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Can we talk about the Simpsonwood Conference?

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posted on Nov, 8 2014 @ 08:45 PM
Apologies in advance for being late to the party

I really don't want this to devolve into a vaccines good/bad debate.

I'm hoping to get clarification on people's thoughts on the Simpsonwood Conference in 2000. As far as I know: the conference absolutely happened; a transcript from that conference was released following a request through the Freedom of Information Act.

Some of the excerpts from this purported transcript were reported by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. in his (since-removed) article in Salon and Rolling Stone in 2005. Some of the comments made by participants were fairly alarming.

My main issue is that I can't seem to find anything solid that contradicted both the existence of the conference & what was supposedly said by participants regarding a link between thimerosal and autism.

I realize the RFK article was "discredited," but that was really only with respect to some of the math he used - not the quotes from the Simpsonwood conference. Searches on snopes, google, etc. didn't really turn up a whole lot beyond the usual anti-vax sites.

So I come to you, fellow ATSers. Help me figure this one out by adding a bit of context.

Thanks in advance,


posted on Nov, 8 2014 @ 09:44 PM
I don't know anything about that conference. I may learn a little about it from this thread though.

posted on Nov, 8 2014 @ 09:52 PM
a reply to: DeadKennedys

This is a PDF of the transcripts of that conference, but you'd have to dig for any quotes, although I'm sure anything like a link between vaccines and autism would edited.
edit on 8-11-2014 by DAVID64 because: add

posted on Nov, 9 2014 @ 12:41 AM
I would be leery of the link between thiomerosal in vaccines with autism rates simply because the rate of autism has continued to increase despite thiomerosal being removed from all vaccines with the exception of some variations of the flu vaccine by 2001. That compounded with the multitude of factual errors in RFK Jrs. Article makes it a very tenuous link at best in my opinion. Obviously something is going on as current autism rates are estimated at approximately 1:50 children, I'm just not convinced that there is a link with vaccinations. Simultaneously I'm still cautious about the vaccine schedules given to toddlers and adolescents and with my own children I always push to spread out the number and time frame if dosages they received simply due to over stressing a still forming immune system. But that's just the over cautious parent in me and isn't in any way related to concerns regarding autism. The drastic increase in autism rates since the late 60's/ early 70's clearly needs to be looked at much harder than it currently is though. Just my opinion based on some of the microbiology and other electives I took while working on an anthropology degree so I'm obviously not an expert but i do have some foundation in biology to base the opinion on.

posted on Nov, 9 2014 @ 09:07 AM
Appreciate the responses, y'all.

PV - Yep, I'm familiar with the errors in the RFK Jr. article and the removal of thimerosal from most vaccines (except influenza). To be candid, I had thought that the continued increases in ASD cases coupled with the removal of thimerosal would bury the debate altogether. The argument seems to have augmented to claim that around that same time, more vaccines began to make use of human tissue. (These goalposts are getting heavy from moving around so often...)

But what continues to fascinate me is that after we've sufficiently destroyed RFK Jr. for his own misinterpretation of scientific data, we're still left with this unexplained transcript from the conference where scientists (not RFK Jr) express their concern regarding thimerosal.

It's a pretty glaring example (from afar, at least) of the baby being tossed out with the bath water. RFK Jr was never accused of actually fabricating anything - only misinterpreting data. Assuming that he didn't completely make up the conference itself and what was said by scientists at that continues to puzzle me.

Like I said, I'm more curious than anything else. If someone can enlighten me on why those statements don't matter or how this "story" has been the product of an elaborate hoax, I'm all ears.

For the life of me, I could not find any denials or explanations regarding the conference transcript. Thanks in advance & Happy Sunday!

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