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Nose rape?

I’ve written a couple of times here about TV commercials that drive me crazy or just perplex me (that post on what the Cialis bathtubs are all about continues to get a couple of views a week even though it was over a year ago). In general, though, I don’t get too exercised about TV…

Like tens of millions (probably hundreds of millions globally) I watched the Superbowl on Sunday. With such an audience, ad time is notoriously and extravagantly expensive and some ads are only run once, at that venue (e.g., the famous Apple “1984″ ad). For some people the ads are as much an attraction as the game,…

The BPA cabal gets a letter

Here is an interesting follow-up to the leaked meeting minutes of the BPA cabal. Henry Waxman’s Energy and Commerce Committee has a Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. As a result of reports in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and the Washington Post about the meeting minutes of BPA spinmeisters (the full contents of the memo were posted…

We’ve had occasion to write about the endocrine noise-maker bisphenol-A (BPA) quote a few times (see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here for starters). The word about BPA has gotten to consumers and they have fled BPA-containing products like they are swine flu carriers. Meanwhile the scientific evidence is piling up and what…

It is clear that if you want to get a so-so paper published in a top tier journal, the best way to do it is to write about a breaking medical news event and get there first. We saw this with avian influenza and SARS and now it’s being repeated with swine flu. The Scientist…

Pills, profits and medical schools

When I was in medical school it was common to get gifts from drug companies. Since many of us had very little money, the gifts were welcome. One company gave me a Littman stethoscope, at the time, the most advanced stethoscope around. The same model costs about $100 now. I was glad to get it,…

Whenever you read about some high profile drug company trial where the smoking gun is some incriminating email, do you shake your head and wonder, “How could they have written that in an email?” There are two ways for a drug company to protect itself from being nailed by these kinds of emails. The best…

Disease mongering

The National Post recently had an interesting article on “disease mongering,” an article I largely agreed with. The major point was that fostering a fear of “germs,” promoting the idea that following medical advice, especially advice involving “taking your pills,” and the very definition of who is diseased and who is not has a suspiciously…

Thanks to a local health officer in Colorado I get word that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has begun an investigation of claims made by my favorite infomercial quacks, the Kinoki Foot Bad folks (see my howl of pain in the post The TV ad that DRIVES ME CRAZY). Here’s some of the…

Scaffold spam

Like most computer users I hate spam. But I’ve gradually gotten used to it. You can get used to anything, I was once told, even a stone in your shoe. Apparently I’ve gotten used to more than I thought. In a terrific piece in New York Press, Lindsay Beyerstein (aka Majikthise) calls our attention to…