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Dan Olmsted's: Six Bad Ideas that Triggered the Autism Epidemic

6Note: Our dear Dan wrote this post in 2015 at the end of the year. I miss him every single day. I know you do too. We've weathered a rotten year, friends. And I couldn't have done this without your support, financial, emotional, content, in every way. Thank you. KIM

By Dan Olmsted

We probably all know the saying that Ideas Matter. Lately I’ve been mulling a handful of ideas – very bad ideas, I’d say – that have come together to trigger, expand, and perpetuate the autism epidemic and a host of allied disorders that constitute The Age of Autism.

Today I’m going to lay them out in brief, and in coming days I’ll say more about each one, and end with the counter-ideas that could really bring us a happy new year.

Please add your own!

Bad Idea Number One. Vaccines are the Eric Clapton of Medicine; they are God. Vaccines are the number one medical accomplishment of all time, and every day in every way they make our world safer and safer. Bow down!

Bad Idea Number Two. The evidence for Number One is clear. “Study after study” has shown that vaccines work wonderfully and that the so-called “risks” are effectively zero – a one-in-a-million chance of anything serious happening. (“One in a million” is pharma speak for zip, zilch, nada, roll up your sleeve.)

Bad Idea Number Three. Disagreeing with Numbers One and Two is Unacceptable Speech. Claims that vaccines are more dangerous than advertised are bogus and should be suppressed. You need to be a conspiracy theorist, a purveyor of junk science, a pathetically gullible parent looking for someone to blame for your damaged kid, or out-and-out anti-vaccine to harbor such ideas.  

Bad Idea Number Four. Conflicts Don’t Count. Drugmakers, doctors, legislators, bureaucrats, TV programs buoyed by pharma money are immune to the usual concerns that conflicts of interest -- profits, incentives, campaign contributions, ad dollars, liability worries -- require extra vigilance by the press and public. The drug companies may be caught red-handed in corrupt dealing, Congress bought off, the media lazy and desperate for drug dollars, but when it comes to vaccines (see Number One), they have only our health at heart!

Bad Idea Number Five. Because the first four are true, we must trust The Experts who are working hard every day to help us stay happy and healthy. They are god’s messengers on earth.

Trust. The. Experts.

Bad Idea Number Six: Because all the foregoing is undisputed fact, no one should be exempt from any of the vaccines currently recommended, and there is no limit except for medical ingenuity on the number of vaccines we can and should receive. Experts say we can take 10,000 vaccines at once with no ill effects.  There are hundreds of new vaccines in the pipeline, which is unalloyed good news. Vaccines should continue to be given for any reason “the experts” propose.

You and your children and their children are so very, very fortunate to live in a time when more and more safe and effective vaccines are available. And you haven’t seen anything yet!


OK, that’s my list. To me all those ideas fit together and explain how we got from a few targeted shots against the ancestral scourges of mankind (to use Harris Coulter’s marvelous phrase) to a runaway public health nightmare of chronic and developmental illnesses that most people don’t notice are caused by vaccines that most people don’t need.

There are other ways to put the ideas together – as we did in our book The Age of Autism, for example, showing that a long history of medical use and abuse of mercury fed into vaccine dangers that went unrecognized even as they increased exponentially, with regulators in too deep to ever face the truth. That the autism epidemic started with the first uses of ethyl mercury and then rose along with that exposure. That the truth has been covered up by the CDC and a whistleblower’s testimony has been suppressed by the medical and media vaccine establishment.

We could start with the corruption of science, move on to bogus studies, suppression of dissent, and so on.

They all lead to the same place – a very bad one triggered by a small number of very bad ideas that interlock like the links in a fence and keep out the truth. Ideas matter, and we need to make clear how bad these are, then propose new and better ones. As Thomas Kuhn said in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, big bad ideas – he called them paradigms – don’t just vanish on their own, they need to be displaced by new and better ones.


Dan Olmsted is Editor of Age of Autism.


Bob Martin

https://vaccineinjurycompensationcanada.weebly.com/ SHARE IF YOU CARE bob Martin GBS Survivor story.


Shelley Tzorfas sums up the public's obstacle to truth so well:
"...for society to Lose the ability to Observe things around them despite what the media claims and to develop more independent thoughts and actions..."

People forget that every word, phrase, sentence is an attempt to inform and/or persuade.

Critical thinking skills are not adequately taught in public education. If we cannot sufficiently perform textual analysis, we fall back on the type of dysfunctional thought mechanisms --denial, rationalization, etc. -- that have passively and actively excused the epidemic of vaccine-induced autism.


If you are the parent of a vaccine injured child the benefits DO NOT far outweigh the risks. We need research to reverse the damage done by the overly aggressive vaccines or society will collapse! Nothing is impossible and it can be reversed!

David Weiner

For sure, all of these bad ideas are significant, but I don't believe that they address the ideas which are most fundamental to the disaster at hand.

The idea that coercive governments CAN and SHOULD take responsibility for the health of their subjects. The idea, disproven over and over during the 20th century, that governments can centrally plan an economy, or any subset of it, and achieve anything close to their purported objectives (rather than just the opposite). The (implicit) idea that governments and doctors and other health professionals care more and are in a better position to make decisions for children than their own parents.

These are the most egregious philosophical and economic mistakes, in my opinion.

Shelley Tzorfas

Another Bad Idea is for society to Lose the ability to Observe things around them despite what the media claims and to develop more independent thoughts and actions...
Somehow our society does not see or respond to the 1 in 36 kids with Brain Encephalitis aka Autism, nor the 1 in 27.5 boys who are affected
Somehow we do not see or respond to the 1 in 20 kids with seizures
Somehow we don't see the kids with speech delay or the 1 in 10 with anaphylactic food allergies
Somehow we don't see the exploding cancer rates in toddlers and children
Somehow we don't see the learning disabled children
Somehow we don't see the deaths from SIDS, SUDS, or SADS
Somehow we just don't see

John Stone


Yes, I think it counts as "a crime against humanity" whatever the present position in law in so many countries. The point I think when I have used the term "hit and run" as I have often done, is based on bad laws or the absence of proper ones. The position after all of anyone claiming injury in these circumstances is that there is the onus on them to prove it, with no active or independent monitoring and every institution of state or government in denial. There is no point at which anyone admits harm: it might be conceded in law in certain instances on the balance of probabilities, but awards and compensation are only made on a no fault basis, and the evidence is suppressed in order to avoid creating precedents. To create frameworks of law of this kind is to invite injury to be inflicted, and the state machine to get ever more cynical and careless.


I miss Dan's writing style so much. Bow down!

go Trump

Aside from the sacred industry of those who print US currency and pass it out, there is nothing more precious to Wall Street than the US & World vaccine program.

John Stone


I'll believe it when I see it.

Angus Files

The CDC will be having `a come to Jesus moment` when they get the budget reduced by 1.2 billion this year...debunk that pharma if you can.

Pharma for Prison

John Stone


Only I am generally unhappy with the term “debunk” which often in media terms denotes an abusive and manipulative process which stops short of forensic dissection or disproof. The strong evidence is on our side, the other side “debunk”. The great “debunker” is someone like Gorski who smatters personal tirades with bits of scientific arguments. I must read the Moskowitz book.

bob moffit

@ John

" So, if you look at it from one perspective the program is magnificent in its seamless perfection, and if you look at it from another it is just mass hit and run."

I prefer to identify "mass hit and run" as a CRIME.

I just finished reading "Vaccines - A Reappraisal" by Dr. Richard Moskowitz .. and .. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants information to debunk the MYTHS upon which the entire vaccine industry relies upon to .. as you say .. "defeat the truth".

John Stone


Yes, it is wishful thinking but also it is ideology, and it is there to defeat truth. Of course, there is the theoretical possibility of "net-benefit" from an intervention, but the grand generalisation obviates having ever to look at the detail. And once you have gone down the line of having a universal intervention you really don't want to know about its negative effects. Like our friend "Fred Chopin" you just want people to stop whining.

Of course, there is also the vain proposition that harm is very rare: 1 in 100,000, 1 in a million cases. The British government from 1980, following legislation, were placed in the position of making awards (not compensation) to the "rare" cases of harm and found themselves compensating about 600 cases in the first two years. Since then the number of cases has dwindled despite the vast expansion of the program. The bureaucracy had now avoided making any awards at all for more than seven years despite the fact that hundreds of millions of products will have been dispensed. So, if you look at it from one perspective the program is magnificent in its seamless perfection, and if you look at it fron another it is just mass hit and run.

bob moffit

Dan will always be missed .. AND .. Dan will always be remembered.

I would only add two "bad ideas" to Dan's list:

#1 .. The basic idea that science can create a "one size fits all vaccine" .. is not science .. it is wishful thinking masquerading as science.

#2 .. The basic idea held by public health officials .. in every instance .. the "benefits of vaccines far outweighs the risks" .. is again .. wishful thinking masquerading as scientific certainty.

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