October 24, 2007

Does Autism Speaks Support Autism Eugenics?

Whose Planet is it Anyway has called our attention to some truly upsetting information about Autism Speaks associations.

I have repeatedly mentioned that if AS is successful in their autism gene search before treatment options are fully developed, that the "Cure" for autism will become the same as the "Cure" for Downs Syndrome. Abortion.

I have always assumed that AS did not actually intend this to be the outcome from the beginning, but I may have been naive.

Autism Speaks' Eugenic Agenda

It's not really news that the ultimate goal of Autism Speaks is to wipe out the entire autistic population through prenatal testing and eugenic abortion. After all, one of their leading researchers, Dr. Joseph Buxbaum of the Autism Genome Project, frankly admitted as much in an interview almost three years ago, before NAAR merged into Autism Speaks.

But for the most part, they've managed to put up a somewhat plausible pretense of being a mainstream charity that just wants to prevent suffering, and so forth. Most of the material on their website is carefully designed to keep the public unaware of their close ideological affinity with the white supremacist agenda of creating a master race through eugenics. A casual reader might not notice a page featuring the views of Dr. James Watson, with whom Bob and Suzanne Wright had a friendly chat regarding autism genetic research at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory:


Watson, a molecular biologist, is famous for his genetic research discoveries. He is equally infamous for his long history of advocating white supremacy and eugenic extermination of people with neurological differences, which he characterizes as curing stupidity.

On October 18th, Watson was suspended from his position as the Chancellor of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory after making racist comments during an interview with a British newspaper that included these remarks about blacks: "all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours – whereas all the testing says not really" and "people who have to deal with black employees find this not true."

It's frankly impossible that Autism Speaks, in making the decision to feature their association with Watson on their website, could have been unaware of his bigoted extremist agenda. His racist attitudes have been well known for many years.

October 22, 2007

Local Chapter of Autism Speaks Splits From Autism Speaks

Apparently the good folks of Burlington, VT have wised up to the fact that Autism Speaks sucks the money out of local communities and does not give back.

Local autism group splits off from national nonprofit
October 21, 2007

BURLINGTON – The state chapter of a national autism group has spun off to form a separate nonprofit.

The Burlington-based Autism Support Daily was formed by a group of advocates who split off from the national Autism Speaks last year.

The schism was over money.

Now there will be two autism fundraising walks in Vermont. Autism Support Daily held its event on Sept. 29; Autism Speaks, which had its own walk scheduled for Sept. 30 postponed its fund-raiser because of the timing conflict. It plans to hold a similar event in early summer.

That's because the Burlington group questions how locally raised funds were used by the national organization. Autism Support Daily believes money raised in Vermont should remain in Vermont.

The local organization also questions how much of that money should be devoted to medical research, and how much should be made available to help local families with autistic children cope with living and medical expenses.

The chance that a child, particularly a boy, will develop autism is now about one in 160, records note. NIH officials define autism as a complex brain disorder.

"Autism involves communication and social difficulties, as well as repetitive behavior or narrow interests. Autism is often grouped with similar disorders, all of which may be referred collectively as autism spectrum disorders. The underlying causes of ASD are unclear. Currently there is no cure for the disorders and treatments are limited," an online report states.

New York-based Autism Speaks in its first Vermont walk last year raised about $50,000, according to Erica Jacobson, an event planner and fund raiser for one of the New England Autism Speaks chapters. Jacobson, who earned a bachelor's degree in sociology from Northeastern University, has spent her career working for nonprofit groups.

She is relatively new to the national group's staff. She said she walked alongside Autism Support Daily members last year. One of Jacobson's tasks has been to rebuild staff at the New England regional office. Jacobson said that she is completely supportive of Burlington-based Autism Support Daily.

"As a parent, you want what's best for your child," she said.

For members of Autism Support Daily, that means giving out all of the money raised for an awareness walk in Vermont to local families in need. The group's Web site, www.autismsupportdaily.com, gave its first financial award at the close of December 2006.

The first "wish it could be more" grant totaled $1,350. Three additional grant awards were given out for $10,906, $2,600 and $2574, totaling $16,080.

According to the group's Web site, funds are given "to families of children and young adults with autism to help them offset the huge expenses they incur on a daily basis in order to get necessities, prescriptions, supplements, and many other items that place a huge financial burden on families."

The names of the 10 leaders of Autism Support Daily, including Angela Timpone and an honorary member, comprise the group's executive list. The all-volunteer organization, recently received its 501(C) 3 nonprofit charitable status, said Timpone.

That's a major difference between Autism Speaks and Autism Support Daily, she said. There is no payroll for any of the staff of the Vermont group, Timpone said.

"Think of this as a grassroots effort," said Timpone. "I think we're completely different."

Autism Speaks Inc., which was formed in February 2005, is the largest national autism group. Its focus, according to its Web site, is on medical research. Its total public support revenue for 2006 was $33.3 million. Its mission is to "aggressively fund global biomedical research into the causes prevention, treatments and cure for autism," according to the Web site, autismspeaks.org. Autism Speaks has 26 board members, plus 20 upper management employees at its offices based in Manhattan in addition to employees working in states across the country, according to its 990 form filed with the IRS in 2006.

Seventy-five percent of the money raised during a state walk goes toward funding research, research dollars overseen by the national group, Jacobson said. The other 25 percent goes toward running the organization, she said.

"It's not a competition. We're all here for the same cause," said Jacobson. "We're here for research and we're here for awareness."

Timpone agrees that more research is needed. "Why is this? We're in the midst of an epidemic and more research does need to be done but at the same time we need the organizations to help support the family who is here now with autism."

"We are not in any way saying we don't support Autism Speaks," said Timpone during a telephone interview. "There needs to be an added component to that. There's families in Vermont that really need help."

Jacobson said she received an e-mail from the local group, indicating it would go its own way. If she had known earlier on of the Vermont group's concerns about where the money raised should be directed, she would have made an effort to deal with Timpone's concerns, said Jacobson.

"We are also dedicated to helping families," said Jacobson. Whether a parent or adult supports the goals Autism Support Daily or Autism Speaks, there is commonality among the two groups, she says. "Because at the end of the day, it's just people supporting autism research and awareness, whether they're directly affected or not," said Jacobson.

October 18, 2007

NAA: Sad News From Our Friends At BrainChild

From the National Autism Association:

Michael Lang, founder of BrainChild Nutritionals, died on Tuesday, October 16, 2007, after a brief but heroic fight with Pancreatic Cancer. Michael passed at home, surrounded by those who loved him. Michael was a brilliant, stubborn, generous, incredibly good and gentle man, who made great strides toward his great hope for curing autism.

Michael created vitamin and mineral supplements to help his own children, and then extended that gift to thousands of children, by founding BrainChild Nutritionals, to make exceptional liquid supplements for kids on the autistic spectrum. Michael used his last bit of energy to make a presentation to the DAN! Doctors' Think Tank from the hospital less than a week before he died. He was very excited about this presentation showing new information he'd recently gathered using his natural chelation program and wanted others to help carry on his work.

BrainChild Nutritionals will continue as it always has, in Michael's memory. Thank you all for being part of our extended family. We know that many of you loved Michael as well, and that he helped many of your children. Please know that Michael didn't suffer, and that his work will continue.

A fund is being set up to help Michael's children. A link with details on how to donate to this fund will be on the BrainChild website within the next couple days.

Michael Lang has been a great friend to NAA with his long time support of our Helping Hand Project, and to many of us here on a personal level. He was the ultimate "nice guy". He was genuinely caring, thoughtful and kind. We send our love and sympathy to Michael's children, family and everyone at Brainchild Nutritionals. He will be sadly missed.

October 13, 2007

Autism: The Non Urgent Crisis.

I thought Anne Dachel's response to this piece deserved a good read.

Autism Center Helping Families Cope With Disorder
WISC, WI - Oct 11, 2007

The story on the new autism school called Common Threads gave us some disturbing information. We're told that one in every
150 children in the U.S. now has autism. WISC-TV calls autism "a crisis" yet they can give us no reason why so many children
are affected with this devastating disorder.

Associate Dean of Research for the Waisman Center Dr. Susan Ellis Weismerm tells us that "in the past 10 years, there has been
an explosion in autism research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and much of it is being done at the Waisman Center.

Actually, there's been an explosion in the number of children with autism from one in 10,000 in the 1970s to one in every one
150 kids today, including one in every 94 boys, but the Waisman Center has long told us that there is no "crisis" or any

increase in autism.

A Spectrum of Disputes - New York Times

What's happened according to the Waisman Center is "better diagnosing" by doctors and an expanded spectrum of autism disorders. In other words, we've always had so many kids with autism, they were mislabeled. The problem with that claim is that no one asks people who make that claim to prove it. Why isn't there even one study that can find the misdiagnosed/undiagnosed adults with autism at a rate of one in 150?

When we talk about autism, we're talking about kids with autism. The rate of one in 150 came from studies of eight year olds, not eighty year olds. That simple fact should be scaring us all. Most adults never knew anyone labeled autistic or who displayed autistic behavior when they were young, but anywhere you bring up the subject, people start talking about kids they know with autism.

Research has shown that eighty percent of Americans with autism are under the age of eighteen. That means that within the next five to ten years these autistic kids will be adults dependent on the taxpayers for their support and care. Imagine what it will be like when one in every 150 eighteen year olds isn't going to work, or to school, or into the military, but applying for Social Security Disability for life with autism.

Right now the impact of the autism epidemic is being felt in our schools. Boston Globe reporter Carey Goldberg for example, wrote the story on July 5th, With rise in autism, programs strained - The Boston Globe in which we were told, "Statewide, the number of schoolchildren diagnosed with autism has nearly doubled over the last five years, from 4,080 to 7,521, according to soon-to-be-published data from the Department of Education."

In Massachusetts, one in every 130 kids has autism officially. Goldberg wrote, "Autism programs are faced with enormous needs and no one feels like we have enough programs to meet the up-and-coming numbers of children," said Rita Gardner, executive director of Melmark, in Andover
, which serves children in its school, in their homes, and in public schools. "I would argue that this is one of our biggest public health crises in this country.

"A few years ago, when state public health authorities began providing autism services to children under 3, they expected about 500 children to enroll. At last count, they are serving more than 1,100.

Goldberg also reported that educating all these disabled children costs the state over $3 million dollars a year. Does anyone seriously think that this is happening merely because doctors are better at diagnosing? The same autistic children who are bankrupting school districts and on endless waiting lists for services will be overwhelming Social Security in the next five to ten year.

These are the current statistics on autism in the U.S. based on Dept. Education figures. http://www.vaprojec t.org/autismasds tatistics. html The explosion in the autism rate is clearly evident. Now imagine a similar increase in the number of young adults applying for Social Security Disability. This is also a double blow. These disabled young people are meant to be the replacement work force to help support the retiring post WWII generation. Not only won't they be paying into Social Security, they'll be living off of it for the rest of their long lives.

Findings by Michael Ganz at Harvard makes a chilling prediction of the future cost to our society as more and more autistic kids become autistic adults. His findings are felt by others to be a gross underestimate of the eventual autism price tag.Autism Has High Costs to U.S. Society, press release of Tuesday ....
It can cost about $3.2 million to take care of an autistic person over his or her lifetime. Caring for all people with autism over their lifetimes costs an estimated $35 billion per year.

See other figures from Lifespire: http://www.a-champ.org/documents/Lifespire%20Costs%20rev.2-23-06.ppt.pdf

Lifespire puts lifetime cost for a single autistic person at $10.125 million.

For more information on the cost of autism, contact Robert Krakow <rkrakow@earthlink.net>

At the height of the polio epidemic in the 1950s, one in 3,000 Americans was affected. That was a national crisis. A major effort was made to address it. Autism affects far more people, but no one seems concerned about what's going to happen to all these children. The most important comparison to be made with polio is the fact that most of the victims of polio recovered and went on to lead productive lives. The same won't be said about the victims of the autism epidemic. They will need support and care for life.

The words of Laura Bono of the National Autism Association are a grim forecast for the future: "As those children reach adulthood, the U.S. is ill-equipped to care for them. Not only do we not have enough services for adults now, the light at the end of the tunnel is a train. Frankly, we don't know what we're going to do."

Anne McElroy Dachel
Chippewa Falls, WI USA

October 7, 2007

UK: GMC Advises UK Docs To Commit Fraud over MMR

The GMC is Britain's medical ethics council that is currently trying Andrew Wakefield over alleged ethics violations in regards to his research on the MMR.

Apparently they are encouraging doctors to remove children who refuse the MMR from their list of patients to fraudulently raise the MMR uptake statistics.

The docs can then get payments for seeming to have met the governments MMR uptake goals.

So the GMC, whose job it is to maintain ethical medical practices, is apparently giving the nod for docs to commit fraud to prop up vaccine uptake stats and to get cash payments.

I am sure that Wakefield will get a fair hearing.

From UK Lawyer, Clifford Miller:

GMC Advises UK Docs To Commit Fraud over MMR

Is medicine institutionally corrupt? Here you will see the UK's General Medical Council advising UK medical doctors how to commit fraud on the UK's National Health Service for personal financial gain.

The GMC's role is to protect, promote and maintain the health and safety of the public by ensuring proper standards in the practice of medicine by medical doctors. This includes prosecuting UK medical doctors when their behaviour may bring the medical profession into disrepute. Dishonesty, financial impropriety and fraud fall within its purview. This link [1] provides an example of a decided case from its website.

The GMC is a statutory body independent (allegedly) of the NHS and of Government, with responsibility for maintaining the medical register for the United Kingdom. The GMC has statutory powers under the Medical Act 1983 to take action where there are concerns about the fitness to practise of a registered medical practitioner. Where the GMC finds that a doctor is not fit to practise, it has powers to erase that doctor's name from the medical register, to suspend the doctor from the register or to place conditions on the doctor's practice. These restrictions apply to practice in any sector of employment in any part of the UK. [2]

In the UK if doctors meet target levels for numbers of MMR and other vaccinations administered they can claim bonus payments for doing so. If they fail, they cannot claim those payments. One way of claiming the payments is to make a false return.

So how can it be that the GMC advises doctors on how to commit fraud? The GMC pose the question "Can GPs remove some children from their lists, temporarily, for the purpose of calculating the MMR target payment?" Here you will see that its currently available advice is to the effect that "it's OK provided you have patient consent" [3], [4]. It seems it also happens to be OK if it helps to increase the MMR uptake figures. The advice does not appear to be offered for other vaccinations.

And notice how they fail to make any mention of the financial and moral impropriety of doing so when they answer the question they pose like this:-

"This must not be done without the parents' agreement. Parents must be given a full explanation of what was proposed and why, their child's rights as an NHS patient, and the implications for their child's future care. Doctors working within the NHS must treat all patients entitled to NHS services on an equal footing. So temporarily removing a child from a GPs list must not adversely affect their care, for example in accessing secondary care and out-of-hours services, or in providing relevant information to ensure continuity of care and allow effective working with other agencies. Doctors must act honestly in their financial dealings. So GPs must ensure that any arrangement to remove a child from their list and re-register them for ‘immediately necessary treatment', or on some other basis, would be in line with their contractual obligations to the NHS."

Notice that provided the doctor does what the GMC advises and ensures "that any arrangement ... would be in line with their contractual obligations to the NHS" it is fine as "Doctors must act honestly in their financial dealings". Am I missing something or is this starting to look like we need the "men in white coats" to take away the men in white coats?

Not only that but the GMC advice is that if the evidence is available this is not contrary to GMC guidance on good medical practice:-

"Are temporary removals from a GPs list acceptable to the GMC? In the absence of evidence that ‘temporary removals' satisfy the concerns outlined at Q5, we cannot give any reassurance that such arrangements would be seen as consistent with our guidance on good practice."

GMC advice to UK doctors is that doctors "must not ask for or accept any inducement, gift or hospitality which may affect or be seen to affect the way you prescribe for, treat or refer patients." [7] But it seems the GMC do not mind when it comes to MMR, even where the inducement is so strong it encourages fraud on the NHS. But then, the GMC does not seem to mind about that either.

So now you know. If it concerns getting MMR uptake up, fraud is fine. But you had better make sure you implicate the parents and what better way to do that than to pressure them into agreeing their children become temporary patients possibly for emergency treatment only or else be dumped from the patient roster completely. Naturally, I am not saying that is happening nor am I saying the GMC advice is taken to suggest that be done - as it does not, but it could encourage that kind of behaviour. As a lawyer advising pro bono I have direct experience of patients being removed from an NHS doctor's roster after objections to childhood vaccinations.

The GMC has an agreement on cooperating and coordinating with the NHS Counter Fraud service [5]. And "GMC Today" newsletter carried a story ironically titled "Is the NHS immune to fraud?" about reducing and reporting fraud in the National Health Service [6]. The story gives a number to call the confidential NHS Fraud and Corruption Reporting Line and an email address too. It reports:-

"If you have a concern about a fraud taking place within the NHS, please call the confidential NHS Fraud and Corruption Reporting Line on 0800 028 40 60. All calls will be dealt with by trained staff and professionally investigated. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8 am–6 pm. You can also email us at nhsfraud@cfsms.nhs.uk at any time."

I haven't got the heart to tell 'em. Have you?

[1] http://www.gmc-uk.org/concerns/hearings_and_decisions/ftp/ftp_panel_islam_20061013.asp

[2] http://www.gmc-uk.org/about/partners/national_health_service_counter_fraud_service.asp

[3] http://www.gmc-uk.org/guidance/current/library/targeting_preventative_measures.asp

[4] http://www.gmc-uk.org/guidance/archive/Target_payments_for_preventative_health_measures_2003.pdf

[5] Memorandum of Understanding between the General Medical Council (GMC) and the National Health Service Counter Fraud Service (NHS CFS)

[6] Is the NHS immune to fraud? - GMC Today - Oct 2005

[6] Paragraph 74 Good Medical Practice

October 4, 2007

New Biomedical Support Group in Rockport Maine

From Laura Plorude of the Portland Maine biomed support group:

The new midcoast support group will be starting the 27th of October and will always be the last Saturday of the month. It will be held from 10 to 12 at Namaste Institute in Rockport.

This is on Beech Hill road across from Hobokin garden on Rt 1. It is about one mile up that road on the left. A little black sign is at the foot of the drive. (for the local MOMs)

The directions are also at Namasteinstitute.com

October 2, 2007

Dan Olmsted Is Back

... and calling out the CDC's shenanigans on The Rescue Post.

If you have not already made The Rescue Post a part of your regular blog reading, time to grab the feed.