I'm NOT an anti-vaccer - I don't believe any conspiracy-theory nonsense without proof, and I've been vaccinated for just about everything, and I get my flu shot every year.
However, as I've said repeatedly, from the beginning of COVID, in many posts past - though a vaccine is our best and quickest hope - the first vaccine is not always the best.
Mind you, I'm an independent contractor for an independent marketing company, who does market research for pharmaceutical companies, both big and small. In other words, I transcribe the interviews between the market researchers for varying manufacturers and PBMs, both public and private insurance company payers, and clinicians (both providers and pharmacists), for a living.
That is not to knock all of big pharma, they're not all unethical and greedy, some are just trying to find ways of doing business in this messed-up healthcare system that we have - but some are - any company or corporation is only as good as its leadership.
Now - in this case, with the new vaccines, I still have a lot of questions that have not, or perhaps cannot, be answered, and I am cautious of not knowing what side effects may result in the real world, outside the controlled clinical environment of a controlled clinical study, as well as about long-term side effects.
These new vaccines are being rush-pushed out of some sort of race competition between corporations for the biggest piece of the profit pie, and not even trying to hide it.
And some employers and/or politicians pushing for it are clearly just trying to push people back into the workplace, despite the fact that many large corporations minimized the risk of COVID from the get-go, and have never provided their employees with the proper PPE.
I'm especially cautious when politicians push it - case in point - I don't care that Mike Pence got his vaccine live on TV. That does absolutely nothing for me, because I find it wildly inappropriate for politicians to back one company versus another; in fact, if anything, I start wondering about their hedge fund shares and stock holdings lol.
Thus, the fact that he took Pfizer's vaccine makes me even more skeptical of Pfizer, not less - especially considering Mike Pence helped push the "COVID hoax" and mask-wearing conspiracy nonsense - as IF it makes sense that the government wanting you to cover your face with a mask somehow invades your privacy, rather than make you more anonymous?!?.
I mean, these are people who have proven repeatedly that they don't care about your health and safety, they just want your labor and your vote - they don't care, if you drop dead from COVID in the process - oh well, they still made money and/or got your vote.
(To Biden and Harris' credit - neither has mentioned or pushed for any vaccine - just a task force being created - at least not yet, we shall see.)
Also, I want a choice of vaccine - I don't want my insurance company, its PBM, the drug manufacturers, employers, and/or especially politicians telling me what vaccine I get, just because of some rebating deals made on the back-end, hedge-fund holdings, or lobbyist promises.
No - I care about what group panels of clinicians and research scientists say about which is the safest and most effective, not what saved the company a few extra bucks and increased their profit margin.
At present, I'm still leaning toward Moderna's vaccine, if I get a choice - based on the evidence presented in their clinical trials thus far that I've shared in earlier posts; not just because they're smaller pharma, but because they did a better job of subsegmenting the population into subpopulations and tracked them, and were very careful with regards to reproductive side effects.
However, simply put, I'm still not going to get a shot of sh*t yet lol - even if it's "free!"
Sorry to be crass, but unlike what has happened to half of America, in recent years, I don't trust idle gossip AKA propaganda about anyone or anything, whether on social media or real life.
I don't care how many times somebody repeats something, just because someone says something a million times on Twitter, and it's shared a million times on Twitter, that doesn't make it fact, nor does it make a lie become truth.
I will still always look for evidence - and I have become virtually immune to any power-of-suggestion BS, on social media or in real life.
That is both because I have personally been the subject of lie-filled gossip/smear campaign fueled by a guilty few who projected their own misdeeds onto me, which nevertheless caught fire and affected my life and reputation irrevocably, as well as also because I saw the same happen to others, in recent years, political or not.
Thus, it's all about the actual evidence rather than speculation and gossip, or even political leanings, with me - believe me, I've made the mistake of thinking I could trust a fellow lib before, based on politics, and that is not always the case.
(Though I will say, just in my personal experience, I have found more liberals to honest, kind, and ethical than I have conservatives. )
Regardless, this issue is simply evidence that we don't have yet - and likely won't have, for some time.
I understand those who say, "at least it's something," but that "something" might be a trade-off for side effects that did not present themselves in a controlled environment during the study, too, in the real world.
PS - May I just add, here, pharmaceutical companies - it really irks me to no end - as I understand it does more professional people in this field than me (and apparently, an international complaint) - that some drugs and vaccines can still get FDA, EMA, NICE/MHRA, SMA/ANSES, AIFA, SMA, and BfARM approval - without having done a direct, head-to-head trial study against their competitors, within the same drug class, for the same indication or condition.
Now, I understand that sometimes, those other drugs aren't launched yet when your study begins and studies typically take at least 3 to 5 years.
I also understand, that in this case, there was nothing to compare the vaccines to but placebo or drugs from a totally different class for the condition, like steroids.
HOWEVER, once you DO have two or more drugs or vaccines on the market for the same condition, within the same drug class, stop being sneaky, roundabout chicken sh*ts lol - if you stand behind how effective and safe you claim your product is, then for the love of God, either do or allow a freakin' direct, head-to-head comparison study using your competitor's product!
At the very least, use the current standard of care as placebo, as opposed to a sugar pill, or a drug from a totally separate class?!?
You do have the option of doing a non-inferior direct head-to-head study, mind you - but everyone is afraid to do that, for fear the "non-inferior" study will actually prove your product inferior, which will affect pricing ;)
If you, or your competitor, can't/won't do it for fear of proprietary/legality issues - both could allow an independent academic study, perhaps?
And yet even though you haven't done a direct, head-to-head comparison study, you have the audacity to imagine it's okay to charge $100,000 for your "me-too" drug, in the exact same drug class and category as many others, which does not cure, nor even modify the actual disease, just relieves symptoms, and only half the time, at that?
Oh, I don't think so - commercial insurance companies, Medicare, and Medicaid are getting wise to that game and becoming increasingly irritated with it - so don't expect to get your $100K drug approved and on the formulary much longer, if you don't do a head-to-head non-inferior trial study, at the very least, going forward!
*Hop* - off my soapbox rant, now :)