Tag Archives: Jennifer Larson

Dr. Gary Kompothecras Helps Canary Party Hijack Hearings

drgaryjenmarkyacht

Addendum: Click above image to enlarge.

By Jake Crosby

Above is a photo of Canary Party Chairman Mark Blaxill and President Jennifer Larson with chiropractor Dr. Gary Kompothecras of 1-800-Ask-Gary fame on a yacht in Sarasota, Florida on April 30th, 2013 where they were meeting with congressmen, including Committee on Oversight & Government Reform (COGR) Chairman Darrell Issa. Jennifer Larson, in no ambiguous terms, made it clear whom she and Blaxill had to thank for meetings with congressmen in the above Facebook photo of her, Blaxill and Dr. Kompothecras:

“Thank you Dr. Gary Kompothecras. Dr. Gary made these meetings possible.”

Yes, thank you  Dr. Gary for making it possible for Mark Blaxill to hijack the congressional hearings. Dr. Kompothecras has considerable political influence and in recent years has given vast amounts of money to Congressman Issa’s campaign for Congress and those of other congressmen. Dr. Kompothecras’ political pull was key to having Issa commit to holding hearings on autism causation and the vaccine program in 2012.

Unfortunately, Dr. Kompothecras was also key in destroying what he helped launch. At the 2012 AutismOne conference, Kompothecras spilled the news of the upcoming congressional hearing to Mark Blaxill, who then undermined that hearing with the help of lobbyist Beth Clay, interfered with scientist Dr. Brian Hooker testifying on CDC’s research fraud and caused autism epidemic deniers Ari Ne’eman and Michael John Carley to show up instead, much to Kompothecras’ dismay. He was so angry about Ne’eman’s presence at the hearing that when Ne’eman offered to shake his hand, Kompothecras replied:

“I’m not gonna shake your hand you fucking clown!”

I cringed when Dr. Kompothecras bragged about this to me after the hearing. Yet his anger at Ari Ne’eman’s testifying did not stop him from giving Mark Blaxill a friendly pat on the shoulder at the hearing, despite Blaxill’s role in enabling Ne’eman to testify by having the hearing topic changed to the catch-all “federal response” on autism.

The disturbing details of how Blaxill hijacked the hearing did not deter Dr. Kompothecras from developing closer ties to Blaxill and Canary Party Dr. Hooker was pressured into “working with” Mark Blaxill by Dr. Kompothecras who made Hooker fear being cut off from COGR if he didn’t cooperate with Canary Party. That was when Canary Party put out an action alert that – unlike what Canary Party’s president promised to Dr. Brian Hooker – did not specifically ask Congress to investigate the CDC’s scientific misconduct.

Despite the false promise made to Dr. Hooker by Canary Party President Jennifer Larson that the Canary Party action alert would ask for an investigation specifically into CDC research fraud, Dr. Brian Hooker told me who the real architect of the action alert was:

“It was Mark’s doing. I called him on it after the action alert came out”

And in contrast to Mark Blaxill later claiming that it was Issa who wanted the next hearing to be about the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP):

“He [Mark Blaxill] said that he was merely representing the consensus of the community and that the community wanted the NVICP hearing first,” said Hooker.

Also contradictory to Blaxill’s claim that the action alert represented the “consensus of the community” was the fact that the alert emphasized NVICP and led the community to ask Congressional COGR to investigate it. When asked to make a correction to the alert, Blaxill replied:

“What’s done is done.”

After Blaxill, Larson and Kompothecras’ April 30th, 2013 meeting with congressmen including COGR Chairman Issa, Jennifer Larson gave $40,000 to the Darrell Issa Victory Fund in May. This in turn was followed by Issa’s sitting on a panel at the AutismOne 2013 conference held later that same month. Mark Blaxill introduced that panel.

After emails turned up in September of that year revealing Mark Blaxill’s role in sabotaging the omnibus autism proceeding – that both Drs. Hooker and Kompothecras are petitioners in – Kompothecras dismissed Blaxill’s actions as being from years prior. Yet the following month, Mark Blaxill said in a podcast interview that he was unapologetic about anything he has done. Small wonder that Dr. Hooker said that October, “I feel very betrayed by Dr. Gary” and has not heard much from him in the past year.

Then the congressional committee cancelled the December-scheduled NVICP hearing, noting the topic picked by Canary Party was overly divisive. Yet even after that, as well as revelations about Blaxill’s role in throwing the omnibus and his concealed pharmaceutical connections, Dr. Kompothecras still supports him and Canary Party.

According to a reliable source, the NVICP hearing is tentatively scheduled for July 15th, 2014; with Dr. Kompothecras’ help, the Canary Party is still undermining the congressional hearings that were meant to be about CDC research misconduct. In the mean time, Kompothocras has been having some legal troubles that range from him being investigated by the Florida Bar, to being sued by State Farm Insurance, and he  is suing Allstate Insurance and Bloomberg News.

Jake Crosby is editor of Autism Investigated. He is a 2011 graduate of Brandeis University with a Bachelor of Arts in both History and Health: Science, Society and Policy and a 2013 graduate of The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services with a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology. He currently attends the University of Texas School of Public Health where he is studying for a Ph.D. in Epidemiology.

American Citizens for Health Choice: Canary Party’s Fundraising Arm?

healthchoicecan

By Jake Crosby

There is supposedly a new group on the horizon that calls itself the American Citizens for Health Choice (ACHC). However, it appears to be a new incarnation of a political organization founded in 2011 that effectively caused the collapse of the congressional autism hearings: Canary Party.

All four board members listed on the ACHC website are either former or current heads of Canary Party, although only two mention their affiliations. Jennifer Larson lists her position as president and co-founder of Canary Party and Patti Carroll says she is executive director of Canary Party. Despite also being co-founder as well as chairman of Canary Party, however, Mark Blaxill lists no affiliation with Canary Party in his bio on the ACHC website, simply saying he is editor-at-large for the (Canary Party-sponsored) blog Age of Autism as well as a director of SafeMinds, although he publicly stepped down from the latter organization’s board of directors last year. Meanwhile, the fourth board member of ACHC, Ginger Taylor, lists no past affiliation with Canary Party despite having been its previous executive director and then its vice president before announcing her departure from the latter position and autism advocacy in general on New Year’s Day.

ACHC may try to make itself look like a unique organization but appears to be nothing more than Canary Party’s fundraising arm. An anonymous source informed me that several Canary Party parents got together to start this new fundraising organization founded on the same premises as the Canary Party’s –  fighting chronic disease and promoting individual choice. The mission statements on the homepage of each group’s website are also similar.

Here is the  Canary Party homepage description:

“The Canary Party is a movement created to stand up for the victims of medical injury, environmental toxins and industrial foods by restoring balance to our free and civil society and empowering consumers to make health and nutrition decisions that promote wellness.”

And here is the ACHC homepage description:

“Our group was formed in response to a study published in Academic Pediatrics that represented 43% of children (32 million) in the US suffers from a chronic health condition. It is our belief that these rates will continue to increase if parents are not aware of the unhealthy choices in their lifestyle such as industrial processed foods, side effects of vaccine choices, and other environmental and lifestyle factors.”

Although the premise as well as the leaders of the two organizations are the same, it is obvious from their websites that they are trying to look like independent organizations when they are anything but. Since Canary Party is not a non-profit and ACHC is, it would appear that the purpose of the latter organization is to act as a fundraising arm of the former organization. With only $687.12 in the bank by the end of 2013, Canary Party is in need of some new cash. Apparently, ACHC’s purpose is to fulfill that need. ACHC first started filing 990 forms in 2012, but it has yet to publicly announce its existence.

Addendum: As of the date of this post, the link to americancitizensforhealthchoice.org now re-directs to a website with the URL that simply reads healthchoice.org along with the following notification: “This site is down for maintenance. Please check back again soon.” However, the americancitizensforhealthchoice.org homepage can still be found archived.

Jake Crosby is editor of Autism Investigated. He is a 2011 graduate of Brandeis University with a Bachelor of Arts in both History and Health: Science, Society and Policy and a 2013 graduate of The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services with a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology. He currently attends the University of Texas School of Public Health where he is studying for a Ph.D. in Epidemiology.

Canary Party’s False Promises Led To Congressional Hearing Collapse

Hooker-Larson comment

(Click to enlarge)

By Jake Crosby

Above is a screenshot dated March 23rd of a Facebook post from Dr. Brian Hooker asking for people to call congressional staff and ask that the Congressional Committee on Oversight & Government Reform (COGR) specifically investigate data fraud committed by CDC to cover up the vaccine-autism link. Commenting beneath his Facebook post is none other than Jennifer Larson – President of the Canary Party:

“We are on it! Thanks Brian Hooker!”

But after weeks of planning a Canary Party Action Alert that was intended to support Brian Hooker’s investigation, suddenly Canary Party sent out an alert that did not represent what was promised to him:

“Chairman Issa stated there is nothing that is off-limits for what the OGR committee will continue to explore. Ask him to promptly schedule the next hearing to investigate government malfeasance in covering up the vaccine/autism connection including, as examples, the following areas:

• Evidence in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program showing clearly that vaccines can and do cause autism

• CDC’s cover-up of the thimerosal/autism connection

• CDC’s suppression of evidence of the autism epidemic”

This Action Alert reveals Canary Party’s strategy to shift the topic away from CDC’s cover-up of the thimerosal/autism connection. In the first bullet point, the Canary Party introduces NVICP as evidence that vaccines cause autism. Somehow, NVICP as evidence of vaccines’ link to autism later morphed into NVICP reform – the new topic for the next congressional hearing. But what happened to the topic promised to Dr. Hooker?

Not only was the CDC cover-up of thimerosal’s role in causing the autism epidemic buried in the middle of the Action Alert, but the wording was clearly favorable to the entirely different topic of NVICP. In fact, that was exactly what Canary Party’s Executive Director Patti Carroll asked for in a long letter she posted on the House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform’s Facebook page. And now, Canary Party claims NVICP was Issa’s idea all along, even though we can trace its origin to the above Action Alert.

Brian Hooker was not pleased with this turn of events and wrote on Facebook, “COGR is not ready for that investigation and I’ve been told by their staff many times that they do not yet have energy for the NVICP. We are so close to a CDC investigation. That is why I approached Jennifer about the Action Alert. The message is now confused. I’m very discouraged…”

Regarding the action alert specifically, Dr. Hooker commented:

“not effective… not what I talked to Jennifer about… very discouraged…”

He then expressed regret about the action alert entirely:

“If I would have know [sic] this, I would have withdrawn my request for an action alert.”

Sure enough, the December-scheduled NVICP hearing Canary Party requested (in violation of its promise to Dr. Brian Hooker) was cancelled. Without providing any direct quotes from those who cancelled the hearing , Canary Party immediately shifted blame on everything from interference by the vaccine industry to simply “poor timing”. The below quote from a legal source in direct contact with COGR Chairman Issa’s counsel, previously disclosed on Autism Investigated, tells an entirely different story:

“I was just informed by the Counsel for Chairman Issa that due to ‘great deal of reluctance about participating or being drawn into what they, in their private candid discussions with us, say they see as an overly divisive issue’ they are canceling the hearing.”

Certainly it was divisive of Canary Party to promise one thing and then suddenly deliver something else that aims to avoid the CDC’s suppression of evidence thimerosal causes autism. Similarly, it was divisive of Canary Party to misrepresent a vaccine-injured child’s case at its congressional briefing and then when her mother complained in the comments of the Canary Party-sponsored/edited Age of Autism blog, approve a barrage of anonymous attacks from commenters including one from an organizer of the briefing. Put them both together and the result is an overly divisive issue Congress is reluctant to touch.

At least three questions remain unanswered: Why did Canary Party introduce a new hearing topic when Brian Hooker was so close to exposing CDC malfeasance that legislators were grilling a top CDC official about vaccine safety? Why did Canary Party instead push for a topic that COGR has stated many times it is not ready to pursue? Lastly, why are members of the autism community still following the Canary Party?

Jake Crosby is editor of Autism Investigated. He is a 2011 graduate of Brandeis University with a Bachelor of Arts in both History and Health: Science, Society and Policy and a 2013 graduate of The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services with a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology. He currently attends the University of Texas School of Public Health where he is studying for a Ph.D. in Epidemiology.

 

Mark Blaxill Admits COI When His Undermining Began

conflict

By Jake Crosby

Mark Blaxill appeared on Linderman Unleashed Thursday to “rebut” my interview with Linderman last week (both interviews embedded below). Unfortunately, Blaxill avoided much of what I said despite admitting he’d had a conflict of interest with vaccine manufacturers while David Kirby was writing the book “Evidence of Harm.” Mark Blaxill also made tacit reference to my autism – and not in a positive way – near the end of the interview.

In Kirby’s book, Blaxill was quoted as threatening to resign from SafeMinds‘ board should the organization speak out against drug companies poisoning children – companies that he admitted at the time were clients of his then-employer, Boston Consulting Group. The period when Evidence of Harm was still being written also corresponds with when Blaxill and others from SafeMinds were secretly advising the Vaccine Injured Petitioners’ Steering Committee for the autism omnibus, where he trashed petitioners’ expert witnesses Dr. Mark and David Geier and said Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s work was “not well-supported by the epi data.” Blaxill did all this despite his connections to the vaccine industry. He claimed on the show that “no one worked harder” than he did in showing how CDC cheated with numbers using the Vaccine Safety Datalink, and yet, it was David Geier not Mark Blaxill who discovered the CDC’s early results showing thimerosal caused harm including autism.

It should  be stated that while on Linderman, Blaxill also denied possessing a conflict of interest any longer – claiming to not have one since 2006. Nonetheless, the troubling trend of his undermining advocacy against vaccines causing autism began during his employment with the Boston Consulting Group, which has vaccine manufacturers for clients.

The latest example of this trend can be seen in the congressional autism hearings in which Mark Blaxill has been consistently working to prevent CDC malfeasance from being exposed both before Congress and on national television via dishonest lobbying practices. While Mark Blaxill chaired SafeMinds’ Government Affairs Committee, SafeMinds succeeded in changing the topic of last November’s hearing so it would no longer be about CDC malfeasance as originally planned and organized by autism parent and scientist Dr. Brian Hooker. Blaxill and SafeMinds’ actions prevented Dr. Hooker from testifying.*

In a more recent example of such undermining, Mark Blaxill’s Canary Party released an action alert asking Congress to investigate the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program last April – a complete betrayal of trust to Dr. Brian Hooker. Just two weeks prior, Canary Party President Jennifer Larson had promised Dr. Hooker that the alert would ask Congress to hold the next hearing specifically on CDC malfeasance, which the last hearing would have been about had SafeMinds not changed the topic. Age of Autism – both sponsored and edited by Blaxill – covered up such revelations about the alert by refusing to publish my critical comment on the pretense it was “picayune.”

Yet in spite of these activities – SafeMinds’ lobbying, Canary Party’s action alert and most recently Canary Party President Jennifer Larson’s $40,000 contribution the PAC of Congressional Committee Chair Darrell Issa – Mark Blaxill insists any involvement of his in sabotaging the hearing is “a lie” and that he has “no power” over how the hearing topics are chosen or who is invited to testify. While Issa, other congressmen and their staffers have the final say, Mark Blaxill consistently avoids discussing his ongoing role in attempting to influence their decisions to keep exposure of the vaccine-autism cover-up out of the hearings.

Instead, he denies having any explanation for all the failures that have occurred concerning the hearings and similar initiatives – many of which he contributed to – and essentially blames his followers for not being rich and powerful enough to defeat DHHS or big pharma rather than his own largely self-styled and unwanted leadership. He told Linderman:

“To be honest, you know we’re fighting with pop guns, man, and the other side has tanks…but you go to war with the army that you got, not the one that you wish for. And the fact is, we’re not making enough change, and I don’t know what to do about it to be honest, other than to keep fighting and to keep fighting the best way that we can.”

And that would be, according to Mark Blaxill, with the analogous equivalent of pop guns fighting tanks while he thwarts yet another hearing and his vice president Ginger Taylor tells people my judgement is compromised by my autism. At the end of the interview (which began with my name being stated by Curt Linderman as the very reason for the interview), Blaxill clearly made another derogatory reference to my autism without naming me:

I think we need to love our kids whether they’re  low-functioning or high-functioning, and when they’re high-functioning and they’re not functioning the way we hope they would, we love them anyway. 

Yet just days after my first article on how SafeMinds hijacked the last congressional hearing went online, he unfriended me on Facebook. I guess I really must not be functioning the way Mark Blaxill hoped.

Interviews:

Mark Blaxill’s response

My interview on Linderman

*Linderman mistakenly asked Blaxill to verify if the Canary Party influenced the November hearing when it was actually SafeMinds’ involvement in that hearing that I had taken issue with during my interview. I had also noted that Blaxill’s base of operations later shifted from SafeMinds to Canary Party in his efforts to influence Congress.

 

Jake Crosby is editor of Autism Investigated and is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. He is a 2011 graduate of Brandeis University with a Bachelor of Arts in both History and Health: Science, Society and Policy and a 2013 graduate of The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services with a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology. He currently attends the University of Texas School of Public Health where he is studying for a Ph.D. in Epidemiology.