Tell Congress to get to work on stopping the non-existent autism epidemic!

In a poll conducted by yours truly, it was found that an overwhelming percentage of parents of autistic children want Congress to stop what they’re doing and do congressional hearing after congressional hearing to look into the non-existent autism epidemic. Those parents said that Congress should look into what is essentially a mirage and talking point from the anti-vaccine syndicate, and that Congress should forget about anything else in their agenda. Furthermore, parents want Congress to forget about any kind of oversight of the educational system because “our lost little children,” as one parent put it, “won’t benefit from educational programs that seek to have them be productive members of society. What they need is one more congressional hearing to push the idea that vaccines are bad.” Parents also suggested that Congress immediately halt the vaccination program in the country until any and all vaccines are proven to be 100% safe and 100% effective by Bob, a man who sits in a darkened room of his house at 2am in the morning, furiously typing into a word processing program to then copy and paste his thousand-word-long missives into his MySpace blog. Along the same lines, other things that are essential to us but not 100% safe and 100% effective must also go, one parent suggested. “I mean, like, there’s all this nitrogen in the atmosphere. Can’t we, like, get rid of it and see if autism rates go down?” he asked.

I’m joking, of course. I didn’t conduct such a poll. And I didn’t interview anyone that deluded. But if I did, I can assure you that most parents of autistic children are certainly not amused by what the Canary Party wants. The Cannery Canary Party has been lobbying one particular congressman to have yet another round of hearings in congress into the “autism epidemic” that is being equated to children being kidnapped at gun point and sold off as slaves.

Not that it will do them, the anti-vaccine types, any good. Thankfully, we live in a society where Congress doesn’t make up the rules of science, and the last time they had a hearing, they ended up alienating the kid, so much so that he decided to go all “turncoat” on them and publish private emails. Not only that, but the kid’s apparent new mentor took it one step further:

“Throughout the discussions with Autism people about what I call the “Autism leadership problem” one other situation kept coming up – the relationship between Mark Blaxill and Jennifer VanDerHorst-Larson. Both Blaxill and Larson have children with Autism – and both seem to be married to someone else – that someone else who takes care of the autistic children while Mark and Jennifer (Ken and Barbie) travel together, endlessly, running, and/or influencing, various organizations (SafeMinds, Facing Autism, the Canary Party, Age of Autism), all of which claim to speak for the Autism community.

I’m told that the night before the infamous Congressional Committee on Oversight and Government Reform committee hearing on November 29th, 2012, the one Jake Crosby talks about in his article, that Elyse Blaxill, Mark’s wife, confronted Mark and Jennifer about their “relationship.” Mark was quoted as saying “that was the worst night of my life.” I’m told that Capitol Police were notified to be on alert that Mark’s wife might try to disrupt the televised hearing.”

If they lie about vaccine and autism science, surely, they don’t have a problem telling on each other’s indiscretions. Who is Jennifer Larson? Why, she is the woman in this picture posted on the Cannary Party’s Facebook page recently:

jennifer_larson_issaMs. Larson is also one of the figureheads in the Canary Party. (The other one is Ginger Taylor, who, as you can see, is apparently a disembodied head of her own.) She apparently likes to take money donated to the Canary Party and use it to lobby congressmen to her cause and to stay in comfort when she travels to autism health freedom conferences:

“One expense seems more clear: On 6/15/2012, expenses attributed to Canary Party president Jennifer Larson amounted to $1,541.42 for another Health Freedom Expo hotel stay, this time at the Hilton. Health Freedom Expos are typically 3 day events.”

It must be nice to have that kind of cash on hand.

Of all the problems that autistics face day-to-day in this country, finding out if vaccines caused their autism is not one of them. That question has been settled. That conspiracy theory doesn’t hold any more water than the conspiracies about UFO’s, GMO’s, the Illuminati, or some such hold. It is crazy to think that we need to spend that kind of money and resources to have congressional hearings on something that has been settled by science.

What’s next? Hearings on whether or not we landed on the Moon?

If people like the members of the Canary Party or any other “health freedom” movement were really concerned about autistic children, they’d stop this theater of always wanting to blame the vaccines and move on to something more, you know, based on reality, something that doesn’t make them sound so nutty. They would stop their threats of violence and death, their misogyny, and they would work toward solutions that are based on evidence and true scientific knowledge. But they won’t, because that would crumble their worlds. It would make the monsters under their beds real and tangible.

I mean, what’s better, to work with other parents of autistic children, or… Or this:

Porno fantasies. Because THAT helps autistic children a lot.

Porno fantasies. Because THAT helps autistic children a lot.

13 thoughts on “Tell Congress to get to work on stopping the non-existent autism epidemic!

  1. I’m willing to bet that each of the member groups from this “coalition” was notified about tomorrow’s Hearing and will be sending representatives to testify:

    “Autism Policy Reform Coalition Launches Legislative Drive to Improve Federal Government’s Response to the Nation’s Worsening Autism Crisis”

    Take a look at the membership of this Autism Policy Reform Coalition (A.P.R.C.). Every one of the members are crank anti-vaccine groups:

    About the Autism Policy Reform Coalition:

    The Autism Policy Reform Coalition (APRC) has constituted itself as organizations in service of people with Autism who are coming together for the purpose of proposing meaningful legislation that will make a difference in the lives of those with Autism – their families, physicians, communities, and our nation. The following organizations are represented as APRC: National Autism Association (NAA), Generation Rescue, Talk About Curing Autism (TACA), Autism is Medical (AIM), Autism Trust U.S.A., D.A.I.R. Foundation (Defending Academic Integrity and Research), Safe Minds, Thinking Moms Revolution (TMR).

  2. Do we know that the hearing will directly involve any autism groups? I know there are people and groups who seem to think that Oversight works for them, but that isn’t really the case.

    What if this is a hearing to go over the GAO report last year in preparation for the reauthorization of the Combating Autism Act? I.e. a legitimate hearing (as much as these are legitimate and not political grandstanding).

  3. I should think it to be glaringly obvious that this 30 minute session is not going to even vaguely resemble what Larson, Taylor, D’Olmsted, etc., seem to expect or, at least, be trying to sell it as.

    • Narad, I thought that it was only a half hour session too but it’s not, the committee is going to split up to have simultaneous hearings. Oh and oddly (also) no autistic self-advocates were invited to this alleged autism hearing.

      • No anti-vaxxers were invited to the hearings either, which they complained about on “Age of Autism.”

  4. [fax to each of the subcommittee members]

    Dear []

    Re: Examining the Federal Response to Autism Spectrum Disorders May 20 2014

    Around 3 pm PDT Friday, May 16th 2014, I became aware that the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform’s Subcommittee on Government Operations had scheduled a hearing for Tuesday, May 20, 2014 at 9 am. The subject of the hearing is Examining the Federal Response to Autism Spectrum Disorders.

    There are no Witness and Testimony Documents available on the above website.
    There are no Hearing Documents available on the above website.
    There are no Topics listed on the above website.

    It was too late in the day for me reach anyone at the HCOGR office by telephone.

    I have communicated with a number of adult autistic self-advocates. All were unaware of the scheduled hearing.

    I have communicated with the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network’s President, Ari Ne’eman, who was a witness at the House Committee on Government Operations and Reform Autism Hearings November 29, 2012. He was unaware of the May 20, 2014 hearing.

    I have not heard back from the executive director of the Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership (GRASP), Kate Palmer. Their office was closed for the weekend by the time I was able to send a message.

    I have not heard back from the President of the Autism Women’s Network, Sharon daVanport. Their office was closed for the weekend by the time I was able to send a message.

    It is unconscionable to have a hearing on the “federal response” to any disability, without including organizations that represent individuals with that disability.

    I respectfully ask that this hearing be postponed until autistic self-advocates can be included in the hearing.

  5. This hearing is NOT the full Oversight and Government Reform Committee (the one at which Ari Ne’eman and John Carley testified on November 29, 2012 link:

    It is in the subcommittee on Government Operations.

    Here is the mission for the Subcommittee:
    “The Subcommittee on Government Operations, oversees the efficiency and management of government operations and activities, working to ensure public access to information through its oversight of the Freedom of Information Act, the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Presidential Records Act, and the National Archives and Records Administration. The Subcommittee has primary jurisdiction over federal property, federal information technology and data standards.”

    According to my sources, the purpose of the hearing is to ” look at the redundancies in autism research.”

    I recommend that autistic self-advocates and their allies should [call] [fax] [otherwise communicate] with the subcommittees members to

    1. Commend them for looking at redundancies in autism causation research
    2. Emphasize that research into the vaccine theory of autism causation is very much a redundancy
    3. (If you are willing) to talk about underfunded (ie, not redundant) research into the issues closest to you.

    Members of the House Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee for the 113th Congress (2014), Subcommittee on Government Operations:

    Committee Chair: John Mica (see Florida for contact information)

    Justin Amash (see Michigan)
    Gerald E. Connelly (see Virginia)
    Jim Cooper (see Tennessee)
    Mark Meadows (see North Carolina )
    Michael Turner (see Ohio)

    NOTE: if you are a constituent of the Congressional Representatives on the Subcommittee on Government Operations of the House Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee, you can use the email link. Otherwise, you will not be able to use the form. You can use Facebook and Twitter. Anyone can fax a message to the committee members, and that may be the most effective way to communicate, as faxes end up as … well, piles of documents.

    John Mica R-FL-7 (St. Augustine, Palm Coast, Ormond Beach, Daytona Beach, Deltona, Casselberry)(Subcommittee Chair, Government)
    2187 Rayburn HOB
    Washington, DC 20515
    P: (202) 225-4035 F: (202) 226-0821

    State: Michigan MI J
    Justin Amash R-MI-3 (Cedar Springs, Grand Rapids, Belding, Ionia, Portland, Hastings, Battle Creek, Albion)
    114 Cannon HOB,
    Washington, DC 20515
    P: (202) 225-3831 F: (202) 225-5144

    North Carolina NC
    Mark Meadows R-NC-11 (Brevard, Waynesville, Hendersonville, Asheville, Black Mountain)

    1516 Longworth HOB
    Washington, DC 20515
    P: (202) 225-6401 F: (202) 226-6422

    Ohio OH
    Michael Turner R-OH-10 (Dayton and Warren, Clinton, and Highland counties)
    2239 Rayburn
    HOB Washington, DC 20515
    P: (202) 225-6465 F: (202) 225-6754

    Tennessee TN
    Jim Cooper D-TN-5 (Goodlettsville, Nashville, Green Hill, Mount Juliet, Lebanon)
    1536 Longworth HOB
    Washington, D.C. 20515
    P: 202-225-4311 F: 202-226-1035

    Virginia VA
    Gerald E. Connolly D-VA-11 (Mount Vernon, West Springfield, Annandale, Dale City, Burke)
    424 Cannon HOB
    Washington, D.C. 20515
    P: (202) 225-1492 F: (202) 225-3071

  6. Yesterday afternoon, a friend emailed that photo of Jennifer Larson with Congressman Issa and the notification about the Hearing. I checked the Congressional Committee on Government Oversight and Reform Calendar to confirm that the Committee posted had just posted the notice about the hearing. I also called the Committee at 202-225-5074 and spoke with a legislative aide and requested an agenda and a list of individuals who would be testifying at Tuesday’s Hearing.

    Need I describe how that aide stonewalled me? I then registered a complaint with that aide, describing my displeasure with the short notice (two days before the Hearing), and the apparent deliberate lack of transparency by that Committee and by Committee Chairman Darrell Issa.

    • Thanks for that, lilady. I’ll be giving them a call on Monday to get more details and plan my Tuesday. I’ll try hard to be there for the hearing. There has to be at least one or two of us without vested interests there.

      • I wish I could grab some time to get down there – looks like work is going to conflict…..

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