Sunday, June 22, 2014
Inside the FDA Mafia
I post this piece now and then to show how personal things can get inside a terminally corrupt government agency.
It’s not all about remote decisions made from a great height.
These decisions can come about through the rank intimidation the Mafia exercises with a member who wants to leave the mob and go straight.
As in: “We know where your wife and kids are.”
This article is based on a Truthout interview of a man who did drug reviews for the FDA. He examined applications to approve new medical drugs for public consumption.
Pharmaceutical companies must have their new drugs certified as safe and effective before they can enter the market, before doctors can prescribe them. The FDA does this certification. Thumbs up or thumbs down. The drug is okay or it isn’t.
Here’s the story:
In a stunning interview with Truthout’s Martha Rosenberg, former FDA drug reviewer, Ronald Kavanagh, exposes the FDA as a relentless criminal mafia protecting its client, Big Pharma, with a host of mob strategies.
Kavanagh: “…widespread racketeering, including witness tampering and witness retaliation.”
“I was threatened with prison.”
“One [FDA] manager threatened my children…I was afraid that I could be killed for talking to Congress and criminal investigators.”
Kavanagh reviewed new drug applications made to the FDA by pharmaceutical companies. He was one of the holdouts at the Agency who insisted that the drugs had to be safe and effective before being released to the public.
But honest appraisal wasn’t part of the FDA culture, and Kavanagh swam against the tide, until he realized his life and the life of his children were on the line.
What was his secret task at the FDA? “Drug reviewers were clearly told not to question drug companies and that our job was to approve drugs.” In other words, rubber stamp them. Say the drugs were safe and effective when they were not.
Kavanagh’s revelations are astonishing. He recalls a meeting where a drug-company representative flat-out stated that his company had paid the FDA for a new-drug approval. Paid for it. As in bribe.
He remarks that the drug pyridostigmine, given to US troops to prevent the later effects of nerve gas, “actually increased the lethality” of certain nerve agents.
Kavanagh recalls being given records of safety data on a drug—and then his bosses told him which sections not to read. Obviously, they knew the drug was dangerous and they knew exactly where, in the reports, that fact would be revealed.
We are not dealing with isolated incidents of cheating and lying. We are not dealing with a few isolated bought-off FDA employees. The situation at the FDA isn’t correctable with a few firings. This is an ongoing criminal enterprise, and any government official, serving in any capacity, who has become aware of it and has not taken action, is an accessory to mass poisoning of the population.
Fourteen years ago, the cat was let out of the bag. Dr. Barbara Starfield, writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association, on July 26, 2000, in a review titled, “Is US health really the best in the world,” exposed the fact that FDA-approved medical drugs kill 106,000 Americans per year.
In interviewing her, I discovered that she had never been approached by any federal agency to help remedy this tragedy. Nor had the federal government taken any steps on its own to stop the dying.
Ronald Kavanagh’s story, exposed in Truthout, never jumped the rails and made it into the mainstream press as the explosive revelation it was.
Too hot to handle. Too many bodies buried. Too many media outlets bought off by pharmaceutical advertising money. Too close to bought-off government officials. Too likely to shake the pillars of the medical cartel. Too real.
It was the kind of story that could actually wake people up from their mind-controlled slumber.
It still is.
Related: Former FDA Reviewer Speaks Out About Intimidation, Retaliation and Marginalizing of Safety