Offit on Colbert

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I haven't been able to get this to work and haven't seen it work on anyone else's. So, here's the link:


One error in Offit's exchange was when he misspeaks and says Wakefield studied 8 kids; we all know there were 12, as does he.


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed that! Thanks for the link - I didn't have to search for it myself.

The link worked for me - no problem. (picky, picky - 12 not 8)


KWombles said...

Gotta be picky; they'll roast him anyway, but to have an error they can pick up on, better to note the error ahead of the game. :-)

The NECSS video of Offit's presentation in 09 is even better than the Colbert appearance. It's embedded in my previous post or can be found here:

Autism Reality NB said...

Anything new?

KWombles said...

Not really. The video on my previous post is more informative.

Sullivan said...

Mr. Wakefield claimed that there was a possible vaccine link in 8 of 12. That's the eight.

KWombles said...

How many anti-vaccine folks will get that? Their emphasis is on the fact that there are 12 kids in the series and all the parents are absolutely happy with the care they received. They'll use that against him. Unfortunately.

Sullivan said...


They look for any reason to discount anything that goes against their ideas. If Dr. Offit said 12, they would say, "only 8 claimed vaccination as a cause...and besides, it isn't a study, it's a case series and besides besides, Wakefield never claimed that vaccines cause autism, and besides besides besides, Paul Offit is evil incarnate and besides besides besides besides, it doesn't matter what the science says, my kid is my science...."

Better for Dr. Offit to be accurate than pander to the people who will discount him anyway.

The interesting thing is that the Colbert melded McCarthy/Handley/Blaxill/etc into one character. It's time for people to wake up to the fact that this isn't happening because of some grand conspiracy (I think I already read a six-degrees-of-separation between comedy central and Big Pharma).

The Wakefield study was (a) wrong, (b) a fraud, (c) damaging, (d) exposed as all the above.

The recent Harris poll says that people who hear about the fraud are much less likely to believe the vaccines-cause-autism notion. That's big. All these organizations which are paying Andrew Wakefield as a spokesperson (Generation Rescue, SafeMinds, NAA, etc) are watching their asset drop in value. Rather than try to rally the troops around hating bogeymen like Offit and Deer, they should be reworking themselves into organizations which really advocate for a better life for autistics.

Not that I expect that to happen.

sharon said...

I really enjoyed it, but was disappointed Offit missed the opportunity to point out the eradication of smallpox means no one gets those scars anymore. That aside Colbert played his part seamlessly. And it was nice to hear the audience cheer for Paul. He deserves some applause.

Anonymous said...

I wish there was a *symbol* for sarcasm, as I #fail -ed to communicate it with "picky, picky".

What Sullivan said.


KWombles said...

Barbara, no, I got it. :-) Should have put the smiley in after the first part of my response; I then got earnest on you, and breaking it up with a smiley would have better indicated it.