Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Jabberwocky of the Day : Reality Distortion

There are many other interesting things happening right now in the autism world that I should be writing about instead of this.  Things that are much more relevant such as the recent Korean prevalence study.  But, this is just so utterly ridiculous that I can't let it past.

First the background.  Apparently there is going to be an announcement later this morning about an investigation into autism and vaccines.  What the announcement is supposed to say is that autism is more than three times more common among the group of children compensated by the so-called vaccine court than it is the general population.  I am going to wait to see what the announcement actually says and what the data shows before jumping to any conclusions.

But, Left Brain Right Brain already has their reality distortion field in full-effect claiming that what is supposed to be a report in a "New York law school journal" is a  "legal battle" -
A news conference today will confirm that autism/anti-vaccine groups have lost the scientific battle for the idea that vaccines cause autism as they turn to the legal battle instead.
Never mind the fact that the recent US Supreme Court decision effectively closed down all legal avenues.  Even if the claims were exactly as stated there is no legal way to make the challenge. So I don't know what possible "legal battle" could be mounted.

But then it gets even stranger when LBRB claims that the so-called vaccine court would never distort the relationship between vaccines and autism and that autism isn't defined by its behaviors -
The report – at least in this news story – doesn’t seem to mention how many children were compensated for having autism. As we all kow ‘autism like symptoms’ or ‘symptoms and behavior consistent with autism.’ might be just that – but they are not autism. If they were I’m sure the court would’ve reported it.
Both of the claims are just straight up wrong.

There have been at least 3 cases where the vaccine court compensated children for their autism and went out of their way to avoid saying what they were compensating for was autism.  Perhaps the most notable was the case of Bailey Banks where the court basically invented a new medical condition, non-autistic pdd-nos, to avoid making the link.  From the decision -
These facts likewise satisfy the Althen test set forth above. Petitioner’s theory of PDD caused by vaccine-related ADEM causally connects the vaccination and the ultimate injury, and does so by explaining a logical sequence of cause and effect showing that the vaccination was the ultimate reason for the injury.
PDD is always autism yet the title of the ruling is "Non-autistic developmental delay".  If that isn't an attempt to avoid calling something autism, I don't know what it is.

Then there is the idea that "behavior consistent with autism" isn't autism.  Yet autism is defined solely on the basis of behaviors.  If you have the enough of the behaviors of autism then, BY DEFINITION, you have autism.  If you don't have enough, then you don't have it.  There is absolutely nothing in the clinical definition of autism that makes cases whether autism was caused by genetics, environment, vaccines, or little green men from mars.

I have to wonder how LBRB can champion the the idea that there is no "autism epidemic" because "autistic traits" are present, yet unrecognized, in the general population and then turn around and claim this set of "autistic traits" aren't autism because a vaccine might have caused them.

The cognitive dissonance that they experience over there must be stunning.


  1. "behavior consistent with autism" isn't autism.

    Yea, they took that line with Cho too.

    And behaviour of the bat shit crazy kind that both my wonderful self and Michelle Dawson display in spades also isn't to be allowed in the Cannon.

  2. Heh.

    What level of dissonance is required to simultaneously believe that Hannah Poling doesn't have autism, but one in 38 Korean children do have autism. That spectacular!

    - pD

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  4. I think at a 1 in 4 female to male ratio, you'd have about 1 in 28 boys with a PDD...

  5. You don't need a label to be batshit crazy. You just need a psychiatrist to get one. You CAN be batshit without a label.

    I don't know why, but this non-autistic pdd-nos made me laugh. "Creative" labels, I'd say. Another word for lying. When it suits us....