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Hey, where is everybody? The “CDC whistleblower” manufactroversy continues apace

vaccine(1)

Here it is, Tuesday already, and the antivaccine underground is still on full mental jacket alert over the biggest story the antivaccine movement has seen in a while. Fortunately, it’s a story that’s been largely ignored by the mainstream media, which tells me that maybe, just maybe, the mainstream media has figured out that it shouldn’t give undue credence to cranks. I’m referring, of course, to the claim that the CDC has for 13 years been covering up smoking gun evidence that the MMR vaccine when administered before 36 months causes autism in African-American males.

Ironically, as I pointed out when I first noted the emergence of this kerfuffle, the risibly incompetent “reanalysis” of the study (Destefano et al) by biochemical engineer Brian Hooker that failed to find an earlier age of first MMR vaccination in autistic children compared to neurotypical controls (hey, it was a case control study; so I have to be precise here in stating what it found) actually showed for all groups examined other than African-American males that there was no correlation between age of first MMR and autism, and, as I pointed out in both of my posts, it doesn’t even convincingly show such a relation. Given that most of the antivaccinationists glomming on to the study as “smoking gun” evidence of a CDC conspiracy are white, one can’t help but marvel how they oblivious they are to what Hooker’s “reanalysis” actually showed. None of that stopped Andrew Wakefield (and some of his supporters) from engaging in some truly despicable race baiting, comparing this CDC “coverup” to the Tuskegee syphilis experiment.

In any case, I hadn’t been planning on writing about this again right just now, having figured that two posts are enough, but the developments keep rolling in. so I can’t resist one more post. Besides, as we know from the countdown of the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, “First thou pullest the Holy Pin. Then thou must count to three. Three shall be the number of the counting and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither shalt thou count two, excepting that thou then proceedeth to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the number of the counting, be reached, then lobbest thou the Holy Hand Grenade in the direction of thine foe, who, being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it.” Unfortunately, I’m under no illusion that antivaccine nonsense shall “snuff it,” even though it is indeed naughty in the Lord’s sight, but here goes.

First up, after complaining about how long it’s taken the CDC to make a response to this kerfuffle, it finally did so yesterday afternoon:

CDC shares with parents and others great concern about the number of children with autism spectrum disorder.

CDC is committed to continuing to provide essential data on autism, search for factors that put children at risk for autism and look for possible causes. While doing so, we work to develop resources that help identify children with autism as early as possible so they can benefit from intervention services.

CDC’s study about age at first Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccination and autism, published in Pediatrics in 2004, included boys and girls from different ethnic groups, including black children. The manuscript presented the results on two sets of children:

  1. All children who were initially recruited for the study, and
  2. the subset of children who had a Georgia birth certificate.

Access to the information on the birth certificates allowed researchers to assess more complete information on race as well as other important characteristics, including possible risk factors for autism such as the child’s birth weight, mother’s age, and education. This information was not available for the children without birth certificates; hence CDC study did not present data by race on black, white, or other race children from the whole study sample. It presented the results on black and white/other race children from the group with birth certificates.

The study looked at different age groups: children vaccinated by 18 months, 24 months, and 36 months. The findings revealed that vaccination between 24 and 36 months was slightly more common among children with autism, and that association was strongest among children 3-5 years of age. The authors reported this finding was most likely a result of immunization requirements for preschool special education program attendance in children with autism.

The data CDC collected for this study continue to be available for analysis by others. CDC welcomes analysis by others that can be submitted for peer-review and publication. For more information on how to access this public-use dataset please go to the this webpage.

Additional studies and a more recent rigorous review by the Institute of Medicine have found that MMR vaccine does not increase the risk of autism.

Vaccines protect the health of children in the United States so well that most parents today have never seen first-hand the devastating consequences of diseases now stopped by vaccines.

However, our 2014 measles count is the highest number since measles was declared eliminated in 2000. We do not want to lose any opportunity to protect all of our children when we have the means to do so.

I’m actually rather torn by this statement. When I first saw it, it annoyed me. It was so milquetoast, so vague. It didn’t address the heart of the attempt at a manufactroversy, namely what on earth is going on with CDC senior scientist William Thompson, who was represented by Andrew Wakefield and Brian Hooker as having “confessed” to grave malfeasance and fraud with respect to this study using cherry picked sound bites with no context claimed to be by Thompson himself intermingled with Hooker making all sorts of claims of suppression of the “real” results. On the other hand, this antivaccine manufactroversy hasn’t hit the mainstream press much yet, other than a couple of outlets that I’ve seen. Thus far, it’s been confined to the antivaccine and quack crankosphere. So maybe it’s not a horrible idea not to mention Thompson, Hooker, or Wakefield. Certainly Hooker and Wakefield don’t deserve to be considered on the same level as someone like Thompson, even if he did somehow make the huge mistake of speaking with Hooker. Stick to the science. However, if this is all that the CDC was going to come out with, it boggles the mind that this statement wasn’t released on Friday, when the social media storm really erupted. In any case, it strikes me as too little, too late, but for what it is it does have some positives, particularly the statement that the data continue to be available for analysis and that the CDC welcomes such analyses by others that can be submitted for peer reviewed studies.

More interesting to me, and something I wanted to discuss a bit more yesterday but ran out of steam, is a letter from William Thompson to Julie Gerberding, the then head of the CDC published by Mike Adams. It’s dated February 2, 2004, and it strikes me as a bit odd. It doesn’t look like a letter, as it’s not signed and not on CDC letterhead, although it is a scanned image. On the other hand, it doesn’t look like an e-mail, either. There are no e-mail addresses, no headers, no nothing. Very odd. Right away, that makes me wonder about its authenticity. On the other hand, if you look at the text in more detail, it starts to look more authentic. Why? Because there’s nothing whatsoever there that suggests a conspiracy or coverup at all, Mike Adam’s hyperventilating otherwise. Here’s the whole text:

Dear Dr. Gerberding:

We’ve not met yet to discuss these matters, but I’m sure you’re aware of the Institute of Medicine Meeting regarding vaccines and autism that will take place on February 9th. I will be presenting the summary of our results from the Metropolitan Atlanta Autism Case-Control Study and I will have to present several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism.

It’s my understanding that you are aware of several news articles published over the last two week suggesting that Representative David Weldon is still waiting for a response from you regarding two letters he sent you regarding issues surrounding the integrity of your scientists in the National Immunization Program. I’ve repeatedly asked individuals in the NIP Office of the Directors Office why you haven’t responded directly to the issues raised in those letters, and I’m very disappointed with the answers I’ve received to date. In addition, I’ve repeatedly told indivdiuals in the NIP OD over the last several years that they’re doing a very poor job representing immunization safety issues and that we’re losing the public relations war.

On Friday afternoon, January 30th, I presented the draft slides for IOM presentation to Dr. Steve Cochi and Dr. Melinda Wharton. The first thing I stated to both of them was my sincere concern regarding presenting this work to the Institute of Medicine if you had not replied to Representative Weldon’s letters. I have attached the draft slides for your review. I have been told that you have suggested that the science speak for itself. In general, I agree with that statement, but as you know, the science also needs advocates who can get the real scientific message to the public.

In contrast to NIP’s failure to be proactive in addressing immunization safety issues, you have done an amazingly effective job addressing the press on a wide range of controversial public health issues, including SARS, Monkey Pox, and Influenza. The CDC needs your leadership here because I may very well be presenting data before a hostile crowd of parents with autistic children who have been told not to trust the CDC. I believe it is your responsibility and duty to respond in writing to Representative Weldon’s letters before the Institute of Medicine meeting and make those letters public. Otherwise, you give the appearance of agreeing with what he has been suggested in those correspondences and you’re putting one of your own scientists in harms way.This is not the time for our leadership to act politically. It is a time for our leadership to stand by their scientists and do the right thing. Please assist me in this matter and respond to Representative Weldon’s concerns in writing prior to my presentation on February 9th.

Sincerely,

William W. Thompson, PhD
Epidemiologist
Immunization Safety Branch

Going along with this letter is this interview with Adams;

First off, dammit, can’t antivaccinationists understand that a 3.4-fold increased risk is NOT a 340% increased risk. It’s a 240% increased risk. These people are numerically illiterate; no wonder they’re impressed with Hooker’s incompetent “reanalysis.” The rest of it is nothing new, nothing that I haven’t discussed before here and here (and, of course, in this very post). The only difference is more race-baiting despicableness added to Andrew Wakefield’s and Brian Hooker’s race-bating despicableness. Oh, and libeling Julie Gerberding. Adams charges that she definitely had been offered a quid pro quo for allegedly having quashed the finding that the MMR vaccine causes autism in African-American children. Oh, and totally misinterpreting Thompson’s letter.

Second, do you see a hint of a conspiracy or desire to cover up data here? I don’t, but then I’m not Mike Adams or an antivaccine conspiracy theorist flogging this latest conspiracy theory. Indeed, as I read this, all I could think of is: Is this the best Wakefield and Hooker have got? What I see in this letter is a scientist begging his boss to respond to a legislator’s rabble rousing. In fact, these letters from Rep. David Weldon, MD, to Julie Gerberding can be found online on various antivaccine websites. For instance, here is Weldon’s letter dated October 31, 2003. Here is the second letter, dated January 21, 2004.

If you read Weldon’s letters, you’ll note that they have nothing to do with Destefano et al. They’re both about the Verstraeten study, which is the study at the heart of what I called yesterday the central conspiracy theory of the antivaccine movement (at least in the US) and deconstructed in detail earlier this year. Basically, Weldon, even though he’s a physician, fell for the Simpsonwood conference conspiracy theory, promoted a year and a half later by antivaccine crank Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., hook, line, and sinker. The first letter basically regurgitates the “concerns” being promoted by the antivaccine movement at the time. The second letter turned up the heat, trying to persuade Gerberding to postpone the IOM conference until the “concern” about the Verstraeten study had been addressed. As we all know, the IOM conference did go on and the IOM report strongly stated that there was no correlation between the MMR vaccine and autism.

I can understand why Thompson, if this letter is genuine, was concerned. David Weldon was making hay with the antivaccine underground, which back in 2003 and 2004 hadn’t yet been completely revealed to be the total cranks they are, such that they could be safely ignored. Thompson sounds as though he were concerned that he was being thrown to the wolves without adequate backup. He sounds as though he were pleading for the CDC to come out more strongly on the science of vaccine safety, disagreeing that letting the science showing vaccines to be safe speak for itself is enough. He was right. Science and medicine communicators are needed, because the antivaccine movement will do everything in its power to make sure that the science doesn’t speak for itself.

As they are doing now with this manufactured controversy about a CDC “whistleblower.”

Fortunately, things don’t appear to be going quite the way that Andrew Wakefield and Brian Hooker had hoped. It’s gotten to the point where the Age of Autism’s “media editor” is crying out, “Where is the New York Times? Where is the Washington Post? Where is Fox News, CNN, CBS, and NBC? Where is the press? Anyone?” Meanwhile, we see antivaccinationists on Twitter lamenting:

And setting up a Twitter party tonight:

Far be it from me to suggest to interested Tweeple that, if they’re bored and in the mood for fun, they consider joining the party on Tuesday 8/26 from 7-10pm with the #CDCwhistleblower hashtag. To quote Andrew Wakefield’s characterization of what William Thompson allegedly said: Do what you think is best.

It’s gotten so bad that conspiracy loon John Rapaport relates:

I have it on good authority that over 200 mothers of autistic children are readying a class-action suit. They already have an attorney.

They will sue, at the very least, the authors of the 2004 DeStefano study that claimed there was no link between the MMR vaccine and autism.

CDC whistleblower William Thompson, who was one of the authors of that study—and then exposed it as a fraud—should take notice.

He can become a witness for these mothers, or if he goes into seclusion and refuses to make a clear, complete, and definitive public statement, he could wind up being sued.

CDC whistleblower Thompson has a lawyer, Rick Morgan of Morgan Verkamp LLC (LinkedIn profile here).

Like any lawyer, Morgan has one and only one objective: protect his client.

This is Morgan’s current position: His client Thompson is satisfied that, with accurate data on the 2004 study now finally available, the scientific community will be able to assess it and come to a conclusion about it…and Thompson has no plans to make a public statement or enter into a discussion on these matters.

We’ll see if this remains true.

Anyone who thinks “the scientific community” will expose the true dangers of the MMR vaccine and tie it to autism is dreaming.

If Thompson isn’t going to step before cameras and say, “Here I am, I’m William Thompson, I was part of a massive fraud, here’s what we did, here’s how we did it, here is who knew about it…” then he could end up as a defendant in a class-action suit.

Yes, it sounds as though, having failed to get Thompson to come forward and publicly accuse the CDC of a coverup, the antivaccine movement is reduced to applying pressure through legal threats of a class action suit. It’s probably an empty threat, but, as I’m reminded any time someone makes vacuous threats to sue me for libel, people can sue anybody for any reason. Even if the lawsuit is baseless, it takes time, effort, and, above all, money to defend. Even if the suit is quickly dismissed at an early stage, it’s still damned expensive to retain legal counsel even for that, and the early proceedings can easily drag one’s reputation through the mud if the plaintiff wants to do some dragging.

You know, regardless of what really happened, I’m starting to feel a bit sorry for Thompson now. If he had what he thought to be innocent correspondence and later conversations with Hooker, I bet he had no idea how fast the antivaccine movement would turn on him if their plan to manufacture a “whistleblower” controversy alleging that the CDC had engaged in a massive coverup failed to generate much coverage in the mainstream press and he didn’t give them what they wanted: A face of a senior scientist from the CDC to put on their charges. He’s basically screwed, regardless of what he actually did or what his motives for doing it were.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

170 replies on “Hey, where is everybody? The “CDC whistleblower” manufactroversy continues apace”

Okay, so this study was published 10 years ago, using data from even earlier than that….here’s where I have a problem – one that the anti-vax screwheads seem to consistently miss….

1) If there is a 240% (not 340% – as Orac posted above) increased risk for African-American boys to get autism from the MMR & the MMR uptake (universally here in the US & even abroad) is extremely high – then why aren’t we seeing significant increases in autism in that specific population over other populations?

It should be easy to extrapolate the case study information using autism numbers nationwide (roughly) to be able to get a sense of whether or not there is any veracity to what Hooker has presented, right?

Yet, I’m not seeing it. Is anyone else?

The fact that these numbers, based on Hooker’s “data” don’t actually correspond to reality (not even close – based on current autism diagnostic numbers), shows how convoluted and incorrect his findings are…..if you torture the data long enough, you may get the results you want, but like real torture, the answers you get probably aren’t going to be real.

Am I wrong people?

It is that letter that makes me realize I live on a different planet than anti-vaxxers. I read it and see nothing damning, no conspiracy, nothing being hidden. They read it and see hidden meanings everywhere.

The only thing that happens is I wonder if I am becoming a conspiracy theorist for the reasons Orac mentioned- it is not signed and not on CDC letterhead.

I, too see nothing at all odd about Thompson’s letter, and not a whiff of a hint of a scintilla of anything to suggest that he thinks the CDC was covering up a vaccine-safety issue. If anything, it’s the opposite — “I’m going to have to present this in front of a bunch of lunatics! Please tell me you’ve got my back!”

About the lack of headers: It’s easy to edit out the headers from an email. He says something about slides being “attached”, which strongly suggests it was an email.

Even assuming it was hard copy, it is not common in many organizations to use letterhead for this sort of internal correspondence.

@palindrom – if it was an email, that would explain a number of things, though I would love to see the attached slides….

Very curious that we still don’t have a direct statement from the “whistleblower.”

1)

You created a list of one item? There are those that say a list should have at least three items, and some say two is sufficient. But one?

You loose one of the points you earned for giving The Kid’s followers such a hard time.

This shouldn’t even rise to the level of annoying squall in a teapot, let alone tempest-level.

@ palindrom: “I’m going to have to present this in front of a bunch of lunatics! Please tell me you’ve got my back!”

That’s exactly how I read it, too.

This letter looks like a file copy – back in the day you signed the original, which was on the letterhead. The file copy looked like this. Until everyone started photocopying the original and putting it in the file. This could just be a file copy produced by CDC under a FOIA request.

Antivaxers’ best hope now seems to be getting one of their few allies in Congress to hold a press conference and stamp his feet about the CDC “coverup”.

Then there’d have to be some major media coverage (although probably not anywhere near what antivaxers want), and the CDC and Thompson’s co-authors would have to respond more directly and thoroughly. One obvious idea is getting independent epidemiologists and statisticians to go over the data to see if Hooker’s claims have any justification. And if they don’t want to do this, make that data available to any party on request to do a reanalysis.

Simply saying that they stand behind the study isn’t going to be enough to quell the conspiracy-shouters.

How bizarre (but not unexpected) that Thompson is now facing not-so-subtle threats from at least one presumed antivax ally. Given the history of venomous behavior by antivaxers toward supposed whistleblowers (listen to the applause in the video provided by Brian Deer when Wakefield discusses exposing the person who allegedly “confessed” to him), it’s a wonder that they expect anyone to willingly come forward to support their cause.

@Anne – good point. “I’m going to present this to a bunch of people who don’t understand statistics & will attempt to find any little thing to latch on to,” sounds about right based on the tone.

He really does seem more concerned that the CDC isn’t taking a harder line against anti-vaxers, not exactly someone who seems to be in their court.

RT, the Kremlin-owned “news” network, aired “The Greater Good” about four days ago. Apart from its Putin apologism, the network is known for giving airtime to lunatic conspiracy theories, including anti-vaxxerism. Mike Adams, Jon Rappaport, Leslie Manookian, and others have been guests. This is the kind of crap they put out there as “mainstream” news: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2e6Q6n1ZHuw

At least one of RT’s “anchors,” Abby Martin, is a fluoride-phobe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgKXLae8v9U

If I had money to bet, it’d be that the anti-vaxxers will be approached by RT. They would sink so low as to resort to using a Russian propaganda station.

@Dangerous Bacon

One obvious idea is getting independent epidemiologists and statisticians to go over the data to see if Hooker’s claims have any justification.

I’m getting tired of everyone else having to pay to correct the bad science and delusional claims of anti-vaxxers. Especially when they’ll just ignore the corrected result anyway.

Actually, I have an idea. How about the CDC and Hooker/Wakefield both put the money to pay for the study into escrow. If Hooker’s analysis is validated, the CDC pays. If it isn’t, Hooker and Wakefield pay. Seems fairer than anti-vaxxers being able to waste public money on demand every time they come up with another implausible theory.

Mikey seems to hesitate much too frequently whilst reciting his ‘inside information’ about what ‘zactly went on within the CDC and as he confabulates Dr G’s supposed career moves.
I wonder why that is?

Also he looks somewhat pale for a fellow who supposedly works outside daily on his Austin ranch, clearig brush and such.
Must be too much lab time.

Interestingly enough, Handley both writes a post about the CDC turncoat @ AoA and comments @ Jake’s saying that the youngster has been “childish” and divisive within their community. One of the reasons he’s stayed away for the past year and a half, he says.

I imagine that Thompson NOT speaking up publicly fuels the anti-vax fantasy machine which should be amped up past 11 by now:
expect much hilarity to ensue.

@Anne: I realize that government sometimes lags the rest of the world, but by 2004 both photocopiers and e-mail were commonplace. That the slides were “attached”, rather than “enclosed”, indicates that this was an e-mail.

I also agree with palindrom’s reading of the letter. The letter makes several mentions of inquiries by then-Rep. David Weldon. According to Wikipedia, Weldon was a Republican congressman from Florida (1994-2008) and a physician (he lives in Indiatlantic, in east central Florida, where he may or may not be practicing medicine). Wikipedia doesn’t say anything about his views on vaccination (pro or contra), but he did involve himself in the Terri Schiavo brouhaha, in a way which tells me all I need to know about his ability as a physician. That of course came after this letter, but Thompson sounds like he was nervous about having to deal with Weldon.

Lawrence @ 5: Probably Thompson is talking to lawyers right now, who have told him to not talk to the press or the public.

Re. conspiracy loon John Rapaport: ‘If Thompson isn’t going to step before cameras and say, “Here I am, I’m William Thompson, I was part of a massive fraud, here’s what we did, here’s how we did it, here is who knew about it…” then he could end up as a defendant in a class-action suit. ‘

In other words, ‘If Thompson doesn’t say what we want him to say, we’re going to sue him.’ Nice of them to say so. Someone should try to make sure Thompson sees that statement: chances are it won’t scare him but instead it will piss him off right good.

What I think happened:

Thompson pleaded with his boss for backup in dealing with ‘thinking mums’ and the like, and received no support or guidance. Then when the loons rang him up he tried to set them straight. Lot of good that did, as we now see. In all probability he is now bloody pissed and looking forward to the day he can have his say in public.

We can’t quite say the race-baiting is over yet, these kinds of memes have an incubation period during which time they are still contagious. So it’s important to reach out to the black community, not only via their doctors, but via their churches and other important community groups.

I detect a certain hysteria coming from the FB pages of the anti-vax contingent. Here’s a gem from LJ Goes last night:

“YYYYYYYYYYYYYYESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!! HOLD TIGHT angry mamas and papas! HOOOOOOOOOOOOLD TIGHT! We are on the cusp. Do not awfulize. Do not freak. Do not thirst for blood (I know it’s tough when you look into the faces of your precious suffering bebes). But….REALLY REALLY! GOOD GOOD GOOD STUFF COMING. Sit tight. Be ready. CHANGE TRUTH VINDICATION! HOLD ON. Pray, fast meditate for strength and patience. Love on your kiddos extra. Cultivate a forgiving heart and foster an attitude of acceptance. I KNOW what I sound like. Just do it. REALLY. REALLY.”
__
And later in the thread, lots of the anti-vax illuminary chime in:
__
“Ashli Nicole: On my knees. Heavenly Father, help us save our children, prevent harm and heal our babies.
2 hours ago · Like · 6

Colleen Mitchell: I want blood!
about an hour ago · Like · 1

Kristal Davenport Shaff: Yes… like a rough time estimate? Hours? Days?
about an hour ago · Like · 1

Patricia Neuenschwander: I so hope for some good SOON!!!!!!
about an hour ago · Like

Gabrielle Darvassy: Yes
about an hour ago · Like

Lisa Joyce Goes: No blood. NO BLOOD. Nope. We are above that. Let it sink in. We are pulling together affecting change. The LOVE we have for our children is the powerful conduit. I want to give estimates, but, as is the case with all of these issues…many many people have to fall in line, in order and agree to make sacrifices for each other so our children’s truth can be exposed. Please be patient. I realize what I am asking. Make a punching bag with my face on it and punch away. PRAY hard, do not stop believing and when you are feeling like you are going to go off the deep end go support your friend who is worse off than you. I KNOW. I KNOW. Please. trying so hard so many no interest other than the truth. Please believe
about an hour ago · Like · 14

Lisa Joyce Goes: Becky Howell-Adams you are your family are on my heart every night. For you I believe this will happen. I do.
about an hour ago · Like · 1

Kristal Davenport Shaff: Not even a little blood? **blinks innocently**
about an hour ago · Like · 7

Jade Pryce Better yet… A punching bag with prOffits face on it.
about an hour ago · Like · 4

Kay Rohrbaugh Baldwin: Lord Have Mercy…..I need a drink…..a great Big Straight Bourbon !!!!!
about an hour ago · Like · 2

Jacqueline Hannaford Murphy: Just give them enough of their own rope….and sit tight…they will take care of the rest.
about an hour ago · Like · 4

Mike Tara McMillan: cant wait to kick butt
about an hour ago · Like

Carol Fruscella: Any news… just asking?
about an hour ago · Like

Timothy Welsh: It is so tough waiting two decades – @TannersDad
about an hour ago · Like · 4

Kathy Blanco: truth will always surface…
about an hour ago · Like · 2”

Altho’ I sort of knew the figures in advance- because I’ve seen them often enough- I did a quick search for estimated prevalence of autism by race at the CDC-
e.g. Surveillance Summaries 61 ( SS03)/ March 2012

combined estimated prevalence across 14 sites
non-hispanic white 12 per 1000
non-hispanic black 10 per 1000
hispanic 7.9 per 1000
by site figures are available as well

Hasn’t race been tracked already? A huge disparity such as that being broadcast from the rooftops by Hooker might conceivable have shown up by now.

Please. trying so hard so many no interest other than the truth. Please believe

That’s more than a bit sad. The truth? Hah!

Simply saying that they stand behind the study isn’t going to be enough to quell the conspiracy-shouters.

Would anything? Anything short of admission that “yes, we ate baby autistic Jesus for teh evulz” will probably be taken as further coverup by the true believers.

(It’s neat, isn’t? If you admit, you prove the CTs right, if you deny, you’re trying to maintain the masquerade, which also proves the CTs right. Presence and absence of evidence are both proof.)

Why won’t the mainstream media pick this up? Well let’s see. The anti-vaxxers have an inflammatory, demonstrably false video done by one of the greatest science frauds, a hack scientist rife with conflicts of interest and zero qualifications in epidemiology and biostatistics producing a demonstrably false study which requires competence in biostatistics and epidemiology, not to mention basic writing skills and a so-called whistleblower who is only heard to utter how ashamed he is. He could have easily been referring to double-dipping the queso at the last company xmas party for chrisssakes. And lastly, an email sent by the so-called whistleblower which is essentially begging Gerberding to stop being a politician and start defending her scientists and effectively communicating their work.

Nope, can’t see why no legitimate media outlet will touch this one.

@ Broken Link, “awfulize” really?! Goes sounds really well put together…cha.

Lurking on another vaccine forum and saw this.

“More CDC lies exposed. “I called the Georgia office of vital records and confirmed that they do not include, nor do they even collect, information like maternal education, and gestation age. I was told that if researchers wanted that information they would have to go to the hospital where the child was born.” ~Ginger Taylor

I KNOW what I sound like.

Ms. Goes doesn’t seem to realize just how appropriate that statement is. She sounds like someone who is arguing with herself, and losing. (And that’s the charitable version.)

Snopes.com, which does a great job debunking various myths and internet stories, has linked back here relating to this story….good to see more reality-based reporting.

@ Annie, Ginger Taylor is not exactly what you’d call an accurate reporter of anything. The DeStefano study states:

For all case and control children, we obtained demographic information, including date of birth, gender, race, and birth state, from the birth certificate or registration form that is kept in each child’s permanent school record. We matched 355 (56%) case and 1020 (56%) control children to Georgia state birth certificate records, which allowed us to obtain additional information, such as each child’s birth weight and gestational age and the mother’s parity, age, race, and education.

Emphasis mine. The hospitals have detailed worksheets that are filled out and kept on file that contain all of that information and more. So guess what “additional information” means and where the PIs got it? Ginger Taylor is just another too incompetent and/or too unethical to read the freakin study and do some fact-finding.

Out of curiosity, does anyone know whether Thompson did in fact wind up presenting at the IOM meeting in question?

I was trying to find the slides that could have been attached to the letter, and was able to find all the presentation slides given on that day on the IOM site (http://www.iom.edu/Activities/PublicHealth/ImmunizationSafety/2004-FEB-09.aspx — under “Other Meeting Resources”), but I see nothing there from Thompson and nothing regarding the DeStefano study from any other CDC scientist.

Did Thompson’s presentation get pulled from the agenda or did he refuse to present because of Weldon? (I also don’t see an agenda posted for this meeting the way it’s posted for the previous meetings so I can’t even tell if it’s a matter of just missing docs or if it was removed from the agenda altogether). From his letter (if it’s actually his), Thompson did seem to believe that there were “several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism”. Would be interesting to see the slides….

Out of curiosity, does anyone know whether Thompson did in fact wind up presenting at the IOM meeting in question?

I was trying to find the slides that could have been attached to the letter, and was able to find all the presentation slides given on that day on the IOM site (http://www.iom.edu/Activities/PublicHealth/ImmunizationSafety/2004-FEB-09.aspx — under “Other Meeting Resources”), but I see nothing there from Thompson and nothing regarding the DeStefano study from any other CDC scientist.

Did Thompson’s presentation get pulled from the agenda or did he refuse to present because of Weldon? (I also don’t see an agenda posted for this meeting the way it’s posted for the previous meetings so I can’t even tell if it’s a matter of just missing docs or if it was removed from the agenda altogether). From his letter (if it’s actually his), Thompson did seem to believe that there were “several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism”. Would be interesting to see the slides….

@Lawrence

Yeah, sounds like it. It seems to be the newest conspiracy making the rounds now…

I think this community is overlooking the significance of some of William Thompson’s comments (assuming he actually made them), and thus understating the gravity of this situation. Obviously the antivaxxers are poor scientists, by and large. But my understanding is that Thompson has (had?) a good reputation. While most of the letter to Gerberding is unexceptional, the second sentence certainly calls for some amplification: “I will be presenting the summary of our results from the Metropolitan Atlanta Autism Case-Control Study and I will have to present several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism.” Now it is entirely possible that the “problematic results” had an innocent explanation (perhaps he’s referring to the increased rate of vaccinations in the 3-5 year old case group), but it did seem to be a concern to him at the time he wrote the letter.

More troubling, if the audio clips in the Wakefield video are authentic and in context, Thompson seems to be supporting the view that something untoward was done in the Destefano study. This community is committed to being objective and fact-based. If a senior CDC scientist is really concerned that there were improprieties in the study, that’s a very important fact for the science-based community to understand. Most of these blog posts appear to be ignoring the possibility that Thompson really did speak to Hooker and raise issues about the study.

A number of people have already made the point that even if the Destafano study is flawed, its conclusions are supported by numerous others. But Thompson’s silence is extremely troubling–if his views are being misrepresented, he would have every incentive and plenty of opportunity to correct the record. If it is correct that Fred Morgan is Thompson’s lawyer, it should be noted that his core practice is pharma whistleblower cases. If Morgan is really saying that Thompson will have no public comment and that the scientific community will evaluate the data, that is a bizarrely weak response to the current controversy, leading one to think that Thompson really did speak to Hooker.

Again, even if there were problems with the Destafano study, it doesn’t mean vaccines cause autism–the evidence is extremely strong that they don’t. But if Thompson is really a whistleblower, it seems to me like this story could be of lasting significance.

“I called the Georgia office of vital records and confirmed that they do not include, nor do they even collect, information like maternal education, and gestation age. I was told that if researchers wanted that information they would have to go to the hospital where the child was born”

These stats are included in the standardized birth certificates.

And, should she be correct and one has to go to the hospital, that would make it even harder for the researchers to include data from those born outside the area. The researchers would have had to go to dozens if not hundreds of hospitals around the country to get the information. Then they’d have to get information on control kids from the same hospitals.

So, if she wants to say, “here’s why they limited themselves to Atlanta”, that’s fine. Doesn’t really help their “they are disenfranchising African Americans”

Ginger Taylor is the media representative for groups promoting vaccines causing autism. A position that is paid during times they have the money. She made that clear too, didn’t she? Given how important disclosing conflicts of interest are to her.

if the audio clips in the Wakefield video are authentic and in context.

Knowing the anti-vaxxers, and particularly Wakefiled, like we do, I can confidently say that’s a gargantuan “if”.

I think this community is overlooking the significance of some of William Thompson’s comments (assuming he actually made them), and thus understating the gravity of this situation.

Fred, no one is overlooking Dr. Thompson’s comments. But what are they exactly? All we have are a couple of highly-edited sound bites, not even in context of the full conversation. He was recorded obviously, why not play the conversations in full? So, prudence is warranted and until more information from accurate sources are rendered don’t you think?

“I will be presenting the summary of our results from the Metropolitan Atlanta Autism Case-Control Study and I will have to present several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism.” Now it is entirely possible that the “problematic results” had an innocent explanation (perhaps he’s referring to the increased rate of vaccinations in the 3-5 year old case group), but it did seem to be a concern to him at the time he wrote the letter.

Now I see this in a different light. He is complaining that he is presenting to “autism mothers” who have a distrust of the CDC and he is going to go in there to present data that there were no differences between cases and controls of MMR-vaccinated children hence the “problematic results”. They weren’t what the audience were there to hear. But again, Gerberding and Thompson are really the only ones who can fully clarify that.

If a senior CDC scientist is really concerned that there were improprieties in the study, that’s a very important fact for the science-based community to understand. Most of these blog posts appear to be ignoring the possibility that Thompson really did speak to Hooker and raise issues about the study.

Sure it’s possible, that’s not ignored at all. In fact we have stated that we don’t doubt that Dr. Thompson spoke with Hooker and Wakefield, we just don’t know about what and their atrocious video doesn’t clarify. Ask yourself why such a high-level scientist from the CDC would go to charlatans like Hooker and Wakefield when there are numerous legitimate journalists who would have protected him and reported his story if there was one?

But if Thompson is really a whistleblower, it seems to me like this story could be of lasting significance.

I guess we shall see and the responsible thing to do is to wait for adequate information to roll in. To paraphrase Dorit Reiss on the matter, so far this is the biggest non-scandal.

That’s the documentation they have? That’s it? There has to be more. Something from Thompson that is actually on topic. I could easily see him recording his objection to the general consensus to go ahead with the paper as written.

That said–perhaps mainstream media outlets did reach out on this story. They were then shown this document as a smoking gun and given the “opportunity” to interview known fraud (yes, that’s my opinion too) Andrew Wakefield. Maybe they took the “opportunity” and heard him rant and rave about Tuskegee.

Perhaps Mr. Wakefield should be happy that no one has taken up his story.

“Ask yourself why such a high-level scientist from the CDC would go to charlatans like Hooker and Wakefield when there are numerous legitimate journalists who would have protected him and reported his story if there was one?”

It’s not like either of these gentleman is unknown. Nor difficult to google.

You know, another thought has occurred to me. In the Wakefield video, we get snippets of what is presumably Thompson’s voice, I guess during a phone call with Hooker. Another thing that we do not know about that is whether or not Hooker got Thompson’s consent to record the conversation.

Now, where everybody was during that phone call makes a big difference. Thompson was probably in Georgia, while Hooker was most likely in California. Georgia is a “one-party consent” law state, meaning that only one party to the conversation has to give permission, so other people involved don’t need to be told that their conversation is being recorded. California, however, is a “two-party consent” law state, meaning that all parties must give permission to the recording.

So, did Hooker get Thompson’s permission to record the call?

I’ve seen people other than Ginger Taylor–this includes Brian Hooker–say that birth certificates don’t have the data as stated in the paper.

Mr. Hooker is showing his ignorance. A bad thing given the extraordinary claims he makes.

Here’s a document showing the procedure for someone to obtain a birth certificate after a home birth. One is supposed to include parental education, age, etc.. And after submitting the packet to the county, the county forwards information to the state. If, somehow, the stats pages are not part of what is required to be forwarded to the state, either the county or the state has these records.

http://www.celebratedouglascounty.com/view/global/viewdownload/&docid=3577&file=/Home_Birth_Package.pdf

But, in many ways, this is just a smoke screen. What did Mr. Hooker say?

Despite your assertions and the assertions of Destefano, Birth Certificates do not contain the information on the covariates you cite: birth weight, maternal age, maternal education, parity, etc. If you had read my paper, you would see that I repeated the analyses of the CDC and obtained the same results that they obtained in both what was published originally and what was withheld. Also, the birth certificate restriction was NOT applied to other race categories outside of African Americans.

They most certainly do collect that data. Wherever it ends up (I’m still going with the state), I think the CDC can find it.

As to the “it wasn’t applied to other races”. Why, then, are there 333 white autistic kids in the “total sample” and 199 in the “birth certificate sample”?

Hooker talks like someone who hasn’t read the paper. I.e. like Ginger Taylor.

“So, did Hooker get Thompson’s permission to record the call?”

I’d like to see proof of that as well. Especially given California’s very strict law on the subject.

Also, did Wakefield get permission to out Thompson? Wakefield wrote somewhere that he got a “do what you think is best” or some such from Thompson. In what context? In “On advice of my attorney I can no longer speak with you. Do what you think is best”?

Or, how about, “Well, since you basically told them everything they needed to hear to figure out it was me, do what you think is best”.

Seriously, Wakefield was basically begging us to figure out it was Thompson. I considered calling Thompson myself before the outing.

Why did Thompson stay anonymous for *months* and then in a couple of days after posting his video, Wakefield just changes the video? Like, “Oh, it’s no big deal”.

And–why record the video with Thompson’s name and then censor it? Really, if you are taking live video in the field, that’s one thing. But both Wakefield and Hooker could have scripted this without naming Thompson.

This suggests to me that it was always Wakefield’s intent to out Thompson.

Another email from Thompson (supposedly) released on this subject — http://www.naturalnews.com/images/CDC-DOJ-Investigation-MMR-Vaccine-Autism-NN-Watermark.jpg
The article that accompanies it isn’t particularly useful, but if this is an authentic document, it does point to the “problematic” results issue as being real, at least in Thompson’s mind (“…sensitive results we have been struggling with…”). According to this, Thompson was concerned enough at that point in time to retain his own lawyer.

Zobor,
Re: the meeting Thompson was referring to in the leaked letter or email. It seems clear to me that Orac is right in thinking that Thompson was going to speak about the first version of the Verstraeten retrospective paper looking at thimerosal exposure in vaccines and neurodevelopmental problems. As I recall one single sub-group, one single dose of thimerosal as I recall (no time to go and check), showed increased autism, with other sub-groups showing lower rates being ignored, of course. The antivaxxers seized upon this single sub-group, and are still unconvinced by the final later versions of the paper that more thoroughly corrected for confounders and found no link.

I see one of the Geiers was speaking at that meeting, as well as someone called Jeff Bradstreet MD, presenting a paper titled, Biological Evidence of Significant Vaccine Related Side-effects Resulting in Neurodevelopmental
Disorders”.

Thompson was walking into a den of antixvax loons. No wonder he was looking for support from Gerberding!

Zobor,
Re: the meeting Thompson was referring to in the leaked letter or email. It seems clear to me that Orac is right in thinking that Thompson was going to speak about the first version of the Verstraeten retrospective paper looking at thimerosal exposure in vaccines and neurodevelopmental problems. As I recall one single sub-group, one single dose of thimerosal as I recall (no time to go and check), showed increased autism, with other sub-groups showing lower rates being ignored, of course. The antivaxxers seized upon this single sub-group, and are still unconvinced by the final later versions of the paper that more thoroughly corrected for confounders and found no link.

I see one of the Geiers was speaking at that meeting, as well as someone called Jeff Bradstreet MD, presenting a paper titled, Biological Evidence of Significant Vaccine Related Side-effects Resulting in Neurodevelopmental
Disorders”.

Thompson was walking into a den of antixvax loons. No wonder he was looking for support from Gerberding!

Ginger Taylor is just another too incompetent and/or too unethical to read the freakin study and do some fact-finding.

You mean like this? Georgia was definitely using the 2003 revision by 2012, so “I called the Georgia office of vital records and confirmed that they do not include, nor do they even collect, information like maternal education, and gestation age” seems to involve a novel sense of the word “confirm.”

All this was in the 1989 revision, as well. I’m not going to bother going back further just now.

The article that accompanies it isn’t particularly useful, but if this is an authentic document, it does point to the “problematic” results issue as being real, at least in Thompson’s mind

He was referring to Verstraeten (2003). I wonder if his telephone comments were about the same study. It would make sense.

@Krebiozen,
Thompson mentions he would be presenting on the MMR specifically, which never contained thimerosal: “I will have to present several problematic results relating to statistical associations between the receipt of MMR vaccine and autism.”

It’s entirely possible MMR/Autism results he was planning to present were preliminary and there were explanations for the problematic results. It’s also possible that he was being overly cautious in viewing the results as being problematic given the audience he was about to face. Nevertheless, it does seem that an MMR/Autism presentation was supposed to be given — so either the email/letter isn’t right, or the presentation docs are missing, or something changed after that email/letter was sent.

Despite your assertions and the assertions of Destefano, Birth Certificates do not contain the information on the covariates you cite: birth weight, maternal age, maternal education, parity, etc.

Um, mine does.

We matched 355 (56%) case and 1020 (56%) control children to Georgia state birth certificate records, which allowed us to obtain additional information, such as each child’s birth weight and gestational age and the mother’s parity, age, race, and education.

I can think of a good reason why the state of Georgia would not give out that information to just anybody: high potential for HIPAA violations. There will be many instances where that information, together with the date of birth, would uniquely identify somebody in the study, which is a major no-no. You should have to demonstrate a good reason, such as a study with protocols approved by your IRB, to have access to that data.

Narad, above, indicates that this information was collected in the 1989 version of Georgia’s birth certificate, which would be the relevant version for the kids in this study.

According to this, Thompson was concerned enough at that point in time to retain his own lawyer.

And that he’s something of a ding-a-ling: He was “more” (and “further”) concerned that a CDC lawyer would be telling the CDC how to comply with a DOJ document request?

@Krebiozen – once again the Verstraten (2003) study could not have been related to that second email because the Metropolitan Atlanta Developmental Disabilities Surveillance Program (MADDSP) MMR/Autism study is referred to explicitly in that email. No mention of thimerosal.

Who knows if these emails are authentic, but if they are — we can’t discount them without considering that Thompson may have had serious enough concerns at that point to want to remove his name from the study altogether.

Narad, above, indicates that this information was collected in the 1989 version of Georgia’s birth certificate, which would be the relevant version for the kids in this study.

Don’t leap to that conclusion; the states don’t always adopt the latest revision immediately. In any event, there were children born in 1986–1988 in the sample as well.

I don’t know where they are going with the birth certificate argument–other than to try to counter the damage done when Mr. Hooker showed he doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

So how did the conversations between Hooker and Thompson go down?

Hey Brian. You should know that we made up all that stuff in birth certificates. They don’t have that data. And, well, we only got birth certificates from whites. Because, well, if we are going to make up data, let’s only make it up for whites. Got that? So, ignore all that for now. It’s totally minor. Instead, here’s how to do an analysis that will give a high relative risk in African American boys. Go with that. Don’t bring up the made up birth data. Save that for comments on AoA. ”

Make sense to anyone?

And, like, there’s only 900 or so papers on pubmed that specifically use the term “birth certificate” in the abstract and/or title?

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=%22birth+certificate%22

Let’s get those papers recalled. Like this one
Race/ethnicity, educational attainment, and pregnancy complications in New York City women with pre-existing diabetes.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24354778

They can’t get educational attainment. Birth certificate data don’t have that. It’s MASSIVE fraud! All these researchers claiming to have birth certificate data are LYING.

Here’s another thing about how to *not* get main stream media attention.

Don’t dribble the news out. Don’t say, “here’s our big news. We have a whistleblower who wants to remain anonymous”. Then a few days later, “Oh, here’s his name”. Then “and here’s a boring document about him”. Then a day later, “and here’s another. Not as boring. Check back tomorrow”.

Who wants to work with that story?

Just got this in my inbox….STAHP

Twitter Party Guide
#CDCwhistleblower
Tonight, from 7-10 p.m. EST, we are gathering for a twitter party to push #CDCwhistleblower into “trending” status in response to the revelations by a senior CDC insider of a systematic cover-up of evidence that the MMR vaccine does indeed cause autism. We will share a variety of links, photos, memes, etc. over the course of the three hours. These will be uniform and follow “tweeting points”, which are outlined below. First, though…we need some ground rules:
Ground Rules –
Use #CDCwhistleblower ONLY. In order to ensure the most saturation, we need to focus on this hashtag ONLY. And it must look just like that – hashtag, CDC in all caps, whistleblower in all lower case.
Retweeting, favoriting, and replying are key. Do not repeat a statement once you’ve used it; instead, retweet, favorite and reply to others’ tweets. When replying, put a period in front of the @…ex/ when replying to @ThinkerMichelle’s tweet, use [email protected] in order to reach all of ThinkerMichelle’s followers and not just the people in the tweet thread.
Do not use profanity, defamatory language, or make lewd comments.
DO NOT engage with nay-sayers, pro-vax people or pharma trolls. I CANNOT EMPHASIZE THIS ENOUGH…DO NOT ARGUE. If you feel the need to reply to them, simply repeat #CDCwhistleblower with no other wording. DO NOT ARGUE.
Do not refer to lawsuits, personal or class action. That talk is way too premature.
Do not express negativity toward William Thompson. Just don’t.
Do not exceed 116 original tweets in an hour or your account will be suspended. Do not go to individual users’ profiles and tweet them directly.
“Tweeting Points” COPY AND PASTE
#CDCwhistleblower vaccine-autism link is Tuskegee revisited. “REAL STORY OF REAL FRAUD” http://tinyurl.com/oqrhezc
#CDCwhistleblower says former boss & current Merck head Gerberding complicit in cover-up http://tinyurl.com/nubcyef
#CDCwhistleblower in letter to Gerberding: “problematic” findings linking MMR timing to autism http://tinyurl.com/keb8ymu
Fraud study cited in 344 subsequent papers – all relying on lies & house of cards should fall #CDCwhistleblower http://tinyurl.com/jvo93z2
#CDCwhistleblower helps researcher with real data, showing 3-fold higher risk of autism in African-American boys who get MMR http://tinyurl.com/omujczd
Tell @AmerAcadPeds to retract fraud study #CDCwhistleblower http://tinyurl.com/nh9fsnn
@CDCgov responds to #CDCwhistleblower claims by blaming parents for following CDC vax schedule, doesn’t deny fraud http://tinyurl.com/mwrv3cb
@CNN investigate #CDCwhistleblower story & end media blackout. 150K hits for ireport http://tinyurl.com/n53kzbq
@CNN taking down ireports over & over in media blackout of #CDCwhistleblower story http://tinyurl.com/k74jy5z
What happens when #CDCwhistleblower reveals federal agency fraud of taxpayer funded study…nothing http://tinyurl.com/plxj252
@CNN complicit in media cover-up of #CDCwhistleblower story http://tinyurl.com/pc2766g
@RobSchneider stands by parents & facts asking @JerryBrownGov to address #CDCwhistleblower revelations http://tinyurl.com/nrbe75j
Now we want investigations for perjury & fraud. now we want apologies for negligence & harm #CDCwhistleblower http://tinyurl.com/ld7bmo8
#CDCwhistleblower Send CDC whistleblower an email message asking him to come forward publicly: http://bit.ly/1nqEsG3
@thinkingmomsrev #CDCwhistleblower fraud claims prove MOMS WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG http://tinyurl.com/mp6r94d
At this point, I encourage people to continue sharing their stories of vaccine injury, whether MMR-related or not. Please include photos if you are comfortable and tag @RobSchneider, asking him to Pls RT (please retweet).
Please share with friends and family and share of social networks such as Facebook.

OK, here we go. The previous revision was in 1978. Guess what? Yup (PDF).

It’s necessary to read the last section of Freedman et al. (which isn’t adequately detailed for this purpose) regarding how states had implemented the 1978 version. There’s likely paydirt in reference 4, Floyd et al., but unless there’s an MAG member in the house to peruse their archives, somebody would have to dig it up.

P.S. I was wrong about my birth certificate including parity; I was mixed up about the term.

@sadasd,

comes across as “be a good thinker and do exactly as we tell you”

No irony there.

There’s a limited but better breakdown of state reporting as of August 1982 in Exhibit 1b here (PDF).

Education was included by 49 reporting areas, birth weight by all 52, and parity by all 52.

BTW, do DeStefano et al. even use gestational age? It’s not mentioned the 2004 IOM slides – the birth-certificate data cited are maternal age and education, birth weight, multiplicity, and parity.

Tonight, from 7-10 p.m. [sic] EST [sic], we are gathering for a twitter party to push #CDCwhistleblower into “trending” status

Oh, how humiliating.

As to the “it wasn’t applied to other races”. Why, then, are there 333 white autistic kids in the “total sample” and 199 in the “birth certificate sample”?

Jesus, he’s melting into a puddle of goo.

So what exactly will be accomplished if they reach trend status?

It will be all over the television news?
The Times** will report on it?
World leaders will stop in their tracks and forget what’s happening in the Middle East to take this up?
The Market*** will drop hundreds of points immediately?

What’s wrong with these people?

** whichever Times you like
*** whichever market is currently open

Narad,

from DeStefano et al.:

We matched 355 (56%) case and 1020 (56%) control children to Georgia state birth certificate records, which allowed us to obtain additional information, such as each child’s birth weight and gestational age and the mother’s parity, age, race, and education.

@Matt

Ginger Taylor is the media representative for groups promoting vaccines causing autism. A position that is paid during times they have the money.

I don’t imagine that she’s ever explained what’s going on with the autismpolicy-dot-org “IU Webmaster redirect” to a domain that she doesn’t own.

which will be briefly available

That’s some seriously bollixed PDF. Acrobat Pro won’t even OCR it to make a searchable version.

Narad – I’m able to search it fine with the free Acrobat Reader.

I lied – the first word I tried was vaccination, which found a few entries. But only at the beginning and end – the middle seems to be unselectable and unsearchable.

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