Tag Archives: President Trump

My Final Exchange with Dan Olmsted: Leaving Progressivism

It is with great sadness that Autism Investigated relays the announcement that Dan Olmsted – Age of Autism’s founding editor – has passed away. While I have had my differences with him and the Age of Autism site, I will be forever grateful to him for his friendship, advice and platform for my views. I’ve always respected him as a journalist and have never forgotten the excellent work he has done over the years, and I just had a very friendly exchange with him on the day of the inauguration. I will never stop missing him, and I offered my sincere condolences to the entire Age of Autism team. Autism Investigated devoted the entire last week to posts honoring Dan Olmsted, which ended with a proper obituary. Since then, Age of Autism has given Autism Investigated permission to post its final exchange with Dan Olmsted. It is now published here in full. May we all honor Dan’s life by ending the autism epidemic to make America great again! – Jake Crosby, MPH
Hello Dan,
 
How are you doing?
 
I’m writing you because the title of Anne’s post is: “Senators on key panel reject Donald Trump’s skepticism about vaccines” [Senators Reject Trump’s Vaccine Panel], even though there is no indication any of them did directly except perhaps Al Franken. She was probably confused by the wording of the title: Senators on key panel reject Trump’s skepticism about vaccineBut that “key panel” is the Senate HELP committee they serve on; the members were not asked to weigh in on Kennedy’s panel – only on their overall opinions of vaccine safety. It doesn’t mean they outright reject Kennedy’s panel. STAT News didn’t provide their exact questions, so we really have no idea what they asked the Senators or if they even mentioned Trump.
Obviously it’s your blog to do whatever you want with, but at this sensitive time I would say it’s best to correct that. 
 
Happy new year and president.
 
Jake
 
——– Original Message ——–
Subject: Re: Senators Didn’t Reject Kennedy Panel Idea
From: Dan Olmsted 
Date: Fri, January 20, 2017 9:46 pm
To: info@autisminvestigated.com
Cc: amdachel@msn.com

Thanks for writing Jake we will check it out and let you know
 
I join you in wishing trump well. My progressive affinities have moderated lately and I am optimistic, as I have to say you were before the election
 
Best
 
Dan
 ——– Original Message ——–
Subject: RE: Senators Didn’t Reject Kennedy Panel Idea
From: <info@autisminvestigated.com>
Date: Mon, January 23, 2017 12:30 pm
To: “Dan Olmsted” 

My pleasure, Dan. Good post on Trump, btw. I don’t know if you saw my Newt Gingrich post, but he now supports RFK’s commission!
I’ll admit, I was much more optimistic about Trump being a good president if he won than I was about whether or not he’d win in the first place! So glad he did! 
And please dump the SJWs; they’re crazy, and you always struck me as a classical liberal guy anyway.
Best,
Jake 

Little did I know at the time that he would never get my final email to him. The following week, SJWs would burn Berkeley to cancel a talk by another gay journalist who had grown fed up with his community’s politics. Whether our opponents are wearing black ski masks or white lab coats, the best we can do to honor Dan’s life is to never shy from saying what needs to be said. It’s what Dan would want.

Remembering Dan Olmsted: The Journalist Who Taught Me That We Live in The Age of Autism

dan_award_3

It is with great sadness that Autism Investigated relays the announcement that Dan Olmsted – Age of Autism’s founding editor – has passed away. While I have had my differences with him and the Age of Autism site, I will be forever grateful to him for his friendship, advice and platform for my views. I’ve always respected him as a journalist and have never forgotten the excellent work he has done over the years, and I just had a very friendly exchange with him on the day of the inauguration. I will never stop missing him and offer my sincere condolences to the entire Age of Autism team. Autism Investigated devoted the entire week to posts honoring Dan Olmsted, and is now ending with a proper obituary. May we all honor Dan Olmsted’s life by ending the autism epidemic to make America great again! – Jake Crosby, MPH

How many journalists leave mainstream media to devote the rest of their lives to get to the bottom of the fastest growing neurological disorder among children in the United States? Because I can think of only one, and his name was Dan Olmsted.

“His loss leaves a huge vacuum for people who care about public health and children’s health in this country,” said Robert F. Kennedy Jr. “He’s had as much integrity as any reporter I’ve ever met and more courage than any I’ve ever met. He was willing to walk away from his job for the sake of truth.”

Dan Olmsted passed away unexpectedly on January 23rd, 2016 at the age of 64, and is survived by his spouse Mark Milett and sister Rosamund McDonel Augsburger. The news came as a shock to many who knew him, myself included. That shock was compounded by Dan’s unceasing endurance, writing articles non-stop until two days before his death. He left behind an incredible library of articles and books going back over a decade – most about the autism epidemic, and all related to it in some way. Second only to coping with his loss, the biggest challenge for me was selecting which articles of his to re-post for Autism Investigated’s 7-day tribute to his life. There are just so many!

“Here was a true journalist, not a doctor or a scientist, who did what the medical and scientific communities didn’t do but should have done: investigate the cause of autism,” said exonerated British doctor Andrew Wakefield.

Finding some new insight or lead about the age of autism was never a problem for Dan. When I first met him in 2009, he told me about the time he decided to start writing his Age of Autism column for United Press International. His editor was reportedly concerned that he wouldn’t find enough material to keep the column going.

“Are you kidding me? I can write one every week,” he relayed back to me.

That was all the way back in 2005, but he kept the column going for two years straight until leaving the news agency. His commitment to the cause would only escalate in 2007 when he founded his own news website dedicated to the topic he loved writing about so much: AgeofAutism.com.

It was there that I got my start in 2008 when I first began contributing. While I was a contributing editor, I learned so much from him. It is hard to know where to begin. His ability to investigate, uncover and write was unique and unparalleled, and I always benefited from his advice.

But eventually, a rift grew within our friendship. And one day, that rift grew big enough that it forced me to leave and start my own site – thus marking the beginning of Autism Investigated. We had ceased speaking for awhile, with very little communication in recent years. And despite sometimes citing Age of Autism, Autism Investigated had also been critical of Age of Autism’s coverage at times – particularly during the election cycle.

But despite the mixed signals Age of Autism may have sent about our now-president before the election, Dan Olmsted eventually came around to fully embracing President Trump. On the day of the inauguration just three days before Dan’s death, I was fortunate to have had an extremely friendly email exchange with him where he expressed the same optimism about the new president as he would do the next day in his final “Weekly Wrap” post.

But most encouraging of all was his colorful plea at the very end, one that Autism Investigated hopes will soon become a reality again:

…there is much more common in our cause than anything we might occasionally fight over – that the autism epidemic is real, and excessive vaccinations are the cause.

Rebel Alliance, unite!

NEWT GINGRICH ON RFK CHAIRING VACCINE COMMISSION: “I’m very comfortable with him taking the position.”

Newt Gingrich speaks during an American Solutions rally Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

Newt Gingrich speaks during an American Solutions rally Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich – who has been a trusted adviser to President Trump – has come out in support of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. chairing a federal commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity. Autism Investigated would like to thank STAT News for helping make that happen, especially after it previously reported: Medical research’s best hope under President Trump? It’s Newt

Gingrich had also been highly critical of Kennedy for his vaccine positions in the past, but has since backed off from those criticisms. According to STAT News’ article on Kennedy’s newly announced vaccine safety commission:

…Gingrich backed away from his earlier criticism of Kennedy. As long as the panel is “appropriately organized” and has a realistic, scientific basis, he said, “I’m very comfortable with him taking the position.”

In a desperate attempt to try and cancel out the significance of Gingrich’s support, STAT News contacted all 23 Senators who serve on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (“HELP”) Committee. One of those Senators – Mike Enzi – even produced a sealed report back in 2007 which sought to clear certain federal agencies and private entities like the Institute of Medicine of the misconduct they committed in defending the mercury-based vaccine preservative thimerosal.

STAT News seemed to get what they wanted for their article, Senators on key panel reject Donald Trump’s skepticism about vaccines:

Eighteen senators, including eight of the 12 Republicans in the committee’s majority, expressed confidence in the US vaccination system and recognized the health benefits of vaccination.

Or, maybe not:

Staff for two other Republicans, Mike Enzi of Wyoming and Richard Burr of North Carolina, declined to comment. (boldface mine)

In a comment submitted under that article, Autism Investigated attempted to point out to STAT News how it twice buried the lead: first with Gingrich supporting Kennedy’s commission in STAT News‘ initial article and then with Enzi refusing to call vaccines safe in its follow-up piece. The comment never appeared.

Instead, the comments were closed with this lovely gem from one of the editors:

We have closed comments on this article, due largely to the uncivil and outright nasty direction taken by what should be a civil and instructive conversation.

Never mind that the only real perpetrator was a squatter who had been attacking any commenter critical of STAT News’ dishonest hit-pieces against Kennedy. What a convenient excuse and time for STAT News to shut down comment threads under all those posts: right as it was being reminded of how it inadvertently got both a sitting US Senator and a former House Speaker to back away from their earlier defenses of the vaccine program.

But even better: STAT News got the former House Speaker Newt Gingrich to now openly support Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity. Thanks STAT News!

Looks like Kennedy and President Trump are already well on their way to ending the autism epidemic and making America great again!