Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Association for Behavior Analysis International officially approves Rotenberg school of painful electric skin shock

Action alert! Advocates against the school of painful electric skin shock "therapy," be advised.

This week in San Antonio, Texas, May 22 - May 26, 2015, at the annual convention of the “largest international network of behavior analysts,” the Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC) has a major official presence.

JRC houses autistics and other children and adults with disabilities and electroshocks them for behaviors as mild as cursing in class and popping their own pimples (See Davies, 2014, Sec. 3: Judge Rotenberg Center Today, Par. 4.) as well as for self-injury and aggression. The latter is possibly information which JRC spokespeople publicly volunteer much more often than they admit shocking children contingent upon their emissions of the long list of minor behaviors as reported by Davies.

For example, in the CBS Evening News video and text article, at 4:45 in the video and within the news text, JRC Director, Glenda Crookes, is only reported saying, “When you put that device on them, they're not hurting themselves anymore, they're not hurting other people anymore….”

In the text, CBS news journalist Amy Burkholder says, “Nancy Weiss, Director of the National Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities at the University of Delaware … disputes JRC's claim shocks are only used for students with self-mutilating or life threatening behaviors.”

So in their May, 2015 convention Program Book, the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI, 2015) shows it has officially approved the JRC. It does have a disclaimer against their official endorsement of any presenter's content (p. 5), but JRC is a "sponsor" (p. 26) and an ABAI committee has "approved" such sponsors as "being aligned with ABAI's mission" (p. 19).

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the science of human and non-human behavior that uses rewards and punishments to eliminate or reduce the frequencies of behaviors the professionals deem to be "problem behaviors." In the past they believed they had the ability to prevent homosexuality (Dawson, 2004) which they had judged to be a "problem of social importance." (See the "social importance" term used by the Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 2015.)

Now this lucrative profession is busy judging autistics as its primary target population. In January 2016, ABAI will hold its Tenth Annual Autism Conference.

Identity-first is more preferred than person-first language among autistic people, so it’s often better to say “an autistic” than a “person with autism,” as leading autistic self-advocate, Lydia Brown, has described. Proud autistic usage is different than the person-first language preferred by many self-advocates with disabilities.

Although ABA can teach social, communication, and academic skills to disabled and autistic youngsters and it can reduce self-injurious and aggressive behaviors in positive ways, many behavior analysts depend upon punishing stimuli much too much, often unnecessarily and unethically, according to Gary LaVigna, BCBA, (Board Certified Behavior Analyst) who promotes Positive Behavior Support (PBS) interventions instead. (See LaVigna, 2013, Affidavit, p. 25. Also read Alternatives to punishment: Solving behavior problems with non-aversive strategies, LaVigna and Donnellan, 1986.)

In 2012 the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network (ASAN) protested against the JRC at ABAI's Seattle Convention. Then the United Nations called JRC's shock and restraint treatment "torture" (M√©ndez, 2013, p. 84-85). Then the majority of the United States Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) Neurological Devices Panel (2014, pp. 3-5) recommended a ban on the JRC shock devices, but the full FDA has yet to issue its decision. For the ongoing status of the JRC protest, see the Twitter hash-tag: ‪#‎CloseTheJRC‬.

According to this week's Program Book, JRC is now prepared to present reports to their behavior analysis experimental and "therapeutic" peers who are now gathering in Texas (ABAI, 2015).

JRC is a "Bronze level sponsor" of the convention (ABAI, 2015, p. 26). The Program Book for this major, once-a-year event says, "ABAI Convention Sponsors have been approved by the Organizational Review Committee as being aligned with ABAI’s mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice (p. 19)." So does this mean that with each more powerful shock device the JRC invents, the science is "growing" with new "vitality"?

In Symposium #55, JRC representatives will present a case for "Frequency Measurement of Stereotypical Behavior (ABAI, 2015, p. 87)." ASAN (2013, p. 10) describes their own autistic stereotypy as follows: "We often use repeated motions, like rocking or flapping our shands/arms, to help us handle our sensory over- or under-load. These are often called stereotypies, self-stimulation, or 'stimming.' Stimming can make it easier to calm ourselves, understand our environment, and think more clearly." However, ABA has been trying to eliminate their stereotypy since the 1960s. (See Rapp and Vollmer, 2004.)

JRC will also present item 47: "Use of Computer Software to Teach Fractions (ABAI, 2015, p. 197)" and item 100: "Checking the Retention of Skills Taught in a One-to-One Setting (p. 250)." They also have a full page ad in the Program Book (p. 207).

Therefore, please tweet your opinion about ABAI's official approval of JRC to @ABAIEvents.

Also, please join the Association for Behavior Analysis International Facebook group and tell them how you feel. There have been other disabled, non-disabled, and autistic self-advocates speaking out very well in this ABAI Facebook community of over 10,000 Facebook users. It is not necessary to know the language of behavior analysis in order to tell them how you feel about the ethics behind their behavior modifications. The behavior analysts often use their scientific jargon, but don't let them intimidate you. They often talk about data, evidence, and science as everything necessary to support their arguments, but the ethics of ABA is above and beyond all that and they often neglect ethics in their talk about data.

Without reporting any "functional analysis" of this blogger's Facebook behavior, a few behaviorists have called me an "attention-seeker" and an internet "troll." If you don't like how they talk to you, don't attack them personally. Stick to the argument. It is easy to block an offensive person's Facebook profile and hopefully you won't even see their profiles in Facebook any more. Most of the vocal members do argue the issues without being personally offensive. I plan to return to this Facebook group often to back you up if you do want to get involved in this manner.

Friday, May 1, 2015

My One Day of Electric Skin Shock Versus My Thirty-Six Years of Anti-Psychotics

Due to my delusional disorder, I've willingly taken anti-psychotic medicine almost continuously since 1979. Before my diagnosis at nineteen, as a boy of about nine, I stuck my finger into a live light-bulb socket to see what would happen. I felt sick to my stomach. I hated it.

"The Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC) is the only facility in the country that disciplines students by shocking them, a form of punishment not inflicted on serial killers or child molesters or any of the 2.2 million inmates now incarcerated in U.S. jails and prisons," said investigative journalist Jennifer Gonnerman in Mother Jones in 2007.

Let me tell anyone who claims that painful electric skin shock is not as bad as anti-psychotics, as the JRC loves to brag about their ability to take kids and adults off of the meds and then zap their brains out for behaviors as mild as "popping their own pimples," that given the choice, I'd take the medicine, any day, any time, with absolutely no uncertainty.

Please follow this link soon to correspond with the White House to tell the President how you feel about his FDA's potential JRC Graduated Electronic Decelerator (GED) ban and then come back to this webpage.

Speaking from self-evidence, the highest standard for assessing the highly subjective phenomena of pain and discomfort, nobody can possibly be as confident as me about this preference for heavy-duty medication over JRC's latest GED-4 version of their horrifying electroshock device (disturbing link warning). Unless they've also experienced both, not even a PhD psychologist who is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) can speak with such confidence, despite how authoritative they may sound when they talk about their scientific collection of behavior data when parents hire them to modify the so-called "problem behaviors" of their disabled children, unless, of course, a BCBA has likewise voluntarily subjected himself to both shocks and psychotropics, which I've never seen anyone state in my countless encounters with them in the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) internet groups.

On the ABA side of the "thread" that fills this blog post, it's interesting to note that doctoral BCBAs, behavioral psychology professors, and influential members of the Association for Behavior Analysis International, these behavior control experts whose job is to present and remove rewards and punishers to and from people with less power, especially during intensive interventions to little autistic boys and girls, have been governing the school of shock pain up from a perch at the JRC's Board of Directors.

Furthermore, the Director of Research at the JRC is a doctoral BCBA, Nathan Blenkish. He defended them before an FDA panel whose majority concluded in April, 2014 that Rotenberg's "noxious" stimulators, their GEDs, "presented a substantial and unreasonable risk of illness or injury." The Obama Administration's full FDA has yet to issue its shock device ban decision.

Please follow this link now to correspond with the White House to tell the President how you feel about his FDA's potential JRC GED ban.

We're back to the shock versus pharmaceutical side effect conversation again. So setting aside the role his assaultive behavior played in her decision, Louisa Goldberg, the mother in the Mother Jones article who sent her son Andrew to the JRC "school of shock" because of too much sleep on account of his meds, made a terrible mistake. I doubt she applied to every institution in the nation and they all turned him down, even though she told journalist Jennifer Gonnerman that "the Rotenberg Center was the only place willing to accept him."

Now I take Geodon because I'm overweight and stocky and it has less of a side effect of weight gain than say Risperdal and especially Zyprexa. What matters is my health with respect to my beefiness and it's good on all acounts. The only problem is my exhaustion, because I can't keep the chubby chasers away with a wooden spoon!

Yes, it makes me sleep a lot, up to sixteen hours a day, sometimes as little as five, usually about twelve. My general body clock waking hour is about 3:00 p.m. Incidentally, I'm proud of the grand, but not superior, ideas that occur as a result of my disorder. My big fat mission to help make the world a less punitive place wouldn't be happening without my mental health challenges, but that's beside the point. I'm not a happy camper, however, when I become pathologically paranoid, so I want and need to take the medicine which does a good job in suppressing it. I'm 55 now. People do go to bed to get their "beauty sleep." Well I've had a hell of a lot of beauty sleep by and by and I like who I see and how I appear when I look inside the mirror, as you can probably tell from this blog post. Not only that, sleeping is blissful! I love to dream! I love falling asleep! As I'm nodding off at night, just before I'm out, as other sleepers have reported, I can laugh out loud to myself while passing over the murky gate between waking and sleeping while dreaming about some kind of nonsense or other, such as wiggly worms inside leaky shoes on a rainy day when the socks are grimy and the feet are clammy.

I used to take Risperdal, for about a decade, which can give a guy gynecomastia, enlarged man breasts. If I do get them, I'll have a good lawsuit against Johnson and Johnson, because "the U.S. Department of Justice said (the corporation) illegally marketed Risperdal and Invega." Besides, there are plenty of transgendered admirers out there. Even though it's not my strong urge to have breasts, I can deal with them if I get them. As an old cub of a guy, I've got that look anyway around my upper torso regions. Once again, the bear trackers have been wearing me down! In a dream world, going through this transition, should one have this wish, should be as simple as taking a pill at bedtime, as opposed to the real-world full medical regimen, the ritual, the ordeal that some biological males undergo to become the actual female person of their fantasies. In reality, however, the effort she performs with the physicians would hopefully render her journey worthwhile, however complex the procedures.

And yes, I could eventually develop tardive dyskinesia after a full half century of treatment, that awfully stigmatizing side effect of the anti-psychotics, potentially irreversible body twitching. I will continue taking the meds if and when that happens. I'm a long-term disability peer advocate. I know that if I get the twitches some day and people start talking to me like I'm some kind of a "freak," all I have to do is to come out of the delusional disorder closet and educate them a bit about people like me, which I did for a decade on a disability speakers bureau. I have seen my friend with vocal and body tics (Tourette Syndrome) function quite well with his friends and employers in this open and honest manner. Stigma dissipates with education of the public. They love to respond with their own mental health stories, even the undiagnosed neurotypicals.

I do worry about diabetes, a highly potential side effect of this medication, but it's never reared its head in the fasting blood sugar tests. The highest reading once was 109. Then it was back to a hundred on the dot. I'll learn to manage it should it ever crop up, as our mother did, but I've got it beat for now. I sold my car to the junk heap, where it belonged, and moved to a studio apartment in a short walk away from the Asbury Park, New Jersey mass transportation hub. I've got to eat. I drop a squat aluminum stool into my blue rectangular push cart to stop a minute and set it on the ground to take a load off my feet as I'm pulling it behind my rear on the way to the markets, continually gaining pedometer tallies of four to fifteen thousand steps just about every day. I follow fairly well the nutritional podcasts of Dr. Ronald Hoffman who is "recognized as one of America’s foremost complementary medicine practitioners."

Therefore, getting back to the shock thread, given a hypothetical choice during some kind of surreal interview with me sitting inside what the Rotenberg Center calls their Mickey Mouse Conference Room, while my wanna-be case manager tries to convince me it's for my own good to sign myself in and let them load my back with a ten-pound pack full of decelerators and strap wires and electrodes all over my arms, legs, and torso, I am positively certain that no matter what kind of behavior I was emitting to get me referred to that place, no matter what kind of harm it was causing me or anybody else, I would take the medicine over shock unequivocally, no matter what kind of pharmaceutical side effect claim she was trying to scare me with, because now I know that when JRC "teachers" trigger them with their remote control buttons, the GEDs can pack "45.5 milliamps of electricity—a shock more than fifteen times as powerful as the stun belts designed to incapacitate violent adult prisoners," said Lydia Brown in the Washington Post in 2014. As soon as I told the case manager, "Take your device and stuff it!" I would fly from that gruesome wolf house as fast as my feet would carry me. (See the ever-so-bizarre JRC fantasy land pictures here.)

I also know now that no matter what kind of problem behavior I might emit, there would always be much better behavioral ways to "treat" me than to torment me with their currents and render me senseless into an electrified zombie, no matter how dangerous my hypothetical behaviors could be, as Gary LaVigna, BCBA, deposed in 2013, under "pains and penalties of perjury," in a court case involving the JRC, and as he said in his landmark 1986 co-authored book, Alternatives to Punishment—Solving Behavior Problems with Non-aversive Strategies.

(I'm not saying that people with my disability are statistically more violent than the general gun-toting populace has already turned out to be. I covered that topic in my 2013 Op-Ed in "Opposing a Mental Health Gun Check Registry.")

So I am not afraid of any medication eventuality. My ultimate goal is to die happy. In this stage of my life, I'm right on target there despite my disorder and despite these magical delusion-to-reality pills that make me sleep too much. The state of my life under Geodon remains awesome, as can be seen in this my own personal brag sheet written in service to the "prisoners," who are not allowed to escape, for Rotenberg takes GED punishment and security measures against what they call "elopement!"

If you haven't done it yet, that's okay, but please follow this link now to correspond with the White House to tell the President how you feel about his FDA's potential JRC GED ban.

Then after you've contacted them, you can add a blog comment below. You'll feel good about doing something tangible and I'll respond to your comment with gratitude.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Parody: So-Called "Deviant Autistic Child" Becomes Multibillion Dollar Benefactor of Applied Behavior Analysis.

— Is she or he different? There’s no need to fear! ABA Man is here! (Featuring Todd Risley of Applied Behavior Analysis - ABA)

Please follow along below:

B. F. Skinner, the founder and primary proponent of what would become of behavior modification, was right to warn the world about the problem of punishment (2014/1953, p. 183), but he was wrong to say it’s unnecessary to “quibble” about how we decide if a behavior is good or bad (1961/1955, p. 3, p.6). He was on the first editorial board of ABA's flagship Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis (JABA) (Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 1968). This would eventually play out as a critical leadership mistake.

In JABA 1(1), Baer, Wolf, and Risley (1968) wrote their frequently cited Some Current Dimensions of ABA and set the tone and scientific guidelines for the ABA age to come. The popular-norm-of-the-day became and remains chief among ABA standards for their ethical judgments regarding what constitutes a "socially important behavior problem," what they had set out to solve. They valued heterosexuality in Current Dimensions to the implied degradation of gays. ABA had also been known to “treat” the “sin” of feminine boy mannerisms. (See Dawson, 2004.) In the same inaugural issue, the very same Risley (1968) published an experiment for torturing away the “autistic behaviors” of a so-called “deviant child.” What did she do wrong? He electro-shocked the young girl and told her mother to spank her for climbing upon the precious family furniture and she acted like a "freak," which is a cruel word from back in the day.

(This blogger recalls seeing a movie called "Freaks" from the mid 1970's at the Red Bank, New Jersey Carlton Theater, currently called the Count Basie Theater. It showed graphic images of disfigured human beings displayed at the side show of a circus. Risley writing this report to his peers in the technical language of ABA science leads the blogger to ask if he could ever view his "subjects" as real human beings.)

 — "Her climbing was a constant source of concern to her parents due to the threat to her life and limb (her body bore multiple scars from past falls; her front teeth were missing, having been left embedded (sic) in a 2 by 4-inch molding from which she had fallen while climbing outside the second story of her house), and the attendant destruction of furniture in the house. She had attended several schools for special children but had been dropped from each because of these disruptive behaviors and her lack of progress." (Quoted directly from Risley, 1968, p. 22.)

— "Punishment with shock for climbing in the laboratory: A hand-held inductorium was constructed which operated on a series of seven 1.5-v flashlight batteries. When a button was pressed this device delivered shock across two contacts ¾ inches apart. The coil, interrupter, and shock contacts were obtained from a commercially available device for shocking live stock (Hot Shot Products, Minneapolis 16, Minnesota). From oscilloscope readings it was estimated that the average voltage output was in the range of 300 to 400 volts, with occasional spikes exceeding 1000 volts. Subjectively, the shock produced a sharp, extremely painful sting, localized in the area of the body to which the contacts were touched, much like being struck with a vigorously applied willow switch. The pain terminated with the removal of the shock, with no after-effects such as redness, swelling of the skin, tingling, or aching. (Observers of the sessions in which shock was applied reported that, on the basis of observable autonomic responses such as flushing, trembling, etc., the subject recovered from the shock episodes much faster than the experimenter.)" (In his own words, Risley, 1968, p. 25.)

— "In the twenty-seventh experimental session (first and second arrows, Fig. 3) when the bookcase had been present for 14 sessions (6.4 session-hr), shock was applied contingent upon climbing. When the child climbed on the bookcase, the experimenter would shout "No!", run to her, take hold of one leg, touch the shock contacts to the calf or lower thigh and depress the switch for approximately 1 second. The experimenter then returned to his chair, looked down at the table until S (Subject) returned to her chair, and then looked up and resumed reinforcing eye contacts." (Exactly as in Risley, 1968, p. 25.)

— I'm helping her so much, she would benefit from a whole slew of various shock procedures. I'll keep it up for 125 days inside the lab and then back at her home. Sooner or later, she'll learn her lesson and then she won't fall off a chair and bump her nose. (Projected and dramatized from the content of the report. For the final day count, see Risley, 1968, p. 30)

— While I'm saving her life and protecting her from herself by shocking the hell out of her, she's also weird. Let me fix that, too. "Rhythmic twisting of the head was the criterion for recording a period of autistic rocking. This rocking usually included movement of the shoulders and upper trunk and was always accompanied by a monotonic humming. S's eyes were either closed or focused on her hand, which was held out in front of her face and rocked her upper body back and forth.... Midway through Session 108 (arrow, Fig. 5) the following procedure was introduced. The experimenter shouted "Stop that!", seized S by the upper arms, and shook her whenever she began rocking. He would wait until her eyes were closed or fixed on her hand before abruptly shouting and shaking her. This event invariably produced a "startle reflex" and flushing in S. This contingency, which terminated each rocking episode, of course, decreased the time spent rocking from 25% to less than 1% of the session (top graph, Fig. 5). More important, the frequency of rocking episodes also decreased steadily from 0.94 per min in the first session where this contingency was applied, to 0.03 per min in the tenth session. This indicated that shouting and shaking S was a punishing stimulus which decreased the probability of the behaviors...."(Quotes are taken word for word from Risley, 1968, p. 31.)

What did he conclude?

— "The benefits to the child, in fact, far exceeded the author's expectations" (p. 34).

He didn't discuss how, if she could learn from the pain of electricity, then she could also have learned from her own falls. To get her off the furniture, buy her a set of monkey bars and train her to join the trapeze act at the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Then tell Risley to shock himself.

So he and Skinner set the stage for misguided judgment. Punishment remains, to this day, the actual, if unapparent, bottom-line rage of ABA, despite their "dissemination" to the contrary.

An ABA promotion might say, "Most behavior analysts use only positive reinforcement in their programs."

If we accept this kind of statement or give them the benefit of the doubt, then we can fairly conclude that unless they are fully schooled in the kinder sister profession of ABA, Positive Behavior Support (PBS) (See LaVigna and Donnellan, 1986), then ABA practitioners are always armed and ready to fire a good shot should the felt need arise, because the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB) contains exactly ten different job requirements containing the word "punishment" in its Task List of skills needed to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).

They may go to punish with over-correction, because it's not as severe as electric shock, which they "only" use in one institution any more, the Judge Rotenberg Center outside of Boston, with most victims arriving from the New York City public school district at the taxpayer expense of $30 million a year.

— In order to be ethical we must manage with contingency combinations of both reward and punishment. I say to Mike, the autistic boy, "Look at me," but he's not looking enough when I give him "a small piece of a specific brand of bologna... for each glance within five seconds of the verbal prompt." I even say, "Good, you looked at me." But he's not looking enough; he's not responding well to the cold cuts. I must "over-correct" him to make him keep looking. He must "move (his) head in one of three positions: up, down, or straight...and maintain each position fifteen seconds, after which" I tell him to look at me again. (Quoted and paraphrased from Foxx, 1977, p. 490-91, first sentence interpreted from implied meaning in the article. )

— But that doesn't sound so good, so instead of "overcorrection," let's call it "restitution training, positive practice of functional behavior, and guided movement training" (McDonald, 1990).

What the heck was she talking about? Looks like gobbledygook.

So now today, as new discoveries of different sets of contingencies accumulate through various configurations of aversive and appetitive consequences, punishment, as coupled simultaneously with reinforcement by the hard punishment advocates or as only the last resort by the genteel minimalists, is the ultimate method of control and compliance.

Also today, on the other hand, standing tall and proud, the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network (ASAN) has announced loud and clear, “Neurodiversity please!” The movement has begun! It's time to insist, "No more forced eye contact!"

Meanwhile, however, neurotypical BCBAs still “treats” autistic "stereotypy," even though it causes no harm. The "actually autistic" speech hasn't sunk in to them yet. If this what Skinner intended, did he hope this would happen before or after he wrote the book he called Verbal Behavior? (Skinner, 1992/1957)

— She must not be adept at flipping, running her finger in rapid succession across each and every page of a National Geographic in order to feel the gentle breeze of the maneuver brushing softly against her cheek. How can she read a magazine and flip it at the same time and place? This is impossible! They're incompatible behaviors!

BCBAs need parents of autistics to worry they won’t fit in with their childhood peers and sustain themselves into and beyond adulthood, somewhat independently. Just as the parental group, Autism $peaks (A$), raises its abundant funds with no "actual autistics" speaking, so do lucrative BCBA salaries depend upon the same cancer analogy that A$ uses. This is one reason why ASAN boycotts A$:

— Autism at age two? Tragic disease. Cure it now and prevent the divorce!

As for BCBAs walking in stride with A$, Lerner (2011) reported, "Eric Larsson...who founded the Lovaas Institute Midwest, an autism treatment center.... says ABA is more than just a treatment — it’s a way to rescue children 'from the ravages of autism.' He tells parents that nearly half of children can recover if they start ABA soon enough.... 'They’re coming to us because they want to cure their child,' he said. 'Just like you or I would do if we had cancer.'"

— So target Bx (behavior) for elimination. We've heard a grunt! Experiment upon this subject. Sit her down for intensive therapy! So what if she's overstimulated! She's not looking into my eyeballs! I'll teach her this or else— She's pushing me away! If we can’t fix it with lemon on the tongue, then send for the patty wagon! Lock her away!

(Nothing would satisfy this blogger more than to discover how this criticism is completely inaccurate, but he fears for its truth. If they don't like to hear this kind of feedback, then it's easy to conclude that they can dish it out, but they can't take a taste of their own medicine.)

Meanwhile, at their own gatherings, autistic groups actually embrace ABA's "God-awful stereotypy,” but they don’t call it abnormal. Instead they might call it communication and say to ABA, "Leave us alone when we cause nobody harm!" They’re even holding “Stim-Ins” with stim toys to educate members of the public that self-stimulation stim is okay during under-stimulation.

So can a special education teacher of a self-contained class do the same as ASAN and teach his students to embrace the "deviant child's" unconventional activities rather than aim with the slings of behavior reduction? Can we move her out to the mainstream class and teach her typical peers to support her even when she doesn't sit as still as them while she studies along at an exceptional rate, either faster or slower? Does the BCBA say, “Quiet hands, stop flapping?” Does a university diploma really care whether or not a "noisy" hand reaches out to accept it on Graduation Day? Does Oracle really care if she's rocking her trunk while she generates code and maximizes the return on their investment in her?

Therefore, please allow the disabled peer advocates to present to the public the “deviant” child of 1968, now the virtual autistic elder stateswoman of 2015, the next Bill Gates of the autism spectrum, a member of the group so bold at times as to call themselves evolved, the next multibillionaire to fill every library on the planet with a network of PC's, whether or not Gates truly does have Asperger's Syndrome. You see, he's only worth about $80 billion. His lifetime giving, about $30 billion.

Maybe some day she'll even donate to another worthy charity: Lobby groups paid to persuade politicians to legislate insurance coverage for autistic children to receive Applied Behavior Analysis "treatments."

— Lucky stiffs!

References (to be completed)

Baer, D. M., Wolf, M. M., & Risley, T. R. (1968). Some current dimensions of applied behavior analysis. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 1(1), pp. 91-97. Retrieved from

Dawson, M. (2004, January 18). The misbehaviour of behaviourists: Ethical challenges to the autism-ABA industry [web log post]. Retrieved from

LaVigna, G. W. and Donnellan, A. M. (1986). Alternatives to punishment: Solving behavior problems with non-aversive strategies [Reprinted 2007]. New York, N.Y.: Irvington Publishers

Risley, T. R. (1968). The effects and side effects of punishing the autistic behaviors of a deviant child. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 1(1), 21-34. Retrieved from

Skinner, B. F. (1961). Freedom and the control of men. Cumulative record [First published 1955] (Enlarged Edition, pp. 3-18). East Norwalk, CT, US: Appleton-Century-Crofts. doi:10.1037/11324-001

Skinner, B. F. (1992). Verbal behavior [First published 1957]. Cambridge, MA: B. F. Skinner foundation.

Skinner, B. F. (2014). Science and human behavior [Original work published 1953]. Cambridge, MA: B. F. Skinner Foundation. Retrieved from

Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior. (1968). Administrative content: Journal masthead, notices, indexes, etc. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 1(1) Retrieved from

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Reward and Consent , © is January 15, 2007 to the current date. All rights reserved (and stuff like that). E-mail me for permission to reproduce in part or in full. Please link to and cite passages quoted or paraphrased from here.

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sent is not responsible for links on the site. For example, I use keywords "Operant Conditioning" in the YouTube search field for the videos displayed below the archives on the left. Google selects the videos and the results change from time to time. Please email me if anything is not educational and germane to the subject and I will reevaluate the search.

I am an advocate for people with disabilities certified to teach special education with a Master of Arts in Teaching. I am not a Licensed Psychologist or a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. When in doubt, seek the advice of an MD, a PhD, or a BCBA. My ability to analyze the ethics of ABA stems from the fact that I am disabled and ABA interventions are often done to people like me, which I voluntarily accept, but only when I alone am the person granting consent, and not a parent, sibling, guardian, or institution.