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Posts Tagged ‘Regulators’

Regulatory Capture in the Age of COVID-19 – Liam’s Blog

Posted by M. C. on September 1, 2021

By Liam Cosgrove (

Our healthcare system is broken, a fact nobody would have disputed in pre-COVID days. Regulatory capture is a reality, and the pharmaceutical industry is fraught with examples. Yet we trusted private-public partnerships to find an optimal solution to a global pandemic, assuming a crisis would bring out the best in historically corrupt institutions.

Here is a brief list of less-than-savory behavior demonstrated by our titans of healthcare: 

  • Pfizer and J&J plead guilty to “misbranding with the intent to defraud or mislead” and paying “kickbacks to health care providers to induce them to prescribe [their] drugs”, resulting in fines of $2.3 billion in 2009 and $2.2 billion in 2013, respectively. 
  • Pfizer settled another lawsuit for “manipulating studies” and “suppressing negative findings” just a few years later. 
  • Moderna has never developed an approved drug yet one of their board members was placed in charge of Operation Warp Speed. This certainly is unrelated to the fact that they received the most federal vaccine R&D funding and have received over $6 billion from our government since the start of the pandemic.
  • Gilead Sciences paid $97 million in fines because it “illegally used a non-profit foundation as a conduit to pay the Medicare co-pays for its own drug”.
  • In 2005, AstraZeneca’s drug Crestor was shown to be linked to a life-threatening muscle disease while the company withheld evidence of this and two dozen other effects from the public.
  • In 2012, GlaxoSmithKline paid $3 billion in fines as it “failed to include certain safety data” relating to their drug, since labeled to be connected to heart failure and attacks.

Thankfully our public health guardians are in place to protect us from the greed and deceit of the private sector, right? Wrong. Enjoy another brief list:

  • FDA worked behind the scenes with company Biogen to alter previously conducted trials of their $56,000 per year Alzheimer’s treatment, and “by removing the subset of people for whom the drug didn’t work, they found a slight statistical effect in favor of the drug.” Even after doing this, an advisory committee voted 10-0 against approving the drug. The FDA approved the drug anyways, causing three committee members to resign.
  • In that case, the third-party advisors did the right thing. This is not always the case… A study by Science Magazinetracking 107 FDA advisors for four years, found that 62% received money from related drug makers with 25% receiving over $100k and 6% receiving over $1 million. It only takes a few corrupt advisors to fix a panel and feign medical consensus.
  • The WHO has come to be dominated by China over the last 17 years by bribing poor nations and altering the organization’s voting structure to ensure their candidates obtain high positions (most notablydirector-general). The WHO parroted false claims made by the CCP in Jan 2020 that COVID-19 had “no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission” (still on Twitter!), despite receiving contrary evidence from Taiwanese health monitors in December 2019 and during which time Chinese hospitals were overrun, requiring mass disinfections across villages:

See the rest here

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Don’t Thank Government Officials for Progress in Sanitation and Life Expectancy

Posted by M. C. on December 10, 2019

Lastly, I have to point out another false narrative so common in articles like this one at The Guardian. Hickel states that “factory owners refused to allow officials to build sanitation systems … ” But state “officials” by themselves wouldn’t have the slightest clue about how to construct a city’s or a nation’s sanitation system. It was the private sector that had driven forward so much progress in new construction practices, new construction materials, and efficient engineering. The idea that government officials themselves created the ingredients of a modern, clean city is not to be believed.

When you run across an article with a title such as this, it simply begs to be read: “It’s not thanks to capitalism that we’re living longer, but progressive politics.”

That’s from The Guardian last week, and the article assures the reader that the science behind today’s relatively high level of safety and cleanliness didn’t come from the wealth produced through the marketplace in recent centuries. No, it turns out government institutions are responsible for it all. Author Jason Hickel writes:

It wasn’t until the 1880s that urban life expectancies finally began to rise — at least in Europe. But what drove these sudden gains? Szreter finds it was down to a simple intervention: sanitation.

Public health activists had discovered that health outcomes could be improved by separating sewage from drinking water. And yet progress toward this goal was opposed, not enabled, by the capitalist class…factory owners refused to allow officials to build sanitation systems on their properties, and refused to pay the taxes required to get the work done.

It’s common to see statements like this smuggled into articles. The idea is plain to see. Property owners and those involved in “capitalism” don’t care about the public at all, and any advances in the well-being of others, in this case, “sanitation,” only come about through the tireless work of heroic “public health activists.” In fact, even when the work of these brave activists is revealed, the greedy property owners do everything they can to stand in the way of progress. It’s a tired narrative, really.

There’s so much wrong with relatively short statements like this that it’s tough to focus on a single topic for rebuttal. But can we simply assume government bureaucrats and regulators are the good guys here? In fact, for the specific type of knowledge here — sanitation — the medical establishment and state-funded institutions have often actively stood in the way and prevented the dissemination of new information and practices. And, this could very easily explain, in part, why property owners refused to surrender their private-property rights and pay more taxes to “get the work done.”

One such example is the case of Ignaz Semmelweis, a physician and amateur scientist in Vienna in the mid-1800s. Dr. Semmelweis was determined, through his own experimenting, to understand why the maternal mortality rate was about 10 percent in his obstetrics clinic at the state hospital in Vienna. That’s right, about one in ten mothers would not survive giving birth in these “free” institutions. What troubled Dr. Semmelweis was that another clinic in the hospital had a maternal mortality rate of about 4 percent. Why were the outcomes so different?

Dr. Semmelweis set about to document the differences in practice between the two clinics in order to understand and improve conditions in the first clinic with the higher mortality rate — and ultimately, to reduce mortalities in both.

It was common practice at the time for physicians to perform both autopsies and deliver babies, without handwashing or sanitary practices being performed in between. After ruling out several other factors, Dr. Semmelweis concluded that the physicians must be carrying “cadaverous particles” from the autopsy room to the patients. The first clinic (the “free” one), with the higher mortality rate, was the teaching clinic, and therefore, many autopsies were performed there.

Dr. Semmelweis instituted a handwashing procedure that used a chlorine-based solution, and the results were astounding. The mortality rate, which was 18 percent at that specific time, fell to 2.2 percent the next month. Within two months of the new protocol, and likely improved adherence to the new practices, the mortality rate was 0 percent.

Shockingly for us, with the benefit of hindsight, these insights were rejected by the medical establishment throughout Europe. Because he contradicted the medical dogma of the time, and also apparently because medical personnel refused to see themselves as unclean, Dr. Semmelweis was dismissed from his position at the hospital.

It’s also of interest to note that there was a prevailing view that these maternal mortalities were “inevitable,” and that some women even preferred to give birth on the street, rather than in the clinic. Apparently, if they were on the way to the “free” clinic, but gave birth before getting there, they still qualified for child care benefits. You can get the sense from all of this that many saw “free” healthcare as not so great after all.

So was it governments that created the systems of sanitation we now benefit from? It hardly seems one can place credit at the feet of bureaucrats and regulators. It was not at all clear, in the 1880s, that sanitation systems of any kind were necessary because the medical establishment often opposed the idea. Indeed, the germ theory of disease was introduced by Louis Pasteur, and was expanded by Robert Koch only by the 1880s. Perhaps listening to research by Ignaz Semmelweis, spread around thirty years earlier, would have sped this process along and saved countless lives. But thanks to medical “experts” — a great many of them employed by governments — this knowledge was impeded for decades.

Lastly, I have to point out another false narrative so common in articles like this one at The Guardian. Hickel states that “factory owners refused to allow officials to build sanitation systems … ” But state “officials” by themselves wouldn’t have the slightest clue about how to construct a city’s or a nation’s sanitation system. It was the private sector that had driven forward so much progress in new construction practices, new construction materials, and efficient engineering. The idea that government officials themselves created the ingredients of a modern, clean city is not to be believed.

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FBI Uncovers Secret Gangs of Tattooed Los Angeles Deputies

Posted by M. C. on July 12, 2019

Wouldn’t be surprised if the CIA wasn’t involved somewhere.

Why? Illegal drugs supporting black ops.

You are what you eat.

by Nate Church

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has launched a probe into multiple gangs hidden within the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

The Banditos, Spartans, Regulators, and Reapers are literal gangs that exist within the roughly 10,000 members of the Los Angeles law enforcement agency. The investigation was triggered by allegations of abuse by the Banditos in March.

Each member of the Banditos is tattooed with a skeleton wearing a sombrero, bandolier, and pistol. Allegations against them include using gang tactics to recruit young Latino deputies, and punishing those who reject their advances.

An unidentified source told the Los Angeles Times that FBI agents “have been trying to determine whether leaders of the Banditos require or encourage aspiring members to commit criminal acts, such as planting evidence or writing false incident reports, to secure membership in the group.”

Deputies David Silverio, Gregory Rodriguez and Rafael Munoz, and Sergeant Mike Hernandez were put on paid leave following the aforementioned allegations, but Sheriff Alex Villanueva has repeatedly minimized the danger. He labeled the gangs a mere “cultural norm,” and believes the problem has already been solved by past investigations.

This is far from the first time violent corruption has spilled out of the cracks in the department. Accusations over the last decade alone have included covering up police brutality, even breaking the bones of suspects in their custody in order to “earn their ink.” Villanueva has chalked that fault up to previous leadership, saying the gangs “ran roughshod” over past sheriffs…

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