Dr. Paul Offit: Fox in a Henhouse, the ACIP Years (1998-2003)
Shauna Layton on Autism One Radio

NYT Mollycoddles Dr. Offit

Hide under desk From The New York Times (HERE): A new book defending vaccines, written by a doctor infuriated at the claim that they cause autism, is galvanizing a backlash against the antivaccine movement in the United States.

But there will be no book tour for the doctor, Paul A. Offit, author of “Autism’s False Prophets.” He has had too many death threats.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to get the NYT to mention your book? Let alone a book that came out over five months ago. Why the mollycoddling of Dr. Offit and his book? Why now?

We know vaccines are the future of pharmaceutical revenue, as they are not subject to patent protection (or the loss thereof) and once a government (or the AAP) adds a vaccine to the pediatric schedule sales explode. NJ is mandating the flu shot for babies and toddlers.  Texas is sniffing around mandating the flu shot too. 

Parents have genuine concerns about the safety of our pediatric vaccine schedule. Many medical doctors disagree with the Paul Offits and Nancy Snydermans of the world, including the very mainstream Dr. Bob Sears.


Blatant double standard

Chelation therapy good for some but not for all By Cynthia A. Janak


Dr. Jay Keys are you still here reading, or have you disappeared with your own particular pediatrician brand of double standard? Isn't it a tad disappointing that they come here breathing fire and then disappear. Where's that Dr. Carrie of old? She went pretty fast too didn't she?

Well, if nothing else, at the very least they are all very predictable.

Hilary Butler.

I too doubt Dr Offit's assertions (now and in the past) that his children have been threatened, he has had to install special security systems in his house, etc etc et... (does he also have armed guards at his hospital???)

BUT... let's just say...

Let's say... he is right.

And that his book tour was cancelled because, EVERY time he walks into any book shop now, parents get nasty and want to pin his shoulders to the carpet...

I agree with a poster below, that that's highly unlikely, since most parents with children on the autistic spectrum have trouble finding time to breathe, eat and sleep, so clocking Offit's chops isn't likely to be a sought after notch on the belt. For them, the more sought after notch on the belt, is to attempt to fix the problem.

BUT... if the problem of Dr Offit's chops being clocked in every--- single --- book shop is the reason for the tour cancellation, then isn't it time he actually THOUGHT about that?

These parents aren't gormless flat-earthers. Just maybe they are actually the Copernicus's of the world, the canaries in the mine, who are ignored, or worse...as history has written about often before, attacked by the "church" of patronising vested interests.

Finally, Offit says that when Salk created the injectable polio accine, Salk was treated like a hero, yet he's created a Rotavirus vaccine, and is treated like a criminal.

Yet again, this comment shows how shallow Dr Offit's digging into history is, and has been. By 1958, only 36% of USA had had 3 Salk shots (And that was in a medical article authored by Salk himself).

There was actually a huge groundswell against Salk, and the vaccine from 1955 onwards, with quite a few doctors at the forefront of that movement as well.

That he appears to know nothing, or little about that,or choses to ignore it, is in itself, worthy of careful note.

Julie Swenson

Sam's a dive-bomber...he swoops in with a weak arguement and leaves. I see this a lot on my other vaccine boards ;)


Good points Twyla and Julie. I think Sam is afraid to answer back- maybe we "misoverestimated" his ability to debate the issue.


From Offit's latest 'turd blossom'--
Clinical Infectious Diseases 2009;48:000–000

"Autism is not an immune-mediated disease. Unlike autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, there is no evidence of immune activation or inflammatory lesions
in the CNS of people with autism [38 citing IOM 2004 report]."

How a peer reviewed journal can let Offit continue to weave his web of lies is beyond understanding. Autism is not associated with immune dysfunction....wtf....oh it's only genetics and circuits??? Why doesn't Offit run off to the Cayman's and start spending some of that money$$ His time is a ticking before he's burning in hell for all eternity!


Not to over simplify but where does Paul Offit get the idea that parents raising children on the Spectrum have time to stalk and make death threats?
Heck we don't sleep.
If I'm going to do anything with my free time after IEPs, ordering compounding, researching anti-oxidants, tackling homework,
reading therapy evals, administering supplements, going across town for GFCF food - it's not going to be make a death threat on some buffoon like Paul Offit.
No I'm satisfied he will roast in hell.
That's enough for me.


Dear Mr. McNeil,

I am a parent to a severely affected child with an autism diagnosis. I am so tired of reading dribble like you have presented here and that the NYT has again promoted. It is sad that you personally did not interview real research people but instead relied on the soap opera version from Paul Offit.

Please google mitochondria, Hannah Poling, Bernadine Healey, mercury, aluminum,etc. and then interview some of the thousands of parents like myself who have dozens of abnormal labs that show the same thing --impaired immune and neurological systems, food allergies, mitochondria dysfunction, high and chronic viral titres, large amounts of mercury and aluminum, GI issues--reflux, chronic diarrhea, and inflammation.

This passage from Dr. Nancy Minshew-
"Autism, she said, is one of many diseases, like dyslexia, Elephant Man’s disease, tuberous sclerosis and schizophrenia, that are caused by genetic flaws but show no symptoms for years..."
will go down in history as one of the top 10 most unscientific and dumbest statements ever made by a medical professional.

It all would be laughable if children were not being hurt by it -- but they are. No one is buying the "vaccines don't hurt anyone" infomercial anymore nor are they buying this pathetic book.


There may be some good that will come of this one-sided article.

It was Gardiner Harris's similar NYT article, years back, regarding crazy desperate parents and autism that helped me see that the media was presenting a very biased story of this controversy. Instead of causing me to think the people I knew who thought vaccines were implicated as a cause of autism were crazy (as the writer apparently had hoped), it led me to start investigating further. And the more I investigated, the crazier I got. LOL

As more folks realize that the "crazies" in this controversy actually include doctors, nurses, chemists, toxicologists, neurologists, biologists, researchers, statisticians, public health experts, dentists, teachers, lawyers, investigative journalists and all manner of other well-educated thoughtful people, this strange tactic of calling folks who ask questions and have doubts and concerns about vaccine safety, "crazy," will fall completely apart.

Me thinks Offit dost protest too much. : )

Julie Swenson


Please help me out here: Is it your assertion that because herd immunity is so important to the ‘greater good’, that all children should be vaccinated? Or do you at least acknowledge that there are children who should never receive a single vaccination? Hence your need for herd immunity, which is supposed to be there to protect the vulnerable …like my child…like many of the children of folks like myself on AofA, who have immune-compromised children and babies, who got ‘too many, too soon’.

A well-nourished, healthy child living in a modern, sanitary society will overcome the rotavirus easily. And measles. And chicken pox…and any number of other ‘diseases’ we vaccinate for.

FYI, my son caught rotavirus, even after he was vaccinated against it. Hmm!!

Kirstin Boncher

Dr. Jon Poling, the father of Hannah Poling who is a neurologist who holds a PhD in biophysics said at a conference, "In medicine, determining the cause of a disease has to begin with an understanding of the underlying process of the disease itself." Dr. Offit might be an expert on vaccines (and their across the board safety for everyone everywhere), but he DEFINITELY isn't an expert on autism, nor does he have a clear understanding of the underlying disease process to make the claims he does about it's relation to autism.

Sham treatments?

"As Dr. Offit’s book details, numerous studies of thimerosal, measles virus and other alleged autism triggers in vaccines have been conducted, and hundreds of children with diagnoses of autism have undergone what he considers sham treatments and been “cured.”"

It is ludicrous for Offit to suggest that the work of DAN! doctors consists of sham treatments. I would like to see the ARI post a fitting reply to the Editor of this publication. A majority of the DAN! docs are MDs. Isn't there supposed to be a code of conduct regarding what you say about your colleagues, the people in your profession who are actually doing "real" work in improving the lives of kids on the spectrum - so that they do not keep having seizures, so that their GI tract improves, so that their oxidative stress is relieved, so that inflammation is controlled, so that mercury may be removed from their brains - so that they can go onto better health and become productive members of society? Sham treatments!!? !!

This coward hides behind closed doors preferring to talk only to an audience of his choice. He, time and again, refuses to be interviewed by journalists who might happen to express a point of view different from his own. He then falsely cites death threats as to the reason why he refuses to talk to people whose opinions differ from his own.

This man smacks of corruption, is morally reprehensible, and does not seem to have an iota of compassion for the children who have autism or their parents who are stressed beyond measure in caring for them. Death threats? Who has the time to make death threats, we are just trying to get by on a day to day basis. I for one, do not believe the death threats excuse. If I hated Offit that much I would wish him a jail cell and a very long life so that he can sit in solitary confinement and think of what he has done. Or, forget the jail cell. I would wish that he never ever gets any happiness or peace of mind. Death would be too easy for a scoundrel of his ilk.

sign lady

At least there's one crumb of truth in this stinking, knee-deep pile of propaganda. Amanda Peet shares her personal philosophy about healthy living!

"“Where I live in L.A.,” she said in a telephone interview, “there’s this child-rearing trend — only feed your kids organic food, detoxify your house. And there’s a lot of anticorporate fervor, anti-pharmaceutical company fervor.”

Bring on the pesticides! Slather ammonia on the kitchen floor! Celebrate corporate empowerment!

Oh, and has anyone noticed that articles containing the words "former playboy model" describing Jenny McCarthy always indicate a pro-pharma bias?

Well I don't think Amanda Peet is selling girl scout cookies here:


yeah, the whole term "vaccine deniers" makes no sense. I mean we don't deny that there are vaccines. We generally say that vaccines are used to excess and they seem to have a huge price to pay in terms of some of the insidious, and unstudied, long term side-effects for the human host. ON the other hand, there are vaccine-damage deniers, people such as Snyderman and Offit etc.


The more these clowns keep the vaccination issue in the limelight the better.
People discuss and research and find the truth.
I was never aware of the extent of the there was such a high risk of damage from vaccines until it was to late.
These pro-mercury clowns have no idea that everytime they speak they open up another can of worms and more people become better educated concerning the risks of vaccine damage.


"It is an offensive but effective shorthand that conveys instantly the message that a "denier" is so far from reality they are to be intellectually dismissed and scorned."

A denier is someone who holds fast to a position well past the point when the overwhelming weight of evidence shows just the opposite.


Twyla, excellent response to Sam's post. And I also have to say that when children in this country do have serious problems with rotavirus, as my daughter did, it may very well be because their immune systems are so terribly damaged from previous vaccines. I'd bet money on it. Funny, some of her doctors will acknowledge that kids with autism seem to have weakened immune systems, like it's just some quirky autism thing, but nobody makes the conncection that what caused the autism also caused the damaged immune system.


Another thought on the remarks of Minshew that "elephant man disease" and "schizophrenia" are delayed onset genetic ailments, like "autism". Well, heh.

Firstly, after almost one hundred years of genetic research and bombarding the problem with the "best minds" in science, no proof of schizophrenia's genetic origins have ever been proven. In fact, a broad NIMH study under then-director Loren Mosher in the 90's found that schizophrenia was most definitely environmental. The NY Times didn't report on those findings either. Schizophrenia research was first the territory of eugenicists like Franz Kallmann, a Nazi collaborator (who called for the forced sterilization of close family members of the mentally ill) whose bogus twin studies are still in medical texts: http://www.icspp.org/id12.html (see first article entitled "Schizophrenia: Medical students are taught it’s all in the genes, but are they hearing the whole story?" by Jonathan Leo, Ph.D.)

Minshew's assertions get better. The funny thing about "elephant man disease" (sic) if anything could be said to be funny about it is that no one really knows what Merrick had. Some said elephantitis, some said neurofibromatosis and some say Proteus syndrome or some combination. What's even more curious is that Proteus syndrome is thought perhaps to relate to something in chromosome 16-- mutations on which some have attempted to link to autism as well. The strange links continue-- Merrick's sister had myelitis and died of a seizure. Traverse myelitis, which involves demyelinization, can be caused by vaccination or infection:


Was what Merrick suffered from really genetic or did it involve susceptibility, perhaps mitochondrial weakness or "de novo" mutations related to environment? His condition may have been genetic but again, there's not proof enough for Minshew to make such an assertion out of hand.


All part and parcel of a new offensive (an offensive offensive, in my opinion) to paint parents as crazy. Again. CBS News website has an article headlined "Researchers Focus on Vaccine Deniers", in reference to the CDC folk headed to Ashland Oregon to find out why so many people don't get vaccinated. The use of the word "Denier" is very deliberate, clearly a talking point that is being distributed and pushed on the media by someone for the purpose of equating us with Holocaust deniers. It is an offensive but effective shorthand that conveys instantly the message that a "denier" is so far from reality they are to be intellectually dismissed and scorned. This is a deliberate talking point -- the question is, where is it coming from? And why now?

Anne Dachel


I hit the link knowing that it would be garbage. And it was.
I've written to McNeil before...he could care less about our claims. I've read Offit's book; it's nothing new. Same tired old mantra: VACCINES ARE SAFE, VACCINES SAVE LIVES. NO EVIDENCE OF HARM; AUTISM HASN'T REALLY INCREASED. EVERYONE AT THE CDC/APP ETC. IS HONEST AND EARNEST.

This is what the NY TIMES and Donald McNeil consider "fair and balanced":
On one side is...
Dr. Paul Offit,
Dr. Gregory A. Poland, "chief of vaccine research at the Mayo Clinic,"
Dr. Peter J. Hotez, "president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute,"
Dr. Steven K. Galson, "acting surgeon general,"
Amanda Peet, who has a brother-in-law who's a doctor at Offit's Philadelphia hospital,
Dr. Nancy J. Minshew, "a neurologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center," and
Arthur Allen, "the author of "Vaccine: The Controversial Story of Medicine's Greatest Lifesaver."


Jenny McCarthy, "the actress and former Playboy model who has an autistic son,"
Deirdre Imus, "wife of the radio host,"
J. B. Handley, "who founded Generation Rescue."

Any (of the here un-named) experts on our side are labeled, "fringe scientists"....but there's no mention of Dr. Bernadine Healy or Dr. Peter Fletcher from the UK...along with a number of others I could name. Why not specifically NAME THOSE MAKING THE FALSE CLAIMS? Is Thomas Burbacher ..."fringe"?
Is Boyd Haley?
Dr. Peter J. Hotez, president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, is quoted saying, "If the surgeon general or the secretary of health or the head of the C.D.C. would come out and make a really strong statement on this, I think the whole thing would go away." Where is Hotez living? Julie Gerberding, head of the CDC, has long denied EVERYTHING and it hasn't changed anything.

Try as they might, the NYTimes and Paul Offit just can't make the issue go away.

Anne Dachel
Media editor


Sam, do you have any understanding of how vaccines work? Because, if you do, I wish you would explain to the CDC, FDA, AAP, AMA, etc. The top experts have said that they do not understand how aluminum works as a adjuvant, and how the process of attenuation of viruses works. There also seems to be little or no studies on how multiple vaccines given at once interact, and what is the cumulative longterm effect of so many vaccines given at such a young age. So, if you understand all of this, I hope you will share your research with the world, because you are a step ahead of the leading experts in charge of the vaccine program.

The rotavirus vaccines are quite new. Up until a few years ago there were no vaccines for rotavirus. Yet we did not have a rotavirus epidemic here in the U.S. Studies show that most infants exposed to this virus fight it off with only mild symptoms.

I myself have never ever known anyone who had a problem with this virus, although I know that rare problems occur. The reason why these problems are rare is not because of "herd immunity". The rotavirus vaccine that was introduced a few years ago was quickly pulled from the market, and the current vaccine only recently joined the vaccine schedule. So maybe right now most infants have received the vaccine, but the majority of the population has not.

Regarding measles, a mainstream infectious disease specialist told me that the main reason why measles is more serious in developing countries is because measles suppresses the immune system, making the patient more susceptible to other diseases which are more common in developing countries due to lack of good plumbing, antibiotics, garbage disposal, etc., and inadequate nutrition.


Really quite an offensive and one sided piece of work. Here is my Letter to McNeail:


Your most recent article on autism is very unfair to parents of children with autism. The majority of us feel that vaccines contributed to the disease and for good reason. Both sides of the argument have a lot of credible science to back their claims. The bottom line is that it is unknown definitively whether vaccines cause autism or not. However....there most definitely is a smoking gun. Allowing Paul Offit who has profited so much from vaccines to run rampant with his one sided view and painting parents as whackos is very unfair. You did very little to present a balanced view with only a small percentage of your article showing the other side of the story. Making out parents of kids with autism as whackos is pretty bad, Don, and you will end up very ashamed of yourself in the future when the truth comes out(remember refrigerator mothers?)


sam, I do understand the concept of herd immunity. Yes, children put their hands in their mouths a lot but that doesn't mean we should keep shoving them full of vaccines. I don't think the risks are worth the benefits for most of the shots. I mean the herd, is so freakin' ill with asthma, seizures, learning disabilities, ADHD and autism that it's scary. The chronically-ill herd just goes to show that you can't misunderestimate how little we know about the comlexities of the human body.


jen do you have any understanding of how vaccines should work? the reason that developed countries have few cases of things like rotavirus, measles mumps et al. is because of herd immunity: enough people have some level of immunity to a virus that should someone enter the population who is infected then the infect cannot spread because the people who they meet will be immune.

This is not the case in developing countries which yes have poor sanitation etc this doesn't help but rotavirus can be passed on without them. Especially in young children who will put hands/mouth etc in pretty much anything.


"Galvanizing a backlash against the antivaccine movement"...They wish. The book would have to actually sell copies in order to do that. The only "backlash" being "galvanized" (nice word with a metalurgical ring to it, huh?) is within industry and compromised regulatory agencies which are trying to sustain virtual legal immunity.

But being that these types are in such denial about the properties of metals (and about the vaccine injury Holocaust), their "galvanization" process has been faulty and every "uprising" they try to "galvanize" seems to cave in on itself, only to be taken up by the embedded press as a rescue mission (which is what this article is).

That doesn't mean that Offit and other vaccine thugs can't get government to crack down on safer-vaccine proponents, but they're not having much success getting public sentiment completely behind themselves.

Craig Willoughby

"But we shouldn't "misunderestimate" him"

Jen!!! You took the words right out of my mouth.

I wonder how much money it takes to buy out the NYT so that they can post a crank article like this one? You know, as High Priest of the Church of the Immaculate Vaccination, Pauly PrOffit once said about selling the patent to his Rotateq vaccine: "It was like winning the lottery."

I won't hold my breath waiting for him to disclose his financial conflicts of interest and how much money he made, though. What a slime!

Did you know that the latin word for slime is virus? I read once that they were going to name the Rotavirus after him...you know, the one that gives you diarhea? But calling it the Offit Virus is a bit redundant, don't you think?


Aren't we the opposite of AIDS deniers???


Never misunderestimate a self-proclaimed "servant of the devil."


my letter to McNeail
Shameful article. Offit is not qualified to write about treatments - so why give him ink in the NYT while mocking those who do? Did you have a hard time finding a DAN! doctor to interview or did you just not bother? I heard Temple Grandin speak the other night - a rational person by most accounts but she clearly would not measure up to you. Perhaps you should have gotten the views of her or others living with
autism. Her message to me - delay vaccines and space them out. On the diets - she thought that they help about 20%. How did you manage to write that article without referencing Hannah Poling and her autism
like symptoms caused by vaccines? Do you think she is the only child with mitochondrial issues that has been injured by vaccines? I do not know if vaccines cause autism, I suspect there are many environmental influences. Offit claims they do not. Good for him. But his boastful
words do not close the gaps in science, most prominently in the lack of a vaccinated vs unvaccinated study of childhood developmental illnesses. To compare those who seek complete answers to deniers of the holocaust is a profane comparison.


OH brother, look at him in that picture in his plaid shirt looking trying looking all laid-back and friendly-like when meanwhile he's pimping this stupid shot for something that's only needed in countries with pathetic sanitation and water systems. Poor Dr. Proffit!!
But we shouldn't "misunderestimate" him.HAHA

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