Corporate Corruption News Stories
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.
The number of corporate prosecutions under President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice in 2022 hovered near the lowest level in decades, according to a new analysis published by the good government group Public Citizen. Federal prosecutors concluded just 99 criminal cases against corporations in 2022, the same number as Donald Trump’s DOJ during his second year, and only a modest increase from the 90 cases the agency brought in 2021. As a consequence, the pace of new prosecutions is at its lowest point since the start of the Clinton administration. “The light-touch approach to enforcement creates opportunities for corporate scofflaws to push the limits of what is legally allowed — risking our health and safety, our environment, our finances, and our communities — in their efforts to maximize profits,” the report warned. The slow pace of enforcement continues a two-decade decline that started after 2000, when there were three times as many corporate prosecutions as today. The Biden administration has also presided over a decline in deferred prosecution agreements and non-prosecution agreements, which the DOJ can use as an alternative to filing charges for corporate malfeasance. These more lenient agreements typically involve large multinational companies. In 2022, there were just 11. Biden’s DOJ has also expanded a policy that allows corporations to self-report misconduct in exchange for the government’s guarantee not to prosecute.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.
Victims who suffered life-changing injuries from the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine say they have faced censorship on social media when trying to discuss their symptoms. The UK-based pharmaceutical giant is being sued in the High Court in a test case by a father-of-two who suffered a significant permanent brain injury as a result of a blood clot after receiving the jab in spring 2021. A second claim is also being brought by the widower and two young children of a woman who died after having the jab. Some who have experienced serious adverse reactions from the AstraZeneca vaccine ... have been given “warnings” on social media websites such as Facebook when trying to talk to one another about their experiences. They say they are being forced to “self censor” and speak in code to avoid having their support groups shut down. In one instance, YouTube attempted to censor a video of testimony given by lawyers to the Covid Inquiry about vaccines, flagging the clip as a violation of its “medical misinformation policy”. UK CV Family, a private Facebook group with 1.2k members for people left injured or bereaved from Covid vaccines, was started in November 2021 by Charlet Crichton after she suffered an adverse reaction from the AstraZeneca jab. Facebook blocked Ms Crichton from commenting at one stage “to prevent misuse” and there were occasions where her account was temporarily banned because her “activity didn’t follow our community standards”.
An opaque network of government agencies and self-proclaimed anti-misinformation groups ... have repressed online speech. News publishers have been demonetized and shadow-banned for reporting dissenting views. NewsGuard, a for-profit company that scores news websites on trust and works closely with government agencies and major corporate advertisers, exemplifies the problem. NewsGuard’s core business is a misinformation meter, in which websites are rated on a scale of 0 to 100 on a variety of factors, including headline choice and whether a site publishes “false or egregiously misleading content.” Editors who have engaged with NewsGuard have found that the company has made bizarre demands that unfairly tarnish an entire site as untrustworthy for straying from the official narrative. In an email to one of its government clients, NewsGuard touted that its ratings system of websites is used by advertisers, “which will cut off revenues to fake news sites.” Internal documents ... show that the founders of NewsGuard privately pitched the firm to clients as a tool to engage in content moderation on an industrial scale, applying artificial intelligence to take down certain forms of speech. Earlier this year, Consortium News, a left-leaning site, charged in a lawsuit that NewsGuard’s serves as a proxy for the military to engage in censorship. The lawsuit brings attention to the Pentagon’s $749,387 contract with NewsGuard to identify “false narratives” regarding the war [in] Ukraine.
Note: A recent trove of whistleblower documents revealed how far the Pentagon and intelligence spy agencies are willing to go to censor alternative views, even if those views contain factual information and reasonable arguments. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of news articles on corporate corruption and media manipulation from reliable sources.
For the past two weeks, I’ve been using a new camera to secretly snap photos and record videos of strangers in parks, on trains, inside stores and at restaurants. I was testing the recently released $300 Ray-Ban Meta glasses that Mark Zuckerberg’s social networking empire made in collaboration with the iconic eyewear maker. The high-tech glasses include a camera for shooting photos and videos, and an array of speakers and microphones for listening to music and talking on the phone. The glasses, Meta says, can help you “live in the moment” while sharing what you see with the world. Meta, Apple and Magic Leap have all been hyping mixed-reality headsets that use cameras to allow their software to interact with objects in the real world. To inform people that they are being photographed, the Meta Ray-Bans include a tiny LED light embedded in the right frame to indicate when the device is recording. When a photo is snapped, it flashes momentarily. When a video is recording, it is continuously illuminated. As I shot 200 photos and videos with the glasses in public, including on BART trains, on hiking trails and in parks, no one looked at the LED light or confronted me about it. And why would anyone? It would be rude to comment on a stranger’s glasses, let alone stare at them. The ubiquity of smartphones, doorbell cameras and dashcams makes it likely that you are being recorded anywhere you go. But Chris Gilliard, an independent privacy scholar who has studied the effects of surveillance technologies, said cameras hidden inside smart glasses would most likely enable bad actors — like the people shooting sneaky photos of others at the gym — to do more harm.
Sidney M. Wolfe, an American physician turned activist who relentlessly lobbied against drug companies and the US Food and Drug Administration, died on Monday in his Washington home. He was 86. Wolfe ... co-founded the Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, which “promotes research-based, system-wide changes in health-care policy and drug safety,” according to the group’s website. He also served as the director and senior adviser of the non-profit, where he crusaded against FDA rulings on more than two dozen dangerous or ineffective drugs until they were yanked off the market. In an op-ed published in HuffPost in 2011, Wolfe ridiculed the FDA for being “cautious on food safety — reckless on prescription drug safety.” The banned medicines include the diabetes drug phenformin, which was linked to hundreds of deaths and sold under the trade names DBI and Meltrol in the US for 20 years. Wolfe was also responsible for the banning of the anti-inflammatory Vioxx ... which he warned caused serious heart damage years before it was taken off the market — as well as the anti-diarrheal alosetron. His group also successfully petitioned federal regulators to include a warning on aspirin bottles about Reye’s syndrome, a rare but potentially fatal condition that causes swelling in the liver and brain. In addition, Wolfe was a fierce foe of silicone gel-filled breast implants for breast augmentation and reconstruction surgeries, claiming in the 1980s that they cause cancer.
Note: Read the full remembrance of Dr. Sidney Wolfe’s legacy. His leadership helped remove 28 dangerous medications off the market, and paved the way for “vital and path-breaking research and advocacy on doctor discipline, mental health, tobacco, pharmaceutical marketing, drug company payments to doctors, medical devices, health insurance and the imperative of Medicare for All, unnecessary Cesarean sections, unregulated supplements, medical resident work hours, and more.” For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.
The former opinion editor of the New York Times, James Bennet, took his former employer to task recently in a lengthy essay. The headline of the piece boldly asserted that the New York Times has “lost its way.” Inasmuch as the newspaper represents professional expectations and standards for the entire journalism world, Bennet could be translated as saying the broader news industry has also lost its way. The Times is just the largest float at the front of a parade heading in the wrong direction. Public sentiment about the news industry as a whole is at dismal levels. Gallup polling shows Americans’ confidence in the news media to report in a “full, fair and accurate way” is at historically low levels. Given this lack of trust, it only stands to reason that Americans are less likely to follow the news at all. There is no need to consume news from sources one can’t trust. Journalists rank near the bottom of public ratings of professions in terms of ethics and honesty. Activism has replaced journalism’s former mission to provide fact-based information on which citizens can manage their lives and hold the powerful accountable. Of course, opinion and analysis have always been a part of journalism. But there has long been a sense in the journalism profession that such activist content was to be confined to designated sections, and that the news was to be fact-driven and balanced. Fairness is a skill that journalists once prided themselves on achieving.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of revealing news articles on media corruption from reliable sources.
In the past 20 years, every major US foreign policy objective has failed. The Taliban returned to power after 20 years of US occupation of Afghanistan. Post-Saddam Iraq became dependent on Iran. Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad stayed in power despite a CIA effort to overthrow him. Libya fell into a protracted civil war after a US-led NATO mission overthrew Muammar Gaddafi. Ukraine was bludgeoned on the battlefield by Russia in 2023 after the US secretly scuttled a peace agreement between Russia and Ukraine in 2022. Despite these remarkable and costly debacles ... the same cast of characters has remained at the helm of US foreign policy for decades. American foreign policy is not at all about the interests of the American people. It is about the interests of the Washington insiders, as they chase campaign contributions and lucrative jobs. In short, US foreign policy has been hacked by big money. To understand the foreign-policy scam, think of today’s federal government as a multi-division racket controlled by the highest bidders. The Wall Street division is run out of the Treasury. The Health Industry division is run out of the Department of Health and Human Services. The Big Oil and Coal division is run out of the Departments of Energy and Interior. And the Foreign Policy division is run out of the White House, Pentagon and CIA. Each division uses public power for private gain through insider dealing, greased by corporate campaign contributions and lobbying outlays.
Note: War profiteering is an old game. General Smedley Butler wrote War is a Racket in 1935. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and government corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Military-Intelligence Corruption Information Center.
As of Wednesday, a U.S.-based Quaker group’s online database listed over two dozen companies profiting from the bloodshed in the Gaza Strip, where Israeli forces have spent the last 10 weeks waging what experts call a “genocidal” war that sent defense stocks soaring. Backed by $3.8 billion in annual military aid from the United States, Israel declared war on October 7 in retaliation for a Hamas-led attack that killed over 1,100 people. Since then, Israeli forces have killed over 20,000 Palestinians in Gaza. “The scale of destruction and war crimes in Gaza would not be possible without massive weapon transfers from the U.S.,” said Noam Perry of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). Boeing, the world’s fifth-largest weapon manufacturer, makes F-15 fighter jets and Apache AH-64 attack helicopters used by the Israeli forces, as well as “multiple types of unguided small diameter bombs (SDBs) and Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) kits” that have been used “extensively” during the war. Caterpillar’s armored D9 bulldozers ... have been crucial in the Israeli military’s ground invasion. Other companies on the list include weapons giants such as General Dynamics, General Electric, L3Harris Technologies, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and RTX—formerly Raytheon—as well as vehicle companies AM General, Ford, Oshkosh, Toyota, and drone manufacturers AeroVironment, Skydio, and XTEND.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and corporate corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Military-Intelligence Corruption Information Center.
Karen McCormack, a retired Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientist who spent 40 years with the agency, told Al Jazeera’s investigative show Fault Lines that she believed the EPA was not fulfilling its mission to protect the public from harmful chemicals. “In the last three decades that I have worked at EPA it has been very rare for a toxic pesticide to be taken off the market,” she told Fault Lines. “Just about every, every new pesticide application that is submitted to the agency is approved, no matter how high the risk.” As the Al Jazeera report notes, paraquat is banned in 58 countries but its use is on the rise in the United States. The Guardian’s Paraquat Papers, published in 2022 in collaboration with the New Lede, exposed years of corporate efforts to cover up paraquat’s links to Parkinson’s disease, mislead the public, challenge published scientific literature and influence the EPA. Dr Deborah Cory-Slechta, a prominent researcher, told Al Jazeera: “There is a very strong and compelling body of evidence based on the epidemiology studies and what we know from animal models of Parkinson’s disease” that paraquat causes changes in the brain that lead to Parkinson’s. As revealed by the Guardian, in 2005 Syngenta worked behind the scenes to keep Cory-Slechta from sitting on an EPA advisory panel, deeming her a threat to paraquat. Company officials wanted to make sure the efforts could not be traced back to Syngenta, the documents showed.
Note: Internal corporate documents reveal how global chemical giant Syngenta secretly influenced scientific research regarding links between its top-selling weedkiller and Parkinson's disease. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and government corruption from reliable major media sources.
It is against the law to use paraquat in China, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and dozens of other countries. Many countries have banned the herbicide due to its extreme toxicity, while others have expressed concerns over the possible risk for Parkinson's disease. Yet the herbicide, manufactured by a Swiss company that is owned by the Chinese state, is still widely used throughout the United States in part because it is a highly effective way to kill weeds. The company, Syngenta, says that paraquat, which it produces under the name Gramoxone, "is safe for its intended and labelled use." Clayton Tucholke, who used Gramoxone for years on his farm in LaBolt, South Dakota, and has since been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, says otherwise. "It should have been pulled, I think, you know, so it didn't happen to somebody else," Tucholke told ABC News. The Tucholkes are among the more than 4,000 Americans who have filed lawsuits as part of a multi-district litigation against Syngenta, which currently manufactures Gramoxone, and Chevron, which distributed it in the U.S. from 1966 until 1986. Although Syngenta and Chevron told ABC News that there is no scientific evidence that supports a causal link between paraquat and Parkinson's disease, the Tucholkes and other plaintiffs allege that such a link exists, arguing that Syngenta and Chevron knew or should have known that the herbicide could "cause severe neurological injuries."
Note: Internal corporate documents reveal how global chemical giant Syngenta secretly influenced scientific research regarding links between its top-selling weedkiller and Parkinson's disease. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.
A Ninth Circuit panel on Wednesday rolled back the Environmental Protection Agency’s approval of the use of the pesticide streptomycin sulfate on citrus groves to fight citrus disease. The underlying lawsuit was brought by farmworkers and other interest groups, which argued the EPA had greenlit streptomycin sulfate for use on citrus plants without adequately considering potential harms from the chemical. The panel, consisting of U.S. Circuit Judges Ronald Gould and Johnnie Rawlinson ... and Daniel Bress ... partially ruled in favor of the EPA — determining there was substantial evidence for the EPA’s assessment concerning risks which could lead to antibiotic resistance. However, they said, the EPA’s assessment concerning risks to bees and other pollinators was incomplete. In a statement after the ruling, the Center for Biological Diversity, one of the groups involved in the suit, applauded the Ninth Circuit's decision. The rollback of streptomycin approval "is a significant win for public health, farmworker safety and endangered species," [said attorney] Hannah Connor. Streptomycin sulfate is used as an antibiotic to treat serious illnesses but has also found use as a pesticide. The Center for Biological Diversity claims spraying streptomycin on citrus trees to combat citrus greening disease is “highly ineffective” and argues that its use as a pesticide violates the Endangered Species Act because it causes long-term health effects to endangered animals and plants.
Poison control centers across the US say they are seeing a steep increase in calls related to semaglutide, an injected medication used for diabetes and weight loss, with some people reporting symptoms related to accidental overdoses. Some have even needed to be hospitalized for severe nausea, vomiting and stomach pain, but their cases seem to have resolved after they were given intravenous fluids and medications to control nausea. From January through November, the America’s Poison Centers reports nearly 3,000 calls involving semaglutide, an increase of more than 15-fold since 2019. In 94% of calls, this medication was the only substance reported. In most of the calls, people reported dosing errors, said Dr. Kait Brown, clinical managing director of the association. “Oftentimes, it’s a person who maybe accidentally took a double dose or took the wrong dose,” Brown said. Semaglutide was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2017. It is sold as Ozempic when used for diabetes and Wegovy when used for weight loss. Even when used as directed by a doctor, people can have stomach and bowel side effects, including nausea, vomiting and constipation, especially when they start the drugs. After celebrities began openly embracing Ozempic on social media in 2022 as a way to lose weight, demand overwhelmed supply. There’s no specific antidote for a semaglutide overdose.
Note: The money behind the makers of weight-loss drugs is staggering, with the economic value of Wegovy's Novo Nordisk soaring to over $420 billionexceeding the entire GDP of Denmark, its home country. Read more on the significant adverse effects associated with these drugs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.
Palantir’s founding team, led by investor Peter Thiel and Alex Karp, wanted to create a company capable of using new data integration and data analytics technology — some of it developed to fight online payments fraud — to solve problems of law enforcement, national security, military tactics, and warfare. Palantir, founded in 2003, developed its tools fighting terrorism after September 11, and has done extensive work for government agencies and corporations though much of its work is secret. Palantir’s MetaConstellation platform allows the user to task ... satellites to answer a specific query. Imagine you want to know what is happening in a certain location and time in the Arctic. Click on a button and MetaConstelation will schedule the right combination of satellites to survey the designated area. The platform is able to integrate data from multiple and disparate sources — think satellites, drones, and open-source intelligence — while allowing a new level of decentralised decision-making. Just as a deep learning algorithm knows how to recognise a picture of a dog after some hours of supervised learning, the Palantir algorithms can become extraordinarily apt at identifying an enemy command and control centre. Alex Karp, Palantir’s CEO, has argued that “the power of advanced algorithmic warfare systems is now so great that it equates to having tactical nuclear weapons against an adversary with only conventional ones.”
The nation’s largest pharmacy chains have handed over Americans’ prescription records to police and government investigators without a warrant, a congressional investigation found, raising concerns about threats to medical privacy. Though some of the chains require their lawyers to review law enforcement requests, three of the largest — CVS Health, Kroger and Rite Aid, with a combined 60,000 locations nationwide — said they allow pharmacy staff members to hand over customers’ medical records in the store. Pharmacies’ records hold some of the most intimate details of their customers’ personal lives, including years-old medical conditions and the prescriptions they take for mental health and birth control. Because the chains often share records across all locations, a pharmacy in one state can access a person’s medical history from states with more-restrictive laws. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, regulates how health information is used and exchanged among “covered entities” such as hospitals and doctor’s offices. But the law gives pharmacies leeway as to what legal standard they require before disclosing medical records to law enforcement. In briefings, officials with eight American pharmacy giants — Walgreens Boots Alliance, CVS, Walmart, Rite Aid, Kroger, Cigna, Optum Rx and Amazon Pharmacy — told congressional investigators that they required only a subpoena, not a warrant, to share the records.
If you’ve ever found yourself absentmindedly humming the “oh-oh-oh-Ozempic” jingle, you have David Paton to blame. The singer-songwriter ... co-wrote “Magic” — the 1975 hit for his band Pilot that he reworked and sang for the trendy weight-loss drug’s TV commercials, which play incessantly. “I have heard from doctors about patients not remembering the names of drugs but singing the songs,” a former product manager for drug companies that include Merck and Pfizer, [said]. It can cost billions of dollars to develop a pharmaceutical, so promoting it is essential. And that all starts with the name. “We try to craft a name that [has] five to nine letters and two to four syllables.” But it even comes down to the exact letters. “Let’s say there is an oral drug instead of an injectable, we’ll explore something that sounds liquidy or has an O in it,” Fernando Fernandez, managing director of BX: Brand Experience Design Group, [said]. “If we expect a product to have an extra level of efficacy, we might put an X in the name.” Consumers like taking drugs with the letter Z, which may have played a role in the naming of Ozempic and Zepbound. According to the Canadian Medical Journal, the letters X, Y and Z all impart a “high tech, sciency” [sic] feeling to drugs such as the sleeping medication Xanax. “People have hesitancy about taking drugs,” a medical advertising veteran told The Post. “If they don’t have diabetes, they wonder why they are taking a diabetes drug to lose weight. The weight-loss drug has to be called something different, even though it is very close to being the same thing. The name Wegovy is playful and memorable and obviously works.”
Note: The money behind the makers of weight-loss drugs is staggering, while concerns grow about the significant adverse effects of these drugs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma profiteering from reliable major media sources.
A New Zealand man was recently arrested after allegedly illegally accessing COVID-19 vaccine data from the country's health agency. Barry Young, 56, a former IT employee at Te Whatu Ora, the country's health agency, was arrested and accused of illegally obtaining COVID-19 vaccine data and sharing it on the internet. Young appeared on Infowars, where he was interviewed by ... Alex Jones. "I just looked at the data and what I was seeing, since the rollout, it just blew my mind. I was just seeing more and more people dying that shouldn't have been dying. It was just obvious," Young told Jones. The incident comes as COVID-19 vaccine skeptics have continued to question the efficacy of the inoculation. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton recently announced that he was suing vaccine manufacturer Pfizer "for unlawfully misrepresenting the effectiveness of the company's COVID-19 vaccine and attempting to censor public discussion of the product." During the interview with Infowars, Young explained that he had suspicions about the COVID-19 vaccine in New Zealand since its rollout. "I want people to analyze this, I want people to look at it...we need to open it up and the government needs to have an inquiry about it. Just bring it to the public's attention," Young said.
Note: U.S.-based genomics scientist Kevin McKernan had uploaded Barry Young's data onto a file hosting service, MEGA, only to have his whole account deleted by MEGA overnight. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on COVID vaccine problems from reliable major media sources.
The annual “Trouble in Toyland” report, produced by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) and released before the holiday season, historically has focused on safety hazards found in traditional children’s toys. According to the 38th annual “Trouble in Toyland” report, released in mid-November, “Toys that spy on children are a growing threat.” The threats “stem from toys with microphones, cameras and trackers, as well as recalled toys, water beads, counterfeits and Meta Quest VR headsets.” “The riskiest features of smart toys are those that can collect information, especially without our knowledge or used in a way that parents didn’t agree to,” said Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog at the U.S. PIRG Education Fund and author of the report. “It’s chilling to learn what some of these toys can do,” Murray said. Smart toys include “stuffed animals that listen and talk, devices that learn their habits, games with online accounts, and smart speakers, watches, play kitchens and remote cars that connect to apps or other technology,” according to PIRG. Smart toys can pose the risk of data breaches, hacking, potential violations of children’s privacy laws such as the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA), and exposure to “inappropriate or harmful material without proper filtering and parental controls.” According to PIRG, “We don’t know with certainty when our child plays with a connected toy that the company isn’t recording us or collecting our data.”
Note: A 2015 New York Times article called smart objects a "trainwreck in privacy and security." 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.
Drugmaker Novo Nordisk paid U.S. medical professionals at least $25.8 million over a decade in fees and expenses related to its weight-loss drugs [Wegovy and Saxenda], a Reuters analysis found. It concentrated that money on an elite group of obesity specialists who advocate giving its powerful and expensive drugs to tens of millions of Americans. Those payments are part of a campaign to convince U.S. doctors to make Wegovy one of the most widely prescribed drugs in history – and to persuade skeptical insurers to pay for it. Overall, at least 57 U.S. physicians each accepted at least $100,000 from Novo in payments associated with Wegovy or Saxenda. They were an influential group: Forty-one were obesity specialists who run weight-management clinics, work at academic hospitals, write obesity-treatment guidelines or hold top positions at medical societies, according to a Reuters review. "As sales grow, Medicare and the insurance industry come under intense pressure to pay for these hugely expensive drugs,” [Former dean of the US military's medical school Dr. Arthur] Kellermann said. “The end result is that everybody's healthcare costs go up.” U.S. and European regulators are studying whether GLP-1 drugs can cause suicidal thoughts. Reuters reported in September that at least 265 reports have been filed with the FDA since 2010 describing suicidal ideation or behavior in patients taking these drugs. Thirty-six reports described a death by suicide or suspected suicide.
Note: The money behind these obesity drug makers is staggering. The economic value of Novo Nordisk soared to over $420 billion, which exceeds the entire GDP of Denmark, its home country. As Lee Fang reports in this investigative piece on the issue, “The company is growing so fast, bringing in so many American dollars, that the Danish central bank recently devalued its currency to keep it in line with the euro.” For more along these lines, read the growing reports of concerning adverse side effects from these weight-loss drugs.
Nonprofit hospitals have been caught doing some surprising things, given how they are supposed to serve the public good in exchange for being exempt from federal, state and local taxes — exemptions that added up to $28 billion in 2020. Detailed media reports show them hounding poor patients for money, cutting nurse staffing too aggressively and giving preferential treatment to the rich over the poor. Nurses and other workers recently resorted to strikes to improve workplace safety at Kaiser Permanente and the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, N.J. That’s not the end of it. Nonprofit executives have embarked on an acquisition spree, assembling huge systems of hospitals and physician practices to raise prices and increase profits. Ample evidence indicates that the growth of these giant systems makes health care less affordable for patients, families and businesses. Calling these hospitals nonprofits can be confusing. It doesn’t mean they can’t make money. What it means is that they are considered charities by the Internal Revenue Service (as opposed to being owned by investors, like for-profit hospitals). And in return for their tax exemptions, these institutions are supposed to invest the money that would have gone to taxes into their communities by lowering health care costs, providing community health services and free care to those unable to afford it and conducting research.
Medical experts and politicians have called for the amount of antidepressants being prescribed to people across the UK to be reduced in an open letter to the government. The letter coincides with the launch of the all-party parliamentary group Beyond Pills, which aims to reduce what it calls the UK healthcare system’s over-reliance on prescription medication. A total of 8.6 million patients in England were prescribed antidepressants in 2022-23, with the amount having almost doubled since 2011. Published in the British Medical Journal ... the letter says: “Rising antidepressant prescribing is not associated with an improvement in mental health outcomes at the population level, which, according to some measures, have worsened as antidepressant prescribing has risen.” The letter goes on to say that reducing the rate of antidepressant prescriptions could be achieved through measures that includes stopping the prescribing of antidepressants for mild conditions, and funding and delivering a national 24-hour prescribed drug withdrawal helpline ... to help those experiencing withdrawal symptoms from prescription medication. [Former chief executive of NHS England, Nigel] Crisp said: “The high rate of prescribing of antidepressants over recent years is a clear example of over-medicalisation, where patients are often prescribed unnecessary and potentially harmful drugs instead of tackling the root causes of their suffering, such as loneliness, poverty or poor housing.
Note: Antidepressants are some of the most commonly prescribed medications, yet their significant risks are often withheld from public debate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.
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