New Civilization News: A Story about a Drug Representative of the Big Pharmas    
 A Story about a Drug Representative of the Big Pharmas29 comments
picture25 Nov 2007 @ 20:05, by Gerald Vest

We should accept things as they are without difficulty. Our mind should be soft and open enough to understand things as they are. When our thinking is soft, it is called imperturbable thinking. This kind of thinking is always stable. It is called mindfulness., (Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind by Shunryu Suzuki)

As many of you know, I have written several logs related to the Mental Health Industry, the increasing use of prescription drugs for treatment, especially for children and youth who are over-diagnosed and identified and labeled with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders(ADHD).

This article describes how a psychiatrist was recruited as a drug company representative, wined and dined, while receiving large sums of money to promote their drugs. He discovered that he was withholding vital information that could be hazardous to the health of his patients and to his reputation as a doctor. He began to see that he was losing his integrity and ethics so he dropped his position as drug representative(dealer) and told his story to the NY Times. This is worth your time to read as he describes how the Big Pharmas and the AMA are in collusion and showing their lack of respect for patients or customers who need help with depression and other mental health "disorders." (Daniel Carlat is an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at Tufts University School of Medicine and the publisher of The Carlat Psychiatry Report.)


I have written several logs on the dangers of the Big Pharmas, the mental health industry, and about practitioners who have lost their way. Our helping professionals who close their eyes to corrupt practices and labeling, knowing that their "Code of Ethics" is their guide to practice, are also endangering their clients. "Our primary concern is our client...."

"The mission of the social work profession is rooted in a set of core values. These core values, embraced by social workers throughout the profession's history, are the foundation of social work's unique purpose and perspective:

social justice
dignity and worth of the person
importance of human relationships

This constellation of core values reflects what is unique to the social work profession. Core values, and the principles that flow from them, must be balanced within the context and complexity of the human experience."

I appreciate that you take the time to read these brief posts. Please feel free to respond to my logs/blogs. As a professor of social work, I am interested in learning how students, professionals and others feel about these practices and issues related to our core values.

Note: Photo by Mike Connealy

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26 Nov 2007 @ 01:19 by a-d : Is this
is this the article you had in mind, Jerry? Quite "interesting" and... I can understand the dilemma of these different doctors, Pharm Sales Reps plus the rest.
They have literally never been exposed to any other thinking as HEALING Agents!
I personally think THIS is where the Big Change will dawn into both the Minds of the Professionals as well as the Patients; when we as a Collective start understanding HEALTH better & better!... That will happen pretty much in the same pave as we Humans allow ourselves to re-member our Origins as Divine Beings!... made perfect.... destroyed by our own faulty "Culture"!... that allows money to be used by some chosen groups' Weapon against the Common Man and Tool for these Users to achieve their particular goals & dreams of Good Life -as they are the only ones who have access to that tool more & more -against the rest of us ... as we can see very much clearer today than ever before. Rising and ever expanding Consciousness is that one thing they can not put back in the Bottle, once the Gene is out.... and It is!....  

26 Nov 2007 @ 02:06 by jerryvest : Yes, Astrid....thanks
for visiting the article and for commenting. I hope other Drug Reps will come forward and discuss their experiences with the Big Pharmas and change their practices as well. It's as though they are treating their patients with the drugs that they know are not as effective as other brands, yet will withhold vital information from them and continue to take money from the manufacturers of the drugs to supplement their practice. I wonder how this doctor did not see the unethical practice behind his work as Drug Rep?

I'll fix the link so that it is more visible.  

26 Nov 2007 @ 02:22 by a-d : Here are some
MD's who already have awakened to this new, higher consciousness and hence using (new)different Healing Agents.

I know this process... I've gone through it myself! There was a time when I didn't think twice about all the Pills I "poured up" on the Medicine Tray!... Many times I was thinking to myself how wonderful that we had all these pills, to heal the poor sick... but slowly I noticed: NONE of them ever got back their health!....That's when the ground under my feet started to become a little shaky... just like for this MD in the article (that I gave the link).....  

26 Nov 2007 @ 14:26 by jerryvest : Very good source for referrals,
Astrid. I am most familiar with Dr. Chopra's contributions to health and wellbeing. He has been a long time advocate for alternative medicine and for living a balanced life--physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. He also makes the tv circuits as a celebrity so I'm sure that others are aware of his work as well. It is good that you discovered that the pill industry is primarily related to treating short-term symptoms.

This is a good article for our elders and others who are losing their lives every day with their sedentary life styles. It's never too late to start a daily health routine, but it is much easier if you start while you are younger and have the energy to stay with it. I advise my students to don't sit all day in class and at their computers and expect their lives and relationships to be filled with energy and joy. They are destined to spend much of their elder years in doctor's offices and taking lots of pills.

Vital Signs
Aging: Walking Faster and Outpacing Death
Researchers who followed the health of older people for almost a decade found that those who walked more quickly were less likely to die. {link:}

Thank you.  

26 Nov 2007 @ 20:25 by jerryvest : The Big Pharmas spend more on lobbying
than any other group. I know that most participants in the NCN would not be surprised by this corrupt industry, but I want it to be part of our record.
Senators who protected Big Pharma received millions of dollars from drug companies-

Monday, November 19, 2007 by: David Gutierrez
Printable version Key concepts: Big Pharma, drug industry and the FDA.

(NewsTarget) Senators who received substantial donations from pharmaceutical companies were instrumental in making a new drug bill more industry-friendly, according to studies by nonprofit groups and remarks by some of the senators themselves.

The bill, which passed the Senate 93-1 and now goes before the House of Representatives, was introduced in order to correct the errors in FDA procedure that allowed Merck's painkiller Vioxx to remain on the market for years, even after evidence began to amass that it led to potentially fatal heart attacks. It was based on recommendations by the Institute of Medicine, a division of the National Academy of Sciences.

While the institute's recommendation to allow the FDA to monitor the safety of products after approval was included in the final bill, it was significantly weakened at the instigation of Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H.. Gregg has received $168,500 from the pharmaceutical industry since 2001.

Other recommendations fared even less well. A proposal to allow the importation of less expensive drugs from other countries was defeated 49-40. According to research by the Center for Responsive Politics and PoliticalMoneyLine, these 49 senators (less than 50 percent of the Senate) have received nearly 75 percent of the donations made by the drug industry since 2001, a total of $5 million.

In addition, a proposal to ban advertising of high-risk drugs for two years and another to curb conflicts of interest in the drug approval process were defeated by Senators who have received substantial industry contributions.

Even the bill's main sponsors weakened its provisions to help the drug industry, by modifying a proposal that would have required that all clinical drug studies be made part of the public record, and not just those submitted to the FDA. Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass. has received $174,000 from the industry since 2001, and Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., has received $78,000.

"It's not that money buys votes," said Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who cast the only vote against the bill. "But you have a culture in which big money has significant influence. Big money gains you access, access gives you the time to influence people."

The pharmaceutical industry spends more on lobbying -- $855 million between 1998 and 2006 -- than any other industry in the United States, according to the Center for Public Integrity.  

26 Nov 2007 @ 20:39 by jerryvest : Have you ever seen such criminal
activity by the Big Pharmas. Seems that they feel pretty safe to do all of these corrupt practices during this administration, but they can make so many billions of $'s on a drug, that a penalty of a few million $'s doesn't phase them. They will continue this as long as our FDA and congress continue to get their paychecks from them.

"A sad fact is that the money collected in these settlements is paid to the federal government, individual states, lawyers and whistleblowers. None of the monies are used for drug safety, efficacy testing or to compensate the victims who are hurt by the overuse of the drugs that results from this illegal activity."

September: A Banner Month For Drug Industry Crime
Thursday, November 01, 2007 by: Herb Newborg
Printable version Key concepts: Big Pharma, drug industry and the FDA.

(NewsTarget) September was a banner month for settlements by drug companies and medical device manufacturers for criminal activity in the United States, but not because of any effort by the FDA who is charged with regulating the drug and medical device industry. These cases were largely the result of the efforts of individual “whistleblowers” within the companies that are paid a percentage of any penalty collected, ranging from 15% to 30%.

On September 10th, Sanofi-Aventis agreed to pay a settlement of $190 million for violations of the False Claims Act over a pricing and marketing scheme for its drug, Anzemet, an anti-emetic drug used in cancer treatment. The scheme bilked Medicare and Medicaid by falsely inflating the price charged to the government to increase the prescribing doctor’s profits, thereby encouraging greater prescribing of its drug.

On September 27th, Bristol Meyers Squibb agreed to pay $515 million to settle charges that it illegally promoted Abilify, an anti-psychotic drug for pediatric use and to treat dementia. Neither use is approved by the FDA. Further charges involved illegal inducements in the form of consulting fees and luxury trips paid to prescribing doctors. A pricing scheme to defraud Medicaid rounds out the list of crimes Bristol Meyers Squibb was successful in settling their way out of.

This month four companies: Zimmer, Johnson & Johnson unit DePuy Orthopaedics, Smith & Nephew and Biomet entered into an agreement to pay $311 million to settle charges they paid kickbacks to surgeons to use their products. The four companies represent nearly the entire market for replacement hips and knees.

Medtronics, a maker of devices used in spinal surgeries, has been accused this month of providing physicians with inordinately high consulting fees, free travel and other perks to distort decision-making among physicians and obscure the best interest of patients. This comes on the heals of last years $40 million settlement for similar activities.

The first payments to individual states began this month under the $634 million settlement negotiated by Purdue Frederick Co. Inc. over knowingly and fraudulently misbranding OxyContin as being less addictive, less subject to abuse and diversion, and less likely to cause tolerance and withdrawal problems than other pain medications.

These large “settlements” are nothing new. Some notable past cases include:

Schering Sales Corp. and its parent company, Schering-Plough Corp., agreed to pay $435 million earlier this year to settle allegations it lied to the government about drug prices and illegally promoted the drugs Temodar and Intron A for the treatment of cancers they were not approved for by the FDA.

In 2004, Pfizer Inc. paid $430 million in fines to settle allegations it marketed the epilepsy drug Neurontin for pain and psychiatric illnesses. Neither use is approved by the FDA.

In 2001, TAP Pharmaceutical Products paid $875 million to settle allegations it inflated prices and bribed doctors to prescribe its prostate cancer drug Lupron.

A sad fact is that the money collected in these settlements is paid to the federal government, individual states, lawyers and whistleblowers. None of the monies are used for drug safety, efficacy testing or to compensate the victims who are hurt by the overuse of the drugs that results from this illegal activity.

This is particularly egregious considering that the Oxycontin settlement alone represents more money than the FDA spent on drug safety and efficacy monitoring and regulation for the entire year in 2006.

About the author
Herb Newborg is president of Chiropractic America LLC. Chiropractic America was established in 1994 and maintains a website built to serve as an outlet for doctors nationwide to champion natural health care and lifestyle choices and for patients to have access to spinal health information. Chiropractic America has an advisory board comprised of leading chiropractors to ensure doctors and patients have access to the most current, accurate, and relevant information.  

29 Nov 2007 @ 13:40 by skillz : Mickey Finn visits the inactive
Good artical and coments. Its a subject im quite passionate about and this sentence posted -
"This is a good article for our elders and others who are losing their lives every day with their sedentary life styles. It's never too late to start a daily health routine, but it is much easier if you start while you are younger and have the energy to stay with it. I advise my students to don't sit all day in class and at their computers and expect their lives and relationships to be filled with energy and joy. They are destined to spend much of their elder years in doctor's offices and taking lots of pills."

- is great. One fact that you have to remember is that companys do not make much money out of sensible healthy active people. The pharma companys only proffit from the weak unhealthy and the gullable (normaly if a person is 1 of them they are all 3). Normal human living which includes - Forraging for food, cooking a good meal, building living quarters, sports, sex, strong friendships, the consumption of psycedelics, dancing - all these activitys should be included in our life, for every activity that is lacking their will be a health deficiancy, and for every alement you'll be sure there will be a pill for it from a money driven company. So it seems that people these days are instead of correcting a lack of right activity in there lives they are believing in the notion that a small pressed chemical pill will be a subtitute for change in their lifestyle. Its allmost like believing in magic and reminds me somewhat of witch doctor practices. It seems thesedays that if anything comes in a respectable enough looking package people will except it, almost as if it comes from god. Right infomation and comman sense are the key. If a person is sensible enough they should know to keep active to keep healthy without being told by a "professional practitioner". I believe that increased activity is more important than a picky diet although u obviously couldn't live off of jelly babys.

In conclusion i dont believe that the problem to all this lies within the big pharma corporations for they are only doing what every other capitalist does in this society, they're just playing the game. Its society itself that makes us ill. From the moment we're born into this capitalized world we are being poisoned. Im trapped in the same society as everybody else and even i find it difficult in this society to stay active and healthy all day as there is nothing much to do that doesn't require money, and the exercise that i do do i have to pay for at the a gym. Everywhere i turn, instead of being mother natures offerings there are shops and fast food establistments that sell the worst type of food that we could possibly put in our bodys and im not just talking about cheese burgers (which im quite fond of). People need to rethink their lives (and no doubt there'll be a pill for that too) and this means people like the same human beings as us but just very very wealthy. These people do not gain more and more money to feed themselves, their motives are phsycological or UNphsycoLOGICAL where for them they are seeking forfillment through pointless cash gain, a little like believing in medicine.

Anyway, ive rambled enough


29 Nov 2007 @ 14:46 by jerryvest : Thanks for your excellent response,
Steve. I appreciate your thoughtful comments. I especially appreciate that you put the responsibility on our society and the individual who will not take responsibility for their health and wellbeing. It is very hard at times to live in a social environment where corporate or capitalistic america will do whatever it takes to attract unconscious human beings who are eager to get a quick fix or a quick meal at a fastfood mart. Obviously, we should beware of these "packaging schemes" that you mention and become mindful.

Also, when we are stressed, anxious and depressed, our outlets or doors of compensation just auotmatically open up to help us balance our psyches-instincts, so we do need to be more observant of these mechanisms as well.  

29 Nov 2007 @ 18:01 by a-d : Hmmmm.... could this
be another interesting thread here? I leave it for Jerry to decide: " our outlets or doors of compensation just automatically open up to help us balance our psyches-instincts,..." this statement is questionable....
If you had said Divine Intervention is the ONLY thing that can save people below a certain frequency - " amount" of Life energy, I would have agreed... Indeed THIS LACK of "doors opening" is exactly what keeps so many billions of people in the mire they are!.... and make no mistake; our Oppressors have known this a loooong time!.... This is why they put so much effort into Brain washing & Mind control etc because it lowers people's CAPACITY to rise (into the amounts of Life energy that would be needed for them to actively change their lives -for the better.
David Hawkins talks about this in his book: "Power vs Force". While Dr Hawkins is a real "Hot Air" blower in many ways; a lot of -in my opinion- what I would call pseudo science, his greatness comes from him having had this Spiritual REVELATION, which unequivocally expresses a Cosmic Truth/ Fact, that ANY honest LIFE-TRUTH-Seeker has witnessed for themselves: we CANNOT rise from the confusion fear, guilt, shame and -eventually- apathy these FORCED- UPON-US conditions achieve in us/our Psyche.
We NEED help from a 'Divine Intervention' in which ever FORM that appears!...
This is the Essense of Hawkins' discovery -and he is very right about it!...
Too bad he totally bi-passed his own discovery, diving right into a lot of pseudo sh---!.... but hey.... he wanted to make a career out of it... he is not alone having done this ( kind of ) Blunder!...and -of course; it made him a celebrity and a lot of money to "sell out"...too bad.... yet...)...
But I know from own experience, that he hit a "Cosmic Nerve"!....
I -e.g.- would never had survived my "Nervous Brake Down" (what a label! , but... heyyy; that is what it was -sort of... though I would re-frase it to "Spiritual Break Down")had it not been for a Divine Intervention; something I did not (know to ) search/look for came and helped me out from the Pit, giving me that added Life-energy, I so badly needed, in order to slowly crawl back to stand up on my own feet again, as it were. And that alone took years.

I later on realized what a "smart Set-Up by Universe/God/Life this is: this 'Divine Intervention' is usually the One, that makes us aware of and convinced about our own Divinity and the Divinity in ALL!... and from THAT discovery starts our New Life-Journey.
And this is what GENUINE : "being Born again" into Christ-conciousness is all about! "Christ/os" being the Cosmic PROTO Type for a Being who has found and accepted his/her own ONEness with "God" ON GOD'S TERMS!!!
Here is where we stop using Pharma Pills ; usually the very FIRST thing we do!... ( this is a very important point!)
From there on we start discover a Life we did not know about before: Our Health is in our own Hands, The Health of our Environment( & the whole Planet ) is in our own hands, etc etc. With all this truth in mind: rest assured, that the TRUE Mission of ALL the Pharma Pills is to even further LOWER the frequency/vibration of the Life energy in the people who swallow them!... It is NOT a mistake that Pharma Pills are the biggest KILLER of people in any Western Country.... all "legally" prescribed by the ones with "license to kill" as the expression goes.... just that alone should raise some red flags in us, eh?

The Doctors themselves (and the Nurse ) are at least initially un-aware of this, but just as the Dr in the Article here; at some point -if ANY integrity still remains in the Dr, S/he will come to Place of Second Thoughts, just by observing their Patients' "progress"...
It IS all a big scam. Thank God for Divine Intervention! : )  

29 Nov 2007 @ 19:32 by jerryvest : Hi Astrid....I am open to everything
so I will accept that we should question everything. However, as you take issue with the "Doors of Compensation," I would like to argue that according to the Instintual Theory by Oscar Ichazo, when our instincts (basic need requirements) of 'self-preservation,'relations,' and 'adaptation', go out of balance a door will open up. When we don't get our food requirements, we will see that people will do what ever it takes to meet this need. Also, when relationships are out of balance, people do all kinds of things, even murder their loved ones. You've probably noticed that after having a good meal and being fulfilled, we may still open the refrigerator to find something more to meet an emotional need. People smoke cigarettes to lower their high feelings all the time during a party. There are numerous examples of how our body-mind develops a contradiction and an outlet of compensation just opens up to attempt a balance and find an equilibrium(mostly unconsciously).

Anyway, the theory itself offers 3 degrees of compensation and the 3rd. degree is most dangerous as we can become addicted or even become psychotic or commit acts of violence and crime. In this theory, some doors are safer than others in a relative sense, such as, over-eating, over-working, safe-sex and certain drugs or chemicals such as caffein and sweets. Obviously, too much of anything can often be harmful so it is important to recognize at what level or degree that we consciously use doors to compensate. Our society is not perfect as we know so our human spirit does have difficulty experiencing our true nature.

I think your comments about unity are important, yet it is very difficult to maintain high levels of consciousness and wellness in a very low and disfunctional society. Even our animal friends are suffering because humans use them for sport and for competition.

Anyway, thanks for contributing to this discussion. I don't see us as being re-born, but, rather, transforming and transcending our patterns of conditioning that support and sustain our egos. Thus, what follows our spiritual Work/Practice is an open, accepting and appreciating mind or essence that has always been with us as a fair witness. I feel as though I get glimpses of this devine state of being, living and doing on occassion, especially while playing with my grandkids.

And, hey, these Big Pharmas and other corporations are real killers of our spirit and of our nature as you suggest and it is important that we continue to raise the "Red Flags."  

29 Nov 2007 @ 23:29 by a-d : OK, ... I got it....(I hope this is more
English expression!... )
"Compensation" doesn't necessarily HAVE to mean REAL -as in Divine- assistance, but more like SOME kind of emotional Vent/System, to which "Bandwagon" I definitely will join you! : )
I used the frase "born again" (BACK into ones own true Authentic Me -or Christ consciousness, as it was called for thousand of years... the way we at Birth/Made by Heaven made for Heaven, so to speak...or to fulfill ourselves as Cosmic Beings... Only a fully evolved Christos can become a Cosmic Being,eternal & all that goes /come with that! ) because that is the one officially attributed as Jesus words (in NT ) But the frase has been so mis-used & perverted so it has almost become repulsive!....

Yuppp, Red Flags (should go up/be up ) everywhere around us! ; )

You're the Best, Jerry! : )  

30 Nov 2007 @ 14:50 by jerryvest : Do read the responses from
the Big Pharmas to this article by Dr. Carlat. This is one of the responses to his article from a doctor:

Let Doctors Act
To the Editor:

Daniel Carlat, in detailing how drug companies have co-opted medical education, says the solution is to revoke the accreditation of any continuing medical education financed by the drug industry (''Diagnosis: Conflict of Interest,'' Op-Ed, June 13).

"How about this? The practice would stop overnight if prominent physicians stopped accepting the exorbitant fees and emoluments the industry offers to participate in these programs. For years, the medical community has turned a blind eye to its complicity in this conflict of interest, comfortably sitting back and watching fingers being pointed at the pharmaceutical industry. Truly a case of ''physician, heal thyself.''

Cory Franklin, M.D.
Wilmette, Ill., June 13, 2007
Op-Ed Contributor
Diagnosis: Conflict of Interest

Published: June 13, 2007

THE revelation that the diabetes drug Avandia can potentially cause heart disease is the latest in a string of pharmaceutical disappointments. Vioxx was pulled from the market in 2004 because it doubled the risks for heart attacks and strokes. Eli Lilly recently paid $750 million to settle lawsuits alleging that Zyprexa causes diabetes. Many have criticized the Food and Drug Administration as being too lax about monitoring drug safety.

While those criticisms have merit, there is another culprit: the transformation of continuing medical education into an enterprise for drug marketing. The chore of teaching doctors how to practice medicine has been handed to the pharmaceutical industry. As a result, dangerous side effects are rarely on the curriculum.

Most states require that doctors obtain a minimum number of credit hours of continuing medical education each year to maintain their medical licenses. Not so long ago, most of these courses were produced and paid for by universities and medical associations. But this has changed drastically over the past decade.

According to the most recent data available from the national organization in charge of accrediting the courses, drug-industry financing of continuing medical education has nearly quadrupled since 1998, from $302 million to $1.12 billion. Half of all continuing medical education courses in the United States are now paid for by drug companies, up from a third a decade ago. Because pharmaceutical companies now set much of the agenda for what doctors learn about drugs, crucial information about potential drug dangers is played down, to the detriment of patient care.

For example, GlaxoSmithKline footed the bill for dozens of educational courses intended to emphasize the benefits of Avandia over other drugs. An influential Internet-based educational program paid for by the company focused on specific studies that highlighted Avandia’s advantages without discussing one of the drug’s most worrisome side effects, increased levels of the lipids implicated in heart disease.

Avandia’s chief competitor, a drug from Takeda Pharmaceuticals called Actos, improves lipid levels but was hardly mentioned. When GlaxoSmithKline’s program did cite Actos, it did so tepidly. The information in the course was presented by noted diabetes academics paid by GlaxoSmithKline and other drug companies.

GlaxoSmithKline is not the only offender. The major organizations in diabetes education, like the National Diabetes Education Initiative, offer dozens of continuing medical education courses on diabetes that are free to doctors and paid for by drug companies. Predictably, each course focuses on the advantages of the sponsor’s product and minimizes discussion of dangerous side effects.

Education that doubles as advertising for drug companies occurs in all branches of medicine. Merck promoted Vioxx for arthritis by using programs for continuing medical education, which helped contribute to the more than 100 million prescriptions of the drug before it was pulled from the market.

According to Dr. David Graham, a safety researcher for the Food and Drug Administration, Vioxx was responsible for up to 140,000 cases of serious heart disease from 1999 until 2004, when it was withdrawn. But the potential cardiac dangers of Vioxx were played down in the courses paid for by Merck. In one instance, the company canceled lectures it had sponsored by a Stanford researcher who had mentioned, in talks to doctors, the cardiac risks from taking Vioxx.

Drug companies should never have been allowed to become the primary educator for America’s doctors. The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, a nonprofit organization composed of the major medical associations, establishes the rules that govern continuing medical education. According to the guidelines, companies are forbidden from directly paying doctors who teach continuing medical education courses.

But the standards have a loophole that allows drug companies to circumvent the regulations. They hire for-profit “medical education communication companies” to organize the courses. These companies receive millions of dollars from drug companies to create course work and to pay doctors to deliver the content. Sometimes, they pay doctors to give lectures to other doctors. Other times, prominent doctors are paid to be listed as the authors of journal articles that are written by ghost writers, a practice that was extensively documented in court records from a lawsuit against Pfizer.

Either way, the content is rarely developed by the identified experts. Instead, it is developed by the undisclosed communication company, which is paid by the sponsoring pharmaceutical company.

Essentially, this is a new twist on that well-known instrument of corruption, money laundering. Drug companies don’t directly pay doctors to teach courses. Instead, they pay someone else to cut the checks. Similarly, the drug companies don’t explicitly tell doctors to say good things about their products. Instead, they hire a company to write good things about their products and to pay doctors to deliver the messages.

These shenanigans were recently spotlighted by Senator Max Baucus, Democrat of Montana, and Senator Charles Grassley, Republican of Iowa, of the Senate Finance Committee. In April, their committee released a report, two years in the making, concluding that drug companies have used educational grants unethically as a way of marketing their products.

In response, the guidelines regarding commercial support for continuing medical education are being reviewed. The solution could hardly be simpler: any continuing medical education that is paid for by the drug industry should not be accredited. Drug companies could still pay for any educational event, article or pamphlet they choose, but their courses and materials would no longer bear the imprimatur and implied credibility of accreditation.

Doctors, in turn, would be encouraged to seek medical education from sources that are not financed by drug companies. A renewed commitment to unbiased education would allow doctors to learn about drug risks sooner. This would be good for doctors, and even better for their patients.

Daniel Carlat, a professor at Tufts Medical School, is the editor in chief of The Carlat Psychiatry Report.


2 Dec 2007 @ 02:00 by a-d : More on Big Pharmas

2 Dec 2007 @ 15:28 by jerryvest : Thanks for this resource, Astrid.
I do remember when Thalidomide was put on the market and put at risk thousands of families and disalbed 10,000 children. It is very vivid in my memory as it was permitted to be on the market, even after the dangers were known. I believe in recent years it was brought back to treat some disease, but forget the sources.  

2 Dec 2007 @ 19:00 by skillz : Allot to cover
but sadly dont have the time. Ah i could go on for ages on the topic. Many things on many points from the above that i'd like to comment on. The open door and compensation thing i kindof agree on, ive recently given up smoking but find myself munchin on all kinds of snack foods instead of lighting up.

"I think your comments about unity are important, yet it is very difficult to maintain high levels of consciousness and wellness in a very low and disfunctional society. Even our animal friends are suffering because humans use them for sport and for competition."

- I think this is a very true comment and something that affects me as much as everyone else. Sometimes i find that if my head is too up in the spiritual clouds i cannot function well in the mad world around me, i need to be consciously spiritual aware without being totaly spiritual which can make me weak in this society. Astrid is a very powerful beautifuly minded spiritual person and can be due to her enviroment, so ur responses are usualy very spiritual in nature and i sometimes find it difficult to relate as i have yet to move on to that next level of spirituality. I dont allways understand allot of words (like most basic accademic people) and its the majority that outway the few of us. So i try to simplify everything i write ,not for the benifit of u guys but any un"educated" folk who may stumble accross this matterial. As you may have noticed my spelling is very poor but i hope you dont think anyless of me because of it. Anyway what im getting at is that the people who are the problem in this society will also be the solution. We need to comunicate to these people in a way that they can understand. We can all eventualy agree on the underlying truth of things but then where do we go from there. The solutions to the complex problems created by society are simple, its apllying them into society that aint.

Ok so WE know that pharma comps are bad (consuming anything with a name like Thalidomide is asking for trouble) whether we discovered this from reading between the lines or by being convinced by lots of written evidence, is not important now. How do we change things for the sake of ourselves and all humanity now and future generations?  

2 Dec 2007 @ 20:42 by jerryvest : Thanks again for contributing to this
discussion, dkill. First off, I don't give a hoot about spelling in our disucssion groups as I would prefer interacting with others who aren't judgmental about how we use the language. My wife is an English teacher and she, like me, knows that we must start where people are and not try to make them into our images or ideas about perfection--whatever that means?

I believe that you are correct in acknowledging that the important aspect of our discussion is to find solutions and alternatives for improving ourselves and our society. I am a social worker so it is part of my life to look for ways to improve the quality of lives, health and relationships in my community and beyond. I realize that it is important for us to identify the under-served, minorities and mistreated members of our society and to find ways to empower them through education and with resources so that they can get a 'head start' and have opportunites that are often only open to upper income persons and upper classes. We shouldn't even have a class system; however, it seems to me that so many people are looking for a king, a big daddy, an authority figure or someone to just tell them how to think and behave. As an example, I work in a university and many of us dislike the hierarchy (superior rank, authority, power, and benefits) given to the administration of any organization. What makes them special are those who surround them, and are chosen by them to give them whatever they want--including their own personal power, ideas, time and energy. Case in point -- Why should a coach be paid $500,000+ to coach a football team with 50 players while a teacher who has 150 students be paid such a disproportinate salary. But, like someone tells us all the time, no one said that we would be treated fairly, so just get over it!!! If we don't, we will spend our lives feeling inferior, angry and ineffectual.

So,..."How do we change things for the sake of ourselves and all humanity now and future generations?" I think we need to practice what we teach. Be honest, respectful, open and non-judgmental. As a teacher, I can also use our knowledge, skills, values and wisdom to promote teamwork, cooperation, networking and interaction. I can learn from our next generations by offering a teaching-learning experience--we are in this moment together, so let's make the most of it. Frankly, I think the Buddhists have much to teach us about the Noble Truths so, as a beginning, let's pass them along with our mindfulness, experiences and creative activities. {link:}  

3 Dec 2007 @ 18:52 by skillz : The problem with
buddhists like all the other religions is that it is worship of adayity (spellt well wrong) We should learn to have faith in ourselves, this as a teacher would be all that i would teach. Teach others to be great, not teach others to worship the greatness of yourself/your ego. I dont know much about buddhism but i do know that every bubbhist ive met has a little statue of a fat man in their house. Parents should be all the teachers a child needs. How can sending your child away from the security of the family to be TOLD what to do and how to think and speak and act in life by the money driven government (slavery incorporated), be any good. What are parents thinking! Brainwashing has worked so well by the government that they dont even have to force the parents, the parents force the kids and even punish them for not going. People seem to be losing a grip on reality as they get older. Schooling children is not good for anything other than creating government slaves. If there are sum people who in their later life still choose and want to be lead by someone then maybee society should be divided not be wealth but by anarchy. A system that will suit one wont allways suit all. So then many systems should be in play. Its only adults that choose stupid religions to fill their pointless lives. When i was a child i was forced to go to church 3 times a week in the name of the Jehovahs wittness cult. It was my mothers insecurity that lead her to this fanaticy, not my free will. My naturel instint told me that it wasn't right. My mother should have listened. All parents should stop TELLING their children whats right and start LISTENING and LEARNING from their children. They ARE the future, we are the past. Allowing our children to be indoctoctrinated (and there is no good indoctrination) is just continuing this society which without any shadow of a doubt is a huge problem and will continue to eat itself and everything around it until all life ceases.

What i am trying get accross is that people seem to turn back to institutions to solve the problems that THEY created. Where do we go from here WITHOUT involving institutionalized establishment concepts?  

3 Dec 2007 @ 20:44 by jerryvest : I don't like idol worship either and our
children were always free to join a religion or not. My son is a professional actor and has admired and even written and produced a one man show of Thoreau. I think that you would also appreciate this man for what he was and willing to go to jail for his principles.

"What shall we think of a government to which all the truly brave and just men in the land are enemies, standing between it and those whom it oppresses? A government that pretends to be Christian and crucifies a million Christs every day!"
- Henry David Thoreau

I was also forced to go to church every Sunday by my parents and hated it and them for forcing me to go. It's almost like being hit by our parents and then they wonder why we are frightened of them and won't tell them the truth.

Anyway, I appreciate your comments and know that our children and theirs will break these patterns of conditioning that have oppressed many of us for generations.  

4 Dec 2007 @ 02:28 by a-d : Very profound
very humbling to read what you guys have put out on the Table here!...
Steve, typos are just that: typos!... they are NOT the THINKING! You know how to think and feel!

The more I have been thinking of Gandhi's words: "Be the Change you want to see" the more of Mind boggling wisdom do I see in them!
this Hawaiian Healing method called Ho'oponopono is very much about exactly that: IMPROVE OURSELVES and the world (including people) around us will start changing too ...and I have seen this action!...I have already managed to prove it myself!... so... this is today all I do: make decicions that make life nicer, cleaner, healthier, more beautiful, more loving , caring for me and my Kids and lo & behold it does affect my friends as well and we now have a energy vortex going , one of CARING ever more. It is quite incredible!
I came to this site a few minutes ago, because I found this wonderful little saying by an Anonymus, that Vaxen gave NCN long time ago.

The History of Medicine
2000 BC
Here, eat this root.
1000 BC
That root is heathen.
Here, say this prayer.
1805 AD
That prayer is superstition.
Here, drink this potion.
1940 AD
That potion is snake oil.
Here, swallow this pill.
1985 AD
That pill is ineffective.
Here, take this antibiotic.
2000 AD
That antibiotic doesn't work
anymore. Here, eat this root. by Anonymus/ from this link:

about hooponopono

anhooo...I made my own version of this and it has worked fine!... The MAIN thing is that I make conscious decicions that are Life affirming for ALL and I also bless the ones who are maybe not so aligned with life sustaining ways... In other words I'm using this "Let Go & Let God" principle quite a lot -and it works!  

4 Dec 2007 @ 04:24 by a-d : some Drug Related Facts:
The rate of incarceration has more than doubled since the late 1980s. The US now has five times more prisoners per capita than Canada and seven times more than the whole of Western Europe. The US has 5 percent of the world’s population and 25 percent of the world’s prisoners. Nearly 90 percent of prisoners are jailed for nonviolent offenses, often casualties of the so-called drug war. It is a debate among Democrats and Republicans over who can be “tougher” on crime, hire more police, and build more prisons. Almost overnight, the prison-industrial complex has become a big business and a powerful lobby for public funds. (p. 448)

In the year 2000, a Texas man received 16 years in prison for stealing a Snickers candy bar, while four executives at Hoffman-LaRoche were found guilty of conspiring to suppress and eliminate competition in the vitamin industry in what the Justice Department called perhaps the largest criminal antitrust conspiracy in history. The four executives were fined anywhere from $75,000 to $350,000. They received prison terms ranging from three all the way up to four months. (p. 449)

from :
Fred Burks is worth to know about! This is Fred's own site:

I also posted a lot of Fred Burks on Vaxen's blog, just now as the Theme fits perfectly! : )  

4 Dec 2007 @ 05:12 by jerryvest : Yes, "Let go and let God," is an
excellent principle that can be applied in most of our daily thoughts and activites. Seems to me that this principle fits well with mindfulness. I remember many years ago, during one of our self-development groups, we were introduced to the Latihan where we open our minds and surrender to God's Will--or, as one of the Beatle songs goes--"Let it Be." (The "it" in gestalt psychology always means "I" or "Me.")

Thanks, Astrid.  

4 Dec 2007 @ 14:36 by jerryvest : Yes, there are some good articles in
the huffington post this week about the justice system or the fact that there is no justice in America. We've even recently seen how Lewis Libby, one of Bush-Cheney's men, never served a day in jail for committing treason, yet kids are put in jail or mental hospitals for disobeying authority. I'm hopeful that we haven't heard the end of the Valery Plame Wilson disclosure by the Bushites. {link:} But, this is just the tip of the iceberg while discussing crime.

Thanks for pointing out the criminal acts by Hoffman-LaRoche and their 'slap on the hand' for white colar crimes. Obvious to many of us, there is so much corporate greed that it may take years to find enough court time to prosecute the Halibutons, Blackwater, Big Pharmas, oil cartels, etc. and the members of congress who are personally benefiting from this war. You also point out an excellent resource by Fred Burks. He is really a genuine and remarkable human being who offers great understanding about advancing our spiritual development.

Thanks, Astrid....  

4 Dec 2007 @ 14:36 by skillz : Justice
"The justice system" ,what a f#ckin joke! So if a poor hungry man gets 16 years for stealing food, what is the centence for playing god with the world and all life on it, causing poverty, misery , suffering and death of millions and the continuation of doing what is logicaly wrong and suicidal which will eventualy end all life on earth. George Bush and friends, my court room awaits you.

"Be the Change you want to see" What a great line. I'd like to think that i am practicing that myself.

Ive never heard of Mr Thoreau but he speaks sound words. You must be very proud of your son.

Jerry please tell me you are not a "believer" of "God" in the religious form?

I have most enjoyed this thread :)  

4 Dec 2007 @ 14:38 by skillz : By the way
the beatles are one of my favourite bands  

4 Dec 2007 @ 15:23 by jerryvest : Thanks, dkill, you point out the real
killers of our planet and their lack of respect for ",liberty and the pursuit of happiness--"their way or the highway!" Yes, I am extremely proud of my kids. My son and daughter, in their own way, are rebels with a cause. They are loving, kind, respectful and honest human beings. They care about others, nature, themselves and I am so grateful to have them as our best friends.

I don't think that I am a "believer" of God in the sense that I need to defend the Unknown. After all is said about him/her/it/us/nature, belief is only an assumption about reality. I don't have an answer about our creation--How did we arrive here? Are we an accident of nature? These historical questions aren't so much of a concern of mine as I am more interested in how can I become fully human? How can I be guided by my true nature that may well be connected with all that is? How can I sustain an 'open mind?' How can I effectively serve humanity as One Body-Mind-Spirit? What prevents me from being the best I can be? What are my fears and insecurities?

Anyway, I recently wrote a log about these questions that have been part of my developmental experience and continue to return to the big one--What is there to Fear? It seems that God, Sex, Sin, Living and Dieing are the big ones that many of us could personally examine so that we can experience greater freedom and not depend on others and religions to be our source of direction. I learned many years ago that I can raise a question in my meditations and the answers always arrive. I just have to be present in the moment to experience them.  

5 Dec 2007 @ 20:03 by skillz : The meaning of life
I think i may have allready written an artical on this but basicaly we are here because we can be.


We are possible therefore we eventualty enevitabley become. Thats not Einstien or any philosiphers quote, thats me. People often look at creation in a shallow way like the notion that a physical god creature created with his mind and skill the universe and nature. I see it more like god is just the possiblity of everything the design and we are its fruits. Like although babies come from women they dont technicaly know how to make a baby even though 9 months after sex a perfectly formed one pops out of them. The solar system was a result of some serious space sex. Things happen because they have to.

Anyway, thanx for reading my comments.  

6 Dec 2007 @ 14:48 by jerryvest : There are certainly many philosophers
who have discussed these issues and I suspect there will be an "inevitable possibility" that they will continue. Personally, I don't understand many of them aa it often appears to me as a play on words. I took philosophy much too early in life, so am not able to fully appreciate these concepts or be effective or helpful discussing them.

While doing a search on the concept of "inevitable possibility" I did find this quote that may fit with your personal beliefs:

"The Riddle of Epicurus or Epicurean paradox is the earliest known description of the Problem of evil, and is a famous argument against the existence of an all-powerful and providential God or gods. As translated by David Hume in the Dialogues concerning Natural Religion:

If God is willing to prevent evil, but is not able to
Then He is not omnipotent.

If He is able, but not willing
Then He is malevolent.

If He is both able and willing
Then whence cometh evil?

If He is neither able nor willing
Then why call Him God?"

I think that Quinty would be a very good source for discussing these questions about God/god, don't you think?  

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