Getting No Love: Age Of Autism Wants Autism Speaks To Shut Up
    By Kim Wombles | August 29th 2011 07:23 AM | 27 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
    About Kim

    Instructor of English and psychology and mother to three on the autism spectrum.

    Writer of the site (where most of these


    View Kim's Profile
    Dan Olmsted is pissed at Autism Speaks and wants them to shut up and go away, all because of Dr. Dawson's coverage of the IOM report this past week.

    Olmsted writes, proving there is no evidence he will consider that will allow him to reconsider his position: "vaccines do cause autism. Yes, the MMR causes autism. Yes, vaccine mercury causes autism. Yes, multiple vaccines too soon and too close together cause autism. They are the main driver of the autism epidemic." And your evidence, sir, that counters yet another IOM report showing they do not? Anecdotes are not evidence.

    His second reason is because of the canary study and "Andy Wakefield's brave work, which of course Autism Speaks is too cowardly to get anywhere near, and all the subsequent research that confirms it."

    The third reason is even better: Olsted says Autism Speaks is "The Man's favorite autism org."

    Given that Katie Wright is an Age of Autism contributor, on the NAA's board, and Autism Speaks is a $10,000 bronze sponsor of their national conference this year (which Olmsted, Blaxill and Stagliano presented at last year but are not on the presenters' list this year), and the daughter of the founders of Autism Speaks, Olmsted's pissiness is interesting.  Another interestng tidbit: from what I can glean from the wayback machine, Wakefield's spoken at the NAC since at least 2005, every single year, so Autism Speaks went into that sponsorship knowing he'd be there. If the NAC audience is as hostile as Olmsted, that sponsorship may not help bring more members of the community to AS.

    It's sour grapes, is what it is, on Olmsted's point, and shows that for almost all of the Age of Autism writers (and perhaps supporters), it boils down to vaccines. Always to vaccines.

    Olmsted writes about Autism Speaks, "If there was any value in its "awareness" campaign, it has been achieved; AS has no apparent further reason for being." This ignores the reality that AS is the second largest private-sector provider of research dollars, that for every $1 spent on research, $10 is leveraged, that the AS website has thousands of pages providing information, that it provides printed copies of 100-Day toolkits and transition toolkits for free to families and has several other toolkits for parents, that they have 17 centers in their Autism Treatment Network, that they provide emergency family grants, resourses for autistic individuals in the workplaces, and  so much more.

    Whether you like the organization or not, whether you think they've got a long way to go in making sure that adults on the spectrum are represented throughout their organization (and not just in volunteership), or you have some other criticism (like $93,000 given to fund a pro-FC study that was poor science exemplified), the reality is that there is no organization with as broad a reach and with the capital to do as much as Autism Speaks does.

    Going into hostile territory like the NAC seems to me to be foolhardy and unlikely to lead to more awareness in that population of what AS does and is working to do. But it's well above my pay grade.  Then again, if I were paranoid, like, say someone who could write this, "AS is in survival mode and it will swat down or swallow anyone or anything that threatens it," I might think it was up to something and intends to "swallow" the NAA.

    Good thing you're not an actual organization, Age of Autism. Shew. Or you might be next.


    What a horribly written article!

    The Institute of Medicine is a known vaccine industry promoter. To take their study as peer reveiwed sceince is absurd. Have them release the Safety Datalink data that was used in the 2000 Verstraeten report before it was massaged and combined with bad data so the early correlation between nervous dissorders and vaccines disappeared. It's the best data we have and it is being hidden from the public.
    Also, if the vaccine industry wants to take credit for herd immunity, they need to take the blame for herd auto-immunity also. Injecting organ tissue in our bodies, used to grow the viral organisms, creates auto-immunity. Your body is tricked into attacking itself, auto-immune disorders are sky-rocketing! Asthma, Diabetes, Arthritis, Bowel issues. Purdue dog study showed it and if the vaccine industry would do ONE study on humans, which they havenever done, they would show it too.

    Gerhard Adam
    The Purdue dog study showed no such thing.

    From this study regarding Beagles:
    There was no increase of anti-thyroglobulin antibodies in the vaccinated animals, or other evidence of thyroid dysfunction.

    We did not find any evidence of autoimmune disease in the vaccinated dogs, but the study was terminated when the dogs were 22 weeks of age, well before autoimmune diseases usually become clinically apparent.  It is likely that genetic and environmental factors will trigger the onset of clinical autoimmune disease in a small percentage of the animals that develop autoantibodies.

    In the dog, certain autoimmune diseases occur more frequently in particular breeds of dogs, indicating genetically determined susceptibility (Dodds, 1983; Happ, 1995). There is abundant evidence from studies in rodents and human beings that the magnitude of the antibody response and the susceptibility to autoimmune disease are in part genetically determined (Schwartz, 1993). It is likely that genetic factors also determine the susceptibility to vaccine-induced autoimmunity.

    As in two previous studies we conducted, we confirmed that vaccinated dogs when compared with non-vaccinated dogs have a higher concentration of antibodies in their serum directed against bovine proteins such as thyroglobulin and fibronectin.  These antibodies are probably produced in response to contaminants from fetal calf serum commonly used to make canine vaccines.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Okay, so it didn't create a thyroid disorder. I'm not claiming it does. Try Fluoride it will really screw up your thyroid.

    I'm pretty sure the other evidence you state works in favor of my arguement. They didnt investigate the results to the point where auto-immune disorders develop? Really? End the trial so you don't see the result? That's your evidence? I posted the final conclusion of the Purdue dog Study on a comment below. I guess you didn't read that far.

    What I am claiming from your comment below:
    I agree aquired immunity can be acheived through vaccination. Vaccinate with a virus and the body will develop resistance to that virus called aquired immunity. Vaccinate with a similar tissue cell of the existing body and the body will develop resistance to that tissue cell called acquired auto-immunity. Pretty simple to verify if the right human study is performed. Any of you at Science 2.0 up for it?

    Gerhard Adam
    I guess you didn't read that far.
    Oh, I read that far, but I guess I wasn't impressed with bovine causes in canines (due to vaccine impurities).
    They didnt investigate the results to the point where auto-immune disorders develop? Really? End the trial so you don't see the result?
    Oh please stop your stupid rants.  The explanation was also offered in the paper.
    For practical and economic reasons, only a small number of dogs can be followed in an experimental study, and clinical autoimmune disease may, therefore, never be observed. The principal value of an experimental study is that it enables us to determine the frequency of autoantibody responses and the mechanism(s) that cause vaccines to induce autoantibodies.
    The problem here is that there is no study that would ever satisfy you, so why pretend otherwise.  You persist in believing in conspiracies, and that's all you'll ever see.  You choose to derive a meaning where none exists and draw spurious conclusions that are unwarranted. 
    Any of you at Science 2.0 up for it?
    That is is so typical.  You come on, claiming that you have answers that no one else has.  You claim that everyone is engaged in conspiring to keep the truth secret, and you claim that evidence to support you exists.  However ... then you want everyone else to do the work for you.  The simple reality is that you have no evidence for any of your allegations. 

    Even if the Purdue dog study supported every one of your claims, you still have demonstrated nothing, because the dogs were NOT immunized with vaccines given to humans, and the method of production didn't replicate that of human vaccines.  In short, you've got a whole lot of nothing.

    Once again:
    These are present in almost all vaccines as residual components of the cell culture necessary to generate vaccine viruses and may purposely be added to the vaccine as a stabilizer. In the presence of an adjuvant, these bovine products stimulate a strong immune response and induce antibodies that cross-react with conserved canine antigens. Thus, the strong response to fibronectin in the vaccinated dogs is most likely the result of the injection of bovine fibronectin contaminants in the vaccine.
    You still haven't identified any specific claims that you're making.  Is this just a general rant about how the pharmaceuticals, medicine, and science are all conspiring to kill you?  Or is it more specific than that?  Yeah, I get that you've lumped every auto-immune disorder together into a big pile so that you can play the blame game, but what is the scientific basis for this claim beyond some conclusions that you've drawn yourself?  Where are the studies linking lupus to vaccinations?  How about asthma?   Perhaps arthritis?  Diabetes?

    Perhaps in one post you can rewrite all of medicine?
    Mundus vult decipi
    It seems that few journalists even read the full report, opting instead to glance at a press release.
    From page 541 of the review: "This report is not intended to answer the question 'Are vaccines safe?' The committee was not charged with answering that question.'"

    The Associated Press, in their coverage of the report listed 14 side effects including:

    * Fever-triggered seizures from the measles-mumps-rubella, or MMR, vaccine.

    * MMR also can cause a rare form of brain inflammation in some people with immune problems.

    * The varicella vaccine against chickenpox sometimes triggers that viral infection, resulting in widespread chickenpox or a painful relative called shingles. It also occasionally can lead to pneumonia, hepatitis or meningitis.

    * Six vaccines — MMR and the chickenpox, hepatitis B, meningococcal and tetanus-containing vaccines — can cause severe allergic reactions known as anaphylaxis.

    * Vaccines in general sometimes trigger fainting or a type of shoulder inflammation.

    * There's suggestive evidence but not proof of a few other side effects, including anaphylaxis from the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine and short-term joint pain in some women and children from the MMR vaccine.

    * That doesn't mean there aren't other side effects — the review couldn't find enough evidence to decide about more than 100 other possibilities. Some vaccines are just too new to link to something really rare. Another example: Flu shots have long come with a caution about rare, paralyzing Guillain-Barre syndrome, but Clayton said research hasn't settled if that's a coincidence since the disorder is more common during the winter.

    Not to mention the fatal conflicts of interest at the Institute of Medicine with its ties to the vaccine industry and the military as reported in today's NaturalNews article.

    Wow! Vaccines contain "organ tissue" now--that's amazing! Or perhaps that claim (hint: organ and tissue both have specific definitions) is a clear signal that the authors comments are made from a position of profound ignorance.

    True, organs are made of tissue. Vaccines are grown in aborted lung tissue cells, monkey kidney tissue cells, bovine caseine cells, etc (not to metion all the viruses these cell lines contain - google SV40 found in cancer cells) Are you claiming that these tissue cells are not injected into our bodies without clear understanding or testing of the outcomes? Or are you trying to prove auto-immunity is not a result of vaccines by your knowledge of biological terms?

    Gerhard Adam
    Are you claiming that these tissue cells are not injected into our bodies without clear understanding or testing of the outcomes?
    What claim are you making?  Do you have a scientific basis (besides Google?)?  What are you alleging is happening?  If you're simply "throwing out some ideas" to speculate about, then your question is no more meaningful than the "when did you stop being your wife" type question.

    Comments like "clear understanding" and "testing of the outcomes" are loaded terms that you are simply abusing.  Should we not treat cancer because we don't have a "clear understanding"? 

    In addition, your "testing of outcomes" statement is also disingenuous, since you must certainly realize that with nearly 7 billion people on the planet, that not every condition can be accounted for.  Therefore when something is tested, it still carries a probability of encountering some circumstance (environmental, genetic, etc.) for which it cannot have been tested.  So you'd better get a reality check, because if you think that life comes with a guarantee, then perhaps you need to get your money back.
    Mundus vult decipi
    "Are you claiming that these tissue cells are not injected into our bodies without clear understanding or testing of the outcomes?"


    Please cite a peer-reviewed publication in which "tissue cells" are stated to be injected in pediatric vaccines. Then prove to yourself that you don't understand this subject by making yourself a cup of coffee and looking to see if the beans ended up in your cup.

    I think that when people are this obstinate, it's a sure sign that their claims are a red herring. My mind returns to the motivation for Wakefield to discredit the MMR in the first place: to sell his own measles vaccine.

    But, I wanted to note something that I think is important:

    Anecdotes are not evidence.

    This may seem nit-picky, but this is not an accurate statement. The now-familiar saying "The plural of 'anecdote' is not evidence" is actually a misquote. The original statement was missing the 'not'.

    The problem with anecdotal evidence is not the fact that it is anecdotal, but how it is often used. For example, if someone claims that X does not exist (e.g., "All dogs have four legs.") and a story demonstrates that it does ("I met a dog named Tripod who had only three legs."), then the story is indeed evidence. However, a single story has a sample size of one, is a casual (not systematic) observation, lacks appropriate comparison, tells us nothing about prevalence or proportions, etc. Conclusions are prone to nearly every human bias, especially post-hoc and confirmation thinking. Sets of stories may increase the sample size, but that does nothing for the myriad of other problems. When people make claims about causal relationships, anecdotes do very little (if anything) to support them.

    I think it is important to understand that the 'gold standards' for evidence vary with type of claim being made, which is what makes biological and social sciences so difficult and probably why people will not accept evidence such as the pile of studies which clearly show that vaccines do NOT cause autism. People look for a perfect answer in one study and it rarely works that way.

    Anecdotal conclusion from the Purdue Dog Study:
    "In conclusion, we have demonstrated that vaccination of dogs using a routine protocol and commonly used vaccines, induces autoantibodies. The autoantibody response appears to be antigen driven, probably directed against bovine antigens that contaminate vaccines as a result of the cell culture process and/or as stabilizers. The pathogenic significance of these autoantibodies has not yet been determined."

    The significance has yet to be determined? Are you kidding me? Why? Because science will never admit that their grand experiment with our immune system, although responsible for saving us from diseases that the vast majority of people fully recover from (yes, polio too - 95% of unvaccinated people exposed to polio never exhibit symptoms, 99% aren't paralyzed) this experiment will have created as much and probably more disease in terms of auto-immune disorders and cancer than it ever prevented. Look around you at all the anecdotes dying from SV40 cancer, lupus, diabetes, asthma, arthritis, intestinal disorders, MS, etc. who else is screwing around with our immune systems other than science?

    more anecdotes: Mercury poisoning has the same symptoms as Autism; Injecting aborted baby lung cells into your body will cause lung issues; Injecting monkey kidney cells and monkey viruses into your body causes cancer and organ auto-immunity; Injecting squalene into your body cause connective tissue disorders/arthritis; Injecting MSG into rats, contributes to them being fat and diabetic; Ignoring the damage vaccines has caused is the huge scientific 5,000,000 pound gorilla in the lab

    Gerhard Adam
    Look around you at all the anecdotes dying from SV40 cancer, lupus, diabetes, asthma, arthritis, intestinal disorders, MS, etc. who else is screwing around with our immune systems other than science?
    Sounds like you need to take your hysteria and have a serious talk with your doctor.
    Are you kidding me?
    Apparently there's no need to scientific studies since you've clearly got the answer.  It must be wonderful to possess so much knowledge, but difficult because of all the conspiratorial forces aligned against you and your message.

    You appear to be clueless regarding the difference between the dogs in the study (and what was being studied) and humans.  You're so oriented towards shouting a hysterical message, that you haven't bothered to actually consider the data, nor what was being said.

    Unfortunately, you're also the same person that would be screaming about how "science" isn't doing anything to help you if polio, measles, and mumps were still rampant.

    NOTE:  You might also want to look up what "anecdote" means.
    Mundus vult decipi
    I use the term anecdote satirically in response to the comments above, and I am aware of its meaning and use.

    Try this one:
    If brains are the disease, you are the anecdote.

    Seriously, I have heard nothing from you scientists/academics but name calling, you're not smart enough to understand, and your message is hysterical.

    Gerhard Adam
    Ahhh ... now we get to the heart of the matter.  Quotes like "you scientists" and "you're not smart enough", tell me all I need to know. 

    You hear nothing from scientists because you choose to remain deaf to data.  You're one of those people that thinks they know everything and that the whole world is either stupid or greedy.  It is never considered that YOU might be the one that is wrong.  Instead, you're prepared to paint the entire world as being against you. 

    You claim that you want to find the truth, but you aren't prepared to engage in the pursuit of it.  Legitimate claims should present plausible data.  Instead you begin by leveling accusations.  Quite frankly, you're lucky that you aren't simply being blown off as an idiot, because that's typically the only thing such accusations warrant.

    Mundus vult decipi
    I'm sorry, I guess I confused you.

    I said YOUR responses have been nothing but "name calling" and "you're not smart enought to understand" and "your message is hysterical". I think your last response is confirmation of this.

    Gerhard Adam
    Of course ... must be me.  I did notice that you still haven't actually provided any data.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Gerhard Adam
    I use the term anecdote satirically in response to the comments above, and I am aware of its meaning and use.
    Of course .... how silly of me to fail to recognize that you were interested in seriously pursuing an issue by the use of satire.

    Perhaps the next time you make a claim, we can exchange jokes instead of links.
    Mundus vult decipi
    If brains are the disease, you are the anecdote.

    Really? If this is supposed to be a joke, it's not funny. That leaves me thinking that you really don't know the difference between "anecdote" and "antidote".

    Seriously, I have heard nothing from you scientists/academics but name calling, you're not smart enough to understand, and your message is hysterical.

    "You do not appear to understand" is not the same thing as "You are not smart enough to understand". Frankly, I'm quite certain that you have the intelligence. It's the will and open-mindedness that are probably lacking. Your comment is hysterical and it does demonstrate a lack of understanding of the issues. Studies are written for other scientists - people with a specific set of knowledge. They are not written with the layperson in mind. That's not an insult or academic elitism, but insisting that you know more than someone who has put in the time and work to learn the field is anti-intellectualism and it's destructive.

    Anecdote - an amusing illustration to reveal a more profound truth. Used in conjunction with a pun Anecdote/Antidote, the attempt is to evoke even more humor.

    "If Brains are the disease(literally:If Science be wrong), then Gerhard is an amusing, yet sad illustration revealing the profound ironic truth of how a scientist could be so blind to the obvious facts - It made me laugh at least.

    As for your elite status of special intelligence that is intellectually superior in understanding. It reminds me of what the early Catholic scientists must have uttered to folks like Galileo. You know, the Church of Science may the fastest growing religion in the world.

    Perhaps you did not read my comment thoroughly, or your dictionary, but this comment makes little sense.

    Dan Olmsted is becoming a bitter old man. After being fired from his job with the Moonies after no news outlet wanted his scribblings, he bet the farm on the idea that he alone knew the truth and that he was going to prove that vaccines cause autism. He said it was "the story of a lifetime". Forget all the world's governments (who, of course, want nothing more than to poison children), all the world's pediatricians, billions of bucks in research, all the special masters and judges, all of America's media - in fact everybody who knows anything about the matter - it would be Dan who, despite having no qualifications and having done almost no research of any kind, would prove them all wrong.

    What a sad excuse for a human being he is.

    Dyermaker needs no doctor. She needs to see Dara O'Briain and to 'gerrin the feckin' sack'!

    Nuff said, I think.

    could be a he... in which case HE needs to, etc!

    Don't you just love it when some arrogant asshats finds it necessary to write in great length telling us all what we can plainly read for ourselves? Narcissistic much? Thanks for the laugh at your expense!! So entertaining!!

    Dyermaker(yeah, great instrumental piece from Led Zeppelin and why do I think I have encountered you before/)

    ... Mercury poisoning has the same symptoms as Autism....

    I gave you the benefit of the doubt and checked. Your statement doesn't hold, the symptoms are very different. As to the mercury issue in general, I'd be more worried about mercury from many other sources, including coal fired power stations and industrial processes, than the mercury in vaccines; thimerasol being discarded a long time ago.

    Regarding MMR. Wakefield was dragged over the coals before he performed procedures without proper authorisation. He was using children as guinea pigs so stuff him. I still have concerns about simultaneously creating 3 immune responses and I do believe that in a very small number of cases mercury exposure PLUS this stimulation could be the culprit.

    The autoantibody response: We are all creating self-antigens. This may appear counter-intuitive but only if one still clings to the self-nonself model of immunology as the complete explanation. It isn't, in fact autoimmunity is a constitutive and vital process that possibly plays a fundamental role in killing off nascent tumours; of which most of us have a few lurking in our bodies. So with any general immunological stimulation it is not that surprising to see a rise in autoantibodies. The researchers who wrote the referenced paper are probably aware of this autoantibody issue, it appears you are not. Their hesitation in articulating an explanation for this increase in autoantibodies presents a necessary prudence. This issue does require further investigation but that this issue is not going to be resolved on a blog it will be resolved in a lab.

    I'm not sure what studies you are reviewing, but the symptoms of autism are strikingly similar to general mercury poisoning. And yes, all mercury poisoning is bad. By the way - when you go get your flu shot, it contains thimerosal, so yes they still use it.

    As for self antigen autoimmunity, I agree this is a natural process.
    It is a whole different process though when it is mainlined into your system with a needle. Extraordinary introduction of antigens that create auto-immunity circumvents natural barriers that can mitigate the body's response to these antigens. Vaccines with adjuvants, alum, etc, which includes most of them, actually work to heighten the immune response and therefore heighten the auto-immune response.

    As for the Purdue Dog Study, not only did they find an increased autoimmune response, but they theorized that the bovine casein was the culprit and that it was creating an autoimmune response to the connective tissue of the dogs and was similar to conditions in humans with arthritis and other tissue disorders. They even suggest that vaccines should be made without these animal products. Yet they still conclude that the significance of this finding is undetermined.

    I will agree with you on one thing. Not enough study is done to determine how this is affecting humans, especially our children. We have been vaccinating for over 100 years taking credit for the apparent victory over disease while completely missing how we might be creating a legacy of crippling effects. Please push your community to research this. Open the Safety Datalink data that the CDC is hiding and let's find some answers.