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So Autism Is Even MORE Common Than Last Year. Who Cares?
JANUARY 27, 2014
By Dr Bob Sears
I was really hoping that my latest blog would be entitled “Finally, Someone Cares About the Autism Epidemic!” But alas, it is not to be. The word “epidemic” is being reserved for the hundred or so cases of measles we see in the U.S. each year (no fatalities), or the very tragic twenty to thirty annual deaths from whooping cough. But autism? Don’t worry, it’s NOT an epidemic, because the government continues to reassure us it’s not an epidemic (Past blogs have been featured here 1.)
Tell that to the one million or more children currently affected (2.)
Remember back when autism was 1 in 10,000 and eventually 1 in 1000? Then 1 in 150 came along, and some of us got worried. Last year we were told it had jumped to 1 in 50. So, I was certain that “the powers that be” would finally step up and declare an emergency. Either that, or show us research that demonstrates autism is on the decline. But silence? SILENCE? What’s up with THAT?
What got my blood boiling again was the latest news (which I didn’t actually see on the NEWS): 1 in 48 Minneapolis children ages 7 to 9 have autism (3.) For Somali children in the city, the number is 1 in 32. We’d heard about the Somali problem a few years ago, and the government figured the Somali issue was due to some sort of genetic factor. The rest of our children in the area, whose parents were voting constituents, were safe. Not so. This latest study shows that Caucasian children in the city have an autism rate of 1 in 36. In other ethnicities, it’s less-commonly identified, thus diluting the total number down to 1 in 48. So, it’s not just some genetic factor unique to certain populations.
I’m tired of getting my weekly “Eye on Influenza” newsletter from the public health department. Where’s my “Eye on Autism” weekly update? If 1 in 48 of my infant patients is going to develop a disorder, I want to know that the government is on top of it. I want to know that someone, anyone, cares.
Dr. Bob Sears
Pediatrician, TACA Physician Advisor, and author of The Autism Book
1) Past Dr Sears previous “Who Cares” Blogs:
2) Autism Statistics http://www.tacanow.org/family-resources/latest-autism-statistics-2/
3) Minneapolis Somali Autism Spectrum Disorder Prevalence Project 2013 http://rtc.umn.edu/autism/doc/Autism_report.pdf
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Tue Jan 28, 2014, 07:28 PM (0 replies)
Onus is on manufacturers to undertake studies demonstrating safety as a condition of approval if PP.
January 13, 2014
by Alice Shabecoff
Despite naysayers (who pays them to say nay?–that’s a whole story in itself), it’s clear there is both an association and a causative connection between the vast explosion of poisons in our everyday lives and our childrens’ “issues.”
Over 80,000 industrial chemicals (tested only by the manufacturer) are in commerce in this country, produced or imported at 15 trillion pounds a year. Pesticide use has leaped from the troubling 400 million pounds Rachel Carson wrote about in the 1960s to the mind-boggling 4.4 billion pounds in use today.
In a riff on Pogo, let’s say, “We have met the heroes and it is us.” We cannot bury our heads and hope it will all go away. We cannot leave the job to someone else. Some may feel the problem is so massive, it’s best to pretend it doesn’t exist. But it isn’t more massive than we allow it to be. It’s totally within our reach.
We can make each other smarter and stronger. It is in our power to learn about what harms our children and to share our knowledge. It is in our power as a community of citizens and parents to demand action against the current harmful policies and practices and against the indiscriminate use of processes and practices that destroy and degrade all life on our planet.
May 10, 2002
This week on NOW: Are we making our children sick? In the last 70 years, more than 75,000 synthetic chemicals and metals have been put to use in America — chemicals that in many cases make our lives easier and better. They kill insects and weeds, clean our clothes and carpets, unclog our drains, create produce and lawns as pretty as a picture. But most of these chemicals have never been tested for their toxic effects on children. And scientists are concerned that recent increases in childhood illnesses like asthma and cancer, as well as learning disabilities, may be related to the environment — to what kids eat, drink and breathe.
Kids and Chemicals, a special edition of NOW, features medical investigators and health officials engaged in the latest research on links between childhood illness and environmental contamination.
Added 8 months ago
As long as the chemical industry and its powerful lobbies prevail in blocking efforts to reform outdated laws, the authors say, we will continue to float in a soup of toxins -- inhaling, drinking, and absorbing chemicals that we may learn, years later, have put us all in harm’s way.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Jan 27, 2014, 06:50 PM (0 replies)
Apparently, there is more to this issue than meets the eye of typical consumers - it's not over yet.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Sat Jan 25, 2014, 12:25 PM (1 replies)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: FRIDAY, JANUARY 17, 2014
Chemical Company Sues California Over Flame Retardants
Oakland, Calif. – The chemical company Chemtura sued the state of California yesterday seeking to block new fire safety regulations that would permit furniture production without toxic flame retardants.
The new rules, which Gov. Jerry Brown put into force last November would allow furniture manufacturers to meet California’s fire safety standards without using fire retardants chemicals, including those manufactured by Chemtura.
"This lawsuit is a blatant attempt to protect the company's profits under the guise of concern for public safety," said Renee Sharp, EWG's director of research. "If successful, this lawsuit would undermine one of the most important environmental and public health victories of 2013 – Gov. Brown’s move to revamp the state's outdated and problematic fire safety standards. Previous fire safety rules did not effectively protect us from fire dangers, but they did contaminate our bodies and those of our children with chemicals linked to cancer and other serious dangers to health.”
The new regulations are expected to have a significant impact nationwide for Chemtura’ future profits because California, with 10 percent of the U.S. population, has so much purchasing power that most furniture makers fabricate their products to comply with the state’s flammability standards.
In 2012, as he began to overhaul the state’s fire safety law, Brown cited a groundbreaking 2008 EWG study that found that concentrations of fire retardants in children’s blood three times higher than in their mothers’ blood. The reason: children typically play on the floor and come into contact with fire retardant chemicals shed by treated foam furniture.
EWG has been investigating the toxicity of fire retardants in furniture since 2003. That year, EWG tests found one class of toxic fire retardants called PBDEs in the breast milk of 20 American mothers at an average concentration 75 times higher than in European mothers. This dramatic difference was attributed to California’s inflexible fire safety rules. The state legislature subsequently banned PBDEs, and several other states enacted their own restrictions. Eventually PBDEs were phased out across the U.S., but use of other fire retardants continued unabated.
Recently, tests by scientists and consumer advocates found that California’s fire safety rules had triggered widespread use of chemical fire retardants in couches, car seats, changing table pads and other baby products across the country. Chlorinated tris has replaced PBDEs in many cases, even though California regulators have formally labeled this chemical as a carcinogen. Firemaster 550, another replacement for PBDEs, is suspected of disrupting the hormone system.
The new California regulations will allow manufacturers to use safer technologies such as fire-resistant fabrics in place of chemically treated foam. Baby products will no longer be required to contain fire retardants, since they are deemed unlikely to cause a serious house fire.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Jan 24, 2014, 01:21 PM (1 replies)
AUTISM FACT: In the US "67 children will be diagnosed today, that's nearly 1 child every 20 minutes"
Watch this film, STANDARD DISCLAIMERS APPLY.
Oscars Voter's Guide: 151 Long-Listed Docs by Subject Matter
10:40 AM PST 11/22/2013 by Scott Feinberg
The United States of Autism
August 8, 2013
Journey Across a Wide Spectrum
By DAVID DeWITT
The spectrum of autism is wide, as the low-budget documentary “The United States of Autism” shows. Its host, Richard Everts (also the director and the father of an autistic son), introduces 20 families dealing with the disorder, visited during 40 days of road travel across the country. He meets the highly verbal, troubled only in social situations. He meets the nonverbal, whose physical struggles exhaust financial and emotional resources. He meets parents displaying pain or pride, or both, about their children.
The networks of such families, which rely heavily on one another for advice and comfort, should search out this modest film. But all should be prepared to forgive the fakey vibe of an HGTV fix-up show, with the happy-faced Mr. Everts being greeted with cheery bonhomie at stop after stop — so many that the movie is concerned with breadth, not depth. And Mr. Everts gives precious time to an anxious personal reconciliation with his estranged father, which is underexplored or overexplored and, at any rate, doesn’t fit.
Many scenes, though, are moving: A nonverbal teenager withholding eye contact slowly, gently touches his guest in trust and affection. Mr. Everts meets Puerto Ricans and Korean-Americans, Christians and Muslims, those with low incomes and high. All the while, passionate disputes about causes, treatment and possible recovery are noted but not refereed.
That pluralism is the point. Yes, the animated opening sequence has a professional polish that the rest of the film lacks, but the documentary’s chosen angle is meaningful: The world of autism is as diverse as the nation.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Jan 17, 2014, 02:22 PM (0 replies)
HuckleB: Michael Pollan as GMO ‘denialist’ dupes credulous New York Times
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Jan 15, 2014, 11:36 PM (1 replies)
Chorus of Condemnation on Seralini Retraction Worldwide
Institute of Science in Society, January 15, 2013
Read what some of those who signed on are saying; add your name and forward widely to get the retraction reversed, and to show your support for science and scientists working for the public good.
Lee Artz (signed scientist) Outstanding Scholar Award, Prof at Purdue University Calumet Social Science, USA: "John Dewey once said that our quality of life depends on "improving the methods of debate and discussion." Arguing, contesting, refuting the study's findings are in order. Censorship burns humanity, trashes truth, and postpones knowledge."
Link from: http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_29070.cfm
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:57 PM (0 replies)