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Corporate Corruption Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Corporate Corruption Media Articles in Major Media


Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable news media sources. If any link fails to function, a paywall blocks full access, or the article is no longer available, try these digital tools.


Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


EPA accused of failing to regulate use of toxic herbicides despite court order
2023-04-24, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/apr/24/epa-monsanto-toxic-herbic...

The US Environmental Protection Agency has in effect ignored a 2020 federal court order prohibiting the use of Monsanto and other producers' toxic dicamba-based herbicides that are destroying millions of acres of cropland, harming endangered species and increasing cancer risks for farmers, new fillings in the lawsuit charge. Instead of permanently yanking the products from the market after the 2020 order, the EPA only required industry to add further application instructions to the herbicides' labels before reapproving the products. A late 2021 EPA investigation found the same problems persist even with new directions added to the label, but the agency still allows Monsanto, BASF and other producers to continue using dicamba. The EPA's pesticide office is included in allegations that career managers are influenced by or have colluded with industry, and in some cases falsified science to make dangerous substances appear less toxic. About one-third of the pesticide office's funding comes from industry fees. The agency in 2016 approved the dicamba-based herbicide developed by Monsanto, which was to be used on genetically modified soybean and cotton crops. The herbicide can damage or kill neighboring crops and plants that are not engineered to be dicamba-resistant. The results are "devastating" and destroying millions of acres as "as never before seen in the history of US agriculture", the plaintiffs said. In some cases, direct dicamba exposure can kill insects, mammals and other animals.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the food system from reliable major media sources.


As Drug Crisis Mounted, Sacklers Gave Millions to Group That Advises on Opioids
2023-04-23, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/04/23/health/sacklers-opioids-national-academies...

For the past decade, the White House and Congress have relied on the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine, a renowned advisory group, to help shape the federal response to the opioid crisis, whether by convening expert panels or delivering policy recommendations and reports. Yet officials with the National Academies have kept quiet about one thing: their decision to accept roughly $19 million in donations from members of the Sackler family, the owners of Purdue Pharma, the maker of the drug OxyContin that is notorious for fueling the opioid epidemic. The opioid crisis has led to hundreds of thousands of overdose deaths, spawned lawsuits and forced other institutions to publicly distance themselves from Sackler money or to acknowledge potential conflicts of interest from ties to Purdue Pharma. The National Academies has largely avoided such scrutiny as it continues to advise the government on painkillers. Institutions that more publicly examined their use of Sackler donations include Tufts University, which released a review of possible conflicts of interest related to pain research education funded by Purdue Pharma. Concerns noted in the report included a senior Purdue executive's delivering lectures to students each semester. The World Health Organization in 2019 retracted two guidance documents on opioid policy after lawmakers aired concerns about ties to opioid makers, including a Purdue subsidiary, among report authors and funders.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


JPMorgan's Ties to Jeffrey Epstein Were Deeper Than the Bank Has Acknowledged
2023-04-21, Wall Street Journal
https://www.wsj.com/articles/jpmorgan-jeffrey-epstein-525febe3

JPMorgan Chase & Co. had ties to Jeffrey Epstein that ran deeper than the bank has acknowledged and extended years beyond when it decided to close the convicted sex offender's accounts. Mary Erdoes, a top lieutenant to Chief Executive Jamie Dimon, made two trips to Epstein's townhouse on Manhattan's Upper East Side, in 2011 and 2013, when Epstein still was a client of the bank, said the people familiar with the matter. She exchanged dozens of emails with him and discussed sharing with him fees related to a charitable fund the bank was considering launching. John Duffy, who ran JPMorgan's U.S. private bank for the ultrarich, went to Epstein's townhouse for a meeting in April 2013, the people said. One month later, the private bank renewed an authorization allowing Epstein to borrow money against his accounts despite repeated warnings from compliance staffers about his unusual banking practices. Justin Nelson, one of Epstein's bankers at JPMorgan, had about a half-dozen meetings at Epstein's townhouse between 2014 and 2017. He also traveled to Epstein's ranch in New Mexico in 2016. Epstein was convicted of soliciting a minor for prostitution in 2008 and forced to register as a sex offender. The new details show that JPMorgan was treating Epstein like a star client after his first conviction and despite repeated warnings from its own employees. And after JPMorgan closed Epstein's accounts, bankers kept meeting with him for years.

Note: One Nation Under Blackmail is a new book by Whitney Webb, an investigative journalist who explores the deep ties between Jeffrey Epstein and US and Israeli Intelligence criminal networks. Epstein had many concerning associations, including with Noam Chomsky as reported in Webb's most recent article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on banking corruption and Jeffrey Epstein's crime ring from reliable major media sources.


America's Dystopian Incarceration System of Pay to Stay Behind Bars
2023-04-19, Brennan Center for Justice
https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/analysis-opinion/americas-dystopian-in...

There are almost 2 million people locked away in one of the more than 5,000 prisons or jails that dot the American landscape. While they are behind bars, these incarcerated people can be found standing in line at their prison's commissary waiting to buy some extra food or cleaning supplies that are often marked up to prices higher than what one would pay outside of those prison walls. If they want to call a friend or family member, they need to pay for that as well. And almost everyone who works at a job while incarcerated, often for less than a dollar an hour, will find that the prison has taken a portion of their salary to pay for their cost of incarceration. States and local governments spent $82 billion on corrections in 2019. To offset these costs, policymakers have justified legislation authorizing an ever-growing body of fees to be charged to the people (and, as a result, often their families) in prison and jail. Fees for room and board–yes, literally for a thin mattress or even a plastic "boat" bed in a hallway, a toilet that may not flush, and scant, awful tasting food–are typically charged at a "per diem rate for the length of incarceration." It is not uncommon for these fees to reach $20 to $80 a day for the entire period of incarceration. Those who work regular jobs in prisons such as maintaining the grounds, working in the kitchen, and painting the walls of the facilities earn on average between $0.14 and $0.63 an hour.

Note: Read about a woman who only served 10 months in bars, yet now owes $127,000 for her original 7-year prison sentence. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Antidepressants increase the risk of suicide for some patients, scientists warn
2023-04-17, The Telegraph (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2023/04/17/antidepressants-suicide-drugs-pro...

Antidepressants raise the risk of suicide while also giving people the means to kill themselves, scientists have warned, after discovering thousands of inquests linked to the drugs. Psychologists at the University of East London (UEL) analysed media reports of nearly 8,000 coroners' inquests in England and Wales between 2003 and 2020, in which antidepressants were mentioned. They found the drugs were linked to 2,718 cases of hanging and 2,329 overdoses, of which 933 people had overdosed on antidepressants themselves. A further 2,083 had been struck by a train, tube, lorry or other vehicle, had jumped or fallen to their death, drowned, shot themselves, or been involved in a fire or electrocution. Study author Dr John Read ... said: "Not only do antidepressants not reduce suicidality, but they also actually increase it for many, and for some they provide the mechanism for killing oneself." The research, ... concluded: "If the goal is to prevent suicide then clearly they are not working for thousands of people." Around one in six of the adult population takes antidepressants each year. In 2018, Prof Read surveyed nearly 1,500 people taking antidepressants and found that 50 per cent reported suicidal thoughts after starting the drugs. Recent studies have also called into question the benefits of antidepressants. Last year, University College London (UCL) concluded that depression is not caused by a chemical imbalance of serotonin and argued that life events were a larger factor.

Note: Antidepressants are some of the most commonly prescribed medications, yet their significant risks are often withheld from public debate. Furthermore, an in-depth investigation reveals the glaring conflicts of interest and financial ties to corporate drugmakers that are behind many studies marketing clinical antidepressants as safe. 


Billionaire Space Flight Isn't About Colonization. It's Stoking a New Cold War.
2023-04-16, Truthout
https://truthout.org/articles/billionaire-space-flight-isnt-about-colonizatio...

The U.S. has not engaged in a defensive war for nearly 80 years, instead destabilizing governments worldwide in Vietnam, the Korean Peninsula, Iraq, Afghanistan, throughout Africa and across Latin America. Although all weapons of mass destruction in space are technically prohibited by the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, it isn't without precedent for major military powers to withdraw from such treaties. In 2019, President Donald Trump diverged from President Barack Obama's promise he would "not weaponize space," and created an official Space Force. Countersurveillance and counter-communications have been central goals of U.S. military space operations since the 1990s, alongside attaining U.S. "full spectrum dominance" of all potential conflict sites – including space. Space infrastructure ... increases the risk of global nuclear war by presenting new opportunities for armament and hostility. The government's ability to militarize this technology is strongly related to investment and development in the private sector through companies such as Boeing, SpaceX and Blue Origin. The commercial arm of the military-industrial complex is extending into space. Along with Blue Origin, SpaceX has collaborated with DOD in developing rapid global military cargo delivery systems, which the DOD hopes will make for global military logistics – delivery of supplies, weapons and even human soldiers anywhere on earth – in under 60 minutes.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Pentagon Tries to Cast Bank Runs as National Security Threat
2023-04-03, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2023/04/03/silicon-valley-bank-bailout-pentagon/

In recent months, the Pentagon has moved to provide loans, guarantees, and other financial instruments to technology companies it considers crucial to national security – a step beyond the grants and contracts it normally employs. So when Silicon Valley Bank threatened to fail in March following a bank run, the defense agency advocated for government intervention to insure the investments. The Pentagon had even scrambled to prepare multiple plans to get cash to affected companies if necessary, reporting by Defense One revealed. Their interest in Silicon Valley Bank stems from the Pentagon's brand-new office, the Office of Strategic Capital. The secretary of defense established the OSC in December specifically to counteract the investment power of adversaries like China in U.S. technologies, and to secure separate funding for companies whose products are considered vital to national security. The national security argument for bailout, notably, found an influential friend in the Senate. As the Biden administration intervened to protect Silicon Valley Bank depositors on March 12, Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., who chairs the powerful Senate Intelligence Committee and also sits on the Banking Committee, issued a press release warning that the bank run posed a national security risk. Warner – the only member of Congress to have publicly tied SVB to national security – has received significant contributions from the financial sector. Since 2012, Warner has received over $21,000 from Silicon Valley Bank's super PAC.

Note: Many tech startups with funds in Silicon Valley Bank were working on projects with defense and national security applications. Explore revealing news articles on the rising concerns of the emerging technologies that the Defense Department is investing in, given their recent request for $17.8 billion to research and develop artificial intelligence, autonomy, directed energy weapons, cybersecurity, 5G technology, and more.


Clearview AI scraped 30 billion images from Facebook and other social media sites and gave them to cops: it puts everyone into a 'perpetual police line-up'
2023-04-02, Business Insider
https://www.businessinsider.com/clearview-scraped-30-billion-images-facebook-...

A controversial facial recognition database, used by police departments across the nation, was built in part with 30 billion photos the company scraped from Facebook and other social media users without their permission. The company, Clearview AI, boasts of its potential for identifying rioters at the January 6 attack on the Capitol, saving children being abused or exploited, and helping exonerate people wrongfully accused of crimes. But critics point to privacy violations and wrongful arrests fueled by faulty identifications made by facial recognition, including cases in Detroit and New Orleans, as cause for concern over the technology. Once a photo has been scraped by Clearview AI, biometric face prints are made and cross-referenced in the database, tying the individuals to their social media profiles and other identifying information forever – and people in the photos have little recourse to try to remove themselves. CNN reported Clearview AI last year claimed the company's clients include "more than 3,100 US agencies, including the FBI and Department of Homeland Security." BBC reported Miami Police acknowledged they use the technology for all kinds of crimes, from shoplifting to murder. The risk of being included in what is functionally a "perpetual police line-up" applies to everyone, including people who think they have nothing to hide, [said] Matthew Guariglia, a senior policy analyst for the international non-profit digital rights group Electronic Frontier Fund.

Note: Read about the rising concerns of the use of Clearview AI technology in Ukraine, with claims to help reunite families, identify Russian operatives, and fight misinformation. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


A Front Company and a Fake Identity: How the U.S. Came to Use Spyware It Was Trying to Kill
2023-04-02, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/04/02/us/politics/nso-contract-us-spy.html

The secret contract was finalized on Nov. 8, 2021, a deal between a company that has acted as a front for the United States government and the American affiliate of a notorious Israeli hacking firm. Under the arrangement, the Israeli firm, NSO Group, gave the U.S. government access to one of its most powerful weapons – a geolocation tool that can covertly track mobile phones around the world without the phone user's knowledge or consent. Only five days earlier, the Biden administration had announced it was taking action against NSO, whose hacking tools for years had been abused by governments around the world to spy on political dissidents, human rights activists and journalists. The White House placed NSO on a Commerce Department blacklist, declaring the company a national security threat. The secret contract ... violates the Biden administration's public policy, and still appears to be active. The contract, reviewed by The Times, stated that the "United States government" would be the ultimate user of the tool, although it is unclear which government agency authorized the deal and might be using the spyware. Elements of America's expansive national security apparatus in recent years have bought the weapons, deployed them against drug traffickers, and have quietly pushed to consolidate control of them into the hands of the United States and its closest allies. The F.B.I. purchased access in 2019 to NSO's most powerful hacking tool, known as Pegasus, which invades mobile phones and mines their contents.

Note: Read how journalists and activists have been targeted with NSO Group spyware. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


US Virgin Islands subpoenas four top businessmen in Epstein banking inquiry
2023-04-01, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/apr/01/us-virgin-islands-subpoenas-e...

A US Virgin Islands investigations into the sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein's ties to an American bank issued subpoenas to four wealthy business leaders on Friday, extending its reach into the highest echelons of tech, hospitality and finance. The subpoenas issued to the Google co-founder Sergey Brin, Hyatt Hotels chairperson Thomas Pritzker, American-Canadian businessman Mortimer Zuckerman and former CAA talent agency chairperson Michael Ovitz are crafted to gather more information about Epstein's relationship with JPMorgan Chase. The Virgin Islands' lawsuit against JP Morgan, the world's largest bank in terms of assets, alleges that the institution "facilitated and concealed wire and cash transactions that raised suspicion of – and were in fact part of – a criminal enterprise whose currency was the sexual servitude of dozens of women and girls in and beyond the Virgin Islands". "Human trafficking was the principal business of the accounts Epstein maintained at JP Morgan," it said. The disgraced financier ... owned two private islands – Little Saint James, or "Epstein Island", and Great Saint James – in the American territory, and authorities there have secured a $105m settlement from his estate. The demand for any communications and documents related to the bank and Epstein from four of the wealthiest people in the US comes days after it was reported that Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan's chairperson and chief executive, is expected to be deposed in the case.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein's child sex trafficking ring from reliable major media sources.


Does Direct-to-Consumer Advertising Directly Harm Patients?
2023-03-29, Time Magazine
https://time.com/6266695/direct-to-consumer-advertising-harm-patients/

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University recently published an article in JAMA that highlights rising concern around the effects of direct-to-consumer advertising (DTC) on health care. Their work shows that DTC advertising might have direct harm on patients. They studied drug characteristics and total advertising expenditures for the 150 top-selling branded prescription drugs in the United States, finding that total promotional spending by the manufacturer was associated with a significantly lower added clinical benefit for the drug. In fact, companies spent nearly 15% more on DTC advertising for drugs that had demonstrated lower added benefit. Even more troubling, each 1.5% increase in spending was associated with a 10% increase in sales. Simply put, pharmaceutical companies spent more money on DTC advertising when medical research found that the drug was less effective, and this spending directly led to more sales for those inferior drugs. The U.S. is one of only two countries in the world that still allows direct-to-consumer advertising. Aside from increased pressure on providers to prescribe particular drugs which may not be the best option, there are other downsides to DTC. The data show that DTC advertising leads to increased drug costs overall, adding to the already skyrocketing costs of medical care in America. Additionally, DTC advertising tends to reduce use of generic medications, which are often equally effective but significantly cheaper for patients.

Note: This profoundly eye-opening interview of a top cardiologist reveals without doubt how big Pharma has corrupted science and greatly damaged public health. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


The links between pollution and miscarriage: ‘This is the stuff nightmares are made of'
2023-03-28, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2023/mar/29/the-links-between-pollution-a...

The world we live in is slowly poisoning every single one of us. And the chemicals doing the most damage are byproducts of the fossil fuel industry, agribusiness and manufacturing. There doesn't seem to be the appetite at a regulatory or governmental level to stop it. In Australia, 50,000 agricultural, industrial and veterinary chemicals are being used; 1,500 are suspected to interfere with endocrine function, which is essential to the healthy working of our reproductive and hormonal systems. Only a very small number have been tested. Microplastics, which can cause inflammation in the body, is being found in our blood streams and also in the placentas of unborn fetuses. Walking down a major intersection during rush hour can expose you to as much particulate matter as a major bushfire event. Even if chemicals are tested, the testing regimen means that chemicals are only being tested in isolation and not in conjunction with others to see how compounds react. Also, they might be tested for carcinogenic effects ... but the test subjects aren't monitored for other ill-effects, such as endocrine disruption. Some effects take place long after the research has concluded. Some of these chemicals can stay in the body forever. Or affect the way our DNA functions. There's even an Australian website (not widely enough publicised) called yourfertility.org.au. It has an entire section on chemicals in our environment and what to avoid, stating that "avoiding these chemicals may increase the chance of having a baby".

Note: The above was written by Isabelle Oderberg, author of Hard to Bear: Investigating the science and silence of miscarriage. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


Big oil on campus: how US universities are ‘colonized' by the fossil-fuel industry
2023-03-27, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/education/2023/mar/27/fossil-fuel-firms-us-univer...

Even as elite American universes such as Harvard have bowed to pressure to divest their multibillion-dollar endowments from fossil fuels, and student activists take recalcitrant holdouts to court, oil and gas companies continue to exert a grip upon campus life, through funded research and the physical presence of oil and gas industry employees in lectures and meetings with faculty. Fossil-fuel firms have purposely sought to "colonize" academia with industry-friendly science, rather than seed overt climate denial, according to Ben Franta, a senior research fellow at the University of Oxford who has studied industry's influence over universities. Their research dollars, he said, had effectively discouraged academic endeavors that challenge the core business model of burning oil and gas, instead shifting the focus to favored topics such as capturing carbon emissions from polluting facilities, a still niche technology that would allow industry to continue business as usual. The reach of fossil fuels into academia "never ceases to amaze me", said Robert Brulle, an environmental sociologist at Brown University. "You can barely study climate change at elite universities and not be funded by fossil-fuel companies," he added. "They drive all this study into carbon capture, so that influences policy and becomes a part of the Biden administration's agenda. The influence is profound, and the students are right to be wondering what kind of education they are getting here."

Note: Read more on how fossil companies donated $700 million to US universities over 10 years. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


How doctors buy their way out of trouble
2023-03-24, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-healthcare-settlements/

Over the last decade alone, at least 540 doctors and healthcare practitioners collectively paid the government hundreds of millions of dollars to negotiate their way out of trouble via civil settlements, then continued to practice medicine without restrictions on their licenses despite allegations that included fraud and patient harm, a Reuters investigation found. That figure is the result of the first-ever comprehensive analysis of federal civil settlements and state disciplinary actions. Separately, more than 2,200 hospitals and healthcare companies likewise negotiated civil deals to sidestep prosecution for alleged offenses that included paying bribes, falsifying patients records and billing the government for unnecessary patient care, the Reuters analysis shows. In many of those cases, the physicians, staffers and top brass who purportedly committed those misdeeds were not named publicly by prosecutors or forced to pay settlements themselves. Federal enforcers said they sometimes withhold names of individuals in these situations because of ongoing or planned investigations. The U.S. government collected more than $26.8 billion in healthcare-related civil settlements and judgments from 2013 to 2022, the Reuters analysis found. Victims, meanwhile, received no share of these settlements, which are funneled to a Treasury Department general fund. Consequently, they must pursue their own civil cases in search of restitution for suffering and harm, Reuters found.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


A is For Abuse: Two Harvard Grads Saw Big Profits in African Education. Children Paid the Price.
2023-03-23, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2023/03/23/bridge-schools-africa-kenya-education/

Bridge International Academies ... grew into a chain of schools providing a homogeneous curriculum developed by researchers in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to hundreds of thousands of students in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Liberia, and India. Today, it is the largest for-profit primary education chain in the world. The company is financed today by some of the highest-profile do-good donors in the game – or rather, the for-profit arms of their networks. In March 2022, the World Bank's financing arm – the International Finance Corporation – quietly divested from NewGlobe, the parent company of Bridge International. A series of abuse and neglect allegations in Kenya ... had caught the eye of a Nairobi-based human rights group, the East African Centre for Human Rights, or EACHRights, as well as the internal watchdog at the World Bank, known as the Compliance Advisor Ombudsman, or CAO. "I find it deeply suspect that CAO uncovers explosive child sexual abuse allegations in the course of a compliance investigation and shortly thereafter, the World Bank president unexpectedly terminates the head of the CAO," said one well-placed civil society representative whose clients have complaints before the CAO. "Meanwhile, three years after the child sexual abuse allegations came to light, the CAO has still not produced an investigation report." It's very sad, because the CAO has always been the kind of beacon of accountability of any kind of institution, public or private. No more.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


20 Years After Illegal US Invasion of Iraq, Its Architects Are Still Cashing In
2023-03-19, Truthout
https://truthout.org/articles/20-years-after-illegal-us-invasion-of-iraq-its-...

It had been 15 years since the U.S. invaded Iraq when, on March 19, 2018, the celebrated Iraqi novelist and poet Sinan Antoon published a blistering op-ed in The New York Times. He took readers through his observations of the steady deterioration of Iraqi society since the war began, but the most scathing words came toward the end. "No one knows for certain how many Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion 15 years ago," Antoon wrote. "Some credible estimates put the number at more than one million. You can read that sentence again. The invasion of Iraq is often spoken of in the United States as a ‘blunder,' or even a ‘colossal mistake.' It was a crime. Those who perpetrated it are still at large." That the invasion was not just a moral catastrophe but an egregious war crime has been echoed by everyone from United Nations heads to human rights leaders. With the 20th anniversary of the invasion now approaching, the sanitizing of the war's major culprits – or, at the very least, the soft forgetting of their crimes – continues. As the very top decision-makers faded into retirement, the next layer of war pushers, enablers and overseers – the top defense and national security officials and the celebrity generals – went on to profit immensely following their leadership of an illegal war, darting through the revolving door to snag coveted corporate board seats and prestigious university appointments. Many of them remain in these positions with defense industry giants, tech firms and Wall Street investors today.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption and war from reliable major media sources.


'I'm not a doctor just FYI': the influencers paid to hawk drugs on TikTok
2023-03-17, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/mar/17/patient-influencers-tiktok-in...

A young TikTok user has long, wavy hair. She's slim and wants you to know exactly why: she's using Wegovy, a prescription drug originally developed to treat diabetes that's become a popular drug for weight loss. In one clip, she picks up the medication from a pharmacy ... then demonstrates in a following clip how she injects it into her leg. She's what's called a patient influencer. They have no medical training and claim that they're simply sharing their personal experiences with their TikTok and Instagram followers. But in this ... unregulated arena, it's gotten harder to tell when influencing crosses legal and ethical lines. Many patient influencers offer prescription drug advice to their followers without always revealing their relationships with drug companies, according to Erin Willis ... who authored a study about patient influencers. A patient influencer can expect to earn anywhere from "the low hundreds to a few thousand dollars" per social media post. Part of what makes patient influencers effective is that they often push messaging further than what would be allowed on media like TV, where ads are far more closely scrutinized by regulators like the FDA and Federal Trade Commission. Willis calls patient influencing "an interactive form of advertising" that's "difficult to regulate, if it's been regulated at all". Studies find [direct-to-consumer] ads lead to doctors prescribing them more – driving the market for these ads to nearly $7bn last year, industry statistics show.

Note: This controversial marketing tactic is only legal in the United States and New Zealand. Read more about how these tactics are quickly becoming the "wild west of pharma advertising," especially when the FDA's social media guidance hasn't been updated since 2014. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


‘Patient influencers' paid by Big Pharma to mislead followers: report
2023-03-17, New York Post
https://nypost.com/2023/03/17/patient-influencers-paid-by-big-pharma-to-misle...

There's no better way to reach an audience today than through social media – and Big Pharma is well aware of that. The video-sharing platform TikTok, for example, is being flooded with videos of users testifying to wellness through prescription drugs, with hashtags like #adhd (22.3B views), #ozempic (675.1M views) and #wegovy (259.3M views) consistently trending. Now, experts are warning about this misleading tactic by drugmakers, in paying popular social media users to espouse their products under the guise of honest reviews, in a new study published this week in the Journal of Medical Internet Research. These so-called patient influencers, or patient "advocates," are social media influencers who use their platform to promote pharmaceutical medications and/or medical devices. Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder analyzed 26 recent interviews with patient influencers, who had been diagnosed with conditions such as lupus, fibromyalgia, Parkinson's disease, asthma, HIV, celiac disease, chronic migraines and perimenopause. The majority (69%) had previously collaborated with a pharmaceutical company in some way. The Federal Trade Commission mandates that influencers must disclose if they have been paid by using hashtags, such as by adding #ad or #sponsored to related posts, while the Food and Drug Administration has rules and regulations regarding what can be said on social posts. Nevertheless, many consumers fail to decipher a sponsored ad from genuine peer-to-peer advice.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical corruption and media manipulation from reliable sources.


Project Fear's ‘psychological warfare' must never be repeated
2023-03-05, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/project-fears-psychological-warfare-mus...

Leaked messages seen by The Telegraph showed that in December 2020, Matt Hancock, the health secretary at the time, suggested that the Government "frighten the pants off everyone" to ensure strict Covid rules were adhered to. Sir Charles Walker, who was a leading member of the Covid Recovery Group of Conservative backbenchers, said that he was distressed by the leaked conversations. "What makes me so angry is the evils and the psychological warfare we deployed against young people and the population, all those behavioural psychologists," he [said]. "And there needs to be a reckoning. We need to understand and fully appreciate the damage that those sorts of campaigns did." Sir Charles lamented Parliament going "missing in action" as most MPs waved through dozens of Covid restrictions with little debate. He said: "Those voices that raised concerns were just othered. We were positioned as being anti-lockdown, Right-wing headbangers. And actually wanting to do the right thing isn't Right-wing. "We did terrible things to youngsters. We did terrible things to a large number of people. We need to make sure we never do those things again." Paul Dolan, a professor of behavioural science at the London School of Economics, blamed a mix of "mission creep" and "expertise creep" for a response dominated by groupthink. "It was wrong in every sense to make younger people scared of a virus that we knew very early on was of very limited risk to them," he [said].

Note: The unethical use of "nudge" tactics to inflate fear among the public prompted 40 psychologists in the UK to write a letter to the Parliament’s Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, saying it was “highly questionable whether a civilised society should knowingly increase the emotional discomfort of its citizens as a means of gaining their compliance." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the coronavirus and media manipulation from reliable sources.


U.S. regulators rejected Elon Musk's bid to test brain chips in humans, citing safety risks
2023-03-02, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/neuralink-musk-fda/

On at least four occasions since 2019, Elon Musk has predicted that his medical device company, Neuralink, would soon start human trials of a revolutionary brain implant to treat intractable conditions such as paralysis and blindness. Yet the company, founded in 2016, didn't seek permission from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) until early 2022 – and the agency rejected the application. Musk has detailed a bold vision for Neuralink: Both disabled and healthy people will pop into neighborhood facilities for speedy surgical insertions of devices with functions ranging from curing obesity, autism, depression or schizophrenia to web-surfing and telepathy. Musk also has said Neuralink would restore full mobility to paralyzed patients. Reuters exclusively reported late last year that the federal government was investigating the company's treatment of its research animals. The probe was launched amid growing employee concern that the company is rushing experiments, causing additional suffering and deaths of pigs, sheep and monkeys. Musk's company ... trails at least one direct rival in the race for FDA approval. Synchron, a competitor making a BCI implant, has won the agency's blessing for human trials. The company first tested its device on four patients in Australia who successfully sent text messages with their minds. Synchron recently raised $75 million, including from funds backed by tech billionaires Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos.

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