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LA Times lies about Sen. Orrin Hatch and DSHEA

On January 16, 2018, LA Times columnist Michael Hiltzik wrote a column “Orrin Hatch is leaving the Senate, but his deadliest law will live on” disparaging this Utah Senator who has served this country honorably for 40 years by falsely describing the DSHEA law that was written by bipartisan members of Congress Orrin Hatch (R) and Tom Harkin (D), approved by Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton on October 25, 1994.

photo credit – Gatis Gribusts via Flickr

Mr. Hiltzik states in his article:

a) The act all but eliminated government regulation of the dietary and herbal supplements industry. (which is a false statement)

b) The Food and Drug Administration could not block a supplement from reaching market.  (another false statement)

c) DSHEA, as it was written and as it was intended, facilitates the legal marketing of quackery.

Hiltzik ends his article by claiming that Sen. Hatch was bought off by the health food industry and that other congressmen and senators would still be available after Sen. Hatch retires, to receive ongoing payoffs from this industry.

To put this into perspective, Sen. Hatch was protecting the health food industry from attack and shutdown by the FDA in the early 90’s, which was trying to define all health foods as new drugs, and trying to force the manufacturers to go through the new drug approval process, costing tens of millions of dollars, which would have effectively driven health foods from the market.  The DSHEA does in fact give the FDA a reasonable framework to regulate health foods and supplements, without allowing them to try and classify these foods as drugs unless the maufacturer attempts to make such claims.  Read the details of the DSHEA here.

24 years after the passage of this law by Congress, those interests that would have gained from the demise of the health food industry – Big Pharma – and their friends in FDA and shills for the drug companies such as Mr. Hiltzik, are still upset that Senators Hatch and Harkin, the U.S. Congress, and Pres. Bill Clinton protected your rights to be able to purchase vitamins and supplements without fear that the FDA would shut down this industry in favor of their friends in the Pharmaceutical Industry.

Seagate has written extensively about this lopsided relationship of Big Pharma, the FDA, and their attempt to take away your right to purchase natural products that may actually help to keep you healthy and avoid the use their prescription drugs:

Pharmaceutical companies and their touts have their fingers in your wallet

Search engine for pharmaceutical company payoffs to doctors and hospitals

Nominee for New FDA Commissioner tied to Big Pharma

Who is really in charge of your FDA?

FDA’s revolving door – why you eat GMO’s

New FDA commissioner approved – what it means to health foods

The pharmaceutical industry has spent over $2.3 billion during the last 10 years to lobby Congress, according to the NY Times. They are by far the highest-paying lobbying group, followed by the insurance industry in second place. Big Pharma is trying to protect their $445 billion in sales in the U.S.  When you see your prescription drug prices and your insurance premiums jumping by 20% each year, it was not by accident.  Over 100,000 people die each year from prescription drugs. Over the past 27 years — the complete time frame that the data has been available —  there have been 0 deaths as a result of vitamins and over 3 million deaths related to prescription drug use.  Do the math, add up the dollars involved, and then ask Mr. Hiltzik why he is spending his energy attacking Senator Hatch and the health food industry.

Okay, very upsetting. Usually a good time to go diving along a warm-water reef and forget about big pharma, the FDA and their shills. The photo below is of a healthy reef along the Cayman Islands.

Grunts hiding in Cayman coral

 

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