Rosie O’Donnell vs Evidence of Harm

4 Feb

I have to admit that before this whole thing kicked off, I didn’t really know who Rosie O’Donnell was (I do now so no need for explanations :o) ) and that my first real knowledge was David Kirby’s recent Huffington Post blog entry wherein he describes being invited to a show called The View that Ms O’Donnell presents….and how put out he was that the great DK did not actually end up being called upon to impart his wisdom:

During the breaks, however, I could hear women in the audience murmuring to each other: “But what causes it? Why so many children? What about mercury? How can I get more information?”

Yeah. I’ll bet.

My head spun as the show wrapped up. Had The View finally squelched Rosie O’Donnell? Did mercury trump Trump? Was this the heavy metal that dare not speak its name, at least on a network flush with Pharma ads?

Oho….from what I can gather, Ms O’Donnell is about as outspoken as you can get, even by American standards. Kirby thinks that she’s been ‘got at’ by the Pharma’s.

Over on the EoH Yahoo Group, opinions on Ms O’Donnell were changing from ‘I love Rosie’ to:

I used to be a Rosie Supporter but for some reason, she doesn’t really want to talk about Causation! Who is paying her!

Let’s be clear here. When someone who frequents the EoH group talks about ‘causation’ they really mean thiomersal. There’s a whole bunch of pissed off people here because Ms O’Donnell didn’t venerate David Kirby and wasn’t interested in the thiomersal issue. And why wasn’t she interested in the thiomersal issue?

Because its crap maybe?

No, couldn’t be that:

Too bad our kids are autistic and not gay….We could have show after show on anything we wanted.

I subsequently learned Ms O’Donnell is gay. How unnerving to discover John Best isn’t the only homophobe on EoH.

Ms O’Donnell also has a blog which the EoH members flocked to in an effort to wring ‘the truth’ (you know that evil Pharma had ‘gotten to’ her). The lovely Erik asked her:

Rosie, “The View” avoided any discussion of Autism’s causality, and only picks orgs as resources who have no interest in the thimerosal controversy. Why? Have you been pressured?

To which Ms O’Donnell answered, fairly unequivocally:

pressured? by who
listen
I ROSIE ODONNELL
chose not to do causation
ME

Over on Conspiracy theory Central EoH Roger asks:

Why do we think that the author of these messages is actually Rosie?

Woooo – scary! Good ol’ list Daddy, Lenny adds:

She has a pronounced style. It would not be so hard to do her.

So, here’s Ms O’Donnell not venerating at the feet of David Kirby – this must be a conspiracy. And here’s Ms O’Donnell having her blog authored by Shadowy Figures……I can almost feel the Black Helicopters taking off, can’t you?

In an amusing side issue, the Arthur Allen book, Vaccine was also being discussed on EoH and the members were taking extreme umbrage at being described as:

“much of the “antivaccinist” leadership is composed of countercultural types who view life through the prism of conspiracy
theory: the government lies, the drug companies are evil, the medical profession is corrupt; trust the Internet instead.”

Which characterisation was described as ‘grossly unfair’ by several EoH members. Yeah, how unfair to suggest people who accuse people of Big Pharma gaggings and ghost written blogs as being into conspiracies. How could they come to _that_ conclusion eh?

What’s the actual issue here? According to mainstream reports I’ve read it was a good program that focussed on awareness and adult services. Here’s the unvarnished take an awareness from EoH:

I am so tired of awareness. We are more than aware of autism. We are so over awareness. I understand that her friends children may be young and they are not as far along as we are.

and

I don’t give a shit if my neighbor is enlightened- I want my son to stop banging his head on the floor (my son doesn’t do that anymore- but just as an illustration)

Here are some other commenters from Ms O’Donnell’s blog. Lets hope EoH’ers can someday see why they are true:

You do a wonderful show on autism – whole show – compassionate – building awareness – yet you get critical letters – Look at what you DID do – some people are never happy. Thanks for not giving up.

Rosie – Everyone keeps coming after you for not speaking of causation on the autism show. No one is mentioning that thimerosal has been removed from shots, but autism diagnosis haven’t declined.

Have you read David Kirby recent blog? As a mom of a 5 year old son with autism I think you guys did a wonderful show. Let’s focus on the good

My nephew is severely AUTISTIC -doesn’t speak most of the time- HE HAS HAD NO SHOTS –

People don’t get it. On Autism. Awareness is about enlightening. Cause is looking for blame. Awareness is light and moving forward. Blame is being stuck.

As a health educator/parent of 2 boys with autism, I applaud you on NOT getting into the causes, as no-one is sure of the one or more ways children get autism, its important to understand their world.

Please people – get over it – it didn’t happen. Stop feeding money to quacks. Your kids are going to need a parent focussed on _them_ , not on their own needs to fuel a conspiracy theory because they are stuck in guilt and blame. Your kids are autistic. It wasn’t your fault. It wasn’t your doctors fault. It wasn’t Pharma’s fault. This is just they way life is.

37 Responses to “Rosie O’Donnell vs Evidence of Harm”

  1. laurentius-rex February 4, 2007 at 10:09 #

    And of course there are people in the world who don’t know who Rosie O Donell is and care even less.

    Bread and Circuses as the Romans used to say, keeps the people happy so they won’t revolt.

    If people keep on seeing conspiracies everywhere they will miss the true conspiracy, that in which they are active participants, the conspiracy they enter into not to look beyond there own narrow perception, lambs to the slaughter.

    David Kirby, Rosie O Donell, Brian Deer, journalists all, the only difference is that they take different sides, in the gladiatorial arena presided over by a naked emporer.

  2. Phil February 4, 2007 at 11:02 #

    Good for Rosie! Just what the situation needed – a good old fashioned sceptic!

    Funny thing though – a lot of people have no time for sceptics. I loved your reflection on Best and his homophobia (I already knew Rosie is a lesbian, but then I probably know more about her than you do, Kev – no offence!). You’ll find that the vast majority of right wing religious fruitcakes hate the sceptics as much as they hate homosexuals! It’s the church v Charles Darwin all over again!!

    I’m a sceptic. It wouldn’t surprise me if most adult ASD people are – because we have to live off logic to survive as best we can (personal experience talking there). And you know what? I think being a sceptic is a core “symptom” – for want of a better word – of an ASD. Now you take into account Best’s usual line of “brain damage”, and the line as I see it inevitably leads to the likes of Rosie, Charles Darwin, James Randy and any other NT sceptic getting the same label by proxy!

    Let’s see the curbies wriggle their way out of that one!

    (When was this shown in the UK, Kev? I get The View on pay TV here in Australia – I’ll try and catch the episode if I can)

  3. Phil February 4, 2007 at 11:09 #

    Actually – strike that question. I should have looked at Kirby’s blog before asking. It was on in the US on the 29th of January.

    And just on that as well – I noted with interest that Rosie pushed the blame for the lack of “causation discussion” to the producers. My guess is they didn’t want a free for all so soon after the Donald Trump bru ha ha – because I think they knew they would have got it and the cow manure would have hit the fan something chronic, far nastier than the response to Rosie v The Don.

    So much so The View would have turned into a Jerry Springer rip off! And who wants that?

    In that light – the producers made the right decision.

    (Of course – the curebies will call the producers paid off by the drug companies won’t they? Predictable as ever!)

  4. Ruth February 4, 2007 at 12:30 #

    Rosie starred in a movie on American TV called ‘Riding in Buses with my Sister’. In it she plays an adult with mental retardation who has friends and a good life. It isn’t perfect, but it nice to see people with different wiring shown as people and not empty shells.

  5. susan senator February 4, 2007 at 13:36 #

    Riding the Bus With My Sister is a very well-done movie that focuses on the relationship of two sisters, one who is DD and one who is typically developed. (Andie McDowell plays the typical sister, though what sister is typical?) Anyway, I loved it.

    I also loved this blog post, Kev. I did not see “The View” autism episode but I did try to be on it with my perspective of “Making Peace,” etc. The whole conspiracy thing is a terrible, slippery slope that saps your energy and I do wonder if kids whose parents are that absorbed in feeling negative about just this one aspect of their lives can really grow and blossom. And can the parents?

  6. Another Voice February 4, 2007 at 14:15 #

    I am glad that Rosie O’Donnell directed the conversation away from the causes of autism. The causes will not be determined on TV talk shows, if they can be found they will be identified through medical research.

    Mr. Kirby feels left out because he was not granted the floor to advertise his book. As a newspaper reporter he has learned that controversy sells and he needs to create a controversy where ever he goes.

    Personally, I am fully stocked up on controversy and don’t need any more. The data being used in these “debates” is so flawed and twisted, that it turns the conversation into irrational rants.

    The issues that need to be dealt with should center around what can we do today that will improve the lives of children tomorrow. That is worth our energy and thought.

  7. Joseph February 4, 2007 at 14:29 #

    “Why do we think that the author of these messages is actually Rosie?”

    Those guys are hilarious.

  8. Joel Smith February 4, 2007 at 14:43 #

    What gets me about this whole mess is the idea that nearly everyone (except EOHers!) would be able to be silenced by “big pharma.” I also never cease to be amazed that somehow the US government is the key to the whole thing succeeding – a very US-centric view if I might say. I’m pretty sure that at least one country somewhere in the world would tell the US to shove it if we tried to tell them “cover up the truth on how we are poisoning kids.”

    I mean – really – the accusation is that the government and pharma are knowingly killing kids and causing nearly every neurological condition under the son (and some others, too). Heck, many of the EOH members actually believe big pharma caused AIDS (seriously, they believe that).

    This is despite the fact that there have been some pretty big stories in the last couple years about legitimate problems with the pharmacutical companies (like drugs that had side effects that weren’t disclosed – anti-depresants *increasing* risk of suicide in some teenagers, for instance). From what I see, most news shows will put a negative story on the air, even if it does piss off a sponsor or two (examples: Enron, airliner crashes, automotive safety problems, the HP spying, unsafe toys, etc). They also are willing to piss off the current president and even congress at times (for instance, the war in Iraq, global warming, terrorism policy, corruption among both parties, etc).

    Clearly they don’t seem bought to me. But apparently the big pharma connection and Thimerosal is much, much, much stronger than any little things like wanting to control reporting on a war in Iraq or major mismanagement at the corporate level. And I’m sure no one could possibly have owned Ford, HP, or Endron stock – at least not anyone in charge of a TV network… (that’s another accusation – someone somewhere holds some stock, so they must be bought)

    Personally I’m glad these guys are acting the way they are. Someone might believe them if they didn’t spout off about the “true” cause of AIDS and how no news show would ever say anything against the US government or a US corporation.

  9. Olive February 4, 2007 at 16:27 #

    Thanks for your great response to DK’s ridiculous writing. In the face of propaganda, your logic is soothing.

  10. Brian Deer February 4, 2007 at 16:58 #

    Having looked over the years, often in excruciating detail, at a surprisingly large number of vaccine litigation claimant’s cases, my perpective with regards to all this conspiracy/corruption/abuse stuff that swirls around this thing is quite simple.

    So many of the parents make very small adjustments to what lawyers call the “specific facts” of their case. Some misread distant events. Some convince themselves. Some are outright liars. Now, you can argue what a parent will or won’t do to advance the best interests of their children (particularly if they need money). But there are serious moral issues if others might come to harm as a result.

    It’s very important for many of these parents to believe (a) that, whatever the facts, these vaccines did the damage; and (b) whatever little adjustments to the facts they’ve made themselves, the “other side” are bigtime crooks.

    So you get a major scare based on countless little adjustments, and a crusade of venomous personal abuse.

    It’s a psychological rebalancing exercise. Otherwise a lot of these people couldn’t look at themselves in the bathroom mirror.

  11. livsparents February 4, 2007 at 17:08 #

    Rosie tied up in a dark room to a chair, with a single light shining on a computer while a ghost writer spews mercury laded lies onto a blog. Priceless…simply, delusionally priceless.

    Why should EVERY show about autism need to include unsubstantiated theories about causation?

    I had heard they were a little too ‘Rosie’ as to availability of services, but I think they went after a human side that has not been usually reported.

  12. Bartholomew Cubbins February 4, 2007 at 18:08 #

    Oho….from what I can gather, Ms O’Donnell is about as outspoken as you can get, even by American standards.

    /puts on his egomaniac voice, clears throat
    “Yer welcome for double-ya double-ya 2, there partner.”

    I also never cease to be amazed that somehow the US government is the key to the whole thing succeeding – a very US-centric view if I might say. I’m pretty sure that at least one country somewhere in the world would tell the US to shove it if we tried to tell them “cover up the truth on how we are poisoning kids.”

    Bears repeating. Again and again.

    I’ve never met anyone who agrees with Rosie on every topic so why would anyone assume that she’s going to parrot their POV on a topic unless she’s already made a statement about it? Idiots. And their neanderthalesque skewering of her on her blog, on Kirby’s post at Huffpo, and on the EoH lists prove that the militia dosen’t care about consensus, they don’t care about educating or convincing anyone of their POV. No, instead they’ve drawn a line in the sand and if you don’t spout off GR’s Mercury Myths then you’re on the wrong side.

    If you listen really closely, you can hear the backroom shuffling of cellphones as apologies are being handed out. The only question is who called Rosie or her assistants to apologize? Autism Speaks representatives trying to distance themselves from EoHers/GRbots? DK himself? Who knows, but it is rather interesting to note that Kirby and Erik et al. effectively pushed their own cause back a year with major media outlets, especially with someone who might have been an ally to them.

  13. mcewen February 4, 2007 at 18:11 #

    I saw somewhere [find it clever techy person] that the whole show is available for your delectation on U-Tube.
    Cheers dearies

  14. Club 166 February 4, 2007 at 18:41 #

    I searched at youtube.com for “The View, autism” and it looks like they have the show on there, split up into 5 parts.

    The first part is here:

    All in all I thought the show was pretty good. I had some problems with some of the language used (cure, coming out of autism) which implied that autism was something to be gotten rid of.

    But they did focus a lot on services, while again giving the impression that there are a lot more services out there that are readily available.

    Finally, some of the parents seemed to “talk around” their autistic kids that were sitting right next to them. Not the best way to relate to your kids, I would think.

    But all in all, it was positive, and not tainted by the negativity that the mercury folks seem to bring to the table.

  15. kristina February 4, 2007 at 19:12 #

    What amazes me is how much authority, cultural and otherwise, is being allotted to Ms. O’Donnell (certainly by DK). Whoever is in charge, they must be quite amused at how the plebs are going at each other.

  16. Richard February 4, 2007 at 20:16 #

    About a week before the taping, I was invited to be on the show with my daughter (but I won’t let her be photographed or filmed). The producer made it clear to me that the show would be about experiences of parents with children with autism and not at all about the science of autism. I wonder why they even had Kirby in the audience if, a week earlier they were quite unequivocal that this was going to be about how parents are coping/struggling/understanding autism.

  17. Phil February 4, 2007 at 21:31 #

    I’ve altered my view about Rosie now, because I was just reading up at the forum at Wrong Planet – and they were scathing over there about the issue of “coming out” of Autism, and constantly referring to it as a “disease”. Whilst the causation thing was never touched (thankfully), it was still promoted as a solvable problem and apparently insinuated that the solution was complete when it wasn’t. Improved – yes (probably ABA at work at a guess) but NOT SOLVED! That was the gist of what those who saw the show said. Apparently they labelled Temple Grandin as an example of “coming out” (Temple was a guest they actually spoke to). Get that will you??

    It was shown here in Australia, and I missed it unfortunately in spite of the repeat yesterday (Sunday)

    I thought the producers were avoiding stirring the pot completely. They didn’t even though they avoided the science. I’m a bit annoyed about this show now despite the fact that they cold shouldered Kirby – which is about the only real positive that came out of it.

  18. Jim Laidler February 4, 2007 at 22:14 #

    If “Big Pharma” can “buy off” Rosie O’Donnell, why can’t they “buy off” David Kirby? Is he just too honest and ethical to be bought?

    Or is there another explanation?

    Jim Laidler

  19. Joel Smith February 4, 2007 at 23:16 #

    Yep, Kirby and any company that makes a chelation product is beyond being bought, because they are saving kids from being poisoned.

    Not like those evil organizations like the World Health Organization which – get this – wants to vaccinate kids. Evil upon evil!!!

    And don’t forget to throw in a forest fire for good measure. I’m pretty sure the Hurricane in New Orleans will come up soon (after all it washed chemicals into the ocean).

    Or so the logic goes. I probably am misunderstanding their logic, because my brain just isn’t that twisted.

  20. Bartholomew Cubbins February 5, 2007 at 01:42 #

    Richard,
    That’s really interesting, thanks for sharing. I am not surprised by this. I can only imagine that there was a powerplay scramble from certain powers that be to get certain people on the show and that the producers were caught off guard by the pressure. They accommodated and came away with what was probably a decent show.

    I can’t imagine biting the hand that could potentially feed me, but that’s what these people did when going after RO.

  21. Ms. Clark February 5, 2007 at 01:53 #

    Dr. Laidler’s comment reminded me of another irony, the mercury malicia say all politicians are corrupt to the bone, except the ones on their side. Never mind how creepy their two faves are, Burton and whatsisface.

  22. Friend in California February 5, 2007 at 04:54 #

    Don’t the EOH’ers realize that they are DIS-couraging, not EN-couraging their potential “publicists” with this type of aggressive approach?
    Fortunately, the answer is no.

  23. 666sigma February 7, 2007 at 12:11 #

    I saw several clips on the show on You Tube. The show was very well done and was balanced. There was no need to discuss the causation because it was obvious that wasn’t what the show was about. It was about real people and how autism had impacted their life.

    They did stress the importance of early intervention and how getting children help as early as possible could make a real difference. One segment showed a “recovered” 10 year old and there was no doubt that this kid was “recovered.” You can use any name you want for it, but he had no obvious social deficits.

    It was a nice show.

  24. 666sigma February 7, 2007 at 12:45 #

    I just read through the posts and would recommend for anyone interested to go and view the 5 segments for themselves . . .

    http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=tiffsherwood

    I thought the language was appropriate for each of the situations. The children that could speak were allowed to talk at some point so no one was “talked around.” In each case, it was obvious that the parents loved their children regardless of their situation. The children ran the gamut from those who could not speak to one who was “cured” or “recovered” or whatever other LABEL you want to use.

    The spectrum was on display and they produced a good well-balanced show that was positive in all respects. The venom between the Neurodiversity and Mercury crowds is laughable, especially since they are both soooooooo wrong.

    Speaking of the Neurodiverse crowd, I have yet to see one post this article even though it is all over the news . . .

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070206095722.htm

    Interestingly enough, this is the first study out of Denmark that used consistent data.

  25. clone3g February 7, 2007 at 17:01 #

    666sigma said: “The venom between the Neurodiversity and Mercury crowds is laughable, especially since they are both soooooooo wrong.”

    Well I guess it’s easy to identify members of the “mercury crowd”, I’m assuming this crowd would consist of people who believe mercury causes autism, but who or what is this “neurodiversity crowd” and what are they soooooooo wrong about?

  26. Bartholomew Cubbins February 7, 2007 at 18:18 #

    The venom between the Neurodiversity and Mercury crowds is laughable, especially since they are both soooooooo wrong.

    In one corner stands autism = mercury poisoning people.

    In a different ring stands the NDs:
    Neurodiversity is a controversial idea that asserts that atypical (neurodivergent) neurological wiring is a normal human difference that is to be tolerated and respected as any other human difference.”

    It’s tough to see how respecting someone can be soooooo wrong. It’s an ethos, not a testable hypothesis.

  27. anonimouse February 7, 2007 at 19:19 #

    666sigma,

    Who are you trying to fool?

  28. Ms. Clark February 7, 2007 at 22:27 #

    I hadn’t seen any of the View except for some clips that were on the ABC website. But this one with Jeff Sell and wife is pretty amazing

    Jeff Sell is a gung ho mercury dad and is a lawyer who makes a living at least in part off of pushing the thimerosal lies. His website has some great quotable garbage about thimerosal some of which I sent on to the IACUC people at Columbia because it describes nicely part of the garbage Mady Hornig pulled.

    He attacked Dr. Grinker for daring to say that there hadn’t been an epidemic. He’s on the board of ASA as the resident mercury dad.

    But he sat there on the View alternately whining about how awful his sons are (they sit right there next to him) and glowing about what they have added to their family. Totally bizarre. Mom talks about how great the “listservs” are, but knowing what they are about, the “listservs” are probably mercury malicia Yahoo! groups. It’s a pretty good bet that those boys have been chelated and secretin, and B12’d til the cows come home, only they are still autistic, so Jeff’s gotta sue someone…

  29. Phil February 7, 2007 at 22:29 #

    You can use any name you want for it, but he had no obvious social deficits.

    Which does NOT mean recovery at all! I can tell you that to the uninitiated I look perfectly normal and with no social deficits. But I have them! I’m on the spectrum. At best – if I was to agree with you (and I don’t) Autism has been replaced with another Spectrum Disorder.

    And that’s all I’ll say to this professional troll (be warned about this one if you aren’t already aware, Kev!)

  30. Ms. Clark February 7, 2007 at 22:44 #

    That kid doesn’t look normal. ABA 40 hours a week. It’s obscene, no matter how you paint it. The mom with the artist daughter said she had to get some dance and painting going on because the ABA was so bleak.

    In my opinion, Jake could easily get an Asperger’s dx now. He sits very oddly, hanging on the edge and moving kind of lizard like except when he’s talking about something that makes him tune it, “Rolling Cones.” Mom says he’s socially appropriate, I’d like to see him in a group of kids who don’t know him.

    I’m not picking on him, I’d love to meet him, he’s probably a very nice boy.

    Jake might need support when he gets into college. He might not be able to deal with the pressures of adult life in a normal way.

    Jake’s recovered and Dr. Temple Grandin is, too, according to this show. I’ve met Temple Grandin. NOT recovered. She doesn’t even say she is now, though she used to.

  31. MarkH February 8, 2007 at 00:44 #

    I’m sure you’re a very nice girl Ms. Clark, but sheesh – enough with the judgements and video diagnosis!

  32. Ms. Clark February 8, 2007 at 01:03 #

    More cranky judgements. I wonder what this 15 year old boy is thinking while he’s being trained with ABA.

    Tito Mukhopadhayay couldn’t speak any better than this young man but had (and has) a tremendous grasp on what’s going on around him. In “Strange Son” Portia Iversen describes how some researchers at UCSF figure out that Tito hears everything including his own speech in some kind of delayed or distorted way. He does hear everything, he just can’t use the information coming in in a timely way to respond normally.

    Which means that ABA would not work for him, ABA did not work for Dov Shestack according to his Strange Mom. Yet, somehow, even when Dov was supposed to be an empty shell and was being advertised as such by his parents, Dov was picking up on Hebrew and math, reading, spelling and all kinds of stuff, all the while looking like he was retarded and didn’t know what was going on around him. The put an alphabet board in front of him at around age 9 and found out he could spell very well and had a good brain inside that “empty shell.”

    It’s hard not to notice when a kid is being advertised as proof of a cure that he’s not actually cured at all. It’s not unlike the way most all parents think their child is the most beautiful. The parents on Rosie think their ABA paid off and gave them a normal boy. But he’s not normal. He’s not. Maybe people who think the kid looks normal don’t know what neurological issues look like. Autistics respond differently than typical people to sensory input, they move differently, they speak different. That kid has those signs. I’m not going to participate in the parents’ and Rosie’s unrealistic belief that he is normal.

  33. anonimouse February 8, 2007 at 15:30 #

    To suggest those allegedly recovered kids are “normal” and would do well in typical adolescent social situations is lunacy.

  34. David N. Andrews M. Ed. (Distinction) February 8, 2007 at 17:36 #

    “… even when Dov was supposed to be an empty shell and was being advertised as such by his parents, Dov was picking up on Hebrew and math, reading, spelling and all kinds of stuff, all the while looking like he was retarded and didn’t know what was going on around him. The put an alphabet board in front of him at around age 9 and found out he could spell very well and had a good brain inside that ’empty shell.'”

    To be honest, I’d consider filing charges on Dov’s parents for false claims. An ’empty shell’ could not learn anything, period: an ’empty shell’ notion of autism implies clearly that there is *nothing* inside the body.

    As an educational psychologist, I can’t think of any reason to call any child an ’empty shell’ if s/he can learn languages and mathematics – and to hell with whether the child is said to be ‘aware’ of his/her surroundings… it’s pretty bloody obvious that Dov was *very well aware* of his!

    The only reason they could possibly have for giving him such a despicable descriptor is to curry pity for themselves.

    That is a disgusting act of child abuse.

  35. anonimouse February 8, 2007 at 18:12 #

    You know, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that autistic children (or children with any kind of developmental disability for that matter) learn differently. But they clearly CAN learn, and to suggest that the ONLY way an autistic child can develop is with ABA or with biomedical treatments is silly on so many levels.

  36. Phil February 8, 2007 at 21:03 #

    The only reason they could possibly have for giving him such a despicable descriptor is to curry pity for themselves.

    A common tactic by a certain J.Best! Sorry, Kev if mentioning his name here is out of line in this case, but we all know it’s true.

    While I’m here, I was just thinking about ABA and what’s been said. Just theorising – maybe ABA is ineffective in treating and helping with HFA and Aspergers? Low functioning Autistics need help to – well, function. The note from David about “empty shell”s is potent. Just because an LFA child “appears” empty they aren’t. The brain works fine (putting pay to Best’s “brain damaged” argument). It just needs to be trained manually, which is what ABA is intended to achieve. But with HFA and certainly Aspergers, manually training is far more limited and needs to be specified – particularly socially. I am very much aware of that as I had to pursue my own version of “training” but because I hadn’t been diagnosed with AS I got every barrier you could think of. Even from psychiatrists who had no idea what they were dealing with (quacks in other words).

    But that’s my take on ABA. Any thoughts, David? (Oh BTW – keep punching on Best’s blog!)

  37. David N. Andrews M. Ed. (Distinction) February 9, 2007 at 00:47 #

    “You know, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that autistic children (or children with any kind of developmental disability for that matter) learn differently.”

    Indeed not. Which is what gets me about all these medical practitioners going round suggesting otherwise.

    “But they clearly CAN learn, and to suggest that the ONLY way an autistic child can develop is with ABA or with biomedical treatments is silly on so many levels.”

    Exactly. I did it without both ABA and biomed. And I doubt that I’m the first that did it, and I know damn well I’ll not be the last.

    What’s the issue for these people?

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