Respectful Insolence

Remember Elyse? She’s one of the Skepchicks, and a couple of weeks ago she did a most excellent skeptical thing. She organized a campaign to complain to the theaters that had, according to the anti-vaccine propaganda group SafeMinds and the anti-vaccine propaganda blog Age of Autism, accepted the advertisements, which SafeMinds were “framing” to be public service announcements. Her campaign met with considerable success. AMC Theaters, in particular, put the kibosh on the anti-vaccine “PSA.” This is not the only time Elyse has been a thorn in the side of the anti-vaccine movement. Back in May, she organized a counter protest against an anti-vaccine rally in Grant Park in Chicago.

After the successful campaign to keep SafeMinds’ emotionally manipulative and deceptive PSA out of theaters, I noted that the anti-vaccine groups would be at the very least keeping an eye on her and at the very most coming after her. Today, Kim Wombles informs me that the antivaxers are showing signs of starting to go after her in a typical smear campaign that they are so good at. It’s begun with posting Elyse’s picture from her Facebook profile, along with this comment:

This is the woman who fought to pull the SafeMinds PSA’s from the theatres. It’s her FB profile page photo. She is anti-choice and wants to tell you that mercury is safe and that Thimeosal is good – according to her blog. She trolls AofA regularly. As do all the pro-vaccine-injury bloggers.

Well, actually, I do admit that I peruse AoA fairly regularly, although I’ve only ever tried to comment there a handful of times in its three year existence. The moderation censorship is too complete. The reason I peruse it, of course, is because the crazy is so strong there that it provides copious blogging material about the fallacies and nastiness of Generation Rescue and the anti-vaccine movement. In any case, comments on the AoA Facebook page are typical AoA crazy.

For instance, Janette Howard says:

I pray her baby is not screaming from brain damage.

Nice.

Karen Harker says:

people like this deserve to know what its like to have a child with autism!!! I would never wish autism on anyone but she needs to spend a few hours with my son to see what we all go through before she is all pro vaccine!!! GET A FREAKING CLUE!!!!

If vaccines had anything to do with autism (they don’t), Karen might have a point. Even if vaccines did cause autism, her comment would still strike me as vindictive and self-pitying more than anything else. She sounds as though she views autism as a punishment from on high and would like to inflict that punishment on the children of those whom she views as being against her anti-vaccine views in order to get at the parent. In any case, how does she know that Elyse doesn’t have an idea what autism is like? Whether or not Elyse “knows what it’s like” to have a chlld with autism is irrelevant to the question of whether vaccines cause autism anyway.

There’s more (a lot more), but I’ll finish with this one. As pointed out by Kim Wombles, an Age of Autism editor (most likely Kim Stagliano) says:

Karen, I never go there – I never want to punish a parent, however I might disagree with them – by smiting their child. I can’t do it. I do agree that the lack of empathy and ability to see the larger picture is stunning and almost autistic itself. I wouldn’t trust my girls in her care for 5 seconds. I’d leave them with wolves first. :) K

That’s right. Being against Karen and Kim’s anti-vaccine views means (to them) that automatically Elyse has no empathy, can’t see the big picture, and must be a bad mother, so bad that Kim would rather leave her children with wolves than with Elyse. Nice. Stay classy, Kim. Stay classy.

Of course, to me the fact that Elyse realizes that vaccines don’t cause autism means that she “sees the big picture” far better than Kim does. Be that as it may, in actuality, my only surprise here is that Stagliano and her cronies at AoA took so long. Their modus operandi has always been, when confronted with criticism or resistance to their anti-vaccine message, to attack the messenger, something they are quite accomplished at. I would not be the least bit surprised if tomorrow there is a post on AoA about this topic, with perhaps Kim Stagliano piously pontificating in a grating “holier than thou” attitude about how Elyse just doesn’t understand and is a horrible mother. If Jake Crosby does the post, there’ll be all sorts of “research” about Elyse designed to demonstrate that she must be a shill for big pharma, because, let’s face it, that’s all he’s got when it comes to discussing vaccines and autism.

Whatever happens, I fear that the nastiness is not over. AoA is likely try to drive Elyse from the field by smears, innuendo, and personal attacks, as it does with virtually anyone who criticizes them and stands up for vaccine science.

Comments

  1. #1 Denice Walter
    December 5, 2010

    Elyse is slimed again in today’s post @ AoA in the comments ( They really hop to it, don’t they?) And I suspect that that will continue, in a familiarly clumsy and sick-making fashion. Unfortunately, I don’t know whether to file the post’s contents under “funny” or “disturbing”: it appears that ” Fox and Friends” aired the so-called “PSA” and “millions” of viewers were thereby “enlightened”. FOX and information-debased conspiracy-mongering, who would have thought?

  2. #2 Agashem
    December 5, 2010

    I wonder if they ever read the bible? Smiting children seemed to be quite the rage in ancient Egypt and was good enough for god……

  3. #3 ERV
    December 5, 2010

    Well, I think Elyse (and Skepchicks in general) are familiar with internet ‘controversy’ and the AoA/anti-vax M.O. Anti-vaxers are hands down, the nastiest internet mob, and they might catch others off guard– but I dont think its likely AoA will scare Elyse and Skepchicks off of promoting vaccinations.

  4. #4 isles
    December 5, 2010

    You’re nobody in the skeptical world until AoA has unleashed its harpies on you. Elyse, you’ve arrived!

  5. #5 Lawrence
    December 5, 2010

    Absolutely – if you can’t attack the message, attack the messenger. It is the last refuge for those with nothing but emotion to back up their “facts.”

    Of course, we’ll soon see the usual AoA trolls here – complaining about the same thing. I will disagree ahead of time, since time and time again, we’ve pointed out the errors in their message backed by actual facts and reasoned response – which they can’t defend against (without resorting to the Pharm-Shill gambit).

  6. #6 Todd W.
    December 5, 2010

    It took this long? I was expecting them to start calling her a “pharma whore” or something similar when they first got wind that AMC wasn’t running the PSA. The AoA folks are slacking.

    Elyse, we’ve all got your back. Keep up the good work!

  7. #7 iamnothouse.com
    December 5, 2010

    It’s amazing how much vitriol and rage is directed against someone for disagreeing with their viewpoints.

    Re a few posts back about which is the worst kind of denialist/woo-meister: are there any other groups out there which stoop to this level of personal attacks? Does Ken Ham say that Richard Dawkins is an unfit father? Does the Discovery Institute put out proclamations about how PZ Meyer’s children should be taken away from him because he’s clearly incapable of empathy? When was the last time the American Petrolium Institute made a picture of the IPCC dining on the bodies of children? The conception within the Vaccine Denialists that everyone who disagrees with them is a subhuman monster seems to be a trait unique to this bunch.

  8. #8 William Brinkman
    December 5, 2010

    I expected worse from them. Elyse will probably look at this as a badge of honor.

    The anti-vaxers really are slipping, and I’m very glad that they are.

  9. #9 Jennifer Gunter
    December 5, 2010

    Go Skepchick! Thank you !

  10. #10 novalox
    December 5, 2010

    The attacks by aoa and their associated ilk against Skepchick just shows how out of touch and vindictive they are against those who do not believe their pseudoscience and beliefs.

    Skepchick, thanks for your service.

  11. #11 Old Rockin' Dave
    December 5, 2010

    The crude and nasty flailings of the antivaxers remind me of the tantrums of frustrated children. Unable to win on the basis of fact and logic, they lash out crudely at anyone who dares to deny them their pacifier made out of nonsense and magical thinking.
    While they curse and swing their baby fists wildly, another disease has been eradicated by vaccination – rinderpest, a scourge of cattle herders across the world.
    As they say in Arabia, “The dogs bark but meanwhile the caravan moves on.” They will be left behind like the barking dogs of the proverb while vaccines conquer more and more diseases.

  12. #12 Johanna
    December 5, 2010

    Funny how none of these vindictive, horrible anti-vaxers stop to consider how their autistic children will feel when they grow up and accidentally stumble upon comments written about them being a “punishment”.

  13. #13 KWombles
    December 5, 2010

    Also note that Stagliano also says that Elyse’s actions to lobby the theaters is “almost autistic itself.” If this doesn’t indicate the lack of respect and acceptance that Stagliano has for autistic individuals, I don’t know what would. While I have no doubt she adores her daughters and loves them completely, it’s readily apparent that she has little respect for autistic self-advocates (as can readily be heard in her interview with Teri Arranga a few weeks ago).

  14. #14 Scott Cunningham
    December 5, 2010

    iamnothouse said:

    Re a few posts back about which is the worst kind of denialist/woo-meister: are there any other groups out there which stoop to this level of personal attacks?

    Well, don’t forget Ben Stein’s Expelled. That one got pretty ugly in places. But yes, AoA does seem to be the personal insult arm of the anti-vax community.

  15. #15 Julia
    December 5, 2010

    @Johanna – THIS. I try very hard to not be “that parent”, both in terms of not posting crap like that about my autistic kids, and in terms of treating them well so they won’t be bitching about me on the internet in years to come.

    (Of course, in making an effort to not make the parenting mistakes I’m aware are parenting mistakes with autistic offspring, I’m going to likely be making some new and different ones, which could provoke later bitching, but I can live with at least doing my best not to repeat the ones I’m aware are mistakes.)

  16. #16 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    What’s the problem with a PSA about not getting a mercury containing flu shot? Why was Elyse so upset about the PSA?? Makes no sense. Why would you complain about a PSA suggesting that people ask for a mercury free vaccine? Apparently, Elyse needs her head examined.

  17. #17 Narad, the Man of Iron
    December 5, 2010

    Last I checked, appropriating someone else’s intellectual property for the sake of inciting a gang-slime falls afoul of more than one Facebook ToS provision.

  18. #18 Lawrence
    December 5, 2010

    Obviously funny never watched the PSA – making people aware of options for the flu vaccine is one thing, making it seem like the normal vaccine is the equivalent to bitting the ends off of mercury thermometers & drinking the contents is something else entirely.

  19. #19 ANB
    December 5, 2010

    If I had a nickel for every time the dimwitted sociopaths at AoA were wrong, I could fund my own worthless telephone survey of autism prevalence. So it’s hardly a surprise that our anti-vaccine friends have misunderestimated Elise. I’ve met this woman. She is freaking awesome, and nothing short of a Predator drone strike will stop her.

  20. #20 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Funny:

    What’s the problem with a PSA about not getting a mercury containing flu shot?

    Um, yeah… syringes are full of full of liquid mercury. Not!

    Funny, because the PSA were lying with its stupid graphics.

  21. #21 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    Isn’t it funny how people with random meager objections to Orac’s posts always have names like Typical, or Funny, or huh?, or some such crap?

    The names often apply to the poster or what they post.

    Like with Funny up there, he defends a PSA that he doesn’t seem to have seen. I think THAT is funny.

  22. #22 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “Obviously funny never watched the PSA – making people aware of options for the flu vaccine is one thing, making it seem like the normal vaccine is the equivalent to bitting the ends off of mercury thermometers & drinking the contents is something else entirely”.

    Interesting, Lawrence. I re-watched the PSA just to make absolutely certain that I didn’t inadvertently miss the part about how a vaccine is equivalent to biting the ends off a mercury thermometer and drinking the contents… Guess what? Apparently you watched a different PSA than I did because, of course, there was nothing even remotely similar to your analogy in the PSA. Stop being so dramatic. What’s the problem with informing people that there is thimerosal (mercury) in flu shots and that you can request mercury-free shots? What are you so afraid of?

  23. #23 fgertgjuj89
    December 5, 2010

    “I wouldn’t trust my girls in her care for 5 seconds. I’d leave them with wolves first.”

    You know, that’s funny Kim. I was just thinking that wolves would do a better parenting job than an anti-vaxxer.

    Unless diseased children are a good sign or something, in which case I’d be happy to nominate you as Mother of the Year.

  24. #24 o98y,o gioj89
    December 5, 2010

    “What’s the problem with informing people that there is thimerosal (mercury) in flu shots and that you can request mercury-free shots? What are you so afraid of?”

    YES THIMEROSAL IS SUCH A HORRIBLE TOXIN/POISON/CHEMICAL WASTE/FLUFFY KITTEN MURDERER OF COURSE THERE IS NO PROBLEM SCAREMONGERING PEOPLE INTO BEING AFRAID OF VACCINES

    Oh wait, it isn’t.

    http://www.immunizationinfo.org/science/thimerosal-exposure-and-risk-autism

    NNii’s comment

    This study adds to the number of epidemiologic studies that have been unable to establish any association between ethylmercury exposure in thimerosal and the subsequent development of autism.

  25. #25 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “Like with Funny up there, he defends a PSA that he doesn’t seem to have seen. I think THAT is funny”.

    Ah, except that I have seen it… Hilarious, isn’t it? So, what’s the problem with letting people know that there is mercury in flu shots and you can request mercury-free flu shots? People can make up their own minds… What are you so afraid of?

    It is a beautiful thing that this was on Fox though… Yay! I guess I should thank the skankchick. Although the next time Skanky wishes to blog about thimerosal perhaps she should have the sense enough to learn how to friggin’ spell it!!!!! Dope. LOL!

  26. #26 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Sure, Funny, give us the real data on the harm caused by thimerosal… or that it leaks out of syringes as liquid mercury. Perhaps you could also tell us why it was necessary to have this “PSA” shown in states where thimerosal free vaccines are required by law to children and pregnant women?

  27. #27 89ywe789d
    December 5, 2010

    “It is a beautiful thing that this was on Fox though… Yay! I guess I should thank the skankchick. Although the next time Skanky wishes to blog about thimerosal perhaps she should have the sense enough to learn how to friggin’ spell it!!!!!”

    My, aren’t you just the epitome of classy? Of course, it comes as no surprise that you actually watch Fox News.

  28. #28 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    There is a lovely still from the “PSA” here… “and one huge shot of a needle and syringe surrounded by large droplets of mercury, of course not the thimerosal preservative used in shots (see screenshot).”

    Now tell us, exactly how that accurately depicts the level of thimerosal in a vaccine.

    Also we are told “She strongly implies that the “mercury” used in flu shots is harmful to pregnant women, infants, and children. Where are the data showing that? They do not exist.” Also tell us what evidence shows thimerosal is a danger in the actual levels used in vaccines.

    Scaremongering by twisting the truth and putting up images that have no basis in reality is called “lying.”

  29. #29 Liz Ditz
    December 5, 2010

    I don’t know why the AoA faithful are getting their panties in a bunch over Elyse…oh, wait, it was the parent of a child with autism, biologist Emily Willingham, who first put up the blogospheric flag about the intended Safeminds propoganda piece on November 9: Safeminds, counterpoint to public health, wants to run antivax “PSA” in movie theaters for the holidays.

    But Emily, on twitter only has a few hundred followers, while Elyse has over a thousand, and the @skepchick twitter account has (right now) 3,297…

    And of course, PZ Myers retweeted Elyse’s original tweet (I wish I’d saved a screenshot)…to his 42,802 followers.

  30. #30 Science Mom
    December 5, 2010

    Funny doesn’t seem to know the difference between ethyl and elemental mercury, nor amounts. The SafeMinds propaganda piece deliberately mislead the public by announcing that “mercury is toxic in all forms” without any regard to dose or species. The portrayal of pools of elemental mercury around a syringe was also deliberately misleading as well as disposal.

    The fact that Funny and her ilk on AoA need to resort to name-calling and wishing autism and brain damage on Elyse’s baby is just another example of what a happy, honourable group they are. When resorting to such cheap tactics, it is so evident that they lack any substantive argument. Not surprising given the character the ‘leadership’ there exhibits.

  31. #31 Liz Ditz
    December 5, 2010

    The first comment on today’s post al Age of Autism today reads:

    I guess reaching over a million Fox viewers and being on their site is more hits than the PSAs in a few movie theaters would have reached. Looks like SkankChick got kneecapped by the SnowCaps. Posted by: KneeCapped by SnowCaps | December 05, 2010 at 07:32 AM

    Here is Funny’s comment

    It is a beautiful thing that this was on Fox though… Yay! I guess I should thank the skankchick. Although the next time Skanky wishes to blog about thimerosal perhaps she should have the sense enough to learn how to friggin’ spell it!!!!! Dope. LOL!

    And, name-calling “Funny” person — thimerosol is a fairly common misspelling for thimerosal — by say CBS, CNN and several thousand others.

  32. #32 Orac
    December 5, 2010

    I don’t know why the AoA faithful are getting their panties in a bunch over Elyse…oh, wait, it was the parent of a child with autism, biologist Emily Willingham, who first put up the blogospheric flag about the intended Safeminds propoganda piece on November 9: Safeminds, counterpoint to public health, wants to run antivax “PSA” in movie theaters for the holidays.

    Actually, I mentioned the campaign four days before that. :-)

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/11/how_should_we_respond_to_the_anti-vaccin.php

  33. #33 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    Well this stooped to name calling pretty quickly.

    Hey Funny, can I call you jizz-for-brains since you’re clearly fucked in the head.

  34. #34 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Oh, and “Funny”, the most common spelling is “thiomersal.”

  35. #35 novalox
    December 5, 2010

    The level of class seen by funny and his ilk in aoa shows how low they will stoop to in order to get their way.

  36. #36 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “And, name-calling “Funny” person — thimerosol is a fairly common misspelling for thimerosal — by say CBS, CNN and several thousand others.”

    Exactly my point. It is a common misspelling by morons who haven’t done the first bit of research into the topic (just like CBS, CNN and several thousand others… including Elyse). Listen, I’m sure she’s a sweet person… she’s likely just ignorant on the topic. So why she would blog about/ask people to boycott the theaters, etc… over a topic she is clueless about is beyond me, but whatever…. In the long run, it was probably a good thing… More exposure for those who may not be aware that mercury is in flu shots.

  37. #37 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “Oh, and “Funny”, the most common spelling is “thiomersal.”

    Correct. As a person who is well versed in the topic… I am well aware of this alternative spelling. In fact, had Elyse used this alternative spelling, I wouldn’t have made such a point to address the topic. I may have wondered why she didn’t use the more standard version of the word (in the US, since I assume she lives here) but it would be an acceptable spelling. Thimerosol… Not so much. It’s less about the spelling, more about the fact that she is clearly not educated on the topic (considering she can’t spell the word that she is attempting to convince us is so safe). It just shows ignorance. That’s all.

  38. #38 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Funny:

    . It is a common misspelling by morons who haven’t done the first bit of research into the topic

    Here is a novel idea, why don’t you do something more interesting than a string of insults and answer my questions:

    1) How is showing pools of liquid mercury an accurate depiction of the amount of ethylmercury in an influenza vaccine?

    2) Why was one of the planned showings of the “PSA” in California, where by a dubious law children and pregnant women can only be given thimerosal-free vaccines?

    3) What real evidence do you have to offer that shows that thimerosal was ever a danger in vaccines? Do remember that the level of scientific evidence required here is fairly high. So no research by the Geiers or those who have massive conflicts of interest (like Hewitson).

  39. #39 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    Funny,
    Apparently someone has to point out that misspelling something doesn’t mean having no understanding of that topic.

    But since shes SO ignorant. Enlighten us. Please. If you’re so well educated, let it show.

  40. #40 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Also, “Funny”, if you seem to have an issue with a comment being posted: open another window to see if you comment made it through. That usually prevents the double posting.

  41. #41 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “Now tell us, exactly how that accurately depicts the level of thimerosal in a vaccine.”

    Before I do that… Why don’t you tell us exactly how much thimerosal is safe to inject into babies and developing fetuses? How much mercury is safe for babies to be shot up with… When you have the safety studies to back that up… then, we can talk about the Safemind’s PSA being “inaccurate”.

  42. #42 Sullivan
    December 5, 2010

    I keep thinking that I am beyond being surprised (and saddened) by that blog.

  43. #43 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    “Funny”, you are making a claim implying that thimerosal is dangerous when you said: “What’s the problem with a PSA about not getting a mercury containing flu shot?”. It is up to you to support that claim.

    That would be some much more interesting than your rants.

    Now for safety studies in thimerosal there are these:

    Pediatrics. 2010 Sep 13.
    Prenatal and Infant Exposure to Thimerosal From Vaccines and Immunoglobulins and Risk of Autism.
    Price CS, Thompson WW, Goodson B, Weintraub ES, Croen LA, Hinrichsen VL, Marcy M, Robertson A, Eriksen E, Lewis E, Bernal P, Shay D, Davis RL, Destefano F.

    Neurotox Res. 2010 Jul;18(1):59-68. Epub 2009 Sep 16.
    Are neuropathological conditions relevant to ethylmercury exposure?
    Aschner M, Ceccatelli S.

    Neuropsychological Performance 10 years after Immunization in Infancy with Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines
    Tozzi AE, Bisiacchi P, Tarantino V, De Mei B, D’Elia L, Chiarotti F, Salmaso S.
    Pediatrics, February 2009, Vol. 123(2):475-82

    Mercury Levels in Newborns and Infants after Receipt of Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines
    Pichichero ME, Gentile A, Giglio N, et al
    Pediatrics, February 2008; 121(2) e208-214

    Mercury, Vaccines, And Autism: One Controversy, Three Histories
    Baker JP
    American Journal of Public Health, February 2008;98(2): 244-253

    Continuing Increases in Autism Reported to California’s Developmental Services System: Mercury in Retrograde
    Schechter R, Grether JK
    Arch Gen Psychiatry, January 2008; 65(1):19-24

    Early Thimerosal Exposure and Neuropsychological Outcomes at 7 to 10 Years
    Thompson WW, Price C, Goodson B, et al; Vaccine Safety Datalink Team
    N Engl J Med, Sep 27, 2007; 357(13):1281-1292

  44. #44 daedalus2u
    December 5, 2010

    The response of those at AoA and commented on in #7 by nothouse is characteristic and also explains why they are curebies in the first place. I have written about the physiology of xenophobia which is where these feelings come from.

    http://daedalus2u.blogspot.com/2010/03/physiology-behind-xenophobia.html

    Essentially what happens is that when people meet someone they do a Turing Test to see if the other person is “human enough”. If you don’t pass the Turing Test, then xenophobia is triggered by default and you are considered to be non-human and so worthy of any abuse or maltreatment (via the uncanny valley effect) (there is a lot more detail on my blog post).

    This is what has happened with everyone at AoA. They have such a narrow and constricted view of what is “human”, that their autistic children don’t pass their Turing Test, so the AoA parents feel xenophobia toward their own children. Xenophobia so severe that their slogan “better dead than autistic” accurately reflects how they feel in their heart of hearts. This is why they are willing to clutch as straws, to do anything, no matter how bogus or dangerous because what they have now is not a “human child”, it is a changeling, a non-human simulacrum, something that looks like a human but is not.

    All the hatred that the AoA feel toward their autistic children has been displaced onto mercury, vaccines, Big Pharma, Orac, Paul Offit, and now Elyse and the skepchicks. Displacing the hatred they have for their children onto something else is actually good for their children. It is bad for the parents and for everyone else.

    They have generated their delusions about mercury and vaccines to rationalize the intense feelings of hatred they have. Invoking Godwin is how they actually feel. They feel that Orac and the others are just as evil and as worthy of hatred as any other mass murderer. Those feelings are pure delusion, but they are unable to understand that because the feelings of hate are such an integral part of their personas. Hating your own child as much as any mass murderer creates tremendous cognitive dissonance. They only way they can resolve the cognitive dissonance is by displacing the hatred onto someone else, the scapegoat.

  45. #45 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    Before I do that… Why don’t you tell us exactly how much thimerosal is safe to inject into babies and developing fetuses? How much mercury is safe for babies to be shot up with… When you have the safety studies to back that up… then, we can talk about the Safemind’s PSA being “inaccurate”.

    Wow. Just wow. If they are misrepresenting how much mercury is in vaccines, which is what they did, then it is inaccurate. If they showed more mercury than there is, it is inaccurate. If they showed less, it’s still inaccurate.

    Congratulations! You now know what inaccurate means!

    With that out of the way, they showed more mercury than is in the vaccines. (This, again, is inaccurate)

  46. #46 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    “Also, “Funny”, if you seem to have an issue with a comment being posted: open another window to see if you comment made it through. That usually prevents the double posting.”

    I could do that…. What’s up with Orac not being able to fix his blog so that posters don’t have to open up another window to see if it made it through? Just wonderin’….

  47. #47 Alareth
    December 5, 2010

    It’s amazing how much vitriol and rage is directed against someone for disagreeing with their viewpoints.

    Re a few posts back about which is the worst kind of denialist/woo-meister: are there any other groups out there which stoop to this level of personal attacks?

    9/11 Truthers stoop to that level and lower on a regular basis. Calling for the death of any perceived enemy (anyone not stupid enough to fall for their BS) is quite common.

    One of the “big” names, Killtown, drummed up a photoshop of the graves of the passengers that died at Shanksville with piles of shit replacing the tombstones. How does that rank against roasted baby for the holiday table?

  48. #48 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    What’s up with you making claims and not backing them up?
    We shouldn’t have to keeps asking you to do that.
    Just wonderin’…

  49. #49 Science Mom
    December 5, 2010

    Correct. As a person who is well versed in the topic… I am well aware of this alternative spelling.

    @ Funny, if you are so well-versed on the topic, then why has your rebuttal been instantly reduced to a spelling error and name-calling? Surely one as ‘well-versed’ as you could enlighten us.

  50. #50 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    “Funny”, Orac has nothing to do with the technical quirks of this blog. I tried to give you some helpful advice to keep you from looking foolish, I see it is lost on you. Just like the fact that there are several other blogs in the Scienceblogs network.

    Also, “Funny”, if the levels of thimerosal in vaccines in the 1990s was shown through several large studies to not be a health concern, then why would the level after being reduced by 98% be a health concern? Please answer with some actual data and evidence.

  51. #51 Funny
    December 5, 2010

    Here’s the thing. You crybabies have an issue with a PSA which is simply a warning to people that there is mercury in flu shots and advice to people to ask for mercury-free shots? What’s the problem with that?? If you wish to inject yourself with crap, that’s fine. I don’t. Many people wouldn’t want mercury injected into their bodies (whether or not it causes autism). Just allow the information to get out there… Instead, you cry about it. Grow up!

  52. #52 Tobinius
    December 5, 2010

    Funny:
    If the PSA had just been about

    informing people that there is thimerosal ([ethyl] mercury) in flu shots and that you can request mercury-free shots

    instead of avoiding vaccinations altogether, then I am sure that there wouldn’t be much of an issue here.
    But that is not what that PSA did. It lied, gave half truths, misrepresented facts and worst of all (as already noted by others), it was all about creating fear. Of course Faux was on board with this PSA, they’re all about fear mongering themselves.
    You also show how shallow your input is when all you can do is repeat the same statement several times. and then verbally abuse your opposition over a spelling error.
    With regards to your statement that you are well versed in this topic, now that is funny.

  53. #53 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    HAHAHAHA
    Funny.
    You fucking pussy.
    You come in like some cowboy with a huge dick, now you’re running away when we tell you to back up the claims you made while calling us crybabies because we have a problem with something that is lying to the public with potentially dangerous results.

    On the bright side, you may worse at this than Sid. While not a distinction many would love having, I’m sure it’s highly valuable in your looniverse.

  54. #54 Chris
    December 5, 2010

    Tobinius:

    You also show how shallow your input is when all you can do is repeat the same statement several times. and then verbally abuse your opposition over a spelling error.

    Which is also very boring.

    Funny:

    If you wish to inject yourself with crap, that’s fine.

    Where is your evidence that the amount of thimerosal in some influenza vaccines are “crap”? Please support that claim. Show what evidence disputes the several studies I posted.

    Or are you going to be a “Funny Sir Robin” bravely running away?

  55. #55 Chemmomo
    December 5, 2010

    Funny,
    do you ever eat any fish?
    just wonderin’…..

  56. #56 iojefioj
    December 5, 2010

    “As a person who is well versed in the topic…”

    The only way you would fit the description of ‘well-versed’ Funny is if you were using a totally different definition from what the rest of humanity uses. More precisely, one that is completely the opposite of being well-versed.

  57. #57 rtiojiojiopj89g
    December 5, 2010

    “Funny,
    do you ever eat any fish?”

    You’re giving Funny way too much credit if you think he’s smart enough to understand what you’re trying to imply by that question.

  58. #58 Drivebyposter
    December 5, 2010

    You’re giving Funny way too much credit if you think he’s smart enough to understand what you’re trying to imply by that question.

    He’s been given too much credit if anyone assumes he’s smart enough to know when he’s eating fish.

  59. #59 Werdna
    December 5, 2010

    @funny -“You crybabies have an issue with a PSA which is simply a warning to people that there is mercury in flu shots ”

    The problem with your argument is that it’s rather likely untrue. I find it pretty difficult to believe that you have actually watched this video with an unjaundiced eye.

    0:19 – [Two images shown, one of a pregnant mother and other of a garbage dump]
    “Our health agencies have trouble telling the difference between these two pictures”.
    0:28 – [Checkmark has been superimposed on mother and an "X" has been superimposed on dump - now identified as a landfill]
    “These can be safely injected into a mother but can not be disposed of in a landfill”

    So this isn’t *simply* informing people that mercury is in (very few) vaccines. There is an implied argument that the amount of Thimerisol is harmful as well as a fundamental misunderstanding as to why you can inject (insanely small amounts) of mercury into ones body safely but it is considered not safe to dump it into a landfill (first of which is the inability to understand that the argument is an equivocation). It also implies that the various agencies which endorse these vaccines are incompetent.

    So “ta da” you argument: “It is simply about” is defeated since it is shown to be not “simply about” that (in less than the first 30s no less). You can now go troll somewhere else.

    Glad to be of service.

  60. #60 Bob
    December 5, 2010

    Does funny understand the dose-response effect? If thimerosal is the cause of autism, why haven’t we seen autism rates collapse after thimerosal was removed from childhood vaccines? Dan and Mark said there would be a reduction of incidents after the removal (a real empirical of their “scientific” theories). And yet, the rate of autism have continued to rise since the removal of the deadly mercury.

    Funny, do you have some sort of bizarre, alternative, homeopathic version of the dose-response effect (i.e. the less thimersoal in the vaccine, the greater the biological effects) that you base your model on?

  61. #61 Liz Ditz
    December 5, 2010

    From Funny,

    You crybabies have an issue with a PSA which is simply a warning to people that there is mercury in flu shots

    My goodness, Funny, for somebody who claims to be “well versed” in these issues, you certainly have a problem with accuracy.

    Here are the thimerosal-free flu vaccines:

    Fluzone pre-filled syringes, 0.25 ML (6-35 mos) = 0 thimerosal
    Fluzone pre-filled syringes, 0.5 ML (>35 mos) = 0 thimerosal
    Fluzone 0.5 ML vial = (>35 mos) 0 thimerosal
    Agriflu pre-filled syringes, 0.5 ML (>18 years) = 0 thimerosal
    Fluarix pre-filled syringes, 0.5 ML (>35 mos) = 0 thimerosal
    Afluria pre-filled syringes, 0.5 ML (>9 years) = 0 thimerosal
    FluMist nasal 0.2 mL sprayer (2–49 yrs) = 0 thimerosal

    The only formulations that contain thimerosal are:

    Fluzone 5.0 mL multidose vial 25.0 mcg per 0.5 ML dose
    Fluvirin 5.0 mL multidose vial 25.0 mcg per 0.5 ML dose
    Fluvirin 0.5 mL prefilled syringe < 1.0 mcg per 0.5 ML dose
    FluLaval 5.0 mL multidose vial 25.0 mcg per 0.5 ML dose

    Since you are so "well versed in the topic", Funny, can you tell me how big a 25.0 mcg drop of thimerosal would be? Imagine thimerosal was bright red, and you put a 25.0 mcg drop on a piece of white plastic -- would you be able to see it with the naked eye? How big is a 25.0 mcg drop compared to say, a poppy seed?

    Changing the subject to the opposition to the Safeminds propaganda piece:

    If Safeminds had made a spot that said something along the lines of:

    "Flu vaccines provide protection against a serious infectious disease, and we encourage all to seek vaccination. But our organization is still concerned about health risks of thimerosal, so we encourage pregnant women and parents of elementary-school children to ask for single-dose syringes from the four companies that make thimerosal-free vaccines, or to consider the nasal inhalant form of vaccine. We do not endorse vaccination from multi-dose vials, which use thimerosal as an anti-contaminant."

    I would have not opposed that ad. It’s still spreading fear about thimerosal, but at least it is supporting vaccination.

    But that’s not what the spot said at all.

  62. #62 Azkyroth
    December 6, 2010

    While I have no doubt she adores her daughters and loves them completely

    I do.

  63. #63 todthegod
    December 6, 2010

    Grow up!

    – says the troll who wrote this:

    Yay! I guess I should thank the skankchick. Although the next time Skanky wishes to blog about thimerosal perhaps she should have the sense enough to learn how to friggin’ spell it!!!!! Dope. LOL!

    Maybe you should follow your own advice, troll.

  64. #64 Jimbo Jones
    December 6, 2010

    I do agree that the lack of empathy and ability to see the larger picture is stunning and almost autistic itself.

    I know KWombles mentioned this earlier… But as an autist myself I just had to contribute this comment:

    Screw you, anonymous AoA editor! Screw you and the horse you rode in on. I’m insulted that you think I’m incompetent as a human and fear for your children and their education, if you think autists are completely incapable of empathy, or of seeing the big picture.

    Of course, I can’t possibly exist, being in that I’m adult age, independent and autistic. Bastards.

  65. #65 KWombles
    December 6, 2010

    Funny has a problem with the misspelling, but the AoA comment on facebook misspelled thimerosal “thimeosal.” Of course, we knew they weren’t well-versed.

  66. #66 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “There is an implied argument that the amount of Thimerisol is harmful as well as a fundamental misunderstanding as to why you can inject (insanely small amounts) of mercury into ones body safely but it is considered not safe to dump it into a landfill…”

    Listen, flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash can due to worries over mercury in the environment. FACT. It has to be disposed of with care. Why would anyone would want crap like that injected into them and/or why would anyone cry over this FACT being shown on a PSA? Get over yourself… Again, go ahead and inject yourself with whatever you want, but allow others to be informed of the facts… Many pregnant women do all that they can to avoid toxic exposures. They should know about this. Whiners.

    ps. After all this…. you aren’t careful with your spelling? Do some research, newbie.

  67. #67 daedalus2u
    December 6, 2010

    funny’s problem with the technical issues of Orac’s site tells us it is all about him, him, him. Anything that does not exactly correspond to what he wants is at fault and he feels no compulsion to change anything he does the slightest bit to achieve a better outcome.

    This is exactly the curebie mindset. Find a magic treatment that magically turns the child you have into the child you want.

    The “problem” isn’t in the child that the curebie parent can’t love, the problem is in the curebie parent that can’t love their child. A problem that no amount of hate is going to fix. And yes, misery loves company, so the curebies band together to reinforce their dysfunction, tell themselves they are doing the right thing and reinforcing their cultish bonding by demonizing those in the reality based community. While the fawning quacks prey on them and sell them all manner of quackery, while draining their money and poisoning their children.

  68. #68 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “Funny has a problem with the misspelling, but the AoA comment on facebook misspelled thimerosal “thimeosal.” Of course, we knew they weren’t well-versed.”

    Noticed it and it’s pretty obvious that that was a typo on the AoA comment. One missing letter, one time. Elyse embarrassed herself over and over again by spelling the word wrong on numerous occasions. Big difference obviously. If Elyse had “misspelled” the word one time and then spelled it correctly the other times, that’s a mistake. Instead, it’s clear she’s not very well versed on the topic. Try again.

  69. #69 Adam_Y
    December 6, 2010

    Listen, flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash can due to worries over mercury in the environment. FACT.

    God almighty not this retarded canard. Have you ever actually looked at the law? Seriously, I work in a laboratory and if you think mercury is given special treatment you are wrong. Its any chemical that would be dangerous in sufficient enough quantities in disposal of it.

  70. #70 Lawrence
    December 6, 2010

    funny how you can’t dispose of blood in a landfill either – or urine, or any other medical waste…..

    Seriously, if that’s your argument, then it isn’t one (and argument, I mean).

  71. #71 MikeMa
    December 6, 2010

    @NotFunny,
    Mercury, especially ethyl mercury, the type used in vaccines is flushed from the system very rapidly. Mercury, as a waste product, has to be dealt with carefully in the environment because it has no where to go and will accumulate. Forever. That is why environmental rules are so tight. Try not to conflate passing exposure with permanent repository.

    Thanks for playing troll. Try not to let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

  72. #72 Jim Lippard
    December 6, 2010

    #7: “Does Ken Ham say that Richard Dawkins is an unfit father?” Not that I’m aware of, but Richard Dawkins says that anyone who raises their children in a religion is guilty of child abuse.

  73. #73 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “Mercury, especially ethyl mercury, the type used in vaccines is flushed from the system very rapidly. Mercury, as a waste product, has to be dealt with carefully in the environment because it has no where to go and will accumulate. Forever.”

    Mercury is not “flushed from the system very rapidly”… Stop being an idiot. Just like in the environment… mercury in the system will accumulate forever… in your brain, your heart, your whatever… You just sound insane trying to say that mercury is safe to be injected into humans. Who believes this crap?

  74. #74 feyhjo
    December 6, 2010

    “Listen, flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash can due to worries over mercury in the environment. FACT.”

    You really don’t understand the difference between a microscopic amount of ethylmercury in the body that’s easily flushed away (and nowhere near the amount of methylmercury you’d likely get if you ate a can of tuna that day), and the law requiring medical waste to be disposed of safely instead of simply being tossed all into landfills?

    Troll.

  75. #75 Joseph
    December 6, 2010

    Listen, flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash can due to worries over mercury in the environment. FACT. It has to be disposed of with care. Why would anyone would want crap like that injected into them and/or why would anyone cry over this FACT being shown on a PSA?

    Because it’s exactly the sort of misinformation that your average movie-goer wouldn’t be able to evaluate critically. It would just look like a completely plausible argument to them.

    Flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash because there’s regulation for that sort of thing, and there are reasons for environmental regulation. It applies to industrial waste, including hospital waste.

    Environmental standards are not medical standards.

    If you have a bottle of Selsun Blue at your house, for example, I’m pretty sure you can toss it in the trash, no problem. But if you just do the numbers, Selsun Blue contains about 10,000 times the Selenium ppm that would classify waste as toxic.

    See, in medicines and food, the ppm is not what matters. The amount (grams or milligrams) is what matters. In environmental regulation, talking about ppm’s makes more sense.

    A tuna sandwich contains about 20 micrograms of methylmercury, whereas a thimerosal-containing vaccine contains about 25 micrograms of ethylmercury. (Different type of mercury, I know, but I don’t think that’s the key point.) The concentration would be higher in the vaccine, but this is irrelevant.

  76. #76 h8g
    December 6, 2010

    “(Different type of mercury, I know, but I don’t think that’s the key point.)”

    It is a very important point to take note of though; methylmercury is far more difficult for the body to deal with, whereas the ethylmercury in vaccines is much easier for the body to flush out. This is a point that a lot of anti-vaxxers seem to miss and it’s worth repeating.

  77. #77 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “It is a very important point to take note of though; methylmercury is far more difficult for the body to deal with, whereas the ethylmercury in vaccines is much easier for the body to flush out. This is a point that a lot of anti-vaxxers seem to miss and it’s worth repeating.”

    Another lie. There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true. Move on… this is 2010.

  78. #78 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    Mercury is not “flushed from the system very rapidly”… Stop being an idiot. Just like in the environment… mercury in the system will accumulate forever… in your brain, your heart, your whatever… You just sound insane trying to say that mercury is safe to be injected into humans. Who believes this crap?

    Funny is so well-versed s/he doesn’t need to review even some of the available evidence, s/he just knows.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18245396
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19560158
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20386881

    Yes, a small fraction will accumulate but what you fail to understand is just that amount isn’t harmful and isn’t a chronic exposure. Instead of fretting about an insignificant, acute exposure of a rapidly-cleared substance, you should concern yourselves with chronic, environmental exposures of whatever else. If you believe that the human body is so fragile as to not be able to metabolise environmental contaminants at any level, then we wouldn’t have survived. Your arguments are weak.

  79. #79 Raging Bee
    December 6, 2010

    What’s the problem with informing people that there is thimerosal (mercury) in flu shots…?

    “Funny” just answered his/her own question: the problem is in equating thimerosal with mercury, which is flat-out dishonest no matter how you spell it. Thimerosal is not mercury, just as water is not hydrogen. “Funny’s” claims to being “well-versed” in this subject are just plain bogus.

  80. #80 Raging Bee
    December 6, 2010

    There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true.

    Citation, please? Your word is worthless and you have no credibility, so you really need to back up your assertions.

  81. #81 confused
    December 6, 2010

    I’m confused. I’ve never been on this site before (and I have been on the site you are talking about, but I’m checking it out after reading this) – it was a link on a google alert, so I thought I’d read the article. But the comments on this site seem meaner than anything I’ve read anywhere else. What I’m ascertaining is that parents with autistic children want a mercury free vaccine, and the people on this site therefore think they are pro-disease and their children would be better off being raised by wolves? I really don’t understand this – I have a friend with an autistic child, so I was trying to look more into it, and perhaps I was naive thinking that a site about science would have information containing the science behind the cuases of autism. I wasn’t prepared for the hatred. Judging by all the comments, I’m sure if this gets posted, there will be a lot of really mean responses. I don’t intend to stay on here long enough to find out though…

  82. #82 regj9j98
    December 6, 2010

    Confused – you appear to have ended up that way because you haven’t worked terribly hard on your reading comprehension.

    That or you’re an anti-vaxxer trying to attempting to make others look bad via an emotional ploy by claiming we’re all meanies and playing the victim card.

  83. #83 MikeMa
    December 6, 2010

    @confused,
    If you don’t stay here you will remain just that, confused.

    Mercury does not cause autism. Thimerosal does not cause autism. (See many links above.) Unfortunately the fools at AoA continue to want more money thrown down the rabbit hole of mercury is teh evulz. Money could be spent more productively almost anywhere else.

  84. #84 trhjj0oj09
    December 6, 2010

    “Citation, please? Your word is worthless and you have no credibility, so you really need to back up your assertions.”

    Funny making citations? As if that’d ever happen. After all, it’s not as if he’s backed up any of his original claims so far.

  85. #85 Triskelethecat Midwife of Death
    December 6, 2010

    @Funny: Studies? Oh, good. List them for us. After all, Chris gave you the studies that showed thimerosal is not dangerous in the doses obtained from vaccines. You could at least return the courtesy by listing

    There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true. Move on… this is 2010.

    I’m sure you will do that promptly, since you seem to be able to respond to the commenters here quite quickly, and so I thank you in advance.

  86. #86 Triskelethecat Midwife of Death
    December 6, 2010

    AANNDD…I forgot to preview and see that my sig is my Pharyngula sig. One of these days I will learn…

    MI Dawn

  87. #87 Calli Arcale
    December 6, 2010

    Another lie. There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true. Move on… this is 2010.

    If that’s true, and you are so well-versed, perhaps you’d care to share those studies? The multiple studies I’ve seen showed that ethylmercury had a very short half-life compared to methylmercury — just a few days in infants, which means it’s long gone before the next vaccine. (Note: the SafeMinds PSA depicted inorganic mercury, not any mercury salt, so the distinction is pretty irrelevant when attempting to defend the PSA. They were quite clearly being disingenuous.)

  88. #88 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Funny:

    There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true.

    Argument by assertion does not work. List the studies. Remember even the SafeMinds paid research by Burbacher (where he had to add thimerosal because they could not find any) showed there was a difference.

    Oh, and you still have not answered any of my questions with cites. Even though you are the one who has made claims, I did provide cites. So come on, show us all that great research!

    confused:

    But the comments on this site seem meaner than anything I’ve read anywhere else.

    You do realize that “Funny” is an Age of Autism regular and his/her style is more in tune with that site. If you think we are mean for asking him/her for evidence instead of random insults, then please go over there.

    If I have said anything mean, can you please point it out. Do tell me how explaining that the PSA was lying is mean compared to the name calling by “Funny.”

    What I’m ascertaining is that parents with autistic children want a mercury free vaccine, and the people on this site therefore think they are pro-disease and their children would be better off being raised by wolves?

    Interesting interpretation. Since pediatric vaccines have been virtually free of thimerosal for almost ten years, the issue is that it is still an issue (ask why Sallie Bernard needed finding some). Actually, what is being discussed is the treatment of the the Age of Autism posters of people they do not agree with, especially with like “skankchick.”

  89. #89 Lawrence
    December 6, 2010

    Confused obviously hasn’t spent anytime on AoA’s comment page – because we are certainly much more civil in response to rational arguments than anyone over there has ever been (never mind that they censor everything anyway).

    If you do actually want good information, I’d recommend checking out Todd’s site (links to his name, I believe) and hanging around here for a while.

  90. #90 KWombles
    December 6, 2010

    Confused really is confused, considering it is Stagliano herself who brought wolves into the discussion.

  91. #91 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    [Liz: Since you are so "well versed in the topic", Funny, can you tell me how big a 25.0 mcg drop of thimerosal would be? Imagine thimerosal was bright red, and you put a 25.0 mcg drop on a piece of white plastic -- would you be able to see it with the naked eye? How big is a 25.0 mcg drop compared to say, a poppy seed?]

    Your point is taken. Since it is so visibly small it is impossible to have any biological effect therefore it should have no biological reason to be in the vaccine in the first place.

    “Flu vaccines provide may provide protection against a {possibly/potentially} serious infectious disease in {susceptible} individuals who do not actually respond very well to the vaccine, and we encourage all to seek vaccination to help these individuals out and covering for the vaccine’s shortcomings.”

  92. #92 Joseph
    December 6, 2010

    It is a very important point to take note of though; methylmercury is far more difficult for the body to deal with, whereas the ethylmercury in vaccines is much easier for the body to flush out.

    Be that as it may, I think it doesn’t address the anti-vax gambit. The EPA doesn’t have different standards for methyl- and ethyl-mercury, as far as I recall. Suppose the standard for ethyl-mercury toxicity in waste is 0.2 ppm (and I can only assume it is.) So what you need to address is the fact that TCVs contain 25 ppm ethyl-mercury. And the answer is that ppm is irrelevant (except as an environmental standard.) The dose is relevant.

  93. #93 Todd W.
    December 6, 2010

    @Lawrence

    Yep, my name links to antiantivax.flurf.net, a (hopefully) decent resource that addresses some of the misinformation put out by the anti-vaccine types.

    Also, for an illustration of the type of comments found at AoA and how their commenting policy works, I wrote about it on Silenced back in May. There’s also my write-up from November of the Sullivan=Bonnie Offit nonsense that touches on AoA’s comment policy.

  94. #94 Drivebyposter
    December 6, 2010

    #7: “Does Ken Ham say that Richard Dawkins is an unfit father?” Not that I’m aware of, but Richard Dawkins says that anyone who raises their children in a religion is guilty of child abuse.

    No he doesn’t. He said some beliefs are…you know the ones where you’re born evil and undeserving of love but god in his super awesomeness still loves you even though you suck ass and deserve to be tortured. Things like that.
    But the case could be made that if you teach your children a distorted view of reality that is psychological abuse.

    And about the vaccines not being allowed to be dumped into landfills, would that be because they are considered medical waste? That is something normal people don’t want dumped straight into the ground. Funny doesn’t seem to count as normal in this aspect.

    As to the rude posts, I’ll take credit for much of that. But, eh I’m a bit of a dick and Funny is a stupid asshole. I’m not going to offer respect to someone who doesn’t deserve it.

    Speaking of that, he still hasn’t backed up a thing he has said.
    Still.
    Still.
    Still.

    Still….

    I wonder why…

  95. #95 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    {Driveby: As to the rude posts, I’ll take credit for much of that. But, eh I’m a bit of a dick and Funny is a stupid asshole. I’m not going to offer respect to someone who doesn’t deserve it.}

    Exactly why SBM and Skeptics will stay a marginalized cult.

  96. #96 MikeMa
    December 6, 2010

    @Drivebyposter
    I’m sure NotFunny will, if he even posts again, not have any citations.

    I get the feeling that the AoA ghouls (Funny, Typical, etc) have some sort of round-robin thing which assigns a thread here to one of their trolls-in-residence. That troll is given the job of spiking the thread until a better one comes along.

    I love conspiracy theories:)

    As for being rude, when you reach the level at which AoA commenters savage science, pharma, and the rest, then you can be considered too rude. You are nowhere near that level.

  97. #97 Todd W.
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse has a post up about the response she’s received from the AoA types. Some real class, those anti-vaxers. A right posh crowd.

  98. #98 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    Studies by Burbacher, Hewitson (among others) show what damage may be attributed to thimerosal (mercury) in vaccines. That being said… does it really matter? What if I simply want people to be aware that MERCURY is in their flu vaccines. What’s the friggin’ problem? It’s as if you ‘skeptics’ don’t want people to know that? I’m asking you why? Why is it such a horrible thing to allow people to know that they can request mercury free flu shots? What’s the problem? Seriously.

    Are you suggesting that it would be ok to have a 15 second spot run… in which a simple… request mercury free flu shots was stated and that’s all? Is the real problem with the talk surrounding the spot… To me, I don’t think this is your gripe… Honestly, I don’t think that you want people to associate flu shots with thimerosal being in them? Why???

  99. #99 j67ih090
    December 6, 2010

    “Exactly why SBM and Skeptics will stay a marginalized cult.”

    Go tell insulin suffers that medical science that’s been proven to work is “a marginalized cult”. Go tell that to someone who’s gotten a polio vaccine. Go tell that to anyone who’s had life-saving surgery that wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for advances in medical science (and no, “psychic surgery” doesn’t fucking count as science).

    Idiotic troll.

  100. #100 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Burbacher’s study said no such thing (and it was a lousy study). Plus, you were specifically told to not cite Hewitson due to her obvious conflict of interest (the blue text means it is a URL link, this time try it!):

    ADDENDUM: It appears that perhaps I was too easy on Dr. Hewitson. I really, truly wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt. However, it turns out that she appears to have a very serious and seemingly undisclosed conflict of interest, as a commenter has informed me. Not only is she married to Dan Hollenbeck, a regular contributor to the Age of Autism website, but she and her husband are listed as litigants in the Autism Omnibus proceedings. She did not, as far as I can tell, disclose that conflict of interest. At least, it is not appended to the abstract.

    Please try again. This time actually list the studies (see how Science Mom and I did it on this thread).

  101. #101 Drivebyposter
    December 6, 2010

    Speaking of stupid assholes, there’s auger!

    Funny. You don’t know how to read do you? I mean…we’ve already pointed out our stance. And you keep saying the same motherfucking thing. You. Dumb. Sack. Of. Shit.

  102. #102 4535tu498f89e
    December 6, 2010

    Funny keeps asking “Why???” in spite of the fact that all of his disingenuous nonsense like “I simply want people to be aware that MERCURY is in their flu vaccines. What’s the friggin’ problem?” has already been refuted countless times by other commenters.

    Perhaps Funny has a problem with literacy? Or maybe he’s too lazy to actually read through the comments since he apparently is too lazy to make proper citations.

  103. #103 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Well, 4535tu498f89e, he/she did try to use Hewitson’s work as proof, even though I specifically said it was not valid due to a very serious conflict of interest.

  104. #104 Joseph
    December 6, 2010

    What if I simply want people to be aware that MERCURY is in their flu vaccines. What’s the friggin’ problem?

    @Funny: To make it really clear, the “problem” is that you do not simply want that. What you want (and what Safeminds wants) is to use that to argue that health authorities are intentionally and knowingly injecting toxic waste in people. That’s clearly the message of the ad.

  105. #105 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    j6opihph:

    Go tell insulin suffers that medical science that’s been proven to work is “a marginalized cult”.

    What’s an insulin suffer?

    SBM is not science! If it were it would be called scientific medicine. Not science BASED medicine. But what’s in a name anyways?

  106. #106 Lawrence
    December 6, 2010

    I had thought we made it pretty clear what the problem was – not the message per say (yes, there are options out there), but exactly how it was presented (and Joseph hit the nail on the head with the imagery).

  107. #107 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    Studies by Burbacher, Hewitson (among others) show what damage may be attributed to thimerosal (mercury) in vaccines.

    No, the Burbacher study was purely pharmacokinetics and not pharmacodynamics. Which pathetic Hewitson study are you referring to? The one that demonstrated no differences in monkeys receiving the birth dose of hep b or the one that demonstrated normal amygdala growth in monkeys receiving TCVs?

    That being said… does it really matter? What if I simply want people to be aware that MERCURY is in their flu vaccines. What’s the friggin’ problem? It’s as if you ‘skeptics’ don’t want people to know that? I’m asking you why? Why is it such a horrible thing to allow people to know that they can request mercury free flu shots? What’s the problem? Seriously.

    It matters because the message was steeped in propaganda, false statements and emotive and misleading images. Had they truly wished to provide a public service message, they would not have had to use the syntax and imagery they did. They know what they are doing and we know it too. But they rely upon the ignorance of their followers and banked on the same ignorance from the general public to perpetuate their erroneous message. All the while playing doe-eyed innocents in the matter.

    If anything, you fools should be angry at your taskmasters for putting so much money into a stupid and ill-fated campaign rather than raise money for worthy causes. Don’t take it out on some vocal individuals and their children; it’s vile.

  108. #108 Tobinius
    December 6, 2010

    Funny:

    Mercury is not “flushed from the system very rapidly”… Stop being an idiot. Just like in the environment… mercury in the system will accumulate forever… in your brain, your heart, your whatever… You just sound insane trying to say that mercury is safe to be injected into humans. Who believes this crap?

    Another lie. There have been studies done that have shown that the old “methylmercury is more dangerous to the body, blah, blah, blah” is simply not true. Move on… this is 2010.

    This is from the FDA website:

    At the initial National Vaccine Advisory Committee-sponsored meeting on thimerosal in 1999, concerns were expressed that infants may lack the ability to eliminate mercury. More recent NIAID-supported studies at the University of Rochester and National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD examined levels of mercury in blood and other samples from infants who had received routine immunizations with thimerosal-containing vaccines. [Pichichero ME, et al. Lancet 360:1737-1741 (2002)] Blood levels of mercury did not exceed safety guidelines for methyl mercury for all infants in these studies. Further, mercury was cleared from the blood in infants exposed to thimerosal faster than would be predicted for methyl mercury; infants excreted significant amounts of mercury in stool after thimerosal exposure, thus removing mercury from their bodies. These results suggest that there are differences in the way that thimerosal and methyl mercury are distributed, metabolized, and excreted. Thimerosal appears to be removed from the blood and body more rapidly than methyl mercury.

    “Funny” how facts work. Meanwhile all you can do is “blah, blah, blah” your way from one pathetic entry after another, like a broken record. And still with the spelling errors? Seriously?

  109. #109 Phoenix Woman
    December 6, 2010

    It is a very important point to take note of though; methylmercury is far more difficult for the body to deal with, whereas the ethylmercury in vaccines is much easier for the body to flush out. This is a point that a lot of anti-vaxxers seem to miss and it’s worth repeating.

    It is, and I dare “funny” to find a single reputable study that disproves this. Of course he won’t, he’ll just try to change the subject, as he always does when he is shown to be wrong and/or lying.

    On the other hand, here are links to studies showing that ethylmercury leaves the body faster than does methylmercury:

    http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/docs/2005/7712/abstract.pdf

    http://aapnews.aappublications.org/cgi/reprint/25/1/23 (2004 article. This article is behind a pay wall; per Google cache, it begins as follows: “Both methylmercury and ethylmercury have received considerable attention in recent years as
    mercury increasingly is recognized as a powerful developmental neurotoxicant. Mistakenly, these
    toxicants are being discussed in similar manners and contexts, suggesting that they can …”)

    Here’s a site that compares ethyl and methyl:

    http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/vaccines/research/Pages/mercuryExposures.aspx

    All of this is why the World Health Organization approved thiomersal/thimerosal/ethylmercury as a vaccine preservative: http://www.who.int/vaccine_safety/topics/thiomersal/statement_jul2006/en/

  110. #110 brian
    December 6, 2010

    Studies by Burbacher, Hewitson (among others) show what damage may be attributed to thimerosal (mercury) in vaccines.

    Now that’s funny!

    You might be interested to learn that Hewitson proved that in infant macaques administered thimerosal-containing vaccines the amygdala increases in volume just as it does in normal infant macaques and in typically-developing human infants; that was rather unlike the case in her pitifully small and apparently aberrant control “group” of two animals. If the authors or “reviewers” had bothered to check the relevant literature, that paper would never have been published. You won’t learn that in the Age of Autism echo chamber, because AoA blocked comments that show that that black is not white and up is not down. Hewitson’s study is not even wrong.

    http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2010/07/the-genie-is-out-of-the-bottle-vaccines-cause-autism/

  111. #111 Prometheus
    December 6, 2010

    The next time someone uses the tired canard that vaccines containing thimerosal cannot be disposed of in the “regular trash” and are classified as “hazardous waste”, remind (inform?) them that even the vaccines (including the influenza vaccine) without thimerosal are considered “hazardous waste”, as are urine, feces, blood, saliva, sputum, tissue samples and used bandaids.

    For that matter, the E. coli cultures we use in freshman biology lab – which are less pathogenic than the E. coli in the average person’s gut – are also classified as “hazardous waste” when it comes time to dispose of them. Even common soil bacteria, when they are grown in the lab, must be disposed of as “hazardous waste”.

    Never confuse regulations with reality.

    Prometheus

  112. #112 dt
    December 6, 2010

    I also found this comment by Karen Harker on AoA:

    “There were no health problems until vaccines. I know this because i have done 20years reasearch I (I have a brain!) into the subject. Homeopathy is the only way to go.”

    Are you sure “Karen” isn’t a pharma plant designed to make the antivaccine lot sound like complete cretins?

  113. #113 Lawrence
    December 6, 2010

    Where is “the stupid, it burns” poster when you need it. That’s got to be a Poe.

  114. #114 Elyse Anders
    December 6, 2010

    Thank you, everyone, for your support.

    The fact that my baby girl was featured as a target for ridicule (and worse) had me pretty shaken yesterday. I had serious reservations about whether I was doing the right thing for my family.

    But I did nothing wrong. And I won’t be bullied into submission. I got into this fight knowing it would get messy and it would get mean. I’m not taking my ball and going home just because one member of the opposition threatened to rape and murder me… I mean, who does that?

    Besides, I have ALL the good guys on my side!

  115. #115 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse, thank you for your efforts. You should be proud that you have caused AoA enough grief to become a target. And yeah, going after your daughter is the depth of depravity.

  116. #116 gtdgijio
    December 6, 2010

    “What’s an insulin suffer?”

    I’m terribly sorry – I worded it originally as people who take insulin but didn’t change it to diabetes. Now fuck off, you’re dealing with semantics. I would much rather trust medicine based on scientific data rather than some bullshit that I’m told works without having any evidence for it. I’ll trust actual doctors, thank you very much.

    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/

  117. #117 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    gtdgijio, Little Augie is not worth bothering with. He is a loathsome little troll. Just ignore him.

  118. #118 Gareth John
    December 6, 2010

    Wow – never had the misfortune to encounter these AofA wackos before. Thank you Elyse and Co for continuing to counter the overwhelming barrage of ignorance and scaremongering spewed forth by these cowardly and grotesque people.

    AofA – shame on you.

  119. #119 Drivebyposter
    December 6, 2010

    Yay Elyse!
    Don’t worry, batman is here to save the day! He will protect you!

    http://img695.imageshack.us/img695/7563/batmansavestheday.jpg

  120. #120 Raging Bee
    December 6, 2010

    SBM is not science! If it were it would be called scientific medicine. Not science BASED medicine.

    So now augie is down to pointless grade-school word-games? What a pathetic little ankle-biter.

  121. #121 Andy
    December 6, 2010

    @Jimbo Jones #65:

    I know KWombles mentioned this earlier… But as an autist myself I just had to contribute this comment:

    Screw you, anonymous AoA editor! Screw you and the horse you rode in on. I’m insulted that you think I’m incompetent as a human and fear for your children and their education, if you think autists are completely incapable of empathy, or of seeing the big picture.

    Of course, I can’t possibly exist, being in that I’m adult age, independent and autistic. Bastards.

    As an adult with Aspeger’s, I couldn’t agree with you more. There are a lot of reasons that AoA disgusts me, but none more so than that attitude.

  122. #122 Prometheus
    December 6, 2010

    From Elyse Anders:

    “I’m not taking my ball and going home just because one member of the opposition threatened to rape and murder me… I mean, who does that?”

    This is a good question – who does threaten to rape and murder people who disagree with them? I’ll go out on a limb and say that “skeptics” rarely – if ever – use threats of violence to influence people with whom they disagree. However, threats of violence seem to be shockingly common from the anti-vaccinistas as well as their fellow-travelers in anti-autism advocacy and other “health freedom” movements. [Note: it was threats against my children that led me to adopt my pseudonymous lifestyle.]

    What does it tell us about people when their response to critics is to yell, “Shut your mouth or I’ll hit you!”? For one, it says that they aren’t very confident about their position (duh!). Even more importantly, it says that they don’t understand their position well enough to articulate the reasons why they feel they are correct.

    This, it seems, is the crux of the matter. Most of the promoters of anti-vaccination positions (as well as the rest of the “health freedom” clan) are simply repeating what they have heard or read. Something about it resonates with them – a distrust of authority, resentment of doctors, etc. – and they believe it because it reinforces their biases. They have no idea whether it makes sense or even if it conforms to well-tested physical laws – they like it because it validates their belief system.

    As with any other irrational or received belief system, the anti-vaccinistas cannot support their beliefs with data and so fall back on their received “wisdom” – their dogma – when challenged. And if repeating the dogma with greater volume doesn’t convince their critics to at least be silent, they resort to that favorite tool of authoritarians everywhere (and everywhen): threats of violence.

    The only good news is that the people making these anonymous threats are terrible cowards – they lack even the courage to attack a defenseless child. Why else would they threaten violence first? True terrorists – and this is what these pathetic people aspire to be – use violence first, to establish themselves as a credible threat, and only later bother with threats.

    In a way, I pity them – they are thralls to a dogma they cannot understand and are lashing out in the only way they have left. Like a toothless old dog growling from under the sofa, they are all bark and no bite.

    Prometheus

  123. #123 novalox
    December 6, 2010

    @funny, @augustine

    The stupid, it burns!!!!! It burns mightily!!

    And go skepchick! We all have your back.

  124. #124 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    skepchik:

    I’m not taking my ball and going home just because one member of the opposition threatened to rape and murder me… I mean, who does that?

    Rape and murder? Threatening a 6 month old?
    Could you post that link? Somehow I think you’re being a little overdramatic because of your emotional state.

    Besides, I have ALL the good guys on my side!

    That’s a matter of perspective.

  125. #125 JohnV
    December 6, 2010

    all of a sudden augustine is looking for citations…

  126. #126 Lynxreign
    December 6, 2010

    @126 augustine

    Somehow I think you’re being a little overdramatic because of your emotional state.

    Somehow I think you’re being an asshat because of your repeatedly demonstrated stupidity.

    That’s a matter of perspective.

    Of which you have none, so who the hell cares what you think.

  127. #127 spurge
    December 6, 2010

    @augustine

    “Somehow I think you’re being a little overdramatic because of your emotional state.”

    Somehow I think you are a misogynistic asshole.

  128. #128 Todd W.
    December 6, 2010

    For anyone doubting the broken thermometers bit, this is the comment that was posted on AoA’s Facebook page:

    Valrie Wyatt
    She needs a few broken mercury thermometers in a few key orafaces. Is she a researcher? Has she taken & compared thousands of blood & hair samples and analyzed every detail of them in a sterile environment? Has she read hundreds & hundreds …of research studies on it, including those written before big brother started trying to cover his lower oraface? Fools speak the loudest because somewhere along the way someone told them that if they insisted their stupidity was true someone might believe them, rather than checking facts and research.
    Yesterday at 12:40pm

    One person, Juha, criticized AoA and the attitude of the commenters, to which an AoA editor replied:

    Age of Autism
    It’s gallows humor, Juha. Some parents of vaccine injured kids were vaccine injured themselves and in treatment. During McCarthyism in the US, McCarthy’s sidekick, prosecutor Roy Cohn used homosexuality to blackmail witnesses into naming fr…iends and colleagues as communists. He once said homosexuals shouldn’t be teachers. Then he himself got AIDS. AIDS activists naturally had mixed reactions. Many responded with gallows humor, especially to Cohn’s insistance to the end that he had liver cancer, not AIDS, and his continued denials that he was gay. The AIDS advocates didn’t think AIDS was funny– they thought irony and hypocrisy were.
    In this case, the irony of the anti-advocacy movement is that many of them show serious symptoms of environmental injury themselves. It’s nothing new. Sex workers in California went into tirades after a study came out showing that sex workers tended to be survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Many denied that they were former victims– not because they weren’t former victims but out of concern that the stigma of victimization would damage the mystique of their trade. Their first concern wasn’t how the study might serve to protect future victims of sexual abuse, just what it did to their image. We live in a strange world and sometimes it’s laugh or die. ~A
    18 hours ago

    Interestingly, Juha’s comments seem to have been removed entirely.

  129. #129 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    Rape and murder? Threatening a 6 month old?
    Could you post that link? Somehow I think you’re being a little overdramatic because of your emotional state.”

    HOW COULD ANYONE FROM AGE OF AUTISM POSSIBLY THREATEN SOMEONE WITH RAPE AND MURDER, I MEAN EVERYONE FROM AGE OF AUTISM IS SUCH AN UPSTANDING CITIZEN IT’S NOT AS IF SKEPCHICK WAS CALLED SKANKCHICK AND IT’S CERTAINLY NOT AS IF THE PSA IS SCAREMONGERING AND TRYING TO GET PEOPLE TO ASSOCIATE VACCINES WITH TOXIC WASTE, HEAVENS NO, THAT WOULD BE UNTHINKABLE, I MEAN IT’S NOT AS IF THE PSA DOESN’T MENTION THIOMERSAL/ETHYLMERCURY IS SAFE, NOT TO MENTION HASN’T BEEN USED IN VACCINES FOR YEARS, RIGHT?

    lololol

  130. #130 Anon
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse Anders or skepchick, you said you had serious reservations about whether you were doing the right thing for your family. The question really is, did you do the right thing by future babies/pregnant women. You have to concede that it actually is in the realm of possibility that a scientific study will come along pointing to problems with mercury vaccines and how will you feel then? Precautionary principle, baby!

  131. #131 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    Apparently everyone who has weighed in with judgement has seen the comments? Correct? A skeptic science blogger would never judge without all of the objective data and evidence. Yes they would.

    A citation of these threats of rape, murder, and child abuse shouldn’t be that hard to come up with.

  132. #132 MadGav
    December 6, 2010

    “I’m not taking my ball and going home just because one member of the opposition threatened to rape and murder me… I mean, who does that?”

    I am simply stunned… perhaps that’s shockingly naive of me given the track-record of these anti-vax wingnuts…

    Good work, Elyse… I’m just sorry you’ve had to put up with such foul behaviour. There truly is no beginning to these dip-sticks’ charm or empathy.

  133. #133 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    Sounds like Elyce has a bad case of female hysteria….

  134. #134 augustine
    December 6, 2010

    Sounds like Elyce has a bad case of female hysteria….

    Sounds like someone from the shemale manhaters club is trolling my name.

  135. #135 MadGav
    December 6, 2010

    Augustine:

    You really shouldn’t bandy around ‘diagnoses’ that you don’t understand.

  136. #136 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Anon:

    You have to concede that it actually is in the realm of possibility that a scientific study will come along pointing to problems with mercury vaccines and how will you feel then?

    Oh, good grief! The amount of thimerosal in pediatric vaccines was reduced by over 98% almost ten years ago. Give it a rest, or at least some actual data. In the mean time:

    The science has been done, the link between vaccines and autism does not exist. It is a dead link… “It’s not pinin’! ‘It’s passed on! This link is no more! It has ceased to be! It’s expired and gone to meet its maker! It’s a stiff! Bereft of life, it rests in peace! If you hadn’t nailed it to the perch it’d be pushing up the daisies! Its metabolic processes are now ‘istory! It’s off the twig! It’s kicked the bucket, it’s shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible!! THIS IS AN EX-LINK!! ” (hat-tip to Monty Python and the dead parrot sketch)

  137. #137 Scott
    December 6, 2010

    Anon @4:13:
    It’s in the same realm of possibility that Woody Allen’s “Sleepers” was right- in two hundred years scientists will discover that tobacco is one of the healthiest things for the body- and worth the same amount of consideration.

  138. #138 Travis
    December 6, 2010

    What a complelling argument anon. It is in the realm of possibility that almost any result in science can be overturned. That is not enough to invoke the precautionary principle. The precautionary pricipal can be applied when there is suspicion of a risk and a lack of scientific consensus about the harm caused by the treatment. But that is not the case here. The evidence we have now is clear, these vaccines are not dangerous and on top of that, the concerns some people hold have been tested and found to be unwarranted.

    Using your measure you cannot use anything because some day something you have used might be found to be problematic. Or do you just apply that version of the principle to things you already think are a concern and not for anything else?

  139. #139 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse Anders or skepchick, you said you had serious reservations about whether you were doing the right thing for your family. The question really is, did you do the right thing by future babies/pregnant women. You have to concede that it actually is in the realm of possibility that a scientific study will come along pointing to problems with mercury vaccines and how will you feel then? Precautionary principle, baby!

    How charming. You fail to remove a Skepchick from the field with thinly-veiled threats of violence and disorders upon her children so you move onto trying to shame and provoke uncertainty. What a playbook you anti-vaccinistas have. You only have ‘if’ to work off of because so many studies have replicated the finding that thimerosal has not contributed to the increase in ASDs. It’s your own fault that you choose to ignore them and spin your wheels on ‘what ifs’ to try and intimidate someone who simply doesn’t agree with you. If you can’t disprove our arguments and support your own with solid science and need to resort to such cheap tactics, you don’t have a cogent objective to begin with.

  140. #140 Emily Willingham
    December 6, 2010

    From ferp: “Somehow I think you’re being a little overdramatic because of your emotional state.”

    Great. There goes my keyboard.

    Someone hasn’t been paying attention to their AoA. They rule with the melodrama and emotion over there. JB Handley’s emotions alone runneth their cup right on over.

  141. #141 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    (Emily, ferp was quoting a misogynistic little troll, that many actually have killfiled… but, yeah… it made me roll my eyes)

  142. #142 Travis
    December 6, 2010

    Emily, augie said that, not ferp.

  143. #143 Elyse Anders
    December 6, 2010

    My reservations were about whether I should have gotten involved, whether I should have taken on SafeMinds. And the answer: Yes. I should have.

    I can concede that there is an outside chance that perhaps, maybe, possibly, somehow there could be an unknown and unforeseeable effect of vaccines.

    I can concede that about everything I do in life, not just vaccines.

    But I made a decision to go with the best information currently available. And that information says that vaccines are better and safer than letting diseases run amok. It’s better and safer for society and it’s better and safer for individuals.

    And the rape threat? 11:40am yesterday on the thread with the picture of me holding my daughter: “She needs a few broken mercury thermometers in a few key orafaces.”

    I live in a world where sticking things in people’s “orafaces” (and in people’s orifices)against their will is called “rape”.

    AoA said they’d remove that post… they haven’t.

  144. #144 Joseph
    December 6, 2010

    You have to concede that it actually is in the realm of possibility that a scientific study will come along pointing to problems with mercury vaccines and how will you feel then?

    This would’ve been a reasonable thing to say back in 2004 or so, when the results of the natural experiment (i.e. removal of 98% of thimerosal from pediatric vaccines) were not yet clear.

  145. #145 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    This is from Kim Stagliano defending the tactics of herself and her lackeys:

    I stand behind my words, she is anti-choice and anti-informed consent. She is entitled to offer any and all childcare to her own family. As a liberal myself, I find it ironic that many of the Skeptics claim to be liberal and yet on this one topic, vaccination choice, are as rabid as a vehement prolifer standing outside of a healthcare clinic with arms hooked to others to prevent women from gaining medical information. It’s no different. Feel free to run that back to your dear leaders. KS

    To which I respond here that Kim, you have it so very wrong. The argument from the sceptics isn’t anti-choice, it is anti-misinformation. Hide behind your ‘public disservice messages’ all you like, it makes for a good rallying cry for the less initiated and more ignorant of your group to do so. But make no mistake, you aren’t fooling anyone else and you aren’t going to paint us with the ‘anti-choice’ brush.

    And if you weren’t such a vile coward, I would be happy to post on AoA and tell you directly. The only media ear you have these days is a single, cretinous bint on Fox News and that’s got to chap your collective arses. So knock off the façade of ‘public service’ and start behaving like a decent human being by removing Elyse’s picture with her infant. Otherwise, I guess you just had to outdo your last year’s Thanksgiving debacle that lost you some readership.

  146. #146 Enkidu
    December 6, 2010

    I reported it to FB too. Hopefully they’ll take the photo and all the comments down.

    I can’t believe all the comments about what a “bad” mother Elyse is because of that (hilarious) photo. All the speculation about why her infant is crying (mercury poisoning? colic? purple crying?) as if babies never cry, EVER, unless something truly horrible is happening. My daughter cries when I make her wear a dress – call CPS!

  147. #147 phantomreader42
    December 6, 2010

    iamnothouse @ #7:

    Does Ken Ham say that Richard Dawkins is an unfit father?

    Not that I recall, but he did do this.

    And then there’s that whole “you deserve to be tortured forever and ever and I can’t wait to watch” bit.

  148. #148 Sullivan
    December 6, 2010

    Science Mom,

    Ironic statement by Ms. Stagliano, isn’t it? Consider this–a couple of years ago a group in New Mexico was going to have a free movie/vaccine catch-up event. Unfortunately, the movie starred Jim Carrey, who threw his weight around and had the event canceled.

    The Age of Autism blog–possibly Kim Stagliano herself–put up a blog post bragging about Mr. Carrey’s action.

    Not exactly a “pro choice” moment from AoA.

  149. #149 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    Dear Elyse,

    The first clue as to your “newbie” status in this debate is that you misspelled the word thimerosal. As completely hilarious as that is… there is also some sadness there. You are naive and have not done any real research on this topic and yet you joined in (started your own…) campaign against a group who want people to know that there is MERCURY in their flu shots. Next up, lead particles in your Wheaties. Don’t worry… it’s perfectly safe.

    The second clue as to your “newbie” status is that you seem surprised that people have reacted very negatively to you. Welcome to the debate! This happens from time to time (from BOTH sides). In fact, I joined in… Above, I called you the Skankchick. So sorry. It was a play on your silly Skepchick name. Silliness breeds silliness…

    Now, the most important part of this comment. Since you are a newbie, please be sure to monitor the health of your baby post-vaccination. As much as you claim that people have been so mean and horrible to you (although I think that you are being a bit over-dramatic with the “rape” thing… but I digress), I wish your baby only the best. Please be careful to monitor your baby for *any* reactions post-vaccination. These could include fevers, seizures, and rashes (often occurs after live-virus vaccines). Also, watch for changes in appetite and/or what you may think is some sort of “food allergy” (ie child cannot tolerate a milk based formula or whatever…). These are huge RED FLAGS and should be seen as such. Good luck!

  150. #150 Dedj
    December 6, 2010

    Most people would consider looking people up before trying to assert that they are a newbie.

    Had funny done so, she/he would not have made the basic errors they did in post 151, errors that could have been corrected with a simple search, and which are not as mild as a plain mis-spelling. Seriously lacking in effort and competance there.

    Yet another vaccine skeptic who doesn’t bother to have the common decency to put even minimal effort in.

  151. #151 MadGav
    December 6, 2010

    Wow, Funny, I really don’t think you could’ve been any more patronising there… (I was going to add, ‘even if you’d tried’ but that seemed a little redundant).

    Do you think you could change the record now? After all, you’ve pointed out a typo and you’ve made demonstrably false claims about MERCURY several times already. I appreciate irony as much as the next mad-person, but it’s embarrassing watching someone trying to lecture others when they are so clearly misinformed.

  152. #152 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    “The first clue as to your “newbie” status in this debate is that you misspelled the word thimerosal.”

    Why not take a look at post #35? Hypocrite.

    “You are naive and have not done any real research on this topic and yet you joined in (started your own…) campaign against a group who want people to know that there is MERCURY in their flu shots.”

    Do you even bother to actually read any of the comments people post or do you just like posting bullshit and then re-reading what you wrote?

    Above, I called you the Skankchick. So sorry. It was a play on your silly Skepchick name. Silliness breeds silliness…”

    You know what’s funny, Funny? You aren’t. You’re more of a douche-y fucktard.

    “Since you are a newbie, please be sure to monitor the health of your baby post-vaccination.”

    Come on, Funny. Say what you’re really thinking: “YOU SKANKY BITCH YOU GAVE YOUR KID AUTISM”. We can all tell that’s what you’re implying, so why not be a little more honest about your intentions?

    “(although I think that you are being a bit over-dramatic with the “rape” thing… but I digress)”

    I’d like to see your reaction if you actually were attacked by a crazy person who jammed broken thermometers up your ass. Of course, you’re likely part of the “it’s just a harmless threat” crowd. Real classy.

    “I wish your baby only the best. Please be careful to monitor your baby for *any* reactions post-vaccination.”

    If you’re going to be a dick, try to be a little more subtle about it at least.

  153. #153 Tobinius
    December 6, 2010

    Funny, you clearly are not a newbie in your ways. No, I suspect that you have been a moron and smug prick for a long long time. Good to see you are sticking with the spelling error “fiasco.” Now I think it is time for you to once again rep;eat your nonsense about just wanting people to know the “truth,” while ignoring all of the facts that have debunked each and every ridiculous claim you have made on this thread so far.

  154. #154 phantomreader42
    December 6, 2010

    the unfunny antivax troll @ #67:

    Listen, flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash can due to worries over mercury in the environment. FACT.

    No, that is NOT a FACT, it is a LIE.

    Flu shots cannot be tossed in the trash due to regulations on MEDICAL waste. THAT is the FACT. The same is true for any vaccine, with or without (mostly without) the “mercury” your cult screeches about constantly (but adamantly refuses to learn the first damn thing about). Also true for a wide variety of drugs and supplies, including, under some circumstances band-aids. As well as needles used for injecting drugs, insulin, and even saline solution. That is, salt water. So, tell me, are you going to be screaming that the ocean is a deadly poison created by some vast conspiracy? Are you going to start threatening and slandering anyone who puts a band-aid on a kid’s skinned knee? Or are you just going to keep LYING and hoping no one with a brain comes along to point out what a dishonest asshole you are?

    You’re a delusional fraud without a shred of integrity.

    Now, I don’t think for an insant that you’re even capable of telling the truth or showing a shred of compassion to any human being. But in the astoundingly unlikely event that I’m wrong in that assessment, on the miniscule chance that you actually honesty (HA, as if that word could ever apply to you!) think vaccines are dangerous and want to protect people, you really should take a look at your behavior here. If you lie so blatantly and so transparently, what possible reason could there be for anyone to believe anything you say? If you REALLY want to save children from the horrors you’re hallucinating (not that anyone here is stupid enough to think you actually do), then you need to tell the damn TRUTH. Not babble obvious lies. Because your credibility is dead and rotting, and at this rate you have no hope of ever reviving it. Everyone here knows you are a liar. The more you repeat such blatant, shameless lies, the more people will conclude (correctly) that antivaxers are all frauds who have no idea what they’re talking about and no respect for the people they’re talking to. And if your goal is really to protect children (which we all know it isn’t), that’s no way to go about it.

  155. #155 phantomreader42
    December 6, 2010

    oops, HTML mix-up.

    my broken link from #149

  156. #156 Anon
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse, the problem comes in where you actually persuaded people to not show a PSA discussing mercury-free options, not a PSA about abandoning vaccines. There is such a thing as mercury toxicity. Sometimes I think people get worked up over something (especially likely when they have a new baby) and it would not surprise me if you later have some regret over your role in this. Only time will tell, though. Oh yes and I don’t see anything about murder for you or your baby.

  157. #157 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    @ Sullivan, ah yes and I won’t even give her credit for being forgetful because in her altered state of reality, only those that oppose them could be anti-choice. On a side note, where is Jim Carrey these days to offer his profound pearls of wisdom on the topic of vaccines?

    @ Funny, it is so good of you to post here so that all of the newcomers can witness, first hand, what the rationale and tact an average anti-vaccinista possesses.

  158. #158 drivebyposter
    December 6, 2010

    look who was right all along about funny being a piece of shit! i must be psychic.
    We are all still waiting on all those reliable studies you told us about.
    where are they? the tension is killing me.

  159. #159 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “Why not take a look at post #35? Hypocrite.”

    Not only did I look at it… I posted a response to it. #38, check it out. Dope.

    “Come on, Funny. Say what you’re really thinking: “YOU SKANKY BITCH YOU GAVE YOUR KID AUTISM”. We can all tell that’s what you’re implying, so why not be a little more honest about your intentions?”

    Ah, no, I’m not implying that… Didn’t even know this “Skepchick” person even had a child with autism… So, no I don’t think that she “gave her kid autism”… although it’s possible that vaccines did. (But of course, it’s possible that they didn’t either….Each child/situation is different).

    “‘I’d like to see your reaction if you actually were attacked by a crazy person who jammed broken thermometers up your ass”.

    So, so, so dramatic. Let’s not forget though… broken thermometers along with the mercury in them is perfectly safe… I did find some comedy in Skepchick’s comment about people threatening to hurt her with the “heavy metals” from thermometers. LOL!

    This whole episode is a comedy show. Thank you to Fox News though… hopefully anyone who watched that segment, got an education on mercury being in flu shots.

  160. #160 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    “Elyse, the problem comes in where you actually persuaded people to not show a PSA discussing mercury-free options, not a PSA about abandoning vaccines.”

    Anon – if you actually READ the comments you’d see why this statement is an outright lie. The PSA is not simply “discussing mercury-free options”, and that you would lie so casually about something that is easily proven false makes you either a troll or someone suffering from severe cognitive dissonance

    “There is such a thing as mercury toxicity.”

    And it is a lie to imply that vaccines are toxic or that thiomersal, a mercury salt, is even remotely like inorganic liquid mercury.

    “Sometimes I think people get worked up over something (especially likely when they have a new baby) and it would not surprise me if you later have some regret over your role in this. Only time will tell, though.”

    So basically you’re rehashing the “SHE HAS TITS AND A VAGINA MEANING SHE’S PRONE TO SILLY HYSTERICS” argument as a reason for why she is speaking out against anti-vaxers?

    “Oh yes and I don’t see anything about murder for you or your baby.”

    And it’s fine, because being threatened with being raped with broken glass isn’t really anything to be worried about, right?

    My, what moral citizens the people who support Age of Autism are.

  161. #161 Anon
    December 6, 2010

    From Elyse: “Vaccines are better and safer than letting diseases run amok” = newb. The mercury-free message is a distinct one. You wanted to be a “pro-science hero” but as I said only time will tell what the impact of your actions are. Enjoy the status.

  162. #162 phantomreader42
    December 6, 2010
  163. #163 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    Funny, I find it very telling that you chose to ignore my criticism of “You are naive and have not done any real research on this topic and yet you joined in (started your own…) campaign against a group who want people to know that there is MERCURY in their flu shots”. You’ve also pretty well avoided responding to any refutations of your lies about what the PSA is discussing – it seems you’re more willing to make personal attacks over and over and be a passive aggressive asshole instead of actually deal with facts and evidence.

    You know, I take it back. I do find something funny about you, Funny: the fact that you would think you’re intelligent enough to give medical and parenting advice is truly laughable.

  164. #164 Science Mom
    December 6, 2010

    From Elyse: “Vaccines are better and safer than letting diseases run amok” = newb. The mercury-free message is a distinct one. You wanted to be a “pro-science hero” but as I said only time will tell what the impact of your actions are. Enjoy the status.

    Oh, hello Kimmy. Came over to stick your odious head up out of your hole? I wouldn’t be so smug if I were you.

  165. #165 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    “”Vaccines are better and safer than letting diseases run amok” = newb. The mercury-free message is a distinct one.”

    Oh good, more outright lies. You know, what you say would have a lot more credibility if it weren’t for the fact that we’ve reduced the levels of thiomersal in vaccines by like 98% to the point where it’s negligible (or altogether absent in many vaccines). Worst of all, the video helps scaremonger people into avoiding ALL vaccines (as does the anti-vax group as a whole with their bullshit). Thiomersal simply happens to be the current scapegoat they’re using to propagate their message.

  166. #166 brian
    December 6, 2010

    Influenza vaccination coverage among pregnant women climbed from about 11% during the 2008-2009 influenza to uptake of about 50% (for seasonal influenza and H1N1 vaccines) among pregnant women in the 10 states surveilled in the most recent MMWR.

    Outside of the AoA echo chamber reasonable people are reaching reasonable conclusions: Despite scary images of pools of mercury, the thimerosal-causes-ASD hypothesis is dead.

  167. #167 Lawrence
    December 6, 2010

    Deader than a doornail (never really understood that analogy, but whatever).

    Actually, if you really consider the situation – the antivaxxers are so marginalized right now, that a corporation the size of AMC (not small by any stretch) could be made to reconsider a monetary decision not to run the PSA for a very small group of dedicated individuals.

    If there was really as many antivaxxers as AoA claims, they could have easily droned out this small group of individuals. Instead, reason prevailed – which leads me to believe that we are hopefully seeing the harbinger of the final death throes of the antivax nutjobs.

    When corporations won’t even take your money – you have a real credibility problem.

  168. #168 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Now all we need is STY to present his big relevation.

    Oh, and Funny, I still have not seen the answers to my questions. Were they too difficult? Does not letting you use the research from Mrs. Dan Hollenbeck too restrictive?

    Or is being employed by the CDC, a research university or having developed a vaccine more of a conflict of interest than being litigants in the Autism Omnibus proceedings?

  169. #169 Composer99
    December 6, 2010

    Funny:

    Throwing around ‘newbie’ accusations when you yourself have gotten pwned like a total n00b every time you post here says much about you. Like, say, victim of ‘Dunning-Kruger’.

    You have yet, despite multiple requests, to provide a single piece of credible evidence (garbage like the retracted Hewitson et al or Wakefield et al studies aren’t going to cut it) showing that the form of mercury salt found in (almost no) vaccines in the US pediatric schedule behaves the same, chemically, as elemental mercury, which you surely know is what people without the applicable knowledge will think of when you throw around the term mercury the way you & SafeMinds have been thus far.

    Shorter: you are dishonest and despicable.

    Go and learn some actual science before coming back to play, OK? L2P n00b.

  170. #170 Joseph
    December 6, 2010

    The second clue as to your “newbie” status is that you seem surprised that people have reacted very negatively to you. Welcome to the debate! This happens from time to time (from BOTH sides).

    Right, the reactions from both sides are completely equivalent. One side calls you a conspiracy nut, the other threatens to kill your kids.

  171. #171 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “Right, the reactions from both sides are completely equivalent. One side calls you a conspiracy nut, the other threatens to kill your kids.”

    What are you talking about? Where are the threats to kill your kids? You are being CRAZY. Calm down.

    ps. As if the worst that has been said by the “skeptics” is that we are conspiracy nuts. Get over yourself. I have heard the absolute worst sort of crap out of your mouths/keyboards… Don’t go pretending that you are innocent little things who wouldn’t dare use anything stronger than “conspiracy nut”. Pathetic, Joseph and nice try.

  172. #172 MikeMa
    December 6, 2010

    Lawrence @168,
    Door nails were ‘clinched’ meaning driven through a timber and bent over (for permanence and strength) so as to be unusable or ‘dead’. From The Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins. Not definitive but interesting.

  173. #173 MadGav
    December 6, 2010

    Funny, you *really* need to stop throwing around these accusations (I appreciate you want to try to minimise the unpleasant frothing from the anti-vax cronies, but suggesting that someone should be stabbed with broken thermometers doesn’t sound like a position that any right-thinking person should be supporting).

    I know it’s easy to use words like ‘CRAZY’ and we all know the inherent value of capitalisation when making a serious point… but insulting someone because they take issue with being threatened (not to mention having their child dragged along for the ride) paints you as rather lacking in the milk of human kindness (especially as you then appear to be seeking sympathy because you have heard ‘absolutely the worst kind of crap’ crap that, presumably, is at least as vile and unpleasant as the threats and abuse to which Elyse has been exposed).

    I’m surprised you aren’t more empathetic really…

  174. #174 Emily Willingham
    December 6, 2010

    Re comment 142–oops, my bad. Sorry, ferp. Still need a new keyboard. Thanks, um, Augie.

  175. #175 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    Meh, no biggie Emily.

  176. #176 brian
    December 6, 2010

    Door nails were ‘clinched’ meaning driven through a timber and bent over (for permanence and strength) so as to be unusable or ‘dead’.

    So, rather than having “clinched” the argument, the proponents of the “thimerosal-containing vaccines caused an ‘epidemic’ of ASD” find that their argument has been ‘clinched’–as in it’s unusable or dead.

    Yes, that sounds about right, especially since a new study shows that ASD continued to increase in Quebec years after exposure to thimerosal was dramatically reduced: “Discontinuation of thimerosal use in vaccines did not modify the risk of PDD.” [Can J Psychiatry. 2010 Nov;55(11):715-20] This follows similar reports from California, Sweden, and Denmark, and barely precedes an as-yet-unpublished study that shows that in Finland autism was more common in the 1996-1999 birth cohort than it was before thimerosal use in pediatric vaccines was banned in 1992. How many times do you have to hammer the nail before AoA types will realize that it’s been well and truly hammered?

    I suppose you do have to keep hammering, though, for it’s hard to get through to people who think like this: ‘My first child was vaccinated and has ASD; my second child was vaccinated and has ASD; my third child was unvaccinated and has ASD: therefore, ASD is caused by vaccines (and it’s not genetic).’

  177. #177 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Funny:

    I have heard the absolute worst sort of crap out of your mouths/keyboards…

    If you want to be pedantic about it: you “hear” stuff out of our mouths?

    Anyway, so you consider us asking for evidence from you to be “crap.” Nice.

  178. #178 Anon
    December 6, 2010

    Elyse, in light of your son having delays, you may want to look up some information on something called ” reaction formation.” Come to think of it there may be a few of you that need to consider this possibility.

  179. #179 phantomreader42
    December 6, 2010

    Anon, why should anyone believe a word you say, since your cult is filled with pathological liars?

  180. #180 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    Anon, why do anti-vaxxers like you and Funny continually jump from topic to topic without actually addressing any of the rebuttals made at your points (like your claim that we “have to concede that it actually is in the realm of possibility that a scientific study will come along pointing to problems with mercury vaccines”)?

    When you guys keep claiming we’re “CRAZY” when we’re the ones who continuously back up our statements with evidence, you’re doing a lot of psychological projection.

  181. #181 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    “Anyway, so you consider us asking for evidence from you to be “crap.” Nice”.

    Sigh. That isn’t the “crap”. You guys have made fun of, have called names, have made inappropriate remarks, etc,etc… over the course of weeks, months, years…. Now, you want to pretend that you are the poor innocents who are getting your feelings hurt. Cry me a river.

    The only evidence that is really necessary is that mercury is a neurotoxin. It shouldn’t be injected into humans. What’s really so hard to understand there, genius?

    ps. Having said that, I posted evidence. You don’t accept it. Whatever…

  182. #182 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    “You guys have made fun of, have called names, have made inappropriate remarks, etc,etc… over the course of weeks, months, years…. Now, you want to pretend that you are the poor innocents who are getting your feelings hurt. Cry me a river.”

    “It is a beautiful thing that this was on Fox though… Yay! I guess I should thank the skankchick. Although the next time Skanky wishes to blog about thimerosal perhaps she should have the sense enough to learn how to friggin’ spell it!!!!!”

    Childish name calling instead of actually backing up your claims. Typical of you, hypocrite.

    The only evidence that is really necessary is that mercury is a neurotoxin. What’s really so hard to understand there, genius?

    And here we go for the millionth fucking time of another equivocation fallacy by an anti-vaxxer claiming that thiomersal is chemically the same as elemental mercury (which was shown in the PSA).

    Of course, you’re either illiterate or lazy, so you haven’t read the million rebuttals to this claim that’s been made multiple times in this thread alone.

    “Having said that, I posted evidence.”

    Really? In which post? Out of all your posts, only #100 makes a passing remark to a few studies (and doesn’t even properly cite their names), and promptly moved on to a different topic with your “That being said… does it really matter?” in the next sentence. Also, both of the ‘studies’ you’ve mentioned have already had their contents rebutted by people whom you’ve totally failed to respond to. Citing studies also requires backing them up, not mentioning a study in passing then refusing to respond to any criticisms made as you’ve done.

    Seriously, do you not even know how basic science works?

  183. #183 novalox
    December 6, 2010

    @funny

    Considering that the “evidence” that you posted isn’t valid at all nor does it point to any link to autism, you really shouldn’t be talking crap like that.

    You STILL haven’t posted a credible response to Chris’ question. You do not get basic chemistry (mercury does not equal methylmercury or ethylmercury), biology (clearance rates of methylmercury and ethylmercury), basic logic (even with thiomeserol being phased out of most vaccines, autism rates are still constant), the scientific method, rules and regulations, or basic decency (those ad hominem attacks against skepchick really show your character).

    Besides, I get a laugh at your pathetic attempts at mockery.

    We all still await an answer to Chris’ question (a peer-reviewed report from a major journal supporting you r view), but I think we’ll be waiting a while from you for a (at least) semi-coherent answer….

  184. #184 Chris
    December 6, 2010

    Funny, you keep making claims, but you have not backed up. The “evidence” you produced was minor and not exactly pertinent to your point. Especially one produced by a litigant in the Autism Omnibus proceedings that proposed that it is normal for infant primate brains to shrink!

    Suffice it say, I would say you and Anon have some serious reading comprehension problems. You claim thimerosal is a neurotoxin, yet don’t realize the same can be said for water. It is all in the dose, and the science I actually cited shows that at the levels that used to be used there was no casual association with autism.

  185. #185 Funny
    December 6, 2010

    Neurotoxins (such as mercury) injected into babies and pregnant women = BAD.

    If you have a problem with that, get your head examined. End of discussion.

  186. #186 ferp
    December 6, 2010

    “Neurotoxins (such as mercury) injected into babies and pregnant women = BAD.”

    What fantastic argumentation skills you’ve displayed. When reality disagrees with your argument, simply oversimplify and restate your argument!

  187. #187 Dedj
    December 6, 2010

    “If you have a problem with that, get your head examined. End of discussion.”

    So, basically you want to marginalise and delegitimise any discussion of an opposing viewpoint?

    What’s the problem with a discussion about a mercury containing flu shot? Why are you so upset about the discussion?? Makes no sense. Why would you complain about a discussion suggesting that people properly evaluate mercury containing vaccines?

    Why are you afraid of an honest discussion? Why do you use underhanded marginalisation tactics in place of actual discussion?

  188. #188 novalox
    December 6, 2010

    @189

    Because he doesn’t have any facts to back him up, funny has to rely on ad hominem attacks, oversimplification, and outright tantrums in order to get his way.

    In this case, it makes him look like an idiot.

    But it is still worth a good laugh to see him look like a fool…

  189. #189 Liz Ditz
    December 6, 2010

    There is a new facebook post from Age of Autism. And no, Funny and Augustine I won’t link to it. Use your research skills, I’ve given you all the clues you need.

    Age of Autism My (imaginary) phone conversation with Liberty Mutual, global insurer:

    LM: Hello, how may I assist you?

    Me: Hi, I’m eight months pregnant (not really) and my doc wants to give me a full mercury flu shot. Do you insure for autism?

    The prompt is a blog post by , Liberty Mutual’s Responsibility Project

  190. #190 daedalus2u
    December 6, 2010

    If injecting neurotoxins = BAD, why do so many of the celebrities supporting AoA use botox? You do know that botox is a neurotoxin many times more toxic than mercury.

    The LD50 in monkeys is about 50 ng. The amount of mercury in a vaccination is about 12 micrograms. 12 micrograms of botox would kill dozens of people.

    Next time you see Jenny McCarthy, ask her why she injects a neurotoxin that is hundreds of times more toxic than mercury?

  191. #191 novalox
    December 6, 2010

    @191

    And once again, we get to see a complete post of idiocy from aoa.

    I shouldn’t be surprised by now, seeing the new lows that they can reach, but I guess I have a morbid curiosity on how much one can rely on insinuation, ad hominem attacks, illogical reasoning, and outright idiocy a group can use to push a mistaken message….

  192. #192 Todd W.
    December 6, 2010

    Newsflash! AoA removed the broken thermometer comment…about 7-8 hours after they said they would. I got a screen shot of it for posterity, though, before it went down the memory hole.

  193. #193 Liz Ditz
    December 6, 2010

    Dear Mr / Mrs / Ms Funny,

    24 hours ago, I asked you two pretty simple questions requiring no research at all, really.

    You haven’t responded. Are you planning to respond, or should I assume you don’t know the answers?

  194. #194 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    “The prompt is a blog post by , Liberty Mutual’s Responsibility Project”

    Some of the posts on that blog are infuriatingly selfish, not to mention totally unjustified.

    June 22, 2010 by yeah right

    Yeah right, Im not going to let my child be a lab rat, to save your life… thats ridiculous. I have to protect my child , not the public.

    August 29, 2010 by Maurine Meleck

    we have no moral obligation to protect anyone but ourselves and our own children.

    Not only do these people think vaccines are the cause of all the world’s ills, but they don’t understand how vital herd immunity is for a species… not to mention individuals who can’t protect themselves with vaccines (the very young, etc). Misinformation kills, even if it’s indirect.

  195. #195 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    daedalus2u:

    If injecting neurotoxins = BAD, why do so many of the celebrities supporting AoA use botox? You do know that botox is a neurotoxin many times more toxic than mercury.

    Botox is also injected into children with cerebral palsy, plus it is injected in the scalp area of persons with migraines. I am sure Funny is protesting that also.

    Perhaps as much as he/she protests injecting foreign stem cells into children, chemical castration, or industrial chelators. Well?

    Oh, wait… they aren’t mercury.

  196. #196 Travis
    December 7, 2010

    That is a good point Chris. Similar to what I pointed out earlier, that the standards we keep hearing from these people only seem to apply to their hobby horse. They never seem to consistently apply them. It is almost like they are just willing to grasp onto anything that they think might be useful in an argument…

  197. #197 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    How dare you attack Boyd Haley! He would never, ever sell something that was developed as an industrial chemical used to treat mining wastewater under the guise of a ‘dietary supplement. And even if he did, it’d certainly never ever have been pulled from the shelves by the FDA over safety concerns because he would know better than to market a potentially dangerous chemical as a diet supplement in an attempt to get rich quick.

    After all, he has a PhD, and nobody with a PhD ever does anything morally reprehensible or disgustingly unethical… right?

  198. #198 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    Travis:

    Similar to what I pointed out earlier, that the standards we keep hearing from these people only seem to apply to their hobby horse. They never seem to consistently apply them.

    Like screaming conflict of interest or pharma shill at research by Paul Offit, and most other legitimate researchers (like most of the Danish science community), but ignoring the self serving interests of the Geiers, Boyd Haley, Wakefield… and Hewiston.

  199. #199 MadGav
    December 7, 2010

    Funny:

    “Neurotoxins (such as mercury) injected into babies and pregnant women = BAD.

    If you have a problem with that, get your head examined. End of discussion.”

    You really do seem determined to attach psychiatric labels to people you disagree with… and, as I may have mentioned already, you really need to stop doing that (not least because it’s a vapid argument, but more importantly because the science side of the debate clearly doesn’t have the monopoly on ‘crazy’).

    The corollary to your simplistic statement above is that: promoting an agenda which will result in babies and pregnant mothers being at increased risk of infection with potentially life-threatening disease (especially disease that is know to have neurological sequelae) is BAD.

    The difference between your statement and mine is that all the evidence supports my ascertion that flu, measles, rubella, mumps, tetanus… etc etc are serious (and limitable) diseases… whereas, there is not one shred of reliable or externally verifiable evidence to suggest that ethyl-mercury causes harm.

  200. #200 Funny
    December 7, 2010

    Hello, I’m an unpleasant twat who likes to call women and female scientists “skank” if they disagree with me, and thinks it’s fine to threaten to rape pro-vax women with “broken thermometers of mercury” since I am under the mind bendingly stupid impression that they believe mercury is harmless.

  201. #201 Scott
    December 7, 2010

    Neurotoxins (such as mercury) injected into babies and pregnant women = BAD.

    If you have a problem with that, get your head examined. End of discussion.

    I presume then that all these other things also “= BAD”?

    – Drinking water
    – Eating fish
    – Breathing
    – Eating a banana
    – Drinking milk
    – Smelling flowers

    After all, those all introduce substances into your body that are toxic at sufficient doses.

    Of course, anyone with even a basic layperson’s understanding of toxicology will recognize that the DOSE is crucial, and for that reason all of these activities are in fact safe because the doses are far too small to cause harm.

    PRECISELY as with thimerosal in vaccines.

  202. #202 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    “Hello, I’m an unpleasant twat who likes to call women and female scientists “skank” if they disagree with me, and thinks it’s fine to threaten to rape pro-vax women with “broken thermometers of mercury” since I am under the mind bendingly stupid impression that they believe mercury is harmless.”

    Is misogynism a turn-on for you, too? <3 <3 <3

  203. #203 Raging Bee
    December 7, 2010

    [Never]Funny: my comment #81 is only one of a HUGE number of comments correcting your blatant misunderstanding of basic principles of chemistry. Since you have ignored all of that information, and continue to repeat the same basic mistake — a mistake even high-school kids know to avoid — I am forced to conclude that you have made yourself uneducable by choice. And since you’re not paying attention to the substance of what we say, there’s no reason for us to pay any more attention to you than we would to a flat-earther. Oh well, thanks for ginning up the pageviews and helping Orac get more attention for this important message. You can go back to bed now.

    On a related note, what really stands out about the antivax trolls is not just their ignorance and emotional self-righteousness, it’s their unrelenting babyish nastiness, much of which has no visible connection to the medical issues being discussed. Seriously, when was the last time augie or Sid Offit actually said anything even remotely related to the original topic of a thread, let alone informed and useful? These people don’t give a shit about the medical issues AT ALL; they’re just here to insult people and bite ankles like junior-high trailer-trash. It seems to be all they know.

  204. #204 Funny
    December 7, 2010

    “You haven’t responded. Are you planning to respond, or should I assume you don’t know the answers?”

    Dearest Liz,

    I assume that you mean this question/s?

    “Since you are so “well versed in the topic”, Funny, can you tell me how big a 25.0 mcg drop of thimerosal would be? Imagine thimerosal was bright red, and you put a 25.0 mcg drop on a piece of white plastic — would you be able to see it with the naked eye? How big is a 25.0 mcg drop compared to say, a poppy seed?”

    How about if I ask you a question first and when I get your answer, then I will respond to yours… If you don’t mind, of course. So Liz, how much lead would you consider safe to inject into your baby? If lead was bright red and you mixed it with other substances, would you be ok with injecting it into your newborn as long as you couldn’t see any “red” left, of course?

  205. #205 MadGav
    December 7, 2010

    That’s a varient of the ‘that’s a very good question… now let me ask you a question’ gambit isn’t it, Funny?

  206. #206 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    “How about if I ask you a question first and when I get your answer, then I will respond to yours… If you don’t mind, of course. So Liz, how much lead would you consider safe to inject into your baby? If lead was bright red and you mixed it with other substances, would you be ok with injecting it into your newborn as long as you couldn’t see any “red” left, of course?”

    Equivocating that injecting thiomersal = injecting elemental mercury/lead/dead kittens into babies… This is like the 100th time you’ve used this as an ‘argument’. Be honest – are you just resorting to logical fallacies because you don’t know the answer to any of the questions people have asked you?

  207. #207 MadGav
    December 7, 2010

    Funny, that’s a varient of the ‘that’s a very good question… now let me ask *you* a question’ gambit isn’t it?

  208. #208 JohnV
    December 7, 2010

    To be fair ferp, funny probably doesn’t understand what a logical fallacy is :p

  209. #209 Liz Ditz
    December 7, 2010

    Thank you, MadGav and ferp, for writing have said what I have to say to Funny. He / she still hasn’t answered the question, and still displays a complete ignorance of toxicology.

    Latest two comments from Age of Autism at the FB page, at about 5:20 am mountain standard time.

    Age of Autism Stopping Americans unable to understand? What is she St. Skepchick? She interefered with medical choice and commerce. That’s her right to make the attempt. We dis not use her name. We pulled her public photo that she used here on FB. We ran it on FB, not the main site – our readers deserved to know who was behind (at the outer level anyway) the AMC campaign to stop the ads. We provide news. This was news.

    Age of Autism And Jake Crosby is our contributing editor. We use our real names, we don’t hide behind old BBC characters and cute avatars.

    Nice work! “Our readers deserve to know” — I guess they don’t have the skills to find out for themselves.

    Also, as Orac mentioned and I pointed out– Elyse was just the last link in the chain. The difference is that there was a call to action that was easy to do — just go to a link and click. Maybe it is slactivism, but it worked.

  210. #210 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    ferp:

    Be honest – are you just resorting to logical fallacies because you don’t know the answer to any of the questions people have asked you?

    Or if he/she actually let new information into her/his welded shut mind it might cause an aneurysm. He/she is like a robot that can only output what has been programmed, and there is no memory left to update the data.

    There seems to be trend to repeat the talking points, and then completely ignore the facts that go show that they are wrong. Notice there is no comment on the use of botox, OSR, Lupron or stem cells that are promoted on AoA, because that is not allowed. Absolutely no acknowledgment of Hewitson’s conflict of interest, because that is not allowed.

    And then one my favorite bit is the claim that the level of mercury in vaccines was the same in 2005 as it was in 1999! But if I point out that one of their queens, Sallie Bernard, was unable to procure DTaP vaccines with thimerosal in 2001 (and provide the link: http://onibasu.com/archives/am/27456.html … I noticed that if put links an “a href=” tag they completely miss it) it is totally ignored. They don’t seem to comprehend that if vaccines were full of mercury of 2005 (their fact), that it should not have been a problem getting one in 2001.

    Funny has turned into a clueless troll bot. I am going to ignore her.

  211. #211 Composer99
    December 7, 2010

    ferp wins the thread for #198. Thought you all ought to know. :)

  212. #212 Kristen
    December 7, 2010

    Karen Harker says (on AoA):

    people like this deserve to know what its like to have a child with autism!!! I would never wish autism on anyone but she needs to spend a few hours with my son to see what we all go through before she is all pro vaccine!!! GET A FREAKING CLUE!!!!

    Then Kim Stagliano replies:

    I wouldn’t trust my girls in her care for 5 seconds. I’d leave them with wolves first. :) K

    Funny (word, not inane commentator), I wouldn’t let Kim and her ilk near my son and daughter. She would, no doubt think they needed to have industrial chelators added to their breakfast, as well as submit to a plethora of other unproven and dangerous “therapies” designed to “recover” them (the thought that autistic children need to be recovered, like they don’t currently exist is disgusting).

    The very fact that they posted a picture of Elyse with her baby is implicitly threatening. The overtly threatening comments are just icing on the shit-cake that is AoA’s response to this matter.

    I think Elyse’s reaction to this has been level-headed especially compared to the words I woud have for these people if they were mentioning my children in their hate-filled bile.

  213. #213 Kristen
    December 7, 2010

    Just wanted to clarify my comment above: I have four children, I wouldn’t let her around the two without special needs either.

  214. #214 mikerattlesnake
    December 7, 2010

    Funny: “You must be new to the discussion if you don’t think that fire is bad and you can’t see that just by virtue of it’s destructive nature it’s bad. Maybe once you’ve contemplate the issue a bit, you will understand the badness of fire.”

    RI poster: “but fire is useful and safe when handled properly and cautiously. Can you point to some evidence that supports your claim that all fire is bad under all conditions? Just show us the evidence.”

    Funny: “FIRE BAD! FIIIIIIIRE BAAAAAAAAAAAD!”

  215. #215 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    Funny’s argument is more like “flamethrowers can hurt people, which means fire is bad and therefore you shouldn’t have a furnace in your house”. His constant whining of “VACCINES HAVE THIOMERSAL AND MERCURY IS BAD SO YOU’RE ALL CRAZY” is literally a case of comparing apples to oranges.

  216. #216 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    Do you think Funny would be freaked out by this: http://dhmo.org/ ?

  217. #217 Joseph
    December 7, 2010

    I’m willing to bet that Funny is not aware that his family is exposed to lead all the time.

  218. #218 Drivebyposter
    December 7, 2010

    I’m willing to bet that Funny is not aware that his family is exposed to lead all the time.

    I’d be willing to bet Funny has been exposed to high levels of lead his entire life.

  219. #219 Antaeus Feldspar
    December 8, 2010

    SBM is not science! If it were it would be called scientific medicine. Not science BASED medicine. But what’s in a name anyways?

    If this is truly the way that Boring Auger thinks the world works, it’s no longer any mystery why he’s so muddled in his thinking. He believes his best guide to reality is reality TV, because it’s got “reality” in the name.

  220. #220 Cranberry Theophilus
    December 9, 2010

    Itching to drop some AoA dox with 4ch, may learn some manners from anon.

  221. #221 BobbyEarle
    December 10, 2010

    @222

    Rules #1 and #2, /b/ro

  222. #222 augustine
    December 10, 2010

    Anteus Feldspar

    If this is truly the way that Boring Auger thinks the world works, it’s no longer any mystery why he’s so muddled in his thinking. He believes his best guide to reality is reality TV, because it’s got “reality” in the name.

    Actually its quite the opposite. SBMers believe Science Based Medicine is science because it has “science” in it’s name. It looks like you’re the one who is muddled in thinking.

  223. #223 Antaeus Feldspar
    December 12, 2010
    If this is truly the way that Boring Auger thinks the world works, it’s no longer any mystery why he’s so muddled in his thinking. He believes his best guide to reality is reality TV, because it’s got “reality” in the name.

    Actually its quite the opposite. SBMers believe Science Based Medicine is science because it has “science” in it’s name.

    Wow, that’s just a devastating comeback, one that in no way equates to a simple boring “No, I’m not, you are!” Because, after all, it was SBM’ers and not Boring Auger who at comment #107 attempted to declare the content of something based solely on its name and expected that weak argument not to be horselaughed out of the room by anyone over the age of six.

    Oh wait.

    (What happened to the good old days when Boring Auger at least rose up to the low standards of a Goofus? Its arguments used to be mildly interesting, if trivially easy, to refute – now it’s sad to watch it flail around …)

  224. #224 Cerise
    December 12, 2010

    Augustine, science based medicine is medicine based on science. It is scientific. Just think about that, let it sink in, hopefully you’ll be able to grasp the scientific basis of science based medicine. You may need a dictionary.

  225. #225 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    December 12, 2010

    “Augustine, science based medicine is medicine based on science. It is scientific. Just think about that, let it sink in, hopefully you’ll be able to grasp the scientific basis of science based medicine. You may need a dictionary.”

    Cerise, that one couldn’t grasp anything… not even straws!

  226. #226 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    December 12, 2010

    Funny (who/whatever that one is) is a total twammock.

    “The only evidence that is really necessary is that mercury is a neurotoxin. It shouldn’t be injected into humans. What’s really so hard to understand there, genius?”

    Mercury is indeed a neurotoxin… in its elemental form! And on a dose-dependent basis. The amount that gets used in a vaccination does not constitute such a dose that it would cause any damage. Why don’t you understand that, twammock?

    “Neurotoxins (such as mercury) injected into babies and pregnant women = BAD.

    If you have a problem with that, get your head examined. End of discussion.”

    How much of a twammock are you??? I mean – really!!!

  227. #227 canalon
    December 15, 2010

    ‘Funny’ are you using salt when you cook? Because according to your logic it should be bad. Indeed cyanide is BAD. yet it is often used as an a food additive in salt and nobody seems to complain. So the form of the salt might be important. For mercury just as well as for cyanide.

  228. #228 Chris
    December 15, 2010

    Be careful, canalon, Funny may be of the bunch who think laetrile is a vitamin and drinking colloidal silver is better than antibiotics.

  229. #229 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    December 16, 2010

    canalon, what you note about salt is accurate but you could go further. Common salt is sodium chloride, a compound of sodium and chlorine (I mention this for the sake of the twammock to whom I have referred earlier… because said person seems to need it all spoon-fed). Sodium is a highly reactive metal and is toxic. Chlorine is a highly reactive gas, and it is also toxic. Together they form a compound that can – in small enough doses – be safely sprinkled on fish and chips. Even with the cyanide in it. And common salt is also usually iodised, which means that iodine is added: yet another element that is toxic in high enough doses.

    So I can only imagine that the twammock will not dare eat anything with salt in it. Because there are at least four toxic chemical elements in it. The rest of us, of course, recognise dose-dependency as being crucial in understanding how chemicals can be toxic. So we can continue to use common salt in our food, safe in the knowledge that we won’t die of anything salt-related (provided that we don’t put a kilogramme of salt on our fish and chips).

  230. #230 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    December 16, 2010

    canalon, what you note about salt is accurate but you could go further. Common salt is sodium chloride, a compound of sodium and chlorine (I mention this for the sake of the twammock to whom I have referred earlier… because said person seems to need it all spoon-fed). Sodium is a highly reactive metal and is toxic. Chlorine is a highly reactive gas, and it is also toxic. Together they form a compound that can – in small enough doses – be safely sprinkled on fish and chips. Even with the cyanide in it. And common salt is also usually iodised, which means that iodine is added: yet another element that is toxic in high enough doses.

    So I can only imagine that the twammock will not dare eat anything with salt in it. Because there are at least four toxic chemical elements in it. The rest of us, of course, recognise dose-dependency as being crucial in understanding how chemicals can be toxic. So we can continue to use common salt in our food, safe in the knowledge that we won’t die of anything salt-related (provided that we don’t put a kilogramme of salt on our fish and chips).

  231. #231 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    December 16, 2010

    Orac, both attempts to post went through … please delete one of them, and this message also….

    Thank you…

  232. #232 canalon
    December 16, 2010

    Funny your question is:
    ‘So Liz, how much lead would you consider safe to inject into your baby? If lead was bright red and you mixed it with other substances, would you be ok with injecting it into your newborn as long as you couldn’t see any “red” left, of course?’
    Just like mercury is mixed with other substances if lead was mixed with EDTA (that would be equivalent to using ethylmercury or ferrocyanide) I would not see massive problems if 25µg of that ended up for a valid reason injected into my daughter, or me.
    So now that this has been answered, will you provide any valid references proving toxicity of thiomersal?

  233. #233 Disgusted
    February 4, 2011

    You people talk about others as being “insulting.” I suggest you take a look at ANY pro-vaccine blog and take note of the vitriol directed at anyone who dares to QUESTION the safety of vaccines. And you consider yourselves “skeptics”? And science-oriented? I think that’s incredibly ironic. When I was studying Physics in college I learned that QUESTIONING is the essence of the scientific process, and that a lot of what gets accepted in the science world as “fact” is proven to be utterly false when someone DARES to challenge the status quo. Well, being insulting and denigrating to people who do not agree with you will certainly get them on your side, and will ’cause other reasonable people who believe in the right to question to run in the other direction as well.

  234. #234 Gray Falcon
    February 4, 2011

    Interesting that you don’t provide any examples, Disgusted. Also, those who question the status quo usually provide good reason for questioning it, vague correlations that don’t pan out in the long term don’t count.

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