One of the hottest topics in politics today is Health Care. The masses are calling for universal health care, politicians are calling for universal health care, and our leaders keep making empty promises while pumping money into the pharmaceutical industry. The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 is a complete fiasco, promising much but providing only windfall profits for the pharmaceutical industry. Many feel it was designed to eventually destroy Medicare.
If health care is a hot button issue for you, then I’m sure you’ve heard the ostensible reasons behind the exorbitant costs of our health care.
I’m sure you’ve heard that to reduce the price of health care, we must reduce the costs of health care. New technology, new research, scientific breakthroughs, and the cost of bringing new drugs to market; these are the fronted reasons for our skyrocketing health care costs.
The debate is all consuming, everyone has a stake at bringing down health care costs, and everyone has a solution. Supposedly.
Ladies and Gentlemen, this is all a diversion. You can talk costs and prices and research till you require an IV, but it will not change a system that is already sick and dying.
The simplest way to explain the high cost of our health care is:
Our health care system is costly because
it is not a health care system;
it is a disease care system.
Ninety-five percent of our health care dollars go to urgent care with five percent going to prevention.
Were this turned around, the overall price of health care would drop at least fifty percent. Period.
There is, however, an underlying reason why we have this terrible system; why Americans pay the highest health care costs on the planet yet receive an inferior system of health care in which our longevity rate is ranked 20th world wide and our infant mortality rate is ranked 20th.
Editor’s Note: This article was first published in 2008, and the statistics above were from 2007. Today, our rankings, according to the WHO, have even declined further, with the US ranking 43rd in life expectancy, and 46th in infant mortality.
The reason: our government has, since 1806, worked towards making “regular” medicine (conventional, drug based, allopathic) a powerful monopoly.
Got that? Our Government has systematically maneuvered to make orthodox, regular medicine a powerful and profitable monopoly.
And you expect the government to fix a problem it has been creating for 200 years?
When this country was founded, medical freedom was assumed. Early Americans ran away from intolerance hoping to find religious and political freedom. Medical freedom was simply assumed. It was assumed that the people had the right to choose whatever form of health care they preferred.
Dr Benjamin Rush proposed that these rights should be specifically laid out in our Constitution:
“The Constitution of this Republic should make special provision for medical freedom. To restrict the art of healing to one class will constitute the Bastille of medical science. All such laws are un-American and despotic.”
These freedoms did not make it into the Constitution or our Bill of Rights. How could our forefathers have known that Dr Rush’s words ringing through the convention halls would prophesize the exact state of affairs over two hundred years later?
Dr. Rush in his introductory remarks to a course lecture at the University of Pennsylvania on November 3, 1801 delivered what he described as his “causes which have retarded the progress of our science.” Rush said, “Conferring exclusive privileges upon bodies of physicians, and forbidding men of equal talents and knowledge, under severe penalties from practicing medicine within certain districts of cities and countries. Such institutions, however sanctioned by ancient charters and names, are the bastilles of our science.”
This is the state of medicine today. It is a sad state of affairs. Our drug-based medicine heals little, poisons many, and still our people are clamoring for access to it.
Ironic, eh? Especially since I am a fan of science and medicine. The problem is, pharmaceutical profits are more important that human life, and this is just a blatant fact.
In 1806 the first medical licensing laws were passed in New York. This was called the Medical Practices Act; it allowed only state licensed physicians to recover their fees in courts.
Licensing laws were and still are unconstitutional.
Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution reads: “No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.”
Admittedly, this can be confusing (though not as confusing as most legalese today), so let me pull out for you the parts that affect licensing:
“No State shall . . . pass any . . . Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts . . . . “
This has been interpreted by many to mean that no state or federal office can create a licensing law that would restrict free trade. The founding fathers wanted a small government which did not interfere with business. It had a role to protect the consumer against fraud, but could not play favorites or restrict any healing art.
It can be argued that licensing laws protect the consumer against fraud. Some say, “Licensing prevents quackery.”
This, however, is absurd since the first medical practices laws licensed the most fraudulent form of medicine, the most dangerous form of medicine, ever to have been adopted by this new country. The first licensing laws licensed quackery, and continue to license quackery today, as you will soon see.
“I am persuaded that licensure has reduced both the quantity and quality of medical practice…. It has reduced the opportunities for people to become physicians, it has forced the public to pay more for less satisfactory service, and it has retarded technological development…. I conclude that licensure should be eliminated as a requirement for the practice of medicine.” Milton Friedman, Nobel Prize-winning economist.
“Licensing has served to channel the development of health care services by granting an exclusive privilege and high status to practitioners relying on a particular approach to health care, a disease-oriented intrusive approach rather than a preventive approach…. By granting a monopoly to a particular approach to health care, the licensing laws may serve to assure an ineffective health care system.” Lori B. Andrews, professor of law and Norman and Edna Freehling Scholar, Chicago-Kent College of Law.
The first “regular” physicians licensed to practice medicine in young America knew nothing of science, eschewed empiricism (testing a theory), and killed more people than they cured, if they actually cured anyone. They bled, purged, blistered, and poisoned their patients with mercury. It was an honor to be hated by their patients. Being hated by the public put them in good standing with other regular physicians. [Coulter ]
If you are going to argue that licensing laws protect the consumer against fraud, then answer me this:
Why is it the consumer has never asked for any of these laws?
Historically, it has been the medicos who have pressured the government to create laws protecting their practices. Throughout the first half of the 19th century, nearly every law passed restricting medical practices (licensing) were overturned or completely tossed out by the people.
Virtually every law restricting the practice of medicine in America has been enacted not on the crest of public demand, but due to intense pressure from the political representatives of physicians. [Goodman, John C, Musgrave, Gerald L., “Patient Power: Solving America’s Health-Care Crisis,” Cato Institute, 1992]
During much of the 19th century, licensing laws came and went and the public was free to choose its health care. Their options were wide open: nutritional medicine, hydrotherapy, eclectics, Indian Medicine, homeopathy, herbalism, a combination of any of these, midwifery, or a regular physician. By the end of the 19th century, osteopathy, chiropractic, and naturopathy had come into the mainstream.
And then something happened that defines the ruling class in our society, or as J D Rockefeller once said: “Competition is a sin.”
The rich get richer because they form alliances and eschew competition.
It is a sad historical truism that you can always hire half the poor to kill the other half. This is why we have wars. There will always be someone poor enough to fight them. The poor will not unite, till the rich unite them, arm them, uniform them, and send them off to war. Or as Jon Stewart once said, “The poor have such shitty lobbyists.”
The professed highfalutin reasons for the association were to establish standards of medical ethics and medical education; that all doctors should have a “suitable education” and that a “uniform elevated standard of requirements for the degree of M.D. should be adopted by all medical schools in the U.S.”
The ulterior motives would soon come to light.
A report submitted by the committee on educational standards to the first AMA convention in 1847 was unusually candid:
The very large number of physicians in the United States … has frequently been the subject of remark. To relieve the diseases of something more than twenty millions of people, we have an army of doctors amounting by a recent computation to forty thousand, which allows one to about every five hundred inhabitants. And if we add to the 40,000 the long list of irregular practitioners who swarm like locusts in every part of the country, the proportion of patients will be still further reduced. No wonder, then, that the profession of medicine has measurably ceased to occupy the elevated position which once it did; no wonder that the merest pittance in the way of remuneration is scantily doled out even to the most industrious in our ranks – and no wonder that the intention, at one time correct and honest, will occasionally succumb to the cravings of hard necessity.
Regular doctors could not compete with the riffraff practicing “unscientific” medicine. The real program of the AMA, openly discussed, was “to secure a government-enforced medical monopoly and high incomes for mainstream doctors.” [Medical Control, Medical Corruption]
One of the first programs of the newly established AMA was a Quack Hunt.
The practitioners of the greatest quackery of the century went on a quack hunt.
The AMA developed strict standards that its members were to adhere to, or else. The Code of Medical Ethics grew and evolved over the next half century. In 1850 it was unethical to engage in competition or underbid another physician. By the turn of the century, free vaccinations were opposed because it was not in the best interests of young medical men and it was considered highly unethical to give free medical services to the wealthy for it would injure other physicians financially.
Goodman and Musgrave tell us, “By 1901, all states and territories except Alaska and Oklahoma had medical examining boards. Of the 51 jurisdictions, 30 required candidates for a license to undergo an examination and to present a diploma in medicine; seven required either an examination or a diploma; and two made the M.D. degree a prerequisite for the practice of medicine.”
Most interesting is the fact that “of the 42 states that had revocation provisions in their medical practice acts in 1907, “incompetence” was grounds for revocation in only two of them.” The rules of revocation (consulting with a “non” regular physician) reached into the absurd and even got to the point where one physician had his AMA membership revoked for buying milk sugar from a homeopathic pharmacist. [Divided Legacy] Another physician was dropped from the ranks of the AMA for consulting with a physician dropped from the ranks of the AMA for consulting with a homeopath.
The AMA could easily call most other practices (Thomsonians, midwifes, eclectics, herbalists, and the lot) unscientific for there was no formal training for any of these healing arts. Homeopathy was much harder to vilify as it was a codified and systematic medical science that not only had a large following, but was taught at major medical schools.
The first women’s medical college in the world, Boston Female Medical College, founded in 1848, taught homeopathy. It wasn’t till 1915 that women were invited to join the AMA.
Homeopathy was more attractive to the average person, and though the AMA claimed that only the ignorant were attracted to homeopathy, it attracted the most respected members of society: William James, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Daniel Webster, William Seward, Horace Greeley, Louisa May Alcott, William Cullen Bryant, and Susan B. Anthony. Elizabeth Blackwell, the first woman to graduate from an American medical school, and a leading feminist supporter, criticized regular medical science because it was so deadly. Homeopathy was attractive mainly because it did not kill you. Homeopaths actually followed the first rule of medicine, the Hippocratic injunction: “First, do no harm.” [Homeopathic Quotations]
The latter half of the 19th century was homeopathy’s heyday. Regular physicians could hardly compete with them. By 1902 homeopaths did seven times the business of allopaths and there were 15,000 practicing homeopathic physicians in the US. “There were 22 homeopathic medical schools, more than 100 homeopathic hospitals, over 60 orphan asylums and old people’s homes, and 1,000+ homeopathic pharmacies in the US.” [A Condensed History of Homeopathy]
During the 1849 cholera epidemic, homeopaths from Cincinnati kept rigorous records showing that they lost only 3% of their patients, while allopathy lost 16 to 20 times more. Homeopathy made its way south for the yellow fever epidemic of 1878 saving three times the number of patients as allopathy.
One story that I’ve found in two different books and at Lew Rockwell’s site is the following.
One was William H. Holcombe. When he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, he worried, as he wrote in his memoirs, that physicians “were blind men, striking in the dark at the disease or the patient-lucky if [we] killed the malady [instead of] the man.” One day Holcombe was called by the parents of a seriously ill child, whom Holcombe subsequently set about to bleed. Bloodletting was considered especially important for children, and the younger the child, the more blood was to be drawn. But the mother clutched the baby to her breast and cried, “The blood is the life – it shall not be taken away.” When the benighted father agreed, Holcombe “explained to him candidly, and with some display of professional dignity, that my opinion was worth more than his or his wife’s.”
Holcombe left and returned the next day, expecting to find a dead baby. Instead, the child – who had been treated by a homeopath – was playing in the yard. Holcombe later wrote that “after having blistered, bled, and drugged my patients for twenty-seven years, I determined to find some more humane mode.” He was charged with violating “medical ethics,” whose first principle was: “A physician … should cautiously guard against whatever may injure the general respectability of his profession.”
As Rockwell points out, one state senator from New York firmly believed, “The people of this state have been bled long enough in their bodies and pockets.” [Medical Control, Medical Corruption]
Even with the advent of the germ theory of medicine, the ruling theory of medicine today, homeopaths were much more in demand than regular physicians.
But homeopaths did not unite. In fact, homeopaths broke into two different schools, the ones who worked just as Hahnemann had taught, and others who could be called “pseudo-homeopaths.” Later they split into two more groups: those using high potencies and those using low potencies. The amoebic form of medicine did not survive to split again.
For the most part, regular medicine had never been based upon science. Compared to Traditional Chinese Medicine, Western Regular Medicine lacked even the slightest semblance of scientific method. TCM had been based upon the science of observation; six thousand years of observation. In the latter half of the 19th century, western medicine began to take baby steps into empiricism. Interestingly enough, it all came about because of homeopathy. Mark Twain tells us: “The introduction of homeopathy forced the old school doctor to stir around and learn something of a rational nature about his business.” [“A Majestic Literary Fossil,” Harpers Magazine, Feb 1890.]
Physicians began using smaller dosages and kinder methods. The two forms of medicine began to blend and looked very much the same to the average person. The art of medicine became a science when it began testing. Pasteur suggested in 1859 that microorganisms might cause diseases and just six years later Claude Bernard published Introduction to the Study of Experimental Medicine. Two years later Joseph Lister published his work showing that he could reduce post-operative infections by sterilizing the instruments and operating room.
In the early 1880s Robert Koch isolated both the Tuberculosis microorganism and the cholera microorganism, while Edwin Klebs discovered the diphtheria microorganism. By 1890 an effective diphtheria antitoxin had been developed, and just three years later the first modern American medical school opened in Baltimore: John Hopkins University Medical School.
Parke-Davis soon opened the first pharmaceutical research laboratory in the country, but it was in Germany where Aspirin was invented a few years later (using chemicals that had been discovered by Hippocrates a couple thousand years earlier in willow bark).
In 1910, in Germany, Dr Paul Erlich became the Father of Chemotherapy (chemical/drug therapy) with his drug 606. It was called 606 because there had been 605 previous failures; the product of years of testing.
Dr Erlich and his staff created a drug, tested it, modified the formula, and started over again, modifying the drug six hundred and five times. In 1911 he tested the final drug on patients with syphilis. The medical community stood in awe as patent after patient was cured of this deadly disease. However, three percent died from the drug most likely due to inexact methods of pharmacology back then.
The goal of any form of medicine is to heal the sick and care for the dying: “Guerir quelquefois, soulager souvent, consoler toujours” (To cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always.)
Even though many young physicians enter the profession for ideological reasons, eventually most will have to wake up to the simple fact that even they must make a living. Making a living can eventually win out over any idealism, especially when the physician cannot feed or clothe his family. Even while medicine evolved and changed, it still had to compete with other forms. Not willing to rely on the advent of scientific medicine to win out over superstition and ignorance (perhaps because homeopathy, herbalism, and nutrition were just as scientific if given objective testing) regular medicine relied on forming alliances to became a political organization with great influence. While the science of medicine went through its early growing pains, the politics of medicine rushed to create laws that promoted their agenda and wiped out the competition.
Then came the death blow for all medical competition. It began with a restructuring of the AMA, a new platform, new plans, a study to certify medical institutions near bankruptcy; salvation as big money entered the picture, and ended with the infamous Flexner Report.
The Rockefellers invested heavily in the pharmaceutical industry and suddenly medical machinery was labeled quackery. One machine that gave a slight electrical charge over veins and arteries zapping germs, was shunned as quackery never to be thoroughly tested because all the bets were on pharmaceuticals.
The only “machinery” to survive to modern times were those that used radiation (x-rays machines being one). Radium, when discovered, became a very profitable cancer cure, not because it was effective (some feel that as few as one in one thousand actually survived the therapy) but because physicians invested heavily in radium mines.
At the turn of the 20th century, the AMA came right out and admitted that competition was destroying physicians’ incomes. From 1880 to 1903 the number of regular medical schools had grown from 90 to 154. Anyone could hang up a shingle and call himself a doctor. Chiropractic had just been introduced into the mainstream, homeopathy was flourishing, herbalists, nutritionists, and midwives all practiced their art, and regular doctors just could not profit from their practice of medicine.
Though adjusting the spine had been around for over 6000 years (in China), Chiropractic was still quite young at the turn of the century. In fact, it had begun almost serendipitously in America.
From a site that no longer exists called, What is Chiropractic, we found:
The first recorded chiropractic adjustment was performed on September 18, 1895, more than 100 years ago, by Dr. Daniel David Palmer, a teacher and healer who was born in Port Perry, Ontario. At the time, Dr. Palmer was trying to understand the cause and effect of disease. The patient, Harvey Lillard, was a janitor working in the same building as Dr. Palmer in Davenport, Iowa. Mr. Lillard had been bent over under the stairs, hurt his back and had complained of hearing problems as a result for over 17 years. He allowed Dr. Palmer to examine his spine to see if anything could be done. Dr. Palmer discovered a “lump” on Mr. Lillard’s back and suspected that a vertebra might be out of “alignment” and “pinching” a nerve going to Mr. Lillard’s ears. With an admittedly unrefined chiropractic technique, Dr. Palmer adjusted the vertebra with a gentle thrust. After several such treatments, much of Mr. Lillard’s hearing was restored.
With the state governments unwilling to create laws restricting the various healing arts, the AMA hired Joseph McCormack, the secretary of the Kentucky State Board of Health, to “rouse the profession to lobby.” [Rockwell]
Additionally, the AMA got Dr G H Simmons to head up its operation, and along with one more, P Maxwell Foshay, these three men devised a plan for the future. They were so convinced that their plans would succeed, the AMA dropped the “consultation clause” whereby members would be ousted for consulting with a homeopath from their rules, and even allowed homeopaths to become members as long as they stopped practicing homeopathy. Was the AMA opening up its policies? Not in the least. Their plan had more efficient and devious methods of destroying homeopathy and all competition.
The AMA began to bolster their ranks. Preaching ethics (like not competing with other physicians or publishing your prices) and decrying quackery (anything that competed with regular medicine), McCormack traveled about the country and increased the membership to the AMA by eight fold in just ten years.
Dr Simmons just happened to be the one of the biggest quacks you could find in those days. His claims of having earned his degree in Dublin, Ireland were totally bogus. The school he professed to come from did not exist. He was famous mainly for his self promotion. He was a journalist and a newspaper man who knew how to drum up business. When homeopathy flourished, he was a homeopath. When hydrotherapy flourished, he was a hydrotherapist. He did eventually receive a mail-order diploma from Rush Medical College, but he no longer needed any degree when he took over the AMA. His job was to promote conventional medicine and destroy the competition.
In 1904 Simmons helped create the Council on Medical Education. When the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act was passed, the AMA formed the Committee on Medical Legislation to support the Act. The Council on Pharmacy and Chemistry was formed in 1905 to test the claims of medicines.
It was the Council on Medical Education that devised a plan to rank medical schools throughout the country, grading them on a scale from A to C. Working with state medical boards, by 1910 they succeeded in cutting the number of schools from 166 to 131.
But they ran out of money.
The Rockefellers had joined forces with the Carnegie Foundation to create an education fund. They were approached by N P Colwell, the secretary of the AMA’s Council on Medical Education, to finish the job they had started, but could no longer fund.
Simon Flexner, the director of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, proposed that his brother, Abraham Flexner, be hired to finish ranking medical schools. Abraham Flexner owned a bankrupt prep school and knew nothing about medicine. He took his orders from the AMA and the two foundations.
Many historians feel that the Rockefellers were truly the bad guys in this alliance, but Coulter [Divided Legacy] and Brown [Rockefeller’s Medicine Men] seem to feel that John D Rockefeller had been duped.
You see, John D Rockefeller was friend of homeopathy. He referred to it as “a progressive and aggressive step in medicine.” Rockefeller lived to the ripe old age of 99 using only homeopathy in the latter part of his life.
John D Rockefeller had made major grants to homeopathic institutions over the years, and gave specific instructions to Fredrick Gates, his financial advisor, to continue to do so. However, Gates was no friend to homeopathy, and all subsequent grants went only to the orthodox medical institutions; some 300 to 400 million dollars. [Brown, Rockefeller’s Medicine Men, Berkeley: University of California, 1979]
We do not know how Abraham Flexner was instructed to conduct his ranking of medical schools. This was all hush-hush. Supposedly he was to give a thorough investigation of all medical schools and grade their curriculums.
With the AMA on the verge of bankruptcy and unable to complete their initial study, in 1908 they met with Henry Pritchett, president of the Carnegie Foundation and heavily invested in the pharmaceutical industry. Pritchett laid out the funding to complete the study, thus becoming Abraham Flexner’s puppet master.
Flexner went through medical schools faster than Sherman ran through the South. Historians point out that he investigated 69 schools in just 90 days. Years later he would admit to knowing nothing about medical education.
And though we cannot know his exact instructions in the conduct of this investigation, we can surely guess with accuracy what he must have been told to do by the outcome of the Flexner Report.
One might ask why the latter, commercial medical institutions, would be attacked, but you must realize the simple fact that money buys influence. If an institution did not need the Rockefeller/Carnegie money, then the Rockefeller and Carnegie Foundations could not influence their curriculum. That would not do. The dynamic duo had millions of grant dollars to spread around and this was an investment. An investment and nothing less.
With the release of the Flexner Report, the AMA (now recharged with Carnegie money) lobbied heavily, both at the federal and state levels. The report concluded that: “The chiropractics, the mechano therapists, and several others…are unconscionable quacks… The public prosecutor and grand jury are the proper agencies for dealing with them.” Within the next 30 years, 1500 chiropractors would be prosecuted for practicing “quackery.”
Within three years of the release of the Flexner Report, 25 medical schools closed. Altogether, because of the earlier efforts and then the release of the Flexner Report the number of medical schools dropped from 650 to 50.
Private hospitals declined in number from an estimated 2441 in 1910 to 1076 in 1946.
Homeopaths, splintered and refusing to become political, began to lose favor. Medical schools teaching homeopathy changed their curriculums to follow the guidelines promoted in the Flexner Report, and though they might have produced a better student, their homeopathy studies suffered and they produced second rate homeopaths.
The 22 homeopathic medical schools that flourished in 1900 dwindled to just 2 in 1923. By 1950 all schools teaching homeopathy were closed.
If a physician did not graduate from a Flexner approved medical school, he couldn’t find a job. New licensing laws required that medical schools be certified.
By 1925 10,000 herbalists were out of business.
The AMA’s coordinated efforts to crush competition did not end with the Flexner Report. The Council on Pharmacy and Chemistry’s main purpose was to get rid of all over-the-counter medications and treatments that did not require a doctor’s visit.
Unbeknownst to the public, the AMA had been fixing prices. The sudden drop in certified physicians in the country just wasn’t enough, in the eyes of the AMA. They began ousting physicians working for companies that tried to provide health care for their workers. They outlawed the process of “contracting out.”
Hospitals that did not fix their prices lost AMA accreditation. In Illinois near riots broke out when a journalist published “secret fee increases.”
If a patient did not pay his medical bills, especially if he was dissatisfied with the treatment, he was blacklisted and refused further treatment till he paid up.
Charities and churches were attacked by the AMA for giving free medical care to the poor. A huge lobbying effort allowed the AMA to oversee the State Board of Charities, which led to diminished free care; the board could impose fines and jail terms for anyone giving treatment without first getting the patient’s financial status.
The AMA lobbied to stop pharmacists from treating patients and in nearly every state these laws passed. Soon they had to lobby again to stop pharmacists from refilling prescriptions at the request of the patient.
The Rockefeller and Carnegie Foundations showered hundreds of millions of dollars on medical schools that followed the AMA model. This buys them control of curriculum. The curriculum is drug based. Students learn nothing about health; they learn about disease and the drugs used to cure them (though the word cure is used lightly since few drugs actually cured an illness but instead suppressed symptoms).
I was, for a period, a professor of Therapeutics and Pharmacology, and I knew from experience that students were obliged then by me and by others to learn about an interminable number of drugs, many of which were valueless, many of them useless, some probably even harmful…. [Dr. David Edsall, former dean of Harvard medical school.]
By 1934, the AMA House of Delegates published this statement: “All features of medical service in any method of medical practice should be under the control of the medical profession. No other body or individual is legally or educationally equipped to exercise such control.” Their goal, nearly completely realized, was a total monopoly of medical practices. Through its influence on the government, the AMA had come to control education, licensure, treatment options, and price.
Let’s take a break here to sum up where we are and how we got here.
We in American take pride in the advances science has brought us, and yet, when we look back on how medicine in this country evolved into what it is today, as outlined above, we know its evolution had nothing to do with science and had everything to do with politics.
Let’s jump ahead to 1962.
Few people have ever heard of homeopathy, herbalism, or naturopathy. Dieticians have replaced nutritionists. We’ve just made it through the worst modern epidemic since the Spanish flu: a polio epidemic.
Rachel Carson has just published her book, Silent Spring in which, among other things, she questions our use of chemicals and their connection to cancers. Rachel Carson has just been diagnosed with breast cancer and would travel about promoting her book wearing a wig.
A new sleeping pill, Thalidomide, is found to have caused birth defects in thousands of babies born in Western Europe. Although the FDA has kept Thalidomide out of the US market, there is strong public support for stricter and more effective drug regulations.
Drug companies quickly throng to Washington lobbying for stricter controls and the Kefauver-Harris Drug Amendments pass with ease. These new laws will ensure the safety of any drug entering the US market. Incidentally, because of these laws, new drugs must now prove effectiveness.
No one, outside the pharmaceutical circles, expected this, but the amendments pass with ease and suddenly the cost of bringing a new drug to market had skyrocketed.
One might ask: why would the pharmaceutical companies lobby to increase their costs? Some cynics might answer that these costs will be subsidized by the government, and to a degree, they would be correct. All things being equal, the simplest answer is the best: raising the bar would prohibit competition.
How many small companies can afford to spend (today) a billion dollars to bring a drug to market? [Editor’s Note: as of Nov, 2013 it is estimated that it costs five billion dollars to bring a drug to market [our source for this claim no longer exists on the web].
How many herbalists could afford to prove that something growing alongside a highway or in your backyard might cure cancer?
Who in their right mind would spend a billion dollars to prove an herbal remedy does anything when those costs could never be recouped?
No one. Nada. Zilch.
Competition to drug therapies is virtually wiped out.
Drug companies liked the new regulations, especially because the FDA now took the responsibility for passing their drugs onto consumers. Should a drug make it to market that proves later to be dangerous, the onus would fall on the FDA and not necessarily on the drug company. The passage of Kefauver-Harris allowed the FDA to exert complete control over a smaller, but monolithic drug market.
The Kefauver-Harris Act gave the FDA greater control over prescription drugs, new drugs, and experimental drugs, as well as oversight of prescription drug advertising. With all competition crushed and medicine focusing mainly on pharmaceuticals, this Act is considered by many to be the single factor most responsible for the high cost of health care today, that is until the inception of HMO’s and insurance plans.
Or, to give you a little different angle on the situation, what began as an open door policy between the FDA, the pharmaceutical interests, and the AMA has reached its ultimate conclusion: all three are in bed together.
The thing that bugs me is that people think the FDA is protecting them. It isn’t. What the FDA is doing and what the public thinks it’s doing are as different as night and day. [Former FDA Commissioner Dr Herbert Ley]
The Medical Monopoly is here and now — 1962 — firmly established. From here on, it must be protected against any and all competition by the FDA and AMA, and soon by CODEX ALIMENTARIUS, the pharmaceutical cartel in sheep’s clothing.
With the recent rise of interest in alternative or complimentary medicine, or a re-discovery, if you please, all the blockades, hindrances, obstacles, and tactics designed to stop their progression are set in place. Modern medicine is a well armed fortress.
Years of research (very bad research) papers written to debunk nutrition, homeopathy, and naturopathy have been compiled, categorized, and indexed. State medical boards have been given their instructions. If a physician steps outside his tightened circle of practice and uses nutrition or some other form of medicine deemed unworthy by the medical monopoly, s/he is threatened and punished. The state might not be able to prove incompetence or quackery, but the medical boards can, using their internal tribunal system, continue to harass the physician and force him into bankruptcy and s/he goes broke defending her/his practice. Medical boards are part of the government. They have very deep pockets and few risks or repercussions when they take on an offending physician.
Outside agencies purportedly representing the consumer, pretending to protect the consumer, but who are financed by the medical monopoly, such as the Quackbusters, can initiate a SLAPP suit. A SLAPP suite is a Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation, and is used to stop the public from interfering with big business interests. Though the lawsuits filed by the Quackbusters (Quackpots) are ostensibly filed to protect the public, they are in effect SLAPP suits designed to stop a practitioner (and his patients—oddly enough “the public”) from using a therapy that threatens the profits of the medical monopoly.
With the FDA today running a protection racket for the drug companies rather than protecting consumers, safe alternatives are targeted. They’ve been the target of FDA raids since the fifties.
Prior to the fifties, before the FDA had assumed the role of the “enforcer,” medicine had to work underground to destroy its competition. In the thirties, when Dr Royal Rife devised an inexpensive, non-drug cure for some of our most dangerous illnesses, Morris Fishbein, a man who ran the AMA and ruled over medicine for nearly 50 years, approached Rife asking for controlling interest in Rife’s technology, or else. Rife turned him down. Soon afterwards, coincidentally, two of Rife’s offices, on opposite sides of the continent, burned down. His research was stolen, his microscopes were destroyed (they were the only microscopes in history to allow us to view a live virus; they have never been rebuilt) and many people who had worked with Rife and dared to use his methods wound up dead. Dr Milbank Johnson, a supporter of Rife, was poisoned. We’ve found sites claiming that he’d died of a heart attack and that he’d split with Rife, but anyone can re-write history today; just buy a web site.
In the fifties, the FDA now had the authority it needed to protect the medical monopoly. Medicine no longer had to surreptitiously destroy careers and dump bodies in the East River (figuratively). The FDA could arm its agents and work the will of the medical elite.
None of these raids were necessary; most were way too violent and illegal. Only International Nutrition’s raid was justified, and hardly that. It is illegal to advertise that you have a cancer cure. You can list testimonials, give the supplement’s history, but you cannot claim it cures cancer, and anyone who does this should be reminded that it is illegal.
So, there you have it. You now know where we stand and how we got here.
And you still want the government to give us all universal access to health care? Access to this form of health care?
I doubt it. Most of us, when asked the proper question, will answer: we want real health care.
We want real, scientific, health care solutions.
There is a new and dangerous enemy to your health encircling the globe, and it’s not Bird Flu, Swine Flu, or H1N1. It is called CODEX ALIMENTARIS. It purports to protect the public. But, again, as always, the public has never asked for this protection. It purports to have solutions to problems, but they are problems CODEX has invented. For example, CODEX has set out to define the maximum (upper limits) for vitamins and supplements, as defined by “science.” CODEX purports to protect us from dangerous amounts of supplements and vitamins.
Let us quickly step back and define the term “medical science.”
Science is methodology, or, to put it simpler, testing. One tests something, against a control, to determine the results. Do we use this science in medicine? Yes. [See Also, Studies Show.]
Then what’s the problem?
The outcome of a study can be skewed. One law is: The result of any study is skewed proportionally to the amount of money to be gained or lost.
Recent infamous studies stand as great examples of how far the medical monopoly will go to convince the public that alternatives are worthless at best and deadly at worst.
Science is blind. True science does not care whether the outcome is positive or negative. True science does not care whether an herb, a food, or a drug is being tested. True science has a scientific foundation; science is methodology.
Modern medicine does not have a scientific foundation [Which we prove again here: Is Modern Medicine Science?] We’ve just demonstrated this. Who in their right mind would try to convince anyone that drugs are good and nutrition is bad? Yet this is what we’ve been told and this is what the average person believes. Fortunately, this might be changing.
Because true science is based upon a logical and rational foundation, fixing nonexistent problems (as CODEX plans) is not scientific, it’s political.
At this site we’ve proposed Rational Medicine, and it’s worth your time to look at that. We are not anti-drug or anti-vaccination. We are pro rational medicine.
We do not get sick because we do not have drugs coursing through our blood stream.
We get sick because we do not have the proper nutrition in our bodies (we are what we eat, period), we live sedentary lives, and our hearts are not filled with love (yes, love heals).
All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness the important thing is they should be part of our daily lives.
We get sick because we have chemicals in our bodies that were never meant to be there; that our bodies were never meant to contain, handle, or use.
Some of the chemicals that make us sick and kill us are the same chemicals that were supposedly created to “cure” us. It is estimated that two hundred thousand American lives are lost yearly due to pharmaceutical medicines. This is considered a “low” estimate.
One paper that everyone should read is Assessing the Efficacy and Safety of Medical Technologies. It was published in 1978 by the government’s Office of Technical Assessment. Its conclusion is simple: of all medical procedures in use at that time (most are still in use) 80% were never tested, and of those 20% that were tested, more than half were tested badly. (For more on those procedures that weren’t tested, and those that have been tested since, see our articles on Medical Fraud.(I.Link))
When science is done properly, any experiment or study that is repeated will produce predictable results. Science is designed to predict outcome.
One of the greatest frauds pulled off on our public today is the overdosing of our elderly. Give a person three drugs and all double blind studies are out the window; no doctor on earth can tell what the interactions will cause, yet many of our seniors are being forced to take upwards of 8, 10, 12 drugs.
This is quackery; this is fraud; this is murder.
Science tells us that lowering cholesterol will not prevent heart disease, prevent a heart attack, or extend lifespan. Yet cholesterol lowering drugs are one of the drug cartels’ greatest profit makers.
Science has very little to do with our medicine. Our medicine is profit based, not science based.
CODEX is made up of pharmaceutical cartels. Its desire to save us from dangerous vitamins and supplements is self-induced. No one has requested this help. People are dying in droves because of drugs, not because they’ve overdosed on Vitamin C or echinacea.
We are told in FDA talking points that CODEX is not creating laws, but that they are only developing recommendations. However, in Germany, Great Britain, Canada, and elsewhere, these recommendations have, surprisingly, become law. Which was no surprise to many of us.
Because we live in a world where corporations matter more than people, we kowtow to the corporatocracy and continually, acceptingly, put the wolves in charge of the henhouses.
CODEX, in a real and rational world, has no right to study vitamins and supplements. The medical monopoly, in a real and rational world, has no right to define quackery.
The government’s job is to protect the people, not profits.
Yet the FDA has already outlawed a natural sweetener, stevia (but it’s back) and the amino acid L-tryptophan because of a bad batch from China, and in 2006 was being asked by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals to restrict the sale of bioidentical hormones (plant estrogens and natural progesterone). Why? Women aren’t buying into the HRT protocols anymore because studies can’t seem to agree whether it’s killing women or saving their lives. The FDA, the government, wants to protect Wythe Pharmaceutical’s profits, and not women or their right to choose their medicine.
Who exactly is this government? I seem to recall something about “by the people, of the people, and for the people.”
The health care crisis is killing the people. Health care is killing the people. Dr Carolyn Dean MD, ND, author of Death By Modern Medicine, after analyzing government databases and peer review journals concluded thus: “I found that 784,000 people are dying annually, prematurely, due to modern medicine, intervention.” She adds that this too is a low estimate due to the medical monopoly under-reporting, or as the adage goes: A doctor buries his mistakes.
The main point here is this: Medicine is, in most probability, the leading cause of death in America. A secondary point is this: if we sit back and let CODEX, the FDA, and the AMA run roughshod over our rights as citizens, it will only get worse.
Any solution to the health care crisis must come from the people, not the government, especially not from a government that has been hell-bent on protecting the moneyed interests and continued protection of the medical monopoly it’s spent 200 years helping to create.
Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.
True health care begins with proper nutrition. Nutritional therapies are not an alternative form of medicine. Conventional medicine is the alternative. Nutrition is the first, foremost and ultimate medicine. It is the one most important factor of real health.
Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.
Hippocrates (400 BC)
If you do not believe this, then your life, after thirty, will be filled with trips to the doctor, a degenerative illness (or two or three), lots of drugs to mask the symptoms, and, in far too many cases, a long painful hospital stay ending in death: or you might get lucky and drop dead with a heart attack.
Our health care dollars must be focused on prevention. Do we need to study this to prove that prevention is successful? Not one bit. Just look at those societies that focus on prevention. Health care costs are a fraction of ours, and longevity in those countries is greater. The quality of those extra years is greater too.
Freedom of choice is a must in true health care. The AMA can license its regular physicians, but naturopaths, homeopaths, nutritionists, herbalists, shamans, hands on healers, and spiritual healers must be free to practice their art with no interference from the government or any “superior” form of medicine. If I want a half naked shaman dancing around my room tossing chicken feathers in the air, I must be allowed that choice. A government that forces a medical procedure upon its citizens is tyrannical, period.
We must be protected from fraud, but not by the AMA, conventional medicine, the pharmaceutical cartels, or a government that is in collusion with any of them.
In every State, a panel of experts should be created, consisting of a representative of the AMA, a representative of the American College for the Advancement of Medicine, a homeopath, an osteopath, a chiropractor, a naturopath, a nutritionist, and an herbalist. Before any lawsuit can be filed against a practitioner, it must pass this panel by a unanimous decision before it can be adjudicated in a court of law or sent to an internal tribunal established by the medical boards.
In other words, only the clients of a practitioner may file a law suit against that practitioner, and that practitioner will be granted a fair and impartial hearing, which is the right of every individual; a right that no one, no group, no special interest may ever take away or abrogate.
This is the only real fix for health care. Anything less is a Band-Aid that will solve nothing, cure nothing, and end only in reinforcing the unscientific, un-American, unholy medical monopoly.
Presently we are told we are fighting for freedom in Iraq. We don’t even have medical freedom in America, and yet our soldiers are fighting and dying for freedoms elsewhere.
Ironic, eh? Top
References and Further Reading:
Editor’s Note: This article was written before the ACA was implemented. It is our opinion that the ACA is a start. Health care freedom and single payer or Medicare for all is the final goal. We do have an article here of interest about the ACA: A Short History of the Affordable Care Act.
The Healing of Cancer: The Cures the Cover-Ups and the Solution Now! by Barry Lynes – a great book on how the American Cancer Society misleads the American public and collects over 350 million dollars a year in contributions, and how part of the money is used against innovative cancer researchers, how the FDA conspires to stop promising treatments, and much more.
The Cancer Cure That Worked: 50 Years of Suppression by Barry Lynes – A very thorough story of Roy Rife.
World Without Cancer: The Story of Vitamin B17 by G. Edward Griffin – Exposé of an alternative natural way to prevent and cure cancer through nutrition, and the forces in government and in large pharmaceutical firms that are fighting to keep the secret from us.
Dean, Carolyn, MD, ND, Death By Modern Medicine
Ronald Hamowy, “The Early Development of Medical Licensing Laws in the United States, 1875-1900,” Journal of Libertarian Studies 3, no. 1 (1979): 73-119;
John C. Goodman, “The Regulation of Medical Care: Is The Price Too High?” CATO Institute, (1980)
Roger LeRoy Miller, The Economics of Public Issues, 8th ed., Harper & Row (1990)
Dallas Cooley, M.D., “How Do You Know Your Doctor Is Not a Quack?,” Reason, August 1980.
A list of FDA raids (Reprinted from Life Extension Magazine)
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