I have tried everything I can find online (including here) and nothing will stick. The touchpad comes back to life after a few seconds. The Windows driver had a disable-entirely option. I do not want to use the touchpad at all, so anything up to and including a hardware fix is now open for consideration.
The laptop is an HP Pavilion DM1 and the Linux is a fresh install of Mint Lisa (12) with GNOME.
And yes, I tried everything here with no effect.