David Kirby: The Lancet Retraction Changes Nothing
Read and comment on David Kirby's Huffington Post piece, "The Lancet Retraction Changes Nothing" HERE.
Dr. Andrew Wakefield is one of the most vilified medical practitioners of recent times, and now he carries the extremely rare dishonor of a retraction in The Lancet, on the paper he coauthored in 1998 suggesting a potential link between autism, bowel disease and Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine.
I believe that the public lynching and shaming of Dr. Wakefield is unwarranted and overwrought, and that history will ultimately judge who was right and who was wrong about proposing a possible association between vaccination and regressive autistic spectrum disorder (ASD).
Wakefield's critics can condemn, retract, decry and de-license all they want, but that does nothing to stop or alter the march of science, which has come a long way over the past 12 years, and especially in the last year or two. The evidence that autism is increasing at alarming rates, and that some thing (or things) in our environment is wreaking havoc on a vulnerable one-percent of all US children is now so irrefutable that, finally, the federal government is climbing aboard the environmental research bandwagon - way late, but better than never...
David Kirby is author of Evidence of Harm, a regular contributor to Huffington Post and a contributor to Age of Autism. His next book, Animal Factory: The Looming Threat of Industrial Pig, Dairy, and Poultry Farms to Humans and the Environment will be released within the year and is available now for pre-order at Barnes & Noble.
Fascinating. Everyone here is sure that Wakefield is/was right. The entire world's scientific community (!) knows that his study was flawed and that the results can't be reproduced. You claim that this is a cover-up of monumental proportions by pharma companies and the All-Powerful Government; the rest of the world dismisses this as unadulterated crap. (Food for thought: if this is a cover-up that, say, Big Pharma and the CDC are involved in, and real rates of autism are increasing [as opposed to more accurately diagnosed or more heavily reported] that means that there must be some people involved in the conspiracy that have autistic children. Do you really believe that, after their own families were affected, they would continue to conspire against the rest of the world? Or are "they" magically exempt?)
This is a classic case of poor perspective and confirmation bias. People visiting this site are already affected (have autistic children/relatives, work with autistic individulas, et cetera), and will tend to see only what is directly in front of them rather than the big picture.
I doubt that this will make it past the moderator but... The autism 'networks' are starting to seem more and more cult-like every day. Everyone else is wrong, every one else is out to get you, only you have the truth, and it's up to you to bring the truth to the world...
Posted by: Grothesque | February 10, 2010 at 11:19 PM
Speaking of NPR, here's an interesting story on NPR's blog called, "How Many Endoscopic Exams Could You Handle?"
"Healthy volunteers in the six-month study got 15 separate endoscopic exams to see how five different drugs and aspirin affected their stomachs and the tops of their small intestines."
What?!? Invasive medical procedures performed on healthy individuals for the sake of research? Some are criticizing Dr. Wakefield for doing diagnostic procedures on children with severe bowel problems. Surely there will be even more of an outcry about the study described in this NPR article? Naw, because this study was done by the pharma company AstraZeneca.
Posted by: Twyla | February 05, 2010 at 10:55 PM
I understand that you're all looking for someone to blame for your children's autism... you'll just have to find something else.
Posted by: Nathaniel | February 05, 2010 at 01:38 PM
Yes,this is all about the billion dollar vaccine business they are protecting.The toxic Merck stock that keep rising.Corrupt
Lancet,they represent big Pharma interests.
In few years autism,alzheimers,auto-immune
disorders,cancer will double.So everyone will be able to see that we are being poisoned by
mercury,aluminum,formaldehyde etc.We us parents,need to unite and RISE ABOVE THESE CORRUPT,TOXIC SNAKES AND VULTURES.WE MUST PROTECT OUR CHILDREN,WE MUST SOAR LIKE AN EAGLE,WE MUST STAND BY DR.WAKEFIELD,WE MUST STOP THIS AUTISM DISASTER.MY SON IS RICHARD,
I WILL DO EVERYTHING IN MY POWER TO FIGHT UNTIL MY LAST BREATH.THANK YOU MISRA,YOU ARE SO RIGHT.
Posted by: just a Mother | February 04, 2010 at 11:41 AM
James, if you focus on criticizing comments rather than reading past Age of Autism columns, you will never understand the science and politics of vaccine-induced autism. But you might feel smug for a few moments.
Posted by: nhokkanen | February 03, 2010 at 05:07 PM
To James, You sound like an inteligent person, so let me offer you a ringside seat for the the greatest medical disaster in history- autism. Its very easy- All you have to do is to follow Age of Autism for a few months and also look at the work done by Safeminds and Generation Rescue. It wont take you long to get the picture. Then I would like you to meditate on the fact that if you had been born post 1985, you might easily have been autistic. Now if you had been autistic and had autistic bowel disease, your parents might be flying you across the country to see Dr. Wakefield.
Your ringside seat may be largely on the computer. My ringside seat was a bit different. Running a nursery school in New Delhi, I watched as the autism tsunami arose in India after Indian pediatricians added the same mercury containing vaccines which the Americans began to use in 1980's. Today I am apprehensive each time a young couple tells me that they have a little boy of two. Will he be shrieking rather than talking? Will he attack other kids eyes? Will he be largely unresponsive to adult instructions?
Will his parents have to learn to accept that they must care for him all his life?How do they feel when their pediatrician washes his hands of their child- Sends them for an expensive DIAGNOSIS! and even more expensive therapy that does little for their child. This is the real world James- The real world of autism. Dont turn your face away James- One day you will be able to tell your grandchildren how you saw the disaster of autism with your own eyes
Posted by: Cherry Sperlin Misra | February 03, 2010 at 02:24 PM
At some point the powers that be are going to have to cut their losses and issue a mea culpa - end their crimes against humanity.
Right now those "losses" are 1.5 million children (in the US alone) x $3 + million for lifetime care - and growing every single day - 25,000+ new ASD diagnoses every year...
As bad as it would be for them now, it is only going to get worse. We parents aren't going to stop until it stops.
Posted by: A Mom | February 03, 2010 at 12:42 PM
Carol, I don't know whether NPR is influenced by funding from vaccine manufacturers. However, as a left-leaning organization, NPR has an editorial POV in favor of big government solutions to problems (e.g., vaccines) as well as a lack of skepticism toward governmental organizations (e.g., the CDC). It's the same reason why Jon Stewart is so unsympathetic -- liberals tend to think government has the answers and is always looking out for us.
Posted by: MB | February 03, 2010 at 10:41 AM
NPR still positions itself as a brave, struggling, community-oriented purveyor of truth even after receiving over $200 million from the widow of Ray Kroc, founder of the McDonald's empire (think glutamates, artificial colors and flavors, etc) some years back. NPR will take money from anyone - from your dollar to Mrs. Kroc's millions. Give them no credence, ever. They are hopeless.
Posted by: Rae | February 03, 2010 at 10:20 AM
I have something to share with you all. And though it is long I hope you rad it all. For it will lift you up like few things in this world can. Below is text from a speech at the end of Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator. And these words ring truer now I believe that ever before! And I believe these words apply to our struggle.
"I'm sorry, but I don't want to be an emperor. That's not my business. I don't want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone if possible - Jew, Gentile - black man - white.
We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other's happiness - not by each other's misery. We don't want to hate and despise one another. In this world there's room for everyone and the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone.
The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned men's souls - has barricaded the world with hate - has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost.
The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in man - cries for universal brotherhood - for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world - millions of despairing men, women, and little children - victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people. To those who can hear me, I say: 'Do not despair.' The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed - the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish.
Soldiers! Don't give yourselves to brutes - men who despise you and enslave you - who regiment your lives - tell you what to do - what to think and what to feel! Who drill you - diet you - treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don't give yourselves to these unnatural men - machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts. You don't hate, only the unloved hate - the unloved and the unnatural!
Soldiers! Don't fight for slavery! Fight for liberty! In the seventeenth chapter of St Luke, it is written the kingdom of God is within man not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people, have the power - the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful - to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then in the name of democracy - let us use that power - let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world - a decent world that will give men a chance to work - that will give youth a future and old age a security.
By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfil that promise. They never will! Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people. Now let us fight to fulfil that promise! Let us fight to free the world - to do away with national barriers - to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason - a world where science and progress will lead to all men's happiness. Soldiers, in the name of democracy, let us unite!
Hannah, can you hear me? Wherever you are, look up Hannah. The clouds are lifting! The sun is breaking through! We are coming out of the darkness into the light. We are coming into a new world - a kindlier world, where men will rise above their hate, their greed and their brutality. Look up, Hannah! The soul of man has been given wings and at last he is beginning to fly. He is flying into the rainbow - into the light of hope, into the future, the glorious future that belongs to you, to me, and to all of us. Look up, Hannah... look up!"
Posted by: Darian (nickname) | February 03, 2010 at 09:54 AM
James, Sit back - take a breath - and logically think about the ingredients in vaccines such as the antigens, adjuvants such as aluminum salts, growth mediums such as animal cells and aborted fetus immortal cells, preservatives such as formaldehyde, additives such as ammonium sulfate, stabilizers such as fetal bovine serum, and contaminants that will be present to varying extents.
Ok, then these ingredients are injected at birth (Hepatitis B), and at two months numerous vaccine njections are given within minutes of each other. Have you looked at the Immunization Schedule? Thirty-eight to Forty-one injections by age 18 months??
And with Thimerosal (mercury) in most all Flu vaccines touted by the CDC to be given all kids over 6 months old. Are they crazy!? And to pregnant women?!
How many vaccine injections were you given at that age?
Still thinking? Do you think these injected ingredients might possibly cause severe reactions? Just might?
You want science? Please tell me or show me science showing vaccine ingredients are beneficial to infant cell growth. Thank you.
Posted by: david burd | February 03, 2010 at 09:42 AM
Thank you David, This is an opportunity for all of us to help shift the tides and influence the public's view of the Wakefield persecution. It wasn't very smart of the GMC to create a martyr, but that's exactly what they've done! So now we need to seize this chance to exercise our power as a collective force. If everyone: parents, physicians, researchers took a few moments to speak to someone who is in the dark about this, or wrote a letter to the editor of their local paper, or called NPR, emailed, Facebooked, Twittered, blogged etc, we could help the public see beyond the smoke screen. The Merck-supported, government-backed, Brian Deer-boosted decision was wrong, we all know that. But what this well funded propaganda driven machine hasn't fully comprehended is that we are all taking the public persecution of Andrew Wakefield very personally and this groundswell of resistance is not going away.
Posted by: Maureen H. McDonnell, RN | February 03, 2010 at 09:34 AM
James - Parents of kids with autism ARE the people who look at the science. They ARE the people who look at ALL the science, hour upon hour upon hour upon hour, They are the people who take the time to pick up a prob & stat book, if they don't understand statistics, because it WILL help them understand. They are the ones who WILL do the digging to find out the source of funding, because funding and gifting DOES create a sense of reciprocity and thereby creates skewed communication. They ARE the ones encouraging people to make fully INFORMED decisions. Bad science IS out there, and so is the good science, and if anyone can tell the differnce, it's the people that use this site.
Posted by: Jenny | February 03, 2010 at 08:34 AM
NPR gets funding from vaccine manufacturers? Protesting the retraction of a badly done study? A stock boosting ploy by Merck? Are you guys even paying attention to what you're saying? This is the kind of thing I expect from people who deny the moon landings and 9/11 truthers. Seriously. Science is all we have. Read the actual research or don't, either way, but don't stop looking at the evidence and then declare that you have the solution. That's simply misguided and you're gonna kill A LOT of kids with misinformation.
Posted by: James | February 03, 2010 at 06:36 AM
NPR is a disgrace when it comes to autism and vaccines. They must get a large part of their funding from vaccine manufacturers.
Posted by: Carol | February 03, 2010 at 01:25 AM
32 Jamestown Road
London NW1 7BY, UK
360 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10010-1710 USA
I challenge a group of moms and dads to do this quickly with news reportes in tow...
Do it for me, please? On west coast and strapped for cash to get on a plane to organize.
I also found emails for complaints...if any want them...
Posted by: Kathy Blanco | February 03, 2010 at 12:50 AM
Gee 12 years to decide to retract a paper.
Just another Merck stock boosting power play.
I see it worked.
Unindemnify the industry. Do they really think we are that stupid?
How do you cover measles in the gut and hyperplasia? With spin.
Posted by: TheCDCworks4Merck | February 03, 2010 at 12:27 AM
Well done David
Posted by: Lisa | February 02, 2010 at 09:44 PM
They don't know. A few that are able to think for themselves do. All I can do is tell people that my son was severely disabled because of routine childhood vaccinations. What they do with that information is not up to me. All any of us can do is keep telling the truth, and fight for our kids.
Posted by: julie | February 02, 2010 at 08:57 PM
Has anyone heard the NPR piece done on Dr. Wakefield? Don't read the comments after it unless you've had your blood pressure medicine today. The major problem is that people outside the autism world have no idea who the players are and what the history is. I really wish there was a site to refer "neurologically typicals" to that lays things out like actors in a playbill. They aren't motivated like we are to dig in and dig deep to find out what's going on-they just accept what is put in front of them. Lets start unraveling that...hmmmm?
Posted by: aut mama | February 02, 2010 at 08:27 PM