GUEST BLOG: Bryan Bruce – Misery, Death and Conspiracy Theories


As of last evening there have been 778 confirmed cases of Measles in Auckland and there is a child in Starship hospital in a critical condition as a result of this totally preventable disease.

Yet some people refuse to vaccinate their children because of misinformation – so here are the facts .

About 1 in 10 people with measles will need hospital treatment and it’s a disease that can in some cases produce swelling of the brain resulting in death or permanent brain damage.

Measles during pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage, premature labour and low birth-weight babies.

Other complications include ear infections (which can cause permanent hearing loss),diarrhoea,pneumonia and seizures

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Up to 30% of people with measles will develop complications – usually children under 5 and adults over the age of 20.

You are contagious 5 days before to 5 days after rash onset, counting the day of rash onset as day 1.

Measles is highly contagious and affects both children and adults. If you think you have measles, it’s important to call your GP’s surgery before visiting your doctor to avoid you spreading the virus in the waiting room.

If you’re feeling sick, you should stay away from work, school or public places, to help prevent putting other people at risk.

This also applies if you or a family member aren’t fully immunised and may have been in contact with someone with measles.

By isolating yourself you will help protect vulnerable people including babies, pregnant women, cancer patients and others who are unable to be immunised and for whom the impact of the disease can be devastating.


In New Zealand, if you were born in 1969 or later, you can get the measles vaccine for free.

Two doses of the measles vaccine provides the most effective protection for yourself, your family and the wider community. After one dose of the MMR vaccine, about 95% of people are protected from measles. After two doses, more than 99% people are protected.

As with most medical treatments a very few people can suffer adverse affects. You are entitled to informed consent – not illinformed consent .Please discuss any concerns with your doctor.

Lastly if you are one of those people who believe in conspiracy theories such as our Ministry of Health is deliberately spreading misinformation , or you are a believer in struck off doctor Andrew Wakefield and his iil-founded discredited and dangerous propoganda that there is a link between vaccines and autism then please do not comment here as I will delete it.

If you think my ruling somehow violates your right to free speech- tough. Find somehwere else to publish your conspiracy theories. The Bill of Rights may entitle you to your opinion (however unfounded). It also entitles me to reject it and does not require me to publish it.

Bryan Bruce is one of NZs most respected documentary makers and public intellectuals who has tirelessly exposed NZs neoliberal economic settings as the main cause for social issues.


  1. As the PM has said on Morning Report she believes peoples attitudes to vaccination are only a small part of the problem. Access and poverty issues are key. It may as always be convenient to find the anti vaxxers as some kind of evil to blame but 95% coverage has always been elusive. If this is deemed necessary then it should be free and easy to access. Enough of the demonising

      • Sam, the mmr is a live vaccine (well, actually 3 vaccines). What do you reckon happens?
        The more people vaccinate, the more outbreaks happen.
        I can’t even begin to tell you how wrong your assumptions are.

        • “Live” vaccines like MMR are attenuated or weakened to not cause disease, hence they don’t cause disease as that would defeat the purpose?

  2. I happen to fully agree about vaccination with MMR being overwhelmingly a good thing.
    A no brainer.
    I wonder at this new moral authoritarianism we are seeing though, it is rather revolting.
    Don’t the left like to get on their high horse and ban stuff!
    I think it turns out the actual antivax demographic are mostly inner city well to do labour type soccer moms.


    • Your caps look key appears to be stuck on Michelle.
      A small subset of people cant be vaccinated, very young or immune compromised for example, hence the importance of everyone else being vaccinated to protect them.
      Discuss with your doctor for your
      If you can’t be vaccinated, your only protection is everyone else..

  4. I am vaccinated and so is my family, because I am a scientist and I believe the benefits far outweigh the risks.
    Unfortunately many people can only go on what their government tells them to do.
    The problem with that is that most western government have a long and rich history of lying to their populace about many things including health issues and science.
    I’m not sure demonizing anti vaxers is entirely fair.

    • Just for fun I made an OIA request to ACC asking how many claims had been accepted for vaccine injury since such records began.
      Since 2005 there have been 1376 successful claims.
      Now, when was the last time you ever saw a headline in MSM in NZ along the lines of…” Child left severely brain damaged by Vaccine!!!”?
      You’d think that just one of those 1376 would have come forward to explain why they would think twice about having another child vaccinated, wouldn’t you?

      • Selective facts.
        Which vaccines were involved? How many inoculations have been given since 2005?
        How many people died of smallpox or contracted polio in that time?

      • is there figures for the people not scared for life because they have been vaccinated . Nothing is without risk but all actions have to be balanced against the good or bad effect

  5. When Jacinda Ardern and David Clarke removed immunisation targets 18 months ago, they were both warned of the consequences of an outbreak.

    Ardern and Clark removed those immunisation targets amongst many targets in the public sector because they wanted to avoid metrics by which the Labour-led government could be measured by.

    Well, we have a measure now:

    How many children and vulnerable people have Jacinda and Clarke killed through their malfeasance and incompetence?

    THERE is your “perverse outcomes” Labour. Measured in dead children.

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