Review of the Introduction of Age of Autism – the book.

23 Aug

So begins the Olmsted/Blaxill upcoming book ‘Age of Autism’.

…instead of taking Kanner’s word for it, [we decided] to learn about these previously anonymous families ourselves. We took clues from his extensive case descriptions and started uncovering the identities of the original families. Time and again, we connected the occupations of the parents to plausible toxic exposures and especially to a new mercury compound first used in the 1930s as a disinfectant for seeds, a treatment for lumber, and a preservative in vaccines. Yes, the parents’ professions were clues— but not to their obsessions or their marriages or their parenting or their genetic oddities; instead, they pointed to a strikingly consistent pattern of familial exposures to the same toxic substance.

(emphasis authors, inserts mine)

This is the paragraph that sets the authors hypothesis out. When we look at it carefully, we can see exactly what its purpose is – its purpose is to fit a set of preconceived ideas that revolve around one central disproven hypothesis – that mercury in vaccines (thiomersal/thimerosal) causes autism.

I haven’t yet read the rest of the book but I’m pretty sure what I’m going to find. To talk about that now would just be conjecture however, so lets stick to what we have here.

According to Olmsted and Blaxill, syphilis treatment, hysteria, mental illness and a variety of modern illnesses are all caused by mercury. I’m very much looking forward to reading this section too. Olmsted & Blaxill use Pink disease (a definite form of mercury poisoning which looks nothing like autism to ‘justify’ the inclusion of these illnesses in the Introduction.

Blaxill and Omsted detail how they went on to meet “Donald T.” one of Kanner’s original cases:

By any mea sure, he has fared astonishingly well. President of his college fraternity and later the Forest Kiwanis Club, a pillar of his Presbyterian church, he had a long career at the local bank, plays a competitive game of golf, and regularly travels the world. We learned how “Donald T.” went from being the first unmistakable case of autism to the first unmistakable case of recovery.

So on one hand we have the doom and gloom of Pink disease (a foreshadow of autism according to Blaxill & Olmsted) which killed hundreds and then actual autism which doesn’t seem that bad. I’ll be very interested to see how Blaxill & Olmsted narrate Donald T.’s ‘recovery’…or could it have been that Donald T. was in fact one of the first cases of autism who also either moved ‘off the spectrum’ (as a certain percentage of autistic people do) or…y’know…he simply progressed as he got older. My guess is that Blaxill & Olmsted will reveal that Donald T. had some kind of miraculous exposure to a chelating agent or multi vitamins or some form of extreme biomed. Lets see.

The whole Introduction is about 6,000 words long. I can’t possibly attempt to review the whole thing and I won’t attempt to review the whole book either. These are the sections of the Intro that caught my eye particularly. Maybe others who have access to the Intro will tackle more. One thing you can be sure of, LBRB will be here to catch and expose the errors.

11 Responses to “Review of the Introduction of Age of Autism – the book.”

  1. brian August 24, 2010 at 00:03 #

    Olmsted and Blaxill wrote: “Yes, the parents’ professions were clues— but not to their obsessions or their marriages or their parenting or their genetic oddities; instead, they pointed to a strikingly consistent pattern of familial exposures to the same toxic substance.”

    Of course, Olmsted also wrote: “Laugh me off if you want, but I have spent a lot of time looking for plausible links between parents’ occupations and autism in their children, and I know them when I see them.” He also wrote: “I strongly suspect Kathleen Seidel was exposed to thimerosal occupationally.” I suppose those plausible links(“I know them when I see them”) include occupational exposure to thimerosal such as that associated with Seidel’s work as a secretary:
    https://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2008/09/dan-olmsted-suffers-by-comparison/

    I suppose the rest of the book is informed by similarly rigorous scholarship.

  2. Roger Kulp August 24, 2010 at 04:36 #

    Olmstead and his ilk are just part of the bigger antiscience picture,especially in the US.

    http://www.kentucky.com/2010/08/23/1399101/commentary-science-we-dont-need.html

    While I don’t know about Olmstead personally,it’s no coincidence that the antivaccine movement is rife with both religious fundamentalists,and Alex Jones-style right wing conspiracy mongers.

  3. Barbara August 24, 2010 at 19:15 #

    In Kanner’s original study, out of the 11 children, 2 were lost track of/died and 3 didn’t go into institutions earlyish in life, and did OK, including Don. It’s important, because most of the parents who brought their children to Kanner were trying to get them institutionalised. On a later follow-up of 96 cases, 12 (nine reported, the first 3 included, one lost track of, 2 had died including a brilliant physics student in a traffic accident, so maybe 13 or 14 (the one lost track of had an IQ of 140) we could maybe say at least 14 were doing/would have done OK. That’s a higher ‘recovery’ (they were still on the spectrum but how would Olmsted and Blaxill recognise that?) than was achieved by any of the Lovaas replication studies.

  4. stanley seigler August 24, 2010 at 20:13 #

    [barbara say]…a higher ‘recovery’ than was achieved by any of the Lovaas replication studies.

    COMMENT
    just more on lovaas:

    WWC found the Lovaas Model to have potentially positive effects for cognitive development for children with disabilities and no discernible effects for communication/language competencies, social-emotional development/behavior, and functional abilities.
    http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/reports/ece_cd/lovaas_model/

    stanley seigler

  5. stanley seigler August 25, 2010 at 05:02 #

    [Roger Kulp say]…his ilk, the antiscience picture, the antivaccine movement, religious fundamentalists, right wing conspiracy mongers.

    left out promotional science…mentioned in ms dawson’s blog and which does as much harm as the above mentioned ilk.

    thanks for the very informative article…eg, “the evolution-free universe clocks in at 7,000 years”…btw world was created on 18Mar3952 BC…

    not sure if 18mar was the first or sixth day…it was a wednesday…so He/She rested on thu or tue…not sunday.

    stanley seigler

  6. Barbara August 25, 2010 at 13:35 #

    @Stanley – yet many states in the USA support funding EIBI (Lovaas) as being ‘medically necessary’. That’s funny because Lovaas thought that autism was a myth, a ‘phantom’ he called it, which is why, I suppose, he justified getting his result in 1987(and admitted it) by slapping toddlers and yelling in their faces. Phantoms don’t feel the pain, maybe?

    BTW, Research Autism, in the UK, gives ABA/Lovaas its highest award, three ticks. It clearly hasn’t read the holey ‘evidence’. Even the WWC has done a better job than Research Autism/NAS. Larry really ought to say something about that!

  7. Chelsea August 25, 2010 at 16:27 #

    Good grief, there going to be a book! >:-O

  8. ANB August 27, 2010 at 19:46 #

    “One thing you can be sure of, LBRB will be here to catch and expose the errors.”

    We’ll need a bigger server.

  9. Kev August 27, 2010 at 21:18 #

    I did think that was a brave statement after I posted it. Screw it, we can do it!!

  10. Anne August 27, 2010 at 21:36 #

    “My guess is that Blaxill & Olmsted will reveal that Donald T. had some kind of miraculous exposure to a chelating agent or multi vitamins or some form of extreme biomed.”

    It was gold salts! Prometheus reported on this back in 2005.

  11. Kev August 27, 2010 at 21:59 #

    I knew it!

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