March 4, 2008


McCain steps into debate over cause of autism (Benedict Carey, March 4, 2008, IHT)

"It's indisputable that autism is on the rise among children," Senator John McCain said while campaigning recently in Texas. "The question is what's causing it. And we go back and forth and there's strong evidence that indicates that it's got to do with a preservative in vaccines."

With that comment, McCain marked his entry into one of the most politicized scientific issues in a generation.

Diagnoses are on the rise, not autism, and the notion that it's tied to vaccines isn't just ignorant but dangerous.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 4, 2008 8:49 AM

This gives him cover to go after Big Pharma.

Every one else knows Autism (like ADD) is caused by too much TV at an early age.

It fits the stats and timeline.

Posted by: Bruno at March 4, 2008 10:12 AM

He's just being a politician - telling his audience what they want to hear.

Posted by: Brandon at March 4, 2008 10:45 AM

Off Topic.

Bruno, or anyone else, how much TV is too much?

Thanks, Perry

Posted by: Perry at March 4, 2008 11:44 AM

Anybody else get the impression that McCain believes just about everything he reads in the NYTimes (unless it is critical of him)?

Posted by: QY at March 4, 2008 6:09 PM


While you may be attempting humor, the data are pretty interesting, if not conclusive.

First, reporting issues aside, there has been a large spike in autism. If timerisol is not the culprit (and it looks like it isn't) them SOMETHING else must be.

TV effects the brain. One need not even be a scientist to state the obvious.

Place a young developing brain in front of a streaming visual carnival too soon, and the wiring is bound to get screwed up.

The best possible scenario for conservatives, assuming the date holds, is that someone initiates a class action suit against the TV industry for making TV ubiquitous.

Next, if we can shame parents into quitting smoking for their kids, then we can use lawsuits to get the stupid idiots to force them to shut off the TVs when their toddlers are in the room.

OJ, if we can ban smoking and impose trains on the US to save the nation, then we can get the white trash and the dingbat soccer mom to take the TV out of the kid's room and the back of their minivan.

Then again, maybe daycare causes autism?

Posted by: Bruno at March 4, 2008 11:49 PM

The culprit is parents and teachers who want a diagnosis. There is no spike in disease.

Posted by: oj at March 5, 2008 7:32 AM