(AMERICA) OPED: A new HBO documentary called ‘The Crime of the Century’ lays bare how firms like Purdue used bribery, dodgy marketing, and shady political deals to make fortunes by getting millions hooked on super-strong painkillers #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – May.17: Perhaps it might take the form of slick music videos and glossy magazine ads promising an ‘end to pain’. Certainly, they would minimise the negative effects of their drugs on your life, your future, and your loved ones. If questioned about what they were doing, we can imagine them blaming those who use their drugs, not themselves for providing them:

AMERICA: ‘A glorified drug cartel whose dealers wore lab coats, suits and ties’: how Big Pharma made Americans addicted to opioids’ …..What would it look like if an illegal international drug cartel were allowed to advertise?

14 May, 2021 20:37 

‘A glorified drug cartel whose dealers wore lab coats, suits and ties’: how Big Pharma made Americans addicted to opioids

By Ashley Frawley, Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Social Policy at Swansea University and the author of Semiotics of Happiness: Rhetorical Beginnings of a Public Problem. Follow her on Twitter @Ashleyafrawley

It sounds mad – madder still that anyone would believe them – but this is exactly what has been allowed to happen with large pharmaceutical companies and their marketing of highly addictive opioid drugs.

At least, this is the argument put forward in a new two-part HBO documentary series released this week entitled, ‘The Crime of the Century’. Across its nearly four-hour run-time, director Alex Gibney lays bare the bribery, underhanded marketing tactics, and shady political dealings that enabled the devastating overproduction and over-distribution of synthetic opiates. In devastating detail, the documentary portrays American pharmaceutical companies and the doctors who recklessly doled out prescriptions as elements of a glorified drug cartel – dealers in lab coats, suits and ties.

‘Completely inappropriate’: Top scientists denounce Big Pharma for implying annual Covid booster shots are crucial

‘Completely inappropriate’: Top scientists denounce Big Pharma for implying annual Covid booster shots are crucial

Systematically overselling the benefits of synthetic opioids and downplaying the risk of addiction, the documentary traces how drug companies are driven to pursue ever stronger and more exotic medications as patents on old treatments run out and profits dry up. In many ways, it traverses territory that is already well known, but is no less useful for highlighting in shocking detail just how much these companies have become a major risk to public health.

This is particularly true in their penchant for ‘discovering’ and treating ever more chronic conditions. While the efficacy of opioids for treatment of acute pain and end-of-life care has been well known, there is little incentive to develop and provide drugs solely for such patients, who tend to be few and far between and whose needs are often short-term. No, the real money is in long-term use in greater numbers. And this is where the dangers of pushing these drugs on patients with any kind of pain became increasingly clear.

Through heart-rending stories of suffering and loss, Gibney adeptly shows how a deadly cocktail of business incentives to push for over-prescription at escalating doses, inherent addictiveness, and, in some cases, communities facing economic despair, combined to produce the ‘perfect storm’ that became the opioid crisis.

In one story, a former heroin addict details his experience being used as a human guinea pig, prescribed a daily dose of pills equivalent to 200 hits of heroin. In another, a victim whose family described her as living a happy, functional life using nothing more than Tylenol was prescribed high doses of a range of opioids and muscle relaxants that regularly rendered her unconscious. One day her husband found her dead next to a phone that she’d attempted to use to call for help.

What could possibly fuel such enormous failure of caution? The obvious answer is greed and profit. Indeed, the meagre payouts and settlements companies like Purdue Pharma were ordered to pay over the years paled in comparison to the eye-watering profits they made misrepresenting their drugs. But the story is much deeper. The ‘opioid epidemic’ itself was preceded by claims that most Americans were actually being undertreated. What is more, they were being left callously to suffer in an ‘epidemic of pain’. Throughout the series, company representatives and even policymakers refer over and over to a ‘growing epidemic’ of pain suffered by millions.

This is what prepared the ground for the epidemic of over-prescription, permitting claims detailed in the documentary like “chronic pain patients can’t be addicts”, and the development of pseudoscientific terms like ‘pseudoaddiction’. The latter reflects an attempt to assuage the growing fears of prescribing physicians that the person before them is indeed becoming addicted to the drugs they were being prescribed. No, they only appear this way because they are in so much pain. You must help them. Prescribe more:

And prescribe more they did and release the power within as scientists develop method to enhance body’s own painkillers in major breakthrough

While it is easy to blame this situation on the greed of companies like Purdue Pharma and the owning Sackler family that lived luxuriously in its shadow, they would not have found such a ready market had they not been able to feed and exploit a culture with a preexisting aversion to pain. Indeed, many of the physicians and sales executives responsible for pushing large doses of highly addictive pain medications justified their actions with their belief that a life with pain was a life not worth living. They had convinced themselves that any pain was worse than death.

Supplanting everything that once made life meaningful, the pursuit of health and even mental health have become ultimate goals. The notion that one might tolerate pain, whether physical or psychic, is seen as beyond the pale. It is no longer, ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.’ Any pain or negative experience is seen as intensely damaging to the human psyche.

In a life without meaning, any pain becomes unbearable. We all become patients in waiting. Easy targets for these drug dealers in suits and ties.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT. OR Ace News Services

#AceNewsDesk report …….Published: May.17: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#america, #big-pharmas, #drug-cartel, #oped, #youtube

(WASHINGTON) ICE REPORT: The Department of State’s Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program (TOCRP): Announces a $5-million reward for information or arrest/conviction to combat organised crime #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Apr.17: Flores-Silva was charged in a federal indictment on August 13, 2020, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia:

$5M reward offered for information leading to arrest, conviction of major Mexican drug cartel member: ‘Audias Flores Silva (Flores Silva), following multiple investigations by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and other U.S. agencies. These actions are part of a whole of government approach to combating drug trafficking and transnational organised crime globally and in Mexico’

‘The indictment charges Flores-Silva with conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, and one kilogram or more of heroin for importation into the United States, as well as carrying, using and possessing a firearm in relation to a drug offence

In 2002: Flores Silva was indicted in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina for engaging in narcotics trafficking activity. He was later convicted and served a five-year sentence before being released and returning to Mexico:

In 2016: Mexican authorities arrested Flores Silva after being accused of orchestrating an April 2015, ambush against Mexican police officers in Soyatlan, Jalisco. Flores Silva was later released from Mexican prison after fighting his charges in Mexican courts:

This reward is offered under the Department of State’s Narcotics Rewards Program (NRP). More than 75 transnational criminals and major narcotics traffickers have been brought to justice under the NRP and the Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program (TOCRP) since the NRP’s inception in 1986.

HSI special agents across the United States and around the world remain on the front lines of the global fight to identify, disrupt and dismantle cartels and other transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) engaged in illegal narcotics smuggling activities. HSI utilizes its expansive statutory authorities, undercover capabilities, border search authority, robust domestic and international footprint, criminal analysis capabilities and strong interagency partnerships at home and abroad to launch complex criminal investigations designed to expose and take down sophisticated networks that produce, transport, broker, finance, sell and distribute illegal drugs. These efforts have resulted in some of the most significant arrests of traffickers and seizures of illicit drugs across the globe.

HSI is a directorate and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel and finance move. HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 7,100 Special Agents assigned to 220 cities throughout the United States, and 80 overseas locations in 53 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.

Tipsters who want to report suspicious or criminal activity can contact the ICE Tip Line by:

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Apr.17: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#drug-cartel, #ice, #mexican, #tocrp, #washington

` Mexican Government States Vigilante Groups Have Until May 10 To Register Their Guns ‘

#AceWorldNews – MEXICO CITY  – May 10 – The Mexican government says vigilante groups in the western state of Michoacan will have until May 10 to register their guns and decide whether to join the army’s “rural defence corps.”

The government had made little headway in a plan announced in January to put the estimated 20,000-strong vigilante force in the western state of Michoacan under the control of the army.

Knights Templer - MEXICO

But the government commission for Michoacan said late Monday it had agreed to extend the deadline for joining the rural defense corps, a little-used, century-old body that armed farm workers to fight bandits and uprisings in the countryside.

The heavily armed “self-defense” groups have posed a thorny problem for the government. While they have earned popularity by driving the vicious Knights Templar drug cartel out of many parts of Michoacan, some of the vigilantes themselves have been accused of looting and killing.

Dozens of others remain in jail on charges of carrying weapons such as assault rifles that are prohibited for civilian use.

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#associated-press, #drug-cartel, #knights-templar, #knights-templar-cartel, #mexico, #mexico-city, #michoacan, #share-or-tweet-acenewsservices-with-ans2014, #vigilante