Is Big Pharma the new version of the military-industrial complex we’ve been warned about since the days of President Eisenhower? Yes, says Max Blunt of Radical Left:
Chalmers Johnson said about the US military-industrial complex: “I guarantee you when war becomes that profitable, you are going to see more of it.” In exactly the same way, as mental illness has become extremely profitable, we are seeing more of it…There are other parallels between the military-industrial complex and the psychopharmaceutical-industrial complex. Vital to the profits of both are supportive U.S. government regulatory, research, and purchasing agencies.
There is nothing more important for a drug manufacturer than FDA approval and so it is common sense that a pharmaceutical company will spend whatever it takes to ensure FDA approval … Joseph Glenmullen, in Prozac Backlash, notes that Paul Leber, director of the FDA’s division of neuropharmacological drug products, left the FDA in the late 1990s to direct a consulting firm that specializes in advising pharmaceutical companies attempting to gain FDA approval for new psychiatric drugs.
Robert Whitaker, in his book Mad in America, summarized the beginnings of Big Pharma’s corruption of America’s psychiatrists and their professional organization, the American Psychiatric Association … By the early 1970s, all of psychiatry was in the process of being transformed by the influence of drug money. Pill-oriented shrinks could earn much more than those who relied primarily on psychotherapy (prescribing a pill takes a lot less time than talk therapy).
Drug-company sales representatives who came to their offices often plied them with little gifts (dinners, tickets to entertainment, and the like); and their trade organization, the APA, had become ever more fiscally dependent on drug companies. 30 percent of the APA’s annual budget came from drug advertisements to its journals…
Drug companies have also been successful hijacking university psychiatry departments … Marcia Angell, physician and former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine and author of The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It, reported that the head of the psychiatry department at Brown University Medical School made over $500,000 in one year consulting for drug companies that make antidepressants.
If that’s not enough to make you depressed, I don’t know what is.