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The "Mindset" of Our Opponents

Mindset By Kent Heckenlively, Esq.

I want to win the "Vaccine-Autism War."

It's probably why I spend inordinate amounts of my scarce free time watching History Channel specials on military battles and tactics.  The books I read also tend to be about great historical struggles and what eventually happened. 

And sometimes I simply can't believe we haven't already won.  Consider the facts:

Since the 1980's the number of vaccines children have received have more than tripled, with the majority of them coming in the first eighteen months of life.

The rate of autism has gone from 1 in 10,000 to 1 in 100.  At the height of the polio epidemic the numbers were never greater than 1 in 2,000.

A significant and vocal number of parents claim the changes in their child's development came after a vaccination.

And yet the government and medical authorities refuse to conduct the one study, (the neurological differences between fully vaccinated and fully unvaccinated children), that would settle the matter.

I recently read a book, "Mindset" by Dr. Carol Dweck, a professor of psychology at Stanford University, which I believe has relevance to our struggle against the medical community.  Sometimes it's not enough to have facts on your side, you have to understand the psychology of the other side and use it yo your advantage.

Dr. Dweck identifies two types of mindsets among people, the "fixed" mindset and the "growth" mindset. 

In the fixed mindset a person is motivated by a desire to look smart and therefore has a tendency to avoid challenges, will give up easily when frustrated, and ignores useful negative feedback.  How many of you feel that the majority of physicians you've encountered fall into the fixed mindset?  Honestly, if you were a physician wouldn't you think children with autism present an amazing diagnostic challenge?  From their pale skin, to their gastro-intestinal issues, multiple food allergies, abnormal immune markers, I couldn't think of a greater medical challenge.  And as we expect to find some brilliant, if somewhat eccentric physician, like the fictional Dr. Gregory House, who won't let go of a case until he finds the answer, we get a collective shrug, as if we're dealing with some sullen teenager.

By contrast, the person with a growth mindset is lead by a desire to learn and will therefore embrace challenges, persist in the face of obstacles, and try to learn from criticism.  Those rare doctors you have met with this mindset are probably among your heroes, even if they haven't yet been able to fully resolve the problems of your child.

In many of the historical struggles I read about or watch on television there usually comes a point when one of the individuals tries to fully understand the psychology of their opponent.  In World War II General George Patton was able to effectively fight Rommel because he'd read Rommel's book on tank warfare and understood his battle-field philosophy.  In our own time, Nelson Mandela tried to fully understand the psychology of the white South Africans who opposed racial equality and persuade them to voluntarily take the steps necessary to dismantle apartheid.

What does the fixed mindset look like in the modern world?  Dweck points to Enron as an example.  They believed in the "talent" rather than the effort theory of hiring potential employees.  In a movie about the Enron debacle they were termed "the smartest guys in the room."  Nobody called them the hardest-working guys.  Their brains were supposed to be their secret weapon, even if they didn't use them.  They believed in themselves so much they became convinced that if they thought of an idea which could make them money they could put that amount of money in their account books as income.  Those of us who live in the real world know that just because we think of a potential money-making idea doesn't mean the bank will put that money in our bank account.

It's this kind of "magical thinking" in the medical community which is difficult to take for so many autism parents.  First, we're told there is no increase in autism even though school districts are swamped with special needs classes.  Then we're told that as a sign of our competitive times parents are demanding their child be classified as developmentally-delayed so they can get extra services.  All of this comes despite studies from places like UC Davis which show a real increase in the rate of autism.  And when twin studies show that "shared environments" seem to be as much of a contributor to autism as genetics, we get another shrug from the medical community.

And how do we get the medical community to move from a "fixed" mindset to a "growth" one?  It is a significant challenge.  People who have a fixed mindset are invested in looking smart, not in moving to a higher plane of understanding.  And think of what they will have to accept.  That they have caused the autism epidemic, an epidemic which is twenty times larger than the polio epidemic. 

The choice lies with the medical community.  They can either persist in their behavior and end up in shame like Enron, or acknowledge the need for change and live as the white South Africans do in peace with the neighbors they once brutalized.

If the medical community will extend a hand to us and try to learn how to help our children you will find a willing partner.  We stand ready.  The medical community needs to tell the truth, no matter how painful that might be.  They took an oath to heal, not to avoid responsibility.

We await your answer.

Kent Heckenlively is a Contributing Editor to Age of Autism




kathy blanco

Benedetta, that is a really good question. I think the better question is why does our children harbor such harmful bacterial problems. Like HIV children, who also harbor similar ones, we can go with XMRV/MLV and other retroviruses, not to mention even lyme bacteria. These are all modern day bacterial problems. I blame that on vaccines and overuse of abx's. (however, I really think ab'xs are valuable in lyme infections).

The thought occured to me about outrage...when does it become so vocal that even doctors relinquish their thought patterns? One, you have to have good science. Presently, autism research goes off on tangents, which often don't help our children now. If I were a researcher, I would ask the bottom line question, is this going to help autistic children NOW. Priorities.

When the outrage reaches major proportions, it is only done through our vigulence that not just autism occurs after vaccine and environmental damage. The newly arising diseases, or the "new normal" should be shocking to the average american. Food allergies (particularly peanut because peanut oil is used in vaccines), asthma, diabetis, obesity come to mind. These can all be caused by vaccines. (obesity viruses are in the mobilivirus/distemper families, aka, measles vaccine-aka, let's not forget they use chickens in vaccines, aka ad-36). These are all exasterbated by environmental levels of msg in foods, metals in our air, water, and foods, etc.

What is more telling is that autism and these other diseases have not quite reached the level of panic mode. But the other day, it occured to me just how much vaccine damage has damaged our population. It is known that vaccines can cause leaky gut. How many of you know someone like this below?

Symptoms include: abdominal pain, asthma, chronic joint pain, chronic muscle pain, confusion, fuzzy or foggy thinking, gas, indigestion, mood swings, nervousness, poor immunity, recurrent vaginal infections, skin rashes, diarrhoea, bed-wetting, recurrent bladder infections, poor memory, shortness of breath, constipation, bloating, aggressive behaviour, anxiety, fatigue, feeling toxic.

If people only knew what damage was being done on them? This is the education that must go forward, and keep on saying are not going unscathed from vaccines, NEVER. Sooner or later, your SV40 and XMRV will catch up to you in the form of cancers and neurological cooking fulminant cooking diseases later on in life.

this is the fight of our lives

I do believe though that most doctors themselves don't follow the same schedule for their own kids, just like the CDC workers as reported here in AoA.
This fight is going to get ugly before things can get better. Doctors, CDC employees should be forced to disclose how their own children are vaccinated. The hypocrisy needs to be exposed. This is the only way we can push them to start openly questioning vaccines. As long as they are allowed to preach one thing for someone else's kid and practice something else for their own, they will not speak up or act in good faith.

CT teacher

Leslie Phillips and Karen S,
You bring up a good point about the newer, younger doctors which I had not thought about. They are very indoctrinated indeed. A good example of this was the episode of the DOCTORS show when Travis went ballistic after JB Handley gave his opinion on national TV. As I recall, doctors supported and applauded Travis' obnoxious behavior. When I consider my daughter's friends who are in the medical profession (doctors and nurses), I realize that they are all staunch vaccine supporters....fine examples of the power of brainwashing young minds.

Karen S.

Leslie Phillips,

I have this fear also. It seems to me that the older pediatricians remember a time when developmental disabilities and auto-immune illnesses were rare. Now when they hear report after report by parents that their children regressed following vaccines, they must believe, in their hearts, that the vaccines are somehow involved. Very few would admit this, though. The young physicians, on the other hand, have never known anything else and really believe that these kinds of medical and developmental problems are to be expected. On top of this, there is probably so much more pharmaceutical influence over what they are taught in medical school than there was for earlier generations of medical students.


Great analogy, Kent. Many science bloggers and their commenters often sound utterly disconnected from the reality of vaccine injury victims -- viewing them as abstractions or statistical nuisances rather than living, breathing, hurting fellow humans.

Vaccine injury denialists use jargon-laden theories to dismiss critics, dismissing legitimate safety concerns as merely the product of "echo chambers" of "incestuous amplification." They add insult to injury with the polarizing utilitarian benefits-outweigh-risks rationale for allowing vaccine injuries to continue.

Scientists cannot appoint themselves health guardians and vaccine warriors via the digital volume of their theoretical blood sport. The real heroes are those who devote themselves to time-consuming investigation, backtracking, reformulating, and adapting to real-world post-market conditions.

Heidi N

Well Kent, I have two thoughts to add. One is "They don't know they don't know." In other words they really are oblivious to the fact that they have incompetent thinking. Kind of like how a con man feels it's ok to con people out of money since he looks at his behavior as a skill, not even thinking about ethics or harm to others. The excuse their behavior and lie to themselves that they are justified to do what they do.

Secondly, I have learned that greed is behind nearly every decision known to man. So, of course, those who work for vaccine manufacturers will follow along as in the "Emperor's New Clothes" story because they don't want to stand out, and will likely get fired if they do. I have seen so many reports on how the industries are all related, people working for a large corporation, then working for a governmental agency to get something passed, then returning to work for their private organization in of course a better job, since now the company can make more money off the "new thing" that he got approved to do. People are concerned about their income, getting their kids through college, making the payments on their summer homes, avoiding getting layed-off, etc. Thus, they will do unscrupulous things to keep the income coming. I am sure ethical means could keep the income coming, but that would likely entail more work in the short-run, and people don't like more work. Unfortunately, in the long run, everyone suffers, as in everyone. The amount of people on disability has got to be climbing every year because I sure know lots of people who are disabled, and rarely knew anyone years ago who was.


Sorry I meant to spell it with a k not a c; Kathy


Cathy Blanco;
Is this some type of different fungus sub species than what every body else carries?

Jeff C

Kent - we are winning it's just painfully slow. They keep releasing whitewash reports giving themselves a clean bill of health. With each new whitewash, the commentary from the vaccine defenders is so predictable it is almost comedic, "Now we can *finally* get past this autism nonsense, once and for all".

Yet it continues, and is spreading. Exemptions are up, parents are questioning pediatricians instead of dutifully complying ("so much valuable time wasted explaining this to parents" is the new lament), newspaper articles warning of "mandatory" vaccines are almost always followed by reader comments explaining that they aren't mandatory and urging parents to do their own research, and most of all, the flop of Gardasil, H1N1, and Rotateq (to some extent) vaccines are ominous signs for the industry.

In the words, of Dr. Verstraeten, "It just won't go away!"


Its always about the money,the medical industry would lose to much money from vaccinations if they admit the truth.
As long as the media,physicians and politicians are in bed together nothing will change.

Vicki Hill

I think you have left out one important point, Kent: professional liability. It is much easier, and safer, for a doctor to suggest that a family would prefer another doctor, or 'refer' the patient onward, than to try to get to the bottom of a complex situation. There is huge risk for any professional who bucks the establishment. Contractual arrangements with insurance companies and with groups of doctors may require vaccinating a certain percentage of patients fully and on time.

I personally think a more productive approach might be to go to the insurance companies. After all, they are paying for the vaccines AND for treatments due to any side effects caused by vaccines. It would be in their economic interests to look at the cost versus benefits of vaccines. The obvious one to start with, in my opinion, is the Hep B at birth. Insurance is spending millions of dollars on this each year, but where is the evidence that any lives have been saved, or any Hep B treatment dollars have been saved, by giving it then? Once you open the door to the concept of cost-benefit analysis of vaccines, then you can more easily bring up the questions relating to other vaccines.

There is precedent for this cost-benefit approach. Higher and higher percentages of children in the U.S. have been born via Caesarean, and insurance started asking, "Why?" And it turned out that there wasn't a valid medical reason for it - it had everything to do with doctors' perception of their professional liability.

kathy blanco

I have been told more than once, that to become a doctor, one has to grow up with the verbage from mom, that "you are so smart, your going to be a doctor one day" kind of parenting, makes them so egotistical, they cannot listen to the minority voice or the voice of reason. That, and on top of medical schools supported by pharmaceutical interests, and no valuable time in ecology of the gut, nutrition, whole body interactions. I came across this the other day, which really made sense to me in terms of why some kids get autism and some don't. Do note, that those with chronic candida are also seen in HIV retroviral diseases, and if our kids have XMRV, well, then.. hmmm?

These are the children who are born at risk for autism because they lack a healthy inner ecosystem at birth. A healthy inner ecosystem is made up of the friendly microflora (good bacteria) that reside in our intestines and keep us healthy and strong. Babies who lack this inner ecosystem have almost no immunity (since 85% of our immunity is located in the lymph tissue in the gut). Vaccinations were originally created for people with strong immune systems who had resistance to the pathogens that were injected into their blood stream. Newborn babies have not had time to build strong immune systems. Without a healthy inner ecosystem, the immune system will never be strong.

“Beware of Systemic Fungal Infection Combined With Vaccinations A baby's blood-brain barrier isn't formed until 6 weeks after birth. Before the blood-brain barrier is formed, there is potential for fungus and viral infections to enter your baby's brain.... Many children appear to be relatively normal upon birth. They may have problems with things like constipation -- until they get the MMR vaccination around 18 months. Based on my research, I believe that upon inoculation with these three live viruses, the mumps portion causes the blood-brain barrier to open. We know this because when a child becomes infected with the mumps virus, his blood pressure elevates. Research shows that the blood-brain barrier opens with elevated blood pressure. Your doctor may not know this, since it is not taught in medical school. Swollen lymph glands in the neck and high blood pressure are symptoms of mumps infection -- and because the child has an underdeveloped immune system, instead of building antibodies to the live viruses in this vaccination, he becomes infected by the vaccination.

“While a child is supposed to develop immunity, the immune system is not in place due to the existing fungal infection. The child has no ability to resist the assault from 3 live viruses: measles, mumps and rubella (measles has been found on the gut wall by Dr. Andrew Wakefield). The child is not the same and shows signs of infection in the brain. He begins to regress in language development and social behaviors. We believe that the systemic fungal infection (that was unknowingly passed to millions of newborn babies) can not only secrete dangerous toxins, but also pass through the open blood-brain barrier. The child then becomes infected with candidial meningitis or viral meningitis.... If it has not yet entered the brain, the elevated blood pressure allows it to enter through the blood-brain barrier. .... our theory makes much more sense than autism as a genetic condition. This can empower parents to make changes that will benefit themselves and their children.

Theodore Van Oosbree

Mindset aside, the financial considerations and the loss of credibility the medical profession would suffer if they admitted the great harm they have done would be staggering. Don't expect any change until the current generation of physicians dies off (if then).

Leslie Phillips

My greatest concern isthat the most vehement, rigid, arrogant max-vax physicians are generally the youngest. It has become, more recently, somewhat of a "jihad" and they are taught we are their sworn enemies, baby killers. In fact it is they who are stealing lives, sometimes literally (in cases of vaccine-induced deaths), sometimes by taking the God-given potential of a child and forever altering it.

There are some older physicians, who (inevitably) have had to face that they are not, in fact, GOD, which they've learned the hard way from mistakes that cost people their health or their lives. They might have, at least, the tiniest bit of humility. I have more hope in them than I do the newly-minted, fully-indoctrinated, narcissistic young ones.


I think you are on to something here, Kent. It is the desire to "look smart" that is motivating many in this disaster. And unfortunately, the vaccine pushers know this. That is why the internet is over-run with vaccine-promoting bullies.

Verbal bullies intimidate their targets by name-calling and ridicule. Why do they do this? As I have told my daughter, who has sadly been a victim of bullying, bullies act the way they do because they are insecure about themselves. They call others names because somehow it makes them feel better about themselves to put others down. They are the ones who have mental and emotional problems--not the people they are bullying. Even though the effect of their horrible behavior is often to make those they bully feel bad or stupid or inadequate, the truth is that the bully is really the one who is bad, stupid, inadequate and most seriously in need of help.

Doctors are people who have been told over and over that they are the best and the brightest. They are the "blue-eyed children" of Jane Elliott's classroom. They all want to believe themselves superior intellectually--even when deep down many, perhaps most, actually realize how little they really know about how the immune system works, about biology, about helping their patients. This makes them very insecure. Now along comes this situation where people who don't have the years of medical education they have (clear inferiors!) are saying: Wait a minute. Something is wrong! What are you doing? What have you been doing? You really don't know as much as you have been pretending to know. In fact, you aren't making people get well--you are making people get sick!!

What is the reaction of many? They feel even more insecure, less competent--at least inside. Their sense of superiority is threatened; they fear they are going to be "found out."

So what do those who feel most threatened do? They react by calling their opponents names--ignorant, misled, anti-vaccine, baby-killers, etc. etc. etc. We have all read their bullying tirades on various blogs and comment streams. Rather than admit the limitations of their own knowledge and abilities, or of medical and scientific knowledge, they resort to bullying and threats. If you don't do what we say, then we won't treat you. (Blackmail.) If you don't follow our directions, we'll turn you in to CPS. (Extorsion) If you question vaccines, it must be because you are stupid enough to listen to a crazy Playboy bunny rather than a clearly more educated doctor. (Ridicule.)

Those who profit from the current situation egg the bullies on; they underwrite them, pay them directly, and repeat the bullying messages through whatever media avenues they can access.

This works well because other doctors (and non-doctors), who may not resort to bullying themselves, who may even have questions and uncertainties, feel more secure knowing that those who question them and their actions are marginalized, ridiculed, and ostracized. A sort of mob-mentality ensues. If a doctor (or anyone) has niggling questions, he/she is better able to shove aside the concerns, confident in the sense that what they are doing is supported by the "preponderance of scientific evidence," as the medical/science bullies are wont to constantly chant.

Those who aren't comforted by this bullying refrain, don't speak up much, if at all, because they don't want to be among those being ridiculed and marginalized. So they stay silent. They may take personal actions, like not vaccinating their own kids, or off-the-record agreeing with parents who say they are concerned about vaccines, or maybe even tacitly supporting non-mainstream remediation of vaccine injuries (like gfcf diets, B-12 supplementation, digestive enzymes, oral chelation, etc.). These doctors (and others) attempt to maintain their ties and standing in the medical community while assuaging their guilt and insecurities by trying to be helpful to those whose injuries they too suspect could be tied to vaccines.

This is a situation much like Aparteid. It is wrong and many people know it. But they are afraid to speak up and stand out because they are intimidated by the bullies. They fear the loss of privilege and wealth and reputation that would come if the bullies continue to dominate the conversation. They also fear the loss of privilege, wealth and reputation that would ensue if the wrongs were recognized and their part in the wrong-doing was revealed, and possibly punished. Quite simply, they are afraid. And that is just the way the vaccine bullies want them to feel.

Once the vaccine bullies are fully revealed for who and what they are, they WILL lose their power. And the walls will come tumbling down with surprising speed and ferocity. As in the Arab uprisings, the powerful and corrupt will ultimately fall. And they will be surprised by how few real supporters they have and how fast those whom they thought were friends will abandon them to their well-deserved fates.

Falling childhood vaccination rates and rising philosophical and religious vaccine exemption rates, however small the changes, are evidence that the walls are starting to crumble. The increasing refusal of the flu vaccines is more evidence. The rising interest in alternative medical treatments, organic foods, increasing market availability of gluten-free options, increases in the popularity of homeschooling, etc. are all evidence that people are beginning to ask questions, beginning to see the bullies for what they are. Government clamp downs on raw milk producers, FDA raids on supplement companies, additonal bills to give the FDA more power to regulate food and supplements, are all evidence that the powers that be (eg Pharma) are feeling threatened. And well they should. The truth will out.

Hopefully sooner rather than later.


CT teacher:" wait until the old guard dies off, then maybe a new mindset will take hold." I think you could be right about that. Oddly enough that gives me hope.


Hopefully, per the new infant mortality figures in the US, Nancy Snyderman will grow and see that it might just be possible that vaccinating more means lowered health, especially vaccinating for hep b on the first day of life and flu shots for pregnant moms, babies...hopefully.

CT teacher

The medical profession is responsible for more than the autism epidemic. How about diabetes, allergies, food allergies, asthma, ADHD,all autoimmune illnesses, gastrointestinal illnesses, etc., etc.? In short, they are responsible at least in part, for the chronic conditions that affect our children.
I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for doctors to change to a "growth mindset. These people will dig in their heels and defend the status quo. Medicine is an entrenched bureaucracy, totally resistant to change. We will have to wait until the old guard dies off, and then maybe a different mindset will take hold. For now, we have to find and appreciate the few who are able to think "outside of the box".

Angus Files

Forgot this one from our battle weary mates ..

Australia's climate scientists expose shock-jock distortion tactics
Academics catalogue the deluge of spin and misinformation of climate science by various Murdoch-owned papers

Angus Files

Our time is coming soldier.As Murdoch slips slowly into the abis taking all the journo pharma hacks with him ..

Rupert Murdoch's daily paper angers Australian government

The Australian publishes erroneous report about country's PM that could lead to a withdrawal of state ads


Because we have people like Senator Mitch McConnell that has been around since forever and have received letters from be forever - but he had polio as a child and he has heard of other kids choking to death with diptheria and he has probably had the whooping cough and whooped all winter and he had measles and he was really sick then tooo, and he heard of a baby born with it mother having rubella and it had to have lots of heart operations.

And all of those diseases counts but autism it just don't count.

The rise in diabetes and obesity is because Americans are greedy, and have a weak nature and they just need to control thei food intake-- so let us change the food pyramid to a round circle like a plate - but it is not the vaccines because the NATIONAL INSTITUE OF HEALTH SAYS SO.

They burned down my house, I would like to burn down theirs, but I am a small rebel and can't do nothing - not even tell Mitch McConnell that vaccines are useful but they are burninig down our country.

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