A California woman was just awarded more than $70 million in her lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson, the American multinational corporation that specializes in developing medical devices and selling pharmaceutical and consumer packaged goods.
This is one out of several cases raising concerns about the health consequences of using regular talcum powder use. Approximately 1,000 more cases have been filed in Missouri state court, and another 200 in New Jersey, but this may well be the tip of the iceberg.
As Global News reports:
“The jury ruling ended the trial that began Sept. 26 in the case brought by Deborah Giannecchini of Modesto, California. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012. The suit accused Johnson & Johnson of “negligent conduct” in making and marketing its baby powder.”
Unfortunately, a statement from Carol Goodrich, a spokeswoman with Johnson & Johnson, said in the statement to Global:
“We deeply sympathize with the woman and families impacted by ovarian cancer…We will appeal today’s verdict because we are guided by the science, which supports the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder.”
Obviously, if these are the decisions being made by a court of law, there is ample amounts of science and evidence suggesting the baby powder was indeed the cause.
Earlier in the year, a decision was made last by a Missouri state jury that awarded the family of Jacqueline Fox $10-million of actual damages and $62 million of punitive damages.
In this case, we saw the exact same response from the company as the case noted above.
These cases show how people are using something they thought was perfectly safe, but clearly wasn’t. One of the most painful revelations, as Bloomberg notes, is that:
In the 1990s, even as the company acknowledged concerns in the health community, it considered increasing its marketing efforts to black and Hispanic women, who were already buying the product in high numbers. Fox was black. The jury foreman, Krista Smith, says internal documents provided the most incriminating evidence: ‘It was really clear they were hiding something.’ She wanted to award the Fox family even more. Imerys Talc America, the biggest talc supplier in the country and the sole source of the powder for J&J, was also named as a defendant. The company wasn’t found liable.
The ‘scientific evidence’ to which she refers clearly have not withstood the scrutiny of either this trial or concerned members of the public; it also fails to account for who funded the research. Her remark also makes plain a disturbing trend amongst big corporations, which is the blind trust of their employees. Many clearly believe what they are told about the products they represent, without questioning or doing their own independent research.
Scientific fraud induced by major corporations in this field is no secret, and various medical experts around the world have been speaking out against it for decades. Dr. Richard Horton, current Editor-in-Chief of The Lancet, one of the largest medical journals in the world, has publicly and unequivocally called out the scientific community for this negligence and outright fraud:
The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness. (source)
The sheer volume of statements from very credible people, along with the documents and evidence, attesting to this disturbing trend, is simply overwhelming. (You can find more information and view more examples/statements in an article we recently published about anti-depressant drugs here.) Yet the unfortunate reality is that employees of these big corporations stand behind their products, working under the assurances of corporately-funded science which, obviously, has profit in mind rather than safety. This is a widespread and alarming problem, and it’s great to see more people raise their voice against these shady practices. Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician and longtime Editor-in-Chief of the New England Medical Journal (NEMJ), is another such professional to do so:
It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine. (source)
It’s no secret that many household products are toxic to our health. Science has been confirming their dangers for years now (not that many of us needed this confirmation); these products are literally littered with a number of hazardous harmful chemicals. Researchers in the UK, for example, found that domestic products such as anti-insect sprays, deodorants, cleaning products, cosmetics, and more contain a number of cancer causing chemicals. The researchers, from the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, who concluded that these types of everyday household products maybe be contributing to 100,000 deaths every single year in Europe, warn that the public remains unaware of these risks.
Another example of an insider speaking out against the industry is Foster Gamble, the direct descendant of one of the founders of Procter & Gamble (a company similar to Johnson & Johnson). He himself explains that he was groomed for the establishment, but his ethical concerns prompted him to change direction.
To the left you will see a picture of him with Gerald Ford. Foster decided to leave the business and instead raise awareness about many issues, including the hazards associated with everyday household products that the corporations like his father’s manufacture.
He’s had an interesting life to say the least, and you can watch a documentary he released a few years ago here.