Rich people are stupid

The people most likely to refuse to have their children vaccinated tend to be white, well-educated and affluent, researchers report.

Either that or the American higher education system is even more ludicrous than we thought.

26 thoughts on “Rich people are stupid”

  1. Also more likely to indulge in crystal healing, aromatherapy and anal jetwashing. The upper classes are consistently more religious and irrational than the lower classes, who just get on with life.

  2. You can’t send your kids to public (as in state) schools in the US without having them vaccinated. Amazingly enough, rich people are the only ones able to afford that.

  3. Dave’s probably tracked down the real reason for the correlation.

    But isn’t it true that a small minority of unvaccinated people in the population will still have pretty good protection from the general vaccination level, because the disease won’t get a hold anywhere? The problem only comes if that minority gets too large?

    In which case the non-vaccinators could be gaming the system, enjoying the benefits of herd vaccination whilst avoiding the (admittedly small) risks of the actual vaccination.

  4. Yes, there are real risks. Violent allergic reactions that kill people. Astonishingly rare but both the US and UK have compensation schemes set up to pay for those few unfortunates it does happen to. That the schemes exist is all the proof we need that the possibility is there.

  5. But isn’t it true that a small minority of unvaccinated people in the population will still have pretty good protection from the general vaccination level, because the disease won’t get a hold anywhere? The problem only comes if that minority gets too large?

    Yes. The disease just can’t become epidemic if too many potential carriers are immune to infection.

    However, there are a number of issues with refining the analysis.

    Nobody is exactly sure what the herd immunity level is, not least because it is dependent on the infection characteristics of each disease (and each variety of each etc.) Also, few, if any, vaccines are 100% effective. Therefore you are also endangering people who sensibly went off and got vaccinated.

    Mr Black – anecdata but the most ill I have ever been (at least that I remember being) was after a bad reaction to the bubonic plague vaccine. Thanks, Saddam!

  6. True.. It must also be stated that most of those allergic reactions are caused by oversensitivity to the actual viral component. ( allergy to the components of the suspension fluid is even rarer.)

    Which means that if the child would have been infected with the real disease, it would most likely have died from “complications”.

    This is the price we pay for the flexibility of our immune system: It contains Quantum, and some people *will* end up with the short end.

  7. White, well educated, affluent people are more likely to read ‘research’ and question authority.

    That much of the ‘research’ is gizzagrant fairy tale is the problem, not that white, well educated, affluent people are better informed and act according to the information.

  8. I know someone with joint honours in physics and philosophy (first class) and a higher degree in mathematical logic who has refused to have his children vaccinated. He’s a very bright chap in his sphere of expertise. Outside of his sphere of expertise, he falls for many of the fashionable nostrums – left-wing politics, eco-doomsterism, organic food, anti-globalism, CND, anti-vaccination hysteria, etc, etc.

  9. IanB:

    Also more likely to indulge in crystal healing, aromatherapy and anal jetwashing. The upper classes are consistently more religious and irrational than the lower classes, who just get on with life.

    Tim was talking about the rich, not the upper classes. “Crystal healing, aromatherapy and anal jetwashing” are, as far as I’m aware, fads associated with people who have more money than sense – and there are such people in all social classes. I know of no evidence that the upper classes are more religious or more irrational than the lower orders. Do tell if you do.

  10. There’s probably some limited connection (or, at least, similarity) with the reports of engineers being overly represented amongst religiously inspired terrorists (and other forms of nut job fanatic.)

    My surmise, being an engineer, it this is because a lot of engineering, as opposed to hard science, involves finding the easy and functional, if imprecise, answer. In days gone past, often from large books of tables. Nowadays we have the intertubes. Nut job religion, like anti-vcxx and other woo movements, gives easy answers.

  11. This report is from California concerning California.
    The affluent, well-educated, white hippies tend to gravitate to California.
    So: is this a representative sample of the whole community?

  12. I did read a report years ago regarding herd immunity. In the population studied it worked out as 93%.
    Thats 93% vaccinated in order to protect others.

    And the US is a country where they believed a 93% vaccination rate with both adults and children was impossible.

    Think of the Measles issue here in the UK. Parents not having kids vaccinated because of a belief – and there have been enough unvaccinated to reduce protection.

  13. Theo-

    I’ve found these absurdities to be a general part of the current bourgeois (“middle” class, whatever) culture.

    Regarding John B’s claim that they’re more likely to read research, they’re actually more likely to read books on Mindfulness, Feng Shui, Reiki or whatever the latest bullshit is, then try to impose it on everyone else.

  14. A young relative didn’t have the usual childhood triple-vaccination that there was a lot of fuss about some years ago – the Wakefield/Blair scandal. The reason was a contra-indication to one of them in our family medical history. So he simply had the two that there was no contra-indication about. I must admit that this simple solution left me baffled at the fervent denials that the NHS could give the vaccinations individually.

  15. P.S. It’s people like him who are put at risk if arseholes stop their children having the vaccinations for no good reason. Maybe suing the arseholes should be allowed. Or encouraged. Or compulsory. Or would it be simpler just to string ’em up?

  16. There have been measles outbreaks in places like Swansea, where the G hardly circulates.

    But none in Primrose Hill or Hampstead! Perhaps one or other parent surrepticiously got the kids the triple vaccine anyway?

  17. IanB

    You have moved from the rich to the upper class to the bourgeois, middle class and whatever, because you are spouting nothing more than vague prejudice.

    I wouldn’t know about mindfulness, but the people I have seen buying books on reiki and feng shui are lower class.

  18. “It’s just that every country other than the US manages this . . .”

    And we’d be managing it also, *without* an NHS analogue, if we weren’t stuck with a relic of the NRA/wage controls era (1930s to WW2) legislation that give major tax breaks to medical ‘insurance’ costs if they’re provided as compensation by an employer.

    The simplest way to unfuck our medical system would simply have been to do away with that tax break – not going to happen due to ‘YOU CAN’T TAKE AWAY MY FREE SHIT’.

    But we could have simply given the same break to individuals for their medical spending (including insurance) – then it would cost you the same to go through your job or to buy your own, portable, policy. And you’d likely have seen the ’employer-provided insurance lock’ fade away.

    But that wouldn’t empower a whole new generation of government agencies so that’ll never happen.

  19. So Much For Subtlety

    I have a theory. I might call it the Theory of the Conservation of Idiocy. It says that there is only so much rationality that a society can maintain. People need a certain level of irrational thinking. I don’t know why but they do.

    Which means that as belief in Christianity has declined, belief in Astral Healing has gone up. I would be willing to bet there is a direct and inverse relationship between sightings of angels and sightings of UFOs.

    So we used to have our idiocy confined nicely to a part of society where it could do little harm and a great deal of good. Even today Christians, by and large, make life better for the people who live around them. But now the nutters are off the reservation and we have to live with the very real consequences.

    The only problem with this is that Idiocy seems to be increasing.

  20. @ Agammamon
    There used to be a tax-deduction for private medical insurance because that saved the state more money than it cost.
    I expect lefties to ignore facts not righties.

  21. @ SMFS
    There is a flaw in your, unusually for you, perscipacious comment.
    Any relationship between the sighting of Angels and of UFOs is unknown for two reasons – the massive increase in the reporting of unreliable data outside the village and a few centuries between the decline in the reports of visions of angels and the sightings of UFOs.
    “Even today Christians, by and large, make life better for the people who live around them.” Well, duh! If they don’t they aren’t Christians.

  22. > “or the American higher education system is even more ludicrous than we thought”

    Entirely possible. A lot of US students are held back a year and forced to repeat; sometimes several times. At least that’s what I infer: I’ve just seen a pop-up advert promising “sexy schoolgirls” and they look about 30.

  23. John77

    Actually, SMFS makes more than a few perspicacious comments and usually expresses them trenchantly. I may not always agree with his comments, but I read them with interest. Part of the appeal of Tim’s blog is that it isn’t an echo chamber and that there is usually a variety of opinions and arguments in the comments.

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