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Dan Olmsted, Editor of the blog "Age of Autism" and former wire service reporter, offers up an interesting (and pretty thoughtful) analysis, titled, "Dan Olmsted On Why Progressives Don't Get Autism",  pointing out what he thinks is a blind spot for many on the left: the issue of questioning current vaccine policy, especially as it relates to possible links with autism. Olmsted writes:

It’s doubly disappointing to see traditionally progressive outlets – from Salon to Daily Kos to The Atlantic to National Public Radio and PBS – ignore the evidence presented in our book and so many other places, twist the facts they can’t deny, belittle those who believe otherwise including beleaguered autism parents, and glibly trumpet tired reassurances that the concern over vaccines has been "asked and answered," that "study after study" has refuted any relation, and that continuing to point out disturbing patterns of evidence to the contrary endangers children and infants.

Wherever you stand on this issue, or if you firmly think it's a non-issue, Omlsted points out some troubling behavior in the public health complex that should concern progressives.  More and a link to the piece is below the fold.

Personally, I'm (along with former head of the National Institute of Health, Dr. Bernadine Healy) in "the jury is still out" camp on this high decible debate within and outside the autism community.
http://www.cbsnews.com/...  

This debate's been going on at volume 10 for a long, long time now and, despite huge PR efforts on the part of government, trade organizations and the very public discreditation of a critical study by a British researcher suggesting a link between MMR immunizations and autism, it doesn't seem to be going away anytime soon.  I think Olmsted hits on some of the reasons why in the following passage.  

One key part of the progressive agenda of the last century has been improving health – and especially children’s health – through mass vaccination against deadly diseases.  And now come a new group of people, autism parents, who allegedly want to roll back all this progress so long in the making. And how do they want to accomplish this nefarious (and nebulous) goal? By questioning the consensus that genes cause autism, and by claiming that the environment – and plausibly some aspect of the very same mass vaccination campaign -- is implicated in autism’s epidemic rise. Cleverly labeling these concerns "anti-vaccine" and, implicitly, anti-progress, makes it easy to ignore a fundamental truth -- that every ideology including progressivism can go too far, get hijacked by forces that should be its natural enemies, and fail to understand what is required at a particular historical moment.

I disagree with a lot of the Age of Autism people in that I think there is great value in researching the genetic angle because I think we're looking at different "autisms", or "autism sub-types", which genetics can help us understand better.  A lot of the current science is summarized here: http://www.autismspeaks.org/...

By way of a disclaimer, I vaccinated both my kids (one with autism, one typical) and think immunization is an absolutely critical tool for public health worldwide. I've never been involved in any litigation on the issue but, like Olmsted, I am on the record having registered my discomfort and unease with the current construct that I think too closely links vaccine promotion and safety as well as the all too cozy relationship between our public health officials and corporate interests who have a "one size fits all" and "more is always better" philosophical underpinning. Olmsted hits on this issue below. If his example is not a revolving door, I don't know what is.

Government needs to untangle itself from the interests and involvements with private industry and technological development that have tied it down like Gulliver, and take back control of science and policy. It needs to get past the gerberding of government, in which revolving regulators like CDC director Julie Gerberding went from recommending vaccines one day to running the vaccine division at Merck 365 days later.

 

I'm also not yet convinced that the epidemiological studies done so far tell us as much as we need to know about the complex biology of immune dysfunction in some autism subtypes. I also believe that the current recommended immunization schedule shouldn't be "off limits" for public debate and robust study.  The mainstream advocacy organization, Autism Speaks, puts the issue this way:

It's important to keep in mind that the lack of a relationship between vaccines and autism in large population studies does not mean that there cannot be any relationship in some individual instances. Immunizations can, in rare cases, have adverse consequences; this is well-known. It remains scientifically plausible that the challenge to the immune system resulting from a vaccine (or other immunological challenges) could, in susceptible individuals, have adverse consequences for the developing brain.

http://www.autismspeaks.org/...

As a progressive, I strongly believe in public health initiatives all over the world to aggressively fight disease but think that a robust system of checks and balances is not what it ought to be in the United States.  It worries me greatly that for some definable, and perhaps not so small, subset of kids with immune system vulnerabilites  (like Hannah Poling and others), it's plausible that some components or timing of the recommended immunization schedule may be doing more harm than good.
http://www.cbsnews.com/...

Anyhow, I think Olmsted's piece is worth a read, wherever you stand on the issue. Since he called out Kos, I figured folks here may want to know about it. Olmsted also "piles on" a bit...

The best major-media reporting recently on this issue has come from conservative Fox News, which has taken to running almost weekly reports. The network seems to have been prompted by the government’s strange concession in Vaccine Court – that autism was not "caused" by vaccines but autistic symptoms "resulted" from the vaccinations – which a reporter called "fishy legal language."

Is that really what progressives and mainstream journalists want? To watch the most important health problem of our time covered best by the most conservative news outlet in the country?

Here's the entire piece:

http://www.ageofautism.com/...

Originally posted to Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:26 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Bullshit. (45+ / 0-)
    Their is no evidence about vaccines and autism.  How dare you call out people for basing decisions on science.

    My partner has a 12 year old "high functioning" autistic son.  You can kiss my progressive ass.

    Most people do the best we can. Blaming vaccines is bullshit.  Debunked conspiracy theory.  

    Learning to love cat food and to call it steak. Democrats 2012!

    by TomP on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:31:14 AM PST

    •  And for the umpteenth time, it isn't "parents of (17+ / 0-)

      autistic children" continuing to beat the anti-vax drum as a monolith - it is some parents of autistic children.

      As a parent of 2 kids on the spectrum, that particular framing always grates on me.

      "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

      by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:01:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My sister (no kids) is anti-vaxx (6+ / 0-)

        I (one spectrum son) am pro-vaxx.

        Heck, my brother and sis-in-law are expecting their first (his second) this spring.  I sent them the CDC link about pertussis vaxx and boosters for adults and older kids.

        Totally pro vaxx.  

        Show me the POLICY!

        by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:09:48 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Parents of kids on the spectrum have differing (6+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          chimpy, elmo, Fabian, trashablanca, TomP, Jane Lew

          opinions on stuff - who knew?

          Sorry for the snark (which is directed at diarist and not at you) :-)

          Like I said, lumping us all into 1 category just pisses me off.

          "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

          by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:15:21 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I hope bother and sis live in pro-vax community (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fabian, raptavio, ebohlman

          With the anti-vaxxers getting such publicity, and with so many parents treating the superstition like it were science, they pose a real risk to herd immunity. Until kids too young to receive a vaccine themselves, they rely on the disease-free status of all of their neighbors. Without the herd immunity of a successful vaccination program, even families who do vaccinate are put at risk by those who don't.

          If I were about to have kids, I would be careful to live somewhere with healthy neighbors. I cannot find a national map of where the anti-vaxxers prevail, so I think you could only find statistics one county at a time. The CDC would be overloaded if it had to track every outbreak of magical thinking, but this particular strain is a real public health hazard.

          Why is there a Confederate Flag flying in Afghanistan?

          by chimpy on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:37:49 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not sure I have ever managed (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            chimpy, homogenius, raptavio

            to convince new parents that their infants should not be passed around to every friend and relative until they are 4 months old.

            1. They have developed a fair bit of immune response by then.
            1. They withstand the rigors of infection better then.

            The younger they are when they contract rotavirus, RSV or anything else - the greater chance they'll land in the hospital with dehydration or respiratory distress.

            And if anyone has a cough or cold, then let them admire your precious child from a safe distance.  A cold can make an adult feel utterly miserable, and it's even worse for young infants because they don't mouth breathe yet.  Pay close attention - infants breathe through their noses only for many weeks.

            Show me the POLICY!

            by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 12:52:23 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  oops - should be 'brother and sis...' (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Fabian

            (no presumptions intended regarding sibling amity)

            Why is there a Confederate Flag flying in Afghanistan?

            by chimpy on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 12:56:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  That framing is the problem (0+ / 0-)

          Anti-vax vs. pro-vax. Sounds like W and his "you're either with us or against us" way of looking at the world.

          All vaccines aren't good for all people. Ask the people whose babies were killed by early formulations of Rotashield, babies that were probably not at any risk of significant harm from rotavirus in the first place.

          There are risks to all vaccines, but in most cases the risk of the disease the vaccine prevents is greater than the risk of the vaccine. That's as it should be, and that's why most vaccines make sense for most people. But vaccines like every other form of medical intervention should not be taken mindlessly by rote. That's dangerous.

          •  Vaccines are dangerous to some (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            chimpy, raptavio

            but not most.

            Diseases, OTOH, are dangerous to most.

            Let's ask the Haitians how they feel about cholera.

            Show me the POLICY!

            by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 12:43:03 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Fact check (0+ / 0-)

            There was only one death associated with Rotashield, and it's not clear the death was caused by the vaccine. Intussusception is a rare disorder that can be found in children regardless of vaccination status. Let's not confuse correlation with causation.

            Vaccines are continuously monitored for safety and efficacy, far more than any other pharmaceutical product. The risks of vaccines are exaggerated by Dan Olmsted and other anti-vaccine publicists. In fact, a child is at far, far greater risk for injury or death during the drive to the pediatrician's office, than he/she is from the vaccine itself.

      •  You're absoulutely correct. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        chimpy, elmo, ozarkspark

        It's that way in the media on any autism topic.  "Some" is never used before "autism" and it ticks me off too.  As I wrote, there are a lot of different subtypes.  

        But the "anti-vax" drum is also used by pharma as a big club to bash any and all who even have questions...so I think that's unfair too.    

        "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

        by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:13:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  People who take medical advice from Jenny McCarth (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chimpy, Fabian, Jane Lew

      People who take medical advice from Jenny McCarthy are dangers to us all.

      •  Literally true, "dangers to us all." (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fabian, gayjustice

        Yes, they are dangers to us all, by reducing our herd immunity. By keeping their own kids out of the program, they put younger kids, too young to vaccinate, at risk for those diseases.

        I wonder if, by any of us accepting any kind of bullshit at all, we reduce our national immunity to all kinds of it.

        Why is there a Confederate Flag flying in Afghanistan?

        by chimpy on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:46:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  even if vaccines did cause autism (9+ / 0-)

    Would you rather have a kid with autism than a kid with polio, or die as a baby from measles?

    •  I was thinking the same thing (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TiaRachel, Fabian, Gary Norton, Siri

      The surety of preventing polio seems a better outcome than the remote possibility of causing autism.  

    •  Speaking as an adult with Asperger's (9+ / 0-)

      Seriously, the way Autism Speaks and their ilk talks of this "disease" you'd think it was the second coming of polio crossbred with rabies and malaria. I once read a fellow Aspie at Wrong Planet describe Autism Speak as the "FOX News of autism charities." I have to agree.

      I'd rather have autism than have died during childhood from preventable disease! How could anyone even question that nonsense? My problem isn't autism. THAT I can cope with, embrace and in many ways, love. I like being someone with autism. Honest. No joke. It's the way society has failed people with autism that has held me back and hurt me. Not to mentiont eh depression and pTSD that has resulted from how society has failed me. THAT is what has kicked me in the ass. THAT is what make my life painful and miserable.

      But there is something quite beautiful about being able to see and experience the world differently from others. Why is that "disordered"? Why are these people afraid of us?

      (-8.50, -7.64) Virtue cannot separate itself from reality without becoming a principle of evil. - Albert Camus

      by croyal on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:27:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Right on! (4+ / 0-)

        It's the way society has failed people with autism that has held me back and hurt me.

        My son has the most fascinating way of looking at things. I wouldn't change it for the world. I hope, some day, he will feel the same way and embrace his autism as you do. Thanks for expressing it so effectively.

        Being a Humanist means trying to behave decently without expectation of rewards or punishment after you are dead. ~K. Vonnegut

        by Greek Goddess on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:11:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  do you have an (0+ / 0-)

      autistic child?

      •  can't say I do (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fabian

        if I did though I'd rather he had autism than die . . . or maybe I wouldn't? Guess I can't put myself in shoes of a parent without being one. I've met autistic people and their lives didn't seem like living hells, but I should be corrected on that if I'm wrong.

        •  The worst part (0+ / 0-)

          is that they live in a world different from the one you live in.

          That's all.

          It is difficult, but not impossible for them to understand your world.

          It is difficult, but not impossible for you to understand their world.

          If everyone works hard, there's no reason we can't understand each other.  Communication depends on something called "shared experience" where we assume that what what we experience in terms of sensory input and cognition is what others experience.  If we don't have that "shared experience" then it is more difficult for us to communicate because we can't make assumptions about each other.  

          Show me the POLICY!

          by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 04:09:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Good point (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Fabian

            I have some of the traits from aspergers a form of autism. Not formally diagnosed, but from reading of it I have some of the traits, not being able to connect socially with people leads me to depression and anxiety. I can't relate to how some things happen so easy for some people but for me it's a struggle. And that is not autism, just a form of it, and not the full autism. Of course I can't imagine what it is like without being in someone elses shoes. Communication is key, but it's hard to do.

  •  actually it's mostly settled science (22+ / 0-)

    so i think the on-the-fencers don't have a leg to stand on.

    wasthing money to research a non question - again and again -  is just that: a waste.

    sorry, but age of autism is wrong... the blind spot is in the relitigating settled science.

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:32:29 AM PST

    •  "mostly settled"? (0+ / 0-)

      Dem - I really don't know. The "certainty" on both sides of this issue really bothers me and is probably responsible for a lot of talking past one another.  Former NIH Chair Healy's comments in '08 cited above about the science not being done yet struck me as more than a bit disturbing.  

      I'm not certain about much at all re this issue, which doesn't endear me to the folks who are absoulutely sure that it's mercury....or mmr....or hep B....or too many vaccines.  

      What astounds me about your comment though is your apparent willingness to believe that science and medicine are static.  Nothing is ever settled and we can always learn more...including how to make safer vaccines because some kids do get the short end of of the stick from side effects.    

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:34:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  the option to have mercury free vaccines (5+ / 0-)

        is already out there - I remember choosing that for my daughter (who is on the spectrum).

        I'm unclear what the end goal is - "safer" is a little too nebulous for me. And honestly, I'd rather see research dollars go more into understanding some more of the basics of autism (which we still don't know) instead of having "safer" vaccines...whatever that is.

        "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

        by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:46:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm betting on (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          grannyhelen

          a metabolic/endocrine disorder caused by one or more defective enzymes for at least some autism cases.

          I'm doubling down on the cause being genetic in origin - either inherited or spontaneous mutation.

          (Intriguingly, one of the best known classes of genetic diseases - hemophilia - is often caused by spontaneous mutation, not inherited mutation. 30% of Hemophilia A & B are not inherited.  Naturally, inherited genetic diseases are easier to detect and study.)

          Show me the POLICY!

          by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:56:25 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  For my kids it's clearly genetic... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Fabian

            ...and I doubt there's even a trigger - for my kids it just seems to be as it is.

            The specturm is so diverse, however, that I don't want to generalize for every other child in the specturm based on my personal experience. It wouldn't surprise me if there were multiple causes that resulted in autistic conditions and the severity of those conditions.

            The maddening thing is: 1). we don't know nearly as much as we need to know and 2). as long as we keep retreading the same known ground because folks have an emotional investment in a theory we're not going to get anywhere very quickly.

            "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

            by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:04:54 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  So far the Behavioral Sciences (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              grannyhelen

              studies at OSU are not very interesting.  Mostly drugs to control unwanted behaviors.  I passed on the risperidone study.  My take on risperidone is that it is a drug that significantly impacts the met/endo systems with a side effect of reducing adverse behavior.  Hey, I'd love some help with behavior issues, but I'm NOT interested seriously messing with his met/endo system to get there.

              Find me something more precise.  Risperidone shows that tinkering with met/endo has an impact on behavior, so take that and run with it.  How does it work?  Does it work differently on certain autistics because their met/endo is different?  

              It's step in the right direction, but only one step on what may be a long path with wrong turns and blind alleys.

              Show me the POLICY!

              by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:14:57 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Thankfully my kids have responded very well to (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Fabian, Greek Goddess

                ABA - neither of them were particularly aggressive, either, altho they did have some other things (transition issues, compulsions) that we needed to gently intervene on to correct.

                No drugs so far, for which I'm very grateful.

                Sending positive thoughts your way - I know what it's like :-)

                "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

                by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:21:05 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Crossing my fingers. (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  grannyhelen, Greek Goddess

                  He just lost computer time for a WEEK for being utterly fascinated with breaking eggs.

                  He's not at all happy, but then again I wasn't when another dozen went AWOL.

                  Show me the POLICY!

                  by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:30:37 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That shouldn't make me lol - but I've had so many (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Fabian, Greek Goddess

                    similar things happen that it did. ;-)

                    Now that my daughter is fully communicative, I find myself saying "what are you doing and why are you doing it" more frequently than I expected going into this whole parenting thing.

                    If we could only get my son to sleep the entire night in his bed by himself, that'd just be nirvana...

                    "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

                    by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:41:30 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  He is now helping to make pancakes. (3+ / 0-)

                      So he gets to crack eggs under supervision and work on his sequencing, which is something else he loves.

                      My husband (exasperated) "You have to sit on him (figuratively) every second!".  
                      Me: "Well, yes.  But he stood there and paid attention, even if he didn't follow your directions precisely.".  
                      Him: "Yes, but really!".

                      I didn't point out that he needs to learn autism-speak:  How to say EXACTLY what you mean.  No ambiguity.  No figures of speech.  Use complete sentences.

                      We use language incredibly sloppily.  We expect people to fill in all the gaps and know exactly what we mean, even if we don't say exactly what we mean.

                      Show me the POLICY!

                      by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:04:41 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Sounds very much like my daughter... (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Fabian

                        ...she's very literal as well.

                        Enjoy the pancakes! :-)

                        "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

                        by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:14:33 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  It's not exactly literal. (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          grannyhelen, TiaRachel

                          The next time you talk to someone notice

                          how many times you don't use a full subject/verb/object construction.

                          How many times you address someone without making sure they are paying attention to you first.

                          How many times you use pronouns when it would be clearer to use nouns or proper nouns.  

                          "Give this to her." (waving a piece of paper in someone's general direction)

                          No address and waiting for response.

                          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

                          "Xavier?" (wait for head to turn and attention to focus on you)

                          "I want you to give this homework to Cathy."
                          "Okay?"
                          (wait for some affirmative response OR have them repeat the instruction)

                          (After instruction is carried out successfully.)
                          "Thank you, Xavier!"

                          The interesting part is that this works on neurotypicals/normal people too.  The praise at the end isn't strictly necessary, but it never hurts to acknowledge that they did what you asked.

                          Show me the POLICY!

                          by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:26:04 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

      •  Because Some Of The Claims You Mention..... (14+ / 0-)

        Have been studied and studied over & over again, with not 1 reputable study ever providing evidence of an association, linkage, or relationship.

        How much time & resources should we devote to the same debunked claims over & over again?

        • Mercury

        Thimerosal is a mercury-containing organic compound (an organomercurial). Since the 1930s, it has been widely used as a preservative in a number of biological and drug products, including many vaccines, to help prevent potentially life threatening contamination with harmful microbes. When people hear "mercury," the gears inside the brain's imagination machine start turning. However, thimerosal is a derivative of ethylmercury, not methylmercury. They are different chemical entities.

        Expert consultation and data presented to the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS) indicate that the pharmacokinetic profile of ethyl mercury is substantially different from that of methyl mercury. The half-life of ethyl mercury is short (less than one week) compared to methyl mercury (1.5 months) making exposure to ethyl mercury in blood comparatively brief. Further, ethyl mercury is actively excreted via the gut unlike methyl mercury that accumulates in the body.

        (Source)

        To put this in perspective, a vaccination has less ethylmercury (in the form of thimerosal) than the amount of methylmercury an adult/kid might possibly get from eating a tuna sandwich. The association between thimerosal in vaccines & autism has been a failed hypothesis as study after study has shown no linkage.

        From Clinical Infectious Diseases (CID):

        Three ecological studies performed in 3 different countries compared the incidence of autism with thimerosal exposure from vaccines. In each case, the nationwide removal of thimerosal—which occurred in 1992 in Europe and in 2001 in the United States—allowed robust comparisons of vaccination with thimerosal‐containing and thimerosal‐free products, as follows:

        1. In Sweden and Denmark, researchers found a relatively stable incidence of autism when thimerosal‐containing vaccines were in use (1980–1990), including years when children were exposed to as much as 200 μg of ethylmercury (concentrations similar to peak US exposures). However, in 1990, a steady increase in the incidence of autism began in both countries and continued through the end of the study period in 2000, despite the removal of thimerosal from vaccines in 1992.
        1. In Denmark, researchers performed a study comparing the incidence of autism in children who had received 200 μg (1961–1970), 125 μg (1970–1992), or 0 μg of thimerosal (1992–2000) and again demonstrated no relationship between thimerosal exposure and autism.
        1. In Quebec, researchers grouped 27,749 children from 55 schools by date of birth and estimated thimerosal exposure on the basis of the corresponding Ministry of Health vaccine schedules. School records were obtained to determine age‐specific rates of pervasive developmental disorder. Thimerosal exposure and pervasive developmental disorder diagnosis were found to be independent variables. Similar to previous analyses, the highest rates of pervasive developmental disorder were found in cohorts exposed to thimerosal‐free vaccines. The results were unchanged when both exposure and outcome definitions varied.

        Four cohort studies that examined thimerosal exposure and autism have been performed, as follows:

        1. In Denmark, researchers examined >1200 children with autism that was identified during 1990–1996, which comprised 3 million person‐years. They found that the risk of autism did not differ between children vaccinated with thimerosal‐containing vaccines and those vaccinated with thimerosal‐free vaccines or between children who received greater or lower quantities of thimerosal. They also found that the rates of autism increased after the removal of thimerosal from all vaccines.
        1. In the United States, using the Vaccine Safety Data Link, researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention examined 140,887 US children born during 1991–1999, including >200 children with autism. The researchers found no relationship between receipt of thimerosal‐containing vaccines and autism.
        1. In England, researchers prospectively followed 12,810 children for whom they had complete vaccination records who were born during 1991–1992, and they found no relationship between early thimerosal exposure and deleterious neurological or psychological outcomes.
        1. In the United Kingdom, researchers evaluated the vaccination records of 100,572 children born during 1988–1997, using the General Practice Research Database, 104 of whom were affected with autism. No relationship between thimerosal exposure and autism diagnosis was observed.

        From the FDA:

        In 2004, the Institutes Of Medicine's Immunization Safety Review Committee issued its final report, examining the hypothesis that vaccines, specifically the MMR vaccines and thimerosal containing vaccines, are causally associated with autism. In this report, the committee incorporated new epidemiological evidence from the U.S., Denmark, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, and studies of biologic mechanisms related to vaccines and autism since its report in 2001. The committee concluded that this body of evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism, and that hypotheses generated to date concerning a biological mechanism for such causality are theoretical only. Further, the committee stated that the benefits of vaccination are proven and the hypothesis of susceptible populations is presently speculative, and that widespread rejection of vaccines would lead to increases in incidences of serious infectious diseases like measles, whooping cough and Hib bacterial meningitis.

        • Adjuvants

        There is no evidence aluminum-containing vaccines are a serious health risk or justify changes to immunization practice. Aluminum salts have been used as adjuvants for about 80 years, and there's much more aluminum in breast milk & infant formula than there is in the vaccines.

        During the first 6 months of life, infants could receive about 4 milligrams of aluminum from vaccines. That’s not very much: a milligram is one-thousandth of a gram and a gram is the weight of one-fifth of a teaspoon of water. During the same period, babies will also receive about 10 milligrams of aluminum in breast milk, about 40 milligrams in infant formula, or about 120 milligrams in soy-based formula.

        All babies are either breast-fed or bottle-fed. Because both breast milk and infant formula contain aluminum, all babies have small quantities of aluminum in their bloodstreams all the time. The amount is very small: about 5 nanograms (billionths of a gram) per milliliter of blood (about one-fifth of a teaspoon). Indeed, the quantity of aluminum in vaccines is so small that even after an injection of vaccines, the amount of aluminum in a baby’s blood does not detectably change. In contrast, the amount of aluminum in the bloodstreams of people who suffer health problems from aluminum is at least 100 times greater than the amount found in the bloodstreams of healthy people.

        As for Squalene, it's an organic compound that's manufactured by our livers, and circulated in our bloodstreams.

        From the World Health Organization:

        What is known about the safety of squalene in vaccines?

        • Twenty two million doses of Chiron's influenza vaccine (FLUAD) have been administered safely since 1997. This vaccine contains about 10mg of squalene per dose. No severe adverse events have been associated with the vaccine. Some mild local reactogenicity has been observed.
        • Clinical studies on squalene-containing vaccines have been done in infants and neonates without evidence of safety concerns.

        Why do some people think squalene in vaccines carries a risk?

        • A few people have tried to link the health problems of Gulf War veterans to the possible presence of squalene in the vaccines these soldiers received.
        • One published report suggested that some veterans who received anthrax vaccines developed anti-squalene antibodies and these antibodies caused disabilities.
        • It is now known that squalene was not added to the vaccines administered to these veterans, and technical deficiencies in the report suggesting an association have been published.

        Four independent civilian panels considered allegations related to squalene and anti-squalene antibodies, and concluded that the study which alleged an association "contains shortcomings, some serious, that combine to invalidate the authors’ conclusions."

        • "Too Many, Too Soon"

        While it's true there are more vaccines against specific viruses and bacteria on the routine schedule, the Vaccine load is actually much less than it once was.

        Although the number of recommended childhood vaccines has increased during the past 30 years, with advances in protein chemistry and recombinant DNA technology, the immunologic load has actually decreased. The 14 vaccines given today contain less than 200 bacterial and viral proteins or polysaccharides, compared with more than 3000 of these immunological components in the 7 vaccines administered in 1980.

        Studies of this hypothesis have found the evidence lacking for "vaccine overload."

      •  it's called "research" (6+ / 0-)

        and it's not the same as having doubts and anecdotal evidence of something you 'feel'.

      •  Medicine is not static, but (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        grannyhelen, TiaRachel, Fabian, katynka

        the court of public opinion is not the place to fight these things out.
        It is too easy to get lost in fear and sensationalism.

        So far, I have not heard of any strong, statistically sound evidence of vaccines being linked to high risks of problems.

        That does not mean not to keep an open mind as new evidence presents itself, but given the amount of effort spent investigating the question, it seems like investigating other questions is more likely to generate useful information.

        If you are interested in changing information, look at CPR guidelines, where they have changed several times over the past few decades.

      •  Medicine and science are not static (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        grannyhelen, Fabian, Jane Lew

        The understanding of the world that science offers us is always changing and evolving...BUT based on evidence and new findings and a community of scholarship that works to refine and further our understanding.

        Our scientific understanding of the world does not change based on debates on talk shows or books by celebrities, or individuals coming to conclusions based on their experiences with one person.

        Science is not based on the principle of "fair and balanced" in which two sides need to be given equal credibility (we can debate whether or not journalism should be, but science definitely should not).  

        There is no scientific reason to pursue this line of research, only political ones.  

        Our scientific understanding of autism will not grow and develop if we follow dead ends where there is no evidence.

        It's the vaccination debate that has become static, not the science.

  •  sigh (21+ / 0-)

    some people will never be convinced that vaccines don't cause austism no matter how many studies say that it does not.

    California turned Blue America turned Insane.

    by GlowNZ on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:33:06 AM PST

  •  Bullshit. (16+ / 0-)

    Reality based community and all that.  If you want your claims to be taken seriously, show us the peer reviewed science proving it.  

    In the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

    by Cixelsyd on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:35:09 AM PST

  •  I'm amazed (18+ / 0-)

    at how little science is applied to a purely scientific debate to arrive at such an idiotic conclusion.

    Vaccines do not cause autism.

    A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. --Muhammad Ali

    by TheBlaz on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:35:16 AM PST

  •  Honestly, I thought (26+ / 0-)

    we were finished with these anti-science diaries.  I think anti-vac diaries should be CT.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:35:46 AM PST

  •  Yeah, we also don't think Obama is Nigerian (8+ / 0-)

    so there. Go sell this silliness elsewhere.

  •  "Plausibly"? (11+ / 0-)

    "and plausibly some aspect of the very same mass vaccination campaign"

    I have never seen plausible evidence presented on this question.  But what I do see is the same framing that led to all the "death panel" bullshit.  Progressives are cast as big bad government wanting to shoot you full of poison and kill your grandmother.

    Public health has been dealing with this for decades.  Anti-vaccination campaigns aren't new.  This is just the latest and one of the more persistent.

  •  Please remove (20+ / 0-)

    KosAbility from your tags -- you denigrate that important series with this bullshite.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:40:28 AM PST

  •  There Isn't an Issue (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chimpy, eru, bythesea, Jane Lew

    This is the same as the Kenyan Obama issue.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:42:09 AM PST

  •  Penn Teller - Bullshit (11+ / 0-)

    I don't really agree with them alot but this bit from their show is right on.

    Now whoa whoa whoa right there spinach chin!

    by Borg Warner on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:43:19 AM PST

  •  yeah sorry (7+ / 0-)

    We know you want to sell your book and all, and it's sad that you can't get more free publicity for your provocative claims, but this "high decible debate" [sic] is basically over. Vaccines do not cause autism, they never have. And people will, we hope, be less and less afraid of that as time goes on. Because it's fear that makes people believe things when all credible evidence points the other way. This is a perfect book to promote to teabaggers, though, who are more than willing to take up myths as causes and scream about them. Maybe you -- I mean Dan Olmstead -- can go peddle this to them.

  •  I Conducted a Study of My Own (12+ / 0-)

    And it turns out that after vaccinations, 100% of children who received them grew (in both height and weight) in the months and years afterwards.  So even if it DOES cause autism, are you willing to risk our children never growing past age two if we stop vaccinating them?

    Dear Wall Street: If you want to stop feeling like a piñata, stop stuffing yourself with our f#@$ing candy.

    by TooFolkGR on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:50:04 AM PST

  •  OK, consider me called out. (4+ / 0-)

    I'll even confess it right here for everyone to read: "Science works." There, glad that's out in the open now.

    Why is there a Confederate Flag flying in Afghanistan?

    by chimpy on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:51:03 AM PST

  •  I knew my child was different before he was born. (17+ / 0-)

    I'd never had a baby before, and my son is an only child. But while I was pregnant, I knew that my baby was different than other babies. For one thing, he moved constantly--he never held still longer than a few seconds all day and all night long. I first felt his movement when I was three months' pregnant, although the doctor told me it was impossible to feel movement at such an early stage. His constant moving resulted in my having Braxton-Hicks contractions every 20 minutes from my sixth month on. And he had the hiccups for hours on end nearly every day, causing my belly to jump (much to the hilarity of my co-workers, but it was most distressing to me).

    When he was born and throughout much of his first two years he existed in one of two states: fast asleep or raging violently. I had him tested the first time when he was three, and he was diagnosed with Sensory Integration Dysfunction, which is now considered an autism spectrum disorder. Therapy and maturity have have beneficial effects, and now he is a pretty well-integrated 13-year-old. But I never for one moment doubt that his condition is built in and not a result of vaccinations, which we had given to him on schedule and to no notable behavioral effect. I have to shake my head at people like Jenny McCarthy, whose hysteria about her son's autism seems to feed her quest to find experts who agree with her so she can churn out books espousing her notions. Maybe some children are adversely affected by vaccinations. I don't believe mine was.

    Being a Humanist means trying to behave decently without expectation of rewards or punishment after you are dead. ~K. Vonnegut

    by Greek Goddess on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:52:10 AM PST

    •  Many blessings (5+ / 0-)

      for your family, GG.  It looks like you should also include good parenting and parental love to the reasons why your child succeeded.  

      " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

      by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:01:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  GG (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jane Lew, Greek Goddess

      Not sure if you meant to rec the tip jar.

      " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

      by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:04:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I did. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fabian, lgmcp, gchaucer2

        I believe this diary is a credible contribution to the discussion on autism that regularly takes place here on DKos. The diarist points out current commentary on the issue of vaccinations and autism, and although not all may agree with the diarist's opinions, the resources he/she provides are important to be aware of if one desires to be a fully informed participant in these discussions. In fact, the diarist clearly states that he/she is not convinced by arguments on either side of the debate and calls for more scientific study--a reasonable position, in my opinion.

        Being a Humanist means trying to behave decently without expectation of rewards or punishment after you are dead. ~K. Vonnegut

        by Greek Goddess on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:29:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks for the thoughtful reply (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fabian, lgmcp, Jane Lew, Greek Goddess

          " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

          by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:36:40 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  But it isn't (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fabian, Jane Lew, Greek Goddess

          because the diarist acknowledges that multiple scientific studies have shown no link whatsoever between autism and vaccination, and by continuing to generate the debate, it continues to cause people to doubt whether it's safe to vaccinate their children.

          This is causing previously all-but-eradicated preventible childhood diseases in the US to start to make a resurgence. Like whooping cough, or tetanus, or German measles. Diseases which can not only maim, but kill, young children.

          These diaries should not be countenanced on this site unless and until significant evidence that there is a link between vaccines or thiomersal and autism. Otherwise, they contribute to a problem that measurably is killing our children.

          One parent of an autism spectrum child to another: Please remove your uprate.

          We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

          by raptavio on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:18:30 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I deeply respect your position, and I thank you (0+ / 0-)

            for reaching out to me as a fellow parent. I'm not sure I believe that fear of a link between vaccinations and autism is the motivation for most parents who decline to have their children vaccinated. I have several friends who didn't vaccinate their children, and their reasons ranged from skepticism about whether vaccinations really work, to concern that the government was putting some kind of evil chemicals in the serum for the purpose of social control, to the rationale that if all the other kids were vaccinated there would be nobody to transmit the diseases to THEIR kid, so why bother? I personally never heard anyone say they were forgoing vaccinations because of the fear of autism. The only people I know of who say things like this are those I read about and Jenny McCarthy.

            I continue to believe that the diary, though flawed, both demonstrates the diarist's efforts to present both sides of the argument and provides an opportunity for lively discourse in the comments. Obviously people feel very strongly about the issue. Though many believe that there IS no argument--that science has proven beyond a reasonable doubt that there is no link between childhood vaccinations and autism--there are enough people who believe otherwise that it's useful to have the links, if for no other reason than to see how the other side is thinking. I make no secret of the fact that I don't believe the vaccination-autism connection, but I am speaking solely from my own experience. Others will do the same and have just as strongly held differing beliefs. I don't rec diaries because I necessarily agree with them, but because I feel they are making a contribution, and judging from the comments, this diary has indeed inspired a lot of useful and important conversation. Though I'm sure you and I agree philosophically about this issue, I hope you can understand and appreciate why I am letting my rec stand.

            Being a Humanist means trying to behave decently without expectation of rewards or punishment after you are dead. ~K. Vonnegut

            by Greek Goddess on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 06:00:57 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Allow me to offer you some reading: (0+ / 0-)

              http://www.newsweek.com/...

              I'm not talking about "opinions" or "feelings" here. I am talking about facts and truth. And they overwhelmingly support two conclusions:

              One, there is no credible evidence linking autism and vaccination.

              Two, the scare has caused parents to not vaccinate their children, leading to more children being killed and maiming due to illnesses that would have been prevented by those vaccinations.

              So yes, I understand why you are letting your rec stand. But I do not appreciate it.

              We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

              by raptavio on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 06:54:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Because we don't buy Olmsted's nonsense (16+ / 0-)

    about a mythical link between vaccines and autism, we are accused of not caring about autism? Ridiculous.

    Be radical in your compassion.

    by DWG on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 08:53:59 AM PST

    •  Of course not. (1+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      ozarkspark
      Hidden by:
      raptavio

      But, whether you agree with a possible link, vehemently don't, or are uncertain (like me), one of his main points is that progressives are giving a free pass to pharma and government on this issue.  Whether it's Gardisil, mandating flu shots for health workers and students (many of which still contain mercury), or other additions to the schedule in the months and years to come, it's apparent from the comments that this is sacrosanct among progressives, which is fine if you believe that the drug companies will self-regulate and the government has in place now an independent and robust safety construct.    

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:05:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  More bullshite (15+ / 0-)

        Progressives have never given a free pass to Pharma.  What they do is look to scientists rather than a blogger/"reporter" for facts.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:06:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  And, p.s. (8+ / 0-)

        do just a tad bit of research on the mercury issue.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:07:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  It *isn't* a free pass to pharma... (9+ / 0-)

        ...sorry, that's ridiculous. There have been several additional studies done on any links between autism and vaccines and there just isn't any there, there.

        Noting that doesn't give a "free pass" to anyone. As a parent of 2 kids on the spectrum I'm really honestly confused by that conclusion.

        "The revolution's just an ethical haircut away..." Billy Bragg

        by grannyhelen on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:12:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Let me help you here (20+ / 0-)

        You can find an exhaustive review of the literature up  to 2004 here

        You can find the CDC summary of recent research here

        You can find the latest peer-reveiwed study here

        For you convenience, here is the summary.

        Abstract
        OBJECTIVE: Exposure to thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative that is used in vaccines and immunoglobulin preparations, has been hypothesized to be associated with increased risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study was designed to examine relationships between prenatal and infant ethylmercury exposure from thimerosal-containing vaccines and/or immunoglobulin preparations and ASD and 2 ASD subcategories: autistic disorder (AD) and ASD with regression.

        METHODS: A case-control study was conducted in 3 managed care organizations (MCOs) of 256 children with ASD and 752 controls matched by birth year, gender, and MCO. ASD diagnoses were validated through standardized in-person evaluations. Exposure to thimerosal in vaccines and immunoglobulin preparations was determined from electronic immunization registries, medical charts, and parent interviews. Information on potential confounding factors was obtained from the interviews and medical charts. We used conditional logistic regression to assess associations between ASD, AD, and ASD with regression and exposure to ethylmercury during prenatal, birth-to-1 month, birth-to-7-month, and birth-to-20-month periods.

        RESULTS: There were no findings of increased risk for any of the 3 ASD outcomes. The adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) for ASD associated with a 2-SD increase in ethylmercury exposure were 1.12 (0.83-1.51) for prenatal exposure, 0.88 (0.62-1.26) for exposure from birth to 1 month, 0.60 (0.36-0.99) for exposure from birth to 7 months, and 0.60 (0.32-0.97) for exposure from birth to 20 months.

        CONCLUSIONS: In our study of MCO members, prenatal and early-life exposure to ethylmercury from thimerosal-containing vaccines and immunoglobulin preparations was not related to increased risk of ASDs.

        What I find noxious about people like Olmsted is that the antivaccine crowd is wringing its hands over trace exposure to mercury in the vaccines. They are overlooking strong evidence that exposure from industrial point sources of mercury, including many of the coal-fired power plants, and autism. For example:

        The objective of this study was to determine if proximity to sources of mercury pollution in 1998 were related to autism prevalence in 2002. Autism count data from the Texas Educational Agency and environmental mercury release data from the Environmental Protection Agency were used. We found that for every 1000 pounds of industrial release, there was a corresponding 2.6% increase in autism rates (p<.05) and a 3.7% increase associated with power plant emissions(P<.05). Distances to these sources were independent predictors after adjustment for relevant covariates. For every 10 miles from industrial or power plant sources, there was an associated decreased autism Incident Risk of 2.0% and 1.4%, respectively (p<.05). While design limitations preclude interpretation of individual risk, further investigations of environmental risks to child development issues are warranted. </p>

        We have about 1 in 4 parents in this country believing in the mythical link between thimerosal and autismbecause of the continued preoccupation by people like Olmsted. This is a disservice to the study of autism on several levels. It diverts money to continue study a hypothesis has been rejected in well-designed studies for over a decade. It scares parents into considering not protecting their children from preventable conditions because of nonsense. This needs to stop.

        Be radical in your compassion.

        by DWG on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:30:57 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You have a solid argument (0+ / 0-)

          that you back up well but the reality is that it's not stopping. It'a actually getting louder.  It's like the Wakefield affair didn't even happen. So what now?  The existence of AoA and pieces like Olmsted's evidence that it's not going away.  The CDC NIH and AAP are trying to put toothpaste back into the tube via a coordinated pressure and "fear" based PR effort, but I don't think it's the right approach.  

          To increase uptake rates, I think a focus on creating a more independent, robust, and less opaque safety construct needs to be initiated so parents gain confidence.  I think other efforts will be doomed to fail.  

          "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

          by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:04:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  We can always publicize (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TiaRachel, kalmoth

            every single communicable disease outbreak.

            It would help to have funding for increased monitoring and testing, but.....

            I predict that there will be a malpractice lawsuit filed (successful or not) in the next 5 years for the death of an infant from pertussis, measles, chicken pox or bacterial encephalitis for a child that was not vaccinated.

            That's how people roll.  They'll insist they know best.  They'll insist the vaccine is not necessary.  Then they'll go ballistic when their child dies or suffers permanent damage.

            Show me the POLICY!

            by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:26:41 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  I have never understood this argument (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        taylormattd, TiaRachel, kalmoth, Fabian, bobsc

        (well, or most of the CT stuff I see, of course) but exactly who benefits if your kids later get infectious diseases? Pharma! Wouldn't it be in their best financial interest for you to be ill, and need treatments for all that stuff? Especially a nice device like a lifelong iron lung?

        the first essential component of social justice is adequate food for all mankind --Borlaug

        by mem from somerville on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:32:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Mindlessly demonizing pharma perhaps bad? (3+ / 0-)

          I mean I do realize that the incentives of pharma is not exactly aligned with global health, but I think your logic can definitely be extended to pointing out how it's really not totally rational to mindlessly demonize pharma.

          I just can't work myself up into a foaming lather of rage against corporations and pharma like some others around here. Because you're right: if pharma really were horrific and relentlessly evil, they would buy up vaccine manufacturers and put them out of business. Maybe this is what they mean when they say that you get a little more conservative as you age? Heresy, I know. But because we have to waste all our time debating whether vaccines made by big bad evil pharma causes autism or not, we can't even talk about more useful (and more interesting!) things like how to deal with patents the right way, how much does a start-up owe to society when its research was publicly funded, etc.

          Give me liberty, or give me death!

          by salsa0000 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:52:36 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  I'm taken aback at the level (0+ / 0-)

        of anger and ridicule in the comments.  I don't think your diary deserves it.  

      •  Second donut for more explicit CT (3+ / 0-)

        Suggesting some sort of conspiracy to cover up the effects of vaccination and calling the KOS community, in essence, dupes for buying it, is waaaay over the line without clear and convincing evidence.

        We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

        by raptavio on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:01:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  As everyone else has put you straight (11+ / 0-)

    on the science, I'll just add this:

    The best major-media reporting recently on this issue has come from conservative Fox News, which has taken to running almost weekly reports.

    As you quote, if Olmsted thinks Faux is the "best" in any category aside from RW propaganda, that should pretty much tell you everything you need to know about his judgment. Fox--home of fear and fakery.

    Take this crap to Huffpo where they might appreciate it. They are soundly trounced by everyone I know in science, so you'd have a more receptive bunch there.

    the first essential component of social justice is adequate food for all mankind --Borlaug

    by mem from somerville on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:12:46 AM PST

  •  Who ignores evidence? (7+ / 0-)

    Mr. Olmstead needs to look in a mirror.

    There is no obligation to entertain conspiracy theories from people who have demonstrated a highly selective understanding of what constitutes "evidence."

  •  Conspiracy theory. Should not be on dKos. (9+ / 0-)
    1. There is no scientific evidence linking thimerosal (Merthiolate) and autism, and lots against. There are no other known health hazards from the amounts used in vaccines. Nevertheless, it is being phased out of childhood vaccine production in the US and elsewhere.
    1. There is no conspiracy to deny the truth. Citing scientific evidence is not "failing to get it".
    1. See Global Warming denial, 9/11 Trutherism, Birtherism, AIDS denial, and the rest of the crank theories held by the "well-meaning" willfully ignorant.

    Yes, I read the article. I didn't need to, as it turns out. Nothing new there. Still factually challenged.

    Busting the Dog Whistle code.

    by Mokurai on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:15:54 AM PST

  •  "I'm not convinced" is not evidence (8+ / 0-)

    moreover, I am not the one who needs to be convinced. Of course, there is a lot to learn about what causes autism, but the fact that we don't know provides exactly zero evidence that vaccines are dangerous. Likewise, hypothetical researcher bias is not evidence that vaccines are dangerous.

    As a proud member of the reality based community, the moment there is some hard evidence that vaccines lead to an increased risk of autism in some sub-population of humans, I will consider it. Until then, the evidence that we do have points towards no, so that is what I have to go with.

  •  to explain something (8+ / 0-)

    autism was not "caused" by vaccines but autistic symptoms "resulted" from the vaccinations

    This is not bizarre at all. Here's an analogy.

    Suppose there is a car with a hole in its tire. The car happens to be parked so that the hole is at the bottom. so that the hole is sealed by the weight of the car pushing the tire against the pavement. Now the person re-parks the car so that the tire is rotated some and the hole is exposed. A few hours later all the air is gone.

    The hole wasn't caused by re-parking the car, but the flat tire resulted from the act of moving the car.

    In my opinion, autism is just being diagnosed better. It's a relatively new category, and the definition has greatly expanded from "not deaf, but unable to talk" to include lots of people who are functional in general society.

    In a democracy, everyone is a politician. ~ Ehren Watada

    by Lefty Mama on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:30:01 AM PST

    •  I think I can't get my son (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lefty Mama, trashablanca

      into a local autism study because I pointed out on my email application that his cognition is normal.  Heck, the kid is bright.

      They were specifically looking for the effect of a drug on impaired cognition.

      Maybe I should have lied.  

      Show me the POLICY!

      by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:35:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Absolutely. (6+ / 0-)

      I am on the spectrum. I am not autistic. But. I don't like to be touched. I am more comfortable with order. I have odd fascinations with things. I have to wear natural fibers, no prints or patterns. I have to do my hair in a way that doesn't bother me. I am much more comfortable with people in an online setting. I had to learn how to fake comfort when talking to strangers and being out in public settings.  When I am in severe distress, I rock. I am profoundly clumsy and "physically stupid" in learning sequential body movements.

      But I am female, I am very verbally intelligent, and socially adept enough so I don't look autism spectrum. A little geeky, perhaps.

      But I have an autistic bioson. Not severe, and it is projected that he will be able to follow his fascination with weather into a productive and independent career. I think it's a matter of genes plus insult. Is it possible that a vaccine could be the triggering insult? I suppose, but if it hadn't been that it might have been the flu that coming winter, or something like that.

      •  You're on the autism spectrum but not autistic? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TiaRachel

        Um, ok. Don't want to associate yourself to closely with the "problem" kids, huh? Don't worry--we're not contagious.

        Autism can be very, very mild and not cause any problems in the person's life. Some people call it "shadow autism," but that's still autism. This is the problem I have, as someone with Asperger's who is not disabled by Asperger's so much as by separate mental illness, with the assumption that all autism is a disorder. Many people have autism but have no disability from it. Is it still an disorder with them?

        If the autism spectrum includes conditions that are not debilitating then we can't say autism is wholesale a disorder or a disease. It's just a neurological difference, which, for reason we still need to understand, includes people who are genuinely disabled, mildly disabled and not disabled at all. Once we getto that perspective of autism, I think our research will be more fruitful.

        (-8.50, -7.64) Virtue cannot separate itself from reality without becoming a principle of evil. - Albert Camus

        by croyal on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:44:10 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  The vaccine study was fraudulent (5+ / 0-)

    Why are we still debating this?

    •  Q: Why have there been no OTHER studies (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grannyhelen

      since Olmsted that showed the same thing?

      When it comes to fruitful research, studies that point to interesting paths to pursue usually are followed by further studies exploring those paths.

      And yet...the autism/vaccine connection has never been verified, duplicated or strengthened.  There appears to be no "there" there.

      Show me the POLICY!

      by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:49:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  dear Meteor Blades... (5+ / 0-)

    we have a conspiracy theory diary here. Could you remind us - is there some kind of policy on ALL CT diaries, or just the 9-11 stuff that's in the FAQ?

  •  What stake would the healthcare establishment (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fabian, raptavio, bobsc

    have in obscuring a link between autism and vaccines?

    The argument strikes me as tinfoil-hat territory.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 09:58:02 AM PST

  •  Thanks for this diary. (0+ / 0-)

    I have concerns about gardasil for young girls, but some doctors are still prescribing it.

    Aside from the dire statistics regarding side effects, the company's marketing strategy is enough to make your blood boil.  

  •  Actually (5+ / 0-)

    It's insufficient amount of spaghetti in a child's diet that causes autism.

    What?  I have just as much proof for this theory as you do.

  •  Olmstead is pernicious. (6+ / 0-)

    I've worked with autistic children and their families since 1956.  In those days we believed, following Leo Kanner who first described the syndrome that cold parents caused the illness. Kanner later wrote a book apologizing.  over the years I've seen an amazing variety of substances blamed for autism, from histamines to nicotinic acid to you name it.      
        While I'm a clinican not a researcher- I've followed the research fairly closely. For what its worth, I think there is a genetic predisposition, as there is in schizophrenia. Regardless, I'm so impressed with the newer treatment programs.  I see so many kids today doing far better than was the case 50 years ago.    

    •  Treatment programs are awesome. (0+ / 0-)

      As well as sorting out behavior/speech/sensory/cognitive issues.

      Show me the POLICY!

      by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:32:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Many leading researchers agree (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fabian

      with the view of genetic predisposition and potential environmental triggers for some subgroups under the "autism" umbrella.  A lot of funding is going that route.  What's particularly exciting though is that so much research is even going on.  As recently as a decade ago, it was considered a scientific dead end career by many academics. I also agree that early therapeutic intervention has changed a lot of trajectories for the better, which is why insurance reform is so critical.  If early intervention isn't available due to financial constraints, the long term cost is higher in many many ways.

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 12:36:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  the diarist (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TiaRachel, kalmoth, Fabian, ebohlman, Jane Lew

    needs to take some science classes, please.

  •  Sigh. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TiaRachel, kalmoth, Fabian

    Good luck finding an iron lung.

    "Give to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself." - Robert G. Ingersoll

    by Apost8 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:31:59 AM PST

  •  I don't know where to start (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grannyhelen, kalmoth, Fabian, croyal, bobsc

    Usually in that kind of situation I just don't start, but I will in this case.

    1. There is no Kos community, of the sort claimed in this diary.  
    1. There's never been compelling evidence about the claimed connection between autism and vaccines.
    1. That's not to say that autism has no environmental causes: there's a lot more to the chemical environment of children than vaccines.  So you're confusing a narrow claim with a broader speculation, and I don't think people are reflexively hostile to that broader speculation.

    I have always had a lot more curiosity, for instance, about Greg Easterbrook's musings about the correlation between increased autism and increasingly frenetic TV programming for kids, than most people.  There are ways to talk about that without getting all CT about it, though.

    The most impressive thing about man [...] is the fact that he has invented the concept of that which does not exist--Glenn Gould

    by Rich in PA on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:35:40 AM PST

    •  I have autism, Asperger's, as I mentioned above (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grannyhelen, TiaRachel, Fabian, Rich in PA

      I can't watch frenetic TV. Never have. It's too jarring. This why I never liked horror movies. I'm having to watch the new AMC series The Walking Dead on mute and slow fast-forward so I don't get too anxious.

      Actually, compared to other kids my age (I'm 39 now), I watched relatively little TV. Lots of TV involves talking humans, which my young autistic brain found overwhelming. I would watch nature shows, Battlestar Galactica and Charlie Brown specials. Not much else. I preferred spending much of my playtime outside with my cats or looking for bugs and frogs. This is not unusual I've found of autistic kids. They're rather be a natural environment with animals than holed up indoors listening/watching to a recording images of a talking head. Many sadly don't get much a choice and those ones tend to have more problems.

      There is recent studies that appears to be disproving the mirror neuron theory as well, showing people with autism have normal mirror neuron activity. I, of course, just sat back and laughed at this. I had a hard time relating this theory to my own experience. I have no mirror neuron deficits that I am aware of.

      My problems stem largely from being overstimulated, and it just doesn't take much. I also have a lower threshold for stress. I don't have much of what clinically is called "psychological resilience"--it takes me longer to bounce back from negative experiences. These are all things that can be managed well, if I'm allowed the space and proper calm environment to do so. The problem was, as I was got older and my parents started having money problems, I was more and more frequently in environments that was chaotic, stressful, unstable or unsafe. That's when I started having problems. I started having symptoms of an anxiety disorder and depression by the time I was 10, and full-blown PTSD by the time I was 14.

      A while bac, my internet googlings on the recent mirror neuron research lead me to this blog by Karla McLaren, social science researcher and empath healer (it's not as crazy as it sounds) who had worked with Temple Grandin. She has observed the same thing about us autistics: it's not mirror neurons, but sensory overload. My experience of autism, as someone with it, relates well to her observations. It's funny and quite frustrating how everyone is so focused on finding out the "cause" of autism that so few have taken the time to think what it's really like to have autism. I'm glad this women has. I think she's headed in the right direction.

      I think that this issue of sensory hypersensitivity, and with it, a kind of extreme empathy that makes it hard for us to shut out other humans until it get overwhelming and WE shut down, is a center issue to autism. Yes, some changing aspects of our society would likely make this more evident in some autistic people, makign it harder for them to cope in our increasingly frantic and chaotic society. But it's not the cause, per se. Just the litmus test, so to speak.

      (-8.50, -7.64) Virtue cannot separate itself from reality without becoming a principle of evil. - Albert Camus

      by croyal on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:19:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  thank you, awesome comment... (0+ / 0-)

        I KNOW my child does not have emotional withdrawal. He too is overwhelmed by his extra-raw senses. He shuts down instead of showing anxiety - at least he came with an overload switch which protects him from feeling upset. I couldn't call him autistic for the longest time because the working definition usually involves "an inability to understand emotions", which does not work for me.

        By the same token, you have explained most marvelously why autism is suddenly a huge issue: in the past, people could choose to grow up in nature, and find jobs that provided predicable settings or (gasp) actual connection with nature. That's got to be a major problem that we have now - even rural children tend to sit in their living rooms more than they used to.

        In a democracy, everyone is a politician. ~ Ehren Watada

        by Lefty Mama on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 01:42:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  you see lots of people blaming... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fabian, katynka

    ...mercury in vaccines but how many are looking at mercury from power plants or other sources.  Yea i would like mercury out of vaccines if possible but it is complete stupidity not vaccinating children without clear proof that the vaccine is at least half as harmful as the diseases they effectivly prevent.  And considering the diseases they prevent are contagious they are not just risking thier own kids but everyones kids.

    We Glory in war, in the shedding of human blood. What fools we are.

    by delver rootnose on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:48:12 AM PST

    •  Mercury... (0+ / 0-)

      According to case studies compiled by Canadian Government scientists, there is general consensus among internationally recognized scientists that annual mercury emissions have increased two to five fold within the last century, with anthropogenic emissions now surpassing natural emissions in the industrialized world.

      Recent studies estimate the annual global mercury pool (atmospheric) as high as 5000 tons while the total mercury content in the ocean is estimated at 10,800 tons. Research indicates that during the pre-industrial age, the global mercury pool contained 1,600 tons of mercury, while the ocean (mixed layers) had a total of 3,600 tons of mercury. This would suggest that the post-industrial level of mercury in global mercury pool is more than three time that of the pre- industrial level of mercury in the global mercury pool, and that the annual anthropogenic contribution to the global mercury pool is about 3,400 tons.

      It's a by-product of the processing of some really common industrial chemical (chlorine maybe?) that escapes me atm, and is basically allowed to simply be released into the air thanks to how polluting regulation has been defunded over the last decade or so.

      Wow, Independents put down the centrist Blue Dogs, and somehow liberals are to blame?

      by Ezekial 23 20 on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 02:33:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Money quote from the diary: (4+ / 0-)

    It's important to keep in mind that the lack of a relationship between vaccines and autism in large population studies does not mean that there cannot be any relationship in some individual instances. Immunizations can, in rare cases, have adverse consequences; this is well-known. It remains scientifically plausible that the challenge to the immune system resulting from a vaccine (or other immunological challenges) could, in susceptible individuals, have adverse consequences for the developing brain.

    This is the poster child for argumentem ad ignorantiam. Because while it is true that absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence, it also means that the evidence showing a link between autism and vaccines is exactly equal to the evidence showing a link between autism and milk, autism and red meat, autism and smog, or autism and pootie diaries.

    That classifies this diary as CT.

    We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

    by raptavio on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:54:09 AM PST

    •  The quote was not mine, nor Olmsted's (0+ / 0-)

      but came from Dr. Geri Dawson, the Chief Science Officer of Autism Speaks and Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington.  Her CV is linked below.  Not exactly tin-foil hat stuff, so I'm not sure where all this CT stuff is coming from.
      http://faculty.washington.edu/...  

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:08:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Because you seem to be unclear on the concept (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DemFromCT, Fabian, Independant Man

        You are posing a theory -- the possibility that autism is caused to some degree by vaccines (and presumably by the ethyl mercury present in thimerosal/thiomersal) -- which, if true, would be serious and far-reaching.

        In order to make this theory have any validity, there needs to be some form of supporting evidence that shows a correlation between vaccination and the presence of autism.

        But there is none, as your own diary acknowledges through its quote of Geri Dawson.

        You are also suggesting the possibility, both in your diary and in your "supporting" quotes, that the truth of the autism-causing nature of childhood vaccinations is being covered up by Big Pharma, with the possible support of the government.

        While you stop short, very deliberatively, of making charges, you do the Glenn Beck tactic -- you ask the question, you present the possibility, as if this is an open question for debate on an equal footing with the negative.

        To use some hyperbole: If I posted a diary questioning the possibility that Critical Dune happens to have engaged in the molestation of children in the last five years, wondering aloud if it were possible, showing that the jury's out because there's no conclusive evidence either way, would you consider that a fair question?

        Or would you consider it absolutely slanderous even though I never accused you of child molestation?

        Childhood vaccination is vital to the safety of our children and the prevention of many childhood diseases that in previous times and even today in other places around the world have claimed the lives of thousands of children every year. Unfounded doubts about the safety of childhood vaccinations have led millions of kids to go unvaccinated in our country, allowing for diseases like whooping cough, rubella, measles, mumps, tetanus, and even polio to start to come back -- diseases which, when I was a child, were almost unheard of except in stories from our parents (in fact, when an ineffective batch of measles vaccine resulted in two students in my school and a handful of others catching the disease, it made national news).

        Without any clear evidence of a correlation between childhood vaccinations and autism (or any other serious ailment), opening the question of their safety (and Big Pharma keeping the truth quiet) is CT by definition -- even moreso given the sheer scope and number of studies that have sought for such a link and failed to establish one.

        We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

        by raptavio on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 01:01:23 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  You may be on to something there... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TiaRachel, raptavio

      then again probably not...

      ...link between...autism and pootie diaries.

      "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -- Jonathan Swift

      by Jane Lew on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:17:52 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I’ve never seen any proof (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greek Goddess

    vaccines cause Autism and until I see that proof my belief that vaccines are essential, will not change, but I don’t understand all the piling on of the diarist, unless someone can show me Dan Olmsted and the diarist are one in the same.

    Reading through the comments made me re read the diary, several things stood out

    By way of a disclaimer, I vaccinated both my kids (one with autism, one typical) and think immunization is an absolutely critical tool for public health worldwide.

    And this

    As a progressive, I strongly believe in public health initiatives all over the world to aggressively fight disease but think that a robust system of checks and balances is not what it ought to be in the United States.

     

    I don’t see any CT thinking coming directly from the diarist and even if there were it’s not as if the government’s hands have always been cleaned

    Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment

    I think Dan Olmsted's rhetoric is way over the top and it seems do does the diarist, although not as strongly as I do.

    Olmsted also "piles on" a bit...

    and I am in no way suggesting the government has some ulterior or nefarious motives in the Autism/Vaccine fight but I’m confused by the hostility towards a suggestion that people look at this from another perspective. Not to change any minds or even point any blame but help understand how the opposition sees things.

    I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

    by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 10:58:17 AM PST

    •  Thanks, I'm about as far from a CT (3+ / 0-)

      as it gets and, as an advocate, am regularly buttonholed by folks who "know" this that or the other thing causes autism.  Definitely! They don't. I don't and, as of today, there is no known cause.

      I saw Olmsted speak at a conference about 5 years ago in my hometown of Chicago but don't know the guy.

      That's why I like to listen to a lot of viewpoints, including Olmsted's, even though I think some viewpoints may be way off base.  There's a ton of interesting research taking place right now, some on the environmental front, that is the result of advocacy by folks like those at AoA.  Who knows, some of it may pan out or get built on down the road. A lot will be a dead end.  Most is.  

      My intent was to say "Here's what's being said about progressives on this issue and the reasons why.  Tell him where he's right or wrong".  

      Didn't work out that way but a few folks recognized it and put together some good arguments rather than sticking fingers in the ears and saying "nah,nah,nah" can't talk about this issue without screaming, which is the current state of affairs on this topic.

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:26:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Summation: We've heard it all before. (1+ / 0-)

      Numerous times.

      Plus

      The people who say "We should really consider this!" generally appear to have no interest in what can be done for autistics now.

      Preventing disease and disability is great, but no one has even managed to suggest and test any actual MECHANISM for the disease!

      What we have more often than not is endless correlation, with implied causation.

      There is at least ONE genetic disorder with a strong link to autism.  Fragile X syndrome includes cognitive deficits, seizure disorders and AUTISM.  In fact, it has the highest incidence of autism period.  

      I keep wanting Jenny McCarthy to have herself and her son tested for Fragile X.  But that would be unethical....

      Show me the POLICY!

      by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:40:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  As I said (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fabian, triv33, Greek Goddess

        I do not share in the opinion that vaccines cause Autism and I can certainly understand the frustration with hearing the opposite position taken time and time again, without these same people coming up with answers but, no where did the diarist agree that vaccines cause Autism and from my POV the diarist is also looking for answers. Is that a reason to beat up on him/her?

        I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

        by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 11:51:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  If they want answers (0+ / 0-)

          then dump the long since discredited studies.

          If they want answers
          then look for actual mechanisms.

          If they want answers
          then look for known disorders with increased incidence of autism.

          I would entertain any theory that vaccines cause autism if only there was some proposed MECHANISM for it to do so.

          In fact, everything I have seen with regards to autism implies there are clusters of symptoms.

          Seizure disorder & autism => implies Fragile X.  Children with both of these should be tested.

          Autism and immune and allergy problems => implies potential inflammatory problem.  
          Possible treatment with immune suppressors and/or anti-inflammatories.

          Autism and food intolerances => implies possible metabolic dysfunction.
          Test for possible metabolic disorders.

          THIS is useful.  These approaches may not determine what "causes" autism but it can help affected people.

          The only way to test for a vaccine connection is with a control group that isn't vaccinated.  Frankly, I would keep my kids far far away from any child that is potentially a vector for a dangerous communicable disease.  I have no idea how one would ethically create such a control group, although I suggest that if someone does that the waivers and informed consents should be triple checked by an experienced group of lawyers.

          Since the incidence of autism is so low, you'd have to have a control group numbering in the thousands.  I'd be seriously NIMBY with that idea.  Hundreds or thousands of babies and children that were capable of transmitting half a dozen potentially lethal diseases?  You can have them.  I don't want them.

          Show me the POLICY!

          by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 12:36:46 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm a parent (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            triv33, Greek Goddess

            and although she is grown and does not have Autism, I know I would look high and low for any answers I thought would explain any health issues she had. I would not however,presume to tell a parent what they should or should not do when researching health issues pertaining to their child. If you agree fine, if you disagree fine but I didn't get into this conservation to fight with anyone. I did think, and continue think, the vitriol toward the diarist was/is unfair.

            I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

            by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 01:10:57 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Vaccines don't cause autism. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              JupiterIslandGirl, Greek Goddess

              Vaccines aren't 100% safe.
              I can agree with that.

              Vaccines are tested WAY more than any drug big Pharma makes, so if anyone has an axe to grind with big Pharma they should complain about off label uses of drugs that have had NO studies for that.

              Autism points to something persistent and often very early in development that just isn't quite right.

              It's in the brain, not the gut - although a disorder can affect both areas.

              It's probably an enzyme involved in protein synthesis or destruction.  (If you know anything about enzymes, that statement is hilariously redundant.)  I doubt it is a missing enzyme since those tend to kill, quickly or slowly.  But generally quickly.  So it's probably a defective enzyme(s), due to a defective gene(s).

              Enough to cause problems, not enough to cause major neurological dysfunction.  Sneaky, subtle and probably caused multiple mutations on one or more chromosomes.

              Vaccines don't cause genetic mutations.  Mercury doesn't cause genetic mutations.  Heavy metal toxicity is not the same as autism.  Heavy metal toxicity is relatively easy to test for - provided you use a accredited lab and not some hack lab that has had its accreditation yanked.

              When you look at the whole autism picture, some things become more plausible and probable and others become less so...to the point where they can be discarded and ignored.

              Correlation is easy.  Causation is difficult.  Pinpointing an actual mechanism for something we haven't even defined accurately - incredibly difficult.

              People like easy.  Show them a correlation and tell them you have the answer and they'll jump on it, especially if they haven't got anything else.

              Tell them you aren't sure what autism IS, let alone what causes it and they'll stop listening.  They want answers and you haven't got any.

              Junk science rules because it offers what people want:  
              Answers.  Now.
              It offers them what they want:
              A villain to blame.
              And best of all, it doesn't cost them anything.

              Show me the POLICY!

              by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 01:40:59 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I understand what you are saying (0+ / 0-)

                but I don't see how that explains why people beat up on the diarist.

                You made very succinct points and not once did you call  the diarist out or try to degrade. If I had seen more of what you did, as oppose to the other, you and I would not even be having this conversation.

                I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

                by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 01:47:04 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Sorry (0+ / 0-)

                  maybe I do

                  A villain to blame.
                  And best of all, it doesn't cost them anything.

                  I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

                  by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 01:48:35 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Mostly we want people to DUMP (0+ / 0-)

                    the junk science.

                    We've told them it's junk.  Repeatedly.

                    But they keep saying "open mind" and "investigate all possibilities".  The whole Vaxx thing is slightly more plausible than Aliens causing autism only because we know there are vaccines, but we aren't sure there are aliens!

                    Chasing the vaccine "connection" is NOT useful.  It's a red herring, a dead end, a waste of time and money UNLESS you happen to be raking in the bucks by pushing that particular CT.

                    ZOMG!  It's Big Government under the influence of Big Pharma destroying the lives of our children!  Please buy Jenny McCarthy's latest mish mash of junk science and tear jerking melodrama!

                    Show me the POLICY!

                    by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 03:58:21 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Wouldn't it be easier (0+ / 0-)

                      to state this as oppose to jumping all over a parent who has stated they have a child with Autism?

                      Mostly we want people to DUMP the junk science.

                      No where have I refuted any of the legitimate scientific findings, I am thoroughly convinced. Apparently the diarist isn't but it didn't stop her/him from having both children vaccinated. That tells me she/he is not off somewhere in la la land.

                      I don't know, maybe I missed the DK email that said I needed to meet a confrontation quota, so in the words of Emily Patella.....never mind.

                      I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

                      by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 04:15:00 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  A parent who has a child with autism? (0+ / 0-)

                        Cool!  Can I get an exception from logic, reason and science because my son has autism too?

                        Sympathy, understanding - yes.  Tossing science out the window - no.

                        Show me the POLICY!

                        by Fabian on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 05:06:30 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Where did I mention giving (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Greek Goddess

                          any exceptions? The diarist has a child with Autism, they are looking for answers and according to many, in the wrong place but in spite of questioning the established wisdom, the diarist had both of their children vaccinated. How does that equal throwing reason and science out the window?

                          If you go back to the beginning of my conversation you will see my question had nothing to do with  Autism  findings and everything to do with the verbal abuse directed at the diarist.

                          Is there any reason we can't address that one single issue, or by asking another question am I setting myself up to go all around the bend, again, and still not get an answer? Rhetorical question feel free to answer, or not. This is giving me a headache so if I don't respond, my apologies. Not being rude, just going back to finding the place where I lost my peace of mind. CIAO

                          I will Not give up, I will Not give in, I will Not quit!

                          by JupiterIslandGirl on Mon Nov 15, 2010 at 05:26:54 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Thanks again, JIG. Final thoughts below. (0+ / 0-)

                            I thought I stated clearly that I personally have no fixed ideology on this issue and the minority anti-vax wing disturbs me too. I'm no scientist but pro-vax, as are many "autism parents" in this debate, despite being painted otherwise, as Omlsted points out in his piece.

                            This weekend, there will be anti-mercury PSA's shown in a ton of movie theatres all over the country pre- "Harry Potter".  The issue, in my view, is "What should the public health complex do to maximize safety and uptake rates in the face of this long term opposition that doesn't appear to be going away anytime soon?"

                            Mandate jabs and threaten exclusion from school, work, or even jail? Should Pediatricians be instructed to bully patients or kick patients to the curb because they have doubts or want an alternative schedule? Should healthcare workers be fired if they refuse flu shots?

                            A prominent, mainstream pediatrician, Dr. Robert Sears, offers some seemingly reasonable advice for doubting parents:  http://www.askdrsears.com/...
                            He ain't anti-vaccine.

                            Industry counters him via their main spokesperson (a vaccine patent holder and expert on immunology...not autism) Dr. Paul Offit here: http://pediatrics.aappublications.or...

                            I don't think the HHS, CDC, NIH or AAP's path is the right approach, since the toothpaste is clearly out of the tube and amplified by the Jenny McCarthy wing...both approaches impede progress on the issue and negatively impact public health, IMHO.

                            I'm a believer in immunization as a public good, especially in the third world, where basic health supports like safe water, sanitation, and food safety don't exist.  But, inspite of the "it's only an airplane away" argument from Offit and others, I do question whether the most robust safety construct is currently in place, given the current "one size fits all" policy in the US. Bush et. al. gutted these agencies and his pick now heads Merck's vaccine division post CDC. That bothers me, given his "fox guarding the henhouse philosophy".  

                            My fear is that my goal of minimizing the inevitable adverse reactions while increasing uptake rates has been pushed to the sidelines while Walgreens, CVS and others in their business plans emphasize immunizations as a "profit center" for their businesses.  Here is a link to WAG's plan to increase this segment by a huge factor.  It's not CT, it's a business plan.  300K Flu shots in '08 to 7mm in '10. For WAG alone.
                            http://files.shareholder.com/...

                            But side effects are real and the consequences for affected people and families should not be minimized or ignored, especially if the the outcome is autism, "autism-like" symptoms, or any another diagnosis.

                            If one doesn't think any adverse reactions even happen they ought to take a look here (please note that the the government itself posits that these are likely underreported statistics on VAERS): http://vaers.hhs.gov/...

                            For anyone who has seriously studied the subject (and that's not me, I'm no scientist and focused on other autism issues), the push from industry (not just pharma, but retail like WAG and CVS, too) to expand the schedule with stuff, like Gardasil for all teens, to maximize profit (all in a "no fault" scheme) is troubling.  Personally, I don't think it's the "black and white" debate over public health that some knee jerk commenters above believe that it is. There is real damage being done to a minority of folks. How much is acceptable for the public good or herd immunity? I think this topic should be open to discussion and not ceded to the medical or public health guild. The question is whether we're doing enough to minimize damage or treating the issue as a "sacred cow".  Sadly, most of the above comments point to the latter.

                            Thanks again for your spot on comments and understanding of the nature of my (not CT) post.    

                            "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

                            by Critical Dune on Thu Nov 18, 2010 at 08:43:19 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Self fulfilling prophecy (0+ / 0-)

                            This weekend, there will be anti-mercury PSA's shown in a ton of movie theatres all over the country pre- "Harry Potter".  The issue, in my view, is "What should the public health complex do to maximize safety and uptake rates in the face of this long term opposition that doesn't appear to be going away anytime soon?"

                            Those are "anti-vaccine" PSA's, and they are funded in part by none other than that paragon of science Jenny McCarthy. The public health community needs help from our wonderful news and entertainment media, too many of which still paint this as a "controversy". But among bona-fide researchers the science is settled. Dozens of studies, conducted over two decades and across three continents, have looked for and failed to find an association between vaccines and autism. The controversy exists on fringe anti-science sites like AgeOfAutism.com (where Dan Olmstead is editor), Fox News, and vapid talk shows. The reason this manufactured controversy isn't going away soon enough is because too many voices are telling us this controversy isn't going away - the very definition of a self fulfilling prophecy.

                            The efficacy of the nation's vaccine program, honed over decades of research and rigorous public health monitoring, is still a creature of public confidence. Those who attack vaccine safety with misinformation and junk science undermine that confidence, and put children at risk. I'm glad that so many in the progressive community understand this. Keep fighting the good fight.

  •  GE created Autism Speaks (0+ / 0-)

    Critical Dune,
    I find it hard to believe your a progressive when you quote such organizations as Autism Speaks, an organization created by GE.

    Your response to Dan's article reveals your lack of knowledge on current autism research. Relying on statements from AS doesn't cut it.

    If you want the label progressive then earn it. Do your own research. Stop relying on corporation edited articles from mainstream media.

    •  Not sure where "you're" coming from... (0+ / 0-)

      but it is quite clear you don't know the first thing about the current (or past) state of autism research.

      I've been in the front line trench for nearly two decades, friend, and there is very little that I am not aware of, whether it's mainstream or alternative research, so...unless you have any facts...please do a little research yourself...like googling "IMFAR" for starters.

      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

      by Critical Dune on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 05:57:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Dugmaze's "current research" (0+ / 0-)

        Dugmaze is a regular on the anti-vaccine sites. His "current autism research" is either junk science published in fringe journals, or gross misinterpretations of legitimate studies. The anti-vaccine movement has no problem hijacking science in order to justify its foregone conclusions.

        •  While I don't share your apparent (0+ / 0-)

          certainty on this issue that I've noted on other blogs (I'm really not sure where the immune dysfunction/autism path for some subtypes will lead and don't think the one size fits all vaccine approach is beyond reproach), I am a huge fan of peer reviewed real science, so I think we are "in synch" on that front.  Too many folks have been had by hucksters selling quick fixes, when the (scarce) money could've or should've been spent on ABA or other early interventions. Though, in the absence of any real answers, I try to keep a wide open mind and am appalled at the demonization and name calling from extremists in both camps. The "anti-vax" label being exhibit "a". The CT stuff being exhibit "b".

          Pardo's stuff is indeed interesting but it's really, really early and, like many studies or approaches, people grasp onto them too tightly.  Who knows where it will eventually lead?  I wish the media would always insert "some" before "autism" and use the word "may" a lot more than they do.

          Thanks for the comment.

          "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

          by Critical Dune on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 07:11:21 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The anti-vaccine label (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Kristjan Wager

            The "anti-vax" label is an accurate description of Mr. Olmsted and his website. It's one thing to ask questions, another to hurl unfounded insinuations, then recoil in horror when you're called out on them.

            Mr. Olmsted has a long history of anti-vaccine activism. In 2005, he wrote about scouring the hills and dales of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, looking for autistic Amish children, and only found two. It is a given in Olmsted's circles that the Amish don't vaccinate, so if autism is rare in that community, then that would be evidence that vaccines cause autism.

            A couple problems here. First of all, Amish children are diagnosed with autism. How do I know this? I called the cryptically-named Clinic for Special Children in Strasburg, PA, and spoke with a pediatrician. Olmsted never spoke with anyone at the clinic, and didn't even try until after his poorly researched hit piece was published. The clinic also holds a weekly vaccination clinic, and has for about 20 years.

            If Olmsted was a "pro-safe vaccine" activist, he would admit to his mistake, and refute his prior claims that the Amish don't vaccinate and don't have autism. Of course he's not done that. Instead, he's defended his UPI story by telling us the Amish have the wrong kind of autism (syndromic v idiopathic). So far he's "no comment" on whether the Amish vaccinate.

            •  Thanks, ANB, but not going there... (0+ / 0-)

              Its clear you have an axe to grind but that's between you and Olmsted.  As I stated earlier, I'm not focused on this issue much and not a scientist...I just keep an eye on the debate and only the components where I think real policy issues exist, like informed consent v. mandates and the current safety construct, which I think is flawed in terms of checks and balances. I think reasonable people can discuss these issues without resorting to demonization.  Instead, my efforts are on services and supports for the entire ASD population. When Olmsted called out Kos, I thought he had some interesting and provacative policy arguments.

              Whether you think the incidence of autism is growing/brand new/always been there/or whatever, the current state of affairs for adults stinks, especially where I live (IL ranks 48th of 50 states for community based supports an programs for developmentally disabled adults).  Most of the shaky infrastructure was built for the Down syndrome or MR population, has a big institutional focus, and not only doesn't work, is probably illegal and is demonstrably dangerous. Too much to do on that front to worry about what the latest PR volley from the Offit or McCarthy camps may hold.  

              "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

              by Critical Dune on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 08:36:20 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  "interesting and provacative" (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Kristjan Wager

                When Olmsted called out Kos, I thought he had some interesting and provacative policy arguments

                Too bad they aren't also constructive. Isn't that what you are looking for - constructive help? Yes, support of autistic adults stinks in Illinois. It's not much better in Wisconsin, where I live. So what does Olmsted's provocative and misleading rhetoric have to do with that?

                My "axe to grind" is not just with Olmsted. It's with the whole anti-vaccine movement, which is more like a cult, really. It's a terrible distraction to the real challenge of accommodating children and adults with special needs into society which, apparently, is a goal you and I share. This is not the time to confer legitimacy on Olmsted, Jenny McCarthy, and their fellow travelers. But that's exactly what you've done in this post. Instead of considering the source, you lazily commend Olmsted for being provocative and interesting. I could say the same thing about Limbaugh, Beck, and Coulter. Provocative like a bomb thrower, interesting as a car wreck.

                Don't we parents deserve better?

                •  ANB - I guess the difference (0+ / 0-)

                  between us is that I think the current coordinated effort to bludgeon anyone (from Jenny McCarthy to Drs. Healy or Sears) who questions current public health policy or wants to address patient concerns re the vaccine schedule is a strategy doomed to failure.  

                  To be sure, people don't get science like you do but they sure know when they're told to, "shut up and do what I tell you", if they ask any questions.  That's not the way to handle the issue in my view. You may disagree, of course.

                  Whether it's ANB, the AAP, Singer, Offit, the Chicago Tribune, or any other source, it seems crystal clear to me that the demonization is not helping increase uptake rates or making questions go away and is unlikely to going forward. The volume keeps getting louder and louder.  

                  I do agree that it does suck the air out of the room on fundamental issues of support and services.  That's why I want people to understand their differences and stop yelling, which clearly isn't happening.  For example, I think the "resolution" of the apparently never ending, high volume, and tiresome Wakefield controversy, if anything, probably did more harm than good to vaccine boosters because it kept fueling the fire in the media.

                  I would like to see the whole discussion reset via an aggressive initiative on the part of our government to get some fresh eyeballs on vaccine safety issues who aren't compromised by academic/commercial/political interests. It strikes me as too cozy a club and a revolving door without adequate checks and balances.  Mandating gardasil for my typical teenaged son seems odd, and a "rush to judgement". Many might disagree.  Cervical cancer is not a small problem but what is the cost side of the equation? One can't sell the benefit without disclosing costs. The "no fault" scheme is also very troubling in terms of policy (and apparently to Dr. Offit as well).  

                  Ah well. I still think Olmsted was both provacative and interesting in his piece and he's either going to be credible or not on his own.  Thanks again for the comments.  

                  "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

                  by Critical Dune on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 10:20:56 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  conflict of interest (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Kristjan Wager

                    I would like to see the whole discussion reset via an aggressive initiative on the part of our government to get some fresh eyeballs on vaccine safety issues who aren't compromised by academic/commercial/political interests.

                    Good luck with that. Anybody with the intellectual chops to analyze vaccine safety probably has a job, and it's not stocking shelves at WalMart.

                    The science already exists to tell us that vaccines don't cause autism, and that the diseases they protect us against are far worse. Do you really believe that new evidence will convince vaccine rejecting parents that their fears are misplaced? You can't reason a person out of a position he didn't reason himself into.

                    •  Thanks for calling him out. (0+ / 0-)

                      Some people love to sit on the fence and watch the battle being fought without participating themselves. They may even offer some advice ever now and then, but refuse to stand on their own principles.
                      Do me a favor and keep tugging on him because when you let go, he'll fall over on my side.

                    •  Yes, ANB, most fears will be put to rest (0+ / 0-)

                      if a more transparent construct is put in place that recognizes the reality of the "good" of herd immunity (and I do think it's a demonstrable good, unlike the small minority of anti-vax folks) balanced with the rare, or not so rare, side effects related to vaccine insult.  Granting opt outs for people with genetic compromises like a family history of autoimmune disorders, and never giving a sick kid a jab is a good start in my mind.  Also, Hep B on day one? Most MDs I know personally opt out with their own kids till at least 3 months...it's a jab to fight an STD and "hard" shot to take, from what I hear.  

                      Most folks are on the fence ANB, don't know squat about autism, and are not ideologues.  Most Pedias and Public Health experts, like Offit, do not know much about autism, either.  It is not their field.  

                      You apparently focus on the people who populate sites like AoA (and I am not confused in the least about the difference between AoA and AS) to try to stomp out questions or dissent, but it is clearly a failed strategy.  You aren't winning the field. The fear and assault campaign isn't working, ANB. What's next? Do you have a plan B?  Public health goals dictate that you ought to have one.  What is it?

                      In the meantime, you may want to read some of the writings of the late scientist Jacob Bronowski on the subject of certainty.  They have influenced me a lot and may inform you a bit.
                      http://en.wikipedia.org/...

                      "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

                      by Critical Dune on Mon Nov 22, 2010 at 06:23:42 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  lol. Welcome to the antivax world (0+ / 0-)

                    Welcome, you've just been inducted into the anti-vax world. It may take a while to get settled in but don't worry you'll learn to like it.
                    See, I'm not anti-vax either. My whole family is vaccinated and I push for the proper vaccines especially in developing countries. But in your rush to judge me, you left yourself wide open to the pharma zombies.
                    You say you've been in the trenches for twenty years. BS. You've been on the fence for twenty years. Jump off and become a real progressive and help us push for stronger regulations and real reform.

                •  This article from '08 kind of sums up (0+ / 0-)

                  my unease with the current construct and points out the issues that ought to be addressed in the autism/vaccine discussion, if one wants to maximize uptake rates and public safety.  

                  Reading the comments of the prominent Doctors quoted below, especially ones like this:

                  "There was incredible pressure from industry and politics," said Dr. Jon Abramson, a professor of pediatrics at Wake Forest University who was chairman of the committee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that recommended the vaccine for all girls once they reached 11 or 12.

                  and this:

                  This big push is making people crazy — thinking they’re bad moms if they don’t get their kids vaccinated," said Dr. Abby Lippman, a professor at McGill University in Montreal and policy director of the Canadian Women’s Health Network. Canada will spend $300 million on a cervical cancer vaccine program.

                  and this:

                  "Merck lobbied every opinion leader, women’s group, medical society, politicians, and went directly to the people — it created a sense of panic that says you have to have this vaccine now," said Dr. Diane Harper, a professor of medicine at Dartmouth Medical School.

                  are very troubling to me and point to a poor policy and institutions with muddy missions.  I don't think the NY Times dabbles in conspiracy theories and nor do I.
                  http://www.nytimes.com/...

                  "Those dunes are to the Midwest what the Grand Canyon is to Arizona and the Yosemite is to California." - Carl Sandburg

                  by Critical Dune on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 11:20:47 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

  •  These comments are disturbing (0+ / 0-)

    For my first time on Daily KOS I'm getting a bad impression.
    All I see are hate filled comments will little to no evidence to back them up. Name calling, assumptions, quoting Fox News, and uncivil accusations are what I would expect on The Tea Party blog, not on a self-proclaimed progressive site.
    I'm seeing a trend here and on other progressive sites. And it's the so called "Modern Progressive". The Center for American Progress is leading the way with President Obama as the captain. Well there is no such thing as a modern progressive. Learn your history because true progressive people died making it.

  •  Kids' lab tests trump government statistics (0+ / 0-)

    I'm horrified by how many comments prove Olmsted's points about the callousness of many progressives. Some people prefer to cling to falsified government statistics rather than look directly at the health records of living, breathing children... albeit children with asthma and allergies.

    Consumers are vigilant about demanding recalls of unsafe cars that hurt people, but are tragically myopic regarding the paradox of vaccine injury. The vaccine program has no realistic consumer protections. Look at all the cases in the NVICP, or the reports to VAERS -- these people are left twisting slowly in the wind.

    Documentation abounds showing vaccines can cause demyelination, autoimmunity, development of MBP antibodies, mitochondrial dysfunction, glutathione deficiency disorder, methylation disorder, chronic neuroinflammation, gastroinestinal disease, microgliosis, tics and seizure disorders.

    Pretending vaccine injury is nonexistent merely ensures that vaccines are not improved and more people will suffer health damage. Where is the compassion? Why are so many children written off as collateral damage in the war on disease? What if it was your child? Or you?

    The vaccine injured need your help -- not another source of harm.

    •  VAERS? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kristjan Wager

      Really? It's a voluntary reporting system. If a child has a vaccine, and gets sick nine later, the parents can still file a VAERS report. Several of the Gardasil deaths occurred more than six months after the vaccine was given. Another Gardasil death was a drug overdose that occurred weeks later. Another is a car fatality. You could file a report that a vaccine turned you into a Republican. It doesn't matter. It's raw data.

      Who is pretending vaccine injury doesn't occur? That's a straw man. The questions are "how often and how serious?" You won't find the answer in VAERS.

  •  Vaccines can in some cased cause autism. (0+ / 0-)

    I have been a liberal my whole life and my grandson has autism and vaccines with absolutely no doubt caused his condition.
    He is four we are working with a DAN doctor and he is doing much better, but he still has not recovered his ability to speak.
    There is money in vaccines and if you don't believe it read this article about Merck's attempt to rescue their falling stock value after Vioxx. http://health.dailynewscentral.com/...
    Incidentally, the vaccine proquad(mentioned in article above) is the procuring cause of my grandson's autism.  It was removed from the market a year after my grandson received it, but was recently brought back ( a new version) Kaiser just recently did a study about this new vaccine and suggested if you have any fear of seizures with your child don't let them have this vaccine.
    My grandson's immune system was already displaying issues he developed asthma at six months after receiving 5 vaccines at his fifth month appointment.
    Two days after receiving proquad he was spinning like a top and it was all downhill from there. He became compulsive. He was very sick for over two years (diarrhea everyday all day), he started drooling,he lost eye contact; by two and a half he had lost pretty much all of his abilities(would race, play soccer, basketball) and words.
    Autism is the result of an immune reaction. The immune system in many of these children resembles a person with AIDS. They are so sick.
    Beware all of you doubters this is going to come back and bite you in the butt. Children are developing many different immune system issues that have never been seen at any time in the numbers of today.
    And for any of you old timers like myself if you lived on the west coast and received a Polio vaccine you might want to check into the SV40 virus that was in those vaccines. It just might be related to the cancer you have now. The CDC even has a page about it, but I would read elsewhere if you really are interested.

    •  Alleged vaccine injury (0+ / 0-)

      Did the boy's parents file a case with the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?

      •  vaccine injury (0+ / 0-)

        Yes there was an attempt to do this, but his parents are both in school and are young. There were no attorneys in this state that were handling any additional cases. So the only choice was to go with an out of state attorney.  And the attorneys were all  very discouraging. The vaccine court was set up to benefit the pharma companies and to be a road block to justice.
         

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