Respectful Insolence

Calling all Boston area skeptics! Calling all Boston area skeptics! The Bat Signal is up!

Your fair city is being invaded by the man who, arguably more than anyone else, sparked the latest incarnation of the anti-vaccine movement, is about to metastasize to your fair city (well, to its suburb of Waltham) and speak at one of your universities, specifically Brandeis University. That’s right, Andrew Wakefield is invading your town, apparently invited by that one trick pony of a blogger for the anti-vaccine crank blog Age of Autism, namely Jake Crosby:

Struck off the UK’s medical register after writing a paper on the patient reports of 12 children with severe bowel disease and neurological disorders – 8 of whom developed autism shortly after their MMR vaccines – Dr. Andrew Wakefield now lives in the U.S. He is at the center of the vaccine/autism controversy, along with two of the most respected pediatric gastroenterologists in the UK.

Learn about the pressure on the Lancet to retract their paper. Discover the connections between the MMR vaccine makers, the Lancet, the panel that struck Dr. Wakefield off, and the British journalist that called him a fraud. Hear the side of the story the national media won’t tell you. Find out why Dr. Wakefield and others have been made examples of, and the chilling effect this has had on doctors and scientists who dare to do research that calls vaccine safety into question.

I wonder if the powers that be at Brandeis are happy to see such a fallacy-laden blurb to advertise a talk on the Brandeis campus by a man who has consistently been such a major threat to public health through his promotion of highly dubious “science” designed to cast false doubts on the safety of the MMR vaccine and blame it for causing autism when there is no good evidence that it does. Great way to boost the reputation of the university, to allow an event hosted by the anti-vaccine crank blog Age of Autism, which is furiously pimping Wakefield’s appearance, which will occur on Wednesday, April 13, from 7:30 PM to 9 PM at the Rapaporte Treasure Hall.

You know what I’d like to see?

I’d like to see a bunch of skeptics show up, politely listen to Andrew Wakefield’s talk, and then during the questions and answers session ask him the hard questions. You have to be ready, though. Andy is slimy and slick; he can ooze his way through questions by the unwary. If you’re going to do this, you need to know your stuff. For instance, you can be sure that Wakefield will try to claim that his dubious studies have been replicated.

They have not. All of the alleged “replications” are either not replications at all or were carried out by autism biomeddlers closely associated with Wakefield. If he brings up his “monkey studies,” you can always be ready, thanks to my analyses:

This is not a job for the faint-hearted. No doubt there will be a number of die-hard anti-vaccine activists and true believers, and certainly Jake Crosby will be there. That’s why I’d love to see a discussion here of what sorts of claims Wakefield is likely to make and links to resources to refute those claims.

And then spread the warning.

Comments

  1. #1 brian
    April 12, 2011

    Wakefield wrote this: “[T]he widespread use of MMR immunization is a major determinant of the apparent (now substantiated) increase in rates of autism.” [Pediatrics 2001; 107; e84]

    Ardent anti-vaxxers Olmsted and Blaxill, though, ‘fessed up to this: “In the United Kingdom, SmithKline Beecham’s MMR formulation was introduced in 1989 just at the point when autism rates began their sharp rise. But in the United States, pointing the finger at MMR was always far less satisfying. Merck’s M-M-R II was introduced in 1979, well before American autism rates began to rise, so it was hard to argue that MMR exposures could have triggered an autism epidemic in country.” [The Age of Autism, p 291]

  2. #2 augustine
    April 12, 2011

    Your fair city is being invaded..

    City Being invaded? Sounds more like military propaganda terms than science terms. Sounds like cult terminology. Time for some campaign funding.

    I wonder if the powers that be at Brandeis are happy to see …

    No, they’ve probably never heard of Dr. Wakefield. Who has?

    I’d like to see a bunch of skeptics show up…

    Of course you would.

    you have to be ready, though. Andy is slimy and slick; he can ooze his way through questions by the unwary.

    You have to be a really good scientism based cultists. Because he’ll throw your “science” and your lack of science back in your face making you look like the fools that you really are. Be careful because what I really want you to do is make a PR war. So you have to really LOOK good. Only I can pull it off so you have to copy what I’ve ALREADY said previously. Here are the links. Don’t make me look like a fool and don’t embarrass yourself, which undoubtedly you’ll do because you’re not me.

    We’ve got to really pull this off. We’ve go to make “them” think we ARE science. Wear some NASA suits or Star Trek outfits if you have to.

    P.s Give me a plug also. Tell ‘em you’re from scienceblogs.

  3. #3 lilady
    April 12, 2011

    It would be nice if some educated people show up there to provide some “push-back” to Andy. He’s still using “Doctor” before his name, in spite of being struck from the British Medical Society. He’s got no more credentials that Augie.

    Good for the educated Somalians in Minneapolis who are getting the word out about this scam artist.

  4. #4 augustine
    April 12, 2011

    Lilady

    He’s got no more credentials that Augie.He’s got no more credentials that Augie.

    He’s an M.D. You are a 4 year degree nurse from the stone ages. You’re retired. Get over it. That’s the facts. Nothing you say changes that.

    You’re better off quoting the CDC pink book. At least you sound “scientific” when you do.

  5. #5 Narad
    April 12, 2011

    Wear some NASA suits or Star Trek outfits if you have to.

    Beats shouting at your hand while wearing half of a Tron getup and gartered dress socks, I suppose.

  6. #6 TylerD
    April 12, 2011

    With how the Red Sox are doing right now, we can’t afford for things to get worse for this city.

  7. #7 lilady
    April 12, 2011

    He’s a disgraced fraud who was finally struck from the rolls of the British Medical Society. Augie, once people sit for their boards and are licensed, they don’t ever lose them…unless they skew their lab results and publish them as fact or they have financial conflicts of interest that they lie about…you, know generally ethically backrupt. I actually have my license to practice, because I have ethics.

    Why not try your hand at college Augie, McDonald’s plans to hire 50,000 workers and you could always matriculate into Hamburger U. You might even make more money than your monthly on-the-dole check from the government.

  8. #8 augustine
    April 12, 2011

    I actually have my license to practice, because I have ethics.

    How many did you kill because of indiscriminate vaccine practices?

    Oh you don’t keep up with those type of numbers do you? Confirmation bias you know?

    “I saved more than I killed”, therefore I’m a good person , right?

  9. #9 novalox
    April 12, 2011

    @augie

    Another typical ad hominem from the hypocrite. How boring.

    And you still haven’t answered the question on your schooling.

  10. #10 augustine
    April 12, 2011

    That’s why it’s called “clinical”. If you were actually aware of your murderous ways it would affect you psychologically. Confirmation bias is a way to protect your psyche.

    How many oncologist do you think admit to themselves that their actual treatments kill their patients? They know the practice of oncology kills and tortures. It’s the nature of the business. But how many will actually admit that they themselves have killed? If they want to continue practicing their trade then they have to develop a coping mechanism. Unless they’re inhuman.

    How many vaccine administrators have admitted to killing people for giving the “o’ so necessary” vaccines?

    Do you deny that vaccines kill some people?

  11. #11 Pieter B
    April 12, 2011

    augie, he has an MD, that’s true. If, however, he attempts to practice medicine, he will be breaking th law, as he is not licensed as a physician anywhere in the civilized world.

  12. #12 autiemum
    April 12, 2011

    “He is at the center of the vaccine/autism controversy, along with two of the most respected pediatric gastroenterologists in the UK.”

    This bit from the press release is brilliantly deceptive. It gives the impression that “two of the most respected gastroenterolgists in the Uk” agree with Wakefield. In fact they both completely disagree with his claims about the MMR.
    One has been struck off for failing to properly supervise Wakefield’s research and thus allowing the deception and the unethical experiments on children. The other was reprieved because he stopped one of the unethical tests (because he recognised that it was unnecessay and wrong)
    The controversy which Wakefield is at the centre of is of his own invention and has to be kept alive with deceit like this.

  13. #13 Narad
    April 12, 2011

    If you were actually aware of your murderous ways it would affect you psychologically.

    I don’t recall your responding to my question of what you mean by “ego,” Augustine.

  14. #14 Baron Scarpia
    April 12, 2011

    Oh, spare me.

    Do you deny that vaccines kill some people?

    Family dogs can kill people.

    Hot baths can kill people.

    Peanuts can kill people.

    Do you want to ban all of those as well?

  15. #15 nybgrus
    April 12, 2011

    augie: project much, do we?

  16. #16 ahmet
    April 12, 2011

    I wonder if the powers that be at Brandeis are happy to see such a fallacy-laden blurb to advertise a talk on the Brandeis campus by a man who has consistently been such a major threat to public health

  17. #17 John Fryer Chemist
    April 12, 2011

    FACTS

    Andrew Wakefield is a supporter of ALL the components of the MMR vaccine when administered ONE at a time and of course only ONCE.

    Following his advice my grand daughter was vaccinated late with measles and mumps single vaccines with ABSOLUTELY no problems.

    The rubella single vaccine was given at age 13 years in the UK until the introduction of MMR around 1991.

    Further no one got the mumps vaccine before 1991 in normal circumstances .

    All in all a sharp rise in exposure by healthy infants to a prophylactic product.

    The rubella vaccine used in the MMR was tested by its makers on ADULTS not infants of 1 year with the following results:

    7 out of 33 had platelets destroyed at a rate around 20 per cent by day 3.

    Further at the end of the safety test period of 42 days this platelet destruction was rising very rapidly and very sharply from that of a just week before .

    Conclusion was: The significance is not clear.

    The injection of rubella vaccine to my grand daughter at an age of around 24 months was however deemed INAPPROPRIATE at this time by top doctors in the UK (not Andrew but Harley Street).

    What did they know when they could have collected another fat fee for this product?

  18. #18 Eleanor
    April 12, 2011

    Arggh, destroyed by your fact cannon….

    No, seriously though, why do you think the private doctors in Harley street have access to better information than those who review all the evidence and make policy decisions for the NHS? Is it because you paid them more?

    You have an ancedote that your granddaughter was fine after single jabs; I raise you about 300+ anecdotes about all the people I have ever known who had the combined MMR vaccine without significant side effects (basically everyone I’ve met in the UK below a certain age). Whoop. We’ve got nowhere.

    As for rubella induced platelet counts going up, going down, and conclusions being unclear, what’s that all about? Could you say where you got the figures so I could judge for myself? (Warning: I have a humdinger of an anecdote lined up about my friend who was born deaf because some unvaccinated git gave her mother rubella while she was preggers. Obvoiusly, a good anecdote will beat any evidence).

  19. #19 Krebiozen
    April 12, 2011

    @John Fryer Chemist – I really don’t understand what your point is. Hundreds of millions of children have been given MMR with absolutely no problems. About 1 in 40,000 of those given MMR will experience a temporary fall in platelets (thrombocytopenia), which will cause absolutely no problems in the vast majority. Do you have a reference for your “7 out of 33″ claim?

    There is no evidence at all that there is any advantage in giving the components of MMR separately.

    I live in London, and I know that Harley Street is riddled with quacks and charlatans. A Harley Street address is worth a fortune to those who wish to fleece the public from their money.

  20. #20 stripey_cat
    April 12, 2011

    Augie. In response to your tired old crap about harm v benefits. Everyone who learns first aid is taught that CPR is bloody dangerous. If you do it right (ie with enough force to actually stand a chance of helping), there is a high likelihood that you will break ribs. Then, you carry on shoving on broken ribs with half your body weight. This can cause a lot of internal injury, even be fatal if a rib splinter takes out a major blood vessel. I’d still hope that, if I ever drown, someone nearby is able and willing to beat the crap out of me like that until the paramedics arrive.

    Real, serious nurses, medics and doctors *know* that almost anything they do carries a risk of harm, and that they will almost certainly kill someone they’re trying to help at some point, maybe quite often (depending on their speciality). It may be an allergic reaction, it may be heart failure under anaesthetic, it may be some last-ditch chemo attempt. Anyone with friends in clinical training sees them going through this, grieving, and getting on with it. The reason treatments are *tested* is to make sure the risk of harm is significantly outweighed by the likelihood of help. If you want perfect results guaranteed, with no risk at all, grow up beyond six or seven. (Seriously, A., I’m not sure if you’re the kid being homeschooled or the parent of such – your behaviour makes it impossible to tell.)

  21. #21 Rob
    April 12, 2011

    Jake Crosby wrote:

    Struck off the UK’s medical register after writing a paper on the patient reports of 12 children with severe bowel disease and neurological disorders – 8 of whom developed autism shortly after their MMR vaccines for performing unethical and invasive experiments on children -

    Fixed it for him.

  22. #22 Visitor
    April 12, 2011

    I wonder what Mr Wakefield will say about Brian Deer, who was last week named Britain’s top specialist reporter?

    If my information is right, drug companies are not allowed to advertise in Britain, so I wonder how Mr Wakefield will get out of the idea that Mr Deer has been endorsed as one of the country’s most respected investigative reporters?

    http://briandeer.com/brian/press-awards-2011-win.htm

  23. #23 lilady
    April 12, 2011

    Ugh, John Fryer Chemist and frequent poster on Age of Autism…expert on all things “associated with vaccine” such as thimerisol-autism link, DNA contained in vaccine, quotes from some remote study that confirms his bias…with nebulous statements from Harley Street doctors. Might even have an “imaginary” grandchild. Frequent hit and run postings on science-based blogs in the U.S. and negative comment about educated Somalians in Minneapolis educating parents about the need to vaccinate their children. Leader of Andy’s cheering squad, who, if he is so enamored with Andy’s research should urge him to the U.K. Stay at Age of Autism John, where your rallying the troops and your “expertise” is appreciated.

    @ stripey_the cat: None of us can figure out what Augie is; my personal belief is that he is a product of home schooling, taught by mommy, emphasis on the bible whose science background is woefully deficient. It is hard to believe that his mommy claims “bragging rights” for this uneducated, lacking in any social skills, narrow minded, non-productive parasite, who disparages anyone with a science based education or anyone who understands science and calls them “liars”, incompetent, etc.

  24. #24 Todd W.
    April 12, 2011

    Just a point of clarification: Wakefield does not have a doctorate of any kind, let alone an MD. He has bachelor’s degrees: MB and BS.

  25. #25 LW
    April 12, 2011

    What augustine and its ilk don’t seem to (or want to) grasp is that everything in life has a certain small but real chance of killing someone. 

    Every time a trucker gets behind the wheel there’s a small but real chance of an accident that could kill or injury him or others — perhaps numerous others. Shall we pound on the keyboard and shriek that trucking is *inherently unsafe*?  Shall we shut down every company that employs truckers or vilify its management as psychopathic killers?

    Every industry that provides energy has a risk of killing people — nuclear as we’re seeing in Japan, coal mining as we hear every so often with trapped coal miners, oil and gas as we saw with Deep Horizon.  Shall we shut it all down and leave the world to freeze in the dark?

    Farming has a certain small but real chance of killing people. There was a case just recently of a small child killed by farm equipment. Shall we vilify farmers as psychopathic killers indifferent to the suffering they cause? Shall we shut down farming too, and all starve while we’re freezing in the dark?

    *Everything* is risky and every one of us is “guilty” of going on with our lives even though people may suffer or die as a result. Vilifying lilady as a monster because someone somewhere *might* suffer or die due to a vaccine is despicable.

  26. #26 R J Langley
    April 12, 2011

    I’ve been following this blog for a while but don’t think I’ve commented before. I gotta ask, is Augie for real or just trolling? I can’t imagine anyone genuine would come here time and time again just to be made to look this stupid all the time.

  27. #27 triskelethecat
    April 12, 2011

    @R J Langley: Augie is just stupid trolling. He is a hit and run troll who can’t answer questions but loves to throw out ad hominems. John Fryer Chemist is a (IIRC) retired pharmacist from the UK who is another troll. They know nothing about science. Sid Offit is a troll who only cares about himself and his family, not anyone else. They all can be safely killfiled if you have that installed. It will save on brain cells, trust me.

    MI Dawn

  28. #28 Beamup
    April 12, 2011

    Yes, he really is that completely incapable of using his brain for anything but keeping his skull from collapsing.

  29. #29 Brian Morgan
    April 12, 2011

    I’ve just noticed over on the BadScience(dot)net forum in the UK an entry disclosing that AoA are sponsoring this talk by Andrew Wakefield, though AoA don’t say this on their own site. And if you check recent entries on the BadScience blog there’s also a comment there about a John Stone article on AoA completely disappearing seemingly within 24 hours, one that had made serious allegations against Brian Deer but despite being deleted is still able to be read on a Google cache.

    The Brandeis University club that invited Andrew Wakefield is called Spectrum and members are those who are either autistic or their relatives and supporters.

    One comment on the DadScience forum says the writer has just emailed Brandeis about the Wakefield talk.

  30. #30 lilady
    April 12, 2011

    @ RJ Langley: They are all nasty, venom spewing trolls who actually hate little kids..especially little brown and black kids.

    Augie hasn’t a scintilla of knowledge about medicine and is a case of an inactivated moral compass with his rants against parents who have disabled children, immigrants and any religion than doesn’t embrace his warped “Christianity”. He is also very much the hypocrite with his rants against government…while being on the dole paid for by public tax dollars

    Thingy is another troll; possibly an “imaginary” alter ego of Augie. Both show signs of masochism…deriving satisfaction from the intellectual drubbing they receive…each and every time they post.

    Sid Offal is the intellectual slick one of the group. He chooses to post under a different name, to poke fun of a highly respected physician and scientist. He also states he is not part of the anti-vax crowd (merely wants “safer” vaccines), and never dirties his Libertarian hands by encouraging anti-vax terrorists who actually threaten and picket the highly respected physician/scientist and his family. He merely provides the ammunition, loads the gun and points the terrorists in the right direction

  31. #31 Todd W.
    April 12, 2011

    @Brian Morgan

    The event announcement on Brandeis’ web site states that it is sponsored by AoA (http://my.brandeis.edu/btime/item?item_id=536804)

  32. #32 Scott Cunningham
    April 12, 2011

    I see Brandeis U. is putting the salesmanship of the manufactroversy ahead of its academic merit. Never mind skeptics, I hope someone from the science faculty will be there to explain that the evidence thoroughly does not support Wakefield, and that it’s hard to imagine how his unethical, medically unwarranted colonoscopies ever got past an IRB.

  33. #33 Felix
    April 12, 2011

    Is he a Dr of anything any more? Is he allowed to call himself one?

  34. #34 Mu
    April 12, 2011

    Brandeis might have a real problem with Dr Wakefield, most academic institutions don’t like people using titles they are not entitled to, even on a courtesy basis (as most licensed physicians do even without actual doctorate, but that no longer applied to dear Andrew).

  35. #35 Lawrence
    April 12, 2011

    Ugh – boring troll is repeating its stupid arguments again (or just calling people names – which all it seems to be good at).

    Student groups at colleges have all kinds of interesting characters speak at their schools – 9/11 Truthers, Ufologists, etc. The schools themselves usually don’t have anything to do with it.

    I was certain that Wakefield et. al. would push the “martyr” angle & it is very convenient for his supporters to ommit the fact that he conducted what amounted to unauthorized experimentation on children.

  36. #36 Denice Walter
    April 12, 2011

    I had the good fortune – of course,I’m being facetious- to tune in to Gary Null’s broadcast yesterday and heard Andy for 15 minutes or so before I had to leave ( curiously, it doesn’t show @ progressiveradioarchives.com): I was able to discern that he had nothing really new to say. “Alas, poor me, the powers-that-be have had their way with me” or somesuch. Awful. However, Mr Wakefield is integral to my Trickle-down Theory of Pseudo-science**, so listen I must.

    @ Visitor: he only had a few words on Mr Deer- “tragic” and “problems”,spoken in hushed, concerned tones. As a person with background in both psychology and finance, I translate this to mean that he isn’t exactly thrilled with the fellow who wrecked his shot at the really big loot.

    ** so named because I believe that the spoutings and drippings of pseudo-scientists ooze their way down to the general public where they can do real harm; also, I cannot resist the opportunity to refer deleteriously to the Trickle-down Theory Of Ec. and its proponents on both sides of the pond, past or present.

  37. #37 Todd W.
    April 12, 2011

    If anyone has seen/heard Wakefield speak recently, it might be helpful to provide details of specific points he made and is likely to make again tomorrow night. Could help anyone thinking of attending come up with questions to ask him and anticipate the answers so they don’t get stuck.

  38. #38 Orac
    April 12, 2011

    @Todd W.

    I actually saved a web archive of the Brandeis U. page. Right now, it does indeed say that the talk is sponsored by AoA. I wonder if Jake got a little carried away.;-)

    Complaints to Brandeis should point out what AoA is, namely the blog of Jenny McCarthy’s anti-vaccine group Age of Autism.

  39. #39 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 12, 2011

    Brandeis might have a real problem with Dr Wakefield, most academic institutions don’t like people using titles they are not entitled to, even on a courtesy basis (as most licensed physicians do even without actual doctorate, but that no longer applied to dear Andrew).

    Wakefield was barred from practising medicine in the UK. He did not have his medical degree removed. Further, it is not at all clear he was a physician. When he did clinical work it was a trainee surgeon, not a physician. However he did not pass his final sugury exams (not sure if he even took them) so he not a Mr.

  40. #40 Adam Lipkin
    April 12, 2011

    Brandeis is also the home to Michael Willrich, who stands for pretty much the exact opposite of Wakefield. I’d like to think he’ll have more influence over Brandeis students than this crank.

  41. #41 Orac
    April 12, 2011

    @Matt Penfold

    I agree. As much as I despise Wakefield, there’s one thing that irritates the crap out of me, and that’s skeptics and vaccine supporters trying to say he’s not a doctor. He might not be licensed to practice medicine any more in the U.K. (or anywhere else, as far as I know), but he still has his degree and is still a doctor. Whenever I see that ploy of saying “he’s not a doctor,” my systolic blood pressure rises at least a few points.

  42. #42 Denice Walter
    April 12, 2011

    @ Todd W. – from memory: AW said that kids weren’t recruited by lawyers- parents brought them to Royal Free because of their illness, that his work has been replicated “all over the world” ( naming countries), and that he was persecuted, of course, by entrenched interests ( my paraphrase).

  43. #43 daedalus2u
    April 12, 2011

    I am in the greater Boston area and will likely be there to protest. I have a van, so if someone needs to transport protest-type stuff, I can help.

  44. #44 Todd W.
    April 12, 2011

    @Denice Walter

    Thanks. It seems, then, that it would be good for anyone thinking of attending to familiarize themselves with the studies that are claimed to support Wakefield. Perhaps print off Kev Leitch’s and Catherina’s notes that Orac linked to.

  45. #45 triskelethecat
    April 12, 2011

    @lilady: Sadly, no. Th1Th2 is not a sockpuppet of little augie. The Thing has posted for quite some time over on Science-Based Medicine, where he/she/it made all kinds of ridiculous claims like children walk on sidewalks and never fall down. Thing at least can READ and give references. They may be 90+ years old or older, but I do give credit that at least Thing tries to give references. Augie is, as you know, incapable of doing so.

  46. #46 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    augustine: “He’s an M.D. You are a 4 year degree nurse from the stone ages.”

    Oh how fucking ridiculously wrong you are, augustine! You really fucked up on this one. Wakefield is not, and never has been, an MD. His qualifications are as follows:

    MB, BS – Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (University of London post-nominals)

    FRCS – Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons

    FRCPath – Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists (and there’s some contention about how he got this Royal College Fellowship)

    Not one of those is a doctoral degree or its equivalent.

    You’re a pathetic little know-nothing arsewipe, augustine. Think … this is what your parents left you open to by ‘home-schooling’ you!

    Fucking brilliant! Loving this!

  47. #47 Mu
    April 12, 2011

    Sorry plexiglass box, it drives my blood pressure up to see someone claim a degree he doesn’t have (might have to do with having to have spent a lot of time to get a doctorate myself). He does NOT have an MD, he had a courtesy “Dr.” applied to his name because in the UK you can actually become a licensed physician without getting the MD from your trade school like in the US.
    I’m actually rather surprised in your case, since you went to the trouble of doing it twice, and became a professor to top that off. And that all boils down to being introduced the same way as Mr. Wakefield?

  48. #48 Anton P. Nym
    April 12, 2011

    Your fair city is being invaded

    Last time somebody said that in the fair city of Boston, the invaders turned out to be Lite-Brite Mooninites. Therefor, in line with this prior precedent, I fully expect to see Mr. Wakefield promptly immersed in a water barrel and detonated to protect Bostonians.

    (That, or their demonstrated lack of critical thinking will lead to a huge city-wide fete for this hero of the common weal. Not certain how this particular cookie will crumble.)

    — Steve

  49. #49 Denice Walter
    April 12, 2011

    @ Todd W.- I just recalled that he also said something about standard vax studies having used a placebo that wasn’t truly apropo because it contained Alum.! More talk on contaminants; more on nefarious plots and skulduggery against his pristine self( my words).

    No need to thank me: it’s all part of my job.

  50. #50 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 12, 2011

    Sorry plexiglass box, it drives my blood pressure up to see someone claim a degree he doesn’t have (might have to do with having to have spent a lot of time to get a doctorate myself). He does NOT have an MD, he had a courtesy “Dr.” applied to his name because in the UK you can actually become a licensed physician without getting the MD from your trade school like in the US.

    You seem a bit confused.

    In order to practice medicine in the UK you need a medical degree. If you got that degree from a British university it will be a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery degree or similar.

    in the UK physician is not simply someone with a medical degree, it is a person who has done post-graduate training and passed exams in medicine as opposed to surgery. Further, a doctor who has specialised in surgery will be called Mr, Mrs, Miss or Ms (as appropriate) and not “Dr”. Thus in the UK Orac would not be a physician and would be Mr Orac, not Dr Orac, since he is a surgical oncologist.

    In Wakefield’s case it seems he did not complete sufficient training to become a fully qualified surgeon, and so remained “Dr”.

  51. #51 ArtK
    April 12, 2011

    @Matt Penfold

    Thus in the UK Orac would not be a physician and would be Mr Orac, not Dr Orac, since he is a surgical oncologist.

    Would the “Mr.” of his surgical certification take precedence over the “Dr.” of his PhD?

  52. #52 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 12, 2011

    Would the “Mr.” of his surgical certification take precedence over the “Dr.” of his PhD?

    In his clinical work, yes.

  53. #53 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    “You seem a bit confused.”

    Actually, you’re the one who is confused. I’ll show you why.

    “In order to practice medicine in the UK you need a medical degree.”

    Correct so far.

    “If you got that degree from a British university it will be a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery degree or similar.”

    Very good … two for two, and counting…

    “in the UK physician is not simply someone with a medical degree, it is a person who has done post-graduate training and passed exams in medicine as opposed to surgery. Further, a doctor who has specialised in surgery will be called Mr, Mrs, Miss or Ms (as appropriate) and not “Dr”. Thus in the UK Orac would not be a physician and would be Mr Orac, not Dr Orac, since he is a surgical oncologist.”

    Three for three, or would have been,but you missed out two important facts:

    1- Orac’s medical degree is Doctor of Medicine which, in the US, is graduate intake and is a legitimate postgraduate degree, ergo one reason why – even as a oncological surgeon – Orac would be Doctor Orac;

    2- Orac also has a Doctor of Philosophy degree in a science subject, which is also a postgraduate degree that entitles one to be called “Doctor”.

    “In Wakefield’s case it seems he did not complete sufficient training to become a fully qualified surgeon, and so remained “Dr”. ”

    Wrong. Wakefield is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons, which is the registrable qualification to be a surgeon in the UK. He was, therefore, Mr. Wakefield and not Dr. Wakefield.

    Orac, regarding Wakefield being a doctor … a qualified person practising medicine holds the courtesy title of “Dr.” even though their registrable qualification might be the conjointly awarded degrees Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery; however, this title is for practitioners only. He went into surgery, which is what made him “Mr. Wakefield”; he never was “Dr. Wakefield” (except possibly during his house year, for the six months that he worked under supervision in one or two medical fields). Since his name has been struck off the medical register, he is no longer able to practise medicine in the UK. Because of this, he cannot be called “Dr.”, even though his medical degrees have not been rescinded. He is free to work in medical science as a researcher, of course … but, really, can anyone see him being able to get a post in that area any more?

    I hope this sorts it all out.

  54. #54 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 12, 2011

    1- Orac’s medical degree is Doctor of Medicine which, in the US, is graduate intake and is a legitimate postgraduate degree, ergo one reason why – even as a oncological surgeon – Orac would be Doctor Orac;

    No. Qualified surgeons in the UK are “Mr” regardless of any other qualifications they may have.

    2- Orac also has a Doctor of Philosophy degree in a science subject, which is also a postgraduate degree that entitles one to be called “Doctor”.

    His Phd is not relevant to his clinical work, and he would still be “Mr” in the UK.

    Wakefield never completed his surgical training. Trainee surgeons are still “Dr”, not “Mr”.

    Now why not just cut the crap and admit you were confused. Ignorance is no crime, but wilful ignorance is.

  55. #55 Brian Morgan
    April 12, 2011

    The use by surgeons of the title “Mr” or “Mrs” is steeped on the history of the trade or profession – it’s restricted to the UK, where at one time barbers and surgeons were part of the same guild or company. They separated in 1745. In 1800 the Royal College of Surgeons was formed.

    Surgeons at one time did not study and gain degrees, they just worked as apprentices – they never attained the title Dr. Now, hanging on to the title Mr or Mrs is a kind of superiority at their hospital workplaces – nothing to do with different levels of training or study.

    As far as the regulatory body, the General Medical Council, is concerned they are all “Dr”. Doctors who have become de-registered for whatever reason will still call themselves Dr but it’s not justified, and if they ever presented themselves in any way as being “a doctor” they could be prosecuted. Friends, neighbours and acquaintances will still call them Dr but that’s just out of politeness.

    Those with postgraduate degrees may use the title Dr, but it’s a tenuous claim. When I started reported for the Independent in the eighties their style-book categorically restricted the title Dr to those with medical registration.

  56. #56 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 12, 2011

    Those with postgraduate degrees may use the title Dr, but it’s a tenuous claim. When I started reported for the Independent in the eighties their style-book categorically restricted the title Dr to those with medical registration.

    When I worked for the civil service in the UK I was taught that medical doctors would be “Dr” in all circumstances, except when they were surgeons of course, and people with a Ph.D. would only be “Dr” if the issue was related to their academic discipline.

  57. #57 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    “His Phd is not relevant to his clinical work, and he would still be “Mr” in the UK.”

    Wrong again.

    Deal with it.

  58. #58 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    “Now why not just cut the crap and admit you were confused. Ignorance is no crime, but wilful ignorance is.”

    I’m just going by what I was told when I was at medical school.

    Now, Matt – go fuck yourself.

  59. #59 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    Would the “Mr.” of his surgical certification take precedence over the “Dr.” of his PhD?

    In his clinical work, yes. ”

    Actually, no.

    Shut up, Matt. Clearly you know nothing.

  60. #60 lilady
    April 12, 2011

    Suggestions about attending Andy’s meeting at Rapaporte Treasure Hall were requested.

    Recalling my experiences when I was an active advocate, we parent/advocates would schedule ourselves to speak and we each emphasized one and only salient point. Granted, our advocacy was on behalf of children and adults with handicapping conditions for positive changes not “outing” an unlicensed doctor.

    We also had a number of TV and newspaper reporters who were “friendly” to our causes and could be counted on to come and cover the meetings. We, of course, spoke or met with our friends in the media to give them background information prior to their attendance at the meeting and gave interviews after the meeting. When Andy met with Somalians for the third time in Minneapolis, reporters were alerted and tried to attend the meeting. They were denied entrance…it was a “private” meeting. The meeting at Rapaporte hall is an open meeting.

    If you are only allowed one question…make it a good one, such as “why didn’t you file an appeal when the British Medical Board issued their decision to strike (or revoke) your license to practice?”.

  61. #61 augustine
    April 12, 2011

    Mr. David N. Andrews M.D., M. Ed., C.S.I, LMNOPhD

    You really fucked up on this one.
    Wrong again.
    Deal with it.
    Shut up, Matt. Clearly you know nothing.

    Don’t you have Asbergers?
    Are you taking medication for your social side effects? You may want to alter the dose or change the brand.

    Some of your neurological malfunctions and insecurity issues may not stem from your diagnosis de jour. Maybe they were learned behaviors and products of your environment.

  62. #62 Jen
    April 12, 2011

    Augustine @ 2: LMAO! NASA suits or star trek outfits, for sure!

  63. #63 dedicated lurker
    April 12, 2011

    Are you taking medication for your social side effects? You may want to alter the dose or change the brand.

    There isn’t a medication to treat Asperger’s, auggie. Risperdal has been used to lessen some autistic symptoms, but it’s not treating the condition.

    Augustine @ 2: LMAO! NASA suits or star trek outfits, for sure!

    Wow jen, what an overwhelming factual argument. I’m totally convinced.

  64. #64 Dr Caroline Traa
    April 12, 2011

    Wish I could be there to see him! He is an amazing man, good and true whose only crime
    has been to speak out about bowel problems and vaccine damage in children with autism. Everyone knows this exists and inevitably all will one day be revealed. Without a doubt a generation of our children have been damaged. I owe my child’s life to good doctors like Andy Wakefield. I applaude his tenaciousness and his scientific integrity. Dr Caroline Traa, Scotland

  65. #65 Dr Caroline Traa
    April 12, 2011

    Wish I could be there to see him! He is an amazing man, good and true whose only crime
    has been to speak out about bowel problems and vaccine damage in children with autism. Everyone knows this exists and inevitably all will one day be revealed. Without a doubt a generation of our children have been damaged. I owe my child’s life to good doctors like Andy Wakefield. I applaude his tenaciousness and his scientific integrity. Dr Caroline Traa, Scotland

  66. #66 Dr Caroline Traa
    April 12, 2011

    Wish I could be there to see him! He is an amazing man, good and true whose only crime
    has been to speak out about bowel problems and vaccine damage in children with autism. Everyone knows this exists and inevitably all will one day be revealed. Without a doubt a generation of our children have been damaged. I owe my child’s life to good doctors like Andy Wakefield. I applaude his tenaciousness and his scientific integrity. Dr Caroline Traa, Scotland

  67. #67 Lawrence
    April 12, 2011

    There are a lot of children with bowel issues that aren’t autistic as well – I don’t see the correlation.

  68. #68 Beamup
    April 12, 2011

    So lying, making up data, and harming many children by producing a completely unjustified MMR scare – and doing it all for personal profit – are just fine these days?

    Wakefield is a truly evil man. He doesn’t care how many people he kills so long as he gets the money.

  69. #69 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 12, 2011

    “Don’t you have Asbergers?”

    No. I have Asperger syndrome. Learn to spell.

    “Are you taking medication for your social side effects? You may want to alter the dose or change the brand.”

    No. No need. Are you taking any medication for your incessant irritating behaviour?

    “Some of your neurological malfunctions and insecurity issues may not stem from your diagnosis de jour. Maybe they were learned behaviors and products of your environment.”

    What do you mean? Like you learned from your mummy and daddy how to be an annoying and crass little shit?

    Thing is – if you have to come on here and behave the way you do – then it’s a very safe bet that you’re the insecure one. As everybody who knows your behaviour here can no doubt tell.

    I hear that the best medication for being a terminally irritating little shit is strichnine. Not that I’m recommending it for you, you understand… However, if you’re stupid enough to do it …

    I can’t see any educational interventions improving your psychological status.

  70. #70 Sullivan
    April 12, 2011

    From the Brandies announcement: “Sponsored by http://www.ageofautism.com

    At least the University isn’t fronting the bill for Andy’s travel. Even worse would have been if the club (Spectrum) had wasted its meager resources on paying him to fly out.

    Andrew Wakefield is a doctor. He has a degree in medicine. He has the right to call himself doctor. It is appropriate for those who wish to call him Doctor. It is also appropriate and respectful to call him Mr. Wakefield, or to call him “Wakefield”.

    It is appropriate to point out that he is not a treating physician. He is unlicensed in the US. Some of his ethical infractions involved ignoring the fact that he was specifically not to take an active part in treatment.

  71. #71 Joseph
    April 12, 2011

    @Augustine:

    Some of your neurological malfunctions and insecurity issues may not stem from your diagnosis de jour. Maybe they were learned behaviors and products of your environment.

    What I’d like to know is what sort of environment produces bigotted jack-asses such as Augustine. I think it would be in the public interest to avoid them.

  72. To clarify some of the discussion about UK medical terminology:

    Andrew Wakefield passed Bachelor degrees in medicine and surgery (MB BS) which are the typical “primary” qualification for people who study medicine at University in the UK. He then completed his pre-registration “foundation” year working in a hospital and, having completed that, was then registered with the General Medical Council. It is this latter registration, usually termed in the UK “full registration”, that confers the right to practise medicine in the UK and that was revoked when Wakefield was removed from the register (“struck off”).

    As various people have pointed out, ‘Dr” for UK medical practitioners CAN be regarded as a “courtesy” title, but it is so universal that it hardly seems worth an argument. A more interesting Q is whether this “courtesy” title depends on your having passed the MBBS degrees at University, or on your remaining a licensed medical practitioner. I am not sure there is a standard answer to this.

    So… whether it is now formally correct to call Saint Andy “Doctor” or “Mister”… well, his University degrees have not been revoked, but he is no longer a licensed medical practitioner, having been erased for his appalling misconduct. So what you now call him might depend on precisely what you view “Doctor” as deriving from. Personally I reckon it is quite possible to argue that he has forfeited the title “Doctor”.

    Next: within UK medicine, the word “physician” is used to describe someone who has completed all specialist training for one of the medical specialities. A “surgeon” is someone who has completed all specialist training in one of the surgical specialities. Wakefield was never either of these – he was a trainee surgeon, but never went far through the training. Thus in the UK he would never have been entitled to the special surgical “Mister”, which is reserved for those who have completed the training. Nor would he have been entitled to call himself a surgeon, unless prefixed by the word “trainee”. And he was never any kind of physician.

    Finally, being a Fellow of a Royal College in the UK is not, strictly speaking, a licensing exam, though it was about a century ago. Nowadays it indicates you have passed some (generally quite difficult) exams. Many trainees take the exams fairly early in their specialist training, so it is not atypical for surgeons who are still trainees to already be MRCS (Member of the Royal College of Surgeons). Wakefield was/is an example.

  73. #73 Denice Walter
    April 12, 2011

    @ Dr Aust:

    Thank you so very much for clearing that up for us!
    It quite breaks my heart to hear my fellow skeptics argue about relatively minor details when there are such pressing issues at hand!(wipes tear from cheek) Sorry about that.

    In the words of our brother from the good old days of the Enlightenment (i.e. Ben Franklin**):
    “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately”.

    ** whenever I’m in Phila. I try to visit his grave.

  74. #74 Izzy
    April 12, 2011

    Goodness, this is a venomous lot of comments from the religious zeolots that inhabit these ‘sceptic’ forums. Heaven forbid somebody point out the thousands of children killed by vaccines every year, the corruption involved in Wakefield’s persecution, or that the holy grail of medicine is in fact a serious killer and leaves thousands of children maimed for life every single year.

    Anyway, never mind me, guess I’m anti-science for advocating better science and research into these things.

    Enjoy your religious fanaticism, it’s most amusing. Don’t forget to bow at the shrine of science for me. And have a nice day. :)

  75. #75 Party Cactus
    April 12, 2011

    Someone should ask him about homeopathy, so some other alternative medicine canard. I would be curious to know how he would respond. Would he at least have the integrity to call homeopathy what it is, even if it means angering some of his support base (people like Joe Mercola and Mike Adams who call him heroic) or would he really say anything to appeal to his target demographic? I wonder, when push comes to shove, just how low he would go to hold on to his favored among the quacks position. My guess is that if you asked him about. say. homeopathy as an autism treatment or vaccine alternative, he’d weasel around it and not give a straight answer or strong opinion either way, so as not to sound like too much of a crank but not to alienate anyone either.

  76. #76 Chris
    April 12, 2011

    Izzy:

    Heaven forbid somebody point out the thousands of children killed by vaccines every year,

    Yes, they do get pointed out, but when asked for verification of this the folks making the claim seem to disappear. Could you please tell us what evidence (not VAERS please) you have that thousands of children are killed by vaccines?

  77. #77 Sullivan
    April 12, 2011

    “Heaven forbid somebody point out the thousands of children killed by vaccines every year, the corruption involved in Wakefield’s persecution, or that the holy grail of medicine is in fact a serious killer and leaves thousands of children maimed for life every single year.”

    Heaven forbid you provide accurate information…

  78. #78 Antaeus Feldspar
    April 12, 2011

    Heaven forbid somebody point out the thousands of children killed by vaccines every year,

    When someone “points out” this purported fact, they are always invited to provide substantiation.

    No one, so far, has been able to meet the challenge.

    If you would like to be the first, you’re welcome to try.

    the corruption involved in Wakefield’s persecution,

    That’s easy to allege, but if you can’t back it up, the allegation means nothing.

    or that the holy grail of medicine is in fact a serious killer and leaves thousands of children maimed for life every single year.

    Aren’t you just repeating yourself? Oh, I see, your first point was thousands of children killed by vaccines every year, now you’re presenting the claim that thousands of children are maimed by vaccines every year. Regardless, the response is the same: if all you can do is make allegations, and you can’t provide any evidence to support those allegations, it would be a greater act of “zeolotry” to believe your fact-free claims than it is to be skeptical of them.

  79. #79 Be Careful
    April 12, 2011

    Izzy: I’m puzzled. If you really think that this is such a cesspool, why would you imagine that your comment would be allowed to stand? Certainly JB Handley protects his followers by deleting any posts that might disturb his hold on them. Yet you post here, almost as if you subconsciously recognize that this is a place where the blog-owner isn’t afraid of even the most mendacious post disagreeing with his view. Be careful – if you start to consciously recognize Orac’s willingness to hear dissenting views, you’ll find it’s catching.

  80. #80 The Panic Man
    April 13, 2011

    Izzy, familiarize yourself with this phrase, because you’re either going to counter it or you’re going to leave:

    [citation needed]

  81. #81 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 13, 2011

    Wrong again.

    Deal with it.

    Now you are just lying.

    The NHS has doctors from all over the world working for it. No matter what their other qualifications, surgeons become “Mr”, or Mrs etc.

    It is a pity you refused to admit to your ignorance, and it is telling you were unable to admit to that ignorance. I hope you have higher professional standards.

    Now begone liar.

  82. #82 Chris
    April 13, 2011

    Dr. Penfold:

    Now you are just lying.

    Be very careful of what you assume. Orac is both a medical doctor with a PhD in his field of cancer research. Do not make blanket declarations without all of the relevant evidence (and our kind host’s real identity is the Internet’s worst secret).

    Your refusal to acknowledge you are out of your depth in not flattering.

    (even though we are anonymous, we often reveal our backgrounds in our posts… I am a former aerospace engineer, many others are actual medical doctors — like one whose middle name is the same as a shark in a fishy animation…. the point is to ignore the names, but pay attention to the words)

  83. #83 LW
    April 13, 2011

    How about if we just agree that Wakefield has disgraced the title of Doctor, whether or not he is still entitled to claim it under the law or customs of the U.K., U.S., or any other nation.

    Now can we have “a discussion here of what sorts of claims Wakefield is likely to make and links to resources to refute those claims”?

  84. #84 Neil Craig
    April 13, 2011

    More eco-fascist lies from Disrespectful Ignorance. If the autor here had any trace of integrity they would publicly apologise.

  85. #85 MartinM
    April 13, 2011

    Feel free to actually identify these alleged ‘lies’, Neil. Oddly enough, nobody’s going to just take your word for it.

  86. #86 LW
    April 13, 2011

    “Eco-fascist lies” — hmm, I don’t see where Orac said anything about the environment or ecology or anything related to either.

  87. #87 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 13, 2011

    Be very careful of what you assume. Orac is both a medical doctor with a PhD in his field of cancer research. Do not make blanket declarations without all of the relevant evidence (and our kind host’s real identity is the Internet’s worst secret).

    This has been dealt with already.

    However since you are clearly not able to read nor think well, I will explain once again.

    In the UK qualified surgeons do not take the title “Dr”, but rather “Mr”, “Mrs”, etc as appropriate.

    This is the case regardless of what other qualification the surgeon has. Now just to be clear, a surgeon in the UK stays “Mr” even if they do have a Ph.D.

    The only time a surgeon will not be called “Mr” etc is when they hold a professorship at a medical school.

    I would have thought this would be easy to understand. Clearly I overestimated your intelligence. Sorry about that.

    Your refusal to acknowledge you are out of your depth in not flattering.

    So being correct is being out of my depth is it ? Tell me, are you always this stupid ?

    I think you need to apologise for you stupidity.

  88. #88 hyperdeath
    April 13, 2011

    “Eco-fascist lies” — hmm, I don’t see where Orac said anything about the environment or ecology or anything related to either.

    Demanding coherent argument, based on what was actually said, is another Eco-fascist trick!

    In fact, you’re not just an Eco-fascist; you’re an Eco-fascist-communist!

  89. #89 LW
    April 13, 2011

    Not me! I’m an Eco-fascist-anarchist!

  90. #90 dedicated lurker
    April 13, 2011

    Well, I’m an eco-facist-communist-socialist-anarchist-monarchist-con artist!

  91. #91 BraselC5048
    April 13, 2011

    So, as I understand it from your posts, Wakefield was in fact a docter (in the layman’s sense) in the UK, but he would not have been adressed as ‘Dr’, insted he would be adressed as ‘Mr’, since he was a surgen. Since he’s now in the US, I guess the bigger question is how he would be adressed here. I suspect that there isn’t a standard answer to that question.

  92. #92 Matt Penfold, CO of the HMSO
    April 13, 2011

    So, as I understand it from your posts, Wakefield was in fact a docter (in the layman’s sense) in the UK, but he would not have been adressed as ‘Dr’, insted he would be adressed as ‘Mr’, since he was a surgen. Since he’s now in the US, I guess the bigger question is how he would be adressed here. I suspect that there isn’t a standard answer to that question.

    Wakefield never completed his training to be a surgeon, so he would not have been called “Mr”.

  93. #93 Chris
    April 13, 2011

    Wow, Dr. Penfold, you must be a real joy to be around. None of that pesky humility or ability say “Ooops, I am wrong. Thanks for the information” notions in your head. (oh, in case there is any doubt, the preceding was sarcasm)

    And, yeah, I admit to just skimming through your whining.

  94. #94 Orac
    April 13, 2011

    To everyone arguing about whether Wakefield should be called “doctor” or not:

    STOP IT.

    NOW.

    I DON’T CARE.

    I REALLY DON’T.

    And I don’t care if I piss you off by telling you so this bluntly.

    If you want to know why I said that my systolic blood pressure goes up 5 points whenever I see someone say that Wakefield shouldn’t be called “doctor,” I’ll point out that you’ve all just demonstrated why such comments have that effect on me–in spades! Whenever I see a comment claiming that Wakefield shouldn’t be called “doctor,” I know that there is at least a 50-50 chance that soon will follow a pissy, puerile, pedantic, annoying, downright brain-dead argument that has nothing to do with the science showing Wakefield’s work was bogus or the evidence that he committed scientific fraud and everything to do with ad hominem. I wasn’t disappointed.

    “Oooh, oooh! Wakefield isn’t a doctor! Wakefield isn’t a real doctor! He shouldn’t ever be called ‘doctor’!” As though that has anything at all to do with whether or not he promoted medical pseudoscience and anti-vax nonsense, even if true!

    STOP. IT. NOW.

  95. #95 Militant Agnostic
    April 13, 2011

    @94 – I think we should just agree to use “Asshole” as Wakefield’s official title and move on.

  96. #96 MartinM
    April 13, 2011

    STOP. IT. NOW.

    OR I’LL TURN THIS BLOG AROUND AND GO HOME.

  97. #97 Antaeus Feldspar
    April 13, 2011

    I personally think “now-delicensed-for-cause Wakefield” conveys what’s important.

  98. #98 T. Bruce McNeely
    April 13, 2011

    I personally think “now-delicensed-for-cause Wakefield” conveys what’s important.

    Hey, Wakefield’s a Brit! The correct terminology is “struck off”.

    (I’m not being pedantic, I just really like the term “struck off”)

  99. #99 Orac
    April 13, 2011

    So do I, actually.

  100. #100 Laika
    April 13, 2011

    I wrote an email to Brandeis asking about the funding for the talk. I said that the timing was especially unfortunate due to the local measles outbreak. Also suggested a science based presentation to balance out Wakefield’s drivel. I received a response in less than 15 minutes. I think they’ve heard from a few people and this is their standard response.

    Thank you for your message. I assure you that Brandeis is not funding and had no role in organizing or sponsoring the appearance of Mr. Wakefield on our campus. The event was organized by a student.

    FYI, you might be interested to see the cover story on autism we published in Brandeis Magazine last fall: http://www.brandeis.edu/magazine/2010/fall/featured-stories/untanglingautism.html

    Best regards,

    Bill Burger

  101. #101 Dangerous Bacon
    April 13, 2011

    I would also like to see well-informed skeptics politely rake Andy Wakefield over the coals during his Brandeis appearance. Some questions about why certain autism advocates continue to tarnish their reputations by clinging to Wakefield would be good too.

    It is well to remember that numerous American universities survived the unpleasantness of having William Shockley on campus in the ’60s to promote his ideas of black inferiority. Brandeis will survive having a disgraced medical researcher speak there as well.

    I also enjoy the term “struck off”. :)

  102. #102 lilady
    April 13, 2011

    @ Laika/Bill Burger: Thank you so much for the link to Brandeis Magazine; it is an excellent article about autism spectrum disorders.

    I’m presuming that some reporters from the Magazine will be in attendance tonight and that you will provide us to the link of the article that is published in Brandeis Magazine.

  103. #103 Composer99
    April 13, 2011

    Is it wrong that I find MartinM’s comment really funny?

    On topic, I hope we get a report on whether anyone went to the talk with a view to rebutting some of Wakefield’s ridiculousness tomorrow, whether here or somewhere else on the blogosphere.

  104. #104 John Santos
    April 13, 2011

    Interesting that the 2nd monkey paper focuses on HepB, since I got my 2nd (of 3) HepB shots this morning, and am planning to attend Wakefield’s talk in a couple of hours. Here’s hoping I don’t come down with autism before then.

  105. #105 daedalus2u
    April 13, 2011

    Good that other people will be there, I will be there too.

  106. #106 laika
    April 13, 2011

    May I respectfully point out that it is notable that Brandeis referred to tonight’s speaker as Mr. Wakefield.

  107. #107 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 13, 2011

    Matt Penfold = wanker. Enough said.

    Regarding licensing of surgeons in the UK, this is done via the basic medical degree, registration with the GMC and one carries on with the study for the exams of one’s chosen royal College. In my aunt’s case, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. In Wakefield’s case, it was the Royal College of Surgeons.

    But the possession of a doctoral degree <>ipso facto allows the holder to be called ‘Dr.’

    Now, Matt fucking Penfold, go fuck yourself. Arrogant little Twat.

  108. #108 John Santos
    April 13, 2011

    Was anyone there besides Daedalus2u and me?

    I have about 8 pages of notes, not sure what I should do with them.

    They said at the end it was taped and would be put up online, not sure where, but I think at AoA.

  109. #109 Omri
    April 13, 2011

    Wow, so one student brought Wakefield over? And Age Of Autism is pimping this event like they can claim a mantle of respectability now that they’ve had a speaking event at an accredited university?

    Reminds me of the time an MIT student invited the Time Cube guy over to MIT for a talk. Except that unfortunate schizophrenic still had the good sense to know he was not gaining credibility from that event.

  110. #110 Omri
    April 13, 2011

    “Was anyone there besides Daedalus2u and me?”

    Brandeis is not conveniently T-able, so I could not make it. I think Wakefield probably did at least find out as much before going. I don’t think he would dare show up at any T-convenient venue. The stampede of nerds from Camberville would probably finish with tar and feathers.

  111. #111 Laika
    April 13, 2011

    How did it go? Was the crowd mostly AoA devotees? Did anyone speak up and confront Mr. Wakefield? I don’t expect a blow by blow but would just love to hear what the general tone of the evening was. Were there any protesters? Was he as smarmy and slick as we thought he would be? Oh I wish I could have been there!

  112. #112 daedalus2u
    April 13, 2011

    I couldn’t sit though the whole thing. Wakefield did run over so there wouldn’t be as much time for questions. There were quite a few sycophants there.

  113. #113 daedalus2u
    April 13, 2011

    I did ask him why he didn’t report Nicholas Chadwick’s negative PCR results for measles vaccine virus. He said he reported the positive results from the labs that got positive results.

  114. #114 John Santos
    April 14, 2011

    My guess is about 40-40-20 believers, skeptics and curious, judging by applause and audience response. Most of the believers were in the front.

    There were 9 questions at the end, if I counted correctly. Only 2 were clearly fan/softball questions. Disappointingly, one of them was from a pediatrician. She introduced her self as Janet Leviton and said that the autism epidemic exploded after they started routinely vaccinating 1 day olds for HepB. (She cited no data or studies, it sounded totally anecdotal.) It was more a “Thank you Doctor Wakefield” than an actual question, as far as I could tell.

    The other softball was from a “Mommy”: The media won’t probe for the truth so what to do? (There was a lot of media bashing.)

    Wakefield’s response was that he wasn’t anti-vax, just anti-some vax, and you need to consider both the upside and downside of both vaccines and of disease. (Upside of disease? WTF?) He said he is pro measles vax, I didn’t quite understand his answer, but I think he was saying it was because mother’s antibodies aren’t passed on in their milk (to measles specifically or antibodies in general, I’m not sure) if the mother was vaccinated for measles (or for anything?) I think he was implying that the antibodies would be passed on if the mother had acquired them by actually having measles. Is there any truth to this?

    I think his implication was that the need for measles vaccine is due to the vicious cycle that mother’s who were vaccinated rather than who have had measles won’t pass on their immunity and thus their children need to be vaccinated too.

    This begs the question what of children who aren’t breast-fed.

    Not sure if he thinks that all children should get measles vax after they are off breast milk (i.e. at about 1 year.)

    If not, this also doesn’t explain how measles managed to exist in the wild when most or all mothers would have had it as children and most or all children were breast-fed.

    Then he went off on a tangent about receiving multiple vaccinations in too short a time (one a year seemed to be his limit; he mocked Paul Offit for suggesting that (?)120,000 antigens could be presented at once and a kid’s immune system could cope.

    He said mumps and chicken pox vaccines were bad because they wear off and getting these diseases as adults was much worse than as children. (Seems if this is true, it argues for boosters, not abandonment of vaccines.) He didn’t mention shingles.

    Then launched into another Thimerosal tirade (he brought it up a lot.) He said at the meetings where they decided to remove it, many of the doctors present were arguing that it shouldn’t be removed even though they would never give it to their own children (he painted the “medical establishment” as hypocrites a lot), and claimed a vast conspiracy to cover up all the damage Thimerosal had done. I think this is the only time he mentioned, even obliquely, that Thimerosal had been removed from most vaccines a decade ago, making it a dead horse, and he never mentioned that its removal had no effect on autism rates.

    Phew. I’ve got lots more. (This took about 45 minutes to compose and it’s just one page. This skepticism business is tough.)

  115. #115 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 14, 2011

    Andrew Wakefield MB,BS, FRCS, FRCPath, SO …

    (SO = Struck Off)

    Nice ring to it …

    It’s what the turd deserved.

    Incidentally – UK comedy duo involving two medical graduates (one of whom is a general medical practitioner in the NHS) … name: Struck Off And Die!

    Neat!

  116. #116 MartinM
    April 14, 2011

    e said at the meetings where they decided to remove it, many of the doctors present were arguing that it shouldn’t be removed even though they would never give it to their own children…

    Isn’t that just RFK Jr’s old lie about the Simpsonwood conference, in which he took the one guy who actually thought there might be something to the thimerosal-autism link and tried to pretend he was representative of the group?

  117. #117 Brian Morgan
    April 14, 2011

    UK Comedy Duo – one member is Dr Phil Hammond, who is Private Eye’s medical correspondent. Does he write the MD column? Can’t say for sure without doing more digging. Nevertheless iot does seem so as the latter column features pretty prominently on Dr Hammond’s website: which is here: http://drphilhammond.com/. One remarkable feature of this column is the report which you will find by doing a search on the home page with single word “Wakefield” which takes you to a lengthy apology published February 17th 2010 for the way Private Eye originally supported Wakefield and then moved 180 degrees.

    This is the opening paragraph: “M.D. writes: Private Eye got it wrong in its coverage of MMR. It gave undue prominence to unproven theories based on a small number of uncontrolled observations, and paid far less attention to the weight of evidence from large comparative studies that failed to find any association between MMR and autism. While the Eye cited potential conflicts of interest in many of the key supporters of MMR, it failed to point out any unethical or prejudicial behaviour by Andrew Wakefield.”

  118. #118 LW
    April 14, 2011

    So Wakefield isn’t antivax, *but* he brought up Thimerosal and “too many too soon” and evidently didn’t dispute the claim that “the autism epidemic exploded after they started routinely vaccinating 1 day olds for HepB”, all of claims throw doubt on his own claim that autism is caused by the MMR?

    That makes a lot of sense.

  119. #119 Omri
    April 14, 2011

    “I did ask him why he didn’t report Nicholas Chadwick’s negative PCR results for measles vaccine virus. He said he reported the positive results from the labs that got positive results. ”

    Wow. That’s just beautiful.

  120. #120 ArtK
    April 14, 2011

    “I did ask him why he didn’t report Nicholas Chadwick’s negative PCR results for measles vaccine virus. He said he reported the positive results from the labs that got positive results. “

    Wow. That’s just beautiful.

    Isn’t it? To anyone but the faithful he just said “Yes, I did commit fraud.”

  121. #121 Todd W.
    April 14, 2011

    @John Santos

    If you write up your notes into a blog post, I’d be happy to host you as a guest writer at Harpocrates Speaks.

    Regarding measles immunity being passed in the breast milk, there was something from the MN Dept. of Health that in a case a few years ago, the mother had recently been vaccinated against measles. Officials believed that her antibodies to the vaccine rendered her child’s immunization ineffective, and so the child was not immune to the virus.

  122. #122 LW
    April 14, 2011

    “To anyone but the faithful he just said ‘Yes, I did commit fraud.’”

    That was how I read it too. Amazing that anyone would defend him after that admission.

  123. #123 LW
    April 14, 2011

    “To anyone but the faithful he just said ‘Yes, I did commit fraud.’”

    That was how I read it too. Amazing that anyone would defend him after that admission.

  124. #124 Brian Morgan
    April 14, 2011

    “He said he reported the positive results from the labs that got positive results.”

    Does anyone already know how many negative or neutral results there were that he did not report?

  125. #125 Brian Morgan
    April 14, 2011

    There’s a great deal of literature about mothers who have contracted measles passing passive immunity to their offspring, which lasts 12 months, but mothers who have not had measles (either because measles is less than widespread where they live or because they have been vaccinated) do not pass on passive immunity and the babies need to get first injection of measles vaccine earlier.

    So will some say from this that measles vaccination should be halted and measles be allowed to flourish so that babies are endowed with natural passive immunity? Or should we stay with wide-scale vaccination and for the earlier first dose?

  126. #126 LW
    April 14, 2011

    “So will some say from this that measles vaccination should be halted and measles be allowed to flourish so that babies are endowed with natural passive immunity” … for the first 12 months, after which measles is free to flourish *in them*.

  127. #127 W. Kevin Vicklund
    April 14, 2011

    Does anyone already know how many negative or neutral results there were that he did not report?

    Sufficient to publish a [doctoral?] thesis.

  128. #128 Aj
    April 14, 2011

    Brian @ 117

    Yes, Dr Phil Hammond is MD.

    It’s would be interesting to know who was responsible for the pro-Wakefield coverage in Private Eye, but I doubt they’ll be outing themselves any time soon.

  129. #129 Denice Walter
    April 14, 2011

    @ John Santos: Great work, young man!!( That ” medical establishment” quip is precious!) How many attended?

    I would have only one question for the Struck-off One ( and it’s basically the same question I would throw at any woo-meister):
    “Why should I believe *you*?”
    I heard of him prior to any investigation and it just didn’t “sit well” with my education. Then evidence was overcovered, experts spoke ,the GMC ruled, etc. all jelling with my own earliest suspicions.

    To believe his yarn, I would have to suspend belief about too many things that currently make sense to me. In their place, I would need erect an over-arching Anglo-American medical-pharmaceutical-media-educational-governmental *Cosa Nostra* hell-bent on destroying him and his findings. I would have to agree with his supporters- including major-league woo-meisters like those I regularly slam- and distressed parents motivated by a need to believe in external causation for their travails. I would have to believe he’s *not* in it for the money. I would have to stop listening to the nagging internal voice that tells me,” Something’s not right here.” It’s a snake-oil show. And he’s right up their with the “best” of them.

  130. #130 John Santos
    April 14, 2011

    MartinM, he did mention the Simpsonwood conference. I think it was part of his answer to that question. So most likely you are correct. Of course, conspiracy theories are even more malleable than mercury, so maybe they have a different argument now.

    Todd W, I absolutely need to do my taxes today, so I’m desperately looking for a diversion… May take you up on it.

    When he answered daedalus2u’s question, he said the Lancet paper didn’t mention *anything* about measles being present, that was all in the 2nd paper (I didn’t remember ever hearing about a 2nd paper, was this also published? The Wikipedia article on him lists a Sept, 2000 paper “Am. J. Gastroenterol. 95 (9): 2285–95″ which was also retracted. This paper has many of the same authors as the Lancet paper, but also includes JJ O’Leary, who Wakefield cited as being the pathologist who found the measles virus in the samples.

    Finally, just another nice tidbit/teaser: during his summation, Wakefield said that it was the parent’s insistence that their autistic kids had digestive problems that their doctors were ignoring (would any GP actually ignore the condition of a child who had persistent diarrhea 12 times a day, as Wakefield claimed?) who brought their kids to him in the first place, and that their parental instinct had been right, and that their instincts were also correct that vaccines were causing the autism, and that the “Mommy Instinct” (he actually used this term) was one of the most powerful and accurate forces in nature, honed over millions of years of evolution, and totally trumped mere things like “evidence” and “science” and “medical experience.” (Scare quotes mine, not his.) If the talk does go up online, and you can’t bear to listen to the whole thing, FF to the end (just before the questions) and watch this part.

  131. #131 Todd W.
    April 14, 2011

    @John Santos

    Sounds good. You know how to get a hold of me.

    Did anyone happen to get any pictures from the event? If so, would you mind sharing? You can get in touch with me through Harpocrates Speaks or antiantivax.flurf.net.

  132. #132 Zach
    April 14, 2011

    It was a shit show, a smoke and mirrors adventure into the mind of a man grasping at straws to protect his destroyed name. He’s a terrible scientist and a liar; that he didn’t spend the full two hours apologizing for his unethical scientific practices and supporting his myths marked the talk a disgrace.

    I left when one of his followers claimed that autism was caused from a lack of antioxidants in the developing brain. These people are quacks, and shame on Jake Crosby for bringing them to our school.

  133. #133 Zach
    April 14, 2011

    It was a show, a smoke and mirrors adventure into the mind of a man grasping at straws to protect his destroyed name. He’s a terrible scientist and a liar; that he didn’t spend the full two hours apologizing for his unethical scientific practices and supporting his myths marked the talk a disgrace.

    I left when one of his followers claimed that autism was caused from a lack of antioxidants in the developing brain. These people are quacks, and shame on Jake Crosby for bringing them to our school.

  134. #134 Zach
    April 14, 2011

    It was a show, a smoke and mirrors adventure into the mind of a man grasping at straws to protect his destroyed name. He’s a terrible scientist and a liar; that he didn’t spend the full two hours apologizing for his unethical scientific practices and supporting his myths marked the talk a disgrace.

    I left when one of his followers claimed that autism was caused from a lack of antioxidants in the developing brain. These people are quacks, and shame on Jake Crosby for bringing them to our school.

  135. #135 Brian Morgan
    April 14, 2011

    Are you saying you are also at Brandeis, Zach?

  136. #136 Prometheus
    April 14, 2011

    Zach comments:

    “These people are quacks, and shame on Jake Crosby for bringing them to our school.”

    I wouldn’t be too hard on Jake Crosby – he’s just a catspaw. Shame on the people who use him.

    Prometheus

  137. #137 W. Kevin Vicklund
    April 14, 2011

    When he answered daedalus2u’s question, he said the Lancet paper didn’t mention *anything* about measles being present, that was all in the 2nd paper (I didn’t remember ever hearing about a 2nd paper, was this also published? The Wikipedia article on him lists a Sept, 2000 paper “Am. J. Gastroenterol. 95 (9): 2285–95″ which was also retracted. This paper has many of the same authors as the Lancet paper, but also includes JJ O’Leary, who Wakefield cited as being the pathologist who found the measles virus in the samples.

    Yep, that’s the paper. When Nicholas Chadwick refused to conclude that the samples had measles (writing it up in his thesis), Wakefield sent the samples to O’Leary.

  138. #138 Mikey Gesus
    April 14, 2011

    Holy crap John, great breakdown of the talk! You are seriously awesome.

  139. #139 lilady
    April 15, 2011

    @ John Santos and other reporters: you guys are great, and we applaud your detailed notes about the meeting. Come back often to post here…we love young skeptical minds.

  140. #140 augustine
    April 15, 2011

    Lilady

    we love young skeptical minds.

    Now that’s funny right there.

  141. #141 lilady
    April 15, 2011

    I said “we love young skeptical minds” (We don’t love blathering troll idiots who are biased, unproductive, uneducated, who nitpick and cherry pick, unemployed on the dole….and boring). Get the hint?

  142. #142 John Santos
    April 15, 2011

    @Lilady thanks but I’m not sure how much longer I can get away with “young”.

    I really appreciate more than ever all the work people like Orac and Steve Novella do. I just spent 4 hours typing in and organizing my notes and they are nowhere close to being ready for prime time. There are about 100 things that I should research before posting. Making stuff up sure is easier.

    P.S. re Janet Levitan (whose name I misspelled earlier), she’s been here before.

  143. #143 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    @John Santos

    The “here before” link doesn’t work for me – but it’s my chance also to ask where is there a list of HTML tags that will work for this site.

  144. #144 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    I tried the tag for bold before and after “here before” but the whole sentence went bold. This time I tried it before and after “bold” and it still made text bold right to end. Also how do I put URL and block quote tags in, please.

  145. #145 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    I think I’ve got it. I left the / out!! AAAHHH. And I’ve found a list of tags I need.

  146. #146 MartinM
    April 15, 2011

    Brian: your bold tags didn’t work because you used two opening tags instead of opening and closing tags. You want <b>this</b>, not <b>this<b>.

    Blockquotes:

    <blockquote> quoted text </blockquote> gives

    quoted text

    URLs: <a href=”http://www.scienceblogs.com/insolence”>Link text</a> gives Link text.

  147. #147 Todd W.
    April 15, 2011

    For those who are interested, there’s an article up in the Brandeis Hoot on the event.

  148. #148 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    Were the pictures of children shown with consent of parents? And the report quotes this “I’m just a doctor trying to do a job,” . Well no. Not a doctor any more. Not even an MD or PhD doctor.

  149. #149 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    A strongly critical editorial in Brandeis Hoot.

    http://thebrandeishoot.com/articles/10194

  150. #150 lilady
    April 15, 2011

    @ Todd W. Thanks for the article from the Hoot. The Hoot, it appears provided an unbiased report of the meeting. Let’s see how Jake Crosby reports the meeting for Age of Autism….

  151. #151 Denice Walter
    April 15, 2011

    @ Todd W.:
    @ Brian Morgan:

    Thanks so much for that link! I enjoyed it so much but now have to clean my keyboard because I just spewed tea all over it when I read that “80″ attended- including our crew. Only 30 supporters? Best laugh all week ( and I have *really* funny friends). I shall laugh all about this all day.
    AW must feel miserable. Just desserts, I’d say.

  152. #152 lilady
    April 15, 2011

    @ John Santos: I assumed you are a student at Brandeis, maybe you are faculty. In any case, it’s nice to be called “young”.

    Thanks for the “heads Up” Janet Levitan link…she is big time involved with homeopathy for kids and has a web page discussing “exemptions” from immunizations for school aged children.

  153. #153 Chris
    April 15, 2011

    OOh, I just found that Orac wrote about Dr. Levitan telling parents to lie about religion over three years ago!

  154. #154 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    I’ve spotted this Dr Levitan link here on ScienceBlogs

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2007/10/using_religion_to_avoid_vaccination_revi.php

  155. #155 John Santos
    April 15, 2011

    No, I’m not a student; just someone who lives and works nearby.

    The article Chris and Brian linked to was the one I was trying to link. I’ll try again just to see what happens: Janet Levitan .

    Note to others and self: It looks like you have to quote the URL after the href= in the tag.

  156. #156 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    @John Santos I’m learning how to link. Some bloggy sites give you a line-up of useful tags. Are there any somewhere on this one or do the hosts think we must know them if we post here even if our skills are totally somewhere different? I am trying – well my friends and others do tell me so.

  157. #157 Militant Agnostic
    April 15, 2011

    Brian @156

    Below the comment box on Pharyngula (on science blogs) it shows you how to use the more common html commands. Be prepared for a long scroll to reach the bottom of the discussion there :).

  158. #158 Chris
    April 15, 2011

    Imbedded link (substitute less than and greater than brackets for square brackets):
    [a href="www.PubMed.gov"]The Public Medical Index[/a]

  159. #159 Brian Morgan
    April 15, 2011

    @Militant Agnostic and @Chris – I will try in due course and thanks greatly.

  160. #160 Todd W.
    April 17, 2011

    I put John’s full post on Wakefield’s talk up at Harpocrates Speaks, for those who are interested. John was very detailed, and I think that his notes will allow for a fair bit more analysis than the pieces from the Brandeis Hoot or the Boston Globe allow.

    Orac, maybe you can find some material in there, as well!

  161. #161 Denice Walter
    April 17, 2011

    @ Todd W. and John Santos:

    Great job! You are formidable!
    I see that my “heads up” re Wakefield’s Monday prep on radio was replicated ( unlike his project) @ Brandeis: no recruitment by lawyers, the toxin gambit ( e.g. Al.), so-called “international replication” of his work, an imbroglio of conspiracies. AW outlined his entire crappy position in 15 minutes flat ( it doesn’t show up taped @ PRN site for some reason) I feel good.

  162. #162 lilady
    April 17, 2011

    I’m still waiting for the article by Jake Crosby detailing the overwhelming support of Andy at Brandeis. Today at Age of Autism, Jake Crosby has provided the Brandeis Hoot article and invited comments….which are very “interesting”. I suppose Andy’s consigliere Jake, cannot figure out how to “spin” the meeting at Rapaporte Hall to make Andy look good.

  163. #163 dt
    April 18, 2011

    Slightly off topic, but I was checking what Wakefield had lined up in other meetings and looked at the Autism One conference website for info about their 2011 conference.

    I noted they are selling DVDs of the proceedings of the 2010 conference.
    http://www.autismone.org/conference_dvds

    To get the DVD you ned to shell out a few bucks short of $1000.

    I guess that for parents who can afford $10,000 a shot on stem cell tratment this is small beer.

  164. #164 Brian Morgan
    April 18, 2011

    I see a number of less expensive videos with AJ Wakefield speaking for either £17 or $23.

  165. #165 Brian Morgan
    April 18, 2011

    $17 or $23 – where’s the post commenting edit button?

  166. #166 Brian Morgan
    April 18, 2011

    Age of Autism editor Jake Crosby has yet to post a link to the Brandeis Hoot editorial piece criticising him (without naming him) for not inviting a balancing voice to the platform that day. Also one of the comments one hears repeatedly (and just posted to AoA) is that AJW has lost his “country of birth” – that’s surely not the case. Living in the US is a matter of choice isn’t it? He could return to live in the UK at any time, couldn’t he? Or is there something going on we don’t know about. There are many unanswered questions. What happened to the appeal against the GMC ruling? What happened to his complaint against the Sunday Times which went to the Press Complaints Commission?

    I emailed AJW on February 7th, as a journalist, asking for comments but no response I’m afraid.

  167. #167 Todd W.
    April 18, 2011

    @Brian Morgan

    Yeah, Wakefield is being a bit hyperbolic. If he chose to, he could very easily go back to the UK. Granted, they’ve got his number there, so he might find employment in his field slightly troublesome. But, he has not been banned from entry into the country. As far as I know, he still has UK citizenship. The only thing keeping him from living there is him.

  168. #168 Antaeus Feldspar
    April 18, 2011

    You know what might be fun? Printing up a “Wakefield Bingo” card that can be passed out anywhere he’s going to speak, each square containing one of his frequently made false claims and linked to an explanation below of why the claim is false. I’m pretty sure we could pull together something suitable working together; anyone else interested?

  169. #169 Chris
    April 18, 2011

    Todd W.:

    Yeah, Wakefield is being a bit hyperbolic. If he chose to, he could very easily go back to the UK.

    As a matter of fact I saw something on the BadScience Forum where he was there recently in the UK at some conference, ah here it is:
    http://www.ecomed.org.uk/scientific-conference-11-march-featuring-speaker-dr-andrew-wakefield

    Oh, look! They have him listed as: Dr Andrew Wakefield, USA

  170. #170 Denice Walter
    April 18, 2011

    Antaeus Feldspar – see mine @ 161; also first day of thread, re the “tragic” one (@ Todd W.) What’s mine is yours.

  171. #171 Denice Walter
    April 18, 2011

    @ Antaeus – see esp. mine @ 36,42, 49, this thread. I gotta go.

  172. #172 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 19, 2011

    Aj: “Yes, Dr Phil Hammond is MD.”

    Not quite.

    He’s a medical practitioner, though, which current General Medical Council registration. He earned his BA (Hons) in pre-clinical Medical Sciences from Cambridge and did his clinical studies at one of the London Hospitals so that might mean that he’s MB, BS with the University of London – these being the registrable qualifications with the GMC.

    He writes under the pseudonym ‘MD’, though …

    Todd: “As far as I know, he still has UK citizenship. The only thing keeping him from living there is him.”

    Exactly. He’s being a twat.

  173. #173 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 19, 2011

    Re: Struck Off And Die…

    Only one of them is a medical graduate and that is Phil Hammond. I get the impression that Tony Slattery read Mediaeval & Modern Languages – at Cambridge.

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