The story behind Will Smith's recent Oscar performance for Pfizer
Public Relations Shapes the Practice of Medicine
If you would like to know more about me, the mission of this substack, or how you can contribute, please read this introductory post.
Many of you have seen the sunglasses meme. It comes from a 1988 Movie called “They Live.” It revolves around Aliens covertly taking the world over and occupying positions of influence. The main character obtains glasses that allow him to see their true forms, and he goes on a quest to disable their cloaking technology.
This meme is used to illustrate the experience of “Red Pilled” individuals seeing society through a broader lens and not getting sucked into many of the scams the general populace is trapped in.
After I learned about public relations, I began to see how many things around us were nothing more than PR campaigns someone paid for to achieve a stated end. Many industries are based upon developing a proven formula and using it over and over and PR is no different. My hope in writing this Substack is to help you develop those magic glasses so you can also see a broader perspective of the world around us.
I’ve also been requested to write shorter easier to share articles (the next more detailed one about the entire population control business should be out this weekend). Today’s article is an abridged version of my previous article laying out the PR industry and how it works in a manner remarkably similar to selling pharmaceuticals and war.
Since publishing that article, I came across a remarkable study that summarizes many of the key points within it. The difference between those wearing and not wearing the glasses appears to be greater than I have ever seen before in my lifetime.
A recently circulating meme summed up Sunday’s events quite well:
What is less appreciated is how common and typical these types of PR campaigns are.
Because Pfizer has produced so many drugs (often being convicted for criminal activity in the process), they have every step in the marketing process well laid out.
When you initially want to sell a medication, the first step is to bring awareness to the disease so people will want to buy the medication (this is termed disease branding). For example, in my previous article, I discussed how many altruistic appearing patient “support groups” are actually just pharmaceutically funded organizations that exist to promote pharmaceuticals and bring awareness to the disease (and thus often promote things that harm the patients with the disease).
Many of the things we currently regard as serious diseases were previously not viewed as such, and frequently (for example with depression) before being viewed as something you had to manage with drugs, had much better outcomes for patients with those conditions. The PR campaign around creating the disease of depression is probably one of the most impactful medical public relations campaigns in history, but is beyond the scope of this article.
The campaign I remember the best in regards to disease branding was Merck’s campaign for Gardasil HPV vaccine. Once they realized they had a potential way to prevent a type of female cancer (cervical cancer), a disease that had mostly been addressed through pap smears, they set out to create as much hysteria about cervical cancer as possible, including doing everything they could to scare young teenage girls to death of it.
A few close friends of mine were in school when Merck’s “One Less” campaign was launched and remember how a sudden hysteria about cervical cancer appeared out of nowhere (as it was made out to be extremely dangerous). This led to pressuring everyone being pressured to get vaccinated and many girls eagerly did so. While the campaign is not as prevalent now as it was at Gardasil’s initial launch (as the above ad shows), it’s still in use (Gardasil 9 came after the original Gardasil).
The problem was that Gardasil provided very little benefit for a condition adolescent girls were unlikely to get, and it had a massive number of severe side effects (it was also put on the market after Merck lost a lot of money from killing hundreds of thousands of Americans with Vioxx leading to the employees nicknaming it “Help Pay for Vioxx”). Many of my friends and patients have experienced severe permanent complications from this vaccine. One of the key reasons I saw through all the BS on the COVID vaccine rollout was due to its extreme similarity between the two products (Gardasil was approved through fraudulent research, muscled into use through bribes and previously was the most dangerous vaccine available to the general population).
When the “fight” between Will Smith and Chris Rock occurred, my first thought was that it looked very scripted and fake (people move very differently when they are fighting for real as opposed to faking it as happens in professional wrestling). Once I found out the information in the above meme, I realized this was a textbook case of disease branding, one of the many things you have to do throughout the drug development process (this is not well known, but drug development is actually not the primary expenditure for drug companies, it’s on marketing and lobbying).
One of the sad facts you learn as you put the glasses on is Pharma is the primary sponsor of many things in the media, and media coverage is heavily weighted to support their funders. On one hand this means promoting positive stories about. medication and forbidding negative reporting. On the other, it means the content itself is altered to support their broader narrative, as is the case here.
There are a variety of harmful pharmaceuticals on the market (this is a topic of interest for myself). One drug, Finasteride, commonly prescribed to prevent male balding, is one of the more toxic ones on the market, and I know numerous men who have suffered severe long-term complications from the drug (support groups can also easily be found online).
As hairloss is an area that has a lack of safe and effective treatments, I was curious to see how this drug worked. While much of the data is not available, I was able to infer the following:
Alopecia is an autoimmune disease, and a common side effect of COVID and the COVID vaccines.
The drug in question, Ritlecitinib, is an irreversible JAK 3 inhibitor (it does so by forming covalent bonds).
Covalent enzyme inhibitors (which often form irreversible effects) have had a variety of safety issues in the past which has led to them not being widely adopted as pharmaceuticals.
The JAKs are responsible for aspects of the immune response and normally promote inflammation and autoimmunity.
Per wikipedia: “Epithelial Jak3 is important for the regulation of epithelial-mesenchymal transition, cell survival, cell growth, development, and differentiation. Growth factors and cytokines produced by the cells of hematopoietic origin use Jak kinases for signal transduction in both immune and nonimmune cells. Among Jaks, Jak3 is widely expressed in both immune cells and in intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) of both humans and mice. Mutations that abrogate Jak3 functions cause an autosomal severe combined immunodeficiency disease (SCID) while activating Jak3 mutations lead to the development of hematologic and epithelial cancers. A selective Jak3 inhibitor CP-690550 (Xeljanz) approved by the FDA for certain chronic inflammatory conditions demonstrates immunosuppressive activity in rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and organ transplant rejection. However, Jak3-directed drugs also inflict adverse effects due to its essential role in mucosal epithelial functions.”
Briefly, this means there is a high risk for immunodeficiency (which has also been associated with Pfizer’s COVID vaccine). Additionally, another pharmaceutical which attacks the epithelial cells within the mucosal layer of the body is Accutane (Isoretinonin), which is associated with a high rate of severe chronic disease (I know numerous people who have had their lives ruined by Accutane, and this also can easily be verified online).
In a normal world, I would pray that the pharmaceutical company attempting to develop this medication could be trusted to engage in reliable and accurate safety trials before their medication came to market. However, that’s not the world we live in. Pfizer would not be investing in a PR campaign about it unless the decision had already been made to bring it to market. In most cases, once the initial marketing investment starts, the companies will not pull a drug regardless of how harmful or ineffective it is.
In almost all cases, I will not use a pharmaceutical unless it has been on the market for 10 years (as this is typically how long it takes for the major side effects to become known). It is entirely possible this medication is safe, but there are enough potential red flags that I would personally proceed with caution. I hence am relatively certain in the future I will have numerous difficult conversations with patients eagerly asking me to support them starting this medication.
Thank you for your support and sharing of this substack. Let me know if this type of content is helpful as well, or if longer research pieces are preferred.
A day after writing this, I was sent a now deleted post on this topic that summarizes many of the key details. When reading it, keep in mind that that Pfizer essentially bought BioNTech’s mRNA vaccine after it was developed, and that alopecia is a disease some people are willing to do anything to fix, especially if it is stigmatized:
”Pfizer is giddily popping Champagne over its HUGE win at the Academy Awards this week. Check out this crazy timeline:
• Between December 2020 and December 2021: VAERS receives over 3,000 reports of vaccine-induced alopecia after first or second dose of Pfizer Covid vaccine.
• February 2021: Arena Pharmaceuticals begins third round clinical trials for its new drug, Etrasimod, which treats alopecia.
• December 2021: Pfizer buys Arena Pharmaceuticals for $7 billion. (Arena’s website is gone now, swallowed up by Pfizer; use the Wayback Machine if you go looking.)
• March 23, 2022: Pfizer issues a press release announcing “Positive Top-Line Results for Phase 3 Trial of Etrasimod” (now called Ritlecitinib).
• March 27, 2022: The Academy Awards begin, sponsored by Pfizer.
… Chris Rock makes a joke about Jada Smith’s alopecia at the Academy Awards.
… Will Smith sissy-slaps Chris Rock on live TV and acts very put out, and says some non-family-friendly stuff, but gets the award anyway. And gets to keep it. And doesn’t have to take anger management.
… For the next few weeks, corporate media becomes fascinated with alopecia, how it hurts women, and why Jada Smith was so understandably upset about the joke. If only there were a safe and effective treatment! And, everybody’s talking about the Oscars. Bonus.
I’m not saying Chris and Will faked the slap. Who knows? But it sure was a great night for sponsor Pfizer, a real marketing coup. My gosh, Pfizer is on a roll — it was so lucky that Chris Rock told THAT exact joke, and THAT exact joke made Will Smith mad enough to act out so totally uncharacteristically and coincidentally promoted Pfizer’s new $7B medication that treats a painfully obvious side-effect of its Covid drug. I mean, what are the odds!”
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