Eileen Dannemann is the director of the National Coalition of Organized Women (NCOW). It’s not so much an organization, really, as … well, Dannemann, mostly. She has at least figured that presenting herself as an organization lends her rants an air of authority: She is also the founder and apparently sole member of Progressive Convergence and the Vaccine Liberation Army, as well as co-founder of the now defunct organization Slave to the Metal. (Well, there is, in fact, a cofounder of NCOW, one Leland Lehrman, who also appears as Mother Media: People, Planet, Policy, which ostensibly gives you a “balanced view of politics and nature” – so balanced, in fact, that he had to put it in his organization’s name; otherwise you might not have noticed). What’s NCOW? According to Dannemann:
“The National Coalition of Organized Women is a verb, an organizing force, a coalescing energy based on the Unified Field and quantum physics which defines it. NCOW has no matrix, no special tax status, no agenda. It can not [sic] be found because it is everywhere and nowhere at the same time. All activities arise from the ‘individual’, his/her personal connection to Source and the enlightened spiritual impulses deriving there from. NCOW is simply “individuals” spending their own time and money as individuals speaking up for progressive change and a new vision for America … and the world”
That’s … deep. At least she uses the organizations as a way of promoting various screeds such as “A Treatise on the final American Era and new World Order marked by loss of personal and national consciousness.” Her main schtick seems to be that (as facilitated by the always-nefarious government) institutions of higher learning and research have become tools for Big Pharma. Thus, you shouldn’t trust anyone affiliated with them for health-related information and rather listen to … her, of course. Dannemann is one of those independent researchers who isn’t only free from government and Big Pharma influence; just to make sure she’s unbiased she has taken care not to be swayed by the allure of science, facts and evidence – reality, really – either, relying ultimately, and exclusively, on herself and her very own powers of intuition. Accoring to herself, she has a B.A. in psychology and has been “a practitioner of Transcendental Meditation since 1973”, so she is at least unencumbered by any relationship to any expertise relevant to her claims.
So, what’s she all about? Well, Dannemann is a hardcore anti-vaccine conspiracy theorist, but she also writes about genetically modified food (NCOW is described as the “grandmother of many of the anti-GMO coalitions”). She is, for instance, the source of the idea that the H1N1 vaccine is linked to 700 percent increase in miscarriages (promptly promoted by NaturalNews – at least Mike Adams provided several sources … which all turned out to be Dannemann and her various organizations). What’s her evidence? Well, Dannemann has been dumpster diving in the VAERS database as well as producing a list of 72 women who say they had the flu vaccine and then, some time after that, had a miscarriage (based on people voluntarily responding to ads placed on “selected” websites without any controls for accuracy, and seemingly without any control for double counting or anything else). There is no statistical analysis, no context, no nothing (and the number is way below random chance given the number of flu shots). In addition, though, she lists something she calls “statistical correction” and describes as “[b]ased on analysis of data from two different sources ... H1N1 vaccination program contributed to estimated 1,588 miscarriages and stillbirths,” coauthored by her, one Paul G. King, and Gary S. Goldman, whom we have encountered before. The correction is based on assuming that her list is accurate, and the assumption (pulled from thin air, it seems) that 85% of the actual cases were not reported. She also cites one of her press releases in which she accuses the CDC of falsifying reports based on a study by Goldman, which is based on … yup, Dannemann’s anecdotes.
Other than that, her website includes every significant antivaccine trope in the book, including blaming vaccines for shaken baby syndrome and links to studies by Mark and David Geier.
Diagnosis: Incoherently crazy denialist and crank magnet. Despite the rather obvious and blatant display of loon she has, apparently, managed to gain some influence among her like-minded.