The CDC, Vaccines and Autism

by ANNE DACHEL

I listened to ABC NEWS tonight waiting for the story about the new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on vaccines with mercury and autism. I watched commercials for prescription pharmaceutical products like Advair and wondered what influence the drug industry has on ABC NEWS. The ABC report on the CDC study again dismissed any suspicion that the mercury used in vaccination is linked to autism.

NBC NEWS told us that even though the CDC cautions us that the new study isn’t about autism, it does show that the mercury-based vaccine preservative thimerosal is safe. NBC NEWS made it look like "some parent groups" who do claim vaccines are the cause of autism were up against the federal health agencies and sound medical science. Mercury, a known neurotoxin, in "high doses" of exposure back in the 1990s hasn’t done any harm.

NBC NEWS told us that the New England Journal of Medicine had just published the results of this study by the CDC on thimerosal and it showed no problem in certain ability areas among children exposed to mercury in their vaccines. It’s another study after years of similar studies that haven’t settled anything.

NBC News did include Laura Bono from the National Autism Association who asked why the very agency that owns patents on vaccines and runs the vaccine program is also in charge of vaccine safety. Robert Bazell of NBC News seemed unflustered by this and he failed to answer Laura’s question. He pointed to the CDC study as "quality research," published by the New England Journal of Medicine. Bazell told us that until we have answers as to the cause of autism, "everything has to be on the table" –everything it seems, except vaccines.

On the CBS NEWS site, the link to WebMD had this comment: "Thimerosal in vaccines has not affected children’s brains or behaviors, the CDC says. Thimerosal is a mercury-based preservative once common in vaccines. It’s now found only in small amounts in some flu vaccines. However, thimerosal was once used in most vaccines given to children." This refers to the 25 mcg of mercury in the flu vaccine given to children ages three years and older. The "small amounts" in "some" flu shots, is actually in ninety percent of the flu vaccine available and amazingly, the "small amounts" is, according to the EPA, is meant for someone who weighs 550 pounds

Nothing is new here. The CDC, the agency that runs the vaccine program, again has again produced a population study that shows vaccines aren’t linked to neurological problems in children. The epidemic number of children with autism isn’t even mentioned. The fact the CDC has an obvious bias in showing that vaccines haven’t damaged hundreds of thousands of children because they also run the vaccine program isn’t noted. Dr. Paul Offit, who is described only as from Philadelphia Children’s Hospital, is included on the ABC NEWS report telling us that it was a mistake to ever remove mercury from vaccines. ABC NEWS
didn’t think it was important to mention that Dr. Offit is himself a vaccine patent holder and is a member of the advisory committee that recommends the childhood vaccine schedule.

We are to believe the endless pharmaceutical advertising dollars that ABC, NBC, and CBS News get along with the New England Journal of Medicine and WebMD hasn’t possibly influenced their reporting.

Does it occur to anyone at ABC, NBC, or CBS NEWS that asking the CDC about vaccines is like asking Philip Morris about the link between smoking and lung cancer?

Network news shows seem intent on making this a contest between parents and science. Why isn’t one of the networks able to find a single scientist among the growing number of research experts whose work does call thimerosal into question?

The media is eager to dismiss the claim that thimerosal causes autism and makes no mention of the explosion in numbers from one in 10,000 in the 1970s to one in every 150 children today, including one in every 94 boys. No one can give us a reasonable explanation for the epidemic increase, but no matter–be reassured, autism isn’t the result of all the mercury these children received. Furthermore, the fact that one in every six school children now has a diagnosis of a learning problems like attention deficit, isn’t included.

Maybe someone at ABC, NBC, or CBS NEWS should tell us why we should be so confident that it’s safe to inject mercury into children when the CDC can never show us the one test that matters. Why is no one able to convince us with the rigorous testing originally done on thimerosal BEFORE it was ever allowed in our children’s vaccines? Why isn’t anyone demanding to see it?

If anyone looked, they’d find that Eli Lilly Pharmaceutical Company invented thimerosal. They alone tested it on 22 patients back in 1930 who were all dead at the end of the study. No matter—Eli Lilly said it was safe and after the creation of the FDA, its use was simply continued.

What the news networks don’t tell us is that maybe all these endless population studies are damage control–a desperate attempt, after the fact, to disprove a scientific fact: Mercury is the second deadliest element on Earth and a known neurotoxin.

ABC, NBC, and CBS NEWS need to be reminded that this type of epidemiological study isn’t new. Studies like this were made famous back in the 1940s and 50s by the tobacco industry which used them to show that smoking didn’t cause lung cancer.

The networks told parents of autistic children that they should be reassured by the latest CDC study, but that’s hardly likely to happen. Parents who watched their normally progressing children regress into autism after vaccinations have heard it all before. All these sources, resplendent with drug company ads, lack a lot of credibility.

The media continues to give the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention oversight over itself and this will go on as long as the pharma advertising influence is there. All the parents who’ve again been told by ABC, NBC, and CBS NEWS that is still safe to inject mercury into children, look forward to how the networks will explain things in the next few years as more and more of the generation of children with autism become the generation of adults with autism, dependent on the taxpayers for their support and care. The one thing that ABC, NBC, and CBS NEWS can’t reassure us about is that while one in every 150 children in the U.S. has autism, one in every 150 adults doesn’t. The CDC, famous for population studies, has never been able to produce one that can find them.

Anne McElroy Dachel lives in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. She can be reached at: amdachel@msn.com

Like What You’ve Read? Support CounterPunch
August 04, 2015
Vincent J. Roscigno
University Bureaucracy as Organized Crime
Paul Street
Bernie Sanders’ Top Five Race Problems: the Whiteness of Nominal Socialism
Ramzy Baroud
The Palestinian Bubble and the Burning of Toddler, Ali Dawabsha
Herbert Dyer, Jr.
Is White Supremacy a Mental Disorder?
Pepe Escobar
Reshuffling Eurasia’s Energy Deck — Iran, China and Pipelineistan
L. Michael Hager
The Battle Over BDS
Eric Draitser
Puerto Rico: Troubled Commonwealth or Debt Colony?
Benjamin Willis
The New Cubanologos: What’s in a Word?
Matt Peppe
60 Minutes Provides Platform for US Military
Binoy Kampmark
The Turkish Mission: Reining in the Kurds
Eoin Higgins
Teaching Lessons of White Supremacy in Prime-Time: Blackrifice in the Post-Apocalyptic World of the CW’s The 100
Robert Dodge
The Nuclear World at 70
August 03, 2015
Joseph Mangano – Janette D. Sherman
The Atomic Era Turns 70, as Nuclear Hazards Endure
Nelson Valdes
An Internet Legend: the Pope, Fidel and the Black President
Robert Hunziker
The Perfectly Nasty Ocean Storm
Jack Dresser
The Case of Alison Weir: Two Palestinian Solidarity Organizations Borrow from Joe McCarthy’s Playbook
Ahmad Moussa
Incinerating Palestinian Children
Greg Felton
Greece Succumbs to Imperialist Banksterism
Binoy Kampmark
Stalling the Trans-Pacific Partnership: the Failure of the Hawai’i Talks
Ted Rall
My Letter to Nick Goldberg of the LA Times
Mark Weisbrot
New Greek Bailout Increases the Possibility of Grexit
Jose Martinez
Black/Hispanic/Women: a Leadership Crisis
Victor Grossman
German Know-Nothings Today
Patrick Walker
We’re Not Sandernistas: Reinventing the Wheels of Bernie’s Bandwagon
Norman Pollack
Moral Consequences of War: America’s Hegemonic Thirst
Ralph Nader
Republicans Support Massive Tax Evasion by Starving IRS Budget
Alexander Reid Ross
Colonial Pride and the Killing of Cecil the Lion
Suhayb Ahmed
What’s Happening in Britain: Jeremy Corbyn and the Future of the Labour Party
Weekend Edition
July 31-33, 2015
Jeffrey St. Clair
Bernie and the Sandernistas: Into the Void
John Pilger
Julian Assange: the Untold Story of an Epic Struggle for Justice
Roberto J. González – David Price
Remaking the Human Terrain: The US Military’s Continuing Quest to Commandeer Culture
Lawrence Ware
Bernie Sanders’ Race Problem
Andrew Levine
The Logic of Illlogic: Narrow Self-Interest Keeps Israel’s “Existential Threats” Alive
ANDRE VLTCHEK
Kos, Bodrum, Desperate Refugees and a Dying Child
Paul Street
“That’s Politics”: the Sandernistas on the Master’s Schedule
Ted Rall
How the LAPD Conspired to Get Me Fired from the LA Times
Mike Whitney
Power-Mad Erdogan Launches War in Attempt to Become Turkey’s Supreme Leader
Ellen Brown
The Greek Coup: Liquidity as a Weapon of Coercion
Stephen Lendman
Russia Challenges America’s Orwellian NED
Will Parrish
The Politics of California’s Water System
John Wight
The Murder of Ali Saad Dawabsha, a Palestinian Infant Burned Alive by Israeli Terrorists
Jeffrey Blankfort
Leading Bibi’s Army in the War for Washington
Mary Lou Singleton
Gender, Patriarchy, and All That Jazz
Robert Fantina
Israeli Missteps Take a Toll
Pete Dolack
Speculators Circling Puerto Rico Latest Mode of Colonialism