Who Hijacked Our Country

Thursday, May 13, 2010

America Menaced by Drugs!

Prescription drugs, that is.

Check out this article by Denis Leary — “America’s Gone Nuts On Prescription Drugs.” It’s humorously written, but he makes some valid points. Scary points.

What in the fuck have we turned into? He opens his article with:

“If you're sitting at the blackjack table wearing an adult diaper with a face the size of Elvis's ass and a four-hour erection, maybe it's time to cut down on the pills.”

I can’t believe these ridiculous “Ask Your Doctor About…” TV commercials have actually brainwashed millions of people. People actually watch those ads, with all the dire warnings about scary side effects, and then think “Cool. I’m gonna ask my doctor about that.”

I like what he said about side effects:

“Nausea, anal leakage, dysplasia, and temporary blindness are not just great name choices for late 80's heavy metal bands — they are but a few of the little prices Americans are willing to pay each time they swallow a magic pill designed to help them lose weight, gain confidence, stop shaking or become the proud owners of medically-induced erections.”

There was an Opus cartoon a few years ago that was all about taking one drug, then taking another drug to get rid of the side effects of the first drug, then taking a third drug to squelch the side effects of the second drug, then you need a fourth drug to counteract…

Now obviously there’s been some incredible medical research that’s helped millions of people. But if you have a serious illness, a late-night TV commercial is probably not offering the help you need.

I won’t pretend to know what it’s like to be clinically depressed, but I think I’d rather stay depressed than be stuck with a bunch of permanent uncontrollable involuntary movements. Or as Denis Leary puts it:

“How depressed do you have to be when in order to feel better, you're walking around like a naked grape with a head full of bells and a sudden desire to punch a stranger in the throat?”

And as one of the commenters at the end of this article points out, these hideous side effects are possible if you take just that one drug. If somebody is already on certain medications and/or has gotten sucked in by several of those “Ask Your Doctor About…” commercials, what sort of mutational unthinkable side effects…

Don’t even go there.

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Anonymous kate said...

As long as doctors get kick backs from the pharm companies, and as long as people believe there is a pill for everything, and they should never suffer any pang, pain, or inconvienence, we will continue to be an over medicated nation. I work in the medical profession, and it is not unusual for some elders to be on as many as 15-25 different medications.

People have to accept that there is not a cure or treatment for everything. Every single drug put into the body has side effects, whether it's over the counter drugs, or potent antipsychotics, cardiac, or pain medications. These are all powerful chemicals, and although some certainly are life saving and some add to the quality of life, many have side effects that are worse than the symptoms they are used to treat.

I get so angry when I see some doctors prescribe drugs they know little about, or just to passify the patient. They need to take some time to discuss healthier living styles, and we, the consumers need to be much better aware of how these drugs affect our bodies, and take a more active role in keeping ourselves healthy.

Sorry this is so long, but this is a pet peeve of mine.

May 13, 2010 at 11:26 AM  
Blogger Dave Dubya said...

And this brings us back to the safest natural substance, cannabis. There's a reason why the booze, tobacco and pharma corporations pay politicians to keep it illegal. The corporatocracy likes having a nation of drunks, hacking smokers, prozac zombies, and oxy-morons like Rush. It's all so good for business.

Don't take my word for it. Just ask Willie Nelson.

May 13, 2010 at 12:14 PM  
Anonymous Jess said...

I much prefer the natural occuring things than I do the prescription drug stuff. Need help sleeping, Melatonin and Valerian root. Need help with mild stomach ailments, peppermint tea works wonders. Me personally, I think those, ask your doctor for ads, need to be taken off air. Big pharma reps are always giving away the freebies to get their product in the market. I think it is why we have seen the use go up on certain meds like Lipitor off the top of my head. Proper diet for the most part cuts down on cholesterol doesn't it?

May 13, 2010 at 3:29 PM  
Blogger J. Marquis said...

I'm gonna play devil's advocate here and defend the depression drugs. I probably wouldn't be alive today if it weren't for my medication.

May 13, 2010 at 6:04 PM  
Blogger Dave Dubya said...

It's true countless people, myself included, owe their lives or health to appropriately and therapeutically administered medicine. However drugs are a double-edged sword. The mass marketing of psychotropic drugs does similar damage as mass marketing of tobacco. It easily puts the wrong idea in consumers' heads that they NEED it. Too often the safety of the drug was not determined beforehand. People died.

Just imagine how much Big Pharma profits jumped when they were finally allowed to advertise prescription drugs. No other industry has a higher profit margine.

May 13, 2010 at 8:05 PM  
Anonymous kate said...

J. Marquis, there is no need to defend the antidepressive medications you take. There are prescribed medications that are truly life saving and which greatly enhance a person's quality of life. It is the "pill for everything" mentality, the indiscriminate use of drugs, the attitude of some physicians to give a pill to shut the patient up, and the huge exchange of money and favors that takes place in the drug industry, all of which needs to be majorly curtailed.

May 14, 2010 at 3:51 AM  
Anonymous Jess said...

J. Marquis, I think we are talking about the whole, you have a paper cut, ask you doctor for paper cut medicicne type things. Don't think you have to defend your or anyone elses use of Anti depressants ever please. Anti depressants are life saving in some instances. That is not the "pill" we are talking about. At least I don't think it is. I think it is the pervasion of medication in society, kid acting up a little, oh get them on kid acting up med for a while he or she will be okay. All because big Phrma has said, kid acting up medication is good for all that ails you. the money they spend trying to influence us as consumers and congress, would be put to better use in research and development is just my opinion.

May 14, 2010 at 9:17 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Kate: You're right, I think it's that "a pill for everything" mindset; and every one of those pills has side effects.

Dave: Let's hear it for cannabis. I think Big Pharm wants to phase out as many natural/herbal medicines as they can. Not just pot, but legal herbs -- comfrey, goldenseal and stevia are all much harder to find. When that CAFTA treaty got passed in 2005, there were all kinds of rumors about Big Pharm's plans to gradually get vitamin and herbal supplements taken off the shelves. I hope it's just an urban legend, but who knows.

Jess: Valerian is great. I don't have trouble sleeping very often, but when I do, a few Valerian capsules will do it. It wears off after about 3 hours; there's no grogginess or drowsiness or anything.

I agree those "ask your doctor about..." ads should be taken off the air. But with the money and clout that Big Pharm has, that won't happen.

J: Those medications certainly have a purpose. Denis Leary's article, and my post, were only talking about the general "there's a pill for everything" mindset, and those ubiquitous TV ads that try to sell every drug imaginable to the public.

Dave, Kate and Jess all make excellent points in their comments below yours.

May 14, 2010 at 9:39 AM  
Blogger Randal Graves said...

This only proves that socialist ObamaCare will have us all so medicated, we'll be willing to do anything for the Politburo!

May 14, 2010 at 10:02 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Comrade Randal: Da!

May 14, 2010 at 3:44 PM  
Blogger TomCat said...

I love it when the networks screw up and place one of those "Ask your doctor about..." ads immediately before or after a Lawyer's ad seeking people injured or family of people killed by the same drug.

May 15, 2010 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

TomCat: Yup, I get a kick out of that too, with these shrill TV pitchmen tripping over each other.

May 15, 2010 at 1:40 PM  

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