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Carolanne Wright – Big Pharma and Medical Industry Dole Out $3.5 Billion in Kickbacks to Doctors and Teaching Hospitals

“It is scary how many similarities there are between this [pharmaceutical] industry and the mob.” ~ former Vice-President of Pfizer pharmaceuticals. The U.S. federal government has released disturbing data about the profiteering nature behind our medical system. Namely, a staggering 4.4 million payments made to physicians and teaching hospitals by medical device and pharmaceutical companies. According to officials from Centers for Medicare …

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Nick Barrickman – US pharmaceutical industry price-gouging and the case of Martin Shkreli

The decision by biotechnology firm Turing Pharmaceuticals to raise the cost of Pyrimethamine (or Daraprim), a drug used to treat toxoplasmosis, from $13.50 to more than $750 per pill, has aroused shock and outrage. Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease to which people with weakened immune systems from of diseases such as AIDS, as well as certain cancer patients, as well …

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JUDD LEGUM – After Getting Shamed For 5000% Hike, ‘Most Hated Man In America’ Will Lower Drug Price

Martin Shkreli, the controversial pharmaceutical CEO and former hedge fund manager, announced that he would reduce the price of the drug Daraprim to “a point that is more affordable.” Shkreli has been the subject of unrelenting criticism since he implemented a 5000% increase in the price of the drug — from $13.50 per pill to $750 — which is used …

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MARY ELIZABETH WILLIAMS – “Martin Shkreli is the Donald Trump of drug development”: Why even a biotech exec agrees Turing’s pill price-gouging is “even skeevier than you think”

“Martin Shkreli is the Donald Trump of drug development,” my friend Frank tells me. “He’s a hedge fund manager who gives hedge fund managers a bad name.” Frank — a chief scientific officer at a biotech company (and whose name has been changed to protect his and his family’s privacy) — is talking to me Tuesday morning, en route to …

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Michael Welton – The Russell-Einstein Peace Manifesto of 1955

It is worth revisiting the famous Russell-Einstein Peace Manifesto. Offered to the world in 1955 in the icy winds of Cold War One, two of the greatest humanists and scientific minds of the twentieth century, Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) and Albert Einstein (1879-1955), proposed a stark question to humankind. “Shall we put an end to the human race; or shall mankind …

Exploiting Social Issues for Militarism and Imperialism – Glenn Greenwald

Over the weekend, the British surveillance agency GCHQ — the most extremist and invasive in the West — bathed its futuristic headquarters with rainbow-colored lights “as a symbol of the intelligence agency’s commitment to diversity” and to express solidarity with “International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia.” GCHQ’s public affairs office proudly distributed the above photograph to media outlets. Referring to Alan Turing, the …

Ex-Machina

The Cognitive Short-Circuit of “Artificial Consciousness” – Bernardo Kastrup

The new sci-fi film Ex_Machina has been teasing back into the cultural dialogue dreams of artificial consciousness: the idea that we humans, through the Faustian power of technology, can birth into being mechanisms capable of inner life, subjectivity and affection. Since these dreams are entirely based on implicit assumptions about the nature of consciousness and reality at large, I thought a few …