Did Big Pharma fund the swine flu panic?

The British Medical Journal dropped a bombshell this month when its features editor Deborah Cohen teamed up with journalist Philip Carter of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism. Together, they found out that the key scientists advising the World Health Organization on planning for the H1N1 influenza pandemic had done paid work for the very pharmaceutical firms that stood to gain from their advice.

Almost exactly one year ago on June 9, 2009, Dr. Margaret Chan, the director general of the World Health Organization, announced to the world’s media:

“I have sought guidance and advice from an Emergency Committee established for this purpose. On the basis of these expert assessments of the evidence, the scientific criteria for an influenza pandemic have been met. The world is now at the start of the 2009 influenza pandemic.”

Well, who knew that Chan’s “expert assessments” provided by her committee members were tainted? The WHO guidelines were pepared in collaboration with a group called the European Scientific Working Group on Influenza (ESWI).” But what this committee did not disclose is that ESWI is funded entirely by the drug company Roche and other influenza drug and flu vaccine manufacturersContinue reading

Stock market tip: how to profit from the swine flu scare

 flu coughThe bad news: scientists are predicting a pandemic of the H1N1 flu virus, commonly called swine flu.  The good news: you can make money from swine flu!  Jim Cramer, the nightly face of Mad Money on CNBC, suggests that stock market investors should climb aboard the gravy train that’s headed for big drug company profits thanks to anti-viral drugs. “Who do I think is the swine flu winner?” is his rhetorical query. “Gilead, a biotech company that developed Tamiflu in 1999. Gilead gets 80% of its sales from its fabulous HIV franchise. But it also earns royalties on the sales of Tamiflu.”

This is apparently how stockbrokers talk – referring to the HIV virus and accompanying drug sale profits as a “fabulous franchise”.  Continue reading