Sam Wang has a piece on autism risks in the Times, and this graph of the real risks versus the risks that get reported in the newspaper is another tribute to Jenny McCarthy:
(Click on the graphic to go to the article and see the big image.) It turns out that the two risks that parents can possibly control, based on real science, are avoiding prenatal stress and early elective C-sections. The non-risk that’s the talk of the town is vaccination.
By the way, as probably the one person writing here who hasn’t given up on Nate Silver, this is the kind of stuff that 538 could be publishing. It’s a piece by a scientist who works in a discipline that’s involved in a popular controversy writing to explain the results of recent research. It isn’t some fringe-dweller with questionable credentials who’s cherry picking this or that result to gin up controversy where there isn’t any. Silver needs to fire Pielke and start commissioning pieces from people writing at sites like Scienceblogs.