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June 20, 2005

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I agree, I have had regard for him too. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt for a while until he has a chance to reply to the comprehensive debunkings the article has provoked. *If* he responds, which I certainly hope he will do.

Excellent work. But beware, you're likely to draw the ire of the mercury-autism activists, as I did when I stumbled into this issue.

Wow, I can't believe you read the whole thing! Thanks, great job. I've always had immense respect for RFK Jr., so this whole thing is extremely disturbing to me. I always felt he was a man of integrity and science. I'm very disheartened to find that he seems to have turned a corner and abandoned those principles. Perhaps, as Amanda commented above, he will respond to the commentary on his article and change his way of thinking on this issues.

Great post Skeptico! A thrilling tale of corruption and incompetence that had me glued to the screen from start to finish. A real screen-scroller!

My guess would be that this 'journalist' is simply succumbing to confirmation bias - giving credence to poor evidence because it confirms his natural desire to regard big pharma as gargantuan and corrupt while being excessively skeptical of any evidence advanced by pharma companies or those seeming to represent their point of view.

It's an easy trap to fall into, though rarely is it done so spectacularly by someone who should know better (though the fruhfallah over Schiavo springs to mind).

Thank you. At least you cited pages from the report. Kennedy didn't.

He was on Imus recently going on about how there are all these sudden increases in autism in different countries but he doesn't back any of it up. He was like raving almost. It's like he's caught up in the "horror" of it even though there's nothing there to be horrified by.

Or he's just a big liar.

Autism Diva

Great job. And thanks for the link.

By the way, this may be common knowledge, but there is a Japanese study that was just completed that refutes the anti-thimerosal crowd. Very similar to the Canada and Denmark data. I have not seen anyone reference the study. I have not read the results, but link to a press release

http://soapgun.blogspot.com/2005/06/japanese-autism-study.html

The data seems pretty convincing. No link.

*Great* work here. And for a visual look at the retreat center "nestled in the wooded farmland next to the Chattahoochee River", look here

(zoom in and click on the Satellite link)

I live near this place, and it's smack in the middle of the suburban "sprawl" that environmentalists like Kennedy are constantly criticizing.

Thank you David Schmitt!

That's way too funny.

When does Skeptico get to go on "Montel Williams"?

This garbage is getting the goofy talk show treatment today. It was recorded a while back and has David Kirby but not Kennedy.


Thanks for putting the issue in perspective. Hopefully parents and others for whom the issue of whether or not to vaccinate is of real concern will read this as well.

From a practical consideration, two issues that matter as much, if not more, than the 'pumping poison into the baby' argument used at 909hotshot and other anti-vax sites - the two that worried me the most were these:

1) Proper handling of the vaccine once it left the manufacturer. This concern came up after I found a FAQ from a vaccine manufacturer (I since changed computers and lost the bookmarks). The question I remember was this: "The bottle of vaccine was left on the counter next to the refrigerator for the afternoon, can I still use it?"

2) Making sure the doctors follow the CDC-recommended contraindications for receiving a vaccination.

My recollection from reading the anti-vax sites were that most of the stories, while sad, relayed some situation where the child should not have been vaccinated anyway.

There were cases on those sites where the kid was running a fever, where the family had a history of allergic reaction to eggs, one where the child had a strong reaction to the first dose and, apparently, a much worse reaction to the second. Each of those situations are ones where the CDC does not recommend the child being vaccinated in the first place. In some cases the doctor may have been at fault for not taking a complete history, in others the family may not have not followed up with the doctor, I don't know.

So there are some concerns that parents should have regarding immunizations, just not diploid human cells and trace elements of thimerosal, imo.

What I do know is that reactions like the one Michelle Malkin had to her child's pediatrician are a bit over the top.

I am a pediatriciand and epidemiologist who worked at CDC, has attended ACIP meetings, etc... and a father. The link with autism is questionable, but I still don't want mercury (known toxic in the cumalative does received) repeatadly injected into my kids when there are better alternatives out there. Inudustry has delayed making changes in U.S. due to usual short term cost and corporate inertia. Kennedy's article has problems, but the vaccine industry has acted in unethical ways before and about the broader issues of thiomersol's potential toxicity. Alas, CDC's record in go-along to get along group think is not good (abetting DOD misdirection of agent orange studies, Mag gas additive, dioxin, condoms & HIV transmission, abstinance only. This is not as one sided as this site implies.

I also noticed that Steve has posted exactly the same thing to my blog here and to Pharyngula here.

Dr. Steve....

Thank you. No one says thimerosal needs to stay. But Mercury in thimerosal does not or can not cause autism if we are going to look at the neurobiology and the epidemiology.

Did the thimerosal cause some kind of kidney damage or something else? I have no idea, but it doesn't cause autism.

There's no evidence for that at all. This is all bogus.

The autistic community ought to have a voice in this. This isn't just about (white middle class) parents who are destraught over having handicapped kids. There are bigger issues.

The autistic adults sit on the side lines and think; "this like you are all arguing over what causes blackness -and the horror of it- in front of the black people."

Autism Diva

I am quite intrigued at the strong feelings stirred by rfk jrs article. When i chose to vaccinate my child, i consulted my doctor who like all of you did not believe in any of this and MMR worries. Guess what, i just spent thousands of dollars in tests trying to find out if my son (now 4) has mercury poisoning.

There are many studies showing no link but conversely, there is too much causality between a rigorous vaccination schedules and the rise in autism. I doubt any of you will now freely vaccinate newborns (your child or grandchild) with thimerosal containing shot. Whether it causes autism or not, it should not be given to any child (or adult). How much did the drug companies know about potential damage from thimerosal, i would seriously look into it further.

If you want to quote the Jap, Canadian, Denmark study, you should look into their govt mandated vaccination schedules vs the US and how it has changed. And also how they collate new cases of autism over the years. It will be like comparing apples to oranges.

Check out www.generationrescue.org. Its easy to proclaim "no link!" when you don't have a special needs child, but it's a whole different world for us in our journey to find out what really happened to our children. The way RFK jr's article was written sadly has not helped our cause as it seems all of you are nitpicking the details but not the main issue.

Parents.com (the website associated with Parents magazine, has a bulletin board.

There have been some heavy duty arguments there between the generation rescue folks, some general Autism-is-mercury-poisoning folks and some others opposing them.

It's really fun to see the autism-mercury and "generation rescue" folks get flustered and call whoever argues with them "pharmaceutical company shills" or "pharmco whores", that sort of stuff. There was also a big thing where they couldn't deal with the fact that there were 3 or 4 people all arguing with them and so they decided that in fact all of them were the same person with different ID's.

It looked like one of the arguers *against* the mercury and anti-vax bunch was a doctor, he or she had lots' of data to contradict them and they wouldn't budge, but just resorted to name calling, basically.

At any rate, someone sent this to me, it's regarding a post to the Parents.com board. I should explain, the "generation rescue" web site was founded by an investment junior tycoon or something. His little organization has "Rescue Angels" who basically seem to be there to give out bad medical advice to parents who just got a diagnosis of autism spectrum for their child, they tell the parents to go find a "DAN" doctor and start chelation with Rashid Buttar's worthless Buttar lotion, etc.

Here's what was sent to me:

Just found this gem from John Best, Jr., of Londonderry, New Hampshire. He is a "Rescue Angel."
He got called on it by a couple of parents, including another "Rescue Angel," and eventually modified his statement.

Still, the outburst is yet another good demonstration of the contempt that's not far below the surface.


bettwice33
Posts: 9
Registered: May 18, 2005
Re: why is there bashing and controversy on the Autism Board???????
Posted: Jun 3, 2005 12:28 PM Reply

The problem is that doctors keep telling people that autism is not caused by mercury to cover their asses.

They screwed up by giving our kids way too much mercury.

Those of us who know this don't like seeing unknowing parents allowing their kids to rot in the abyss of autism.

Wake up and smell the coffee is approprite. Anyone who is not chelating to get rid of the mercury is guilty of child abuse.

Every doctor who is not telling their patients to chelate is guilty of malpractice.

There was no autism until Eli Lilly started putting mercury in vaccines.

Aside from fragile X which some say is not really autism, it is all caused by mercury.

Any parent who listens to the doctors tell them that there is no known cause or cure for autism is too damn stupid to have kids. "


So go to generation rescue to get balanced scientific info? hah! One might mention that the parents who believe this mercury stuff are in the minority of parents of kids with autism and some are very willing to verbally abuse other parents who don't agree.

anonymatsui

Frequently, the last refuge of alties when they confronted with evidence they cannot counter is to start labeling their opponents as "pharmaceutical company shills" or some such thing. I've been called a company shill so many times that I can't remember. My usual response is to fervently wish that pharmaceutical companies would start paying me to post what I would post anyway. ;-)

It goes to show you how effective vaccines have been, in that most parents now EXPECT all of their children to survive and be healthy.

It wasn't too long ago that kids would return to school after summer vacation and have several classmates dead from polio, mumps, measles, etc.

What would happen if everybody stopped immunizing their children for a few years? What would the infant mortality rate be?

Research needs to be done to find out about the rise in autism. Perhaps there is some link to heavy metals, but not in vaccines. That would explain a very weak statistical link with mercury-containing vaccines, but not a clear causal relationship.

I don't trust pharmaceutical companies, either, but vaccines ARE necessary. Anybody who thinks otherwise needs to read a little history about disease. In this day and place, we simply cannot comprehend the death wrought by disease. The historical norm was to lose at least one child to disease at a young age. Healthy adults were often disabled or killed as well.

The fact that mercury-containing vaccines have been out of use for a number of years in countries where autism is still rising would tend to point in another direction. Probably some as-yet-unidentified environmental pollutant, or a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental exposure.


ho the fuck are those morons ho claomthat Robert Kennedy is wrong?

This ebside is run by some MORON on indudtry payroll who doesn't know what the fuck he is talking or he is being paid to dissiminate serious medical facts.!

We have already quacks like Stephen Barrett and ronald Gotts, morons like John Stossesl and others milk men trying to revolutionise the world by providing fraudulent informations!!

http://www.campaignfortruth.com/latestnews/krafeldandlanka.htm

Timetoshut down nthis ebsite due to pure FRAUD!

"Not a moron" has just provided grave doubts about whether his 'nym was chosen correctly.

He jump to the "company shill" attack that alties are so fond of rather quickly.

Orac,

I read your blog and I have to say I'm not impressed. You chose one quote to discuss. How do you explain the Simpsonwood quote by the doctor who states that he won't let his grandson get vaccinated with thimerosal? How can you not have a problem with that? When you go to a doctor (or any professional for that matter) you expect them to give you the same advice that they would give to their own family. Clearly at least one doctor from Simpsonwood believed that we ordinary folk are not as important as his family.

Also, if you really read the transcript you will see that the results they are discussing is not the same as what was published in Pediatrics. At Simpsonwood, even though most of the autism correlation had already been "hidden" through data manipulation they did find a correlation with other disorders (I'm thinking it was ADHD but it has been awhile since I read it). Anyway, these other correlations somehow disappear by the time the study is published in Pediatrics.

You also chose not to touch the IOM quotes. Avoidance is not a great defense.

Your Leo Kanner & Asperger history is interesting but it doesn't mean very much other than possibly to find fault with Kennedy by way of a technicality. Mercury does not need to be he cause of ALL autism to show that thimerosal is dangerous and can cause autism in some people.

You completely missed the point regarding the Lilly safety study with thimerosal. No one is saying that thimerosal caused the death of those patients suffering from meningitis. The point is that the safety test was a joke. Thimerosal was ruled safe after it was determined to have not caused the death of those sick people. I challenge you to find a study that shows thimerosal to be safe.

You mention the Geier's conflict of interest but ignore the huge conflicts of interest on the other side. The CDC mandated thimerosal for children and was then asked to determine if thimerosal was safe. Talk about conflict of interest. There's a reason why most schools don't like students grade themselves. What about the conflict of interest with the lead author of the CDC studies being employed by Glaxo SmithKline?

Your statements and links regarding the fallicy of the autism epidemic prove nothing.

Here is the situation.

Mercury is a known neurotoxin.

Thimerosal is 50% ethyl mercury by weight.

Methyl mercury is known to cause developmental delay and pregnant women are advised to not consume fish that contain mercury.

Thimerosal was recently shown to convert to inorganic mercury and accumulate in the brain in larger quantities than methyl mercury.

Thimerosal causes Apoptosis in
neuroblastoma cells .

The amount of thimerosal given to children was increased substantially in the late 80's and then again in the early 90's. Autism rates increase at these same exact times.

Symptoms of autism are similar to symptoms of mercury poisoning.

Early, unpublished CDC study finds a tremendous correlation between thimerosal and autism. Here is a link: http://www.safeminds.org/Generation%20Zero%20Syn.pdf - Just so you know, the people at Simpsonwood did not see this study. They saw either the 2nd or 3rd iteration which had already greatly reduced the link that you see here. CDC still refuses to allow third parties to see the raw data as a way to validate their reports.

Biological studies show thimerosal causes autism in mice.

Biological study shows autistic children are deficient in glutathione which would prevent them from detoxing heavy metals.

Biological study showing how mercury impacts methylation and describes how methyl B12 can help autistic children. Lots of parents now reporting that MB12 is helping their children.

Parents reporting improvements (and in some cases complete loss of diagnosis) through the use of the DAN protocol and in particular chelation which rids the body of heavy metals. Lab tests support assertions that the children had toxic levels of heavy metals and were not able to excrete them naturally.

You can post anything you like to your blog but it won't change the facts.


January 29, 2001 THE FOLLOWING OFFER is made to U.S.-licensed medical doctors who routinely administer childhood vaccinations and to pharmaceutical company CEOs worldwide: Jock Doubleday, president of the California nonprofit corporation Natural Woman, Natural Man, Inc., hereby offers $20,000.00 (U.S.) to the first medical doctor or pharmaceutical company CEO who publicly drinks a mixture of standard vaccine additive ingredients in the same amount as a six-year-old child is recommended to receive under the year-2000 guidelines of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The mixture will not contain viruses or bacteria dead or alive, but will contain standard vaccine additive ingredients in their usual forms and proportions. The mixture will include, but will not be limited to: thimerosal (a mercury derivative), ethylene glycol (antifreeze), phenol (a disinfectant dye), benzethonium chloride (a disinfectant), formaldehyde (a preservative and disinfectant), and aluminum.

The mixture will be prepared by Jock Doubleday, three medical professionals that he names, and three medical professionals that the participant names. The mixture will be body weight calibrated.

Because the participant is either a professional caregiver who routinely administers childhood vaccinations, or a pharmaceutical company CEO whose business is, in part, the sale of childhood vaccines, it is understood by all parties that the participant considers all vaccine additive ingredients to be safe and that the participant considers any mixture containing these ingredients to be safe.

[b]Contact Jock Doubleday at jockdoubleday@aol.com.

New Development: A pediatric chiropractor in Hamburg, Germany has recently added his $200,000.00 "S-Series 600" Mercedes (Brabus E V12), including shipping costs to the U.S., to Mr. Doubleday's original $20,000.00 Reward. This Mercedes has been named "The Fastest Four-Door Sedan in the World" by the editors of The Guinness Book of Records.
Tami Giles, Auburn, WA

Orac:

I think “Not a moron” is itself an Oxymoron.

Although he may be right it is Timetoshut (sic) down nthis (sic) ebsite (sic): http://www.campaignfortruth.com/latestnews/krafeldandlanka.htm due to pure FRAUD!

“Critical Thinker”

Perhaps you could make comments re Orac’s blog posts on Orac’s blog?

Re: Also, if you really read the transcript you will see that the results they are discussing is not the same as what was published in Pediatrics. At Simpsonwood, even though most of the autism correlation had already been "hidden" through data manipulation they did find a correlation with other disorders (I'm thinking it was ADHD but it has been awhile since I read it). Anyway, these other correlations somehow disappear by the time the study is published in Pediatrics.

Can you please support these claims with cites?

Re: You mention the Geier's conflict of interest but ignore the huge conflicts of interest on the other side.

No, neither of us did. You didn’t get the point, which was that RFK was using conflict of interest as an argument against people with a supposed link to the vaccine industry, while ignoring the Geiers’ conflict of interest.

Re: Symptoms of autism are similar to symptoms of mercury poisoning.

Not so.

Re: Early, unpublished CDC study finds a tremendous correlation between thimerosal and autism. Here is a link: http://www.safeminds.org/Generation%20Zero%20Syn.pdf - Just so you know, the people at Simpsonwood did not see this study. They saw either the 2nd or 3rd iteration which had already greatly reduced the link that you see here. CDC still refuses to allow third parties to see the raw data as a way to validate their reports.

Kennedy stated that the Simpsonwood meeting (a) agreed that Thimerosal was responsible for a dramatic increase in autism and (b) spent two days discussing ways to cover it up. Are you agreeing with me that that is not what happened and that Kennedy was dishonest?

Re: Biological studies show thimerosal causes autism in mice.

Please cite the study. (This should be good – how do you tell if a mouse is autistic?)

Re: Parents reporting improvements (and in some cases complete loss of diagnosis) through the use of the DAN protocol and in particular chelation which rids the body of heavy metals. Lab tests support assertions that the children had toxic levels of heavy metals and were not able to excrete them naturally.

I’m sorry but that is just an anecdote. Anecdotes are not the way to make progress in developing successful therapies.

Re: You can post anything you like to your blog but it won't change the facts.

Er, quite correct.


"Can you please support these claims with cites?"

If you read the transcript there are lots of references to possible correlations with other neurological disorders. Here's a quote from page 50:

"In conclusion, the screening analysis suggests a possible association between certain neurologic developmental disorders. Namely Tics, attention deficit disorder, speech and language disorders and exposure to mercury from Thimerosal containing vaccines before the age of six months. No such association was found for renal disorders."

_________________________________________________

Re: You mention the Geier's conflict of interest but ignore the huge conflicts of interest on the other side.

"No, neither of us did. You didn’t get the point, which was that RFK was using conflict of interest as an argument against people with a supposed link to the vaccine industry, while ignoring the Geiers’ conflict of interest."

If you want to criticize Kennedy for relying on the Geier's you can do that. But what exactly is his conflict of interest? Whatever conflict of interest you think the Geier's bring to the table pales in comparison to the conflicts of interest Kennedy is referring to. I'll assume you agree with me since you have chosen not to address the conflicts of interest that I commented on earlier.

_______________________________________________

Re: Symptoms of autism are similar to symptoms of mercury poisoning.

"Not so."

That link you provide must be a joke. Are you trying to tell me that speech disorder is not a common symptom of autism? Surely I'm not the only one who has seen this problem in their autistic child. What about poor coordination? That is definitely a common symptom. Here's a better source of information for you on this topic: http://www.generationrescue.org/pdf/bernard.pdf

__________________________________________________

Re: Biological studies show thimerosal causes autism in mice.

"Please cite the study. (This should be good – how do you tell if a mouse is autistic?)"

http://www.generationrescue.org/pdf/hornig.pdf

___________________________________________________

Re: Parents reporting improvements (and in some cases complete loss of diagnosis) through the use of the DAN protocol and in particular chelation which rids the body of heavy metals. Lab tests support assertions that the children had toxic levels of heavy metals and were not able to excrete them naturally.

"I’m sorry but that is just an anecdote. Anecdotes are not the way to make progress in developing successful therapies."

You're right. The CDC should be interested in these anecdotes and they should be studying it. Wouldn't you agree?

___________________________________________________

Re: Early, unpublished CDC study finds a tremendous correlation between thimerosal and autism. Here is a link: http://www.safeminds.org/Generation%20Zero%20Syn.pdf - Just so you know, the people at Simpsonwood did not see this study. They saw either the 2nd or 3rd iteration which had already greatly reduced the link that you see here. CDC still refuses to allow third parties to see the raw data as a way to validate their reports.

"Kennedy stated that the Simpsonwood meeting (a) agreed that Thimerosal was responsible for a dramatic increase in autism and (b) spent two days discussing ways to cover it up. Are you agreeing with me that that is not what happened and that Kennedy was dishonest?"

No, I am not agreeing with you. Did Kennedy write this article in a way that would be sure to attract attention to it? Yes, so perhaps he's guilty of being a good journalist. Of course he focused on the quotes that carry the most weight. But just because the whole transcript doesn't read like you might expect after seeing the quotes doesn't make Kennedy dishonest. This thimerosal mess happened over a long period of time, not just at a 2 day conference.

No where in the transcript do you see that the data being discussed has already been manipulated. But if you look at the SafeMinds doc obtained via FOIA (link is above) you'll see that is exactly what happened. You didn't comment on this either so I'll assume you are as shocked as I was when I first read it.

There are memo's from Merck showing that they knew the amount of mercury in vaccines was dangerous back in the early 90's but did nothing about it.

There are memo's showing that the FDA was "asleep at the switch" for failing to add up the mercury exposure.

I'm still waiting for you to explain why it was ok for the doc at Simpsonwood to not use thimerosal on his grandson based on the data he saw at that meeting while simultaneously voting that he didn't see a problem with thimerosal.

And you still don't address the IOM quotes. I agree that these are serious charges and I'm glad I'm not the one making them. But if those quotes are true then the entire IOM report is garbage.

I could go on but hopefully you're getting the picture. Based on all of the info Kennedy was neither lying nor was he being dishonest. Your arguments against him do not prove your point and you have no argument for most of the points I have raised.

Based on the information you are starting to see, do you agree with the IOM decision in 2004 that thimerosal should no longer be looked at as a potential cause of autism?

Don't you think we should remove thimerosal from vaccines?

Don't you think it's wrong for us to send vaccines to other countries with thimerosal?

The pressure being applied by people like Kennedy seems to have paid off. Senator Santorum announced that there is or will be a senate investigation into this matter. We can only hope that it is more open minded than the one performed by the IOM.

Did you see the recent article on Merck and Vioxx? http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050623/ap_on_bi_ge/vioxx_safety_9

It's obviously not related to thimerosal but hopefully it will be useful to illustrate that it's not so uncommon to coverup adverse effects of drugs.


Orac and Skeptico
I have read the Simpsonwood transcript and the one really telling comment for me was the doctor who said that he was not going to expose his grandson to any Thimerosol containing shots. Here is a man who helps to shape vaccine policy in this country who did not want this for his own grandson but said it was OK for millions of other kids. As parent of an affected child--
I ask the both of you--what am I supposed to think? Obviously, he was so concerned by what he was seeing in this study, he wanted to protect his own family, and
did not take the proper steps in trying to protect other people's families. There is another question that I think that is a very valid one to be asked--If here was a study on mercury in vaccines--why wasn't one expert on mercury asked to participate in the meeting?
Don't you think it would have been a good idea to have an expert on heavy metal toxicology present? The one thing that I keep seeing in this meeting is they keep using the no data excuse. No data on Ethyl Mercury.
What we have here is a substance that is being used in vaccines for years that has zero safety studies. Don't you think that the right thing to do would be to extensively study Thimerosol before exposing the masses
to it? In my opinion, the "experts" should know and understand every single molecule contained in vaccines
BEFORE giving them to children. There is another telling comment from another so-called "expert" in this meeting that you should take note of:
"My mandate as I sit here in this group is to make sure at the end of the day that 100,000,000 are immunized with DTP, Hepatitis B and if possible Hib, this year, next year and for many years to come, and that will have to be with thimerosal-containing vaccines unless a miracle occurs and an alternative is found quickly and is tried and found to be safe."
To me this comment is shocking--in essence he is saying that even if Thimerosol is harmful he is still going to vaccinate anyway.
Let's put aside for a moment whether or not you believe that Thimerosol is the culprit for the neurological problems among children. The thing that I find the most disturbing among these "experts" is their indifference.
To me it appears that they were nitpicking and trying to make the associations go away rather than trying to get to the truth of the matter. I feel that this meeting was an attempt at exonerating mercury in vaccines and not at seeking the truth. In addition,
yes, most of the scientists present gave their views as a 1 or a 2-- but keep in mind that not one scientist
in that room was an expert on heavy metal toxicology.
On the contrary, they all acknowledge how little they really understand about mercury and other heavy metals.
In reality, this was not the proper makeup of scientists
to be presented with this important information and asked as a group to come up with an assessment.
I have to acknowledge that many of us who feel that their child that has been damaged by mercury in vaccines can get very emotional about this issue and attack the ones who disagree. I can only apologize for myself if I appear to get emotional about this but
who can blame me? I will try to share our perspective with you so hopefully you will understand---
My wife is saying to the pediatrician for a year that she feels something is not right with my son--the pediatrician says let's wait till he is 3. When he is 3 she suggests we take him to see a child psychologist.
(Error #1) Any good pediatrician knows that you always listen to the mother. The pediatrician should have been more concerned and right then and there run tests to see if there was a physical problem.
Then we get a referral for a pediatric neurologist.
We get the diagnosis of mild-moderate Autism. The Autism "expert" runs some tests (Fragile-X, etc.) and finds nothing. She does at least test him for lead so she was at least willing to acknowledge a heavy metal as a possible cause. She claims that mercury can't cause Autism because they do not have a higher incidence in Japan and because they eat more fish they should have more cases of Autism if Mercury was the culprit.
(Error #2) This is a supposed "expert" on Autism who is making a scientific argument that is incredibly flawed. In order for her argument to be valid we would have to be eating fish from the same place and also the same types.
I start to do more research on Mercury---
I find out that the EPA has stated that 100's of thousands of babies are born with unsafe levels of mercury. 1 out of 8 women of child bearing age has enough mercury in them that is considered to be unsafe to the babies that they are carrying.
This is a significant piece of information, don't you think?
(Error#3) If the medical establishment knows this why are they not sending out an alert that all women of child bearing age be tested for mercury levels?
It is well established by many studies how neuro-toxic
and immuno-toxic mercury is---
I then find out that vaccines have a mercury preservative in them and children were exposed to levels way above safe levels are considered to be--
(Error#4)Whether you think Thimerosol causes Autism--
let's put that aside--you still have to admit that the CDC and the FDA made a huge error by not adding up the
amount of Thimerosol that babies were being exposed to--
I confront the pediatrician about Thimerosol and she states that it is the kind of Mercury that can be excreted.
(Error#5)A study that just came out on primates funded
by the NIH shows that the group that was exposed to ethylmercury via injection retained twice as much inorganic mercury in the brain as the group given
methylmercury (the kind you get from fish) orally.
I have heard other "experts" claim this and now they
all are wrong. Go to the American Academy of Pediatrics
website--it claims that Thimerosol is washed out of the body in 120 days.
From a political standpoint--I see the Senate majority leader accepting huge campaign contributions from big Pharma and trying to push legislation giving the vaccine manufacturers immunity from this particular issue. I see the president having strong ties to Eli Lilly which everyone knows will be at the centerpiece
of the eventual litigation. The president instructed the
justice department to try to seal the records of these
vaccine injury cases related to the Thimerosol issue. Why? Why would the president be so interested?
The medical community and our government has failed us miserably.
Well, I took my son to a DAN doctor and he was finally tested properly and he shows certain metabolic imbalances and heavy metal toxicity issues( in particular mercury). I then join a support group that
is made up of 1500 people that are doing biomedical interventions in their children and they all seem to come up with the same sort of test results--they have heavy metal issues, intestinal issues, thyroid issues, etc.And they all feel that what they are doing is helping their kids.
My son is now been on a Methyl B-12 shot once a week
and an assortment of vitamins and minerals and he has made tremendous progress--11 mos ago he was considered to be severely delayed and now is mildly delayed and has made up significant ground. We are just starting chelation via TD-DMPS.
The bottom line is that these kids are physically ill--
I have seen and experienced all the mistakes and conflict of interests from the one side that defends Thimerosol and I have seen and experienced the successes
of the side that understands that mercury is the underlying cause of this epidemic. My view is that it is
not just the mercury in vaccines though. It is a combination of environmental sources combined with all
heavy metals in the vaccines. Keep in mind that there is Aluminum in many of the vaccines and experts in heavy metal toxicology know that there is a synergistic effect when combining the two metals which enhances the toxicity. I know that the argument will be that it hasn't been proven but then why doesn't the NIH fund studies addressing these issues?
I wish to also point out that vaccines as a whole
have had insufficient safety studies done. There has never been a study on their long-term effects. Also,
nobody knows how our children are being affected by receiving so many shots and at such early ages.
I don't think it is such a good idea to give them so many shots when they are so vulnerable.
This has never been studied ( or at least anything made public).
I am very concerned that we are trading off protecting our children against disease for chronic long-term illnesses. Take notice of alot of the food packaging in your local supermarket:
most of them mention if they contain wheat, dairy, peanuts, soy, etc. The reason why is that children are having more and more food sensitivities.
Overall, children seem to be sicker than ever.
I think an overall review of the vaccination schedule
and the vaccines themselves need to be much more studied and reviewed by an impartial group made of parent groups, consumer groups, vaccine manufacturers, and government officials. Right now you basically have the vaccine manufacturers in charge of vaccine safety. This does not make sense. You would not want the Auto manufacturers in charge of car safety, would you?
Nor the Airline industry in charge of flight safety--
Many people now are questioning the handling of our vaccine program and it's safety issues. If that is so,
then they must be doing something wrong and it is time for a change.
In addressing the IOM--they completely ignored the overwhelming biological evidence supporting the Autism-Mercury link and just chose to accept epidemiological studies done overseas that really don't have any relevance for us here in the U.S. These countries had entirely different vaccination schedules and children weren't exposed to the amount of mercury our kids were exposed to here.
I say let's finally get everything out into the open-
get the CDC to open up their database ( the fact that they won't makes me suspicious) for everyone to see and let's get a congressional--wide investigation going and finally examine this issue so we can put this
to rest. I think it is obvious that this desparately needs to be done---


“Critical Thinker” (I presume)

Re:In conclusion, the screening analysis suggests a possible association between certain neurologic developmental disorders.

The operative word being ”association”. The transcript makes it clear this means a correlation, but not one that was causative. Your error is in thinking correlation is causation.

_________________________________________________
Re:If you want to criticize Kennedy for relying on the Geier's you can do that. But what exactly is his conflict of interest? Whatever conflict of interest you think the Geier's bring to the table pales in comparison to the conflicts of interest Kennedy is referring to. I'll assume you agree with me since you have chosen not to address the conflicts of interest that I commented on earlier.

You’re still missing the point, which was that RFK was using conflict of interest as an argument against people with a supposed link to the vaccine industry, while ignoring the Geiers’ conflict of interest. The Geiers’ act as highly paid consultants in litigation against vaccine companies – why does that “pale in comparison” to someone else’s “conflict”?

And no I do not agree with you. Conflict of interest doesn’t prove anything. As I have said before, Kennedy is committing ad Hominem – attacking the person and not the actual study. If you want to show there was something wrong with the study you have to actually show there was something wrong with the actual study. Which should be easy if the study was phony – a result of a conflict of interest and not good data – so why can’t you?

_____________________________________________
Re:Are you trying to tell me that speech disorder is not a common symptom of autism? Surely I'm not the only one who has seen this problem in their autistic child. What about poor coordination? That is definitely a common symptom. Here's a better source of information for you on this topic: http://www.generationrescue.org/pdf/bernard.pdf

Difficulty in articulating words, caused by impairment of the muscles used in speech. The symptoms are different.

And why is the Generation Rescue site a better source? Because it agrees with you? Aren’t they just selling chelation?
__________________________________________________
Re:http://www.generationrescue.org/pdf/hornig.pdf

First, this mentions "temporal lobe epilepsy" and Rett syndrome which are not autism. In fact (as I hinted in my question), I think it is unlikely that autism could be diagnosed in mice anyway. It was not in this case.

Secondly, this is an animal study and if it relates to human children or not can only be determined by additional research.

Third, this study has not been replicated, unlike the numerous studies showing no link.

___________________________________________________
Re:You're right. The CDC should be interested in these anecdotes and they should be studying it. Wouldn't you agree?

Sure the can study it. Although all evidence suggests they will be studying the wrong thing. The evidence also suggests chelation doesn’t work.
_____


Re:No, I am not agreeing with you.

OK then please show me in the transcript where it says the Simpsonwood attendees agreed that Thimerosal was responsible for a dramatic increase in autism and where it shows they spent most of the next two days discussing how to cover up the damaging data.

Because that was what Kennedy said. If that is not what happened, Kennedy is a liar.

Re:Did Kennedy write this article in a way that would be sure to attract attention to it? Yes, so perhaps he's guilty of being a good journalist. Of course he focused on the quotes that carry the most weight. But just because the whole transcript doesn't read like you might expect after seeing the quotes doesn't make Kennedy dishonest. This thimerosal mess happened over a long period of time, not just at a 2 day conference.

His article refers to specifically to the Simpsonwood conference, and it was nothing like how Kennedy described it. Come on, this is not “just because the whole transcript doesn't read like you might expect…” – that’s just a straw man. It is NOTHING LIKE what Kennedy said.

You need to read that transcript with a little more intellectual honesty.

Re:No where in the transcript do you see that the data being discussed has already been manipulated.

But if you look at the SafeMinds doc obtained via FOIA (link is above) you'll see that is exactly what happened. You didn't comment on this either so I'll assume you are as shocked as I was when I first read it.

Not really. I would need to see a peer reviewed study not a conclusion from a group with an anti-thimerosal agenda.

Re:I'm still waiting for you to explain why it was ok for the doc at Simpsonwood to not use thimerosal on his grandson based on the data he saw at that meeting while simultaneously voting that he didn't see a problem with thimerosal.

When he was thinking of his grandson he was thinking with his heart / when he was voting he was thinking with his head. What we have here is a classic example of why decisions like this should not be made by people emotionally involved. And that includes parents of autistic infants. Cool heads need to examine the evidence.

Re:And you still don't address the IOM quotes. I agree that these are serious charges and I'm glad I'm not the one making them. But if those quotes are true then the entire IOM report is garbage.

Which IOM quotes? Are you talking about Kennedy’s claim about the IOM? If so, I am waiting for evidence to back it up.

Re:I could go on but hopefully you're getting the picture. Based on all of the info Kennedy was neither lying nor was he being dishonest. Your arguments against him do not prove your point and you have no argument for most of the points I have raised.

Based on the information you are starting to see, do you agree with the IOM decision in 2004 that thimerosal should no longer be looked at as a potential cause of autism?

Don't you think we should remove thimerosal from vaccines?

Don't you think it's wrong for us to send vaccines to other countries with thimerosal?

1)Sorry but whatever the truth about thimerosal, Kennedy was being extremely deceitful. If I was in the “thimerosal causes autism” camp I would be pretty annoyed with him for presenting a case that could be so easily refuted.

2) I have refuted every “point” you have made. (And I have no point except that Kennedy was dishonest.)

3)Based on autism increasing in Denmark, Canada etc I see no reason to think thimerosal causes autism.

4)Probably a good thing to remove it, but not for good scientific reasons.


I see nothing wrong with a doctor saying he would not give a thimerosal-containg vaccine to his kids or grandkids and simultaneously saying thimerosal doesn't cause autism.
After all, ruling out a link between thimerosal and autism is hardly saying it's 100% perfect safe! It just doesn't cause autism. Do you think autism is the only thing that could be wrong with a child? Are you so sure autism IS something wrong with a child?

As for the mouse study ... did you even read it?
One of the results was "Growth delay"! Have you EVER seen someone connecting "growth delay" with autism? I haven't.


And autism doesn't cause speech disorders. There's no similarity. Speech disorders of the type caused by mercury are when you know what you want to say and how to say it, but are phsyically incapable.
Autisics don't have a mechnical problem articulating words, but we may well have a problem selecting them; a different thing altogether.

Oh, and one quite I have to respond to...
There was no autism until Eli Lilly started putting mercury in vaccines.
So why are there published descriptions of autistic behaviour dating back to the 1700s?
How do you explain the "Idiot Savants" who travelled with circuses in the 1800s?
Why was the term first coined in 1911 by Eugen Bleuler?

Did Eli Lilly's vaccines travel in time?

And ... how do you explain the STRENGTHS of autism if you claim it's just mercury poisoning? What causes the somewhat larger brain? What produces the strong memories? How does mercury cause improvements as well as harm, and in general just plain change?

If you're having trouble raising your autistic child, "Critical Thinker", I respectfully submit that you consider that autistic people respond to different kinds of stimuli than non-autistic people, and may not even percieve the signs that you're displeased with any given activity, thus requiring you to treat them *differently* than you would another child.

Skeptico,

Do you really need to ask me which IOM quotes? I'm referring to the ones where Marie McCormick and others state that they will never come down that autism is caused by vaccines. What evidence are you expecting? Hopefully the pending senate investigation will provide the evidence that you seek.

I don't have the energy to continue this debate. You haven't refuted a thing and we'll just have to move on and agree to disagree.

I just found a more complete document by Kennedy that is available on his website. It contains more details with sources for all of the information and additional interviews. If this document doesn't change your mind I suppose nothing will.

http://www.robertfkennedyjr.com/docs/AutismHgPolitics_6_23.pdf

Well it was your claim – if you want to link to the actual quote I’ll comment on it, but on this blog the person making the claim has to back up that claim, so you will have to tell me exactly what quote you’re talking about. Up to you.

Up to you also whether you continue or not, but so far you haven’t made any kind of case. You haven’t shown I was wrong about Kennedy’s dishonesty and you haven’t shown any link of thimerosal to autism.

Re: http://www.robertfkennedyjr.com/docs/AutismHgPolitics_6_23.pdf

You’ve got to be kidding me. Another huge document to read - 66 pages this time - with no explanation from you what it is about. Sorry, a link saying “read this” doesn’t cut it.

Skeptico, Didn't you read the Kennedy article? You even referenced the IOM quotes in your original blog. But if you still don't know the passage I'm referring to here it is:

The CDC "wants us to declare, well, that these things are pretty safe," Dr. Marie McCormick, who chaired the IOM's Immunization Safety Review Committee, told her fellow researchers when they first met in January 2001. "We are not ever going to come down that [autism] is a true side effect" of thimerosal exposure. According to transcripts of the meeting, the committee's chief staffer, Kathleen Stratton, predicted that the IOM would conclude that the evidence was "inadequate to accept or reject a causal relation" between thimerosal and autism. That, she added, was the result "Walt wants" -- a reference to Dr. Walter Orenstein, director of the National Immunization Program for the CDC.

For those who had devoted their lives to promoting vaccination, the revelations about thimerosal threatened to undermine everything they had worked for. "We've got a dragon by the tail here," said Dr. Michael Kaback, another committee member. "The more negative that [our] presentation is, the less likely people are to use vaccination, immunization -- and we know what the results of that will be. We are kind of caught in a trap. How we work our way out of the trap, I think is the charge."

The other Kennedy link is similar to his Rolling Stone article with more details and references. Among other things, it accurately refutes the Denmark numbers you keep citing. Apparently, in a recent court case the Denmark study was acknowledged as being trash. Interviews with people like Kathleen Stratton in this paper make an even stronger case. But you read it for yourself and form your own opinion.

That was just Kennedy quoting an IOM spokesperson. Since I don’t have a link to the original quote in full context, Kennedy’s quoting it is worthless, considering his proven dishonesty and quote-mining from the Simpsonwood transcript, and so I feel no need whatsoever to respond to it. In my post I did say “I am not prepared to take (it) on Kennedy’s say-so (especially considering the dishonesty in the bits of his article I have been able to check), and so I have already answered that point.

I thought you were referring to something new.

The link was more of the same old same old. And are you telling me it explains how autism rates in Denmark continue to rise in the absence of thimerosal? Please explain.

From DavidT:
" We are just starting chelation via TD-DMPS."

So you have rejected the more than a dozen studies from at least four countries that autism is not caused by vaccines (plus the over 1000 studies on autism and genetics, I used www.pubmed.gov with "genetics autism" in the search field)... and instead are BUYING and using a treatment that has not been checked, studied, peer reviewed or even shown to work.... except by ONE guy who also claims to have a cure for cancer and aging.

Check it out... the Buttar Cream may be versatile, but that is not the only thing he sells!:
http://www.kevinleitch.co.uk/wp/index.php?p=234

And to think all I did was pay for speech therapy... I also spent some time trying to get state laws changed so that insurance companies would pay for kid neurodevelopmental therapy past a certain age and for more than a few times a year (my son had speech therapy for several years... and it actually worked!).

Skeptico, I think you ought to be familiar with the body of evidence Kennedy is referring to BEFORE you start criticizing him. Clearly you have not read Evidence of Harm. If you had, you would already know why the Danish numbers are untrue. And you seem uninterested in reading Kennedy's more detailed report.

Those IOM quotes are not simply Kennedy quoting some low level IOM spokesperson. Marie McCormick was the Chair of the Immunization Review Committee. Dr. Kathleen Stratton, was a member of IOM staff and study director of the Immunization Safety
Review Committee.

Regarding Denmark, here is the text from Kennedy's detailed paper that you don't want to look at. There is even more information in the paper b/c it includes references and quotes to further back up these statements.

Denmark was an ideal population for the CDC’s purposes. First, the Danes used less than half the dose of thimerosal on their children, so the adverse impacts were less pronounced (Denmark experienced 1/70th of the U.S. autism rates). “It’s as if a researcher trying to study the involvement of mosquitos on malaria conducted his research in Minnesota instead of Panama,” Dr. Boyd Haley told me in disgust. Secondly, an anomaly in Danish statistics collection created a deceptive blip that was of great advantage to CDC in its campaign to deceive the American public.

In 1992 Denmark banned thimerosal. Prior to that date, Danish public health authorities only counted autism in patients that had been hospitalized due to the illness—a small fraction (16% to 25%) of the total. In 1995, the national registry began registering all autistics—including outpatients—quadrupling the national count. At the same time, Denmark began using a far more
inclusive definition of autism and dramatically expanded treatment opportunities for autistics,
further increasing the number of reported cases. The raw data therefore made it appear that removing thimerosal actually increased the rates of autism!

Stehr-Green took advantage of the autism spike that resulted from Denmark’s skewed data gathering methodologies to argue that autism rates in Denmark, when thimerosal was being used, were exceedingly low and then began to rise following thimerosal’s removal.

KM Madsen, the author of the most intellectually honest of the three Danish studies, grudgingly acknowledges that several external events “may” have spuriously increased the apparent number of autism cases after thimerosal was removed from vaccines and concedes that “[o]ur data cannot, of course, exclude the possibility that thimerosal at doses larger than used in Denmark may lead to neurodevelopmental damage.”

The Swedish portion of the study by Stehr-Green had many of the same limitations. The authors
only collected data on children hospitalized for autism, no outpatient data was ever included.
Moreover, Swedish children received only one-third the dose of that in the United States.

During the only federal trial of an autism case, Easter v. Aventis, et al, in the Texas Federal
District Court, the plaintiff’s attorney Dana Fox got the pharmaceutical industry’s own expert
witness to concede that the Danish studies were fatally flawed. Dr. Philip Wang acknowledged that the “dramatic” rise in autism reported in Sweden and Denmark after thimerosal was removed from vaccines “most likely reflect[ed] changes in diagnostic practices and the availability of services for autism.” That admission pulled the rug from beneath IOM’s
studies, breaking the slender reeds upon which the panel principally based its 2004 pronouncement about thimerosal’s safety.


When I spoke to the IOM panel chair Marie McCormick she seemed to still be unaware of this mortal defect in the European study methodologies. “They stopped thimerosal,” she insisted, referring to the Scandinavian experience, “and the incidence of autism continued to increase.”

When I next asked her if the Danish studies lacked relevancy since they examined thimerosal
doses that were less than half those given American kids, she dodged the question by arguing
that children examined in the U.K. study had doses comparable to those received by American
children. This is flat-out untrue. The children who were subjects of the U.K. study (another
ginned-up study done at the prompting of and in cahoots with the CDC), received 75 micrograms of thimerosal during their first 6 months compared to 187.5 micrograms given to U.S. kids during the same period.113 Furthermore, American children got a giant dose of 62.5 micrograms on a single day, whereas the maximum one-day dose for British kids was 25
micrograms. Dr. Neal Halsey, Director, Institute of Vaccine Safety at Johns Hopkins University
and Chairman of the Committee on Infectious Diseases of the American Academy of Pediatrics
told me that it was this giant so-called “bolus dose” that most shocked and frightened him due to
its potential to damage a child’s brain.

When I asked Kathleen Stratton how the committee could have acted on European studies that were so badly flawed and ignored the mountains of solid clinical and biological data she told me, “The committee didn’t think they were badly flawed.”

So, if the CDC reccomends a study, it's automatically bad?

GOOD TO KNOW!

Oh, and the UK hasn't been increasing their doses and doesn't have the huge dose you claim is responsible for causing autism?


... so why are their rates going up similarly to that of the USA?

Re: Those IOM quotes are not simply Kennedy quoting some low level IOM spokesperson.

I did not say that Kennedy was quoting some low level IOM spokesperson, so that was a bit of a straw man. My objection was that I have to rely on Kennedy quoting the person honestly and in context – two assumptions we clearly cannot make since we know for a fact he lies, quote-mines and quotes out of context. So these quotes you say were made, are unreliable.

These two quotes of yours literally made me LOL.

There was this: At the same time, Denmark began using a far more inclusive definition of autism and dramatically expanded treatment opportunities for autistics, further increasing the number of reported cases.

And this: Dr. Philip Wang acknowledged that the “dramatic” rise in autism reported in Sweden and Denmark after thimerosal was removed from vaccines “most likely reflect[ed] changes in diagnostic practices and the availability of services for autism.

You’re saying the Danish increases in autism don’t count because of diagnostic changes and increased availability of services. Do you have no sense of irony? These are the exact same reasons the skeptics give for autism rising in the US – but the believers in this case don’t accept this. Oh no, that’s not the reason HERE. Kennedy actually says in his article:

They argue that the increase is a result of better diagnosis -- a theory that seems questionable at best

Well duh! OF COURSE the increase in autism in Denmark (the UK, Canada etc) is due to better diagnosis – THAT IS THE POINT.

So tell me, why shouldn’t it be the reason for “increased autism” in the US?

Skeptico,

Is that the best you have? I can't find the complete IOM text otherwise I would forward it to you (although you probably wouldn't bother to read it based on your track record). If you poke around I'm sure you'll find it. If someone reading this has the document please forward it to Skeptico. Of course I can't think of any way you could possibly defend those quotes but I'm sure you'll come up with something considering your "thinking with your heart" and "thinking with your head" excuse for Dr. Johnston.

Regarding Denmark.... Like before, you have failed to read ALL of the information I am spoon feeding you. Did you not notice the part about Denmark switching from counting autistic children diagnosed ONLY as inpatients to then including outpatients? This is much different than widening the diagnosis parameters. Here is a quote from Evidence of Harm (pg 272) which you have obviously not read.

"The Danish results were riddled with even more problems than the Swedish ones, however. Even the authors admitted that they "may have spuriously increased the apparent number of autism cases." As in Sweden, they had counted only inpatient cases, at least from 1983 to 1994. Then in 1995, for reasons that went unexplained, the researchers began including outpatient cases as well. In that same year, the total number of children reported with autism more than doubled over the year before: from about 40 cases in 1994 to 100 cases in 1995.

"Changes over time in the rates of diagnosis of autism-like disorders in inpatient versus outpatient settings may have affected the ascertainment of cases," the authors said, in what the Mercury Moms thought was the understatement of hte year.

A second flaw was that prior to 1992, the data did not include cases diagnosed in a busy clinic in Copenhagen, where 20% of all Danish cases were diagnosed. By adding in these previously excluded cases, the authors found a spike in rates in 1992, the same year that mercury was removed from vaccines.

A third change in methodology occurred midway through the study. In 1993, Denmark had updated its psychiatric diagnostic codes and adopted new diagnoses for autism-related disorders. Government workers conducted training seminars with clinicians in order to promote the new coding system.

There's much more info in the book on this topic including the fact that the Danish incidence numbers were MUCH lower than the US numbers both before and after thimerosal was removed from vaccines. Their vaccine schedule is very different than ours.

Perhaps you should do some reading this weekend or give up writing blogs about topics you clearly are not up to speed on.

Critical Thinker (sic):

Re: I can't find the complete IOM text otherwise I would forward it to you (although you probably wouldn't bother to read it based on your track record)

Based on my track record? LMAO – I read the full 286 page transcript remember, that’s how I know Kennedy is a liar – a fact you continually selectively forget. But then it is clear you only selectively recall things that support your point of view, such as the flawed “Evidence of Harm” book that you think is so good. And no, I have not read that book – real scientists write in peer reviewed journals not vanity books.

FYI, here is a critical">http://www.spiked-online.com/articles/0000000CAB30.htm">critical review of that book:

The so-called 'epidemic of autism', which some parents blame on vaccines, is better explained by the increased recognition of the condition among both parents and professionals and by the expansion of diagnostic categories. Though campaigners claim that the symptoms of mercury toxicity are similar to those of autism, on closer inspection, they are quite distinct. Mercury poisoning typically causes an unsteady gait and slurred speech, visual disturbances and numbness in fingers and toes. None of these features is characteristic of autism.

(Snip)

Kirby's account reveals the reliance of the anti-mercury campaign on some research that appears to be of poor quality and some that is simply junk science (4). It is striking that research carried out with the support of parent campaigners invariably provides further confirmation of the campaigners' claims. Some of these researchers make extravagant claims for the explanatory power of their theories - and for the therapeutic value of interventions based on them.

Kirby reproduces campaigners' allegations against former CDC staffer Dr Thomas Verstraeten, based on minutes of an internal discussion of preliminary results of his study of thimerosal, held at Simpsonwood in Georgia in June 2000. Yet Verstraeten's response (also reproduced by Kirby) to allegations that the data in his final report had been doctored to conceal an association between thimerosal and autism seems entirely convincing.

As for the IOM quotes you think mean so much – I’ll say it one more time, this is a critical thinking blog, which means that I will insist the person making the claim backs up the claim. It was Kennedy’s quote and yet he didn’t source it. It isn’t my job to find the original quote and check its context, it is Kennedy’s (or yours if you’re going to continue to use it) to justify it by citing the full original quote. So back up your claim or go away.

Perhaps you should do some reading this weekend or give up writing comments to blogs about topics you clearly are not up to speed on.


"But then it is clear you only selectively recall things that support your point of view, such as the flawed “Evidence of Harm” book that you think is so good. And no, I have not read that book"

Interesting how you have reached the conclusion that Evidence of Harm is flawed without ever having read it.

Here is a quote taken from the critical review of EOH that you so nicely provided for me

"It is true that mercury is potentially toxic to the developing infant brain and that, as babies were given more vaccines, the total dose of mercury received increased (though it remained at trace level..."

Although it remained at trace level! How in the world can anyone make a ridiculous claim such as that? Are you under the same false impression? I thought the FDA were the only ones incapable of performing 9th grade arithmetic. Apparently your source Dr Michael Fitzpatrick is also mathematically challenged.

Here's another quote:

"Mercury poisoning typically causes an unsteady gait and slurred speech, visual disturbances and numbness in fingers and toes. None of these features is characteristic of autism."

So that's all mercury poisoning is? Just those handful of symptoms?

Here are a couple of others.

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002476.htm

Expectations (prognosis)

Severity of symptoms and long-term effects are dependent on the amount of exposure and the time to treatment. It is important to be evaluated by a
physician for any suspected mercury exposure. Mercury causes neurologic effects, including irritability, developmental delay, or psychosis.

My son has developmental delays & is EXTREMELY irritable.

Once again, I'll refer you to this study http://www.generationrescue.org/pdf/bernard.pdf and no, Generation Rescue does NOT sell chelation. It is a not for profit organization existing solely to provide advice to parents with autistic children and to raise awareness.

I'm sure the IOM paper will surface soon enough.

Any luck finding a study showing thimerosal to be safe?

Not reading the first dataset by the CDC b/c it hasn't been peer reviewed is a weak answer. The link is provided above by SafeMinds.

I suppose you really didn't know about the Denmark study. Those flawed studies were relied on heavily by the IOM.

I'm sure the IOM paper will surface soon enough.

So you admit you quoted it without having seen the original? That’s not really “Critical Thinking” is it?

Anyway, perhaps you’d like to see what the IOM really have to say about Kennedy’s quote mining.

Any luck finding a study showing thimerosal to be safe?

Why should I have to find such a study? I’m not the one making claims here, except the claim that Kennedy was extremely dishonest in his article. And I have shown that beyond much doubt.

Not reading the first dataset by the CDC b/c it hasn't been peer reviewed is a weak answer. The link is provided above by SafeMinds.

No, quoting a non-peer reviewed document from a strong “believer” site is weak. Rejecting peer reviewed studies in favor of a “believer” book is weak.

I suppose you really didn't know about the Denmark study. Those flawed studies were relied on heavily by the IOM.

You haven’t shown they are flawed, just that a book you like confirms your pre-conceived opinions.

Some more peer reviewed studies:

USA
USA
USA
Canada
UK
Australia
Denmark

You’re arguing with peer reviewed studies, replicated around the world. Virtually all the believer information is in books and websites while the skeptical stuff is in medical journals? Doesn’t that make you think? Because it should.

NOTICE

This post is closed for comments.

If you want to comment then please do so on this new “thimerosal update” post. I have posted some new information there relevant to comments that have been made here.

Also please read Lies, damn lies, and quote mining - where I get hold of the actual article containing the actual quotes that Kennedy used, and that “Critical Thinker” thinks are so damning – and I find (surprise) that Kennedy takes the quotes completely out of context to make them mean the exact opposite of what they really mean. It’s a long post but, I think, worth it.

The comments to this entry are closed.

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