Monday, November 21, 2011

Cancer, the FDA, Big Pharma, Burzynski, & Fascism in the U.S.

For this story I'm using Mussolini's definition of Fascism: the perfect marriage of the power of the State to the power of mega corporations. FDR also used that definition. I suspect that they both knew what they were talking about when it came to that subject.

I'm basing this essay on the completely amazing documentary, Burzynski: Cancer is Serious Business. It can be found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=jRua3NLg-Z8 .  If that doesn't work, try Googling it. Due to time constraints, I'm greatly condensing the story; I hope everyone takes the time to view the film. It's a fascinating illustration of Fascism in America.

Have you ever heard of the cancer treatment "antineoplastons"? These substances, which have no toxic side effects, were discovered and developed over a period of about 20 years by Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski. Basically, the substances turn genes ON and OFF, genes important in fighting cancer. [Everyone gets cancer; usually the body can fight it off.] Even the FDA and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) admit that antineoplastons completely cure a wide variety of cancers in up to 50% of cases. Why not 100%? No one knows; more research is needed. Research is extremely expensive.

About 30-40 years ago, many States had laws allowing individuals, not just large pharma companies, to research & develop new drugs and to conduct clinical trials as long as it was all done within the State. At that time, the Feds agreed. After discovering antineoplastons in the urine of cancer-free patients and cancer patients with none, Dr. B (I'll abbreviate to save time) founded the Burzynski Research Institute (BRI) in Houston, Texas in the '70s. He is not only a medical doctor, but also holds a PhD in Biochemistry. He hired a staff of MDs, chemists, and other researchers and began developing a protocol for antineoplaston cancer treatment. As the months and years went by, he began to experience significant success with people who had tried chemo and radiation to no avail (& were pronounced irreversibly terminal) AND with cancer patients who had opted for no chemo and/or radiation. Shortly thereafter, he began having big problems with the Texas Medical Board, the FDA, and eventually the NCI.

Cancer treatment is a trillion dollar business. Patented chemo treatments (drugs) are a large part of that business. Due to "user fees" charged drug companies by the FDA, the FDA literally is on the payroll of Big Pharma. Some applications for new drugs entail a "user fee" of a million dollars. Half of FDA's funding comes from fees charged to drug companies. It would be naive to think that kind of money won't be protected by any means necessary. But we don't need to speculate; we have the crystal clear case of Dr. B and BRI.

Over a total of 14 years, Dr. B was relentlessly pursued by both the Texas Medical Board and the FDA. Through the Justice Department, the FDA convened a half dozen (one at a time, over years) grand juries attempting to get an indictment on Dr. B. All resulted in no indictment. After a series of strange events (see the movie), the Feds finally got an indictment. This allowed them to seize all of the Dr.'s medical records on all of his patients, as well as research files. After two trials (number one was a mistrial, hung jury), Dr. B was cleared of all 75 charges. None of the charges involved the efficacy of antineoplastons; for some reason, the FDA was not claiming that the good doctor was a quack. Now, one would think after all that, the FDA would cease and desist; that was not to be. See the movie.

The harassment continued and the reason became clear. While the FDA was discrediting Dr. B over all those years, it also was working with a drug company to steal the patents regarding antineoplastons. Eventually the FDA applied for and received eleven (might be one off) patents on antineoplastons, even though Dr. B held patents on those same substances. [One of the antineoplastons couldn't be patented according to Dr. B's attorneys, but it was by the FDA.]

The story doesn't end there. The FDA, according to Dr. B, is using incorrect protocols (dosages, intervals of treatment, types of cancer, etc.) in their clinical trials of the antineoplastons. The result will be unsuccessful trials. You can see where this is going.

There is much, much more to this tale. The movie is almost two hours, and a few times gets a bit tedious; but if you hang in there with it, I think you'll agree that it's a highly explosive illustration of Fascism in America. The documentation alone of the whole shabby affair is worth the watch. The Government-Mega Corporate Complex's control of the cancer industry is laid bare for all to see. It's all about the money.