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RSV Vaccines May Increase Risk Of Rare Neurological Condition

RSV Vaccines May Increase Risk Of Rare Neurological Condition

Authored by Megan Redshaw via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),




RSV Vaccines May Increase Risk Of Rare Neurological Condition

Authored by Megan Redshaw via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),


Recently approved vaccines for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) for older adults may be linked to a rare nervous system disorder that causes the body’s immune system to attack its own nerves.

In a Feb. 29 meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, health officials presented data that appears to show a slightly elevated rate of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) among people who received RSV vaccines by Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

A data mining alert on Jan. 19 for disproportional reporting was detected by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Pfizer’s Abrysvo RSV vaccine and GBS but has not been reported to date for GSK’s RSV vaccine Arexvy, according to Dr. Tom Shimabukuro, deputy director of the CDC’s influenza division and former director of the CDC’s immunization safety office.

The FDA uses data mining to identify statistical associations between products and events in their respective safety databases. If there is disproportionate reporting of an event for a particular product, this could suggest a statistical association between the adverse event and the product.

According to data from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) presented by Dr. Shimabukuro, data show 35 reports of GBS with 18 cases attributed to Pfizer’s vaccine, Abrysvo, 16 cases attributed to GSK’s Arexvy, and one case that was not reported under either brand name.

The CDC verified 23 cases of GBS reported to VAERS as of Feb. 16—all occurring within 22 days of RSV vaccination. Of the 23 cases, 15 were attributed to Pfizer’s vaccine and eight to GSK’s vaccine. Fourteen males experienced the condition compared with nine females. There was one death reported in a 70-year-old man who developed GBS after receiving Arexvy.

“Certainly 23 cases of GBS within 22 [days] of RSV vaccination is not a ‘small signal’ given the woeful underreporting in VAERS,” Brian Hooker, chief scientific officer at Children’s Health Defense, who holds a doctorate in biochemical engineering, told The Epoch Times in an email.

“What is always missing with VAERS is a good denominator. Given that these vaccines have been distributed for less than a year (since May 31, 2023), I would expect the uptake to still be fairly low,” he added.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), underreporting is one of the main limitations of a passive surveillance system like VAERS. “The term, underreporting refers to the fact that VAERS receives reports for only a small fraction of actual adverse events,” HHS states on its website. A November 2020 article published in Vaccine showed sensitivity for capturing GBS after three different vaccines ranged from 12 to 64 percent, suggesting more cases of GBS are occurring than are being captured.

Vaccine Safety Database Suggests ‘Potential’ for Increased Rate of GBS

The CDC’s Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) suggests the “potential for an increased rate of GBS” following vaccination with GSK’s Arexvy RSV vaccine, but the agency said additional analyses are needed. There were insufficient doses of Pfizer’s Abrysvo used in the VSD to determine the risk of GBS following vaccination.

It is estimated that 10 people will experience GBS for every 1 million doses of Arexvy administered, compared with 25 cases of Abrysvo, the CDC’s vaccine advisors said during the meeting.

Due to the small number of GBS cases and the size of the prelicensure studies, Dr. Shimabukuro said it’s not known at this time whether the reported GBS cases or other neuroinflammatory events are random chance or whether RSV vaccination might increase the risk of these events. However, GBS is already included as an adverse event on both companies’ vaccine labels.

In prelicensure studies of Prizer’s RSV vaccine in adults 60 and older, two reported cases of GBS among 20,255 vaccine recipients were observed within 42 days of vaccination compared with one case during GSK’s study of 18,304 vaccine recipients.

“We’re still in the early uptake phase of these new RSV vaccines,” Dr. Shimabukuro told STAT in an interview after the meeting. “Some of these data and findings are based on small numbers of cases and relatively small numbers of doses administered,” he added. Due to “uncertainties and limitations” of early data, Dr. Shimabukuro said the agency can’t establish whether there’s an increased risk for GBS in individuals 60 and older following RSV vaccination, but better risk estimates would be forthcoming in the future.

During the meeting, Pfizer vice president Reema Mehta said the company believes its vaccine is safe but is committed to continuous monitoring and evaluation of Abrysvo’s safety to assess the possibility of vaccine-related GBS.

In an email to STAT, a spokesperson for GSK said the CDC analysis did not indicate an elevated rate of GBS among people who had received their company’s RSV vaccine, but it is designing a study to evaluate the risk of GBS after vaccination with Arexvy.

Mr. Hooker said what’s more shocking to him is the 34 deaths reported from RSV vaccine in a short period of time. The deaths were included in Dr. Shimabukuro’s presentation during the ACIP meeting.

The swine flu vaccine was taken off of the market for fewer deaths,” Mr. Hooker told The Epoch Times. “It seems that with the advent of the horrific result of the COVID-19 vaccine, the bar has been severely lowered in terms of overall safety.”

The CDC said during the meeting that its risk-benefit analysis continues to support the use of both RSV vaccines in people over 60 due to the burden of RSV in that population.

GBS Reported After Other Vaccines

The FDA, in May 2023, licensed Pfizer and GSK’s RSV vaccines for adults 60 and older. The CDC signed off on a recommendation made by its advisory panel shortly thereafter recommending the vaccine for people 60 and older only if a healthcare provider thinks vaccination would be beneficial versus making it an annual vaccine. Some vaccine advisors proposed making a universal recommendation for RSV and requested more data at the upcoming meeting scheduled in June.

According to the CDC, RSV is a common respiratory virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms. Although most people recover in a week or two, it can be serious and is more commonly diagnosed in infants.

GBS is a rare neurological disorder that occurs when a person’s immune system attacks the peripheral nervous system—a network of nerves that carry signals from the brain and spinal cord to other areas of the body. The condition begins suddenly with weakness and tingling in the hands and feet and eventually spreads throughout the body, resulting in paralysis that can leave a person unable to breathe independently.

Although most people recover from GBS, some cases are severe and can be fatal. Recovery can take several years, and it may take six months or longer after symptoms start for an individual with GBS to walk again.

Miller Fisher syndrome (MFS) and Bickerstaff brainstem encephalitis (BBE) are two variants of GBS. MFS is a nerve disease that usually involves the lower cranial and facial nerves, and BBE involves altered consciousness, problems with muscle coordination, and impaired eye movements.

Other vaccines have also been linked to GBS, including COVID-19, recombinant zoster, and influenza vaccines. CDC studies based on data from the VSD and VAERS found an increased risk of GBS among adults 18 and older following COVID-19 vaccination with the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) shot manufactured by Janssen. The FDA, in July 2021, announced revisions to the product fact sheets for J&J to include a warning related to the increased risk of GBS observed following vaccination.

Although the agency said it has not observed a similar signal with mRNA vaccines by Pfizer and Moderna, cases of GBS and its variants have been reported following vaccination with both vaccines to VAERS and by the scientific community.

Tyler Durden Wed, 03/06/2024 - 20:20

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Wendy’s teases new $3 offer for upcoming holiday

The Daylight Savings Time promotion slashes prices on breakfast.



Daylight Savings Time, or the practice of advancing clocks an hour in the spring to maximize natural daylight, is a controversial practice because of the way it leaves many feeling off-sync and tired on the second Sunday in March when the change is made and one has one less hour to sleep in.

Despite annual "Abolish Daylight Savings Time" think pieces and online arguments that crop up with unwavering regularity, Daylight Savings in North America begins on March 10 this year.

Related: Coca-Cola has a new soda for Diet Coke fans

Tapping into some people's very vocal dislike of Daylight Savings Time, fast-food chain Wendy's  (WEN)  is launching a daylight savings promotion that is jokingly designed to make losing an hour of sleep less painful and encourage fans to order breakfast anyway.

Wendy's has recently made a big push to expand its breakfast menu.

Image source: Wendy's.

Promotion wants you to compensate for lost sleep with cheaper breakfast

As it is also meant to drive traffic to the Wendy's app, the promotion allows anyone who makes a purchase of $3 or more through the platform to get a free hot coffee, cold coffee or Frosty Cream Cold Brew.

More Food + Dining:

Available during the Wendy's breakfast hours of 6 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. (which, naturally, will feel even earlier due to Daylight Savings), the deal also allows customers to buy any of its breakfast sandwiches for $3. Items like the Sausage, Egg and Cheese Biscuit, Breakfast Baconator and Maple Bacon Chicken Croissant normally range in price between $4.50 and $7.

The choice of the latter is quite wide since, in the years following the pandemic, Wendy's has made a concerted effort to expand its breakfast menu with a range of new sandwiches with egg in them and sweet items such as the French Toast Sticks. The goal was both to stand out from competitors with a wider breakfast menu and increase traffic to its stores during early-morning hours.

Wendy's deal comes after controversy over 'dynamic pricing'

But last month, the chain known for the square shape of its burger patties ignited controversy after saying that it wanted to introduce "dynamic pricing" in which the cost of many of the items on its menu will vary depending on the time of day. In an earnings call, chief executive Kirk Tanner said that electronic billboards would allow restaurants to display various deals and promotions during slower times in the early morning and late at night.

Outcry was swift and Wendy's ended up walking back its plans with words that they were "misconstrued" as an intent to surge prices during its most popular periods.

While the company issued a statement saying that any changes were meant as "discounts and value offers" during quiet periods rather than raised prices during busy ones, the reputational damage was already done since many saw the clarification as another way to obfuscate its pricing model.

"We said these menuboards would give us more flexibility to change the display of featured items," Wendy's said in its statement. "This was misconstrued in some media reports as an intent to raise prices when demand is highest at our restaurants."

The Daylight Savings Time promotion, in turn, is also a way to demonstrate the kinds of deals Wendy's wants to promote in its stores without putting up full-sized advertising or posters for what is only relevant for a few days.

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Inside The Most Ridiculous Jobs Report In Recent History: Record 1.2 Million Immigrant Jobs Added In One Month

Inside The Most Ridiculous Jobs Report In Recent History: Record 1.2 Million Immigrant Jobs Added In One Month

Last month we though that the…



Inside The Most Ridiculous Jobs Report In Recent History: Record 1.2 Million Immigrant Jobs Added In One Month

Last month we though that the January jobs report was the "most ridiculous in recent history" but, boy, were we wrong because this morning the Biden department of goalseeked propaganda (aka BLS) published the February jobs report, and holy crap was that something else. Even Goebbels would blush. 

What happened? Let's take a closer look.

On the surface, it was (almost) another blockbuster jobs report, certainly one which nobody expected, or rather just one bank out of 76 expected. Starting at the top, the BLS reported that in February the US unexpectedly added 275K jobs, with just one research analyst (from Dai-Ichi Research) expecting a higher number.

Some context: after last month's record 4-sigma beat, today's print was "only" 3 sigma higher than estimates. Needless to say, two multiple sigma beats in a row used to only happen in the USSR... and now in the US, apparently.

Before we go any further, a quick note on what last month we said was "the most ridiculous jobs report in recent history": it appears the BLS read our comments and decided to stop beclowing itself. It did that by slashing last month's ridiculous print by over a third, and revising what was originally reported as a massive 353K beat to just 229K,  a 124K revision, which was the biggest one-month negative revision in two years!

Of course, that does not mean that this month's jobs print won't be revised lower: it will be, and not just that month but every other month until the November election because that's the only tool left in the Biden admin's box: pretend the economic and jobs are strong, then revise them sharply lower the next month, something we pointed out first last summer and which has not failed to disappoint once.

To be fair, not every aspect of the jobs report was stellar (after all, the BLS had to give it some vague credibility). Take the unemployment rate, after flatlining between 3.4% and 3.8% for two years - and thus denying expectations from Sahm's Rule that a recession may have already started - in February the unemployment rate unexpectedly jumped to 3.9%, the highest since February 2022 (with Black unemployment spiking by 0.3% to 5.6%, an indicator which the Biden admin will quickly slam as widespread economic racism or something).

And then there were average hourly earnings, which after surging 0.6% MoM in January (since revised to 0.5%) and spooking markets that wage growth is so hot, the Fed will have no choice but to delay cuts, in February the number tumbled to just 0.1%, the lowest in two years...

... for one simple reason: last month's average wage surge had nothing to do with actual wages, and everything to do with the BLS estimate of hours worked (which is the denominator in the average wage calculation) which last month tumbled to just 34.1 (we were led to believe) the lowest since the covid pandemic...

... but has since been revised higher while the February print rose even more, to 34.3, hence why the latest average wage data was once again a product not of wages going up, but of how long Americans worked in any weekly period, in this case higher from 34.1 to 34.3, an increase which has a major impact on the average calculation.

While the above data points were examples of some latent weakness in the latest report, perhaps meant to give it a sheen of veracity, it was everything else in the report that was a problem starting with the BLS's latest choice of seasonal adjustments (after last month's wholesale revision), which have gone from merely laughable to full clownshow, as the following comparison between the monthly change in BLS and ADP payrolls shows. The trend is clear: the Biden admin numbers are now clearly rising even as the impartial ADP (which directly logs employment numbers at the company level and is far more accurate), shows an accelerating slowdown.

But it's more than just the Biden admin hanging its "success" on seasonal adjustments: when one digs deeper inside the jobs report, all sorts of ugly things emerge... such as the growing unprecedented divergence between the Establishment (payrolls) survey and much more accurate Household (actual employment) survey. To wit, while in January the BLS claims 275K payrolls were added, the Household survey found that the number of actually employed workers dropped for the third straight month (and 4 in the past 5), this time by 184K (from 161.152K to 160.968K).

This means that while the Payrolls series hits new all time highs every month since December 2020 (when according to the BLS the US had its last month of payrolls losses), the level of Employment has not budged in the past year. Worse, as shown in the chart below, such a gaping divergence has opened between the two series in the past 4 years, that the number of Employed workers would need to soar by 9 million (!) to catch up to what Payrolls claims is the employment situation.

There's more: shifting from a quantitative to a qualitative assessment, reveals just how ugly the composition of "new jobs" has been. Consider this: the BLS reports that in February 2024, the US had 132.9 million full-time jobs and 27.9 million part-time jobs. Well, that's great... until you look back one year and find that in February 2023 the US had 133.2 million full-time jobs, or more than it does one year later! And yes, all the job growth since then has been in part-time jobs, which have increased by 921K since February 2023 (from 27.020 million to 27.941 million).

Here is a summary of the labor composition in the past year: all the new jobs have been part-time jobs!

But wait there's even more, because now that the primary season is over and we enter the heart of election season and political talking points will be thrown around left and right, especially in the context of the immigration crisis created intentionally by the Biden administration which is hoping to import millions of new Democratic voters (maybe the US can hold the presidential election in Honduras or Guatemala, after all it is their citizens that will be illegally casting the key votes in November), what we find is that in February, the number of native-born workers tumbled again, sliding by a massive 560K to just 129.807 million. Add to this the December data, and we get a near-record 2.4 million plunge in native-born workers in just the past 3 months (only the covid crash was worse)!

The offset? A record 1.2 million foreign-born (read immigrants, both legal and illegal but mostly illegal) workers added in February!

Said otherwise, not only has all job creation in the past 6 years has been exclusively for foreign-born workers...

Source: St Louis Fed FRED Native Born and Foreign Born

... but there has been zero job-creation for native born workers since June 2018!

This is a huge issue - especially at a time of an illegal alien flood at the southwest border...

... and is about to become a huge political scandal, because once the inevitable recession finally hits, there will be millions of furious unemployed Americans demanding a more accurate explanation for what happened - i.e., the illegal immigration floodgates that were opened by the Biden admin.

Which is also why Biden's handlers will do everything in their power to insure there is no official recession before November... and why after the election is over, all economic hell will finally break loose. Until then, however, expect the jobs numbers to get even more ridiculous.

Tyler Durden Fri, 03/08/2024 - 13:30

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Shipping company files surprise Chapter 7 bankruptcy, liquidation

While demand for trucking has increased, so have costs and competition, which have forced a number of players to close.



The U.S. economy is built on trucks.

As a nation we have relatively limited train assets, and while in recent years planes have played an expanded role in moving goods, trucks still represent the backbone of how everything — food, gasoline, commodities, and pretty much anything else — moves around the country.

Related: Fast-food chain closes more stores after Chapter 11 bankruptcy

"Trucks moved 61.1% of the tonnage and 64.9% of the value of these shipments. The average shipment by truck was 63 miles compared to an average of 640 miles by rail," according to the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics 2023 numbers.

But running a trucking company has been tricky because the largest players have economies of scale that smaller operators don't. That puts any trucking company that's not a massive player very sensitive to increases in gas prices or drops in freight rates.

And that in turn has led a number of trucking companies, including Yellow Freight, the third-largest less-than-truckload operator; J.J. & Sons Logistics, Meadow Lark, and Boateng Logistics, to close while freight brokerage Convoy shut down in October.

Aside from Convoy, none of these brands are household names. but with the demand for trucking increasing, every company that goes out of business puts more pressure on those that remain, which contributes to increased prices.

Demand for trucking has continued to increase.

Image source: Shutterstock

Another freight company closes and plans to liquidate

Not every bankruptcy filing explains why a company has gone out of business. In the trucking industry, multiple recent Chapter 7 bankruptcies have been tied to lawsuits that pushed otherwise successful companies into insolvency.

In the case of TBL Logistics, a Virginia-based national freight company, its Feb. 29 bankruptcy filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Virginia appears to be death by too much debt.

"In its filing, TBL Logistics listed its assets and liabilities as between $1 million and $10 million. The company stated that it has up to 49 creditors and maintains that no funds will be available for unsecured creditors once it pays administrative fees," Freightwaves reported.

The company's owners, Christopher and Melinda Bradner, did not respond to the website's request for comment.

Before it closed, TBL Logistics specialized in refrigerated and oversized loads. The company described its business on its website.

"TBL Logistics is a non-asset-based third-party logistics freight broker company providing reliable and efficient transportation solutions, management, and storage for businesses of all sizes. With our extensive network of carriers and industry expertise, we streamline the shipping process, ensuring your goods reach their destination safely and on time."

The world has a truck-driver shortage

The covid pandemic forced companies to consider their supply chain in ways they never had to before. Increased demand showed the weakness in the trucking industry and drew attention to how difficult life for truck drivers can be.

That was an issue HBO's John Oliver highlighted on his "Last Week Tonight" show in October 2022. In the episode, the host suggested that the U.S. would basically start to starve if the trucking industry shut down for three days.

"Sorry, three days, every produce department in America would go from a fully stocked market to an all-you-can-eat raccoon buffet," he said. "So it’s no wonder trucking’s a huge industry, with more than 3.5 million people in America working as drivers, from port truckers who bring goods off ships to railyards and warehouses, to long-haul truckers who move them across the country, to 'last-mile' drivers, who take care of local delivery." 

The show highlighted how many truck drivers face low pay, difficult working conditions and, in many cases, crushing debt.

"Hundreds of thousands of people become truck drivers every year. But hundreds of thousands also quit. Job turnover for truckers averages over 100%, and at some companies it’s as high as 300%, meaning they’re hiring three people for a single job over the course of a year. And when a field this important has a level of job satisfaction that low, it sure seems like there’s a huge problem," Oliver shared.

The truck-driver shortage is not just a U.S. problem; it's a global issue, according to

"IRU’s 2023 driver shortage report has found that over three million truck driver jobs are unfilled, or 7% of total positions, in 36 countries studied," the global transportation trade association reported. 

"With the huge gap between young and old drivers growing, it will get much worse over the next five years without significant action."

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