December 15, 2008

A Prescription for Conspiracy

Racketeering in Medicine: The Suppression of Alternatives by James P. Carter, M.D., Dr. P.H. (Hampton Roads Publishing, 1992, ISBN: 1-878901-32-X)

This book was written by: James P. Carter, M.D., Dr. P.H., who has served as the chairman of the national advisory committee of Meharry Medical College’s Kraft-General Foods Nutrition Center and as an editorial advisor to Prevention magazine.

What is in this book: Dr. Carter’s accusations that Organized Medicine, a “wide-ranging mosaic of special-interest groups who wield undue influence for maximizing profit and perpetuating the status quo in medical fields,” has “orchestrated financially-motivated cover-ups” for such nefarious purposes as “controlling the treatment of cancer”(p.xvii). For example, the practice of clinical ecology is ignored “simply because it does not abide by the strict definitions of scientific medicine, which confine diagnoses to that which can be scientifically explained”(p.64). Dr. Carter feels that “scientific proof of effectiveness is not always required—anecdotal evidence has been accepted as valid criteria”(p.7) for some therapies, like bypass surgery, so Organized Medicine is doing humanity a disservice by ignoring the medical breakthroughs that are being made daily in private hospitals, home laboratories, garages, toolsheds, bathroom stalls, and the back of a 1987 Ford Econoline van.

What is not in this book: Whitewashing. Dr. Carter makes no effort to spare us from the ugly truth, lifting the veil of goodwill used to cloak such monstrous abominations the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, and the American Lung Association. “Could it be that these charities are working on behalf of Organized Med on the higher up, administrative level? Some observers consider the major charities to be thinly-disguised lobbying fronts for Organized Med”(p.212). Dr. Carter also calls out the American Medical Association’s Coordinating Conference on Health Information, “a secretive, covert organization which operated with other similar groups, intertwining itself throughout a network with no public scrutiny”(p.14). And he brings to light the existence of a strike force that was formed “without the approval of congress and without the knowledge or the consent of the public,” although “it is a reasonable assumption that policy decisions were made by senior government officials in various agencies, and those policies were carried out through the covert actions of the strike force”(p.33).

Would you recommend this book to John McEnroe? Possibly, but this book is mostly about racketeering, and not much about racqueteering.

Would you recommend this book to Ecuadorean rapper and singer Girardo? No, Dr. Carter would like to see the corrupt organizations suppressing medical advancements brought to court under the RICO act. He is not interested in seeing the Rico (Suave) act.

What was interesting about this book? This is one of the few books with the courage to publicly defend the Church of Scientology and the good work it has been doing through its Citizens Commission on Human Rights, including its attempts to ban the prescription drug Prozac. Dr. Carter agrees with the statement that Scientologists are “earnest, enterprising, public-spirited and committed people,” and also with the statement that Scientologists “are sincere, dedicated human beings, who are striving hard for the betterment of all”(p.191). “Bravo to them,” says Dr. Carter, “for taking on legal drug merchants”(p.191).

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