Dachel Media Update: "Free" Back To School Shots, Induced Labor
Autism Parental Input

Weekly Wrap: You're an Idiot, Emily.

AofA Red Logo Ayumi YamadaBy Dan Olmsted

I hope the homage to Bob Dylan somewhat softens the blow of calling Emily Willingham of Forbes Mag an idiot, and implicitly, Babe (cf Idiot Wind, 1974). What I really mean is, your ouevre is intellectually incoherent when it comes to autism causation, ma'am.

But that doesn't scan as well.

In Forbes Magazine (self-professed Capitalist Tool), Emily turned nasty on Anne Dachel when Anne commented on Emily's piece this week about the new study linking induced pregnancy and autism risk. Emily went after the proposed connection -- a reasonable thing to do, suggesting any number of things in pregnancy that might have caused the study's observation. Anne, also reasonably, posted this:

"And I wonder how many of these mothers got a mercury-containing flu vaccine during pregnancy. The majority of the flu vaccine available contains 25 mcg of mercury, a known neurotoxin. It easily crosses the placental barrier. That much mercury is recommended for someone weighing 550 lbs, according to EPA guidelines." -- Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

To which Emily replied: "Yes, about that fast-and-loose play with the word “mercury.” There’s a prefix missing from your comments. I know you know that. Why do you persist in eliding it?"

Ah yes, sneakily omitting the fact that vaccine mercury is ethylmercury, nontoxic, fetus- and infant-friendly neurologically and immunologically irrelevant ETHYLmercury.

Emily links to a post by Steven Novella, kindly condescending to inform us that the kind of mercury in vaccines is the good kind -- the kind Paul Offit calls "a gentle bacteriostat, " and Arthur Allen calls "safe" (this after Allen had called the concern about it a "not-so-crackpot theory.")

Anyway, Novella says, "First, the EPA limit is for methymercury, not ethylmercury, which is the form found in Thimerosal. Methylmercury is known to be much more toxic than ethylmercury. In addition ethylmercury (half life about a week) is cleared from the body much more quickly than methylmercury (half life about 1.5 months). Further, infants excrete mercury more efficiently than adults. The EPA safety limits are based upon the more toxic form of mercury, with a 10 fold built in safety buffer in case some people are more susceptible to mercury toxicity than others."

For which I have just one word -- no, not idiotic. And not bullshit. Although both apply. No, the word is Burbacher. The University of Washington professor's peer-reviewed study shows ethylmercury goes into the brain, folks, and it stays in the brain a lot longer. It's not excreted, it's trapped in the brain, where it de-ethylates into inorganic mercury and settles in to do its damage.

The idea that ethyl and methyl are the yin and yang -- complete opposites -- of mercury is, well, idiotic. Both are members of the same organic mercury (danger! danger!) grouping: alkyl mercury (mega-danger!) As Mark Blaxill and I show in our book, The Age of Autism, their commercial development in the early part of the last century was accompanied by a healthy respect for the lethality of both.

"There are several lines of scientific evidence that raise concerns about the immediate toxicity of thimerosal," we write. "Mark Noble at the University of Rochester "demonstrated that levels of thimerosal that seem likely to be achieved in the brains of vaccinated infants can interfere with normal growth and development of precursor cells in the developing brain. Noble and his colleagues have shown that thimerosal is as effective as methylmercury in activating cellular response pathways that lead to degradation of cell sufrace receptors of critical importance in normal cell division and survival."

And that's just for starters. There is every reason to have a panic attack over the fact that ETHYL-mercury containing vaccines continue to be recommended for women and babies in the United States, and continue to be used in shots given to more than 80 million children around the world every year.

But Emily and company are all, thank god it's not methylmercury, right, because that kind of mercury is known to cause brain damage and developmental problems and we need to avoid it like the plague! Just by switching the prefix to ethyl, we can all be safe and cozy in the knowledge that deliberately injecting mercury into babies on purpose is not crazy.

Excuse me while I rustle up a couple of studies that have nothing to do with vaccination -- but everything to do with it, in a subtle but substantial way. Ah yes, here we go: Eating ethylmercury-treated grain led to poisonings in Ghana in 1967. Twenty people died. Of those who survived, children experienced earlier and more severe effects than adults. Speech disturbances in the children were particularly notable. The report added, "Of all the fungicides in modern use, the alkyl-mercury compounds [ethyl- and methylmercury] offer the most serious health hazards .... Serious concern has therefore been expressed about the necessary contamination of the environment with mercury, particulary from its use as fungicides in agriculture and in industry."

Government had the good sense to ban agricultural uses of mercury, both ethyl and methyl by the end of the 1960s. Gosh, I wonder why they didn't grandfather in good ol' ethyl (prefix not elided) while they banished bad ol' methyl.

OK, let me rummage here for one more paper ... it's here somewhere ... aha! (And thank you, Mark Blaxill) "Clinical Observations in Ethyl Mercury Chloride Poisoning," from the American Journal of Industrial Medicine in 1984.

"Forty-one patients in the Peoples Republic of China were poisoned by ethyl mercury chloride, cause by the ingestion of rice that had been treated with  the chemical. A dose-response relationship was found. Five months after the onset of the intoxication, the patients were still in poor condition. They were treated with two chelating agents. ... Both agents were effective. ... Although urinary excretion is not the best estimate of body burden in alkyl mercury intoxication, during chelation therapy urinary mercury was an effective indicator for diagnosis and assessment of the degree of intoxication. Chelation therapy was useful as long as the urinary mercury level was elevated."

Wow, I feel like I'm back at the so-called crackpot quackfest called Autism One in Chicago, quacking around with Bradstreet, James, Haley et al. Just one more note from the paper -- among the recorded symptoms were impaired memory, speech disturbance, convulsions, loss of appetite, abdominal pain and diarrhea, impaired visual acuity, constipation. Five months later, the list had grown even longer and included fear, weight loss, headache, insomnia.

Oh, and, "Available data indicate that ethyl mercury compounds have toxicological properties similar to those of methyl mercury compounds. We have the same experience." Once more for emphasis from these authors: "Ethyl mercury compounds have toxicological properties similar to those of methyl mercury compounds. There is evidence that both methyl and ethyl mercury can persist in the body for a long time. In our patients, 5 months after the onset of intoxication, the urinary Hg levels were still elevated.

"High urinary Hg levels were also seen in another group of ethyl mercury intoxicated patients six years after exposure to ethyl mercury chloride."

Sorry to go all science-y on us there, but the point is quite simple. Emily doesn't know ethyl-. Anne does.


The study on induced labor and autism risk was just one of the studies that got attention last week -- another being the link between cancer and autism. Of course, The Times and others took the view that the same gene caused both, conveniently locating the concern in the genetic argument now fashionable (parent-blaming having been retired in the 1960s -- the same decade ethyl and methyl were booted from fungicides but not ethyl from vaccines).

Of course, from our crackpot point of view, a toxic exposure could mutate genes and cause all sorts of mayhem. Mark Blaxill and I wrote about that this week as we told the story of William Ritchey Miller, autism's Case 3. He died in 2011, we reported, of a rare immune system cancer, multiple myeloma. His brother had died earlier, at the age of 43, from lupus, an autoimmune disease. And Case 1, as we found out years ago, not only had autism but juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, which attacked as he hit adolescence. Gold salts treatment cleared up the JRA, his brother told us, and greatly ameliorated his autistic behaviors. "It was the most amazing thing I've ever seen," he said.

All these random studies, whether on genes or labor, or cancer, or aging parents, or fat moms, or Prozac during infancy. or living near a freeway, or sonograms, are tossed out with no real understanding of the bigger picture. In many cases, they offer data, but those data are clues, not causes. To get to causation, you have to include historical epidemiology, and that epidemiology highlights two key inflection points:

-- The first case reports, in 1943, by Leo Kanner. We've linked those to the first uses of ethyl (yes, ethyl, no eliding here) mercury as a seed disinfectant, a lumber preservative and -- hold your breath, batten down the hatches, and back away if you don't want to be hit by exploding paradigms -- in multidose vaccinations.

Something happened in the 1930s, and all these new, One-a-Day Brand Multiple Autism Causation Theories need to account for it.  I don't think that first autism cluster points to induced labor, as interesting an observation as that may be in isolation.

-- The worldwide explosion of autism beginning in 1988. Of course, that's the year they moved the mercury (OK, ETHYL-mercury) containing DPT shot forward in Britain and introduced the MMR as well. In the U.S., it was the Vaccine Court-era introduction of whatever vaccine the pharma companies had in the pipeline, including the mercury (OK, ethylmercury) containing HepB and Hib.

As David Kirby reported in 2010 on HuffPost:


"A recent US EPA study has found a distinct "changepoint" year - or spike - in autism in California and elsewhere and concludes that it would be "prudent to assume that at least some portion of this increase is real and results from environmental factors."

"In the Danish, California, and worldwide data sets, we found that an increase in autism disorder cumulative incidence began about (the birth cohort years) 1988-1989," wrote the authors Michael E. Mc Donald and John F. Paul, of the EPA's National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory.

"Although the debate about the nature of increasing autism continues," they added, "the potential for this increase to be real and involve exogenous (external) environmental stressors exists."


So, these one-a-day-brand multiple studies need to consider that as well. There go freeways and induced labor and etc. and etc. and etc.

Mercury fits, though. The mercury in shots certainly tracks with the epidemic in the U.S., although not as clearly around the world. Perhaps mercury emissions from China ought to be examined (thanks again, Mark Blaxill), along with a real effort to coordinate the data from all types of mercury exposure -- inorganic (Chinese coal-fired powerplant explosion), elemental (dental), methyl (fish after inorganic mercury from power plants is methylated), and -- God help us -- ethyl from its last remaining redoubt, vaccines given to pregnant women and children.


This ain't-a-gonna-happen, though, while mainstream smokestacks like Forbes emit polluted nonsense that plays straight into their pharma-funded hands. This is a problem not just with reporting on autism, but with so many other issues we're faced with today.

So let's go big and give the last word to Edward Snowden, the man without a country -- certainly not this one. The New York Times, reduced to bit player in the NSA saga by its lousy track record on reporting national security stories these past few years, finally got an interview with Snowden.

"Q: Why did you seek out Laura and Glenn (Greenwald, of Britain's Guardian), rather than journalists from major American news outlets (N.Y.T., W.P., W.S.J. etc.)? In particular, why Laura, a documentary filmmaker?

"Edward Snowden: After 9/11, many of the most important news outlets in America abdicated their role as a check to power — the journalistic responsibility to challenge the excesses of government — for fear of being seen as unpatriotic and punished in the market during a period of heightened nationalism. From a business perspective, this was the obvious strategy, but what benefited the institutions ended up costing the public dearly. The major outlets are still only beginning to recover from this cold period."


Dan Olmsted is Editor of AgeOfAutism.com



@Bob Moffitt: agreed, absolutely.




Technical Report: Mercury in the Environment: Implications for Pediatricians

Lynn R. Goldman, MD, MPH,
Michael W. Shannon, MD, MPH,
the Committee on Environmental Health

Next Section

Mercury is a ubiquitous environmental toxin that causes a wide range of adverse health effects in humans. Three forms of mercury (elemental, inorganic, and organic) exist, and each has its own profile of toxicity. Exposure to mercury typically occurs by inhalation or ingestion. Readily absorbed after its inhalation, mercury can be an indoor air pollutant, for example, after spills of elemental mercury in the home; however, industry emissions with resulting ambient air pollution remain the most important source of inhaled mercury. Because fresh-water and ocean fish may contain large amounts of mercury, children and pregnant women can have significant exposure if they consume excessive amounts of fish. The developing fetus and young children are thought to be disproportionately affected by mercury exposure, because many aspects of development, particularly brain maturation, can be disturbed by the presence of mercury. Minimizing mercury exposure is, therefore, essential to optimal child health. This review provides pediatricians with current information on mercury, including environmental sources, toxicity, and treatment and prevention of mercury exposure."



" Hazard Summary-Created in April 1992; Revised in January 2000

Mercury exists in three forms: elemental mercury, inorganic mercury compounds (primarily mercuric chloride), and organic mercury compounds (primarily methyl mercury). All forms of mercury are quite toxic, and each form exhibits different health effects."

Doug Troutman

Thimerisol is water soluable mercury and crosses the blood brain barrier. It passes thru the skin. Did anybody ask Emily why did they take Merthiolate off the market? They continue to lie about Thimerisol (Why?).

Christine Thompson

Methyl - Dangerous.
Ethyl - Ethylcal!
Glad Emily could clear that one up.


Sally Davies does it Bob ..right on Sally Man cool...



I did not mean the article linked was misusing anything as it appears from how I wrote, but that there is good reason accept the additive factor of pollutants in some cases.


I do think that there those that use the additive factors to muddy the waters, but I have also stated I felt multiple factors add to or contribute to developmental/medical/psychiatric disorders including the elevation of risk by pollution including benzene. The truth can be misused.

As mentioned here...

Studies: Increased pollution can lead to greater risk of autism

The California researchers noted traffic-related pollutants can induce inflammation and stress, citing other studies. Both can lead to the development of autism, according to the study.

“We expect to find many, perhaps dozens, of environmnetal factors over the next few years, with each of them probably contributing to a fraction of autism cases,” said Irva Hertz-Picciotto, principal investigator of the autism study at UC Davis. “It is highly likely that most of them operate in conjunction with other exposures and/or with genes.”


cia parker

Did they look at how many of the babies who had been induced got the hep-B vaccine while still at the hospital? As opposed to how many of the induced did not get the vax, yet still developed autism?


"You're an Idiot, Emily" ....Not really too harsh a term Dan.... however, "Vaccine Bozo" might be a bit more warm and fuzzy...

There STILL seems be confusion with several types of mercury...

Let's see ....Ethyl mercury / Thimerosal..... was grandfathered in to vaccine use 70 years ago... and has STILL never even been tested by the FDA to modern standards....

Ethyl mercury / Thimerosal / Banned in Denmark, Russia, Norway in 1992,
banned from contact lens solutions,

Ethyl mercury / Thimerosal / ... kills infants when used on their umbilical cords.....

Ethyl mercury / Thimerosal / Found to be toxic to neurons at nanomolar concentrations and accelerated by male hormones...

However, SHOULD BE HARMLESS & SAFE per EMILY / for pregnant women in their flu shots when their fetus weighs only a few ounces...

your right Dan, she does sound like an idiot....

cia parker

About the vax/unvax study: of course I am in favor of its being done, and say so at every turn, but have measures been taken to try to assure that it is large enough to be meaningful? Remember how the Simpsonwood scientists were able to dilute the significance of the Verstraeten study by throwing in many thousands more children? There would have a be a large number of vaccinated autistic children (and teens), whose damage would not be allowed to be dispersed in the multitude (probably easier now that it's one in 25). Will scientists from our side be assured of being able to take part in the study design?

cia parker

Dr. Schachter:
I think it's fairly effective to post this information in comments on articles on the Internet, the articles pointed out on Age of Autism, The Refusers, and in Anne Dachel's blog. A lot of people read the comments, as BP realizes as seen in its willingness to pay so many counter-operatives to post in the same places attempting to refute the truth. Someone compared the power of commenters (specifically autism moms in that article) to the empowerment of ordinary people by the Gutenberg Revolution and the Reformation. A power not to be scoffed at.


Bob Moffit;

They well know, and they well have the stats as you said.

This latest study - feet held to the fire of CDC - a question needs to be always asked of this study.

Why are women needing to have labor induced in the first place. Not that it shouldn't be, or is not needd - but what is wrong that they have to have labor induced.

vendetta people are made after a long ferment

Show Me Your Child's Vax Records;

What was that big wig, head of infectious disease woman in Wisconsin - talking in front of the State Congress.

She said all of her's were vaccinated.

What she failed to tell us that her son had autism.

See how it goes!
These are people that are willing to throw their own under the bus


What's frustrating about all these studies is not that they aren't valid or important. It's in a segment of the scientific community's stubborn determination to connect only certain dots while ignoring and refusing to connect the huge glaring red dot, vaccination, that sits in the middle of the picture, overshadowing all the other smaller dots. All the dots are important, but the biggest one can't be left out.


In his book, _Preventing Autism: What You Can Do To Protect Your Children Before and After Birth_, on pages 41 and 42, in the chapter, "Genetics Loads the Gun, but Environment Pulls the Trigger", Dr. Jay Gordon has a list from "Developmental Neurotoxicity of Industrial Chemicals" which was published in the Lancet. The long list is entitled, "Chemicals Known to be Neurotoxic to Humans" and is divided into three columns, "Metals and Inorganic Compounds", "Organic Solvents", and "Other Organic Substances". Among the metals and inorganic compounds listed are aluminum compounds, mercury and mercuric compounds, ethylmercury, methylmercury and (just in case anyone is wondering if they should filter their water if their municipality is adding it) fluoride compounds. I'd like to point out too, that in the last list is phenol, which is (or at least used to be) the active ingredient in Lysol spray disinfectant (which horrifies me when I see anyone using it, especially during pregnancy).

Ok, so that's Dr. Gordon quoting The Lancet. He also states, "And there are thousands more that have never been tested for safety. This chart represents just the tip of the iceberg."

I have not yet read the whole book (I will), but I do think that it can provide very valuable guidance to everyone with respect to industrial toxins. I know that it's frustrating because no doubt, vaccination should be singled out and given top priority, but we shouldn't lose sight of the big picture and should also be aware of these other toxins that could be singly or in combination, causing autism, and should also be avoided. Also, to be fair to Dr. Gordon, I have not yet read his chapter on vaccination, so I am not commenting here on where his priorities lie.

Bob Moffitt

@ Taximom:

"Don't be too sure that the studies on living near freeways, aging parents, fat moms, sonograms, Prozac during infancy, etc., are so useless. All of those seem to have a link with either mercury exposure, or else with interfering with mercury excretion."

Apparently, we disagree on the worthiness of these types of "random" studies .. but .. hopefully .. we can agree the single, most obvious study that common sense demands be done .. is the study public health officials absolutely refuse to do .. which is .. of the "vaccinated v. unvaccinated" populations.

And, so .. would you at least agree with the following comment I made regarding the latest research seeking to find a link between "labor inducing" drugs and autism:

"However .. the latest study "linking autism to drugs administered to induce labor in women" .. is reported to be "the biggest study of its kind .. matching 625,042 births with public school data from the late 1990s through 2008" .. thereby clearly providing evidence that public health officials have the data, resources and expertise to conduct such a "retrospective" study of vaccinated v. unvaccinated populations .. they lack only the will to do so."

Show Me Your Child's Vax  Records

John Stone, of course. No, this is not personal healthcare as they have made clear. This is public safety. Privacy matters not. They are willing to sue, arrest the "anti-vaccine" after all. So they should proudly and loudly prove their loyalty to public health and the safety of the herd. Like Star Bellied Sneetches - strutting about with their gleaming stars of compliance. No no - vaccination is not personal healthcare at all. It's the Greater Good - the good of the state. Yes.

John Stone

Show Me Your Child's Vax Records

Can we add Dorit and Karen?

After all, this is not personal stuff about their children's health records, it is only a question of establishing whether they do what they tell others.

Show Me Your Child's Vax  Records

Emily, Seth, Trine, all skeptics - please scan and post your children's, vaccine records so that we know you put your money where your mouth is. Every vaccine has been administered. Yes? On time? I hope. Catch up? Of course, as necessary.


While you're at it, please show us your vaccine records. Yearly flu, all boosters, just in case, any and all recommended doses including Gardasil if you are under 30.

Eileen Nicole Simon

@Birgit Calhoun - Thank you for the links! Also, I had to look you up, and found the excerpts from your most interesting autobiography. My husband was a survivor of the firebombing of Dresden, also because their train could not get into the station crowded with refugee trains.

I am used to being called an idiot, but what is really needed is lots of discussion. Most important is neuropathology. Autism is associated with many etiological factors. All must affect a “final common pathway” in the brain. Language difficulties, lack of environmental awareness, and repetitive movements suggest vulnerable subcortical nuclei in the auditory pathway and the basal ganglia. The reason for this vulnerability is due to higher blood flow and metabolism in these brain structures. This was discovered by Seymour Kety. His seminal paper is online at

I labelled the auditory nuclei on p4 of the presentation I made at IACC 5 years ago

We need to insist that the IACC discuss all of the ideas presented to them. More congressional inquiries are needed, and legislation requiring open back-and-forth conversations with all of us, until all causes of autism are identified.

Birgit Calhoun

And what about inorganic mercury? Mercury(I) chloride caused acrodynia, aka pink disease. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calomel

Pink disease was caused by calomel which was used as teething powder. The tragedy was that the discovery of the cause of pink disease was not widely reported. The product was simply taken off the market. How did calomel quiet down babies while their were teething? It killed the nerves so that the pain couldn't be felt. Some kids died from that treatment.

There were various other treatments with inorganic mercury that were still recommended in medical textbooks in the 1960s. Mercury was used as a diuretic: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercurial_diuretic

The knowledge of mercury being really bad for human health has always been poopooed because the human body does not react to mercury immediately. The toxicity shows up gradually even in inorganic mercury. The "Danbury Shakes" among felt-makers in Danbury Connecticut did not stop until the 1940s when the use of mercury was prohibited.

Here is also a bit of trivia. Newtown, Connecticut, was once called Hattertown (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hattertown,_Connecticut). Mercury was used in felt making and Newtown was the hub of the felt-making industry. And why did the shakers live the way they did? Clue: They made hats.

So, I totally agree with "idiotic".


Dan, In my view, this week's wrap is perfect in all respects and a welcome find this morning after becoming so aggravated yesterday over what Forbes considers journalism.

I do agree with Dr. Schachter about making your title a subtitle and inserting one that would come up in a search.

Taximom, I agree with you about some of the studies, especially regarding the massive roll out in use and increase in exposure to EMFs, RFs, and wireless technology that also has not been studied as it is used today. Reference Dr. Herbert's chapter on autism in the BioInitiative Report (BioInitiative.org).

Also, Dr. Paul Rosch has said:

"It is not generally appreciated that there is a cumulative effect and that talking on a cell phone for just an hour a day for ten years can add up to 10,000 watts of radiation. That’s ten times more than from putting your head in a microwave oven. Pregnant women may also be at increased risk based on a study showing that children born to mothers who used a cell phone just two or three times a day during pregnancy showed a dramatic increase in hyperactivity and other behavioral and emotional problems. And for the 30% of children who had also used a cell phone by age 7, the incidence of behavioral problems was 80% higher!"

Eileen Nicole Simon

The picture of the baby about to have the umbilical cord clamped caught my attention in Willingham’s article on Forbes. I responded that augmented labor is likely to disrupt oxygen delivery from the placenta. I think this happened to my son when they thought I wasn’t “progressing” quickly enough in labor, and see the book by Marsden Wagner, Born in the USA. Too many interventions are made during childbirth. Absolutely the worst is clamping the umbilical cord, especially clamping before the first breath.

If placental circulation is clamped off before the lungs have taken over the function of respiration, the characteristic pattern of ischemic brainstem damage described decades ago in monkeys subjected to asphyxia at birth is likely to occur. There is no health benefit of any kind from clamping the umbilical cord. This is a huge medical error that should be stopped.

The current vaccine schedule was put in place at about the same time as the protocol for immediate clamping of the umbilical cord, in the mid 1980s. I will continue to suggest that disruption of the blood-brain barrier could make brainstem centers especially sensitive to vaccine components introduced into the circulation, especially hep B right at birth. See slide 7 of my presentation to the IACC 5 years ago.


@Bob Moffitt: Don't be too sure that the studies on living near freeways, aging parents, fat moms, sonograms, Prozac during infancy, etc., are so useless. All of those seem to have a link with either mercury exposure, or else with interfering with mercury excretion.

Aging parents? Yeah, right. Compare a 19-year-old inner city unmarried kid with a 45-year-old father with a good job and health insurance. Which one is more likely to take his babies in for their vaccination visits? That's right, the AGING PARENT.

Who is more likely to live near a freeway, the aging parent with the health insurance, or the teen parent on welfare?

Who is more likely to get one or more sonograms? The woman with health insurance, or the woman on welfare? And which one was more likely to vaccinate? (And sonograms may indeed be contributing to the autism crisis as well.)

And if depakote can cause brain damage consistent with autism, why not Prozac?

I hadn't seen a study on fat moms, but I saw one linking moms with celiac to babies with autism. That one is so obvious, we should all be screaming about it. Who is more likely to have a vitaminD-deficient baby than a mom with celiac disease? Why is that important? D-deficiency means glutathione depletion. Without glutathione, you can't excrete those heavy metals.

Don't be so anxious to trash all those studies. They are actually bolstering the vaccine-autism connection.


"That's your objective, to make it so convoluted that anyone can have a theory, but no one's got the facts." -Edge of Darkness

I doubt there was any original motive, but to limit damage once understood the former concept evolved in vaccine damage obfuscation.


Dan, your points about mercury--ethyl, methyl, and the whole kit and caboodle--are spot-on.

But do you really think your headline "You're an Idiot, Emily" and supposedly cutesy-folksy "ain't-a-gonna happen" phrases are debate winners? Or even appropriate?

They're not. Especially if you're starting your post with the complaint, "Emily turned nasty on Anne." You just out-nastied Emily.

I'm annoyed as heck that you would do this--AND I'M ON YOUR SIDE. You should know better than to hand the anti-choice crowd a reason to point fingers at us and call us names.

You don't need to post my comment if you don't think it's appropriate. But for Pete's sake, would you guys please try not to sink to Orac's level? Maybe do a little editing? If you're turning off people on your own side, imagine how others might be reacting.

Michael B Schachter MD, CNS

I'd like to see the title of this article as: "Ethyl Mercury Just as Dangerous as Methyl Mercury" and then in parenthesis (You're an Idiot, Emily). I think it is important for this point to be made in headlines.

Michael B Schachter MD, CNS

Great article Dan. How can we get this information out to the public? Are there any major media out there brave enough to print this masterpiece or is the pharmaceutical industry just too strong to buck the misinformation being fed to the majority of US citizens?

Jolly Roger

I just find it hilarious that, to back up their tobacco science, these mainstream media pharmaceutical promoters can't escape having to link to Skeptic sources like Novella. How EMBARRASSING that is at this point.

First there are Skeptic icons Sam Harris's and Dawkins' rants against Islam, with Harris clearly verging on genocidal and racialist: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/apr/03/sam-harris-muslim-animus

Then, while spending years trying to erect the classic strawman target out of vaccine safety advocacy by tarring anyone who so much as questions the perfect safety of an industrial product with the "anti-vaccine extremist" brush, now industry PR mavens find themselves in the uncomfortable situation of only being able to source and cite their arguments with material from a PR front group which currently has a massive rape and sexual harassment scandal exploding in its ranks.

The treatment of alleged victims of these assaults by the Skeptics is incredibly ugly since they're clearly being used as chits in an internal status battle between the top monkeys, all of whom are real gems in their own right. http://atheistforums.com/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=1982 But as ugly as it is, it's telling seeing the multiple allegations of rape, stalking, assault and quid pro quo harassment within the Skeptics put down via the same rhetoric that's usually reserved for consumer safety advocates.

In any case, here's Novella, founder of Skeptic hub Science Based Medicine whom Willingham linked to, standing proudly with Michael Shermer, Skeptic Magazine editor, alleged serial mauler of the Skeptics. http://www.skeptic.com/eskeptic/08-10-29images/SkepticBlog_cast.jpg

Shermer with Skeptic pharma astroturfer David Gorski, also editor of Science Based Medicine: http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/ShermerGorski2.jpg

Skeptic Seth Mnookin-- who devoted several paragraphs to Andrew and Carmel Wakefield's appearance in Panic Virus in a blatant attempt to objectify and sexualize them-- rhapsodizing about Michael Shermer's support for Panic Virus: http://sethmnookin.com/tag/michael-shermer/

They can suck it-- seriously. Of course, only with consent of the other party...

no vac

there is no point of arguing with the scientific idiots, who never had a serious biochemistry, biology or chemistry course. They understand nothing and are incapable of critical thinking, they are like parrots only repeating pharma lies and propaganda. These people should be ignored but their monstrous stupidity should be shown to the publishers of magazines, where they publish.

John Stone


Yes, it is unbelievable - all based on the farcically conducted, hopelessly conflicted, long ago utterly disproven Pichichero study. I could scarcely believe my eyes back in January when the Gates gang wheeled it out all over again as their justification before the UN for retaining mercury in vaccines with an article in New Scientist entitled 'Not All Mercury is Toxic'.


It is idiotic, it is stupid and it is utterly shameless - of course, it worked like a charm. It is not us who are trying to claim the earth is flat.



Thanks for addressing the ridiculous and currently very popular contention that Ethyl is the nice, harmless kind of mercury unlike her very mean and toxic friend Methyl.

Louis Conte

I notice this pattern - not just limited to Forbes - of not asking follow up questions and simply regurgitating what's in a press release.

It is also my opinion that Anne had a much better week than Emily.


Bob Moffitt

It should be noted .. for decades .. public health agencies have absolutely refused to conduct .. or .. even support pending federal legislation .. that seeks to provide funds for a scientific, independent study of "vaccinated v. unvaccinated" populations to ascertain if BOTH populations have suffered the same dramatic, iexplicable, increase in chronic autoimmune disorders (including autism) that were far less common in all previous, less vaccinated generations.

Public health officials have created the ludicrous pretense for not conducting this study .. which is .. such a study would be "unethical" .. requiring children be denied vaccines to create the unvaccinated population, thereby exposing those unvaccinated children to diseases they would otherwise be vaccinated for.

However .. the latest study "linking autism to drugs administered to induce labor in women" .. is reported to be "the biggest study of its kind .. matching 625,042 births with public school data from the late 1990s through 2008" .. thereby clearly providing evidence that public health officials have the data, resources and expertise to conduct such a "retrospective" study of vaccinated v. unvaccinated populations .. they lack only the will to do so.

And so .. yes .. they will continue to conduct useless studies of pet shampoos, living near freeways, aging parents, fat moms, sonograms, Prozac during infancy .. on and on ad nauseam. Why shouldn't they continue to do what they have been doing all these years? It works for THEM.

After all, these studies are not meant to identify what caused the autism epidemic .. or .. for that matter .. what has caused the undeniable increase in chronic childhood diseases/disorders.

The ONLY use for these supposedly "random" studies is to "muddy-the-waters" .. cleverly creating "plausible denial" theories so public health officials can continue to spew their tragic mantra "The benefits of vaccines clearly outweigh the risks".


I agree with your byline but I personally would have put an "f'n" in front of idiot. Always enjoy your articles Dan, keep up the good fight.

John Stone

Hi Dan,

I hadn't really noticed a recovery - perhaps Snowden said this in recognition of the fact that he was being interviewed by the NYT. Of course, the Guardian are unspeakable in their own right, although they did oppose the Iraq war.


Jim Thompson

Dan, in the meantime CDC continues to fund the Vaccines For Children program which provides funds for Thimerosal preserved flu vaccines (D009 mercury hazardous waste if unused) to be given to infants and schoolchildren.

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