FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

HRT, Zyprexa , Lilly and the Death of Jack

by FRED GARDNER

Even though it made some front pages, the HRT KILLS story has been downplayed tremendously. Many more American civilians have been killed by Big Pharma’s conspiracy to peddle HRT drugs than by the attack on the World Trade Center. In the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, the media ran moving obituaries of the victims (never before or since have restaurant workers been shown such respect) and sought to explain, accurately or otherwise, the decision-making structure of Al Qaeda.

“BREAST CANCER RATE PLUMMETS” could have run in 80-point type above the banner, accompanied by an explanation of the findings, profiles of women who contracted breast cancer or suffered blood clots after taking estrogen and progestin pills, and an expose of the vast conspiracy to sell these drugs to treat “symptoms of menopause” (as if menopause was a disease).

The corporados know how to fan the flames of discontent and they know how to damp them down. HRT KILLS got a two-day follow-up in which apologists for the drug companies and the medical establishment tried to minimize the significance of the report by epidemiologists at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston showing that in 2003, as millions of middle-aged women stopped taking their HRT drugs, the incidence of estrogen-positive breast cancers (the most common type) dropped by 15%.

The New York Times ran this summary of the corporate line from Robert C. Wallach, MD, a professor of gynecology at the NYU Clinical Cancer Center:

“The decreased incidence of breast cancer may reflect better technology and increased discovery in prior years, lessening the number of cancers found later. Lowered incidence might reflect less screening. The study showing that hormones cause breast cancer, heart attacks, strokes and blood clots may be applicable only to the participants who were much older than the usual candidates for hormone use.

Breast cancer in hormone users has been reported to be less aggressive, possibly reflecting earlier discovery due to increase in size without increase in spread. The relation between hormones and breast cancer is more complex than you appreciate.”

Apparently the smattering of Latin Dr. Wallach learned in med school did not include the phrase “mea culpa.”

The conspiracy to sell HRT was vast, as befits one of the drug industry’sall-time blockbusters, and we can’t expect the corporate media to help bring its perpetrators to justice because the corporate media was part of the conspiracy. Here’s one small, finite example of the insidious campaign, from a column by Joan Ryan of Hearst’s San Francisco Examiner called “Lady Golfers Take A Swing At An Old Taboo.” (It stuck it my craw because my father was the Ladies Professional Golf Association publicist in the Patty Berg-Louise Suggs era.) Ryan praised Eli Lilly, which was then pushing the HRT drug Evista, for sponsoring booths at LPGA tournaments where “women stop in to ask, quietly, about hot flashes, bloating, night sweats, mood swings, insomnia, hormone replacement therapy.” Ryan quoted Betsy King, a 42-year-old golfer who won the Lilly Legend series in ’97: “This has been a great learning experience for me. I didn’t pay any attention to the issues the way I should have.”

My wife commented, “Why should a 42-year-old woman be thinking about menopause? Hormone replacement therapy -that’s what’s really dangerous about menopause. Women used to stop having their periods and that was that. What’s different nowadays? If the symptoms are so much more severe, they ought to look for the causes. Couldn’t be all the pesticides we’ve been exposed to, could it?”

The executives of Eli Lilly go right on deploying their sales force, knowingly, to get doctors to prescribe drugs that disable and kill us. Last week Lilly was exposed orchestrating a sales push for Zyprexa as a treatment for dementia. Approved by the FDA as an anti-psychotic, Zyprexa causes enormous, unhealthy weight gain leading to diabetes, among other adverse effects. It brings in $4.2 billion for Lilly, whose execs were not only aware of the dangers in 1999, they created a task force to conceal and downplay them! At least 24 Lilly managers were informed of the existence of the duplicitous Zyprexa task force.

The Zyprexa story ran on the front pages within days of HRT KILLS but not presented as part of the same broader story, i.e., “The War on Us”. The brief expose has an inoculating effect, like a minuscule dose of a pathogen administered so that the patient builds up antibodies and won’t succumb when exposed to lareer doses in the future. The longterm effect of muckraking can be protective for those exposed, creating an impression that the problem is now being solved. It takes SUSTAINED, purposeful coverage – the kind the corporate press has given the World Trade Center attack all these years- to generate public outrage and a political response. The Zyprexa story will now be shunted to the courts, where there are always two sides.

FRED GARDNER is a former Public Information Officer for the District Attorney of San Francisco. He can be reached at fred@plebesite.com

 

Fred Gardner is the managing editor of O’Shaughnessy’s. He can be reached at fred@plebesite.com

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
July 29, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Michael Hudson
Obama Said Hillary will Continue His Legacy and Indeed She Will!
Jeffrey St. Clair
She Stoops to Conquer: Notes From the Democratic Convention
Rob Urie
Long Live the Queen of Chaos
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
Evolution of Capitalism, Escalation of Imperialism
Margot Kidder
My Fellow Americans: We Are Fools
Phillip Kim et al.
Open Letter to Bernie Sanders from Former Campaign Staffers
Ralph Nader
Hillary’s Convention Con
Lewis Evans
Executing Children Won’t Save the Tiger or the Rhino
Vijay Prashad
The Iraq War: a Story of Deceit
Chris Odinet
It Wasn’t Just the Baton Rouge Police Who Killed Alton Sterling
Brian Cloughley
Could Trump be Good for Peace?
Patrick Timmons
Racism, Freedom of Expression and the Prohibition of Guns at Universities in Texas
Gary Leupp
The Coming Crisis in U.S.-Turkey Relations
Pepe Escobar
Is War Inevitable in the South China Sea?
Norman Pollack
Clinton Incorruptible: An Ideological Contrivance
Robert Fantina
The Time for Third Parties is Now!
Andre Vltchek
Like Trump, Hitler Also Liked His “Small People”
Serge Halimi
Provoking Russia
David Rovics
The Republicans and Democrats Have Now Switched Places
Andrew Stewart
Countering The Nader Baiter Mythology
Rev. William Alberts
“Law and Order:” Code words for White Lives Matter Most
Ron Jacobs
Something Besides Politics for Summer’s End
David Swanson
It’s Not the Economy, Stupid
Erwan Castel
A Faith that Lifts Barricades: The Ukraine Government Bows and the Ultra-Nationalists are Furious
Steve Horn
Did Industry Ties Lead Democratic Party Platform Committee to Nix Fracking Ban?
Robert Fisk
How to Understand the Beheading of a French Priest
Colin Todhunter
Sugar-Coated Lies: How The Food Lobby Destroys Health In The EU
Franklin Lamb
“Don’t Cry For Us Syria … The Truth is We Shall Never Leave You!”
Caoimhghin Ó Croidheáin
The Artistic Representation of War and Peace, Politics and the Global Crisis
Frederick B. Hudson
Well Fed, Bill?
Harvey Wasserman
NY Times Pushes Nukes While Claiming Renewables Fail to Fight Climate Change
Elliot Sperber
Pseudo-Democracy, Reparations, and Actual Democracy
Uri Avnery
The Orange Man: Trump and the Middle East
Marjorie Cohn
The Content of Trump’s Character
Missy Comley Beattie
Pick Your Poison
Kathleen Wallace
Feel the About Turn
Joseph Grosso
Serving The Grid: Urban Planning in New York
John Repp
Real Cooperation with Nations Is the Best Survival Tactic
Binoy Kampmark
The Scourge of Youth Detention: The Northern Territory, Torture, and Australia’s Detention Disease
Kim Nicolini
Rain the Color Blue with a Little Red In It
Cesar Chelala
Gang Violence Rages Across Central America
Tom H. Hastings
Africa/America
Robert Koehler
Slavery, War and Presidential Politics
Charles R. Larson
Review: B. George’s “The Death of Rex Ndongo”
July 28, 2016
Paul Street
Politician Speak at the DNC
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail