Rep. Dan Burton Calls for Autism Hearings - Take Action!
Autism is National Crisis We Cannot Ignore by Beth Clay, The Clay Report

NPR Airs Insights from New Research into Autism

Radio micBy Anne Dachel

On Apr 11, 2012, NPR aired the panel: Insights from New Research into Autism

The promo said, “The diagnosis of autism in the U.S. has almost doubled in the past decade. Join guest host Susan Page to discuss new research on factors that might contribute to this complex condition.” .

“The 52-minute program covers possible causes of autism, how to identify and classify autism and how to treat it.”

The panel included:

Susan Page of USA Today 

Thomas Insel director of NIMH and head of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee

Jennifer Walsh mother of a four-year-old with autism 

Amy Harmon from the New York Times (See my recent story on Harmon and autism: Drafted into The Autism Wars)

Lauren Kenworthy, Children Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders

The first topic was the stunning new rate of one in 88.

Harmon: The higher rates don't necessarily mean that the actual incidence of autism is increasing.  It may, and many experts believe that some portion of that increase is the result of environmental factors that have not been pinned down.  The director of the CDC in a phone call with reporters last month made a point to say that the increase could be entirely due to better detection.  One reason he went out of his way to make that point is because in the past, the increase in these rates have led to a lot of speculation about the role of environmental factors that had not necessarily any basis in scientific evidence.  Like the idea that autism is caused by childhood vaccines, which has been thoroughly debunked. Even though it has, it's led to a serious public health problem in places where parents are refusing to get their kids vaccinated and there have been outbreaks of measles and whooping cough.  ...There may be environmental factors involved. We don't know what they are, but some large part of the increase is due to the fact that doctors and teachers and parents are getting better at recognizing the hallmark traits of autism and identifying them.

Harmon on the rate: It is a high number and I would say that one other factor in the higher number has to do with the fact that in the mid 1990s, there was a broadening of the diagnostic criteria for autism...  Autism is really a wide of course, the number has gotten bigger as a result of that.

Insel on the rate: So this takes us to a pretty high rate, if you think about this being nearly one percent, or in the case of boys, one in 58, something like that. (He was in 54) So these are high numbers relative to juvenile diabetes, it's about three times more common.  Asthma I think is in that general range.  Important to remember that while we're very sensitive to this increase, this isn't entirely unique.  We've seen about a three fold increase in food allergies in the last decade and marked increased in asthma and juvenile diabetes.  You've probably seen those numbers where pediatric bi-polar disorder went up forty fold in a decade, so as Amy suggests, sometimes there are diagnostic trends that can really drive numbers in a very big way. But that's not to say that we can just rule this out or dismiss this as being just increased detection or increased ascertainment.  Very real possibility here that there are more children affected. Until we have evidence to the contrary, it's best to assume that.

Kenworthy on the increase: The increase in awareness is striking.  There've really been major improvements in the way we go out look for children with autism.  Pediatricians have been told by their professional society that they need to screen for autism in babies, and that's really important.  ...Fifteen years ago, everybody who made it to us was sort of a more classic, clear case of autism.  Now, about half the kids that come through our clinic, we don't diagnose with autism.  ...Children are getting assessed and they're getting the services they need as early as we possibly can manage to identify them and provide those services. 

Walsh on her son: He had met all the milestones and [the doctor] wasn't overly concerned,...  He had met and exceeded his goals, he was talking up a storm, and they really didn't think that the therapy was necessary anymore.  ...He kind of kept to himself and was distracted during circle time and things like that. ...He's very functioning...

And how's he doing at four?

Walsh: He's absolutely just the most amazing, incredible child you could ever could imagine having.  We've had a lot of therapy... He's in a mainstream preschool where he gets a little extra support when he needs it.  But he's absolutely thriving.  ....

Insel on narrowing the definition of autism:  “The first point to make is that this is not one single, simple disorder.  Sometimes I think we should be talking about the 'autisms.' ...

Kenworthy on the DSM 5:  When we talk about narrowing the definition, we are excluding a group of children that really benefit from being understood as having these core social and also repetitive behavior deficits. And they need treatment for that. ...

Walsh on the DSM 5: That's of great concern to me.... I'm definitely concerned about services that are going to be available to him....

Harmon brought up adults with autism. 

Insel:That has been some press report that actually suggest [some children will lose services], ...but that's probably not the case.  The numbers aren't going to change that much....

 Why is it more common in boys?

Insel:  “We don't know. We really don't know. (Insel said it’s been like that for the last 50 years, but we don't know why.)”

Kenworthy:  “We know autism is a genetic disorder.  It's one of the most highly heritable disorder of these early developmental disorders. ...

 On the environment:

Insel: We don't yet have a major environmental factor that's driving any sort of an increase in numbers.  People who have looked, have looked for many of the potential smoking guns, don't find them.  Where most of the research is going now is looking for prenatal exposures and trying to figure out what may be happening very early on, probably in the second trimester...


Mom said her son was no autistic when he was born.  She brought up dental amalgams. chemicals in the home, and the toxic amount of aluminum in vaccines. "The FDA says 20 mcg is a toxic dose and if the child gets all the vaccines at two months, they'll receive 1875 mcg of aluminum."

Harmon: [Studies] have indicated that there is no such link. These most recent numbers, if there was any lingering doubt, should speak to that fact, because ...the theory was that thimeral, an additive in vaccines, was responsible and thimerosal has been removed from virtually all vaccines ... you would have expected those numbers to go down. ...In fact, they've gone up.

Kenworthy: Talked about how painful it is see a child "appear to descend into autism."   But it's all just a coincidence because we just don't see the signs of autism until right around when they're vaccinated. 

Insel on regressive autism:Something that would affect the development of language in not going to be apparent in the first six months, maybe not in the first year. 

Insel talked about recognizing the bio-markers as early as possible.

Walsh said her son had problems as an infant. This is the way he was born and it's not anything that's happened since.


The next phone caller speculated on the possibility that autistic people in the past just stayed at home.  Single family homes and everyone working means that parents today have to have services for autistic kids that extended families provided in the past. 

Then Insel cited the British questionnaire survey that supposedly found a one percent autism rate among adults. “It does suggest that some of what you’re suggesting is possible, that actually there’s been a lot of autism around for a long time.  It’s just been called something else or hasn’t been called anything at all.”

What happens to all these people when they become adults?

Kenworthy:  “The data to date has been very discouraging….Less than a quarter… of young adults with autism—and average or better intelligence—so bright people, were able to function independently.  The vast majority of kids were dependent on their parents.”

Harmon: “Once you leave high school, there’s no guarantee of services.”. 

Walsh: “I think so much of it is about increasing awareness and acceptance among society so that  people who are hiring become more aware that …a young adult who may not give the greatest interview,… may be light years ahead anyone else you could possibly interview. … Everyone is different and has something different and  unique to offer.”

Insel: ”If you start to do the math, it looks like out of  the 70,000, 000 children in this country, if one in 88 is effected, ten years from now  we’re going to be looking at a very powerful social challenge, which is, how do we provide, not only employment and housing but other kinds of support…  We need to be thinking much more carefully and much more aggressively about what the services are going to look like in 2022.”

“But remember this is a spectrum and you’re going to have some children, who at age eighteen are still not toilet trained, and still don’t have language, and are still functioning at a very very primitive level.  What happens to that population?”

In response to one phone call on how autism is generational, Insel said, “Many of the kids who get this label are severely, severely disabled. These are children who will spend much of their lives in institutions because they cannot be managed in a family.  Many of them have self-injurious behavior. They will bite themselves, they will bang their heads until they bleed.  We’re talking about a disorder which in its more severe forms, is really profoundly disabling. That’s the piece of it that’s also increasing, so there’s every reason to take this very seriously.”

What we learned

 It’s amazing that people can continue this type of performance in the face of all the sick and disabled children who are changing the childhood landscape everywhere.

Among the participants was Amy Harmon of the NY Times. I recently wrote about her coverage of the autism epidemic in this piece.

Autism mom Jennifer Walsh was included telling us that she believed that her son was born with autism.

There was an incredible amount of repetition, denial, and professed ignorance in this talk. I had to ask myself why they even bothered to air the discussionl since they had nothing to say that could possibly matter to people looking for answers.

My main interest was listening to Dr. Insel. He’s the top national expert. He’s the head of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee created by Congress to deal with the epidemic. He’s supposed to have the answers. Sadly, he never does.

In the comments he made, he had something for everyone and none of it made any sense.  Insel was right there telling us that autism is increasing among our kids but so are lots of other health problems. He’s still scratching his head over what the latest rate means. He acknowledged that there’s a real possibility that more kids do have autism.  He dismissed regressive autism, and he went into great detail about how prenatal exposure to toxins was to blame for autism.

Just how long are people are going to tolerate Insel’s failure to ever know anything for sure about autism? Amy Harmon took the lead denying a link between vaccines and autism, while Insel carefully avoided taking part in that part of the discussion. (And I’d like to point out to Harmon that the lady on the phone was talking about ALUMINUM in vaccines. Harmon’s response focused only on thimerosal, and the word mercury was never used.)

Insel repeated the “same old, same old” about autism. Most of it was about all the things he still can’t figure out, that included knowing if the increase is real, knowing why boys are more often affected than girls, knowing what the possible environmental triggers might be, or what the genetic factors are, (Anyone else talking about being completely unable to do their job would be expected to apologize, but that thought never seemed to have occurred to Insel.)

It was evident to anyone listening that Insel talked like he believed autism has always been around, just called something else, at the same time, he was firm about what the future holds. We should all be worried. There are a lot disabled adults coming and we have nothing for them. While he didn’t use the words EPIDEMIC, CRISIS, or EMERGENCY, he made a point about the need for jobs and services. He also didn’t pretend that all the children with autism are high functioning like the other speakers did. He knows there are lots of them who are severely disabled.

If the host were any kind of a real journalist, she’d have asked Insel why the IACC calls autism a “public health care emergency,” but he never uses the word emergency when talking about autism.

The truth is, Insel knows what’s happening. He knows how bad things are, despite his comments about finding autistic adults in Britain. In the end, he’s done nothing and he’s proud of it. And what he said on NPR was not what he said at NIH and MIT in 2009 and 2010.

On May, 2010 at NIH, Thomas Insel made these comments:

"Eighty percent of the people with a diagnosis of autism [in the U.S.] are under the age of eighteen."

“If you look at those numbers, the increase and recognize how many of those kids will become adults, we ...also need to be thinking about how we prepare the nation for a million people who may need significant amounts of services as they are no longer cared for by their parents or as their parents are no longer around."

In Dec 2009, he spoke at MIT. There he said, “In the 1980s,...I remember having to look far and wide to actually find a child with autism."

"I'd never seen any children with autism through all of my training."

"I didn't actually know anyone that I trained with who'd actually seen a child with autism."

He also said he'd seen the data from PEDIATRICS magazine putting the current rate at one in 90, but he admitted, "I'm not sure what to do with these data."

"I don't know of any data quite like this over a 20 year period which shows this striking increase."

Insel said we don't know what's driving this. We know it's not because of people who were labeled something else. He said it's not diagnostic substitution. .

"I said before this isn't just genetics... There have to be environmental factors."

"We have barely been able to scratch the surface."

"There are something like 80,000 potential toxicants."

So which speaker is the real Thomas Insel? Is it the person on NPR who has a dozen different positions on autism and an answer for everyone? Is it the expert at MIT and NIH telling us that things are a real national disaster in the making? And why does this man have the position of authority that he does when he seems too paralyzed to do anything?

Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism. Subscribe to her news site at



Canada MOm:
Like all human beings sometimes I get messed up on my thinking.
But on this one I am very sure though, that spending an hour one on one- with someone and putting no demands on them such as cutting that hedge, to doing a math a problem will lead to no understanding of the problems that exist.

I also know that at one time PDD-NOS and Aspergers were not included in the autism spectrum. Then everyone still did not understood autism at it's very worse - "Rain Man"
servants is all they knew.

You are wasting your time with this one. You are part of a large group of people that have had their kid's brains injuried. And if people out there think that PDD-NOS and Aspergers is so great - just wait till they have them in a situation were they are demanding performance.

Canada mom

@ Barry "'We are fighting a public perception that is very skewed and entirely unhelpful to children like my son.' And I guess I'm a little unclear how you claiming that Canadian doctors are diagnosing autism in children who don't have it, does anything but feed that skewed perception."

My point is this: the general public is clearly not worried about autism (or any of the other increasingly common struggles that kids face that are obviously connected). Even the pregnant EAs in my son's class aren't really worried! How can that be?

One of the reasons is that they believe the epidemic numbers are mostly the result of more awareness and better diagnosis. One of the reasons they believe that is because the media tells them so. But a big reason they believe the media slant on this is because their own experience reinforces that view. People meet far, far more children who are very mildly affected than people like my son. Outside of my autism-related volunteer work, even I meet far more children who are so mildly affected yet still diagnosed that it is stunning to me they have the same diagnosis.

I started teaching high school 23 years ago. I taught kids back then who are very similar to kids I see now getting diagnoses (kids I spend a couple hours with at the pool, or share a trampoline with for an hour--so not just a quick glance). My experience is not unique, and so when the media chants 'better diagnosis and more awareness' people look into their own histories and what they see now and believe. I can tell you quite honestly that if my view of autism was informed by the kids that I have met in my daily life and not by my own son and the children of my biomed friends, I would not be alarmed about the rates.

And if, in response to this 'more awareness' view, we simply deny the fact that there is overdiagnosis, misdiagnosis (and of course there is also underdiagnosis) then these people don't think we have any information relevant to them. Our message needs to be precise, nuanced and forceful.

Of course, it is difficult to create a message like this when the vocabulary we've been handed is anything but precise and nuanced. We're dealing with a spectrum disorder that is diagnosed entirely on behaviours and labelled with fluid terminology: autistic disorder, Asperger's, PDD-NOS, autism, ASD. Yet, no matter how you look at it--those behaviours themselves, testable biomarkers, prospects for the future, quality of life, visibility in the media--some kids are much, much more negatively affected than others.

Those kids tend to disappear pretty easily from the public's mind for the reasons I've stated (plus more I won't get into here like armchair diagnosing people like Gates, Einstein, Yeats, etc). Allowing that to happen is obviously a moral wrong, but it is clearly an inappropriate strategy for trying to change things.

And one final note to be more clear about my own stance: I am just as alarmed about the widespread 'mildly' affected children as any biomed parent (about not only autism but all the ODD, OCD, ADHD, LDs, fibromyalgia, peanut allergies, asthma, etc etc). I don't for a second believe that their lives should be so difficult or that this is a genetic problem. I know about the widespread toxicity, gut problems, immune problems. I am not dismissing any of this: I am talking about the specific issue of autism diagnosis and what the public makes of that.


Amy Harmon - the worst autism reporter in America. She makes Gina Kolata look smart in her AIDS reporting.

Grow up Amy. You are way out of your league. NO evidence of environmental factors in autism? How much do they PAY you to spit up such dregs of pablum?


Barry and Canada Mom;
I recently watched a U tube with Paul Offit up in front of a bunch of folk. He had his son with him. Dr. Offit is a very arrogant man - makes your blood boil that some one could be so heartless.
Anyway, I made a comment on here that there was that arrogant _____ an is son was okay.

And some one replied (some one that would know) That just because the young man looked normal does not mean he is!!!!

That is very true, looking in is not the same as living day by day with someone and knowing the things that they cannot do, and their problems.



I don't know if your a troll or not. All I know is that your post seemed to imply Canada is flush with kids who's diagnoses were handed out willy nilly. As a Canadian, I just wanted to make it clear to readers from other nations, that my experience in no way supports that claim.

One thing we do agree on though, is that " We are fighting a public perception that is very skewed and entirely unhelpful to children like my son." And I guess I'm a little unclear how you claiming that Canadian doctors are diagnosing autism in children who don't have it, does anything but feed that skewed perception.


Children with autism have been found to have a family history of auto immune and neuropschyiatric disease yet despite this noone is suggesting pre-screening these babies and putting them on a safer alternate schedule prior to getting shots. That is criminal!


Association of Family History of Autoimmune Diseases and Autism Spectrum Disorders- Pediatrics


This is so disgusting, but not unexpected from PBS, who gets some of it's funding from our government, so DUH! They're being funded to express the government's line. I am a grandmother of one not born with it, and I urge everyone who loves their country to fight for Dan Burton's public hearings, and to fight to keep the internet free.

Canada mom


"I live in Canada too, and I have come to know several autistic children in my rural area. And not a single one of them fits that description. It's quite remarkable that you would know several of them, and also know so much about their medical histories "

Barry, if you're trying to imply somehow that I am a troll spreading misinformation about autism diagnoses, you're wrong. I am incredibly active in the biomed community and have been for years. I meet a lot of people, and the majority of those I meet are unacquainted with kids as affected as mine. They think that autism is something much like what the ND crowd would have us believe--a different way of thinking.

They think this partly because of how the media likes to portray autism, but that portrayal is often supported by the kids they meet who have a diagnosis. And I meet these kids too. When I take my son to the local autism activities, most of these kids are interacting, talking, following instructions. The vast majority of time, my son is by far the most affected child there. I know how much biomed is done in my community. I know how long the waitlists are for therapy. There are many many kids who are lightly affected and/or getting a diagnosis that makes little sense to me.

If we want the community at large to care about the same things we care about and to be as alarmed as we are about kids like mine, we need to acknowledge that what they tend to be experiencing is a far cry from what my family is experiencing. Ask yourself: these children that you know who are profoundly affected--how many of the community at large know these kids? My guess would be very few. These children are often 'hidden' because it is hard for them to be in public, because their parents are exhausted, because their lives revolve around trying to get healthy and not break dancing classes. We are fighting a public perception that is very skewed and entirely unhelpful to children like my son.

Chris Smith

Another reason I will not support NPR with ONE DAMNED dime. They continue to provide the most biased one sided least imaginative coverage while spouting that they are so objective and multi-faceted.

When will NPR actually include anybody from our side to put up a stiff resistance to the "official line"?

Thanks again for nothing, NPR.


"I am sorry, how does this help? How do you decide whether a newborn baby (or a two month old one) is an extrovert or an introvert?"
I don't have all the answers, but we need to start looking somewhere, don't we? We need to find some common ground in those who are more vulnerable to brain injuries from environmental exposures, including too many, or repeat, or unnecessary for everyone vaccinations. We need to be able to find a way to somehow identify the "canaries in the coal mine". Perhaps, the answers lie in the structures and biochemistry of the brain.

"Should the extroverts be vaccinated to protect the introverts?"
It could be that introverts don't require as many vaccinations to acquire immunity, since their brains are actually structured/wired differently (seen on brain scans), than those of extroverts and process incoming information/stimuli differently also. Blood titers to measure immunity might be an option. Isn't that what we have been saying all along, that one size does not fit all; that we are not all cookie cut-outs of one another?

For Rachael


I am sorry, how does this help? How do you decide whether a newborn baby (or a two month old one) is an extrovert or an introvert? Should the extroverts be vaccinated to protect the introverts?


Benedetta said: "Well Rachel; Maybe you are right, but I don't see it that away- to me it is more of energy krebs cycle thingey, but really that is the least of our problems right now."
It's funny that you mentioned energy and krebs cycle ... I read this article (linked below) along with many other articles, on how introverts and extroverts use energy differently; how it is hard if you are an introvert to juggle social situations and maintain energy levels. I wonder if biological differences in neuroanatomy and neurochemistry make introverts more vulnerable to mitochondria dysfunction etc?

"An extrovert can be dead tired after work then go out on the town with friends and be able to run around all night with increasing energy. The introvert, however, is probably the first person to leave the party – if they even make it to the party at all."


Joy B.,
Yes, I agree that on the whole, only R. will release the mankind from corporate evil. But in the meantime, let’s continue at least to save as many babies as we can from this horrific corporate made children's holocaust.

Joy B.

veritas: Very good about point about evolution - it may indeed come to that. I guess my point, in general, is that if the high financial and war criminals (of recent time!) aren't being held to account, why/how would the high priests of medicine (who have nearly the same financial sway in government) ?

I absolutely agree with a boycott and all the hard legwork that goes into its implementation, don't get me wrong. It's just that we are fighting in a fixed fight - a good example is exactly the "internet freedom" which you mention - yes, a boycott initially worked, but only because the industry itself got involved. Lo and behold, only a few months later, the push resumes. CISPA! Which looks to be succeeding, so far. See, when a push comes, industry is accommodated, not "people".

And these recent "successes" are recognized as concrete absurdities which nearly everyone opposes, at least in spirit, not some obscure medical issue(as those on high would have us believe of course) that remain cloaked in controversy. What I would compare it to is Global Warming - everyone sees it happening, why haven't the worst offenders who contribut to it even been slightly restrained?!

Also, all of our internet and communications CAN be taken away at the drop of a hat, if some "national emergency" were to occur. See how precarious it all is? I still recommend fighting, I guess in these past few years I've just become more of a realist. The other "R" word....might just have to happen, after all.


Well Rachel; Maybe you are right, but I don't see it that away- to me it is more of energy krebs cycle thingey, but really that is the least of our problems right now.

From listening to this radio broadcast;
It sounds like we all need to join together in one big commune and buy a lot of farm land.

But I must warn ye - farm equipment is very dangerous, takes a lot of patience and a lot of training to use, hard on the ears, causes high anxiety to both the person trying to learn how to use it and the one trying to teach it to them-- and it takes energy a lot of energy.

Hummmm kids sitting down in their parent's basement in the suburbs/urbane/city/gated communities-----
My kids live out in the country and they still sit and just play video games - it takes effort to get them up and out and doing instead of sitting. .


Joy B:

I think the boycott can work. If the people can organize boycott and mass protests (short of revolutions) around freedom of internet or ACTA issues, surely they can organize around toxic vaccines as well. If we activate all social contact channels available to us, we may reach a sizable population of mothers. Of course, there always will be naive, uneducated mothers, who will listen to toxic pediatricians and will unknowingly cripple or kill their children with poisonous vaccines, but this is something we have no control over.

It is a matter of evolutionary survival of the smartest, who learn quickly enough from experiences of others that they can’t trust corrupted to the bone medical establishment. We must nevertheless do our best to inform as many young mothers as we can, knowing that the decisions will be always theirs. We must also demand severe punishment for the pharma-medical criminals for destroying millions of American and world children. In severity, this crime is on pair with Holocaust, but it is more devious.


"... I meet kids who have a diagnosis of autism (this is in Canada) and I am stunned that they received it. These are kids who can play with others, speak very well, listen to instructions, are taking breakdancing classes, etc. These are not kids who have received interventions at any remarkable level, biomedical or otherwise....."


I live in Canada too, and I have come to know several autistic children in my rural area. And not a single one of them fits that description. It's quite remarkable that you would know several of them, and also know so much about their medical histories


Benedetta: My last comment is for you also.


For commenter @7:18pm: Introversion is often misunderstood, even by introverts. Carl Jung defined introversion as the trait of having a deep, rich, inner life that is at least as, or equally as important as your outer life. People think of "extroversion" in terms of socializing. Some introverts do indeed like to socialize, though maybe not as often as extroverts. This still doesn't mean that they are not introverts.

Introversion does not mean you are shy, or that you don't like people, but it does mean that you have a lower baseline for arousal and are more affected by (noise, sounds, smells and stimuli of all kinds) something that is hardwired in the brain from birth. Brain scans have found introverts have more brain activity in general specifically in the frontal lobes. To see how different the brains of introverts and extroverts really are go to my link of studies posted at 5:21pm.

Joy B.

Let's get to the heart of things. There is no accountability in the system. Not in regards to the economy, foreign or domestic policy. And there hasn't been for some time. Neverending war, for-profit privatization, and a sick populace and environment are only the symptoms. This is not something that can be worked out through conventional channels. It will be worked out, but I hate to say, perhaps not in our lifetimes.

Those calling for a boycott have do have it half-right. The problem is we, because of the state of the apparatus, have no megaphone for this purpose, which definitely requires one. Think of every new young mother, think of how many would even listen to an idea outside of the realm of medicine, even ones who have close contact with those involved in this righteous advocacy. It's simply too new and controversial a concept to take hold in a MEANINGFUL way.

NPR only rose to an institution because it used to be unique in that way, as an impartial mouthpiece. But it has been bought as well, on all fronts, as someone below has already mentioned. I would say we are facing something like the collapse of the USSR, but I'm afraid we're well past even that point of precarity.


No Rachel;
Our family is full of school teachers, Baptist preachers, Methodist preachers, big talkers-- lots of Uncles and Aunts are called to do speeches (they have good loud voices and likes to hear themselves).

My Husband who was harmed by a vaccine when he was 28 was a ball player, football star in high school, loved intermerial sports in college was on all the teams, joined the volunteer fire department and all that.

---However, now a days he spends two days in bed for ever day he gets up and does something

Now my son and daughter would appear to be ann intervert - stays in thier rooms a lot -- But it is this immune disease brought on by vaccines that caused it, and not who they really are.

Mark Blaxill gets up in front of thousands, on TV - that is hardly an intervert. Same with Stagmon.

Eileen Nicole Simon

How the brain is affected by all of the factors associated with autism must be the focus of research. Also, before hypothesizing about pre- peri- and neonatal factors, evidence in the medical literature needs to be taken into account. Cicero (106-43 BC), noted long ago, "If no use is made of the labors of past ages, the world must remain always in the infancy of knowledge."

Fifty years ago, Seymour Kety, former Director of the NIMH published a seminal paper on blood flow in the brain. Blood flow is higher in nuclei of the brainstem auditory pathway than anywhere else in the brain. See figure 2 (p802) in Kety’s paper, which is online at

High blood flow exposes the brainstem auditory nuclei to more of any noxious substance in the circulation. The auditory system is also more vulnerable to any factor that compromises aerobic metabolism. This is dramatically evident in the brain damage caused by subjecting monkeys to asphyxia at birth (see Windle, Scientific American, October 1969). In this article Windle railed against the increasing use of a clamp on the umbilical cord. By the mid-1980s clamping the umbilical cord immediately after birth had become a prescribed protocol, which by now is taken for granted as the normal thing to do.

Blood flow to the placenta continues until the newborn infant’s heart diverts blood to the lungs (with closure of the foramen ovale and ductus arteriosus). The lungs do not become functional until the capillaries surrounding the alveoli are filled with blood. The present day alternative is to try to ventilate the lungs. Again research from long ago provided evidence that ventilation leads to patchy incomplete expansion of the lungs (Jäykkä S. Capillary erection and lung expansion; an experimental study of the effect of liquid pressure applied to the capillary network of excised fetal lungs. Acta Paediatr Suppl. 1957 Jan;46[suppl 112)]:1-91.). Could this be a factor in the increased prevalence of childhood asthma?

Iatrogenic errors in obstetrics and neonatal medicine (vaccines and more) must be investigated.

For Rachael


You are free-associating. I know some very outgoing autistic people, and very outgoing creative people - there isn't formula or rule.


There's an article on measles cases and MMR in the Daily Mail for anyone interested in popping over and counter-acting the shills.


"... Second, I would like to be perfectly clear. In my book autism is caused by all the suspect toxins. The possibility that genes are involved is high. After all what in the living human body does not have anything to with genes...."


Genes have plenty to do with who we are and what we become, but that in no way justifies trying to blame them for everything that goes wrong in the body.

I have an autistic child, yet there's never been a single case of autism ( .. or anything that even looks like it) on mine or my wife's side, as far back as we've been able to check.

My son was a normally developing child, until he regressed into autism after doctor visits that included an absolute barrage of vaccines. I don't need confirmation that vaccines caused my sons autism. I was there, and I'd have to be the intellectual equivalent of a monkey to think otherwise.

But then again, maybe it was genetics. And all those faulty genes that brought little or no harm to any of his ancestors, somehow managed to cause autism in him. And this genetic anomaly just happened to surface in the midst of a nationwide epidemic.

Yes, of course, his autism had nothing to do with the 31 vaccines that he received before he was 21 months old. It was the latent familial genetic defect, that suddenly decided to appear.

Yeah, that makes way more sense.


For commenter @6:10 PM: Who do you think the "canaries in the coal mine" are? Who are the children who are more sensitive to environmental injuries and more vulnerable to autoimmune illnesses, allergies, asthma, autism, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, fibromyalgia etc (illnesses caused by an up-regulated immune system), if not those who were born already highly-sensitive (introverts)?

For Rachael


I think we are going round in circles. In most cases, anyhow, we could not tell how someone would have developed if they had not been damaged. Seems like pure speculation. The studies looking at the social characteristics of the parents of vaccine damage children, such as those by Baron-Cohen, have been very weak.


Confusses me. I went to the site to see the symptoms of bipolar. I was really guessing that perhaps in the case of bipolar it may have been better dignoisis, since I did not recognize my daughter having it - although there was always something there.
By the time I got done reading the symptoms. My daughter may have had a mood disorder leaning the way of bipolar but "MY LORD" those poor kids and parents. It is far worse than anything our family experience. I don't think my daughter had full blown bipolar untill 27 after her latest series of Hep B and a flu shot.

I believe it is related to seizures during the slow sleep cycle. Lots point to it.

Now for something off topic but related to seizrues; which may interest some of you, and something I am very excited about. Through my email;the epilespy foundation is having a conference on Ketogenic diet (had it in Edinburgh) a couple of years ago but this time it is going to be held in Chicago. They are also going to have some experts on metabolism there too!!!
Oh exciting times!

They are going to also have parent's night.

Anyone on here that is from the Chicago area that would be willing to go and maybe lets us know what is going on????

Please, Please, Please.


Sadly, I've decided to stop donating to my NPR station. Nationally, they're funded by Big Pharma, locally, they're funded by frackers (environmentally exploitative natural gas drilling). Generation Rescue now gets those funds.


For commenter @ 04:12 PM: Giftedness comes in many forms/subjects and is seen far more often in introverts, than in extroverts. While introverts are a minority group in society, they form the majority of gifted people. Never forget, that the whole spectrum of autism is actually based upon degrees of introversion, that should be clue number one, as to whom is more vulnerable to injuries from too many, or repeat vaccinations.

These studies describe the neuroscientific basis of the extraversion/introversion continuum determined by different brain structures; neuroanatomy and neurochemistry.


The intent is to deceive, for then to say, "it wasn't the thimerosal, autism has increased" it an attempt to promote that lie to the public and the pediatricians. Those children within the last CDC study were born in 2000, three years before the vaccines outgrew their shelf life. That year ,2000, had the most thimerosal injected of all the years. Now we continue to license a thimerosal flu vaccine. They get it, they want to confuse to avoid the liability.

Jeannette Bishop

Thanks, Anne, for providing this transcript and analysis. I don't think I could have listened for long in fact, I almost didn't get past reading the quote Bob Moffit pointed out:

"Important to remember that while we're very sensitive to this increase, this isn't entirely unique. We've seen about a three fold increase in food allergies in the last decade and marked increased in asthma and juvenile diabetes. You've probably seen those numbers where pediatric bi-polar disorder went up forty fold in a decade, so as Amy suggests, sometimes there are diagnostic trends that can really drive numbers in a very big way. But that's not to say that we can just rule this out or dismiss this as being just increased detection or increased ascertainment. Very real possibility here that there are more children affected. Until we have evidence to the contrary, it's best to assume that.”

Are "officials" going to try denying each environmentally induced epidemic separately because, well, there seems to be so many other other epidemics lately, and it's just so highly unlikely that things are getting worse on that kind of scale?

For Rachael


It is rather a nebulous criterion and you have to admit "maths, sciences, music, art' doesn't leave much left...


I don't get what the big mystery is ... it is very obvious that introverted children, (who are sometimes gifted - maths, sciences, music, art) are far more vulnerable to environmental injuries from vaccines, toxins etc, than the average, extroverted child. All of these disorders (eg allergies, autoimmune illnesses, allergies, autism, bipolar, anxiety), which have increased so dramatically in the past few decades are far more likely to be triggered in children who are born highly-sensitive because of different, but normal brain chemistry and structure.

Marie-Anne Denayer

When I was in Med School, the older professors were the most amazing diagnosticians because they knew how to take a medical HISTORY not having yet access to batteries of imaging studies and fancy blood tests. It remains true to this day that a detailed history will lead to a differential if not THE diagnosis in 99% of patients I see, that is before a single test has been ordered.
Unfortunately, medical history taking is a lost art, as we have all come to witness first hand: if "they" -my colleagues, sadly enough- only listened to us parents, who about 25 years ago began describing how our precious babies regressed into autism within hours to weeks after vaccination, we would not have witnessed the exponential increase in autism incidence from 1 in 10,000 to 50,000 in the 1970's to an obscene 1 in 88.
It is so obvious what track has to be followed to solve the riddle of autism.
All it takes is common sense and integrity.

As to the greater incidence among boys, it is a known fact that all pediatric neurological disorders responsible for mental retardation are more prevalent in boys. This simple observation did lead to the discovery of "Fragile X".
Girls have 2 chromosomes X, while boys have one X and one Y chromosome, the latter being an X that lost a chunk of genetic material to become a Y as documented by karyotype analysis. That loss of an arm of chromosome X can even be incompatible with life, hence only girls can have Rett's syndrome and survive.

maurine meleck

I want to see "thoroughly debunked" on all of their gravestones.
Great piece, Anne. merci


Amy Becker

Good-bye, "Prairie Home Companion." Good-bye, "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me." Good-bye, "Car Talk (Click-n-Clack, the Tappet Brothers)." Goody-bye, NPR... I'll never listen to you again. Government-owned, Gates Foundation and Pharma sponsored. The perfect medium for the big, hungry lie.

John Stone
Living the Dream

I happened to turn the radio station to this discussion on my way to work. I ended up driving the loooong way to work so I could hear the entire show. In the end, I wasn't surprised by what I heard but somehow I'm always stunned when I hear or read what these "experts" are saying.

While there is often an admission that environmental factors might (emphasis always given by the expert on the word "might") contribute to the autism, it is always made specifically clear that one of those factors IS NOT VACCINES or any of their ingredients. It's really odd - they say this with such conviction as if an exhaustive pile of every possible type of research has been conducted and conclusively determined that there is no impact from vaccines - not even a slight possibility?! It's just ridiculous - of the "80,000 potential toxicants" only the vaccine poisons are so vigorously defended! No other toxicant is even mentioned.

Thanks Anne - keep 'em coming.

Canada mom

One of the things I think we need to be very aware of is that some of the increase is actually more diagnosis. Not better I would say. I meet kids who have a diagnosis of autism (this is in Canada) and I am stunned that they received it. These are kids who can play with others, speak very well, listen to instructions, are taking breakdancing classes, etc. These are not kids who have received interventions at any remarkable level, biomedical or otherwise. The upshot is that the general public is meeting far more children like this than like my son, who lost everything and still cannot speak, have friends, take classes, etc. And so, I think we do need to acknowledge that there is more diagnosis (I would say inappropriate diagnosis for sure) otherwise we aren't dealing with what much of the public is experiencing. This however doesn't change the fact that my son is in a roomful of children who are as affected as he is, and kids even more severely affected have left that classroom because it could not cope with them. Natasa's point is crucial.


I agree that total parental boycott of all pediatric vaccines is the only solution of vaccine-induced autism pandemic. Nothing less will work. Vaccine pushers are pure evils.

Terri Lewis

Just Curious,

Of course you are 100% right.

And that leads to the only answer to your (rhetorical) question at the very end of your post, which is (of course): "Never."

What we learn from the study of history is that we have--so far!--failed to learn from the study of history.

The Bible gets it right, in this way, with wisdom that applies to atheists as well as believers and all those in between: There are three kinds of people in the world: the wise man, the fool, and the evil doer.

As my own comment, I note that we all play those roles--all of them--at various points throughout a lifetime.

Myself, I have gone from doing my own share of evil--through ignorance, I hope, is all--and then evil can also be done through denial. After that, I was the fool for any number of years. Now that I recognize the evil doers, I hope never to put my head in the sand again.

As to whether I will ever personally advance to the "wise person" we will leave to the judgment of others!

Terri Lewis

Insel isn't feeble-minded; Insel is evil.

Parents like Walsh are a part of the problem.

Parents such as those at Proud Parents of Unvaccinated Children are a part of the solution.

Working "with them" has failed completely--and some of us know why.

Fighting them with sheer resistance of their vaccine "programme" is what's needed.

Reaching this conclusion took me lots of research, even more firsthand experience, and a willingness to accept my own part in what happened.

It also took me about 5 years.

For some, they see it all, almost instantly. . .others of us remain in some level of denial for a lifetime. Take your time.

Go where the truth leads you.

Trust no man completely.

Birgit Calhoun

First of all, this business of "not being born with autism" mus be qualified. I think a child can be born with autism when the expectant mother was exposed to vaccines and a lot of mercury-containing fish, and dental amalgam fillings and antibiotics for synergism. There are possibly other things that could affect the pregnant mother.

Second, I would like to be perfectly clear. In my book autism is caused by all the suspect toxins. The possibility that genes are involved is high. After all what in the living human body does not have anything to with genes.

One more thing, there was an article in The Wall Street Journal (4/30/2012): "Genes May Link Disparate Diseases"
about the same gene affecting several different disease processes, i.e. APOE being involved in both atherosclerosis and Alzheimers. Strange thing, no one thought of including autism in that group. APOE4 is the real culprit, and it has an awful lot to do with processing mercury. The War on Mercury would be a great war to fight. There is lots of information on it.


What a pile of crap.


Is this our Amy on the IACC panel?

Amy Harmon (born September 17, 1968 in New York City[1]) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning correspondent for The New York Times. After receiving a B.A. degree in American Studies from the University of Michigan, she began her career in journalism as the Opinion page editor of the Michigan Daily, the university's student newspaper. Later, Harmon was hired as a reporter for The Los Angeles Times and from 1990 to 1997 she covered the auto industry from the paper's Detroit bureau, before she started writing mainly about digital technology.

In 1997 she joined The New York Times. In 2001, Ms. Harmon wrote an article about a black Internet entrepreneur and his white partner, which was part of a series on race relations which won her the Pulitzer Prize 2001 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting. In the 2008 Pulitzers, Harmon won the prize for Explanatory Reporting for a series titled "The DNA Age" about the ramifications of new genetic technology.[2]

Just Curious

Carol & Stagmom,

It wasn't just Iraq. The war in Vietnam was a fabrication as well and over 58,000 died as a result of that government lie. (

Winston Churchill once said, Sometimes “the truth is so important it must be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies."

Insel, is just one of many in the bodyguard of liars surrounding the damage being done by the only weapon employed in the "War on Disease".

Health and government officials are fully aware that vaccines are a major contributor to the autism epidemic and the epidemic of so many other disorders. But in their infinite insanity they religiously tell themselves that the benefits are worth the risk, while the casualty rate increases from all the benefits.

The only question left to answer is when will they concede their error, and begin reclaiming their credibility and their honor.

Fire Tom Insel Now.

"The director of the CDC in a phone call with reporters last month made a point to say that the increase could be entirely due to better detection."

He needs to go to jail for his role in the cover-up. Insel needs to go to jail. All of those bureaucrats do - along with the pharmawhores.

Look how NPR chose an autism parent whose child is so mildly affected, he's mainstreamed in pre-school with little support. Come on.

Amy Harmon is just another media parasite like Seth Mnookin who's cashing in on the autism tragedy - posing as some kind of expert.

The entire interview is so sickening.

Anne, thank you for keeping us informed about the criminals who are perpetuating the autism epidemic and the media whores who enable them, although it's a little early in the morning to stomach all this.


There's a special place in hell for these baby maimers.

CT teacher

to Bob Moffit-Actually chronic autoimmune diseases really began much more that 20 years ago. My husband and I, both born in the 40's have suffered from them since our youth, and we know others who have also. My nieces, born in the 60's have them, and my children, born in the 70's have them. Yes, there's a strong strain of autoimmune disorders in our families, but I point this out to illustrate that autoimmune disorders have been on the rise for many decades. Now,let's see. When did mass vaccination of children begin? Hm-in the 40's and 50's. What a coincidence!

John Stone

Insel must be feeble minded to cite the British adult autism survey.

1) It was actually a re-labelled survey of Asperger cases.

2) The diagnostic tool was not correctly used.

3) They projected onto the sample three and a half times as many cases as they found, and then projected that figure onto the entire population for England and Wales to a 95% confidence interval.

4) There wasn't a single member of an ethnic minority detected among the cases in the sample.

5) This National Statistics publication was paid for and launched by the UK National Health service as evidence that autism had not increased -and that MMR was safe - in spite of rules prohibiting the publication of National Statistic for polemical ends.

Of course, any load of old rope will do when it supports the official fudge. But this really shows how much trouble Insel is in. Shameful dissimulation.


Carol - great analogy - I say the same thing - this nation sent men and women to DIE in Iraq over a lie that neither the Congress nor the media wanted to look into because of FEAR. Fear sells death - poison - war - and makes MONEY.


Did you guys know that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction? I know because a parade of neoconservatives pranced across my TV screen night after night telling me so.

If you assert something often enough people will come to believe it, especially if you accompany assertion with a veneer of authority.

Susan Page should be ashamed of herself.

Christine Thompson

How much more double speak are we supposed to stomach? Thomas Insel says autism is a national disaster in the making (it's a health crisis now!) then has the unmitigated gal to insist after the millions of dollars poured into "research", they still do not have a way to prevent or cure this disease.

I remember when GRID was alarming enough to make the nightly news. A disease of interest but only in that community. Then they realized that everyone could become infected and carry the disease. It was in our national blood supply. adults and children across the socio/economic sphere were in danger. GRID swiftly moved from the closure of bath houses to an international epidemic - AIDS. They may not be able to cure it but they can test for it, treat the HIV before it blooms into AIDS and educate the planet's populace in ways to prevent the spread of infection.

Yet here we are again. We have an epidemic of Autism. I suppose it's the greatest ho-hum "who really knows what causes it or how to treat or cure it or who cares as long as my kids don't have it" epidemic around. Autism is the disease that keeps on giving and giving and giving and giving and...

Every year they have us whipped into hysteria over H1N1 or the next super flu de jour. Prevent and if not, treat then cure. But autism, well that's been around forever. don't worry mommy-to-be. Just don;t eat the fish.

Where is the public hue and cry? Autism is cruel. Just when you thought you had dodged that bullet it comes back to nail your children- just when you least expect it. After all, diagnosis is based on observation not genetic testing.

Is our society so broken and corrupt that we will allow this crisis to continue? Perhaps we should all sit down and break "pink" bread together. Then our so-called leaders would understand how horrific autism is.

Vicki Hill

Insel mentioned the dramatic increase in pediatric bipolar. That increase was due to the medical pro's finally taking off their blinders. The DSM actually said that it wasn't possible for a child to have bipolar disorder, in spite of studies showing that many adults with bipolar claimed that their symptoms had started in childhood. The average wait time from the start of symptoms to diagnosis was 9 years. When a few docs got brave enough to admit that the 'accepted wisdom' was wrong, things started to change.

When will they take off their blinders about autism?


This last bit of what Insel said is absolutely crucial:

"...We’re talking about a disorder which in its more severe forms, is really profoundly disabling. THAT IS THE PIECE OF IT THAT'S ALSO INCREASING, so there’s every reason to take this very seriously.”

If we can show that severe (and moderate) forms of autism are on the increase than all the bullshit about better diagnosing and awareness flies through the window. There was no way that anyone in the past could have NOT noticed those affected by moderate or severe autism.

I agree that Insel knows more than he is letting out. Afraid to rock the boat or under strict orders not to?

Bob Moffitt

Insel on the rising rate of autism:

"Important to remember that while we're very sensitive to this increase, this isn't entirely unique. We've seen about a three fold increase in food allergies in the last decade and marked increased in asthma and juvenile diabetes. You've probably seen those numbers where pediatric bi-polar disorder went up forty fold in a decade, so as Amy suggests, sometimes there are diagnostic trends that can really drive numbers in a very big way. But that's not to say that we can just rule this out or dismiss this as being just increased detection or increased ascertainment. Very real possibility here that there are more children affected. Until we have evidence to the contrary, it's best to assume that.”

What could possibly cause dramatic increases in "allergies, asthma, juvenile diabetes, pediatric bi-polar .. " over the last decade?

It is all such a big mystery to public health officials .. but .. if the truth were told .. the dramatic increases in chronic autoimmune disorders began NOT TEN YEARS AGO .. AS SUGGESTED BY INSEL .. BUT .. TWENTY YEARS AGO .. WHEN .. "COINCIDENTALLY" .. PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS DRAMATICALLY INCREASED THE NUMBER OF RECOMMENDED AND APPROVED CHILDHOOD VACCINES.

Why am I not surprised this heavily biased "panel" favoring any explanation for the "mysteries" except vaccines .. was partly paid by contributions from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation?

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