I see that the website linking a collection of blogs written by hatemongers and/or desperate parents of relatively severe autistic children (Kristina Chew, Susan Senator and "CASDOK" belonging to this group) who have been exploited by this movement and engage in denial and reaction formation as to the state of their children, has taken a hiatus indefinitely. Could this mean the beginning of the end of the hub in particular and (wishful thinking) the neurodiversity movement in general? Socrates of the new republic blog has written about this and I will defer to this oversexed yet wise blogger who is far more knowledgeable than myself about the internal politics of the possibly defunct hub of which he was a member in good standing as to the explanations and the specifics. The most celebrated anti-neurodiversity blogger, John Best has given his take on the matter.
The neurodiversity movement started from modest beginnings going back to Jim Sinclair's ANI and Judith Singer's diatribes about how Asperger's should not be considered a disability. Thanks in part to the internet and the possible influence of Ari Ne'eman's family and the vulnerability of certain parents they have grown by leaps and bounds over the past 15 years or so. Could it be that they have gotten too big for their britches?
As the movement has flourished, they have actually become somewhat mainstream. They conned autism speaks into giving them half a million dollars using Laurent Mottron and Michelle Dawson as their front man/woman. They conned the Obama administration into appointing Ari Ne'eman to the national disability council though when the guys who wear the white hats fought back against the black hats, this appointment was held up. Then they turned around and conned Barack Obama and Kathleen Sebelieus into appointing him to the IACC. This was in spite of the fact that they lobbied against the combating autism act when it was being debated in congress which the IACC grew out of. The IACC has as its goals funding of scientific research with the intent of curing and preventing autism, goals that Ne'eman and the rest of his disciples have adamantly opposed.
However, one must remember the fall and decline of the Roman Empire. When neurodiversity grew by leaps and bounds and as more people joined, there was discord. Different persons had different takes. The personality clashes overrode the political agreement. The autism hub in large part by linking to these blogs contributed to the perverse message of the propagandists but with growth, there was lack of harmony. Perhaps that is what contributed to the demise of the hub, I really don't know. Again, I will defer to Socrates or perhaps another insider who might care to blog about it.
Of course the sad part is that the blogs are still there and this will make it harder for me to access the information I need to write about these people, but I will have to do my best. The hub was one of the first websites I would log onto after waking up in the morning after my orange juice and shower and a cursory read of the L.A. times. I had become an addict. Hopefully I won't go through withdrawal, but I will miss the hub with a certain nostalgia. Of course my guess it will come back with a different administrator other than Dave Seidel and my quasi neighbor Hollywood jaded. It makes me think of the song by the Who with the lyrics Meet the New Boss, same as the old boss. I suspect it will come back and nothing will change, but only time will tell.
More importantly, could these personality conflicts be the tip of an iceberg. To date there has been a relative dearth of coverage of the ND movement in the popular media. This could change on a dime given their success in conning one of the largest private sector autism charitable foundations as well as the federal government. It would be a twist in the knickers of most parents if they had heard of the neurodiversity movement, if they had seen the bullying and the hateful rhetoric of its adherents towards the parents of these children. As the ND movement grows, the hub's demise (whether temporary or permanent) might be chump change in the grand scheme of things. When persons who have given money to autism speaks hear about the things that Laurent, Morton and Michelle have said, they might boycott the walks in unison, depleting the treasury of AS who won't be able to give Geraldine another 600 grand plus in compensation for a given year. They might actually have to terminate Laurent's funding. Morton might get her funding terminated by the federal government and no longer be able to review articles for peer review. Michelle might have to beg Canada post to give her the old job she had back.
When people hear about what Ne'eman says, there will be a backlash of people writing their congressman and senators. They might even find out about Stephen Shore's closet anti-cure philosophy. neurodiversity might be forced out of the IACC or perhaps the IACC won't be reauthorized by congress when that comes up.
Or ND might sabotage itself. They might not even need to have ignorant and apathetic parents of these kids who want to help their kids fight back against these people. The personality conflicts might do it for them. This all might mean the beginning of the end of ND.
Of course I realize that the discontented child cries for toasted snow as the old Arab proverb goes, but a guy can dream, can't he?