Thursday, February 27, 2003

Pfizer Irrationally Attacked
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: January 30, 2003

In the Jan. 27 edition of the Yell, there appeared an article titled "Pfizer Pfradulent" in which the author accused the company of purposely killing people or putting them in mortal danger for the purpose of increasing their profits.

This article was an outright assault on human reason and made no qualms about it either, saying outright of the claim, "No one can link it, but many of us have learned not to trust big corporations." It also made the ridiculous claim that "as a chemical goes up the food chain, it gets more potent." Now, I've been quizzing science majors (Biology and Chemistry mostly) on whether this supposed fact is in any way true, and none of them seem to have any idea of what the author was talking about. But seeing as this is mere hearsay, I've checked the online version of the AMA Journal and could find no articles dealing with any such phenomenon. And you'd think doctors would care as they would, presumably, be diagnosing and treating this problem all the time.

This person claims to have learned this "fact" in Environmental Science 100, which leads me to believe that some, if not all, of the professors within said college are pushing an agenda rather than any science. The college being named after U.S. Senate minority whip Harry Reid, who no doubt got the college funded through a bit of pork spending, buttresses the assertion that the faculty at that college is trying to create unreasoning and uncritical socialists who go out and condemn companies like Pfizer on the basis of a crazy theory the author admits can't be proved in any way (as Harry Reid is an unthinking socialist.)

Then the actual numbers in the article, I'll accept them for the sake of argument, prove absolutely nothing, especially to someone versed in even the basics of human history. The author says that 200-300 people get sick from food they've eaten everyday and of these 73,000-109,500 who get sick, 5,000 will die in the course of a year. What does this prove? I'm sure the numbers 100 years ago of food related illnesses were much higher, considering sanitation wasn't taken very seriously at all...not to mention the 5,000 people who die from food related illness (salmonella occurs naturally by the way) could easily have died from undercooking their meat or any number of accidents people have with food preparation. With no proof, the criterion established by the author, I could just as easily say the government is testing out chemical weapons by putting toxins into a random sample of food and that that is accounting for the 5,000 deaths. As you can see, this line of reasoning, or non-reasoning, is ridiculous and gets us nowhere.

Another crazy quote from the article (and there were many to choose from) alleged that, "These boosters are antibiotics to keep the animals disease-free and big and bulky for our super sized value meals." Even if one accepts this statement as fact, would one rather eat disease-ridden meat? Or maybe the solution is, as I've heard from many Environmental Studies students, to not eat meat at all? I smell an agenda creeping in over science again.

Pfizer is doing nothing more than creating products, ones which happen to save millions of lives every year, that people obviously want, or they wouldn't be selling anything. This attack on them for no reason whatsoever is an appalling look at what an education at Harry Reid's school might get you, a mind of mush. Objectivist philosopher Michael Berliner once said of the environmentalist movement, "The fundamental goal of environmentalists is not clean air and clean water; rather it is the demolition of technological/industrial civilization. Their goal is not the advancement of human health, human happiness, and human life; rather it is a subhuman world where "nature" is worshipped like the totem of some primitive religion." And the article attacking Pfizer could demonstrate this no better. Especially the part about not proving it. Just like primitive religions (or any religion) one is asked to accept things based on the mere fact that they've been spoken, regardless of whether they are true.

If Environmental Studies produces scholars of this caliber then I think the people who run UNLV should save themselves some money and the deteriorating minds within "Harry Reid's School of Non-Reason" and shut it down. School is about reason and thinking, not propaganda and unsupported theories. If you want that, then go to church or to government.

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