Seth Mnookin Boots Jake Crosby Out of Public Conference Chaired by Merck Exec
Seth Mnookin blatantly lied about me again, this time at a public conference run by an organization that is chaired by a Merck vaccines executive. In short, I asked Mnookin a question during the Q/A period; he stopped me, accused me of disrupting the event, and falsely stated I had disrupted past events of his, whereupon security escorted me out.
It all happened on December 2, 2011 – my 23rd birthday – when I attended the “Research Ethics Book Group Lunch and Book Signing,” at the annual “Advancing Ethical Research Conference,” held by “Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research” (PRIMR).
The book being discussed was “Panic Virus,” by Seth Mnookin, who fielded questions from the audience. He was originally scheduled to be physically present, but his daughter was born three weeks early the day before, so he held the discussion via Skype. The conference was listed under the “current speaking schedule” on his personal website.
When signing up in advance online, I was told the event was already full, so my name was placed on the waitlist. Nonetheless, enough people who successfully registered for the event did not show up, and I was allowed in without a registration badge after giving my name, saying that I was on the waitlist and also saying I was covering the event for a major autism news website. I was even told I could sit down at one of the tables and help myself to lunch.
In the lead up to the question and answer session, a sheet labeled “Questions for discussion” was handed out to all audience members, filled with some of the most loaded questions I’ve ever seen, one of which read:
According to Mnookin, Andrew Wakefield and the other players in the movement to link vaccines and autism succeeded in convincing so many people, despite overwhelming scientific evidence against such a link, because they played to the desperation and frustration of parents of autistic children. How, according to Mnookin, did the desperation and frustration of parents also allow Wakefield and other clinicians who “treated” autistic children – with multiple endoscopies and the like – to shield themselves from charges that they were engaged in bad science and unethical behavior?
Surprisingly, the conversations by some of the folks at my table seemed to run counter to the overarching message of the event. I overheard one person saying he always rejects flu shots. Another person remarked that if Seth Mnookin is so sure vaccines do not cause autism; he must have some alternate reason for the skyrocketing rate of the disorder. Except that he doesn’t.
Eventually, the screen at the conference turned on and up came Seth Mnookin’s face. He couldn’t see us; he could only hear us, but we could see and hear him. As soon as questions rolled around, I raised my hand, was called upon and got up to the microphone to ask the first question.
“Hi - Jake Crosby - congratulations,” I said, regarding his newborn daughter. I then proceeded to ask my question:
“With regard to Dr. Andrew Wakefield, given the new advancements within the past month, with Dr. David Lewis…”
Then – all of a sudden – the screen went black. The moderator said that we lost connection. Audience members then told me to switch microphones in case the one I was using didn’t work either.
Eventually, the audio returned. The moderator asked, “Seth, are you there?”
“Yes,” he said, “The last words I picked up were ‘given these new advancements…’” Then his face reappeared.
I later realized he probably disappeared from view in order to make a phone call. I then proceeded to ask how he can continue to accuse Dr. Wakefield of unethical research and bad science given the ongoing investigation by Dr. David Lewis – professional scientist with the National Whistleblower Center – who exonerated Wakefield of the pathology fraud allegations made by BMJ earlier this year, and stated the pathology results were consistent with what was in the Lancet paper, and also given that the expert pathologist – Dr. Amar Dhillon – defended the results in a letter to the BMJ. But as I was finishing up, he cut me off.
“Okay, Jake, I’m going to stop you right there.”
“I just want to know how you can continue to accuse Dr. Wakefield of this.”
“We’ve talked before at my other events you’ve been to, and you’ve been into interrupting and disrupting.”
“I haven’t been disrupting; I was just asking a question.” (At the only event of Mnookin’s that I attended before this one, I conversed with him afterwards. He even shook my hand – hardly a “disruption” of his “events.” But then again, accuracy is not Mnookin’s strong suit as he readily admits.)
“I never mentioned Andrew Wakefield in my plenary address,” he claimed, even though Dr. Andrew Wakefield was mentioned several times in the questions for discussion given out at the event.
During this exchange, I overheard some snickers from a few audience members. Then a woman came up to me, grabbed the microphone, aimed it down at the floor so I couldn’t speak into it and asked, “Can I see your badge, please?”
“I don’t have a badge, I was let in from the waitlist.”
“You’re going to have to leave!”
I repeated what I told her, but it was no use. Apparently, you can’t ask Seth Mnookin a challenging question without a badge.
While she was escorting me out, Seth Mnookin proceeded to answer my question that he had just labeled disruptive of his event. I could make out bits and pieces of what he was saying:
“…he [presumably Dr. Lewis] is not an expert on bowel pathology…the BMJ evaluated the data and found there was nothing there…it doesn’t even matter if Wakefield acted unethically, he’s still wrong…”
I detoured past the microphone I used earlier – which sure enough worked – to respond, “That’s not true.” But the same woman then grabbed that microphone and aimed it down at the floor so that I couldn’t use it either. Meanwhile, Mnookin continued his long, rambling response to my “disruptive” question.
I was then followed out of the room by a security guard in a dark grey suit, who continued to follow me until I was out of the resort. During my perp walk through the hotel, he radioed back my every move, at one point saying as I got on an escalator:
“He just got on the escalator! He is going to the first floor!”
As he got on after me, I called back, “You don’t have to follow me! I’m leaving the building!”
And he replied, “You broke the rules! You were being disruptive!”
“I asked a question as I was allowed!”
“You weren’t supposed to do that!”
Eventually I walked out of the lobby – off the hotel premises – and that’s when he finally stopped trailing me.
In retrospect, I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised. On the PRIMR’s board of directors, sits chairman Dr. Walter Straus. The PRIMR website says of him:
Dr. Walter L. Straus is the Global Director for Scientific Affairs - Vaccines at Merck Research Laboratories, Merck & Co, Inc.
Several attendees of the conference tweeted my exit, accusing me of being a “heckler” for asking my question.
One attendee named Dr. Judy Stone tweeted:
Lunch session with @sethmnookin had an anti-vax heckler challenging Seth re #Wakefield nonsense.
Another person named Chris Witwer even caught a twitpic of me as I was being escorted out. Below his picture, he wrote:
Heckler at @sethmnookin luncheon has been removed. Thx, Gaylord hotel.
Afterwards, Seth Mnookin tweeted about me, lying once more:
I would have preferred responding (& tried to), altho the person wanted to grandstand not talk at #PRIMR_AER11
No, all I wanted to do was ask a challenging question. And he was apparently planning on answering it unchallenged given that the screen he was on went black immediately after I gave my name.
When Dr. Andrew Wakefield was asked challenging questions at Brandeis University (allow to load and go to 1:19:12 and 1:21:39), the challengers were allowed to finish their questions and even ask follow-up questions. They were not cut-off, shut up, or escorted off the premises. That’s because Dr. Wakefield welcomes challenging questions.
Seth Mnookin obviously does not.
Jake Crosby has Asperger Syndrome and is a contributing editor to Age of Autism. He is a 2011 graduate of Brandeis University with a BA in both History and Health: Science, Society and Policy. He currently attends The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services where he is studying for an MPH in epidemiology.
Jake I love your articles and I split a gut when I watched you go at Offit! I have no dog in this fight, but I love watching idiots dealing with their perfect Nemesis.
Posted by: Rob | April 29, 2012 at 09:04 PM
There is a crucial question which seems to be ignored by virtually everybody intent on criticising the Vaccinators.It is proven beyond any doubt that unvaccinated children are far healthier, suffering about 80% less illnesses in life. It was found in the German study of 17,000 people that 4.7% suffered from Asthma, which kills 1400 people every year in the UK.Assuming a 90% vaccination rate it is reasonable to assume 90% of those deaths are amongst vaccinated people. Amongst unvaccinated the figure was 0.2%, say 23 times fewer sufferors.Here's the punch line which nobody seems to have concluded.Of these 1400 Asthma deaths,probably 90% or 1260 people acquired their life-long suffering of Asthma from vaccinations, before counting deaths from other vaccine related illnesses. Hence vaccinations are responsible for killing more than 1260 people every year.Anyone prepared to argue this point?
Posted by: John Ivens | March 16, 2012 at 09:28 AM
Well Age of Autism has given you your answer.
And please keep in mind, the comments on my blog, Adventures In Autism, are not even moderated, and I almost never remove comments (Perhaps 10 since I started blogging in 2004, and only when they were abusive and literally didn't even make a point, I call them "You Suck" comments, because that is what they can be boiled down to). I even leave a note there inviting the writer to come back and make a cogent point.
So yes... I welcome debate in open forums. Absolutely.
Even when they badger and insult me. Even when they are total jerks. Because either I have an answer to their question or I don't, how badly they behave when asking it only exposes their character, it doesn't impugns mine.
Take a read through the comments on my blog sometime.
Posted by: Ginger Taylor | December 12, 2011 at 11:07 AM
Jake, I can't see all the comments, so I'm not sure if I'm repeating what's already been said. It is probably an honor to get booted out of a Seth Mnookin presentation. It only calls attention to your point of view and makes him look more like the jerk he is. Happy belated birthday, and keep up all the good work you do.
Posted by: Janet Levatin | December 11, 2011 at 09:21 PM
"entire medical establishment is standing firmly"
Yes, it is!
No debate allowed!
Thanks for making Jake's, John Stone's and Ginger's point!
Posted by: Benedetta | December 11, 2011 at 11:05 AM
I'm not surprised you use the term anti-vaccine but speaking for myself and any number of differing people that walk and talk on these boards vaccines are very much part of trying to implement a safer future for our children. It's the safe part we are focused on.
I'd actually posit that most of the parents here took there civic duty responsibly and the rest you can work out.
What you are going to have to understand that there is clearly a portion of society and children that vaccines are essentially 'dangerous' as it is with any number of medicines or medical procedures. (Don't believe go and look at some research)
According to your logic (fuzzy) if extended to psychiatric drugs and children everything would be 'hunky dory" Guess what it isn't.
If I or my partner have an autoimmune disease then our child is at x3 of being diagnosed with Autism. So you think that would be a good idea to follow the same vaccine schedule as every other child ? Or would you seek professional advice from an immunologist and weigh up the pros and cons.
Perhaps you and the medical profession would be better off designing medical interventions that these children can access when vaccines may be clearly contraindicated.
Fortunately there are many professional caring medical professionals that take these matters more seriously. They remain focused on Autistic children, their care and their treatment.
Posted by: Anti-What? | December 11, 2011 at 08:46 AM
Of course, your comment might get posted but it is just a piece of unexampled ad hominem abuse, isn't it?
Ginger was pointing out that the behaviour of Seth Mnookin under pressure (as decribed by Jake) was cowardly (he ran away), and as an objective interpretation of his actions it is hard to disagree.
Posted by: John Stone | December 11, 2011 at 04:49 AM
Ginger: So of course this comment(wherein I say that the anti-vaccine movement is a tragic mixture of fuzzy thinkers and charlatans that causes children to die, and whose death toll is only as low as it is because the entire medical establishment is standing firmly behind these lifesaving vaccines that you dislike) will get posted on this moderated blog forthwith, correct? After all, if you know you're right you should be encouraging debate, and not throwing me out of the room.
Posted by: Alsadius | December 11, 2011 at 03:46 AM
Thank you everyone for your support as well as the birthday wishes.
I definitely think we should try showing up regularly at Seth Mnookin's events and those like his to ask tough questions. I already posted a link to this at the end of my last article about Mnookin but I'm posting it here as well for interested readers - it's his current schedule of when and where he'll be speaking. The precise times and dates may not be complete, so you might want to try going on the website of locations where he'll be speaking for details. Also, he says he's still planning events, so keep an eye out for new listings:
I've said this before, and I'll say it again: We owe him many more visits.
Posted by: Jake Crosby | December 08, 2011 at 07:27 PM
Well done to you Jake and belated Happy Birthday.
Posted by: Joan Campbell | December 08, 2011 at 10:19 AM
Mnookin fan Dr. Judy Stone admits in Tweet that some members of audience were not happy to see Jake booted:
"...some in audience would have liked to hear both sides #PRIMR_AER11"
Posted by: Mnooklear attack epic fails | December 07, 2011 at 05:16 PM
Happy Belated Birthday Jake! Thank you for continuing your fight against the unethical and immoral likes of Mnookin and the rest of the gov't and drug industry vaccine injury denialists. Please know that every time you stand up at one of these conferences and speak truth to power you are also speaking for the hundreds of thousands of vaccine injured children and young adults who can not speak for themselves, like my 22 year old son who hasn't spoken a word in almost 20 years. You are a warrior Jake and the spirit and will of those that cannot speak for themselves are right there with you. Thanks again and keep up the great work.
Posted by: Denise Ferraro | December 07, 2011 at 05:07 PM
Mnookin has woven the Wakefield lies into the fabric(ation) of his life... the Emperor's New Clothes. He turned off the video so no one could see his factual nakedness revealed. Deftly done, Jake. You are a hero.
Posted by: nhokkanen | December 07, 2011 at 04:56 PM
VERY DISTURBING! It just goes to show how corrupt Mnookin, Straus and the rest of the Drug Industry cronies are!!! YUCK, no morals at all!
Posted by: CS | December 07, 2011 at 02:58 PM
Questions for discussion--sounds a bit like the question on the science exam that Dr. Wakefield mentioned in his book. Of course, there is only 1 way to answer correctly. It's amazing and very telling that these people must go to such lengths to discredit Dr.Wakefield. It's all mind-control.
Jake. they are trying to dismiss you as a pest, but you are so persistent and to the point, that they will eventually have to deal with you. I love your tactics. I think also, that you should have legal representation for what they did to you. Keep up the pressure. You are getting under their skin.
I get a good chuckle every time I read one of your posts. Happy Birthday a bit late.
Posted by: ct teacher | December 07, 2011 at 01:47 PM
Oh yeah. Be sure to save copies/evidence of any/all disparaging tweets. Especially Mnookin ones.
Posted by: HFAmomto3HFAgirls | December 07, 2011 at 01:16 PM
I dub thee Sir Jake Crosby Merck's-Bane. Thanks a lot Jake for keeping the pressure on and giving us something to smile about. You get your name etched in white marble in the Museum of Autism, in the Pitbulls of Autism Quadrangle. Its clear that our opponents have no scientific cards in their hand, - merely crafty, deceitful tactics.
Posted by: Cherry Sperlin Misra | December 07, 2011 at 11:34 AM
I'd like to add this: If the event Jake attended received any federal dollars they might be liable under the ADA. Ditto any of the speakers. It might still be possible to sue them. If not for actual money, then the discovery process might prove interesting...
Posted by: HFAmomto3HFAgirls | December 07, 2011 at 11:20 AM
It appears Mnookin put out the word to remove Jake within seconds of hearing his name, making the length of the question irrelevant.
Mnookin's Tweet is an obvious lie, claiming he was unable to respond. The long-winded, one-sided conversation came from Seth Mnookin who does not have Aspergers Syndrome.
A defamation lawyer may be more useful than a disability lawyer. Mnookin and PRIMR should be nervous about Mnookin's libelous words (that Jake had "disrupted past events") and the wrongful eviction that resulted from that lie.
Posted by: Sue M. | December 07, 2011 at 10:02 AM
Great idea Theresa re. bringing a lawyer!
Posted by: Jen | December 07, 2011 at 09:39 AM
"Are autistics a minority protected by civil liberties laws? I ask this in all seriousness. Did they violate your civil liberties by treating you thusly?"
HFAmomto3HFAgirls, you may be on to something there. Mnookin told Jake, "you’ve been into interrupting" and tweeted that "the person wanted to grandstand not talk."
The number one symptom listed on the Mayo Clinic's page about Asperger Syndrome is:
"Engaging in one-sided, long-winded conversations, without noticing if the listener is listening or trying to change the subject"
So if Mnookin's only complaint was about the delivery of Jake's question (that it was phrased in a long-winded manner without what Mnookin deemed to be appropriate pauses), he was basically discriminating against him. If Jake had had a stutter instead, would he have been thrown out for being "disruptive"? What about a lisp? What if he had had CP and needed to indicate his question with a touchboard or other assistive device?
Next time you go to one of these events, Jake, bring a disabilities lawyer. You have rights, and Mnookin just stomped all over them.
(Not that I am endorsing the Mayo Clinic's overall stance on Asperger Syndrome... The rest of that page is basically a promo for the drug industry.)
Posted by: Theresa O | December 07, 2011 at 08:21 AM
They are obviously terrified of you. And no wonder, you're just 23 and kick major butt. Keep going, Jake!
Happy Birthday. ;-)
Posted by: Michelle | December 07, 2011 at 05:54 AM
“…he [presumably Dr. Lewis] is not an expert on bowel pathology…the BMJ evaluated the data and found there was nothing there…it doesn’t even matter if Wakefield acted unethically, he’s still wrong…”
This was part of Mnookin's reply to Jake's question, a reply which Jake Crosby was not to be allowed to question or even listen to in its entirety!! John Stone's BMJ Rapid Response details David Lewis's rather distinguished career in some considerable detail. Here's a small part of it:-
"Numerous US Federal and State courts have accepted Dr Lewis as a qualified expert witness in medical malpractice cases including the interpretation of patients' medical records and laboratory results involving the collection of biopsies during colonoscopies. Dr Lewis has been recognised as an expert witness on colonic biopsy procedures. The United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia agreed Dr Lewis is the only scientist to have researched HPV infections associated with colonic biopsy procedures."
So, either Mnookin was completely ignorant, or lying though his teeth, or worse, TOLD to lie through his teeth!!
Jake, you are doing brilliantly. Happy birthday!!
Posted by: Jenny Allan | December 07, 2011 at 05:44 AM
Anyone at the conference who wasn't totally brainwashed must have seen right through Mnookin.
Posted by: Kristina | December 07, 2011 at 01:09 AM
Happy birthday a few days late and thank you for getting a few key facts into your question on the Wakefield case that most in the audience would probably never hear otherwise! Interesting that a "Questions for discussion" sheet was handed out prior. Did organizers actually expect to dictate the discussion, if not the thoughts, of those in attendance or were they afraid there wouldn't be any discussion of substance without guidance? Their treatment of you seems to suggest the former.
Posted by: Jeannette Bishop | December 07, 2011 at 12:55 AM
Occupy Pharma! Way to go, Jake. Sorry they behaved like such tools, but to use one of our most frequent movie quotes, "f&*% 'em, they was trash."
Posted by: Garbo | December 06, 2011 at 11:52 PM
Mnookin is way out of his depth in fielding any questions you may pose. He's a walking talking point without any comprehension of autism. Keep up the good work Jake and Happy Birthday
Posted by: Small prOffit | December 06, 2011 at 10:56 PM
Thanks for hanging in there and asking tough questions. It's pretty obvious Big Pharma and rabid vaccine supporters don't want to be challenged. Vaccines are a house of cards getting ready to get blown over...
Posted by: Jeffry John Aufderheide | December 06, 2011 at 10:06 PM
Jake, I truly respect your fortitude and wished more of us had it. Thank you.
Posted by: Kevin | December 06, 2011 at 10:02 PM
Happy Birthday my fellow Sagittarian! Way to go . . .
Posted by: Parent | December 06, 2011 at 09:55 PM
Happy Birthday Jake. Best not to take their lunch because it
is paid by the sponsor (Merck/Seth Mnookin).These free
lunches are used for promoting their own agenda and marketing their own products.I think they are afraid and
they want to be in control,they were hoping that nobody asks
uncomfortable questions that they are not able to answer honestly.This says a lot about them,poor communication can
back fire to them.Stay strong,positive and continue to seek the answers.
Posted by: oneVoice | December 06, 2011 at 09:22 PM
Are autistics a minority protected by civil liberties laws? I ask this in all seriousness. Did they violate your civil liberties by treating you thusly?
Would they have treated someone who was Black, Hispanic or Native American this way?
Would they have treated someone in a wheelchair the same way?
Posted by: HFAmomto3HFAgirls | December 06, 2011 at 08:27 PM
They cannot argue against you Jake!
You are too intelligent for them and they know it!
Keep up the good work!
Posted by: AussieMum | December 06, 2011 at 07:35 PM
Jake you have huge balls!! That's why I like you, because it just doesn't phase you. You have fire in your heart and ice in your veins. You're like a pittbull that doesn't let up! It is most enjoyable to see how you really make these people squirm and very uncomfortable. Happy Birthday!!
Posted by: Nathaniel Lane | December 06, 2011 at 06:45 PM
How dare you interupt thier worship of the vaccine god ! GO JAKE U ARE A HERO, AND A TRUE FRIEND OF THE AUTISM COMMUNITY
Posted by: JOHN P. CROUCH | December 06, 2011 at 06:37 PM
I think it's terrible when people are ejected from conferences for just asking questions.
Posted by: Link Rebee | December 06, 2011 at 05:53 PM
Well done Jake!
Posted by: owntruth | December 06, 2011 at 05:39 PM
On a popular moms forum a lot of moms throw down the CDC fall back spiel on vaccines. It is sad how truly ignorant they all are. How we are all gonna get horrible fatal diseases and die.
Posted by: Lisa Clark | December 06, 2011 at 05:36 PM
You scare the hell out of them Jake. Because you are far more intelligent than all of them, and you eloquently speak a truth that exposes them all for the criminals they are.
Great job. And by the way... happy Birthday too!
Posted by: Barry | December 06, 2011 at 05:06 PM
I respect what Jake did by asking his challenging but truthful question respectfully. I don't respect the occupiers on Wallstreet that want everybody else to pay for their college, etc. while many of them do criminal and indecent acts instead of working.
Posted by: Lori | December 06, 2011 at 04:51 PM
THANK YOU JAKE!
Posted by: Casey O | December 06, 2011 at 04:38 PM
Happy belated birthday, Jake!
Please consider it the highest compliment that a bunch of buffoons didn't want such a highly educated, intelligent, and decent human being (namely, you) among them. They are not worthy of being in your presence.
Posted by: Not an MD | December 06, 2011 at 04:23 PM
What wimp Mnooken is. Out of his depth. I bet the people left wondered about it!
Posted by: jen | December 06, 2011 at 03:41 PM
The guy's a goon!
Congratulations, Jake, on surviving the goonish mnooklear attack.
Posted by: Mark Struthers | December 06, 2011 at 01:57 PM
Jake, when you get to your next "Autism group" meeting,
you will get a piece of cake and a proper birthday song.
Posted by: cmo | December 06, 2011 at 01:54 PM
Inspiring to read this. I'd like to see someone from the autism community show up AT EVERY EVENT LIKE THIS. A great forum to tell the truth!
Anne Dachel, Media
Posted by: Anne McElroy Dachel | December 06, 2011 at 01:45 PM
Great Jake they can run but they can`t hide...when your on the case
Posted by: Angus Files | December 06, 2011 at 01:16 PM
Jake survived a Mnooklear Attack!
Posted by: DownWitTheSickness | December 06, 2011 at 12:27 PM
Why is Seth Mnookin talking instead of Dr. Lewis? Same reason Brian Deer is instead of the MDs in the UK. The Medical community is hiding behind these guys who they have cherry picked because they are gullible and willing to earn a big handsome buck by being deceptive to support "the greater good."
"Wink-wink, hush-hush, it pays good and benefits society. Now run along and say what we tell you to say, write what we tell you to write and the money will keep coming. And if someone in the crowd stumps you with a question, here's a button that will immediately produce a technical difficulty. We'll be there to coach you thru how to handle it. We've got your back....."
But really now, isn't it obvious that in the end, Mnookin and Deer will be the first guys to fall and lots of finger pointing will ensue and all those who are paying them today will trash them in a heartbeat to save themselves.
Fortunately Mnookin won't be alone in the fire pit of public disdain and flogging for long. The pharma and public health execs who were and are in a position to do something to curtail vaccine-induced brain injuries will soon join them for many long days of reckoning perhaps for the rest of their lives behind bars.
Posted by: Mnookin pushed the panic button | December 06, 2011 at 12:26 PM
Thanks for occupying them... I hope you are sharing your story with the occupiers on wallstreet.
Posted by: wondering why not | December 06, 2011 at 12:10 PM
You have balls, Jake. Congratulations!
Posted by: black and white cat | December 06, 2011 at 11:54 AM
Just found this, fyi:
"According to the manufacturer, Varivax–Merck chicken pox vaccine (Varicella Virus Live), contains L-monosodium glutamate and hydrolyzed gelatin, both of which contain processed free glutamic acid (MSG) which causes brain lesions in young laboratory animals, and causes endocrine disturbances like obesity and reproductive disorders later in life. It would appear that most, if not all, live virus vaccines contain some ingredient(s) that contains MSG."
Posted by: Carol | December 06, 2011 at 11:23 AM
It's incredibly humorous and ironic that someone who proposes to be science based as Seth Mnookin claims to be would evict someone who doesn't agree with their point of view. If I recall, the septic...I mean "skeptic" community WELCOMES descent.
I recall them all being up in arms not too long ago about Ken Reibel being kicked out of the AutOne conference for breaking the rules. They claimed that the AutOne conference must have something to hide if they would kick him out for that. In fact, Orac and his brown-nosers went on at length, ad nauseum, about how septics...I mean "skeptics" would NEVER do something like that.
So tell me...what does good ol' Sethy-poo have to hide?
Posted by: j-insanity | December 06, 2011 at 10:58 AM
If Dr. Lewis isn't an "expert" (but IS a real DOCTOR), what exactly is Seth Mnookin an expert in that Merck would have him come to a meeting where these is Q&A? The man wrote a book and isn't "anything". He has no credentials. Did not go to med school. He doesn't even have a reason to be at the table with the likes of Jake. Jake actually has a reason to be there as he's effected by the disorder. *I* have more reason to be at that table than Mnookin does as the mother of a child effected by this disorder. I must be completely missing something somewhere if this man is the best and most brightest the "pro vaccine" and Merck groups can offer. I'm not saying I'm the brightest pickle in the bunch but *I* have MORE time logged on reading and comprehending studies than that man ever will as I started years before he was even on the scene. While this man was doing drugs and robbing family members, I had my nose to the grind stone. Trying to save MY CHILD. He's a rodent. Plain and simple.
Posted by: rileysmom | December 06, 2011 at 10:51 AM
When did this happen to our country?
How did this type of behavior begin here in America?
What happen to the well known motto "I may disagree with what you say, but I will give my life for you to say it"
Now they bann us from a website or meetings like this.
Not because we verbally attack; because we don't!
Not because we rant and rave; because we don't!
But because of the truth!!!
In order to get the truth in edge wise some very compassionate people had to make a website just for-- not idealists, or radicals, but grieving - worried parents and family members of sick people.
Our Republic cannot/willnot stand with such behavior!
There should have been people sitting there on the opposite side of you, Jake, in this meeting that objected to you being lead out. They did not stand up for the truth, but worse they did not stand up for the ideas in which this country was built.
We have soldiers dying on the battlefields, away from families in this country. We might as well call them home and tell them that our great Republic just might be dead!
Jake a hard lesson at age 23!(happy birthday anyway);yet you give me hope because you are a soldier, warrior, and a Patriot in which this country was founded.
Posted by: Benedetta | December 06, 2011 at 10:46 AM
Great work Jake,
It was nice you at least got a free ? lunch...
The meeting seemed to be run in their old "Hitler-style" format.
I do not know how you could be any more polite. Anti-vax heckler? I don't think so...
Posted by: cmo | December 06, 2011 at 10:31 AM
Me thinks they doth protest too much...or, me thinks they protest because they can hear their bank accounts dwindling...or, me thinks they doth protest too much because truth has a certain ring to it...or, me thinks they doth protest too much because they will appear foolish and unscientific, or, me thinks they doth protest too much because they realize, they can't hold this lie down any longer...sigh...protest this Jake...protest it until they hear us...until this insanity is stopped. Be our voice, for the voiceless. For all the moms who cry in their hands everyday, for all those kids who need justice, for all of us who don't have the abilities to go to those "meetings". I so hate that phrase anti vaxers, when in reality, we are anti lying about a known drug which carries inherit risks...for the predisposed...but let's not worry about that, we are just cattle, er, chattle, er, the herd... ah yes, we are pesky troublemakers to them...and good on us for that.
Posted by: kathy blanco | December 06, 2011 at 10:28 AM
From PRIM&R's Core Values:
3. Diversity – We value and promote the diversity of people, ideas, and opinions.
6. Respect – We show consideration and courtesy towards all people and their perspectives.
From PRIM&R's Vision:
(PRIM&R) will play a central role in promoting dialogue and debate.
Posted by: LOL | December 06, 2011 at 10:10 AM
Jake - Great job, and I wouldn't sweat getting thrown out. Anyone who would attend an event starring that fringe fruitcake has already made up their mind anyway, one way or the other.
Although, if you have the time and/or resources, go after anyone who reports you as a "heckler", legally. You followed the structure of the event, waited your turn for Q&A, and respectfully asked a question. Reporting anything else, such as depicting you as some wild-eyed heckler, would be a form of slander. That's just my 2 cents.
Posted by: AL | December 06, 2011 at 10:02 AM
Just seen this
Mercury is a well known neurotoxin that can induce people to become senstive to light.
What would Seth think of the follow up to this NEW finding?
Posted by: John Fryer | December 06, 2011 at 09:57 AM
How does an idiot recognise qualified people as more idiotic than them? Now that would be a disruptive question to ask an idiot.
Posted by: John Fryer | December 06, 2011 at 09:54 AM
How these people hid behind cliches and cant. This is a poster from a European vaccine conference yesterday:
All they can do is re-educate people in the true religion.
Posted by: John Stone | December 06, 2011 at 09:40 AM
A person who asks a thought provoking question in this country (any really) in these times is considered an anarchist. You are in good company Jake.
Dr. Bernie Rimland
Dr. Allan Clark
Dr. Boyd Haley etc etc.
BTW - Happy Birthday!
Posted by: Deboran | December 06, 2011 at 09:13 AM
Thank you Jake-
Must be embarrassing for Mnookin to read he is being openly mocked at the conference by attendees. Do you have any more notes or recollections on how Mnookin was perceived by other audience members? Any tweets in your favor?
When Scientific American picks up the Nature story that Wakefield perhaps did not commit research fraud, Monookin has to feel a little isolated and desperate. He doubles down, instead of considering new evidence.
The biggest and most egregious lie repeated by Mnookin is that those who have witnessed first hand vaccine caused developmental regression are "anti vaccine."
Posted by: ottoschnaut | December 06, 2011 at 09:11 AM
There had to have been some people there who recognized what was going on for what it was. They may not have said anything out of fear of losing their jobs, grants, funding, etc., but they know what's going on, they will remember this, and the tide IS slowly turning.
Imagine a similar situation at say, a Nazi rally in the 1940's.
1940's Jake: "How can you accuse the Jews of such things when the reality is that they have not done any of the terrible things you say?"
Nazi Seth Mnookin Reaction: "Get the heckler out of here, now!!...we have evaluated these people...even if they have not done any terrible things, they are still subhuman..."
Posted by: Taximom | December 06, 2011 at 09:07 AM
Also I think Seth Mnookin is a coward.
Posted by: Ginger Taylor | December 06, 2011 at 09:07 AM
When people are right about something, or want to be sure that they are right about something, they beg for debates (heated or not). They want every aspect of an issues turned over again and again so that they can get at the truth. That way if they are wrong about something, they can lean so quickly, adjust their position/approach, and be as right as they can be as fast as they can be.
When they are wrong about something, and know it, they throw challengers out of the room. When they hate correction and learning, they shut down debate. When it is about them, their ambition, ego and goals, they may even lie to keep control of the conversation to prevent truth from coming to light.
Lovers of truth love discussion and debate. They are the last people in the room and have to be reminded to leave because the cleaning crew needs to come in. They leave a discussion with an opponent with some form of the question, "what is your email address... can I send you a piece on this from.... have you heard the lecture by..."
And anyone who truly wants to do the right thing, for matters of science and medicine and public policy to be accurate and effective and compassionate, can see the difference between lovers of truth and lovers of themselves as plain as day. I am guessing there were not that many people in the room that were fooled by his accusation of you being disruptive.
..And being escorted from the room by one of the Dolores Umbridges of the world is no shame, it is practically a point of honor.
'If you don't have a badge, you can't ask a question.'
Thank you Ms. Umbridge, whoever you are, for protecting the world from unauthorized questions from unauthorized people. God knows where we would be if just anyone impacted by Mr. Mnookin's terrible writing was able to challenge him.
Best just to declare them some category of non-person on the basis of... well whatever you can think of at the moment... and hit the eject button on them. We are all safer because of you.
Jake, if you are not getting any flack, you are not over the target.
Posted by: Ginger Taylor | December 06, 2011 at 09:01 AM
Jake...You are 'THE MAN' !!!! Happy belated birthday!
Posted by: DownWitTheSickness | December 06, 2011 at 08:09 AM
Now if 50-100 others had your back at the next Mnookin appearance.....
Posted by: bensmyson | December 06, 2011 at 07:25 AM
Happy Birthday Jake!
Asking a question makes you a heckler? Wow!
And Mnookin is full of shit in his tweet that he would have liked to respond to you. If that was his true intention when you said who you were he wouldn't have accused you of interrupting and disrupting in the past. By doing that he only alerted the onsite security staff as to you being a "troublemaker" which was a lie anyways. What a punk.
Good work Jake.
Posted by: Andrea | December 06, 2011 at 07:17 AM
Jake, you are the first mover and shaker of Occupy Pharma, a movement being born on the weekend you were booted. Congratulations, thank you, and happy birthday!
Posted by: Dan E. Burns | December 06, 2011 at 06:50 AM
Jake .. as my college age grandchildren say about someone they hold in high-esteem .. "you are the man".
I had to stifle a giggle when reading the "loaded question" that asked attendees to describe what "Seth" has written in his book about the honorable Dr. Wakefield. The last time I heard this type of "loaded question" was in high school .. when I was required to give a "book report" parroting what the author had written .. so teachers could be fairly certain that I had actually read the book.
In any event Jake .. hold your head high .. having already achieved something that I will now add to my own growing "bucket list" .. to get personally thrown out of an "Advancing Ethical Research Conference" .. supposedly held to advance "Public Responsibility in Medicine and Research" .. for merely asking an author a question regarding on-going "public responsibility in medicine and research".
My friend, if it were not such a desperate act .. committed by truly desperate people .. it would be fodder for a Saturday Night "LIVE" skit.
Posted by: Bob Moffitt | December 06, 2011 at 06:43 AM
Pathetic as usual. What is interesting is the sheer incoherence of the response - they can't make up their mind about anything. Jake asks an awkward question and confusion reigns. The event is deemed disrupted because Mnookin can't answer a question!!! Meanwhile the drug industry continue to depend on Mnookin, Deer, Godlee etc for the defence of their products: how much longer before this charade falls apart completely?
Posted by: John Stone | December 06, 2011 at 05:59 AM