Is it just me, or are medical propaganda films becoming the preferred media for “brave maverick doctors, dubious doctors, and quacks to promote their wares? I just pointed out how everybody’s favorite “brave maverick doctor,” he of the therapy for cancer for which there is no compelling evidence but that he keeps administering anyway, using the clinical trial process to avoid pesky rules about administering unapproved drugs and that is nothing more at its core than an orphan drug without compelling evidence for efficacy and of the “personalized gene-targeted therapy for dummies” based on nothing but arrogance of ignorance regarding genomic medicine, is going to be lionized again in a sequel to a previous movie that lionized him. (Obviously, I’m referring to Stanislaw Burzynski.) The movie, as I’ve pointed out before, was made by a filmmaker whose business is to make promotional videos for corporate clients. Before that there was the antivaccine propaganda piece known as The Greater Good, in which vaccines were portrayed as a cause of autism, sudden infant death syndrome, and a variety of other diseases. This was a movie produced by a homeopath named Leslie Manookian, who is also apparently tight with all-purpose quack (in my opinion) Dr. Julian Whitaker, who also happens to be tight with Stanislaw Burzynski and will be appearing in the latest Burzynski medical propaganda film. Other recent movies of this ilk include Simply Raw, touting raw vegan diets as a cure for, well, almost everything; The Beautiful Truth, a documentary promoting the quackery known as the Gerson protocol; and at least a couple of films I haven’t reviewed (but might), such as Cut, Poison, Burn, a pro-cancer quackery film.
Sadly, it looks as though I’ll soon have to add another quack movie to the list. This time around it’s another antivaccine movie, Canary Kids: A Film for Our Children, which is being touted by the antivaccine quackery propagandists at the antivaccine crank blog Age of Autism. They even have a trailer:
The makers of this film sure aren’t shy about promoting it—or making hyperbolic claims for it:
We live in a media age. It is time for a big media solution. It is time for a ground-breaking, paradigm-shifting film, made by an award-winning director, that will raise awareness in a meaningful and powerful way. A film that connects the dots for people. A film that shows how all children in this country are a part of the autism epidemic. A film that can be seen in theaters across the country.
I present to you, Canary Kids: A Film For Our Children. This is a documentary film that is being funded by us, the parents, the scientists, the writers, the advocates, the people who “get it,” who want everyone else to “get it” too. But we need your help.
I’m beginning to think that it’s a general rule among cranks, “brave maverick doctors,” and quacks that, if you can’t convince scientists and physicians based on high quality scientific and clinical trial evidence, then make a movie! Maybe I’ll call that Orac’s Law. Oh, wait. I’ve called too many other postulates “Orac’s Law.” Maybe I should publish a list of them, along with corollaries, kind of like the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition. Maybe I could call them “Orac’s Rules of Woo.”
My egomaniacal desire for laws and postulates named after me that can be quoted in skeptical wikis aside, this movie looks bad. Real bad. As bad as the latest Burzynski hagiography that’s going to be released direct to DVD in less than a week and a half. It’s hard to tell, because obviously the Canary movie isn’t done yet, and the purpose of this announcement is to hit up the faithful for money. Using a survey that found that people who watched Food, Inc. actually changed their behavior with respect to the sorts of food they purchased, the makers of this new antivaccine movie state explicitly what their goals are for this movie. They are, quite simply, to do grave damage to public health by undermining confidence in the vaccine program and to promote the quackiest of quackery to be used to “recover” autistic children:
So imagine the statistics coming out upon the release of Canary Kids:
People who watched Canary Kids were more likely to:
- refuse vaccination and/or question their pediatricians about the safety and efficacy of vaccines
- refuse antibiotics for their children’s ear infections or viral sore throats
- eat organic whole foods
- try homeopathy before pharmaceutical medications
- replace toxic cleaning and personal care products with safe, green alternatives
- write their Congressmen about toxic exposures in their communities
Now, that is the kind of change that can stop a health epidemic in its tracks.
No, that’s the kind of change that can cause a health epidemic by decreasing the number of children protected against vaccine-preventable diseases, thus degrading herd immunity and guaranteeing that the incidence of serious childhood illnesses will increase manyfold. It’s also the sort of change that could guarantee that children will die of diseases they don’t have to die from as parents choose quackery like homeopathy before they choose real medications.
This is the sort of change we don’t need.
Fortunately, I doubt that a movie that will obviously not be as slick as Food, Inc will be as influential. The message is also likely to be so heavy-handed that people will likely tune it out as an advertisement, which is what it will be, more or less, specifically an advertisement for autism biomed quackery. It is, however, interesting to me primarily because apparently the movie is going to codify the sorts of things that antivaccinationists have been saying, in which vaccines apparently cause pretty much every chronic disease known to children because, well, vaccines are evil in their eyes. Certainly no science links vaccines with these problems, but science was never the strong suit of people like the makers of this film.
In fact, this film will create a diagnosis that will boil down to “vaccines cause every chronic health problem children experience.” You think I’m joking. Take a look. The name of the condition, according to the film, is “almost autism.” What constitutes “almost autism”? Almost everything. Basically, the filmmakers are trying to suck all parents into believing that their children are part of the “autism epidemic” (that almost certainly is nothing of the sort), whether their children have autism or not. In service of this “rebranding,” they redefine GI problems, asthma, pretty much any behavioral problem, or any chronic problem as “not autism”; i.e., caused by the same things they believe to be causes of autism, including (of course) above all vaccines. The filmmakers are very blatant about admitting that their movie’s message is all about marketing:
What is going to make someone come out to see Canary Kids? Canary Kids is not just about autism. For too long, people not directly affected by autism have looked the other way, because they can’t relate to autism. They don’t know what it is, they don’t see how it impacts them. They may not come out to see a film about autism, but they will come out to see a film about their kids.
Most people don’t understand that the asthma epidemic is directly related to the autism epidemic or that the obesity epidemic is related to the autism epidemic. They don’t yet see that the same environmental factors (pharmaceuticals, vaccines, toxins, diet, etc.) that cause symptoms of autism in one child are the very same environmental factors that cause symptoms of asthma in another.
I dont’ know if this tactic is evidence that these people are true believers or truly cynical. It’s probably both, although I don’t know which predominates. Basically, because their message isn’t resonating very much outside of their little collective of vaccine-autism true believers, they’ve decided that the way to reach out is to try to convince parents whose children have any sort of health issue at all that the evil vaccines done it and that their children have “almost autism.” In this, they seem to be appearing to redefine autism to the point of their definition being no definition at all other than any condition their fevered imaginations come to view as being caused by vaccines, regardless of how they do it.
But who is this group that is making this movie? We learn that it’s a nonprofit organization called Epidemic Answers, which until now I had never heard of before. It was formed by a woman named Beth Lambert, whom I had also never heard of before, which just goes to show that, no matter how much I think I know the players in the antivaccine movement, I never quite do. There’s always someone out there attacking vaccines or forming some organization or nother whom I don’t hear about until for some reason he or she pops up on my radar. Then, when that happens, I try to find out who the person is and what she stands for.
In the case of Lambert, it’s easy. She bills herself as a former healthcare consultant (whatever that means) and teacher. It’s pretty clear that she has no formal medical training, because if she did she would certainly advertise that on her book (yes, she’s written a book), A Compromised Generation: The Epidemic of Chronic Illness in America’s Children. She wrote it with a dietitian named Vicki Kobliner who runs a company, Holcare Nutrition, that touts “gluten-free, dairy free, low allergen, GFCF, SCD, GAPS, FODMAPS, and other appropriate diets” to treat a whole host of conditions. She’s also into “functional” medicine:
Through established scientific research and laboratory testing, functional medicine recognizes that ADHD is associated with imbalances in the levels of micronutrients (or vitamins and minerals used by the body for basic functions), neurotransmitters (necessary brain chemicals), and excesses of heavy metals in the body, among other dysregulated processes. Through diagnostic laboratory testing, clinicians can evaluate a particular patient’s imbalances and look for what might have contributed to these imbalances. For instance, deficiencies in micronutrients in the body (such as zinc, selenium, magnesium) can be explained by looking at the diet and how effectively or ineffectively the body assimilates these nutrients into the gastrointestinal tract.
Sadly, functional medicine is pure pseudoscience, as Wally Sampson has explained. It postulates “imbalances” in hormones and neurotransmitters, oxidation-reduction, detoxification and biotransformation, immune function, inflammation, and cell structure. It’s all so vague that these “imbalances” could mean almost anything, and when practitioners of “functional medicine” refer to them they usually do. Perhaps the most famous practitioner of “functional medicine” is Mark Hyman, known for creating “Ultrawellness,” the very name of which should tell you pretty much all you need to know about functional medicine. Yes, it’s quackery, full of supplements, dietary manipulations, and “detoxification.” “Imbalances” must be measured through a battery of lab tests and corrected with whatever woo functional medicine practitioners can dream up.
So we know where Lambert and Kobliner are coming from, and it is not from anything resembling a science-based perspective. Not surprisingly, she believes that in addition to lifestyle and diet, vaccines and “toxins” from the environment are the root cause of autism and pretty much every other chronic conditions children can develop.
Interestingly, Lambert’s consulting work was done for pharmaceutical companies and device manufacturers, as we learn in this interview:
Oh, dear. Our evil Pharmacon Overlord Lord Draconis Zeneca will be displeased. A traitor! Joking aside (or is it?), she describes having a child with “almost autism,” who had sensory, skin, allergies, and behavioral issues. The funny thing is, apparently her pediatrician didn’t agree that the child had all these problems, because Lambert complains that every time she took her child to the pediatrician he would tell her that her child was fine and developing on-target. So Lambert went doctor shopping and found a “Defeat Autism Now!” (DAN!) doctor. As many readers know, DAN! was a name for a set of “autism biomed” quackery, and DAN! doctors were doctors who practice such quackery. They were listed on the registry of the antivaccine autism biomed group “Autism Research Institute,” but the DAN! classification was dropped after 2011, and the ARI no longer maintains a list of DAN! doctors.
And guess what? The DAN! doctor found stuff wrong with her child—a lot of stuff! (Funny how that works, isn’t it?) Completely unsurprisingly, the problems he found were the same as those that DAN! doctors always seem to find in autistic children! Surprise, surprise! Lambert also apparently used an “integrative” physician and dietician to do “comprehensive gut healing protocols,” whatever that means. She also worked with a homotoxicologist and a naturopath. In other words, she assembled a team of quacks and entrusted them with the care of herself and her children. I realize I’ve written a lot about naturopathy, which is a cornucopia of just about every form of quackery known to humans, but what is homotoxicology? It turns out that it’s a quack discipline concocted by a homeopath, Hans-Heinrich Reckeweg, who believed that disease was the body’s attempt to dispel “toxins” and that homeopathic remedies can be used to correct this.
So what is this movie about? This:
The Canary Kids Film Project will take 7 children with a diagnosis of autism, ADHD, asthma, chronic Lyme or some other amalgamation of chronic (environmentally-derived) symptoms and provide them with free healing and recovery services for the period of 18 months.
The film will document their recovery journey while simultaneously providing an exposé on the factors that contributed to their conditions in the first place. Most importantly, the film will connect the dots for people so that they understand that we are all a part of the autism epidemic: Asthma, ADHD, allergies, Lyme, OCD, SPD, LDs, diabetes, obesity, Crohn’s, colitis, rare autoimmune conditions . . . we are all affected.
So basically, Lambert will take seven children with “with a diagnosis of autism, ADHD, asthma, chronic Lyme or some other amalgamation of chronic (environmentally-derived) symptoms” and subject them to the the full Monty of autism biomed quackery, including “detoxification” and “supplementation” treatment in order to “heal” them. It is indeed pure propaganda, and I do appreciate that the commenters at the antivaccine crank blog Age of Autism recognize it as such, for instance Jilly Ann Beret:
…we wont get anywhere until we have won the PROPAGANDA WAR . We have got to get it accepted as fact , that vaccinations are causing a health holocaust.
And that means reaching the masses with our message over and over again . We have to counter the blatant lies being spread by Governments and PharmaHarma and the media .
Only at the point do I expect will we get the full scientific resources we require to cure our children (with full Govt funding). I know everyone will ask what do we do until then , well there are plenty of people doing their very best trying to find the best protocol to fix the issue . And children are being recovered – much to the embarassment of the Govts and PharmaHarma .
To most of us here on AoA , its simply preposterous that anything else causes autism except vaccines . And the CDC and the Govts and the Pharma are fully aware of that fact too – they already know Vaccines cause Autism – and that vaccines cause much more besides – ADHD , sterility , diabetes just for starters.
Propaganda for antivaccine views and autism biomed quackery aside, I can’t help but wonder if, in fact, the motivation to produce this film is more than just a desire to sell the world on the idea that vaccines cause autism and all sorts of other health problems (almost autism). It would appear to me that the motivation is primarily to sell autism quackery to a broader audience by making a movie that will be in essence a series of testimonials. Does anyone believe that all seven of these children won’t improve? Of course they will, because the outcome is preordained and there wouldn’t be a movie if they didn’t all (or at least five or six of them) appear to make considerable progress. What a bargain for the mere price of $250,000, which is what Lambert is asking for! Sadly, I have little doubt she’ll get it and ultimately make this movie. Fortunately, on the surface it looks as though it will be so blatant that most people outside the autism biomed bubble will recognize it for the propaganda that it will be.
157 replies on ““Almost autism”: A new diagnosis created by antivaccinationists”
Why did she not believe him?
Says it all about AoA, doesn’t it?
these people are true believers or truly cynical.
I’m just seeing a completely cynical, completely opportunistic attempt to cash in on the hard work put in by the Canary Party.
When Denice Walter posted a comment about ‘Canary Kids’ the other day, I only just averted a cranial implosion. I have asthma (among other things) and my partner has Crohns. We’ve both had catastrophic events (although her haemorrhaging through her clothes packed a visual punch that made my frequent cyanosis look really dull) that were only turned around via the “evil” of pharmaceuticals.
Given this, the thought of kids being removed from therapeutic regimens makes me feel ill. Why don’t these muppets realise that although the only reason that there are more children and adults with chronic diseases is ‘Big Pharma’, it’s because drugs keep them alive. Bronchospasm, hypoglycaemia, and other crises are no longer necessarily fatal events. Children not dying in infancy, from their first asthma attack/hypo/seizure, is an amazing sign of human progress.
My mother’s only in her fifties, and in very early childhood she watched her best friend die in front of her. A sudden and severe asthma attack turned a sunny day playing outside into any parent’s nightmare. It scarred my mother forever, so much so that my only memory of my first attack during lunch one Sunday, when I was five, is a silent image of her screaming face.
I just hope that none of the ‘Canary Kids’ are permanently maimed or killed. AFAIK there is no Salbutamol tree, no reiki fix for ketoacidosis, no ‘mesalazine meridian’ for acupuncturists to tit about with.
Rage. I has it.
I cynically wonder if they will hedge their bets and follow more than 7 children, with the intention of only showing the 7 that appear to have done the best. Also, without a control group of children with similar conditions who remain under conventional medical care, the process is meaningless. Children develop over 18 months, some more than others, and none of these conditions are static.
This raises a question which has bothered me for a while about the Autism-makes-my-child-worthless tendency among the anti-vaxers. What sort of child would be good enough for them? Because what I get from “I took my child to the pediatrician who said it was perfectly fine” is “I perceive my child as having defects which make them inadequate for my needs, and I’m looking for experts to validate that perception and give me something to blame.”
Homosexuality toxic? Surely you jest! I cannot believe there’s an epidemic under every bed, around every corner, in every vaccine. These people are perpetrating fraud if they try to claim their children are afflicted with all of these random illnesses, and the quacktitioners that claim to diagnose same are abetting them. There’s a Munchhauseorderby proxy epidemic, and this tripe spreads that disease.
Sorry I’m cranky. I had a good physical therapy session last night. My primary care physician actually suggested I see a chiropractor. I told her no, I wouldn’t let a chiropractor touch me anywhere above the lumbar spine; they treat symptoms and don’t fix problems, I want to go to a PT for my chronic neck/shoulder problems. She gladly wrote the orders.
“refuse antibiotics for their children’s ear infections”
I had an ear infection late last year. The pain developed in the morning, by late afternoon I was on antibiotics, and in a couple of days I was fine (I finished the antibiotics, of course). I can imagine the suffering some poor child would experience if he had a similar ear infection and his parents refused antibiotics and played around with homeopathy while the pressure on the eardrum built, and built …
And are these woo-pedlers aware of the fact that MMS, what some of them might give as a remedy for almost everything, isn’t all that natural?
“Is it just me, or are medical propaganda films becoming the preferred media for “brave maverick doctors, dubious doctors, and quacks to promote their wares?”
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.
“Now on DVD*, a paradigm-busting, reality-shifting film that blows the covers off the brain-dead altie movement, ‘Orac’s Rules of Woo’. This film will have you laughing, crying, and wiping coffee-spew off your computer keyboard.
From Lord Draconis Zeneca Productions, which also brought you “Patricia’s Powerful Prozac” and “Hot Lizard Porn of 2012”.
*or at least YouTube.
@Dangerous Bacon: where do I invest in this production?
In the 11 years I’ve been working in special education, the criteria for autism seem to have expanded so far that if we add ‘almost autism’ into the mix I guess we can just serve all children under that label.
@DB – We need a film.
Is this a form of Munchhauns by proxy, as badpoet has suggested?
Munchhausen’s. Stupid phone.
@Shay – it certainly could be. It could be a symptom of the parents being able to ignore the natural well-being (or “healthiness”) of the child, because of some supposed flaw that they need to fix – subjecting the child to all sorts of abusive quackery so they can get back their “perfect” child.
It is horrible to even imagine the kinds of stuff these kids are forced to go through, all on their parents’ desire to fix their kids.
@DB – I too would like to invest in “Orac’s Rules of Woo.” Where’s the Paypal button??
This whole concept of “almost autism” scares me for the reasons mentioned. It also strikes me as hypocritical for some: These are probably the sorts of people who complain about ADD/ADHD medication as “standardizing” children (because those medications come from Big Pharma) but when they try to “cure” their autistic kids with harmful quackery, it’s to reclaim their “real” child and get rid of the “empty shell.” Now they have an excuse to use quackery on any child that doesn’t live up to their demands of perfection.
The prospect of this feeding Munchhausen’s syndrome makes it even worse.
@Julian Frost and SarahW – I also wondered what sort of parent leaves a pediatrician’s office after repeatedly being told their child is fine and starts shopping for a doctor who says the child is sick and needs all sorts of questionable (and pricey, I’m sure) “therapies.”
Shay: you’re lucky you didn’t end up with Leprachauns by proxy!
Right, *la nouvelle vague* in woo** is film for web and/or theatrical release.
Creating propaganda on film is easier than merely utilising print – books and blogs- as it has infinite possibilies for histrionics and prevarication.
I have a cousin whose metier involves editing out reality in projects by major film directors: fortunately, his work involves fictional screenplays and largely concerns visual effects. Woo-meisters have a grander plan in mind.
Anti-vax groups are adopting a new expansive world view to promulgate because, perhaps, they realise that they have an extremely limited audience: parents who have both autistic children and an unhinged grasp on reality.
The Canary Party believes that chronic illness is the product of modern living which includes vaccines, pharmaceuticals, modern farming methods and living in the post- industrial era generally.
So the new formula – replacing ‘ vaccines cause autism’- becomes ‘vaccines plus modern living causes autism and sundry ills’. The Canaries’ original manifesto details exactly which chronic problems ( see Canary Party.org). Thus, they’re preaching to a much larger potential audience- the same one to which alt med does. Similarly, TMR takes a grander view of illness and its causes- their protocols for recovering from autism involve more than just avoiding vaccination.
Over the past 10 years or so, I’ve noticed a phenomenon that has emerged from the deepest, filthiest swamp of woo-infested miasmal proliferation: films as an introduction to an alt med product line. Gary Null has “directed, written and produced over 100 award-winning documentaries…. related to health and wellness, self-empowerment, social justice and the environment” including such gems as ” Death by Medicine”, “Aids, Inc” and “Vaccine Nation” ( see Gary Null.com). His business plan was possibly aided and abetted through his friendship with a creator of info-mercials, Steve Brown, who also had seemed to know people in public media. The rest is history.
Anti-vax is undergoing a metamorphosis- from highly specific, circumscribed woo to streaming, limitless woo * sans frontieres*.
Alt med itself is bursting through the restricting confines of health into the vast realms of social science, politics and economics.
** I keep my finger on the pulse of woo- and make sure to wash my hands very carefully afterwards.
@DB – Where’s the Kickstarter for this film? I’ll invest! 😉
Purely as idle speculation- after all, it’s Friday-
I would venture that I first noticed web woo-meisters intrepidly staking out new territory beyond health right after the economic crash of 2008- at least, the ones I survey began to focus on governmental and corporate malfeasance beyond that concerned with health.
I suppose that people may have been frightened about their money and decided to spend less on woo. Thus, various fear mongering efforts to get them to spend more because the world was crashing around them, so protect your health first as well as other schemes to ‘save yourself’ emerged.
The economic and lifestyle ones continue full-bore.
After the fall of Andy, anti-vaxxers may have the lost part of their general audience who might have been sympathetic. Perhaps the new broader scope of problems and causes beyond autism and vaccines is an attempt to recoup their losses.
A fact you won’t hear from those who are anti-vaccination: “In 2011, there were 158 000 measles deaths globally….”
One could easily call that a “health holocaust.”
It looks like 3 of their 6 talking points aren’t actually so bad. Sustainable Organic Agriculture isn’t a bad thing. Some cleaning and personal care products are actually pretty nasty. And your local congress critter should probably know about the superfund site (or the like) in their district – assuming there actually is one.
But the rest? Homeopathy in place of real medicine? Refusing proven treatments for common ailments? Don’t vacintate? Far more harm than good.
Am I the only one who sees the red t-shirt to read “drinkingmomsrevolution”?
The only way to do this, however, would be to identify real evidence demonstrating this claim is factual. Almost evidence isn’t enough..
Ugh, some people came to the public library in my town a few weeks ago, touting that same message that Lambert/Kobliner did. Their message was: deficiency in micronutrients causes ADHD, and we will do a “muscle test” to determine which micronutrients are too low, and then we can sell those supplements to you. The whole thing was unbelievable, and I emailed the library to let them know that I don’t think it is cool for a public library to be assisting the spread of bs. They responded, and it was clear they didn’t do too much research before they allowed these idiots to speak there.
My husband actually has ADHD, so he went to see these quacks, because they had another seminar date a couple of weeks after the one I saw. He was blown away by the claims these people were making, it was insane.
I looked up the company (Nature’s Sunshine) and it seems to be a pyramid scheme type of deal. There was a page of information for prospective/current salespeople on how to deal with an FDA inspection. They know perfectly well they are shady and taking advantage of desperate parents who don’t know any better.
While no one would argue that contaminated food or toxin-laden cleaning/ personal products are NOT problems, some of alt med’s solutions to these problems are outlandish:
Deirdre Imus suggests replacing all cleaning products in homes, schools and hospitals.
Mike Adams fears shampoos’ and toothpastes’ toxic ingredients and sells more natural substitutes.
GMOs are another issue looming on the horizon.
Today Natural News advises not using organic products that originate in China ( Adams is associated with a company that sells organic produce, home delivered).
Many discourage fluoridated and chlorinated water as well as pasteurised milk. Or gluten. Or animal products.
If you read through some of TMR’s discussions, you’ll see that they are obsessively concerned with food and lifestyle choices. I wonder how they got that way? Who ramps up those terrors?
The Canaries and this film capitalise on the public’s fear.
“Today Natural News advises not using organic products that originate in China”
Ve-ry interesting. Are we to assume that all the supplements and glop that Natural News’ store sells (as well as other goodies advertised on NN) are not formulated in China and do not use Chinese-supplied ingredients?
Color me skeptical.
*of course, even if none of this stuff had any Chinese connection whatsoever, it would still include foreign-supplied materials from places like Brazil and other nations, where potency and safety are not routinely tested for. It’s a consumer crapshoot regardless.
Quite the production budget. After all, the LHC zombie movie, Decay, came in at about $3000. One might suspect Beth is going to be handing out tens of thousands of dollars per victim to her pals.
Large Hadron Collider zombie movies? Clearly I need to get out more.
That contains too many meaningless buzzwords to be the product of sincere self-deception. When you’re offering to “connect the dots” for your audience, essentially you’re saying “Our audience consists of conspiracy-seeking morons who need everything spelled out slowly, and we will give them what they want”.
The Canary Project people are so contemptuous of their consumer base that here they are explaining — out in the open — how they identified the market and targeted the rubes, knowing that the rubes lack the sense to know that they’re being insulted.
It’s not bad. A bit forced in places, but a solid amateur effort, and the flesh-eating effects are pretty good. Can’t beat the ticket price.
I posted this on another thread. Get real folks. There REALLY is a Foundation dedicated to curing “Lyme-Induced Autism”
Beth Lambert has raised $ 845 so far, toward her goal of $ 250,000 for producing her film. Didn’t she state in her interview that she is a “philanthropist”? Sure looks like she will be dipping into her personal philanthropy funds.
Lambert’s fund raising for the film…
Indeed. I wouldn’t suggest going anywhere near as far as they do. Just that, at face value, the suggestion to be aware of the actual issues isn’t a bad idea. Unfortunately, I also realize that the issues they tend to bring up aren’t the valid concerns on the subjects at hand.
everybody’s favorite “brave maverick doctor,” […] is going to be lionized again
There is definitely a gap in the English language. “Vulturised” and “weaselised” are not recognised verbs.
herr doktor bimler (#28):
Some cheeky grad. students made use of the fact that they had access to the LHC grounds to shoot the film there in their off-time. (Despite it’s low-budget limitations, I imagine there are big big-budget Hollywood and “Wellywood” studios would be thinking “WTF”. Loosely the same genre as our Wellywood hero started on, too – ? Someone is bound to tell me splatter is different…)
You cannot imagine how much I despise the Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy hypochondriacs. I’m a parent of a kid with real chronic medical issues, including one that too commonly diagnosed by the autopsy after sudden death.
These folks actually further endanger people with genetic heart conditions by refusing vaccination. Hearts, especially those with scarring, are vulnerable to infection. Just listen to Mark Crislip’s Gobbet o’ Pus podcast, there are several that have to do with heart infections.
I really don’t understand how taking your kid to medical treatment is so attractive. I do not find it fun. I don’t like hospitals and ambulance rides, but that is just me.
@Herr Doktor Bimler, #28:
It wasn’t that brilliant, but if you’ve got 90 minutes to kill (preferably with a cricket bat) then you’ll at least get a few laughs out of it.
$250,000 to fund this film? Geez…one thing you can say about Beth Lambert – she doesn’t set the bar low.
@HDB – given what passes for Science Fiction on the SyFy channel now, I’ll take what I can get……
The film route is not a new one. There was a “brave maverick doctor treating chronic Lyme” movie up on Netflix for a while back in 2010, I think it was? Under My Skin. I saw it. And Business of Being Born is up there, too, along with a lot of altie birth crapola.
I think I’m sold on the “almost autism” epidemic, though. It would certainly explain the “triumph of the geek” in pop culture. After all, if we’re all a little autistic now, it makes sense we’re all geeks…
A niggly little point.
Orac describes her sidekick (sorry, on my phone and can’t be arsed to scroll back up) as a Dietician.
This side of the Pond Dietician is much the same as Doctor in that only properly qualified and accredited people may use the title.
Is she a dietician who has passed to the dark side or is she a nutritionist (lower case intentional)?
Or don’t dieticians have the same standing your side of the Atlantic?
Victoria Kobliner is a MS-RD (Registered Dietician)…which is a “protected professional title” in the U.K. and in the U.S.
Comparing a Registered Dietician to a nutritionist is like comparing a dentist to a toothiologist:
I think what she’s trying to say is not that “almost autism’ has characteristics of autism per se ( ‘geek’-ness) but that everything else that is chronic** and doesn’t look at all like autism is …”almost autism”.Oh, brilliant!
So asthma, GI conditions, allergies, psychological problems perhaps, all fall into the new category. Then, practically everyone I know has something.. asthma, IBD, depression.. even I have allergies. Despite being as un-autistic as possible, according to tests.
But then, that’s what the Canary Party has been saying ever since it came into existence. AND not much of it makes any sense either.
** -btw- isn’t *chronic* hip hop slang for smoking ganga?
Now can you tell me where I can qualify as a Toothiologist?
Seems like an ace job!
So the answer to my original queries was that she’s done a Dr Oz.
“Fortunately, on the surface it looks as though it will be so blatant that most people outside the autism biomed bubble will recognize it for the propaganda that it will be.”
I hope so, but what worries me is this: “A film that connects the dots for people.” or in other words by showing heartbraking stories of suffering and later improving children, they will manage to put the skepticism and critical thinking skills of at least some people to sleep and divert them that way from connecting the dots themselves and then plant the antivaxer’s version of the connected dots.
@ Peebs: You’d have to remove your teeth with string attached to a doorknob, to qualify as a “toothiologist”. 🙂
When these kids grow up (assuming they don’t actually have life-threatening conditions that will go untreated except by magic water and bleach enemas), they are going to HATE their parents.
I think Eminem put it best:
…victim of Munchausen’s syndrome, my whole life I was made to believe I was sick when I wasn’t, ’til I grew up, now I blew up, it makes you sick to ya’ stomach, doesn’t it? Wasn’t it the reason you made that CD for me, Ma? So you could try to justify the way you treated me, Ma? But guess what, you’re gettin’ older now and it’s cold when your lonely, and Nathan’s growing up so quick, he’s gonna know that your phoney, and Hailie’s getting so big now, you should see her, she’s beautiful, but you’ll never see her, she won’t even be at your funeral, see what hurts me the most is you won’t admit you was wrong, bitch, do your song, keep tellin’ yourself that you was a mom…
No, you’re thinking of “the chronic,” which is slang for, basically, “kind bud.” Then again, one never knows what one’s getting in certain parts of town. The University of Maryland Center for Substance Abuse Research regrettably labels this as a synonym for cocaine-laced marijuana, which seems unlikely, although I have heard the term “wack” reported from a visitor to the old local housing projects for putatively PCP-laced grass, which they also include.
At least they don’t recycle the assertion that a street name for LSD is “The Hawk,” which I seem to recall originated in an old federal pamphlet that was so chock-full of crazy slang that one might wonder whether they were deliberately being fed nonsense.
We all know how that works out (start around 6:30 if you dare; the Stooges actually had more than one encounter with amateur dentistry.)
“Almost autism” is simply a classic illustration of Texas sharpshooting. Its proponents simply looked at the various serious conditions kids are subject to, threw out anything whose incidence was decreasing or steady, and then jumped to the conclusion that the ones that were left must all be different forms of the same thing or at least have a common cause.
This whole autism vaccine thing drives me crazy! As the mother of an autistic adult son (he’s 22, also blind, and has non-epileptic seizures), you would be amazed at how brazen and heartless some of these anti-vaxers can be. Over the years, I have had dozens of people tell me to my face that it’s my fault that my son has these issues — because I allowed him to be vaccinated. As if being born at 28 weeks in 1990, with retinopathy of prematurity, and MRSA pneumonia and then spending nearly a year on a ventilator had nothing what-so-ever to do with his current condition. This movie, if released, will likely just add to the numbers of people who think that they know everything and can tell me what I did wrong.
Though some of these mothers make me angry as well. My son has all of these issues, but he does some pretty awesome things as well. He is obsessed with sorting objects. If I give him 3 or 4 matchbox cars, he will not “play” with them “correctly”. He will take them apart and make piles of their bits: tires, axles, bodies, doors – whatever he can remove will be sorted. The same goes for legos, lincoln logs, nuts and bolts, coins – whatever. Sorting is his thing. He has a 5 gallon bucket full of various coins – he sorts these into 1 gallon ice cream buckets. The cool thing is that if you put something like a bus token or a metal washer into his bucket, he will hold it for a minute, make a loud disgusted grunt, and throw it on the floor. He almost never speaks, but you call almost hear him yell, “worthless crap”! Sometimes I feel like they are so busy wishing they had the child of their dreams, they miss the awesome child right in front of them.
Real scientist Derek Lowe comments about a quantum-x type thing a company called Nativis is having vets test. These Munchhausen by proxy faux-epidemic folk would probably love this. Maybe if I turn the radio on, use the microwave, my phone, and wireless internet all at the same time, I could cure myself of something…
Shame on them!
Just the other day, a post at Thinking Moms’ Revolution was titled, ” How I Gave My Son Autism”, which enumerated the actions the writer took that “resulted” in autism: all of them- save one- were medical decisions ( ultrasound, C-section, pitocin, pain meds, antibiotics, vaccines) that experts would consider to be rather standard care in the 21st century.
Messages like this one provided ammunition to those who have treated you so despicably. Setting their own mis-guided beliefs above those of science-based medicine informs us a great deal about their own lack of information, understanding and compassion instead of revealing anything about you.
And yes, anti-vaxxers and alt med proselytisers have been spreading mis-information for years.
@Chris re #39 – No offense meant or intended by MbP references. I’m just mad as hell that Unthinking Moms Devolution and other parties have, to paraphrase Tweedledee, taken sets of symptoms and chosen them to mean whatever they want them to mean, blame false causes and the kids for everything and anything. And they think they’re martyrs for not having “perfect” children.
Valanda: Sometimes I feel like they are so busy wishing they had the child of their dreams, they miss the awesome child right in front of them.
This! I always feel disgusted that these parents can’t/won’t accept their child. I don’t have any myself, but I always thought unconditional love was part of the package, no matter if the kid has autism/learning disabilities, DS, or anything else.
It’s nice to see people like you, lilady, Autismum, and others, who do manage to live up to that ideal.
*I don’t have any children.* Once again, the brain goes faster than the fingers.
No offense intended. I get very upset by their actions. I don’t know if it is some kind of mental disorder that is associated with a narcissist mentality where they need the attention of being the mother sacrificing so much for their child.
But it angers me that children are deliberately injured or deprived of anything* just so they, the poor mother, can get attention. This is in addition to reducing herd immunity to diseases that could have injured my son when he was younger (he had had seizures, so he only got the DT vaccine, not the DTP).
* I had a recent conversation with a college friend of mine who have a child with Asperger’s who is doing okay. He still has issues with large groups, so he was homeschooled. But, they are now taking care of a young man whose parents claim is autistic, and as just gave him a very restrictive diet. Carrots are dessert, the only thing he is allowed to have that is the least bit sweet. No milk and no gluten. He is very very thin. Though, unlike their son, he now has both a driver’s license and a girlfriend (who he has snuck into his room). (His parents are overseas, and he did not wish to go with them).
Oops… No offense taken.
It would almost be nice if that was the result but I don’t see that being the case as the cycle of abuse could be broken. These children grow up so dependent upon their parents that they adopt their beliefs and believe themselves to be “damaged” by vaccines undoubtedly. A profound example of this has been a recent subject of this blog and the AoA crowd swoon in euphoria when a teenage autist announces they are ‘vaccine-damaged’ and must heal themselves. It’s really repugnant.
Meanwhile…The cranks at AoA have removed Anne Dachel’s investigative journalism blog, and the comments, about V.P. Joe Biden’s supposed lack of speech until he was 8 years old. Dachel, while cruising the internet found the story, through leaked documents from the White House…or, the discovery of Biden’s education records in the rubble left after a fire at the elementary school he attended:
This is the one internet reference I have found. Poor old doddering Anne…she’s certainly isn’t a Jake Crosby when it comes to investigative journalism.
This? She’s 404’d it herself.
I find it rather amusing that Olmsted described it as being “Spoofed!” rather than pointing out that the “Media Editor” is an unthinking robot who was probably chuckling at her own brilliant research skills while failing to understand a five-month-old parody.
Dachel didn’t “404” it, until after I read it and the comments, earlier today, Narad.
Satire recognition is HARD.
I meant on her personal site. Anyway, I find that the Firefox “Screengrab!” add-on works quite well.
If Dachel had done her homework on the internet, she would not have found “Keith U. Smegelsky” anywhere, and no “Coretree Center for Child Development Research”… at GWU…at GWU Medical Center…or anywhere.
“It’s not that he couldn’t pronounce the words,” explained Dr. Keith U. Smegelsky, Department Head of George Washington University’s Coretree Center for Child Development Research. “He had all of the physical and fine-motor capabilities he needed to form sounds and words. His pathology, one I’ve never encountered in my 27 years of study in this field, was that he could not combine words into any thing resembling coherent thoughts.”…
Alternatively, she could have contacted Jake at GWU School of Public Health to see if he could locate Dr. Smegelsky and/or the “Coretree Center for Child Development Research”.
Reminds me of AoA’s crack research team and their drive-by study of Amish children who aren’t vaccinated and who aren’t autistic, except that “Blaxsted” couldn’t locate a large autism treatment center.
“Screengrab” Narad? I just recently figured out how to “link” and cut and paste.
For those using Macs, the ‘Grab’ application is tucked away under ‘Utilities’. Unsolicited, and no doubt unwanted, advice 🙂
Oh, it’s easy. The one I’ve been using is EOL’d, but it looks as though somebody has updated it. (There are ways to get the original to keep working, but I doubt you want to know.)
It’s just a convenient way to grab an image of an entire page in one swell foop.
I’m pretty sure that will only get you the visible area.
Hi Grant: I’m on a laptop using Windows 7 operating system.
I am totally inept when it comes to computer techie skills…sigh.
Well, it was all over after NT, anyway. Let’s talk browsers and security.
Wait? Dachel actually believed a story that a kid did not speak until age five, eight or forty seven? Those of us who have kids with speech disorders hear these all the times.
The one I hate is about Einstein (he could speak at the time his sister was born, which was a bit over two years old, he was told he could play with his new little sister, and the family story states that he asked “Where are the wheels?”, at that age my son could not say any of those words). Crud, I even got a stupid story like that from the librarian claiming husband could not speak at a certain when I inquired about books on speech development.
Each and every time I heard one of those stories I asked about the details. When you hang around speech therapists, you get to learn some about speech development and the jargon they use. Were there any word approximations? Was it only single word utterances, or a sentence like string of words? What was the MLU (Mean Length of Utterance)? The response to my queries was often a confused look. Apparently they had no idea that “learning to talk” was not a binary process. You don’t start from silence to full sentences in a day… or a year.
Ms. Dachel has obviously not learned much from speech therapists. Or, as we have learned, how to do basic fact checking.
I believe that was Olmsted not finding the Clinic for Special Children, which was not just for autism but the several genetic issues the Amish have.
lilady, one key on your keyboard will have some little letters that say “prt sc.” On my keyboard it is the “Home” key above the number keypad.
Press on the “fn” key (near the “ctrl” and “alt” key), and then the “prt sc” key. Then open a paint type program (like Paint, PhotoShop or Paintshop), open up a new file and then hit the “ctrl” key with the “v”, or use a right click on the mouse and choose “paste.”
Not the most sophisticated way, but it works.
“Press on the “fn” key (near the “ctrl” and “alt” key), and then the “prt sc” key. ”
At the same time.
My browser is Firefox and I have Kaspersky security.
Let’s talk laptops. I’ve got a Lenovo ThinkPad and I paid for an extended warranty. Just before the end of the year’s extended warranty the mother board went and was repaired in my home by one of Lenovo’s local contractors.
My husband is using an old (7-8 years?) H-P laptop which is slowly dying. (The screen is shot and he has it plugged into an old monitor.) He wants a new laptop with a large screen, say 17 inches or larger. The local computer store which carries a huge selection, recommends a non-ThinkPad Lenovo laptop. What do you think for a simple reliable laptop with no bells/whistles with a large screen?
@ Chris: Dear Hubby taught me to use the mouse left button to scan over the printed material, gingerly release the left button, then go to the “Edit” top tool bar, open it up for “Copy” and then go to the comment section and “Paste” I even know how to “Copy” and “Paste” on to an email…I’m so proud!!!
Your opinion as well, about a new laptop for DH would be appreciated.
Any opinions about a wireless printer for both laptops, would be appreciated as well. We have been using a crappy H-P with messy ink cartridges that is plugged into DH’s old H-P laptop.
@ Chris: I think the parody/spoof about Joe Biden *might* have been written to highlight his propensity to blurt things out and “overtalk” when he he is questioned about a particular topic.
The classic was when J.B. didn’t realize the mic was open and he whispered in Obama’s ear “You’re a real BFD”.
My daughter taught me the “fn” “prt sc” several years ago on very old desktop. What it does is put the entire screen into a “buffer” (what you do when you click “copy”). All you need to do is go to a graphics program (like “Paint”), and then to the “Paste” bit.
I only use the computers, I do not do buy them. This is laptop was bought several years after I literally killed a laptop I “inherited” from a child by spilling a glass of wine on it. I am married to a computer scientist, so he does most of the hardware decisions.
Sorry, you are on your own.
Do you remember when you used to do all the links for me, when I first arrived at RI, Chris? 🙂
It’s not that we are too cheap to buy a super deluxe laptop, but it would be purchasing (over-buying) a laptop that is beyond our minimal needs. All the legal stuff that is on DH’s laptop will be dumped, as he is retired now and the “stuff” is outdated.
Shills and Minions:
O Perilous Fatback, there’s good news on the propaganda front! We’re in negotiations now with the Lifetime Network (my lizards are talking to their lizards) to air Patricia’s Powerful Prozac and Megan Fox has signed onto the sequel and will reprise her role as the plucky Patricia. We’re terribly enthusiastic about this project and I’m told we’re all going to “do lunch.”
As for this alleged Hot Lizard Porn of 2012, the secretary disavows any knowledge of it, don’t you Miss Flinders? We are however in prelim on the somewhat less explicit Reptiloids Gone Wild: Leapin’ Lounge Lizards of Vegas 3 featuring some of the cast of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. I’m sure it will be a big hit.
Being in “the industry” is simply exhausting. It’s much harder than evil overlording and and hunting alties. So many tiresome rules and regulations, and you can’t just eat someone if they misbehave, and if you do then someone called an “ombudsman” will appear with a clipboard and demand answers and then you have to eat them and before you know it you have a stack of corpses and you have to freeze them so they don’t go bad. Then you forget them behind the Flenk and they get freezer burned and you end up throwing them out.
Honestly, I’m leaving this to lizards who can tolerate staying shapeshifted in that heat and have a modicum of restraint, like my colleague, Sumner Redstone (we shared a pod at the Academy).
Well, after Astra and I attend an industry affair being thrown by someone called Oscar or Oksana or something, (I’m so bad with names) it’ll be off with this infernally itchy ShiftField and back to 24/7 PharmaEvil for me . . . and all of you.
Lord Draconis Zeneca, VH7ihL
Forward Mavoon of the Great Fleet, Pharmaca Magna of Terra, Ready For My Closeup
Glaxxon PharmaCOM Studios
Well, if you can do with black-and-white, I’ve been pretty happy with a Brother HL-2170W laser that I picked up for a song. It can’t be arsed to figure out what to do when it runs out of paper, but it’s fine otherwise.
OK, here’s the deal: If you want to capture a page, you don’t just want to capture the screen, you want the whole shebang. Should you wish to do this, try the Screengrab update linked above. If it works, it will put a little button at the bottom of the Firefox window that will allow you to grab everything in one go.
My partner loves telling people about how I broke our laptop. I threw it at a spider.
In my defence it was huge, weird (not like normal British spiders), and coming right for me.
I really hate spiders.
@ Narad: Thanks for your opinion. We’ll be looking into that Brother model. “It can’t be arsed….” (?)
B&W is fine for our needs…largest print job is always our Turbo Tax Income returns…one copy for our records and we E-File.
We don’t want a desk top computer because we use the laptops on our dining room table and just stash them when we have guests for dinners. The printer will be upstairs alongside the wireless router. The history of mother board replacement on the ThinkPad Lenovo makes us somewhat leery about a stripped-down large screen Lenovo laptop.
I got it about two years ago for under $100. They may not still make this model, but it seems like a reasonably solid product line. I don’t care for inkjets, myself, hence a cheap laser printer. (I can tell you the tape trick to make the toner last longer if it comes to this.)
Sounds a bit like the way I broke my electric typewriter.
When my boyfriend wrote me he didn’t want to continue our relation, I pushed my typewriter from my desk and it went as far as the cable allowed.
Narad (#73) – for Macs one approach to save the whole page is to “Print” it, saving the output to a PDF file.
That is indeed one way to go about things, but it doesn’t seem to understand CSS, so the output is rather crufted (at least as a recent test has shown; note that I’m on 10.4.11, and only grudgingly moved from 10.3.9).
I’m late to this discussion as usual, but I’ll second Narad’s suggestion of a laser printer. I got one several years ago and have never regretted it: it’s quick, quiet and reliable. I certainly don’t miss faffing about with blocked up inkjet cartridges and either paying a ridiculous amount for new ones or getting in a mess trying to refill them.
As long as you don’t need to print in color often, get a laser. If I really need something printed in color, which is very rare, I stick it on a USB stick and take it to a local printshop.
@lilady: the Brother printer is definitely wonderful. Prints fast and handles tax returns very well, the toner cartridge lasts a long time, and easy to set up for wireless.
I have no laptop recommendations. I’ve had very good luck with my macbook, but they are expensive. Have lovely large screens and are easy to use. PC wise…never had one last more than 2-3 years without something terminal going wrong so I’ll stay out of THAT conversation! 🙂
@85 – The ScreenGrab! button can only be seen when pressing a right-click, it does not appear at the bottom of the FIrefox window, unless that is the window to which you refer.
When I use it, after I have saved the page once, a ScreenGrab! bar/button will appear below the Firefox window indicating that the image has been saved.
ScreenGrab! seems far superior to Pdf It!, which does not always save using the intended and configured extension, nor does it always save the entire page despite such configuration. Thanks for the suggestion Narad!
@Narad and Krebiozen, How do you send and receive faxes? Can you recommend the best utility for performing backups, including that of email? I need a utility that would especially allow for fairly easy retrieval of accidentally deleted emails, or a full database recovery in case of a corrupted email file.
That’s simple – I don’t 😉
I still haven’t found an entirely satisfactory solution myself, and have recently found myself having to use a data recovery utility to recover some stuff I hadn’t backed up adequately. You could just leave your emails on your email provider’s server instead of downloading them, and trust them to manage any backups – you can do that using an email client like Thunderbird if you prefer using one.
There are various free on-line backup facilities – Zone Alarm offers one – or you could try something like EaseUS ToDo Backup, which I am playing with at present. If your data is really valuable you really need to back it up in a different building in case of fire or burglary. Personally I just backup to a different PC on my home network as I’m really only concerned about corrupted hard drives chewing up my data. The most important thing is to make it automated as it is far too easy to forget, which you will inevitably regret eventually.
Norton 360 includes a backup utility, but either it or perhaps myself are lacking in the best approach to email backup and restores. It seems that each individual email message is saved across several files, so it is not easy to restore an individual message.
After a while, older email messages need to be archived off so the database file does not get too big. I start experiencing access speed problems and what seem to be data indexing problems when I have too many email messages. Keeping emails saved on anyone else’s server on the Internet is not an option that I would ever trust.
You have convinced me to look into a laser printer the next time mine needs replacing. You are such a helpful group, at least most of you – stay away Marg and Judith. 🙂
Brother laser printer it is then for us. What a waste of money and a mess when we tried to use Costco’s refilled H-P ink cartridge.
Plain vanilla Lenovo laptop..not the ThinkPad? Maybe we will hit the local library for some computer magazines to find some suggestions. Thanks again for your help.
Meanwhile, back at AoA, Dachel has done a small piece (to make up for spoof/parody that was yanked?), touting the recent TMR’s “How I Gave My Son Autism”..
Stone has also conjured up some garbage about Brian Deer and the “sludge expert” David Lewis…while it appears that Jake is still in the “penalty box”.
@Narad: Screengrab-thanks. It works! Always enjoying these threads. Tangential relevance – but it’s folk-woo – irked about amber teething necklaces. Trying to compose a note to HH on this.
@ THS: Autismum wrote about amber teething necklaces on her own blog and she blogged twice about them on the Skeptoid blog:
According to my employer’s internet policies, I have to say that I am an employee of Hewlett-Packard before I write this comment.
I’ve had an HP LaserJet 4 for years. It works great, and has been repaired once. I’ve used HP laptops at work for the last 10 years or so, and have never had a problem with one. I personally recommend HP printers because of the quality and features, not because of my employer.
As to refilled cartridges – you take your chances with refills. Some people get great results; others have disasters. There’s a reason beyond simple margin that HP doesn’t refill toner cartridges.
-btw- I notice that a large box containing a Brother multi-fx fax/copy/printer sits unopened in the other room. Ha Ha! A certain gentleman was to use it to print photos etc. It has been there for a year or two; I imagine that it will probably remain there for several more.
re the ridiculous story about a non-speaking VP JB:
it illustrates the general cluelesssness of AD and others @ AoA- first of all. the numbers don’t make sense: ” 27 years”= isn’t the VP over age 65? How old is the doc then? Don’t the names of the doctor and of the facility look hideously unreal? Weren’t non-talking children treated differently in those days? Isn’t JB known for talking too much? You can’t make up stories like this! Seriously!
About John Stone’s preoccupation with BD:
He will fabricate and perseverate at the drop of a hat. Does he really expect that his hero, Andy will be vindicated through an accumulation of tiny -and un-related- events that loom large only in his fevered imagination? The opposite of death-by-a-thousand-cuts?
Some people have a problem discerning what information is relevant and whether it’s important or not.
Interestingly, familiar guys show up in the comments: Martin Walker may have switched from being a hanger-on in AJW’s merry chase and is persuing a new will-o-the-wisp: 9/11. He seems to have subscribed to the notion that what governments and scientists have agreed upon as being causative is totally unsupported.
Struthers appears as well.
What is this, a sort of club?
Denice Walter – do people really print pictures anymore? And if you need that, isn’t it cheaper (and higher quality) to put your pictures on a memory stick and carry them to your local pharmacy or print shop?
Right. That’s what I do. I was not the purchaser of the item but I do have to sit and look at it though. I do know someone who might need a fax though.
On a lighter note afore I leave:
Stone’s piece gets a comment from Ms Dr Carmel.
@lilady: Yes. I’ve seen autismum’s wonderful comments. If I recall correctly, you may have weighed in, too. I’ve been enjoying your & Chris’ comments on HH’s thread & would get on there if I could think of a cooler ‘nym.
@ THS: Autismum is one of my favorite bloggers…because she has the guts to take on bureaucracies on behalf of all children.
I don’t need to receive them, although I suppose I could, but I’ve been known to use the Gimp to add a scan of my signature to something I need to send and then fax from the internal modem on the PowerBook. (Yes, I’m really cheap.)
My octogenarian neighbor, who is a semiprofessional photographer and has a bum knee replacement, does. I set up her new printer for her last fall; it was a rather fancy inkjet, but I don’t recall the model.
@ Denice Walter:
Thanks for the heads up about Ms. Dr. Carmel Wakefield comment on AoA. She is b!tching about the Panorama TV show and the supposed bias of their reporting of a case of SSPE…with her particular *spin* about the cause of the case of a child who contracted measles in infancy, but who also had two MMR vaccines. Her *theory* if I am comprehending her comment correctly, is that the SSPE “could have” been caused by measles vaccine.
“What the viewing public were not told, and what I only found out three years later was that in fact Adam Morrish, having apparently been exposed possible measles as a child was then definitely given two doses of MMR including a booster dose in 1990, but that his parents “intuition” was that the MMR “was not a relevant factor in his condition”. Mr Morrish did however confirm that he had not withheld the information from Sarah Barclay and the Panorama team. They had simply chosen not to make any reference to that crucial fact and to leave the public with the impression that this boy’s catastrophic condition “illustrated the dangers of natural measles.”
When challenged with the fact that this key omission was both unprofessional and unscientific, Sarah Barclay simply twisted the letter of challenge to say that it would have been wrong to “state that Adam had got SSPE from the vaccine”. This had not been asked of her of course. The point was quite simply that this boy’s condition could well have been precipitated by the fact that he was given MMR and it was therefore wrong to neglect to give this information to the public in a programme, which was allegedly about parents’ choice.”
I don’t know if Adam Morrish finally succumbed to the SSPE…and if he did die, whether or not he was autopsied. I bet Carmel and Andy know those details and a *responsible* medical doctor who comments about an SSPE case on AoA, would have provided those details.
Omitting such facts is a form of lying.
Well, look at an analysis of autopsies of the 11 people who were diagnosed with SSPE in the U.K. (1965-2000 Inclusive)
and the results of brain tissues analyses:
J Neurovirol. 2002 Aug;8(4):335-44.
Characterization of measles virus strains causing SSPE: a study of 11 cases.
Jin L, Beard S, Hunjan R, Brown DW, Miller E.
Enteric, Respiratory, and Neurological Virus Laboratory, Central Public Health Laboratory, London, United Kingdom. [email protected]
Eleven subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) cases diagnosed in the UK between 1965 and 2000 were investigated. The entire or partial matrix (M), hemagglutinin (H), and nucleoprotein (N) genes of measles virus (MV) were sequenced following direct RT-PCR amplification from brain tissues. All the M genes showed the characteristic biased hypermutations and a premature termination codon was detected in 5/11 M sequences. Based on the more highly conserved H and N genes observed in persistent MV studies, phylogenetic analysis showed that two of three strains from patients likely to have acquired infection in the 1950s were related to clade C (WHO designation) and one appears to be a novel genotype. Three strains from patients infected in the 1960s and 1970s were clearly related to a MV strain isolated in 1974 belonging to genotype D1. Four strains from patients infected in the 1980s clustered with genotype D7 strains. One sequence from a patient infected in 1990s was identified as genotype D6. No vaccine strains were detected although five of these patients had been previously immunized. The sequence data obtained from these historic strains do not support the view that vaccine strains are associated with SSPE and provide valuable information for further studies of MV epidemiology, evolution, and pathogenesis in SSPE.
Long comment stuck in moderation about John D. Stone’s latest AoA rant and Ms. Dr. Carmel Wakefield’s comment.
ALAS! I am WAY too late to this thread-party to post this video in response to Denise W.’s comment about “chronic”, but to continue my longstanding tradition of lurkery followed by sporadic largely-content-free posts, HERE IT IS! 😀
I’m mostly just reading along on this thread out of pure disgust at the whole “almost autism” thing. It is so offensive as to be head-exploding.
I’m on a very old OS X Firefox, so it wouldn’t surprise me if YMMV. But I get little icons at the bottom right of the regular browser window (RefControl, Greasemonkey, Screengrab, Textarea Cache), so if I click on the Screengrab one, it pops a menu with save and copy options.
@Narad – Ooops, it’s there. It’s a tiny lil’ thing. 🙂
It is on the far right edge of the Firefox Navigation Bar at the top of the screen .
Got any tips about email backup and restores?
Again, being cheap and on OS X, I simply back up the entire disk periodically to an external 500 GB drive using SuperDuper. If I upgraded it to the paid version, I could do incremental backups, but I’d as soon figure out rsync first. My E-mail lives externally, but it’s with folks that I trust.
As I don’t know your mail client, or Norton 360, or whether you’re backing up the entire inbox or saving individual messages, I’m not going to be of much use in this regard.
I have reported “The Answers Project” fundraising initiative by Lambert which is on the Indiegogo donation site for “Prohibited Content”, in that it poses a danger to health and risk of harm to others or could encourage others to engage in such similar activities.
lilady, re the AoA Carmel Wakefield/Panorama comments. I see that regarding the diagnosis of SSPE in Adam,
Carmel seems very upset at this.
How can this be? Surely, she should know, above anyone, that parents’ intuition provides the most accurate medical diagnosis and is unparallelled and highly superior to any doctor’s opinion, or any scientific evidence? I mean, one should always listen to the parents, right? Isn’t that what dear old Andy always says to you Carmel? And surely Adam is his parents’ own science, and they have absolutely no need for anyone else to offer an informed opinion?
@ dingo199: Here, from Brian Deer’s website, the transcript from the Panorama TV program that Ms.Dr. Carmel Wakefield refers to:
So…where’s the proof that Adam Morrish or any other person diagnosed with SSPE…anywhere…was “damaged” by the strain of measles contained in single antigen measles vaccine….or triple antigen MMR vaccine?
Proof? We don’t need no stinkin’ proof…
Previous film projects abandoned by this team:
“Almost Science”, a look at how a bunch of people with business degrees promoted the idea that autism is similar to. Mercury poisoning.
“Almost the truth”, an epic film of the public statements and publications of Andrew Wakefield.
Almost relevant, a look at the groups promoting the idea that vaccines cause autism.
“Almost funny”, the satire of AoA. Starring Yosemite Olmsted.
“Almost a connection”, a look at “investigative journalism” of Jake Crosby.
“Almost responsible”, the medical advice of DAN!
It just goes on and on.
The sad but obvious question to pose: why don’t they just do a documentary of the children of the “editors” of AoA. It’s been much more than two years,chelation should have worked by now. As well as OSR#1, stem cells, “treating” xmrv. We could get a look at the $100k/year school that a “recovered” child of “almost a celebrity” seems to need.
I know its harsh, but its the truth.
@I. Rony Meter, Relax, the’ Future of Medicine’ is here. The whole plan is laid out in this video.
The truth is that young Joe Biden was given an experimental 3-in-1 jab MMR long before any of the component vaccines were invented. That, together with the thimerosal he ingested from a treatment for his grandparent’s “hysteria” combined to give him autism. His parents, lapsed Amish, took him to live with the Inuit where, luckily for young Joe, no gluten or casien could be had, leading to his recovery at age eight. The government, fearing for the loss of huge profits in vaccines not yet invented bought off the Biden family with promises of government employment for Joe when he grew up.
The humor is poor, but better than anything AoA has put out.
The conspiracy theory is lacking in substance, yet more believable than anything AoA has put out.
I. Rony Never – That is not poor quality humour, it is more or less a typical post on (Un)Thinking Mom’s Devolution, and they always make me laugh!
Seriously though, good job. Chuck in something about a GMO conspiracy and a nanoparasite killed by shot of bleach up the arse, and you too could be writing regularly for TMR, under a name like ‘Moonblood Goddess Mama’.
I feel justified in posting something fairly OT after the extended computer purchasing thread.
In case any of the readers here are interested in autistic adult advocacy matters, there’s an autistic flash blog project called “Autistic People Should…” because we are, as a group, appalled that the top Google autocompletion for this is “Die.” I don’t know what Autistics did to piss off so many people, but we want to provide some more positive and humane suggestions.
I’m frankly having difficulty making heads or tails out of Stone’s “beneath the waterline” piece. Nature is going to remove a comment from Deer because of a bit of legal censorious asshattery “shortly to be published on-line” sent to BMJ?
The letter from Kohn to UW-L that AoA provides a broken link to (actually here; PDF) is nearly incoherent. It takes six pages to get to the heart of the matter, viz.,
Yes, I’m sure they’re right on this.
One nice bit in one of the rambling footnotes (Lewis has been on Paul Harvey!), though:
Currently, Dr. Lewis collaborates with Professor Christopher Shaw on vaccine safety research at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Professor Shaw is the recipient of a $500,000 private estate grant, which will be used to fund research Dr. Lewis proposed.
This is a riot:
Leaving aside Lexington itself, why on earth is UW-L supposed to be impressed by the hotel?
Oh, dear, I’m just now getting to the comments. I see that Stone’s bizarre obsession with being ignored by the Leveson Inquiry appears to have deeper roots:
I cannot begin to imagine the decadal campaign of crazed pestering of the BBC he’s been attempting to wage.
Kohn has his own show @ prn ( see shows; hosts) as well as a phoney ‘whistleblowers’ group – named so that it might be confused with the real one. He hangs with Lewis; Lewis works with Shaw.
Isn’t it intriguing how many interconnections exist in the rarified air of the woo-esphere? I sometimes imagine a vast network- with weights assigned either by degree of relation or amount of audience ( probably influenced by my studies of both semantic memory and path analysis).
However if we looked closely, we’d realise that it’s only a very few people who get around an awful lot!
It seems that they cluster around particular personalities. Which makes AJW a very bright star in that particular constellation of mendacity and posturing.
re the hotel:
It is as if to say that “We’re important! We stay at REALLY nice hotels!”
re the BBC: and some poor person has to read all of his letters and e-mails.
Need I remind you that Stone posted his inanities on Alex Hannaford’s Texas Observer blog? At least Jake was “smart enough” to exit the blog after one comment.
Stone hung in there and got his a$$ whupped
@ Narad: I’m smelling an attempt to blackmail the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse into offering David Lewis an opportunity to present a program at the University…based on that rambling incoherent attorney’s letter.
@lilady – I was surprised that he ultimately gave up so easily, but then again, when you make the same comments for a decade, in the face of mountains of contrary evidence, I guess it does get old (getting whupped all over the place).
@ Lawrence: I’m not at all surprised about Stone’s retreat. It is, after all, his typical behavior, when he ventures off the AoA blog and *pretends* that he has any credibility on science blogs.
I’m late to this discussion but wanted to share a video testimony by a mother who did not vaccinate her child and now wishes she had. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8NJLaAenOE
I knew a freshman in college who’d been rendered completely deaf when she caught measles or mumps in her late teens. And my genetics class took a field trip to a state institution for the “mentally retarded” where the exhibits included a young woman who was deaf, blind, dumb, and had a very low IQ because her mother had Rubella during pregnancy.
So many people can only believe anecdotes. Maybe we should flood the Internet with true stories.
I have always, always had a Mac or one sort of another and all these comments make me very glad I spent a bit extra. Seems to me that by the time you buy all that extra software for PC’s, it costs just as much. I have no added security, have never had any “bugs” and just passed on a still-functioning six year old laptop to a family member. I use the “print”, save as PDF for saving a page a suggested by Grant–works great! I think this new model has an even smoother way to that end, but I’ve only had it a week and am still getting into its refinements.
I’m a “rubella kid” myself, on the milder end of the scale with just partial hearing and sight loss.
As for anecdotes, I included in the article a letter from a mother whose daughter was affected by rubella – might be the sort of thing you’re thinking of – ?
*Sigh* Every now and then I get a left-right typing inversion over the ‘/’ and ‘a’ in closing an a tag… Rats.
The link is on a “rubella kid” myself
Given the amount of flakiness I’ve had with the two PowerBooks (screen problems on both, loss of internal speakers when upgrading to OS X 10.5 that didn’t come back with a downgrade, etc.) and my general dislike for the amount of squirreling crap away in layer after layer of aimless folders, not to mention the impossibility of getting reasonable point-to-focus thanks to the clumsy slapping on of the menu bar to OpenStep (I still have a NeXTstation Color; it was superior to OS X in every way), I am seriously considering looking at OpenBSD when the time comes around.
So…I know nothing and want to know nothing about Windows—I went straight from DOS 3.3 to the Mac OS—but what exactly do all these other methods of getting a screengrab do for you that simply hitting Shift-Command-3 doesn’t do?
I admit I’ve hardly ever had occasion to do this, but I grab a selected area with Shift-Command-4 all the time. Unfortunately, the default storage method is PDF, and I think you need something like TinkerTools to change the preference to Jpg. I wish they wouldn’t hide so many preferences.
@ Grant: I knew you were affected by rubella in utero. I recall the wife of one of my co-workers contracting rubella during a later stage of her pregnancy. It was a real concern until she she delivered a healthy baby girl.
See my comment # 110 above about Ms. Dr. Carmel Wakefield’s “theory” about a case of SSPE that “might have/could have been caused by MMR vaccine”.
Adam Morrish died in 2005 of sale at age 24. He had a measles infection prior to his vaccination at 14 months. Given the dates we can assume he had the single jab, not the MMR. You know, the one Wakers says is safer.
Not that it appears the vaccine is what caused the sspe.
[…] example of the price last week when I took note of how an antivaccinationist named Beth Lambert was shilling for money to complete a film in which she plans on subjecting seven autistic children to “autism biomed” quackery in […]
@ I. Rony Meter: Carmel Wakefield definitely claims that Adam Morrish was given 2 MMR vaccines. The direct quote from her comment at AoA:
“What the viewing public were not told, and what I only found out three years later was that in fact Adam Morrish, having apparently been exposed possible measles as a child was then definitely given two doses of MMR including a booster dose in 1990, but that his parents “intuition” was that the MMR “was not a relevant factor in his condition”. Mr Morrish did however confirm that he had not withheld the information from Sarah Barclay and the Panorama team. They had simply chosen not to make any reference to that crucial fact and to leave the public with the impression that this boy’s catastrophic condition “illustrated the dangers of natural measles.”
IF young Adam received a measles vaccine at 14 months of age, it would have been a single antigen vaccine (The triple jab MMR was not introduced in the U.K. until 1988). I’m not certain that single antigen measles vaccine was still available in 1990, once the MMR vaccine was introduced two years prior…but Carmel Wakefield states outright that he was given 2 measles vaccine doses in the form of the MMR vaccine..including a booster MMR vaccine in 1990.
I suppose it is possible that the child was not immunized at the typical time (~ 14 months of age) and received both measles vaccines in 2 MMR shots, once the triple jab became available in 1988.
It simply does not make a difference, because neither the single antigen measles vaccine strain or the MMR measle vaccine strain, have ever been in the brain tissue tested during the autopsies of young people who died from SSPE. Every autopsy and testing of brain tissue from those who died, has shown the infective virus to be wild-type measles virus.
Good to learn her child was OK & thanks for the heads-up.
The Screengrab add-on for Firefox (if it works on your Firefox) will accurately grab an entire Web page, top to bottom, not just the screen.
Shift-cmd-4 saves to PNG for me by default on 10.4.11; YMMV. OS X’s Quartz display layer uses PDF essentially natively, so it makes sense. The standard Preview application will convert these for you. Or you should be able to change the default behavior from the terminal with something like ‘sudo defaults write com.apple.screencapture type jpg’.
And, if I may continue to rant about OS X, it’s stuff like TinkerTool that drives me bats. Yes, we’re going to build a 4 MB, involuted GUI to accomplish something that requires 47 characters.
Jake really doesn’t know when to stop digging that hole, does he?
@Rebecca – I just saw that. You have two groups over there that are definitely at odds – the one side that knows to pander to its core constituency & hype up the whole vaccine – autism link, but realizes that putting the nutjobs in front of Congress would have a lasting negative impact on their mainstream credibility, and the other (now led by the likes of Jake, the Geiers, Bolan & Dr. Hooker, et. al.) that have swallowed the whole story, hook, line & sinker and don’t realize how crazy they actually sound to normal people.
It will be interesting – window into the mindset over there and also just plain fun to watch.
Oh, Jake is just amazing. His article reminds me of how, at the start of a very long flight, I attempted to read a novel by Stieg Larsson that someone had given me: after about two hundred pages of convoluted plot and a rapidly fluctuating cast of unseemly characters, I decided to just look out the window instead. At least, what I saw there made sense.
But more seriously, Jake has burnt his bridges: by sidling up to anti-vaccinationist cranks like Blaxill, he has already decimated his chances for a real career in epi or even business ( unless it was to be parentally funded), now by attacking his host, he has severed ties with the largest anti-vax groups** and must now hang with the fringe-y edge.
** Blaxill is involved in AoA, SafeMInds and the Canary Party.
Probably more, I wouldn’t be at all surprised.
@Denise – I wonder if publishing Jake’s original rant in its entirety was the price AoA was willing to pay to get him to go away, perhaps?
…”refuse antibiotics for their children’s ear infections or viral sore throats”
Actually, this is the one bit of good advice that these people are practicing. First of all, antibiotics are not effective against viruses. http://www.cdc.gov/features/getsmart/
Second, just today the American Academy of Pediatrics released a new set of guidelines recommending “Antibotics like amoxicillin should only be given to kids diagnosed with an ear infection who are showing severe symptoms — such as pain and swelling — for at least 48 hours or those who have a fever higher than 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit.” http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57571103/antibiotics-for-ear-infections-pediatricians-release-new-guidelines/
I totally agree. The main point was the fact that Morrish had died. The fact that Carmel Wakefield was incorrect about him getting 2 MMR vaccines is sloppy on her part. Also possibly bias given that they claim that the single vaccine is somehow safer.
The papers also indicate a minimum of 5 years to onset of SSPE. Morrish showed symptoms in, what, less than 3 years from his MMR? The Wakefields are stretching the argument really thin to implicate MMR.
Sure, as well as showing the faithful how he operates: they want to hang on to as many supporters as possible in case JC starts up his own franchise.
How hilarious would that be?
@ I. Rony Meter: You are being too kind about Ms. Dr. Carmel Wakefield’s *sloppy* post. How about her involvement with the patent holder of an alternative measles vaccine and her involvement with the establishment of Immunospecifics LTD and Carmel Health Care to develop and market laboratory tests for Andy’s bogus diagnosis of “autistic enterocolitis”.
All the warring luminaries of the anti-vaccine world will be present at the 2013 Generation Rescue/Autism One Conference, including Jake, Blaxill, Olmsted, Bolen, both Geiers, Hooker…along with the usual suspects.
Has Jake been “exvited” along with Bolen?
@Rebecca … no, he doesn’t. But, to be fair to him … they haven’t really told him how to figure that bit out……
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