Monday, December 14, 2009

More Pig/Bird Flu Fraud

Over Thanksgiving I visited my 96 year old grandfather at his house. He's still very much functional - bowling every week and whatnot. And I still can't beat him at chess!

But he was a little under the weather this time. Supposedly, you guessed it, *pig flu*. Though this hardy man has survived the Nazis, Camel cigarettes, mega-tons of bacon and eggs, raising four daughters(!), and skin cancer (4 years now) was a hysterical triumph of propaganda that he could be under siege by this mythomanic illness.

And there I saw it on his counter, Tamiflu. I've read about about the drug aplenty, starting back with the *bird flu* hoax several years ago.

Tamiflu anti-viral drug revealed as complete hoax; Roche studies based on scientific fraud

(NaturalNews) When it comes to selling chemicals that claim to treat H1N1 swine flu, the pharmaceutical industry's options are limited to two: Vaccines and anti-virals. The most popular anti-viral, by far, is Tamiflu, a drug that's actually derived from a Traditional Chinese Medicine herb called star anise.

But Tamiflu is no herb. It's a potentially fatal concentration of isolated chemical components that have essentially been bio-pirated from Chinese medicine. And when you isolate and concentrate specific chemicals in these herbs, you lose the value (and safety) of full-spectrum herbal medicine.

That didn't stop Tamiflu's maker, Roche, from trying to find a multi-billion-dollar market for its drug. In order to tap into that market, however, Roche needed to drum up some evidence that Tamiflu was both safe and effective.

Roche engages in science fraud

Roche claims there are ten studies providing Tamiflu is both safe and effective. According to the company, Tamiflu has all sorts of benefits, including a 61% reduction in hospital admissions by people who catch the flu and then get put on Tamiflu.

The problem with these claims is that they aren't true. They were simply invented by Roche.

A groundbreaking article recently published in the British Medical Journal accuses Roche of misleading governments and physicians over the benefits of Tamiflu. Out of the ten studies cited by Roche, it turns out, only two were ever published in science journals. And where is the original data from those two studies? Lost.

The data has disappeared. Files were discarded. The researcher of one study says he never even saw the data. Roche took care of all that, he explains.

So the Cochrane Collaboration, tasked with reviewing the data behind Tamiflu, decided to investigate. After repeated requests to Roche for the original study data, they remained stonewalled. The only complete data set they received was from an unpublished study of 1,447 adults which showed that Tamiflu was no better than placebo. Data from the studies that claimed Tamiflu was effective was apparently lost forever.

As The Atlantic reports, that's when former employees of Adis International (essentially a Big Pharma P.R. company) shocked the medical world by announcing they had been hired to ghost-write the studies for Roche.

It gets even better: These researchers were told what to write by Roche!

As one of these ghostwriters told the British Medical Journal:

"The Tamiflu accounts had a list of key messages that you had to get in. It was run by the [Roche] marketing department and you were answerable to them. In the introduction ...I had to say what a big problem influenza is. I'd also have to come to the conclusion that Tamiflu was the answer."

In other words, the Roche marketing department ran the science and told researchers what conclusions to draw from the clinical trials. Researchers hired to conduct the science were controlled by the marketing puppeteers. No matter what they found in the science, they had already been directed to reach to conclusion that "Tamiflu was the answer."

Now, I don't know about you, but where I come from, we call this "science fraud."

Even further, an FDA spokesperson told the British Medical Journal, "The clinical trials... failed to demonstrate any significant difference in rates of hospitalization, complications, or mortality in patients receiving either Tamiflu or placebo."

It's the same message over and over again, like a broken record: Tamiflu doesn't work. And the "science" that says Tamiflu does work was all apparently fabricated from the start.

The Tamiflu stockpiling scandal

Junk science, though, is good enough for the U.S. government. Based on little more than fabricated evidence and Big Pharma propaganda, the U.S. government has spent $1.5 billion stockpiling Tamiflu. This turned out to be a great deal for Roche, but a poor investment for U.S. citizens who ended up spending huge dollars for a medicine that doesn't work.

The upshot of all this is that governments around the world are flushing billions of dollars down the drain stockpiling a drug that doesn't work -- a drug promoted via propaganda and scientific fraud.

Color me shocked!!!

So, the cure for swine/bird flu - diseases as lethal as grade school *cooties* - was a scam???

In their defense, it is pretty hard to treat essentially imaginary illnesses...

I could go pretty far on this subject of Big Government, alarmism, medical entitlements, the bane of state-sanctioned medical research....but I won't, not here.

I'm just going to end this post with a quote from Hayek's The Road To Serfdom:

Once science has to serve, not truth, but the interests of a class, a community, or a state, the sole task of argument and discussion is to vindicate and to spread still further the beliefs by which the whole of the community is directed. As the Nazi minister of justice has explained, the question which every new scientific theory must ask itself is: "Do I serve National Socialism for the greatest benefit of all?"

A few weeks later now, I think my grandfather is doing fine. Must of been that Tamiflu!

Probably, the key to longevity like his in this world is....a natural immunity to quackccines!

See also:

More Pig Flu Nonsense

Swine Flu Cooties

Pig Flu Quack-ccine

Nonstop Alarmism


Anonymous said...

The Road to Serfdom should be required reading for every citizen, not to mention every elected official.
Thank you for giving it space on the blog.

Taylor Conant said...


Love to see the Hayekian side of you! That being said, Anon, you miss the point of Hayek's writing if your desire is to see people COMPELLED to read his book. (rolls eyes)

Mark said...

Surprisingly as your medical consultant, I'm going to actually mostly agree with your Tamiflu rantings.
This was touted as a cure all in the popular press and that drove me crazy
I remember a Time magazine article when the first outbreaks in Mexico began and they stated something to the effect of... (name) was saved by quick administration of Tamiflu... paraphrasing but you get the point
I've spent much of the last couple months trying to talk people out of the use of this medicine who are hysterical and think I'm withholding a cure for them
It has some VERY limited use... in those with known lung, liver, kidney disease... the very old and very young who are immunocompromised...those that are sick with flu (99% aren't "sick")
Roche's studies showed that it could improve symptoms by 1/2 a day and maybe decrease the intensity (hard to measure)
Their claims of 60+% hospitalization avoidance and others and specious
Here's the dilemma for the doc. A lot of people don't like being being talked out of medicine, particularly one that has been outrageously talked up by the media... they can get nasty at times (really... do I want to get sued over not giving a "saving medicine"?)
Some docs just acquiesce... it's the easier path and both parties are happy (med for patient; doc doesn't have to get drawn into an overly long discussion with a disbelieving patient)... it's not right by any means and I strenuously try to avoid it but it happens
And here's a hypothetical.. some people with "regular flu" get sick... complicating pneumonia for example
I talked a patient who was not ill out of tamiflu only to have them become deathly ill with a secondary pneumonia. Could Tamiflu have brought down the severity of the flu enough to prevent the bacterial from gaining a foothold in his damaged lungs? Probably not.. but who knows?? If i get sued over this (quite possible), will the jury side with me and my objective read of his milder illness or will they see a partnerless crying widow who needs to try to find a job to support herself now? Think theatrical lawyering here and tell me..
one case where someone has been sued for giving Tamiflu inappropriately...
What needs to be done...

sorry kinda went a bit off topic there but it's late..

CaptiousNut said...


Just out of curiosity, did you vote for a Presidential candidate with class action patron saint John Edwards on the ticket?

Never mind.

It's hard to imagine showing a jury all the documented evidence in that link I posted (and his sources)....and not being able to convince them that the medicine was pure snake oil. Though yes, I've seen some of these juries.

Yesterday, after having a wisdom tooth extracted, the doc reflexively wrote a script for a whopping 18 percocets!

But then he strongly convinced me not to fill it - that I wouldn't need it.

I guess from a legal standpoint, you have to do something to that effect just to cover yourself.

The final referenced atop this comment. Dethrone the lawyers; make people sign a waiver for most medical treatment. Dumbness and naivete cannot be treated by cartel doctors (or any others for that matter).

In somewhat defense of the Morons who demand drugs when none are needed...

Medicine is so expensive, the *there's got to be something* mentality rides high.

CaptiousNut said...


I highly recommend that you read Hayek.

Anonymous said...

While I don't believe in the swine flu hype, I think this Tamiflu article is spurious.

In order for Tamiflu to be sold, it must be approved by the FDA. The FDA reviews clinical data on the safety and efficacy of this drug for its claimed indications. If a drug is not safe and effective, it will not be approved by the FDA for sale. The data on which the FDA made this decision (while probably not ever presented in a peer reviewed journal) is available for public scrutiny. The website below for provides this data in a series of pdf files.

Indeed the data has not disappeared.

The fact that Roche used a ghost writer is not a shock. Many companies use them. If the claim that the ghost writers compromised their integrity and wrote what Roche instructed is true then that is sad.

Anonymous said...

800,000 Doses of Children's H1N1 Vaccine Recalled

Funny Circus Bears said...

So Salma Hayek is an author AND has a great rack.

Hoo ka tell?