Sep 21, 2023
This episode is sponsored by KyurMD.com – technically advanced medical apparel.
In the second part of the "We Want Them Infected" series, Dr. Jonathan Howard delves into the allure of the anti-vaccine movement among doctors. He explores the psychological factors, including the pursuit of fame and financial gain, that drive some doctors to embrace contrarian views. Audience capture, a phenomenon where public personalities echo the sentiments of their followers, is discussed as a key factor that reinforces extreme stances and perpetuates misinformation. The episode draws parallels to how public figures like Donald Trump can also fall prey to audience capture.
Looking for something specific? Here you go!
00:01 - Introduction to Part Two of "We Want Them Infected"
00:26 - Discussion on the allure of contrarianism and audience capture
01:56 - Comparing audience capture to Donald Trump's changing stances
03:01 - Strategies to prevent falling into the trap of audience capture
03:43 - The importance of humility and openness to correction
06:16 - Engaging respectfully in disagreements on social media
08:12 - The "IKEA effect" and recognizing biases in our ideas
10:07 - Examining arguments used by anti-vaxxers against COVID vaccines
14:15 - Critiquing the demand for more randomized controlled trials
16:01 - The shifting goalposts of critics
18:14 - Reactions of doctors mentioned in the book
20:53 - The consequences of misinformation and what gives hope
24:43 - Encouragement for doctors to speak out against medical misinformation
More on Dr. Howard:
A distinguished author, Dr. Howard has penned several authoritative textbooks on neurology. Notably, he is the writer behind Cognitive Errors and Diagnostic Mistakes: A Case-Based Guide to Critical Thinking in Medicine. Well before the pandemic emerged, Dr. Howard had a deep-rooted interest in vaccines and the counter-vaccine movement. Preceding the global health crisis, he was a co-author for a book chapter titled The Anti-Vaccine Movement: A Litany of Fallacy and Errors.
Throughout the pandemic, he has been actively contributing to the discourse on the mainstream acceptance of anti-vaccine sentiments within the medical field.
His writings on this matter can be found on Science Based Medicine. Moreover, he has collaborated on research papers focused on the neurological implications of COVID-19 patients and the vaccination process for individuals with multiple sclerosis.
Find Dr. Howard on his LinkedIn.
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