In the last few months I’ve done extensive research on the major drug companies — “Big Pharma” as some people like to call them, in the same vein as “Big Oil” or “Big Banks.”
What I’ve learned has shattered any idea I had that these organizations want to do the right thing at least some of the time. You might think they’re “well meaning but misguided.” Wrong. They’re bad to the bone.
They’re cheating us and killing us, they know it perfectly well, and they’re doing it all the same because tens of billions of profits are at stake.
It’s a big idea to wrap your head around — the idea that our entire medical system is thoroughly corrupt. I’ve known for a long time that the medical establishment was wrong about some major issues such as cancer treatment and most heart treatments. They’re on the wrong track when it comes to these diseases of aging.
And I knew that “drug money” had corrupted the process of developing and approving treatments. Look at a professional medical journal and you’ll see most of the ads are from big drug companies. Those ad revenues keep the journals in business. And many of their “scientific” articles are just reports on drug-company-funded research. These facts are old news to people interested in alternative health.
But it’s one thing to say, “There’s a lot of corruption,” and another thing to say, “The whole thing is corrupt beyond hope of repair.”
I now take the second view. These companies and their products are a deadly threat to your health (and your wealth, too, since their approach to healthcare is bankrupting the country). To be on the safe side, you need to assume that every word they say is a lie including “a” and “the,” and you have to research and fiercely question every single thing a conventional doctor tells you to do. If you’re not willing to do that, then you’re putting your life and health at risk and you’ll get what you get.
If you’re wondering where your trusted local physician fits into all this, I have more to say about that in a minute. First I want to give you just a few of the facts that convinced me the system is corrupt beyond repair.
That “little purple pill”. . .
Maybe you remember how a major drug company saturated TV with ads touting the “little purple pill.” The new drug treated a disease most of us had never heard of — “acid reflux disease.” People used to call it heartburn but now it has a fancy name and even its own acronym, GERD, for gastro-esophageal reflux disease. “Gastro” refers to the stomach and “esophageal” refers to the esophagus — the tube from your throat down to your stomach.
GERD is caused by stomach acid backing up your esophagus, sometimes all the way to your mouth where you can taste it. The stuff in your stomach literally goes in the wrong direction — back up to your mouth.
Among other things, the ads claimed GERD can lead to cancer of the esophagus. In any case GERD leads to pain and discomfort, and the drug company offered this great new breakthrough — the little purple pill — to deal with the problem.
Well, now. It turns out there was already a “purple pill” on the market, and it was one of the best-selling drugs in the world. But the older drug was about to lose its patent and the drug-maker was desperate. Soon anyone would be able to make a generic version.
So the drug-maker created a new drug that’s a mirror image of the old one. If you hold a molecule of the new drug up to the mirror it’s identical to a molecule of the old drug.
The government accepted this as a “new drug” and granted a patent. Leaving nothing to chance, the drug-maker put a higher dose of the new drug into each pill, then tested it against the old drug. The human trials showed the new drug was more effective. Of course: the dose was higher.
Then came the saturation advertising campaign so that virtually everyone in the country now knows what the little purple pill is. And thousands of people with bad digestion showed up at their doctor’s office and asked for it. Instead of telling patients the old drug is just as good, doctors prescribed the new drug.
The little purple pill was a huge success. It’s a marketing legend in the drug business. Unfortunately, it’s nine or ten times as costly as the old drug that’s exactly the same thing. No wonder the country is going broke.
It happens all the time
This story isn’t unusual. It’s standard operating procedure in the drug business. Clarinex, a prescription allergy drug, is just a metabolite of Claritin, a drug that went off patent years ago. Twenty minutes after you take Claritin, your digestive system has turned it into Clarinex.
It was a rerun of the purple pill scam. When Claritin was going off-patent, the company came out with Clarinex. The over-the-counter version sells for around 60 cents a pill while the newer prescription drug sells for more than $4 a pill.
Marcia Angell, MD, is a former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine and lectures at Harvard Medical School. She “went straight” and is now the nation’s leading whistleblower on the kind of drug company shenanigans I just described.
According to Dr. Angell, most “new” drugs are just “me-too” drugs at high prices. Out of 487 “new” drugs approved during a recent five-year period, more than two-thirds were old drugs with a new name and a high price. Only 32% contained a new active ingredient. And fewer than half of those new ingredients were any better than older ingredients, according to the FDA itself.
Coming in the next issue: There’s a lot more to this story. You’ll see why ALL new drugs are inherently unsafe. And many drugs — new and old alike — are no better than a placebo when it comes to treating whatever it is they’re supposed to treat.