wallsofsilence.com

Childhood trauma and its consequences
It is currently Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:11 pm

All times are UTC + 1 hour [ DST ]




Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 12 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:05 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 2:06 am
Posts: 486
Location: Sweden
Jeremy Laurance: The vested interests that conspire to bury bad news

Tuesday, 26 February 2008

"Publication bias" is not a phrase widely familiar to people outside the world of academic research. Yet it can explain how a drug launched as a safe and effective treatment can later turn out to be useless, or even deadly.

Pharmaceutical companies invest millions of pounds in drug research and have a powerful commercial interest in publishing positive findings for the medicines they have spent years developing. But they are equally keen to keep quiet about those trials which show no effect.

Medical journals comply in this process of self-censorship because, like the lay media, they are competing for readers and positive results – the more dramatic the better – attract more attention. The result is that over months and years, an impression is created that a drug is more effective, and has fewer side-effects, than is really the case.

This is known as "publication bias", the selection of only positive studies for publication. If all the studies conducted, positive and negative, were reviewed the overall impression might be very different. Publication bias has been blamed for the debacle over the powerful painkiller Vioxx, dramatically withdrawn from the market in 2004, after it was suspected of causing heart attacks. The fatal side-effect had not been picked up despite years of research in thousands of patients. Now it is being blamed for the revelation that two decades after their launch, the new-generation anti-depressants, including Prozac and Seroxat, may be no better than placebos.

Data obtained from the Food and Drug Administration in the United States under freedom of information legislation showed that when all the trials, published and unpublished, submitted at the time the drugs were licensed were analysed, it showed no clinically significant effect. The finding makes the review of the present Nice guidelines on the treatment of depression "all the more urgent", according to Tim Kendall, the head of group responsible for drawing them up.

The present guidelines, issued in 2004, recommend psychological treatments be offered as an alternative to drugs, especially in mild depression, a change from the original guidelines which recommended drugs as the first line of treatment. Revised guidelines are due at the end of the year.

Dr Kendall, a consultant psychiatrist in Sheffield, said: "The doubt the study raises is how much confidence we can have in our current data set, which is much bigger [than in the study] but may not be complete. The drug industry says they are being much more open but I am not convinced we are seeing the data we should see, and we are certainly not seeing what the licensing authorities are seeing."

source: www.independent.co.uk


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 10:17 am 
Offline

Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2008 4:27 pm
Posts: 5
This is a very well written article and I enjoyed it very much and agree with it. The drug companies are so corrupt and greedy. I dont understand why people are so indifferent to what is going on. I talk to people about this kind of thing and they just shrug and say Im too busy with my own life to get upset about it and there is nothing I can do anyway. Does anyone know of a way to fight this sort of thing? Any real change that has come about has started with the people protesting Sandy


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 11:56 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 2:06 am
Posts: 486
Location: Sweden
Like you, I'm also familiar with the phrase 'Im too busy with my own life to get upset about it and there is nothing I can do anyway'. Ironically, this IS about their lives but it also illustrates where people put their priorities. People get steamed up about all kinds of irrelevant events, such as a football match or the economy of their country, but remain apathetic about the real events that effect themselves or their children/ loved ones.

I do believe that people should take care of their own lives the best way they can do but also commit to social change. I mean, even 10 minutes a day would do miracles. I think it's important to organize like-minded people here, to make a stronger case, but it'll take time. And it looks like this planet is running out of time and we have to take it up a notch.

Dennis

_________________
Everything I write here is my opinion, not absolute truths but I don't want to start every sentence with in my opinion...


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 5:26 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
Last week Christopher Lane, the author of a book lambasting and exposing the process (out since September), was interviewed on a major Public Broadcasting Chicago current events/news program.
http://yalepress.yale.edu/book.asp?isbn=9780300124460

And three days before the book was published:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/21/college/coll21lane.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

The Yale reviewer considered his use of "dry wit" to be significant. My brain's gone into a knot thinking about that, otherwise I'd comment.

Steve


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:04 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 2:06 am
Posts: 486
Location: Sweden
You might start to wonder how far we have let things go out of control for so long and if there ever will be an end to the rise of technology and big money to do whatever one pleases to do. The more money one has, the louder your voice, the more people you influence. The rest seems to disappear in an ocean of superfluous information.

I've translated a part of a book review that deals with the manufacturing of disease as a way to sell more pills. It's a German book called Die Krankheitserfinder by Jörg Blech.

    Jörg Blech, science editor at the German weekly Der Spiegel, shows remarkable parallels between the modern health industry and the activities of Dr. Knock, the main character in a play by Jules Romain (1923), which was made into a movie several times. Knock has established himself as a new doctor in a French mountain village, where almost everyone feels very healthy. The medical science doesn’t seem to be able to achieve a lot of honor here, but Knock thinks otherwise. He sends in the head teacher in order to inform the public on dangerous germs and invites through the village announcer all residents for a free consultation. His premise is that healthy people are in fact patients who are not yet aware that something is wrong with them. Knock claims that the villagers suffer from a variety of disturbing symptoms and he convinces them that they need urgent treatment. Eventually, nearly the entire population is sick in bed and there are just enough healthy people to take care of them. The local pharmacist thrives...

    In Die Krankheitserfinder, Jörg Blech argues that pharmaceutical companies nowadays put tremendous effort to convince as many people as possible to take medication. Even doctors join this business by providing a diagnosis with innocent complaints and defects, often at the request of verbal patients who already know exactly which syndrome they have. Health seems to be a condition only a few can cherish. There are constantly new diseases and disorders identified. They are often easy to diagnose by a short checklist. Those who answer the majority of the questions with "yes", has a problem for which medical help can be offered. Pharmaceutical companies regularly succeed to have doctors and journalists join their bandwagon. They also sponsor patient organizations, which often work for recognition of the disease that plagues them. There’s more money spent on marketing than on research and development.

    A nice example is the Sisi syndrome, which only became known in Germany.
    It is named after the Austrian Empress Elisabeth, which allegedly suffered from it. From 1998 the new disease appeared regularly in popular magazines, newspapers, TV programs and medical journals. It also appeared in a book and there were seminars and conferences where experts gave their views. They claimed that there may be three million Germans to suffer from this. According to the experts, it was a form of depression that was well hidden. The victims don’t show a passive attitude, on the contrary: Sisis are overactive, optimistic, confident and ambitious. They work hard, do a lot of sports and fitness, travel regularly to distant countries, look attractive, would like to make a perfect impression and never complain. But all this is only a masquerade and a way not to start to worry and ponder. On the inside they feel empty, insecure and unsatisfied. They can also receive physical problems, including loss of appetite, insomnia, abdominal pain and headache. It is especially common in young career women. The cause is a disturbed serotonin balance, which can be effectively treated with the drug Seroxat.

    The Sisi syndrome was exposed by three psychiatrists in the magazine Der Nervenarzt (May 2003). They found out that it was created by GlaxoSmithKline, the manufacturer of Seroxat, which apparently were looking for a larger market. There were no scientific data to support the allegations. The large media attention originated from the activities of Wedopress, a public relations agency that was hired by the pill manufacturer. On its website, Wedopress proudly reported that the Sisi campaign had resulted in 533 publications.

    Driven by the pharmacists in Germany, there is also a lot of attention to problems associated with the menopause. Not just women suffer from this, with men it’s not going well either. They talk about "Aging-Male-Syndrome ', the male menopause. On the website of Jenapharm, one can fill out a checklist to map the complaints, including fatigue and muscle strength decline (http://www.testovital.de). These are attributed to a shortage of testosterone. They always had regarded it as normal that the level of testosterone in men decreased as they grow older, but now it is a disorder that can be treated. Jenapharm provides a gel that needs to be applied daily on the body. German doctors recently determined that the threshold for testosterone is 12 nanomol per liter of blood. This means that approximately 20 percent of 60-year olds suffers from a shortage of testosterone.

    Sale Tricks

    Blech discusses five sale tricks which the pharmaceutical industry applies to increase its sales.

    Trick 1. Natural processes that belong to life, are changed into a medical problem. This is also true for example with hair loss. When the American firm Merck & Co. were the first who had developed a working hair growth substance, the company hired a PR agency to highlight the baldness problem. Soon articles appeared which reported that hair loss may cause psychological problems. The British Medical Journal with the help of its readers had compiled a list of such non-diseases. The top ten included: old age, work, boredom, bags under the eyes, ignorance, baldness, freckles, flap ears, gray or white hair and ugliness. They are not real diseases, but you can go straight to the doctor.

    Trick 2. Personal and social problems are sold as a medical problem. In the old days you were shy, but now you have a social phobia or social anxiety disorder (SAS), which can be treated with antidepressants. In the American media many articles were published on this issue after the drug Paxil (Seroxat) was recognized in 1999 as a treatment for SAS. The American Association for anxiety disorders, which was assisted by a PR agency, announced in a press release that 13 percent of the population suffers from a social phobia.

    Trick 3. Risks are sold as a disease. In the past you were either sick or not. Today you have a certain risk to be ill and should be treated preventively. Thus, an elevated cholesterol level is named as “one of the most important risk factors” for cardiovascular disease. According to an information brochure from the pharmacy it is wise to have the cholesterol levels regularly checked. A high value means only that the (small) chance of a heart attack is somewhat larger, but not that it’s a realistic chance. In addition, by lowering the cholesterol levels, the end of life cannot or hardly be postponed. Blech has a separate section devoted to the difference between an actual disease and the risk of such.

    Trick 4. Relatively rare symptoms are sold as epidemics. For example, since the introduction of Viagra, ever more men have a erectile dysfunction. According to the manufacturer it is a problem that half of all men between 40 and 70 hits. Unlike the US, in Europe public advertising for prescription medicine is not allowed. But it is allowed to educate consumers through information campaigns of the diseases they may suffer from. The manufacturer of Viagra turned to the help of football hero Pele. He advised anyone with erectile dysfunction to go to the doctor. The name "Viagra" was not mentioned, but the doctor could offer help with that, because he had received the necessary promotional literature.

    Trick 5. Mild symptoms are brought as messengers of severe suffering. One example is the Irritable bowel syndrome (PDS), a chronic disease in which perhaps two million Dutch people suffer from. Since a few years, there is also an interest group in Holland for PDS patients (sponsored by the firm Novartis). The most common characteristic symptoms are pain in the lower stomach and a irregular bowel pattern. Previously, doctors didn’t take such complaints too serious, as long as there is no serious cause for the basis. But now there are tablets. The company GlaxoSmithKline came up with the wonder substance Lotronex and started a campaign to raise awareness of the syndrome. Unfortunately Lotronex appeared to have harmful side effects. In the United States dozens of consumers had to be admitted in a hospital with severe constipation or bowel inflammation, and there were seven regrettable deaths.

_________________
Everything I write here is my opinion, not absolute truths but I don't want to start every sentence with in my opinion...


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 6:17 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
Dennis,

The point about "patient organizations" made me think about the following photo, taken August of 2006, toward the end of my 2-year "NO INTERNET!" period (It's like MSG for the mind?), before I knew of the existence of any resistance to the "powers" at all (other than Scientology. But the fact is that if I were the pharmaceutical industry or the APA--and Scientology didn't exist--I'd invent it). Anyway, I was so impressed with the billboard that I made a special trip home to get my camera. I had no idea who I might ever show it to (this is the first I've shared it anywhere) but I knew I just had to have it. Not knowing what "NAMI" was at the time, I squiggled up that print, unfortunately, just below the logo. I know now that while 'patients' use it, NAMI is billed as an organization of "friends and family"--people "supporting" and "advocating" for "the mentally ill". (And I know the industry are major funders of it.) The local paper publishes one of their "Fact Sheets" it seems almost anytime "mental illness" makes the news. After seeing the billboard the first words through my head were "Have Your Insurance Card Ready. All Credit Cards Accepted". What seriously knocked me on my butt was finding out about that logo, once I had Internet again. What was that? Are those rays coming out of that guy''s head 'mental illness rays'?? What is that? I don't know if you can appreciate what it would be like--I felt like a minority of one at the time--but a Google search showed that the logo is titled "Open Your Mind". Absolutely no kidding.

Also, just taking advantage of your good nature, figuring that since this is the 'Cafe' where hopefully informality can sneak in a little, I'm posting an off-topic picture--just while I'm thinking of it (since it's in the same folder as the billboard) of another image done for no good reason I can think of, also never before seen by anyone, also at least a couple years old. Just deals with my buddy Muzafer's finding about how people come to consensuses about things. Which also kind of puts me on my butt. But oh well.

Attachment:
image003.jpg
Attachment:
image006.gif


Steve


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2008 6:55 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 2:06 am
Posts: 486
Location: Sweden
That is one heck of a billboard!! This is one of those things that makes me drop on my knees thanking that I'm not living in the US. Somehow the charlatans have gotten a grip of science and used it as a marketing tool to sell their wonder pills. And the scary thing is that their strategy works, even after the exposure of their fraud. Nami is a cleverly set up PR machine from the pharmaceutical industry. Claiming that Nami is an organization of 'family and friends' is another euphemism. Who can disagree with 'friends and family'? They are the ones that care. And it's in every magazine, in every TV program, even at Wikipedia, so it must be true.

I know that Adbusters used to fight this, but at their website, that part is in serious decline. I've tried several times to get a hold of someone there, to restore what they had started but nothing happens. Everything that Scientology puts out against the pharmaceutical industry is banned from the major press, because the pharmaceutical industry succeeded to widely publicize a slander campaign against them. Not that everything is fine with Scientology, but the part that does the investigation against the pharmaceutical giants, does the job very well.

The other image is quite powerful, too. Politicians and other authorities love crowds. In a crowd there's no room for individual thought. I just remembered an incident, told by my best friend when we were teenagers. He came home telling me that in his class, everyone ridiculed him when they were discussing psychology and he had mentioned Freud. Every single person in his class turned against him telling that Freud had nothing to do with psychology. They called him abnormal. My friend was quite upset and thought that everyone had gone crazy. But when you start telling that everyone is crazy, except you, you know where that usually leads to.

Thanks Steve for showing these images. Even though they are disturbing, it takes a sensible person to give it the attention they deserve.

Mental Illness is Environmentally Based
Mental Illness is a Reaction to an ill Society
Lives can be Destroyed

Call for help as loud as you can


Dennis

Image

_________________
Everything I write here is my opinion, not absolute truths but I don't want to start every sentence with in my opinion...


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 3:59 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
Hey! Amurica is GREAT. The only thing bad about it is that just because the USS Wisconsin costs a measly million dollars a day to run, some moron put her into mothballs--instead of what I'll do with her if I ever get elected president, which is to take her around to places like probably Canada and England and Europe--and certain Scandinavian countries, now, lobbing special sixteen inch (ya wanna see what an inch is, over there?) bouncy rubber shells at everybody with attitudes like yours, so that you'll know who has the coolest stuff, the coolest people, and the coolest pop stars. We got genes from everywhere! It's hybrid vigor, or something!

WE ARE the world,
We are the cheeldren,
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So lets start giving
We're saving our own lives

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Wisconsin_%28BB-64%29

Steve


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
PS Okay you had Shocking Blue. Credit where credit is due.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 5:28 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
Dennis,
Two more things and I'll be satisfied. The Ritalin picture is great, thanks. Never seen it before. I have to assume you've seen the Prozac “mood brightener” “wash your blues away” thing, won't stick it in. Second, I just need to hit it again: stupid people are everywhere. I'm convinced of it. The US is no exception. But bear in mind that this place is anything but a monoculture; it really is true that attitudes from everywhere are all mixed in here. Shortly after finding Miller I hunted for humor regarding child abuse, found a clip of a standup comic who's parents had immigrated from India. The bit revolved around the idea that “if your parents came from outside the US or were black that you got beaten.” Guys standing on a street corner comparing punishments were floored when the middle-class white kid complained that yeah, he'd been sent to his room to think about what he'd done, and how bad that sucked. “You got a ROOM?!”
(My parents were both born here. All four grandparents were European.)

I'm in a state where school spanking remains legal. I was surprised to learn that as I have never heard of a single case of it ever happening here in my lifetime. I checked with my kid, who's gone through 12 years of schooling: he's never heard of it either. Digging deeper, I found there are in fact cases of it, and yeah this is sickening: always from what I've seen it happens in the same few inner-city/urban “black” schools, the ones with extremely low graduation rates. Do your own extrapolating if you care to. Africa has probably for a very long time been as bad as it is today regarding child abuse. (Lowest ranking world-wide, I think, as a continent.) Add that to the fact that the people brought here as slaves were further chained, beaten, bought and sold, regarded as sub-human (throughout life, not just as kids), and you've got a HECK of a lot of buried anger and misery being passed one generation to the next. This is just one of MANY differences between the US and other places in the world. It doesn't mean, however, that the culture as a whole is anything to be afraid of or to regard as a lost cause. I think it's probably too easy to form pictures of what the people of a place are like from second-hand sources like TV, print and the Internet. Even living here—same as anywhere—you only see what you “touch” of it. I do think diversity is healthy, and always have, though I'm afraid the people who most use the term here misapply it. Abuse it, actually. But the bottom line remains that I'm glad we have it, because it makes it difficult or impossible for any single erroneous cultural mindset to 'rise to the top'. I hope you'll agree: they're ALL erroneous since they all involve parents “training” their kids to be like themselves. Actually it seems possible to me that it's on account of this 'soil of confusion' we live with here that some of us try to fight through the BS, search for common denominators.

My ex—who's closest European connections are about four generations back, and has at least a couple siblings that are, considering how bright she is herself, amazingly emotionally stupid (Shh don't tell anybody I said that!), exposure enough to Miller to say “Yeah, I agree with that!” without having delved into every last one of her words by any means—fights like hell as a “good guy” every chance she gets. It's just natural in her. I think probably brought out by exposure to the wide variety of people she's exposed herself to in life and the common ground that many of us (more or less unconsciously, probably) seem to find. Just two quick examples of what I mean: her (upper middle-class) brother was contacted by his (supposedly a little 'slow') young son's teacher, terribly upset that the kid had handed in a drawing done all in black, or maybe it was just a big black square, I'm not sure—but next thing you know a team of psychologists from the university are pushing hard for Ritalin, as a matter of fact, convinced that without it (believe this or not!) the kid will become the next Columbine shooter. (They actually live a mile or so from there.) Her brother of course feels as though he has to bow to the “professionals”; she's shouting “DON'T YOU DARE GIVE ROBBIE THAT GARBAGE!” and feeding her brother all the information she can. I just now sent her Fred Baughman's URL, in case. http://www.adhdfraud.org/ But she's not an exception, is my point. One of her former colleagues (she continues to work with and serve developmentally disabled adults despite her time being mostly taken by an aging parent) is in the Middle-east in some program designed to share “knowledge” with the people there doing the same thing. Wanna guess how those adults are routinely “taught” to not wet themselves in class? It's mean mommies in grocery stores to the tenth power, is what it is, not “knowledge” sharing. It was the last thing this guy had expected to see there, and took him completely by surprise. I guess was shaking in his boots, but stood up for those people, was eventually listened to by the higher-ups, and got the beatings stopped. Hopefully forever in that location. And he wrote my ex and sent her a nice (embroidered, I think) locally made shawl as a present for the support she'd given him during that period.

People are made to be culturally stupid everywhere, not just the US. We just make the headlines more often. Goddam paparazzi!


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 12:33 am 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 2:06 am
Posts: 486
Location: Sweden
Now I know why so many are pushing the slogan 'America is Great'. It's great for all those in power because they get away with so many wrong things. I wasn't talking about the American Individual. I'm talking about the political and corporate policies in the US. Diversity? A two-party system is one step away from a single dictator ship. But that's the indoctrination kids are exposed to: the we versus them syndrome. When things are made black or white, it's much easier to sell.

Diversity? When people have the choice between a thousand similar products at Kmart?

Diversity? Is that why visiting Americans are looking for the nearest McDonalds when they arrive?

I could go on a while like this but it will only turn into a we versus them competition in (false) greatness. Of course there are many great things happening in the US, like most other countries. But that doesn't justify all the bad things, especially when they spread to the rest of the world. Resistance is Futile.

I sure would like that team of psychologists to ask why they want to push Ritalin. Aren't people communicating anymore? So a drawing is what they look at, not how a child responds in social activities (open versus closed)? I have to drop on my knees again, thanking I'm not a teenager now, going to school for they would have locked me up, shoved me full of Ritalin and had forwarded me to a special school for 'kids that still have the strength to resist'.

After the Columbine shooting, some started to point into the direction of Marilyn Manson as the instigator (apparently there are still religious folks around blaming the modern music). They asked him: "What would you tell the kids at the Columbine High School" and he answered cool: 'I wouldn't say anything, I would listen'. Touché.

Dennis

P.S. Don't forget we had Golden Earring as well

_________________
Everything I write here is my opinion, not absolute truths but I don't want to start every sentence with in my opinion...


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2008 7:28 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 6:20 pm
Posts: 106
Location: USA
Well, unlike Marilyn Manson who actually bought a stuffed bear, I myself at least looked at the grocery store yesterday for textured vegetable protein for the stuffed cabbage rolls I'm making at this moment. And I suppose there's room for anyone--what I mean is that you're right, of course, in the ways that you are right; modern "realities" frighten too many of us into tossing away too much of who we are in exchange for the security of the herd. I actually haven't traveled much. But I suspect that the real borders in the world aren't so much the ones seen on maps as they are the one's in people's heads. It's a great comfort to know that health exists other places, I can't overstate that. Excuse me for getting a rush from knowing I'm touching a culture that for all its shit, could still produce this lady: http://www.cmt.com/videos/dolly-parton/67600/imagine.jhtml

take care,
Steve


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 12 posts ] 

All times are UTC + 1 hour [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group