(From an interview titled The Cost of Autism)
What we’re seeing now is the erosion. We’re on the verge of collapse of over 200-year-old democracy because the pharmaceutical industry has poisoned our entire political system. It has poisoned our elected officials, elections, the CDC, the FDA, NIH, EPA, all these regulatory agencies supposed to be protecting us. They’re all captured by industry. They all end up working for the industries that they’re supposed to be regulating and protecting us from. It’s a political problem. We’re on the verge of political collapse. It’s an economic problem as the costs of autism are catastrophic. In 2015, there was a good study on the cost of autism and said the cost of autism at that time was $268 billion a year in the United States.
They projected that by 2025, we’d be looking at $1 trillion a year in autism costs just in the US. I was curious about a point of reference and I thought to myself, “What’s the US Defense Department budget?” I went and looked that up. The US Defense Department’s budget is about $750 billion. $1 trillion a year in autism cost is greater than the US Defense Department cost, which is our largest single line item in the US budget. There’s no plan for how to pay for this. There’s no strategy for how to pay for the educational, housing, healthcare costs associated with autism, yet we’re looking at $1 trillion a year in cost by 2025. There’s a study that came out in 2020 that was talked about at the conference at NC State in North Carolina. They looked at the ten-year cost of autism in the US. They’re projecting $7 trillion in autism costs in the US over the period of 2020 to 2029. That’s a disaster unlike anything we’ve ever seen before.