.) The world is what it is however, and if we would envision it as a better place, we have to start by seeing it as it is - and do something about it.

Originally posted to xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 08:50 AM PDT.

Also republished by Shamrock American Kossacks.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (254+ / 0-)

    People wonder why we haven't been contacted by beings from other worlds. I've a sneaking suspicion they're still waiting for intelligent life to develop here.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 08:45:33 AM PDT

  •  So, please don't taze me, but I have a question. (13+ / 0-)

    The woman who's bringing the suit doesn't seem to imply that the vaccine caused her harm, does it? (not from a quick read, anyway).

    And, is there a link between the vaccine and the heaps of dead bodies now found?

    Don't get me wrong, not saying it's okay to use human guinea pigs, just trying to connect what dots might exist....

    “I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.” Thomas Edison, 1931

    by nzanne on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:00:33 AM PDT

    •  Even if you successfully connected the dots, (56+ / 0-)

      you'd still get a pattern so abstract it would do you no good.  Which is a long way of saying that the issue is that infants and children were used in drug trials, the results of which are completely irrelevant.  

      There may be a link between the experiments and subsequent fatalities, but, once again, whether in fact the experimentation actually killed infants and children is not the point, which is that the experimenters were indifferent to the children's risks.  There's a name for that:  depraved indifference.

      •  It was the standard practice of the time (10+ / 0-)

        and not just in Ireland.  You do recall the Tuskegee experiments?

        If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

        by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:40:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why are you so defensive? (19+ / 0-)

          Yes, of course I'm familiar with the Tuskegee experiments.  Certainly, the vulnerable of our population--anyone institutionalized--have always been the victims of the unscrupulous.  None of these victimized were done to under the imprimatur of a religion, however--and that's one of the elements that make this story so bloody appalling.

        •  Yup - and why that too is a shame and a crime (15+ / 0-)

          It's another case of a vulnerable, discriminated against population being taken advantage of, and if I recall correctly, the study ran long past the point at which any more useful information was to be gained by letting it continue. People suffered and died who didn't have to - because they were 'lesser beings' of little worth in the grand scheme of things.

          By the logic you seem to be trying to embrace here, we should give what happened in Ireland a free pass, because we did similar bad things here. Which conveniently elides the point that the Tuskegee experiments are now universally condemned, and the people connected with them discredited.

          "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

          by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:58:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not saying it gets a free pass (12+ / 0-)

            I'm saying all the facts aren't in.  Beginning with what the original offer was to those who ran the home, and whether the experiment did in fact result in harm to the subjects.  Without some of that information, it's impossible to draw a conclusion as to the state of mind of those who participated.  And when we're talking moral decisions, state of mind is part of the analysis, no?

            I'm saying I'm glad that the process of medical research has advanced, that there are IRBs and standards for human research, and that those who review proposals for human research must be educated as to what can happen if you don't impose those protections, but I recognize that those things grew out of experiments that were run without them.

            And I'm glad it was vaccine and not thalidomide, aren't you?

            If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

            by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:06:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Wasn't this also a standard practice in Africa? (16+ / 0-)

            I seem to recall some very serious and disturbing stories about people (children) being used for drug trials in Africa.  I would be willing to bet that when the baby-gravy train dried up in Ireland, that it was renewed in Africa and other developing areas of the world.

            See NY Times Article: Nigerians Receive Payments for Children Who Died in Vaccine Trials

            Trovan was introduced in 1998 and became a lucrative product for Pfizer, but it was later withdrawn in Europe and restricted in the United States after the drug was blamed for cases of fatal liver damage. NYT  
            This is a much much bigger problem than just in Ireland--not to detract from this, but I would want to know if the Church was also involved in Africa as well? And did this happen here at Indian Boarding Schools or in other countries that housed Catholic Charities that dealt with unwed mothers and children consigned to a fate with the church.

            Apparently this has happened here in the states as well with Foster Children. I found a documentary called Guinea Pig Kids, I have not viewed this document and so I am posting a link for anyone who is interested to check it out. I have no opinion on it at this point.

            Further material on the Guinea Pig Kids piece at SourceWatch Shows this:

            According to ICC's published history:

                "Early in the epidemic, HIV disease of childhood was considered to be a down-hill course leading to death. But in the late 1980's, before AZT was available, many very ill children admitted to ICC got dramatically better with proper nurturing and high-quality medical and nursing care."

            According to ICC's Medical Director, Dr. Painter, children who "can't take" or refuse the drugs have a tube surgically implanted in their abdomens through which the drugs are administered, regardless of the child's wishes.[9]

            ICC is run by Columbia University’s Presbyterian Hospital, in affiliation with Catholic Home Charities through the Archdiocese of New York. It is a 4-story brick former convent in the Washington Heights area of New York city. The children have been removed from homes by the Agency for Child Services. They are black, Hispanic and poor and many have mothers with histories of drug abuse who have died. Once taken into custody, they become subjects of NIAID sponsored drug trials sponsored by the NIAID and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) in conjunction with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies. The drugs given to the children are toxic, known to cause genetic mutation, organ failure, bone marrow death, bodily deformations, brain damage and fatal skin disorders. If the children refuse the drugs, they’re held down and force fed. Should they continue to resist, they’re taken to Columbia University Presbyterian hospital, where a surgeon puts a plastic tube through their abdominal wall into their stomachs. The drugs are injected directly into their intestines. In 2003, two children, ages 6 and 12, had debilitating strokes due to drug toxicities. The 6-year-old went blind and they both died shortly after. Another 14 year old died later and an 8-year-old boy had two plastic surgeries to remove large, fatty, drug-induced lumps from his neck.

            Children at ICC tested HIV positive or were born to were born to mothers who tested HIV positive. However, neither parents nor children were informed of the critical fact that HIV tests are extremely inaccurate.[10], [11] The HIV test cross reacts with nearly seventy common conditions, giving false positive results. They include common colds, herpes, hepatitis, tuberculosis, drug abuse, inoculations and most troublingly, current and prior pregnancy.[12], [13], [14]

            Factors that cause false positives in pregnant mothers can be passed to their children, who may also be given a false diagnosis. Most people have never heard of this undoubtedly best kept secret in medicine, though it is well known to HIV researchers. Researchers don’t tell the doctors. They certainly don’t tell unwilling child subjects for the next generation of profitable drugs. Source Watch

            Once again I have not vetted this material. I only share it for the sake of discussion at this point. I don't have time to run all this stuff down, so any takers?

            "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

            by GreenMother on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:25:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I can tell you something about HIV testing. (14+ / 0-)

              What I can tell you is that the tests are a lot better and more specific these days. And if a mother tests positive, the child almost certainly will.

              The reason is this. When someone is infected with HIV, the body eventually responds by producing antibodies. The kind of tests used for screening for HIV do so by reacting to those antibodies. (4th generation tests also detect the the p24 antigen, so they pick up an HIV-1 infection sooner.)

              Why this is important is because those tests can't tell you if a baby is infected or not by themselves. Mothers pass on antibodies to their children while they are still in the womb; if the mother tests positive, the child will too - but that doesn't mean the child is also infected, because the virus may not have been passed on.

              To confirm infection with HIV-1 in a child, it is necessary to do a different kind of test, one that tests for the actual virus, not the antibodies to it. (Like the Aptima test from Gen-Probe) It takes several tests, from birth and over the 4-6 months following birth to be sure the child is not infected. If the virus is not detected within that window, the child is presumed to be free of HIV-1 infection. If so, the child should not need any treatment for HIV-1 (see below).

              Now, if an infected mother is put on HIV-1 drugs through pregnancy, and the child is put on them after birth, mother to child transmission can be reduced to near zero (around 1% in some areas) - provided the mother does not breast feed. That's another route by which the child can be infected.

              Direct testing for the virus is also done in cases of possible recent infection, where the patient may not yet have any detectable antigen or antibody levels, but may still be infectious.

              But, the important thing is for mothers to be screened for HIV-1 before delivering a child, so that everything can be done to prevent maternal transmission to the child.

              "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

              by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:57:21 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I wouldn't argue with that. (9+ / 0-)

                My exception is to:

                According to ICC's Medical Director, Dr. Painter, children who "can't take" or refuse the drugs have a tube surgically implanted in their abdomens through which the drugs are administered, regardless of the child's wishes.[9]
                Informed Consent.

                Those are two words.

                Informed--meaning you know this is an experimental treatment or trial,

                and

                Consent--meaning that you said yes to participation in the absence of coercion or threats.

                Neither of those benchmarks were met if the statements in this page are true, and neither benchmark was met at the houses in Ireland either.

                And what also caught my eye:

                ICC is run by Columbia University’s Presbyterian Hospital, in affiliation with Catholic Home Charities through the Archdiocese of New York.
                Just pointing it out.

                "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

                by GreenMother on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:35:29 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The point being--that this is perhaps a much (12+ / 0-)

                  broader problem--this use of orphans and foster children, and third world children for guinea pigs without informed consent and sometimes under the guise of charity.

                  Once again, not to detract from what is going on in Ireland, because that pisses me off like nothing else, but given that patterns are potentially emerging institutionally speaking, I am looking at that on a global scale using Ireland as the example, rather than the exception.

                  "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

                  by GreenMother on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:38:31 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Thank you. (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    kaliope, Heart of the Rockies

                    If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

                    by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:47:00 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  You have a good point GM. (6+ / 0-)

                    Checking today on Residential Schools , run by Catholic, Anglican and Presbyterian charities and overseen by the Canadian government. They were used to warehouse all the First Nations children in Canada. These schools starved children, abused them physically and sexually and ran medical experiments on them. Most particularly in regards to TB.

                    http://www.aptn.ca/...

                    It is early days yet to get a full picture of any of this here. The provinces are still in the process of providing their records.

                    Sadly, Ireland and the Catholic church are only the tip of a worldwide iceberg. Eventually we are all going to have to come to terms with this vast experiment by The Great White Man and Religion, both of whom are the heads of this hydra which sees any person not white and not male as disposable, worthless and exploitable.

                    A fo ben, bid bont. - Welsh proverb. ( translation: If you want to be a leader, be a bridge.)

                    by Gwennedd on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 07:45:48 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Thank you for adding this information Gwendedd (6+ / 0-)

                      If we nail the church on this, lets nail them on this for what it is. And that is to say, Policy--as in this is a Feature and not a Bug.

                      That way we can stop it, and not have them pretend like these are isolated incidents with no relation to each other or the hierarchy. I am thoroughly tired of that charade from this institution as well as others.

                      So far we have, Institutional, MultiGenerational Pedophilia, Forced Labor, Torture, Cultural Genocide, and Misogynistic and Homophobic policies codified via political connections.

                      And now we add, Children as Medical Guinea Pigs, and they knew it was wrong, because the bodies were THROWN in unmarked graves.

                      I have left religious groups for far less than this. So this is just jaw droppingly amazing that anyone would put up with this laundry list of historical behavior that continues on into the present.

                      Oh yea and punishing men and women for having sex by letting them die of AIDs and denying access to prophylactics that could mitigate the spread of HIV.

                      "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

                      by GreenMother on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:11:58 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

          •  This is about (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kaliope, pasadena beggar

            poverty, period. And rampant misogyny. Add false piety and the results speak for themselves.

            What do we want? Universal health care! When do we want it? Now!

            by cagernant on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 05:30:10 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  So are you suggesting (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Siri, Chi, Cassandra Waites, old possum

          the Tuskegee experiments were not criminally depraved? And because it was "standard practice" to experiment on the powerless without their consent that was OK? Sheesh.

          Ed FitzGerald for governor Of Ohio. Women's lives depend on it. http://www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com/

          by anastasia p on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:13:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I've said no such thing (12+ / 0-)

            I've just said 1) it wasn't unique; and 2) all the facts aren't in.

            Forgawdsake why do you think I sit on an IRB?

            If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

            by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:15:41 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It's a bit unique, though, isn't it? (8+ / 0-)

              Most of the time, I'd guess no one has it in their mind that women, Catholic women--nuns, to be precise--are going to dispose of children, however they came to be dead (and how they came to be dead really really matters) in a mass burial site--a septic tank, a sewage tank, some kind of tank, whatever.  

              I mean, when you think of women, religious women--you don't think of them disposing of infant bodies in a manner that suggests they're trash, do you? You don't think of religious women being indifferent to the infants and children in their care, and for whom they're compensated by the Irish government, such that the infants and children die of neglect, malnourished, infected?  

              But hey.  That's just me.

              •  See my comment regarding rural Irish burials (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ZenTrainer

                If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

                by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:27:56 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  Actually... (15+ / 0-)

                Considering what we now know about Mother Teresa, many wouldn't be as shocked as you suggest. In particular any comedian who has talked about Catholic School nuns.

                Which is no way a criticism of nuns in general - the sisters who rolled their eyes at the Vatican, for accusing them of too much secular liberalism, I applaud those women for caring more about the people they serve than ignorant and antiquated perspectives of the church.

                But some nuns - particularly the ones you hear about running places like these - have not always been compassionate loving women. They care more about power, control and domination than patience or caring. And the more devout, sometimes the more dangerous - Teresa did believe pain brought you closer to god, and shouldn't necessarily be alleviated. I pity many patients who were under the care of her sisters.

                Some nuns seem to bear more resemblance to the grandmother from Flowers in the Attic, than any nun from The Sound of Music.

              •  Eh, I don't see any reason to think of (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Portia Elm, kfunk937

                "women", "religious women", "Nuns" etc as a special class above any of those kinds of things. Of course, I've read a lot of history.

                That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

                by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:33:49 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Nobody thought a nation of 70M would go Nazi (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  xaxnar, enhydra lutris

                  just like nobody today really believes the US is on a spiral down to the same type of fate (35 states and counting gone down the Dark Path so far).
                  When it comes to human beings, there has not been a whit of regression of the tendencies we call "evil" since the beginnings of civilization. The number of those acting this way at any one time in history fluctuates, but the intensity and depth of the inhumanity never changes.
                  And it will be so until we extinct ourselves.

                  Ash-sha'b yurid isqat an-nizam!

                  by fourthcornerman on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:59:31 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Standard practice? I doubt that unethical human (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, enhydra lutris, Chi, old possum

          experiments were ever "standard" practice, at least in the last few centuries. This is why the Tuskagee experiments are so reviled.

          "You can die for Freedom, you just can't exercise it"

          by shmuelman on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:00:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Informed consent is a fairly recent (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Mr Robert, Roadbed Guy, Ahianne

            development.

            Polio trials began on a large scale in 1954.  I wonder if the consent process used then would pass muster today? Of course we don't ask that question because the outcome was so excellent.

            If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

            by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:12:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It was also out in the open and very public (4+ / 0-)

              The Irish trials were not!

              And polio was a threat to everyone. (Still is, thanks in part to the CIA idiots.)

              "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

              by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:20:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  But the trials in the 1930s (0+ / 0-)

                preceeded it.  That was my whole point.  There was nothing about that that was particularly unusual at the time. There were vaccine studies going back at least to the twenties - pertussis, yellow fever, etc.  And there was the great smallpox experiment, of course.  

                If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

                by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:35:16 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  There was consent on the polio vaccines (9+ / 0-)

              I remember it -- this would have been maybe 1956 or 57, when we got the vaccinations at school, long lines in the cafeteria or gym. My parents definitely had to sign off on it, but most parents were glad to do it because polio was such a scourge, and everyone knew someone who had had it.

              There may have been earlier trials of select groups that were done differently, but I doubt it.

              •  That's my recollection, too. In fact, my (4+ / 0-)

                parents accompanied me (and took the trouble to explain the whole thing to me).

                That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

                by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:38:27 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  What about the experiments? (5+ / 0-)

                The Kaprowski vaccine experiment -- the first of a live-virus polio vaccine -- was conducted with child wards of the state in institutions. They were incapable of informed consent, and their parents were not consulted. Other polio vaccine experiments were conducted on prisoners with no right of refusal.

                Sabin publicly discussed giving his vaccine to his own family and to neighbor families after testing it on a small number of volunteers ... but well before the evidence of larger trials was reviewed and routine use approved.

                There are several good books about the history of polio vaccines that document the trials, approval process, and early mass vaccination campaigns. I was assigned Polio: An American Story by David Oshinsky for the capstone class in my Master of Public Health.

                The history is well documented. Development of polio vaccines was not governed by the ethical standards we now apply to research, and that includes informed consent.

                Just because you're not a drummer doesn't mean that you don't have to keep time. -- T. Monk

                by susanala on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 04:40:28 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  The polio trials and even the treatment (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Portia Elm, xaxnar

              were pretty replete with information and were done, as I recall, on a volunteer basis.

              That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

              by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:36:46 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  the sad fact of history (9+ / 0-)

            is that the early 20th century had some exceptionally awful common practices. people act like the nazis were unique (and in some cases, and in terms of sheer scale, they were), but a lot of the horrific stuff they did and that they believed in has parallels elsewhere in the so-called civilized world, from eugenics to genocide to medical experiments on vulnerable populations. we have learned to forget our past to feel better about ourselves, but the skeletons are still there if we care to look in the closet (or in this case, in the septic tank under the orphanage).

            it is right and good to revise atrocities in the past, but it is dangerous to assume that such things could only have been exceptions, just because the attempts to suppress knowledge of them failed in those cases.

          •  Suggest you read (0+ / 0-)

            The Belmont Report and the critiques which discuss the tension between individual autonomy and the public health.

            If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

            by marykk on Sun Jun 08, 2014 at 10:44:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Tuskegee is exactly correct. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kaliope

          These children were viewed with the same contempt that the white power structure had for the black patients at the infamous study.

          Just another underemployed IT professional computer geek.

          by RhodeIslandAspie on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 04:39:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, marrykk, MUCH worse (0+ / 0-)

          things were done in Germany even more recently -- like the 1940s!  These mass graves in Ireland really just look like child's play in comparison.  So please, just move along, nothing to see here, folks.
          [snark]

    •  Well, that's the thing (32+ / 0-)

      She doesn't know if she was harmed or not. Does she have health problems that might go back to these vaccines? How can she find out unless she brings suit to force GSK to open up their files? And how can she know what risk she's at without finding out what happened to all the other people who got the vaccine?

      No consent for testing was agreed to by her mother - and it's clear the people running these homes had a pretty cavalier attitude about their charges. She was put at risk as though she were of no more consideration than a lab rat.

      Is there a connection between the heaps of dead bodies and the vaccine tests? We don't know, and unless the records are released everywhere, we can't even begin to guess.

      It does explain why the Big Pharma companies aren't working on vaccines any more despite the critical need. It isn't just the limited return on investment, or fear of law suits. It's because they no longer have access to hundreds of free human guinea pigs to test them on.

      "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

      by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:17:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Diphtheria? (0+ / 0-)

      Is it likely that the vaccine back then could have caused the children to get diphtheria and therefore the bodies were" buried " together to limit the spread of the disease?

      •  Even if it didn't, the only way to know if it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mopshell

        worked (at least back then) would be to deliberately expose the kids to the disease in question to see whether or not they were immune.  Nowadays they can do blood tests to not only see if antibodies are produced but also see if they are effective but back then they didn't have that.

        You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

        by Throw The Bums Out on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:39:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I Don 't get this (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      marykk, Gwennedd

      It appears that the vaccine was developed in the 20's so it doesn't make sense to me why they would be testing it in the 30's?

      Of course it may not have been diphtheria vaccine.

      I was adopted out of Roscrea Ireland in 1954.

      •  It was probably a new version of a vaccine (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gwennedd, marykk

        They may have been trying to come up with one that gave longer lasting immunity or had fewer negative side effects, etc. The one in the 1960s was apparently about developing a combined vaccine for several different diseases.

        From a drug company's point of view, vaccines are a poor investment. They're difficult to develop, expensive to test - and people only need them once every few years and they don't get sick.

        It makes a lot more sense to come up with a drug for a chronic incurable condition (lots of continuing sales) that affect a large portion of the population. Much better ROI.  Without a large population of children in these homes available for testing, the economics of vaccine development have only gotten worse.

        "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

        by xaxnar on Sun Jun 08, 2014 at 05:22:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This whole story needs to go viral. (16+ / 0-)

    As a society we need to pull the big ugly scab off of this thing.  Kudos for writing these diaries - and also to Ms. Corless for exposing this travesty.

    "If you're in trouble, or hurt or need - go to the poor people. They're the only ones that'll help - the only ones." John Steinbeck

    by BluejayRN on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:10:08 AM PDT

  •  I don't think we know enough to draw a conclusion (11+ / 0-)

    You should also know that Ireland was hardly the only place that there were vaccine trials on non-consenting children.  That awful practice took place all over, for example, in Russia, in Boston, in Canada among others.  Vaccine trials in children are still an ethical quandary, but the rules for consent, particularly with a vulnerable population, are much more rigorous.  I sit on an Institutional Review Board, and this is a big part of the training.

    So that datum can be spun at least two ways:  1) the children were so devalued it didn't matter or 2) it was an inexpensive way to obtain a possible benefit for a bunch of at-risk kids.  Without knowing more, I don't think a conclusion can be drawn.

    If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

    by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:22:32 AM PDT

    •  and many things as bad in the usa (8+ / 0-)

      read "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"

      besides the aweful treatment of this women and stealing of her cancer cells for medical use

      he daughter in a hospital for the mentally retarded in Maryland was subjected to experiment of the effect of draining brain fluid /extremely painful with no parental permission

      fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

      by mollyd on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:36:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Actually, we can draw a conclusion (22+ / 0-)

      It was wrong.

      It doesn't matter that it's been done elsewhere, it was still wrong. I've spent years working in healthcare, and you just don't do studies like this.

      Statement number one speaks for itself.

      1) the children were so devalued it didn't matter
      Note that the trials were done apparently without government oversight, and the people with the most direct interest of the welfare of the children being used for these tests - their mothers - were cut completely out of the loop.. Did anyone review these tests besides GSK? What did they leave out of the published results? How many cases of vaccine failure or worse occurred? If children died from these tests, who would know and who would report it? We've already seen there are issues with the health records in these homes.

      If this was a way to obtain a possible benefit for kids at risk (and why they were at risk is one of the issues here), did GSK make any public pronouncements to that effect? That it seems to have been done on the QT is more than a little indicative of unethical conduct.

      "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

      by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:40:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree, it was wrong (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        trkingmomoe, JeffW, sow hat, BMScott, catwho

        It was wrong everywhere it was done.  But I don't presume to be able to read the minds of those that did it.  The road to hell, after all, is paved with good intentions.  The insitutional thought processes of GSK and the rest of the industry  may not have been the thought processes of the institutions at which such trials were undertaken.  And they may not have trumpeted it, not because of harm to the research subjects, but simply because the experiment was a dud.  That happens too.

        If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

        by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:45:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And if we just let it slide, it will happen again (9+ / 0-)

          Look - you apparently are trying to make this all about the vaccine testing. And yes that's important matter all by itself.

          But, you don't have to be able to read anyone's mind to realize these children were all being treated as disposable, while in the care of those who were supposed to have made a career of putting their code of morality into practice.

          And what we can see is that in practice, it WAS the road to Hell, which raises the question of just how good those intentions ever were in the first place.

          "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

          by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:06:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Oh yes, it was totally innocent (0+ / 0-)

          That was why they chose to do it in secrecy on a population already publicly shamed, devalued, humiliated and treated like trash — because they just were hoping maybe they could do something nice for them and were so disappointed it was a "dud" because they cared SO much about these shunned kids who ,when they died, were dumping in a cistern.  But of course they may have had good intentions — NOT.

          No, your fantasy scenario does NOT happen. What's your investment in making excuses for this?

          Ed FitzGerald for governor Of Ohio. Women's lives depend on it. http://www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com/

          by anastasia p on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:23:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Insinuations about motive... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            highacidity, marykk

            ....put forward with precisely no proof are getting close to HR territory. Especially concerning a post that begins with an explicit and clear declaration of the wrongness of the actions being discussed. "What's your investment in making excuses for...." is a double-edged blade. If you find it stuck in your back one day, don't complain.

            This is the landscape that we understand, -
            And till the principle of things takes root,
            How shall examples move us from our calm?

            (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

            by sagesource on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 01:18:24 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Are you kidding? (6+ / 0-)

      Oh sure, we "don't know enough" to know this was morally and ethically wrong. Please. And your #1 and #2 are essentially the same thing. An "inexpensive way" is to test on a devalued population. It's pretty clear on a multitude of levels that no one was caringly looking for a "benefit" for these at-risk kids who were treated like dirt and tossed into unmarked graves. And we KNOW this. It's not like the Bergdahl thing.

      Plus your efforts to excuse or defuse this by harping on what happened elsewhere are kind of sad. It's irrelevant.

      Ed FitzGerald for governor Of Ohio. Women's lives depend on it. http://www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com/

      by anastasia p on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:20:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think that is a crock of shit. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Smoh, Portia Elm
      I don't think a conclusion can be drawn.
      That some cult, sect or profession was almost uniformly immoral and brutal at some point in time does not mean that ti wasn't because "normal". That argument denies any obligation to improve life, society and morality as practiced. If you were a guard at a camp where torture was performed and were asked to do so, you had no obligation to think about it for yourself and say, no? Nonsense.

      That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

      by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:50:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm wondering if (0+ / 0-)

      they experimented by vaccinating some children and deliberately infecting others? I read only yesterday that the children died of starvation or disease. I know I'm speculating here but I don't doubt investigators will look into this possibility. There's a lot more of this story to come.

      I think, in defense of those who are horrified by this, it's because that horror was set in train by the discovery of 797 children's bodies disposed of in a septic tank mass grave and that many of them died of starvation. The cruelty of that, the disrespect for their bodies and the fact that they were babies and children no older than 8 inevitably triggered the horror response.

      This new information, the experimental vaccinations, is not what makes it horrific; that response came initially from the discovery. The vaccination experiments just compound that horror; it's one more discovery on a pile of appalling discoveries.

  •  Yeah, but it was a (4+ / 0-)

    consecrated septic tank. So all's well.

    Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

    by dadadata on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:25:30 AM PDT

    •  Did you read the Irish Times story? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      trkingmomoe, ZenTrainer
      ‘I never used that word ‘dumped’,” Catherine Corless, a local historian in Co Galway, tells The Irish Times. “I never said to anyone that 800 bodies were dumped in a septic tank. That did not come from me at any point. They are not my words.”

      If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

      by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:27:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The remark is a general satire upon Catholic (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        trkingmomoe, blueoasis, tommymet

        Magical Thinking. Not a statement of fact.

        From a PIE and ECP.

        *Person of Irish Extraction

        *Ex Catholic Peep

        Thump! Bang. Whack-boing. It's dub!

        by dadadata on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:31:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  were they prayerfully interred in a septic tank? (8+ / 0-)

        Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
        DEMAND CREATES JOBS!!!
        Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

        by TrueBlueMajority on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:33:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They may not have been in a sewage tank at all (5+ / 0-)

          and certainly not all of the decedents were in that single area

          Tuam mother and baby home: the trouble with the septic tank story
          Catherine Corless’s research revealed that 796 children died at St Mary’s. She now says the nature of their burial has been widely misrepresented

          Rosita Boland

          Topics:
          News
          Social Affairs
          Catherine Corless
          Charlie Flanagan
          Galway
          Sat, Jun 7, 2014, 01:00
          First published:
          Sat, Jun 7, 2014, 01:00
          286
          But there is confusion about what dates these maps relate to. One map Corless shows The Irish Times is dated 1892. It describes the building on the site as “Children’s Home”, but in 1892 the building was a workhouse. It did not become a home until 1925. Corless had not noticed this until her attention was drawn to it.
          She is sure that a sewage tank operated on the site in the early part of the 20th century because minutes of the workhouse’s board meetings published at the time by the Tuam Herald report problems of overflowing.
          Would it have taken up the entire space of what is now known as the unofficial graveyard for the babies who died at the home? “No,” she says. “Maybe a third of the area.” She believes that what Sweeney and Hopkins found was the former sewage tank, which she had previously referred to in her article as a crypt. It seems this is where the story of “800 skeletons dumped in a septic tank” has subsequently come from.
          The Sean Ross Abbey in Roscrea, which was a home from 1930 to 1970. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA WireThis time, the issue of mother and baby homes must be addressed
          Even if a number of children are indeed interred in what was once a sewage tank, horrific as that thought is, there cannot be 796 of them. The public water scheme came to Tuam in 1937. Between 1925, when the home opened, and 1937 the tank remained in use. During that period 204 children died at the home. Corless admits that it now seems impossible to her that more than 200 bodies could have been put in a working sewage tank.

          If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

          by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:38:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Interesting - do you have a link to that info? (6+ / 0-)

            What's the source?

            It seems to be a quibble about how many bodies were in the tank; even if it was only 200, the larger number of 796 is still of concern.

            What happened to them, before and after death? It doesn't invalidate the concerns about neglect and abuse where the bodies ultimately ended up - it's about how they got there in the first place.

            "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

            by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:49:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The source was Corless (5+ / 0-)

              in this morning's Irish Times.

              If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

              by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:56:19 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Thanks... (8+ / 0-)

                But to return to my comment above, does that fact that Coreless was misquoted and not all the bodies ended up in a septic tank mean everything is now okay?

                It's telling that you omitted this line from your quote:

                Corless has proved that 796 children died while at St Mary’s in Tuam – a shameful statistic that would not have been known without her years of dedicated work.

                "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

                by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:13:27 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  That was already a given (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  BMScott

                  If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

                  by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:17:01 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Another story from the sod (5+ / 0-)

                  and this one much more recent - within the last five years;

                  A friend had returned and was visiting with family when an aged uncle died.  This was in a little town deep in rural Galway near its border with Roscommon.  While he was there, the uncle died.  As the two-day wake ended, the remains were taken to church for the funeral the following morning, and the cousins called upon him to go to the cemetery and help dig the grave.  

                  As he was digging, he hit something with the shovel, and, digging further pulled it out and discovered it was a bone.  The cousin shrugged and handed him a black cloth bag, telling him to put the bone in it.  He did, and soon another cousin picked up a bit of bone and so forth.  At some point it occurred to him that this might be his own grandfather's remains, and so he inquired.  Indeed, the cousins confirmed, it was.  

                  And when the grave was dug, the bag of bones was deposited in the bottom, awaiting the coffin which would be placed there in the morning.

                  Draw from that what you will.

                  If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

                  by marykk on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:24:05 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Why are you trying so hard to minimize the horror (15+ / 0-)

            Did you watch the linked video? Here is Ms. Corless has to say in that interview. I did my best transcribing it.

            Ms. Corless: I started out to do the history of the nuns and the children who went there and I, I, I wasn't expecting the stories that came up. Because we never really the knew them, the 'home babies' as we called them. I kind of remember them going to school in the lower classes. I do remember that they came down in rows. Down in a double row. Down to school and everybody remembers the sound of the boot because they made a rattle when they came down because the girls and boys wore these ? boots, big black ? boots. Summer and winter. And I do remember they were treated a little bit different than the rest of us. And it's, it's...we always knew not to play with them and to just to keep away.

            Ms. Corless: This whole area was enclosed with an 8 foot high wall right around the 7 acre perimeter and very few people could see in or out. If you were in there you couldn't see what was going on in the outside world. A car would come and drop of a mother I suppose and she'd go in and once they went in there they just didn't see outside again until they left. So, ehm, it was only in my research, when I was talking to people in the area, they said 'did you know as well, there is a little graveyard there at the back". The, the older residents there, before, before, these new houses went up, they, they had the story that two little boys were playing in the area back in the early 70's, late 60's and ehm, they came across a huge hollow in the ground. Then they went further and they saw that there was a slab, a few slabs going across this hollow and so the lads tried to peer in to see what was in there and they, they got some stones and broke it open more. They said it, ehm, when they cracked open the, the slab, that they said it was just full, full to brim with skulls and bones. I said 'were they big or small?' 'Oh' he said, 'they were little ones.' 'All little ones', he said.

            (reporter question garbled)

            Well it's now not just the boys talking. It's, it's, it's from other people around the area. If you talk to them, they say that the, a few people came to see what the fuss was about. Someone called the parish priest to come up and to look at the area and to bless it. It's only in the last, eh, month or so that boys ? were still around. I didn't have their names up until now about a month ago and I spoke to them then.

            Reporter: Do you believe (garbled)

            Ms. Corless: I think it's quite possible going from the boys' explanation ehm, that it was full to the brim with bones. But still, how many children at the time,  does it matter if it was 500? 600? if it isn't a full 796? 10 children in the septic tank? 20? Isn't that horrific? Is it the numbers that makes it horrific?

            Reporter: Would you welcome an explanation garbled

            Ms. Corless: I would welcome the truth. And always, always there the evidence strongly suggests, excavation is the only way. Everyone wants to know. That wasn't our intention. Our intention was to name the children. Have them remembered. Put up a plaque. I'm thinking of the other mother and baby homes in Ireland. I'm thinking of the other groups that are out there desperately trying as we were, to, struggling to have children remembered and if this investigation helps and pushes it forward, I would welcome it. It's justice. Justice for children. Justice for the people that got hurt there.  

            The quote you pulled out makes it seem as if she's not on board with where this is going. That's not true at all.

            "Compassion is the radicalism of our time." ~ Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama -7.88, -6.21

            by Siri on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:49:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Religious extremism in all its forms (9+ / 0-)

      is extremely harmful.

      And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

      by Pale Jenova on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:55:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree that extremism in all its forms (4+ / 0-)

        ... is harmful.

        As I point out below, though, these immoral -- very likely illegal -- studies were administered by scientists.  It wasn't the nuns who were injecting things into the kids and writing up and publishing the results.  

        In this case the scientists were just as responsible for this outrage as the religious authorities who let them do it.  As I wrote below, they could have refused to do it.  They didn't.  In using poor orphan kids as guinea pigs they apparently felt as arrogantly certain and self-righteously justified as anyone in an extreme religious order could possibly be.

  •  Remember folks: this "great" new pope personally (6+ / 0-)

    oversaw the fast-track canonization of JPII - they guy who was happy to travel around with, promote, and publicly celebrate Marcial Maciel.

    In other words: he really doesn't care about stuff like this.

    The Catholic Church exists to serve the psychic apparatus of the men who run it.

  •  One can only imagine what other "treatments" these (3+ / 0-)

    children were exposed to. Prisons and orphanages were full of fresh meat for experiments to "advance medical care"
    I mean the 30s were not exactly the haydays of "big pharma". For that you'd need to look in the last 30 years in developing countries.

    Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. -Martin Luther

    by the fan man on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 10:21:02 AM PDT

  •  "OK, this one's staying sick. Dump 'er." (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Alice Olson, jan4insight, Portia Elm

    Later on...

    "This one's getting well. Stop feedin' 'er, then dump 'er."

    What sweeties.

  •  Important stuff. Thank you. (8+ / 0-)

    As numbers come out, the story will no doubt become even more shocking and uglier.

    These are some big words today, about what is so far known:

    It touches on the separation of Church and State, because it shows what happens when government delegates moral authority and power to an organization without oversight or accountability to those whom it is to serve.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:07:51 AM PDT

  •  Buh, buh, buh, but, it's a Culture of Life (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    enhydra lutris, tommymet

    In loyalty to their kind, they cannot tolerate our minds. In loyalty to our kind, We cannot tolerate their obstruction.

    by mojave mike on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:40:44 AM PDT

  •  Utterly nauseating (7+ / 0-)

    and very interesting, from one of your links, how quickly the Archbishop is ready to hand over the heads of the nuns (deservedly so) but none of those bastards did shite for the children, mostly boys, molested by priests.

    Thank heavens  Catherine Corless tore the scab off of this monstrous canker.

    Virtual tip -- thanks for the diary.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 11:55:21 AM PDT

  •  We Used Orphans For Vaccine Trials Thru The 1950s (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    susanala, Gwennedd

    The March of Dimes paid for polio vaccine trials in orphanages in the 1950s.

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 12:27:33 PM PDT

  •  I'm seeing one group NOT being held accountable (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk, catwho, Portia Elm

    ... in this diary and comments:

    What Catherine Corless has begun has pulled back the curtain on a far larger horror show involving criminal conduct that touches on the  Catholic Church, the government, and Big Pharma.
    What about this earlier passage?
    Scientists secretly vaccinated more than 2,000 children in religious-run homes in suspected illegal drug trials, it emerged today.
    Where is the outrage here directed to the scientists who did this?  The Church, the government, and Big Pharma couldn't have done a thing if there weren't scientists willing to perform these studies and administer the vaccinations.  

    There is a lot of Church-bashing going on here, and Big Pharma-bashing -- and rightly so -- but I haven't seen one comment directed to the moral failings of the scientists who actually performed the tests ... or of the apparent moral state (or lack of it) of science-as-a-field at the time (and apparently into the 60's).

    Where is the moral outrage directed at the scientists who should have had the same level of humanity and common decency we're expecting from the Church, government, and Big Pharma?  They could have refused to do it.  They didn't.

    I'm by no means anti-science, but I haven't seen one comment here focused on that glaring aspect.  It appears to me that in this case the (rightly) pro-science stance of the DKos community might be tipping into a blind-spotted bias of not holding the culture of science at the time equally accountable in this case.

    •  "Science" is a field.... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tommymet, Ahianne

      ....not an organization. It is not centralized and there are no recognized leaders.

      If something is done by priests and nuns in the Catholic Church, we assume that either the Church knew about it, or the Church could have known about it if it cared to. Likewise for government or Big Pharma. In these three cases, the choice is between active complicity and willful neglect, since there is an organization (or several large organizations in the case of Big Pharma) that had a responsibility to keep itself informed of what all its members were doing (the doctrine of command responsibility, the "Lieber Code" of the American Civil War that made commanders responsible if their men killed or wounded helpless enemies, and the "Yamashita standard" of World War II). But there is no "Supreme Commander," or "Director," or "Chairman of the Board" of Science.

      This is the landscape that we understand, -
      And till the principle of things takes root,
      How shall examples move us from our calm?

      (Mary Oliver, "Beyond the Snow Belt.")

      by sagesource on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 01:37:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I realize that. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        marykk, greenbell, Portia Elm

        That's why I didn't refer to science as an organization.  I very specifically referred to:

        Where is the outrage here directed to the scientists who did this?
        I still haven't seen any condemnation of the scientists who took part.
        but I haven't seen one comment directed to the moral failings of the scientists who actually performed the tests ... or of the apparent moral state (or lack of it) of science-as-a-field at the time
        a blind-spotted bias of not holding the culture of science at the time equally accountable in this case.
        Whether there is a specific organization or not, there is a culture of science -- a mindset ... a code of values .... what is considered acceptable or unacceptable among the people who practice in that field.

        We talk about the "police culture" or "military culture" that allows certain horrible things to happen ... of people looking the other way.  If we can condemn those "cultures" the same applies here.

        Again ... these scientists could have refused to do it.  They didn't.  In fact, they published their results for their peers to see, apparently without fear of condemnation, thinking (apparently correctly) that their peers wouldn't find it revolting either.  Where was the condemnation among other scientists at this time?

        Homes where children were secretly tested included ...
        If they had to do it secretly, they must have known it would likely be condemned by people outside their field, however.  Which seems to be the case:
        'The fact that no record of these trials can be found in the files relating to the Department of Local Government and Public Health, the Municipal Health Reports relating to Cork and Dublin, or the Wellcome Archives in London, suggests that vaccine trials would not have been acceptable to government, municipal authorities, or the general public.
        I'm sorry, but it looks to me like you're proving my point about a bias ... trying to wiggle out of holding people in a field you approve of responsible for their part in this tragedy.
        •  I rather expect that will be part of the story (6+ / 0-)

          No one gets a free pass in this.

          It would be interesting to know if GSK offered any financial incentives or other considerations to the homes in order to get access to the children. Was it pitched as an experiment that would benefit them? Who evaluated the risks and signed off on them ahead of time? What did the people doing the studies think about it? I expect some of them may come forward now that this news is broken - but then again, who knows what contracts they are bound by from their employment? I can't see any GSK lawyers allowing any loose talk.

          "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

          by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:35:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The only reason I bring this point up ... (0+ / 0-)

            is:  in the limited context of this diary only, here on DKOS -- it looks to me as if the scientists who did the experiments in the first place are getting a free pass -- if only by omission of outrage.

            While there's a lot of proper outrage at the religious people at the time who let the kids in their care be experimented on ... and some at the companies that sponsored the experimentation ...  I haven't seen any at the science people at the time who actually did the experimenting (or their peers who didn't protest or condemn what their colleagues did).

        •  You are trying to separate the employees (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          niemann, Portia Elm

          out for opprobation, as is correct, but they aren't known, just the company they worked for, so far. Whether, BTW, they were all scientists or not isn't really certain. Who designed the tests, who selected the guinea pigs, who performed the tests, who collected and analyzed the data, etc.?

          That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

          by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 04:02:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm condemning the culture of science at the time (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Portia Elm, greenbell

            ... as well as the individuals who did it.  

            Whether they were employees of a company or not, those individuals didn't refuse to experiment on kids on moral grounds.  When they were finished, they published their results to their peers, who apparently also saw nothing wrong with using poor orphan kids as guinea pigs.

            I just keep focusing on this because no one else here seems to be.  There's a lot of church-bashing, but if we're going to condemn the religious people who let this happen, we need to equally condemn the scientific people who suggested doing it in the first place.

            •  Yeah, nobody else is because the wider (0+ / 0-)

              version you promote is not supported by any evidence. Did physicists experiment on children? How about chemists? What "culture of science" are you referring to? As to biology and medicine, we have some data points. The above testing and far more recent testing in the third world by big pharma. Also, from der wiki,

              The American Anti-Vivisection Society was formed in 1883 in Philadelphia. The group was inspired by Britain's recently passed Cruelty to Animals Act 1876.
              , as to biology and medicine overall. That, however, says nothing about any "culture of science".

              That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

              by enhydra lutris on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 04:48:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Fine. The culture of scientists working in biology (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                marykk

                and medicine at the time then.  (Although I'm guessing physicists and chemists may have also played a part in the thousands of the unethical radiation experiments done during the same periods.)

                Scientist in those fields did this unethical experimentation on children.  Their peers gave them a pass.  If we condemn the nuns and the drug companies for it, we have to equally condemn the scientists who did it ... and their peers who were apparently just fine with it.

        •  So if the people are already mentioned under one (0+ / 0-)

          of their affiliations they also need to be mentioned under another one or it doesn't count somehow?  That seems to be the core of your "argument" here.  You claim to only be talking about the scientISTS involved and not scientists in general, despite the fact that you know they were employees of the companies that ARE being mentioned - the Big Pharma companies, and therefore were already mentioned.

          You do have a bias if you think that describing the people responsible via mentioning that it was employees of a named company isn't enough and they also need to be mentioned a second time under what profession they are as well.

          •  If your employer wants you to do something (0+ / 0-)

            unethical, does that let you off the hook for doing it?

            •  In today's job market? And back then too? (0+ / 0-)

              "Sure - do the right thing. It only means you'll lose your job, probably your house, and your kids are never going to that good school - they might even end up starving on the street. It's simple - do the right thing for thousands, maybe millions of people you've never met, or think about your family."

              It doesn't let you off the hook - but it means you have a lot of company on there.

              While those vaccine tests were going on in the 1930s, the world was also still in a pretty nasty depression. Anyone who had a job would have a big incentive to want to keep it whatever the cost. And hey - developing a vaccine could save lives. Those kids will probably be okay, and maybe better off for it.

              The whole point of civilization should be to make choices like that unnecessary, or at worst, avoid situations like that as much as possible. The dreadful algebra of survival has no pity.

              "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

              by xaxnar on Sun Jun 08, 2014 at 05:33:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Those scientists were from the Pharma; (0+ / 0-)

      they would have been employed by the pharma to conduct these experiments and therefore the experimenters, as a group, were part of the big pharma that people here are condemning.

  •  I watched the movie "The Magdalene Sisters" (10+ / 0-)

    recently. It's from 2002. Here's the NYTimes review.

    Even though its setting isn't a penal institution but a convent, Peter Mullan's grim, powerful film ''The Magdalene Sisters'' fits snugly into a long line of heartsick dramas in which innocent people are thrown behind bars to endure the degradation of prison. The inmates, all female, are the victims of a stringently moralistic brand of Irish Catholicism, now on the wane, that used to punish unmarried young women (many in their teens) for premarital sex. Some are confined simply because their frightened puritanical families consider them too unruly.

    These ''bad girls'' exiled from their families and communities, often after becoming pregnant out of wedlock, were forced to do slave labor in convent laundries that proliferated in Ireland until recently. The existence of these religious labor camps run by the Sisters of the Magdalene Order came to light only in the 1970's with the discovery of the unmarked graves of women who lived there.

    After the scandal broke, the laundries were closed, the last in 1996. Some 30,000 women are thought to have passed through their gates.

    This grueling film was an eye-opener.
  •  Why does it do this? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk
    It emphasizes the importance of the "When Women Succeed, America Succeeds" agenda, which could go a long way in preventing these horrors.
    We have deep ties to Ireland, of course, but America is not Ireland is not America, so why is an American political campaign relevant to these uncovered horrors in Ireland?

    Or, if we're talking about allegorical issues in America, what is the link between Nancy Pelosi's bus tour and, for instance, the problems with foster care in this country? Or the problems with the WV chemical spill which you discuss? Or the problems women and children have with living next to toxic waste, including what happens at fracking sites?  Are the Democrats putting  these issues at the forefront of their "Women Succeed" bus tour?

    There is no way for a citizen of a Republic to abdicate his responsibilities. ---Edward R. Murrow

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 01:42:24 PM PDT

    •  Exactly that (8+ / 0-)

      There are three main items in the campaign.They have the legislation ready, they know what they want to do - all they need is to flip 17 seats in the House to do it (and hold the Senate):

      Fair Pay - Equal Pay: Women deserve to be paid as much as men doing equivalent work. The minimum wage needs to be higher - and since women fill so many minimum wage jobs while also having family responsibilities, it would be a huge boost for them and everyone else.

      Family Leave, Paid Sick Time: When people have a choice between working while sick or losing their jobs, between sending sick kids to school or staying home without pay and losing their jobs to care for them, it's no choice at all.

      Quality affordable child care, better early education: In an economy where women have to work to get by, the lack of child care boils down to neglecting the kids, paying far too much, or not working and having to go on welfare. Programs like Head Start and better early education make a huge difference for the children who get them.

      By treating women and their concerns as a low priority, by putting family issues on the back burner over deficit fears and 'socialism' hysteria, America is impoverished. The rest of the civilized world understands this. Treating half the population as of somehow lesser status is on the same spectrum as the thinking that condemned unmarried women and their children to a kind of living Hell as seen in Ireland in the not so distant past. It's the same 'morality' the right wing radicals are trying to impose on the country now.

      The Democratic women in Congress get it; the SMART Democratic men do too.

      "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

      by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 02:01:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  To put it more simply (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Portia Elm, kfunk937, Gwennedd, matx

        It's about wealth and power.

        Where it is concentrated, it will be abused. Where specific groups are denied it, they will be abused. Whether they're unwed mothers in an Ireland in the grip of an abusive religion, defenseless children offered up as expendable study subjects, or people living in a state where business has free rein to do as it pleases, the results are not good.

        "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

        by xaxnar on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 03:29:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Why Cork? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Portia Elm, enhydra lutris

    Could its history as a center of rebellion against British authority motivated its selection for the experiments?

  •  It's not just in Ireland; (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    onionjim, Gwennedd, sb

    many other stories are surfacing. The popes are on trial in Brussels but shhhh

    http://beforeitsnews.com/...

  •  Vaccine trials. This just goes into dark crap. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sb

    I'll be the first to admit that the polio vaccine is a great boon to mankind. Polio vaccination is probably one of the most wonderful things medicine has done.

    But this story has chills in my spine because experimenting with vaccines can produce bad results, and I only took bio 1 and 2, so its probably even worse than I know.

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 06:33:18 PM PDT

    •  Yeah, especially since back then the only (0+ / 0-)

      way to tell if the vaccination was effective was to deliberately try to infect the kids with polio.  The fancy lab tests they have today didn't exist back then.

      You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

      by Throw The Bums Out on Sat Jun 07, 2014 at 09:42:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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