FDA Spies On Whistleblowers to Protect Big Pharma

Government Agency Takes Screenshots of Whistleblowers’ Computers EVERY 7 SECONDS for YEARS

We reported in 2012:

When one of the most respected radiologists in America – the former head of the radiology department at Yale University – attempted to blow the whistle on the fact that the FDA had approved a medical device manufactured by General Electric because it put out massive amounts of radiation, the FDA installed spyware to record his private emails and surfing activities (including installing cameras to snap pictures of his screen), and then used the information to smear him and other whistleblowers.

Democracy Now did a good segment on this scandal in 2012:

As did Fox News this week:

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  • colinjames71

    Go Fox News! Motivated out of zeal to demonize regulatory agencies more than protecting human health most likely, and I may be wrong, or half wrong, but a good piece is a good piece. Not that the FDA doesn’t deserve it. I’m trying to think of an alternate satirical initial replacement. Like Fluoride Dumping Alliance. Fatal Dose Administration. Fraudulent Drug Approvers. Fukushima Denial Assistant. Fellowship of Derelict A-holes. Findings Don’t Apply. Fabricated Data Agency… Yeah that’s the one. Best one I can think of right now anyway. ANYWAYS, Spys ‘R Us strikes again. Nothing, nobody is off limits in this place called the Land of the Free. And while bagging on the FDA it’s clear that, like many and probably all government entities, there are good and honest and honorable people involved, but the system is corrupt, heavy handed, retaliatory, and captured by the big money interest to the detriment of us all.

    • TJHillgardner

      That would explain the two year delay in picking up the story. Two years ago they did not perceive a need to spin this old news.

    • Totally Amazed

      Fund Driven Administrating

  • gozounlimited

    Big pharma’s ‘satanic’ plot is genocide…..
    Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has accused a group of multinational pharmaceutical companies active inSouth Africa of conspiring against the state, the people of South Africa and the populations of developing countries – and of planning what amounts to mass murder…… http://mg.co.za/article/2014-01-16-motsoaledi-big-pharmas-satanic-plot-is-genocide

    • gozounlimited

      How Big Pharma Caused an AIDS Genocide


      • gozounlimited

        A chemical warfare has been declared on us. The battlefields are our homes, the grocery stores, the pharmacies. This is genocide, and we are the intended victims. As early as 1974 food became the top weapon of the United Nations in a stealthy war waged on the citizens of the world.

        We’ve reached the point that any person with critical thinking skills can no longer deny that we are being deliberately poisoned. Nearly everything that is reasonably priced to eat or drink is actually toxic. The glowing health claims and the stamps of approval from the EPA, the FDA, and USDA, are fraudulent smoke and mirrors – people are actually being deceived into spending money to purchase the substances that will lead to disease and demise. http://www.theorganicprepper.ca/the-great-american-genocide-07032013

        • dale ruff

          Any person with critical thinking skills knows that killing off your customers is not an option for industry; the goal is long term treatment.

          To compare this to genocide is to minimize what real genocide is.

          Big Business needs customers. They have no reason to kill off paying customers, but some people get a charge of moral outrage by making this charge, which is absurd.

          Why would a drug company try to kill off its customers? That is crazy.

          • Eli

            EZ answer: NEW customers are born every day, and/or imported as NEW CONSUMERS!

          • dale ruff

            Dead people breed?

          • colinjames71

            Well, they vote, at least in Chicago, would be the answer a rabid rightwinger would say );>)

          • dale ruff

            I get your point, but just for the record:

            Wisconsin is not Chicago, but Republicans have claimed that voter fraud is widespread, so it will serve to make a point:

            “A nonpartisan study on voter fraud in Wisconsin after the 2004 election found just seven ineligible votes—all of which were cast by ex-felons who were ineligible to vote despite being released from prison—out of 3 million ballots cast.”

            This is the kind of “fraud” that has rationalized dozens of new state laws making voting more difficult, with a tendency to suppress the vote.

            There is a good reason voter fraud is so rare: Voter fraud is a felony that carries a federal sentence of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

            How many think it is worth it to cast an illegal vote with that kind of penalty?

            A person who tries to vote, based on a dead person (when a person dies, their registration is not automatically cancelled), faces, for ONE VOTE, 5 yrs in prison. People that stupid do not vote (which is not to say that many who do vote are NOT stupid).

            The problem, as all studies have overwhelmingly demonstrated, is not voter fraud, but it is electoral fraud, including the 5-4 vote by the SC in 2000 which stopped the recount and gave the Presidency to Bush.

            The Public Policy Poll in 2012 found that “49% of GOP voters nationally say they think that ACORN stole the election for President Obama. We found that 52% of Republicans thought that ACORN stole the 2008 election for Obama,”

            Of course, Acorn closed its doors in 2010, after being demonized and defunded, but why let facts get in the way of a good excuse for losing?

            “During the week of October 6-15, CNN aired 54 segments mentioning allegations that ACORN submitted allegedly false or duplicate voter-registration applications in a number of states.

            Not one U.S. attorney would find any evidence of an illegal vote cast and counted because of registration by ACORN and those working for it.” Huffpost

            So a non-existent organization, never found guilty of voter fraud, stole the election, and the dead are still voting in Chicago! We are dealing with people living in fact-free bubble.

          • colinjames71

            That was a tongue-in-cheek comment and I guess you got that… and believe me I’m well-aware of the voter-fraud canard R’s use (with the oh-so-generous help of my least favorite organization, ALEC) to push thru draconian voter-ID-cum-neo-Jim Crow anti-democratic voting restrictions of all kinds, but thanks for posting that, it’s an import issue.

          • colinjames71
          • gozounlimited

            JPMorgan Chase is in the business of betting on death:

            JPMorgan Chase is betting that people die sooner rather than later. That is because JPMorgan will need to pay the insurance companies if they have to payout more money than they had actuarially predicted because the people they cover are living longer.

            The bottom line: JP Morgan is looking to profit from early deaths. The longer the insured individuals live beyond an agreed upon average age, the more the bank must reimburse the insurance companies.Wall Street on Parade also speculates that JPMorgan may have actually profited from the suicides of their employees. That is because the bank has followed the trend of many companies in taking out life insurance policies on employees that are payable to the corporation.


          • dale ruff

            Insurance may benefit from deaths from those who sell consumer goods, from electronics to cars to food, lose customers and profits.

            Big PHarma wants you to live a long time, sick so you need their drugs.

    • dale ruff

      Big Pharma, like any Big Business, needs as many consumers as possible. Therefore, it would be absurd to kill off paying patients. Instead, they seek to eliminate prevention and cures and get everybody on long term treatment as the best business model.

      The plot is not genocide, which would kill of paying customers but a population which hangs on with lifelong treatment. Why would an industry want to kill of its customers. That is absurd.

      They just want sick customers who hang on with daily pills to keep them hanging.

  • toolate

    Issa, Grassley Report on FDA Employee Monitoring Finds Agency Still Lacks Adequate Whistleblower Protections

    February 26, 2014

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    WASHINGTON – Today, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, released a joint report on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s highly-invasive surveillance program that monitored employees who contacted Congress and the media with concerns about FDA’s medical device approval process.

    In April 2010, the FDA initiated a surveillance program of unprecedented scope to monitor employees in the Center for Devices and Radiological Health. The program allowed FDA managers to read communications between FDA employees and Congress, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC), and their personal attorneys. The Joint Committee report, entitled “Limitless Surveillance at the FDA: Protecting the Rights of Federal Whistleblowers,” found the FDA acted without regard for employees’ whistleblower rights, which protect their communications to Congress and OSC. The joint report also found that FDA conducted the program without adequate guidelines in place and made no effort to limit the scope of the program to exclude protected communications.

    The Oversight Committee will hold a hearing on the FDA’s surveillance today at 10:00 a.m. in 2154 Rayburn House Office Building.

    Key Findings:

    Insufficient authorization and guidelines. The monitoring was implemented with insufficient written authorization, no policy in place and no legal guidance given to the contractors conducting the monitoring. As a result, FDA captured communications that are protected by law, including communications with Congress, the media, and watchdog groups like Project on Government Oversight.

    Unlawful capturing of protected communications. Because no formal monitoring policy was in place, FDA managers did not understand the legal limits of employee monitoring. The FDA’s surveillance was not lawful, to the extent that it monitored communications with Congress and the Office of Special Counsel. Federal law protects disclosures to OSC and Congress.

    Lack of explanation for capture of future communications. Instead of looking back at previous communications using available tools, the FDA captured real-time communications of current and future communications. When interviewed, FDA managers and IT professionals failed to explain clearly how the rationale offered to justify the monitoring (investigating a past leak) was consistent with the method used (monitoring current activity).

    New policies do not offer sufficient whistleblower protections. In September 2013, the FDA issued interim policies that require written authorization prior to initiating employee monitoring. However, the policies do not offer sufficient protection for whistleblowers concerned about retaliation from agency officials.

  • farmerjean

    One of my friends just died horribly suffering agonizing pain with the disintegrating metal on metal hip implants they approved. Good job FDA, want to see my computer?.

  • Totally Amazed

    They were taken out of Government regulation in 1993, they have done far worse than spy, but yet now it’s a problem? The government was supposed to regulate things to see our civil liberties were protected and agencies like this could not be bought. Guess the irony showed it’s ugly head again when Wall Street was deregulated and gas price speculation caused the worse gas hike in history. Big businesses are making fortunes, working class people (largest majority) are being played as pawns and being charged for a game they cannot possibly win