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Nutrapoison Part I

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Nutrapoison Part III

Doubts About Safety

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Brain Tumors

How Safe is it

Graves Disease

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Dry Eyes Syndrome

Eyes

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Acesulfame K

Aspartame Information

Nutrapoison Part Three

by Alex Constantine


Based on the ersatz assurances of the CDC report, PepsiCo announced that it would drop saccharine and begin sweetening its diet drinks entirely with aspartame. The decision would have been approved by Wayne Calloway, then CEO of PepsiCo and director of the multinationals Citicorp, General Electric and Exxon. In 1983 soda bottlers, organized around Pepsi had petitioned the FDA for a delay in approval of NutraSweet for soft drinks until further evaluation verified its safety-interpreted by market analysts as a ploy to drive down the price of the sweetener. They soon abandoned the effort to block approval (and all health concerns they might have had). "We believe saccharine is safe," Pepsi USA President Roger Enrico lied, but "we wanted the taste improvement." PepsiCo, already drawing on a tenth of Searle's 7.5 million pound annual production of aspartame, signed an agreement with G.D. Searle to boost purchases 500 percent.89 (Like other corporate pushers of aspartame, Pepsi has long maintained ties to the intelligence community. One product of the relationship was a Pepsi plant in Vientiane, Laos with a laboratory outfitted for heroin production. Alfred McCoy, in *The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia* documents the efforts of Richard Nixon to promote the plant's construction in 1965, and the CIA's continuing subsidization of the plant. McCoy complained to Pepsi officials that the facilities were but a cover for the importation and refinement of morphine, but it continued to operate unhindered.)

Yet another report was filed by Reagan's General Accounting Office in July 1987, this one on the FDA's handling of aspartame. The GAO concluded that the agency had followed proper procedures and conducted valid studies. But the report noted that the FDA had followed guidelines for food -not drug- testing, despite the recommendation of the agency's own biologists favoring *drug* tests, which are considerably more stringent. This recommendation was overruled by FDA officials.90

Another blemish in the study was bared by Dr. Louis Elsas, director of medical genetics at Emory University in Atlanta. "They never asked the right questions about what it does to brain function in humans," he told the _Washington Post_. Half of the scientists polled expressed reservations about the safety of NutraSweet. One-fifth reported "major concerns." Monsanto quibbled in a press release that these critics had themselves never conducted aspartame research. A score of independent scientists have. They found side effects.

Senator Metzenbaum berated Searle's flawed and fabricated tests at the August 1, 1985 Senate hearings. "The FDA," he said, "is content to have the manufacturer of aspartame, G.D. Searle, conduct these studies. How *absurd*."

He also faulted the AMA:

The _Journal of the American Medical Association_ recently published a report on aspartame which, with some significant disclaimers, stated it was safe for most people. I wish that this report could ease my concerns. It does not. It merely restates the FDA position which relies solely on the tests conducted by G.D. Searle. As I have indicated these tests are under a cloud. In addition, the concerns raised recently by the scientists ... were not even included in the report.

In defense of the tests, executives of G.D. Searle argued that the sweetener has been approved by foreign regulatory agencies and the World Health Organization. But H.J. Roberts, an internal medicine specialist in West Palm Beach, Florida, reviewed the foreign studies and found that "the vast majority of these agencies accepted company-sponsored research without ever having done independent confirmatory studies.''91

Deficiencies in testing were aggravated by a lack of laboratory training at Searle. One of the pivotal safety studies involved fetal damage, but the FDA task force found that the medical researcher in charge was "inexperienced in conducting studies of this nature and yet given full responsibility." They were appalled to discover that his sole credential was a field study of the cottontail rabbit for the Illinois Wildlife Service, yet at Searle he'd been assigned to laboratory training and supervision. When asked about his *curriculum vitae* in fetal research, he replied that he'd once attended a seminar on the subject, and the company had provided him with a stack of reference works.92 (Yet J.D. Searle, in its 1981 Annual Report, billed itself as "a research based pharmaceutical company.")

Corporate control of NutraSweet testing continues at Monsanto, torturing the ethics of academic medicine. In August 1987 the University of Illinois, a recipient of Monsanto's largess, issued a study exonerating aspartame of causing seizures in laboratory animals. Dave Hattan, a safety regulator for the FDA, responded that the study only confirmed the need for testing on humans. At independent labs, he insisted, aspartame provoked seizures.

Industrial support tends to contaminate test data. Dr. Elsas, in a 1988 letter to the _New England Journal of Medicine_, advocates unbiased review of clinical research. "The NutraSweet Co.," he said, "may have had an interest in protocols that would find that their product had no untoward effects." 94 Monsanto reportedly granted one NutraSweet researcher a $1.3 million honorarium.95 The same hired gun willing to manipulate lab results will have no qualms publicly defending a tainted pharmaceutical, like the diabetic specialist who objected that a Senate hearing on aspartame, which called him as a witness, might arouse groundless public anxiety.96

Victims and health activists have attempted in the courts to put a stop to the marketing of NutraSweet, to no avail. In 1985 a coalition of consumer groups were handed a ruling by the federal Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia that the FDA had followed proper procedures in approving aspartame for soft drinks. A year later the _Washington Post_ reported that the Supreme Court again refused to consider the case "despite critics' arguments that the product, sold under the brand name NutraSweet, may cause brain damage."97

Likewise, the medical establishment has thrown up an impenetrable wall to aspartame critics. Dr. Roberts, author of a brief study, "Aspartame-Associated Confusion and Memory Loss: A Possible Human Model for Early Alzheimer's Disease," found it impossible to publish the article in a peer review medical journal. This was peculiar, he thought, "considering the increasing magnitude of Alzheimer's disease, and the relevance of my observations to newer biochemical findings and avenues of research." He can "personally vouch for the *enormous* difficulty in getting published articles concerning reactions to aspartame products," a trend in censorship with "ominous overtones." The options, Dr. Roberts says, are "generally limited to 'burying' the findings in a small-circulation journal (such as the bulletin of a county medical society), reporting the results as a letter to the editor, or (unfortunately, most often) discarding the project."98

Silence surrounds the most odious conspiracies.

  1. "Sweet Talk," Science and the Citizen column, _Scientific American_, July, 1987, p. 15.
  2. "Adverse Effects of Aspartame-January '86 through December '90," Current Bibliography series, National Library of Medicine pamphlet, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1991.
  3. "Pepsi Switches Sweeteners-Aspartame Winning Diet Cola Market," _Washington Post_, November 2, 1984, p. A-1.
  4. Mae Brussell, World Watchers #842, KAZU-FM, Monterey, CA., January 25, 1988.
  5. _Moody 's Industrial Manual_, 1975, p 2606
  6. G.D. Searle's 1981 _Annual Report_. Also, Arnold Foster and Benjamin R. Epstein, *Cross-Currents*, Doubleday & Co. (New York: 1956), p. 153.
  7. Nancy Lisagor and Frank Lipsius, *A Law Unto Itself: The Untold Story of the Law Firm of Sullivan & Cromwell*, William Morrow (New York: 1988), pp. 13738, 163.
  8. John Marks, *The Search for "The Manchurian Candidate ": The CIA and Mind Control*, Times Books (New York: 1979), pp.58,67 & 212. Marks writes that incapacitating "large numbers of people fell to the Army Chemical Corps, which also tested LSD and even stronger hallucinogens. The CIA concentrated on individuals."
  9. John Peer Nugent, *White Night.- The Untold Story of What Happened Before-and Beyond-Jonestown*, Rawson, Wade (New York: 1979), pp. 143, 177.
  10. Michael Meiers, *Was Jonestown a CIA Medical Experiment?A Review of the Evidence*, Mellen House (Lampeter, UK: 1988) p. 42.
  11. Ibid., p. 43.
  12. Ibid., pp. 42-43. For a sanitized account of Dr. Layton's career, see Min S. Yee and Thomas N. Layton, *In My Father 's House: The Story of the Layton Family and the Reverend Jim Jones*, Holt, Rinehart and Winston (New York, 1981).
  13. National Council of the National Front of Democratic Germany and the Committee of Anti-Fascist Resistance Fighters of the German Democratic Republic, *The Brown Book: War and Nazi Criminals in West Germany*, Verlag Zeit im Bild, 1965, pp. 33-34.
  14. Dan J. Forrestal, *Faith, Hope & $5,000: The Story of Monsanto*, Simon and Schuster (New York: 1977), p. 159.
  15. *Brown Book*, p. 34.
  16. Tom Bower, *The Paperclip Conspiracy: The Hunt for the Nazi Scientists*, Little, Brown & Co. (Boston 1987), pp. 93, 95.
  17. Howard W. Ambruster, *Treason's Peace: German Dyes and American Dupes*, Beechhurst Press (New York: 1947), p.144
  18. Nigel West, *MI6: British Secret Intelligence Service Operations, 1909-1945*, Random House (New York: 1983), p.92
  19. Jaques Attali, *A Man of Influence: The Extraordinary Career of S. G. Warburg*, Adler & Adler (Bethesda, Maryland: 1987),p. 167.
  20. Forrestal, p. 121ff.
  21. Anthony Cave Brown, *The Last Hero, Wild Bill Donovan*, Vintage (New York: 1982), pp. 210211. Also: Ernst Hanfstangl, _Unheard Witness_, J.R. Lippincott (New York: 1957)
  22. "Search for the Tiger's Treasure," _Las Vegas Sun_, December 26, 1993, p.1.
  23. _Moody 's Industrial Manual_, 1968, p. 4080.
  24. "Radiation and the Guinea Pigs," _Guardian_, March 3, 1994, p. 3. Also see, "Nuclear Scientists Irradiated People in Secret Research," _New York Times_, December 17, 1993, p. Al.
  25. Christopher Simpson, *Blowback: America's Recruitment of Nazis and Its Effects On the Cold War*, Wiedenfeld & Nicholson (New York: 1988), pp.26, 152-53. Col. Pash, a former high school gym teacher, was an officer of the Office of Policy coordination under Frank Wisner. His unit, writes Simpson, "known as PB/7, was given a written charter that read in part that 'PB/7 will be responsible for assassinations, kidnaping, and such other functions as from time to time may be given it... by higher authority."' Pash was a member of the Russian Orthodox Church, a veteran of the Russian Civil War. Monsanto's Clinton Engineering Works in Oak Ridge became the Manhattan Project's headquarters in 1943, and was "manned almost entirely by experienced officers and agents of the CIC." See lan Sayer and Douglas Botting, *America's Secret Army: The Untold Story of the Counter intelligence Corps*, Franklin Watts (New York: 1989), pp. 71ff.,346.
  26. Robin Thomas Naylor, *Hot Money and the Politics of Debt*, Simon & Schuster (New York, 1987), p.289.
  27. "Statement from Adrian Gross, Former FDA Investigator and Scientist," _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985, p. S10835.
  28. Florence Graves, "How Safe is Your Diet Soft Drink?" _Common Cause_, July/August,1984.
  29. Ibid.
  30. "FDA Finding on Aspartame," _New York Times_, January 14,1984, p. 28.
  31. Article in Medical World News,1978, cited in I .N. Love "NutraSweet Isn't that Sweet," _Gentle Strength Times_, October 1987, p. 3.
  32. "Dick Wurtman's Ideas Aren't So Crazy After All," _Business Week_, December 14, 1992, p. 60.
  33. "A Sour View of Aspartame ," _San Francisco Chronicle_, August 25, 1987.
  34. "Amendment No. 60" (debate), _Congressional Record_, May 7, l985, p. S5516.
  35. "Lobbyist's Cozy Ties with Ex-Boss Sen. Hatch Include Client Referrals, Political Fund-Raising," _Wall Street Journal_, February 18, 1993. Eli Lilly contributed $17,500 to Hatch's campaign chest between 1985 and 1988. Sen. Hatch filed a of friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of Eli Lilly in a 1989 patent case. Other pharmaceutical houses enjoy his political favors. Lobbyist Thomas Parry remains a key adviser to Sen. Hatch:- "Nobody gets better care than his former chief of staff," reports the _Journal_.
  36. Ibid.
  37. Jane E. Brody, "Sweetener Worries Some Scientists," _Science Times_, February 5, 1985.
  38. _Who 's Who in Industry and Finance_, 97th ed., Macmillian (Wilmette, IL.) p. 583.
  39. "Food and Drug Administration Food Additive Approval Process Followed for Aspartame," GAO Report B223552, June 18,1987.
  40. "GAO Investigating NutraSweet Approval," UPI, reprinted in _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985,p. S10823.
  41. Graves.
  42. "Head of FDA Tested Drugs on Volunteers," _Washington Post_, June 26, 1983, p. A4.
  43. Austin H. Kiplinger, *Washington Now*, Harper & Row (New York: 1975), pp. 36-37.
  44. Daniel Guttman and Barry Willner, *The Shadow Government: The Government's Multimillion Dollar Giveaway of its Decision-Making Powers to Private Management Consultants, ''Experts, " and Think Tanks*, Pantheon, (New York:1989),p.173.
  45. Bruce Oudes, ed., *From: The President-Richard Nixon 's Secret Files*, Harper & Row (New York: 1989), p. 173.
  46. James A Smith, *The Idea Brokers: Think Tanks and the Rise of the New Policy Elite*, Free Press (New York: 1991), p.282.
  47. Sterling Seagrave, *Yellow Rain: A Journey Through The Terror of Chemical Warfare*, M. Evans and Co. (New York: 1981), pp. 258 "After a meeting with President Nixon, Representative Gerald Ford attacks politicians who criticize the Pentagon CBW efforts, saying the critics seem to favor 'unilateral disarmament."'
  48. Christopher Palmeri, "Act Three," _Forbes_, October 26, 1992, p. 88
  49. "Westmark Systems Expands Board, Hires 3 New Vice Presidents," _Wall Street Journal_, February 11,1988, p.33.
  50. Graves.
  51. Ibid.
  52. "Hon. Samuel K. Skinner," _Congressional Record_, Congressional Printing Office, Washington, D.C., August 1, 1985, pp. S10827, S10835.
  53. Graves.
  54. _Congressional Record_, August 1,1985, p. S10823.
  55. Graves.
  56. "Critics Cause Bush Cabinet Search to Stumble," _Los Angeles Times_, December 22,1988.
  57. Herman Rogan, *Traditions and Challenges: The Story of Sidley & Austin*, R.R. Donelly & Sons (Chicago: 1983), p.266.
  58. *Who's Who in America*, 48th ed., 1994.
  59. Ibid.
  60. "Deukmejian Thrives in Private Life, Law Work," _Los Angeles Times_, January 3, 1992, p. Al.
  61. "Chicago Law Firm Agrees to Pay Up to $34 Million in Lincoln S&L Case," _Los Angeles Times_, May 21, 1991, p. D5;and "Sidley & Austin RTC Said to Reach Pact," _Wall Street Journal_, October 31, 1991, p. B4. The basis of the suit was a memo written on May 10, 1988 by Margery Waxman, a partner in Sidley & Austin's Washington office, to Charles Keating. In it, she said "pressure" had been applied to M. Danny Wall, then chairman of the Home Loan Bank Board, "to work toward meeting your demands and he has so instructed his staff."
  62. "Suit Accuses 7 Drug Makers of Price-Fixing," _Los Angeles Times_, October 15, 1993, p. Dl. Other pharmaceutical houses accused of conspiring to fix prescription drug prices included Smith-Kline-Beecham, Ciba-Geigy Corp., American Home Products, Schering-Plough and Glaxo.
  63. Ida Honorof, "FDA Coverup of Hazards of Nutra-Sweet," _Report to Consumers_, Vol. XVIII, No.401, December, 1987. Also, "Two Ex-U.S. Prosecutors' Roles in Case Against Searle are Questioned in Probe," _Wall Street Journal_, February 7,1986, p. 4. Ironically, William Conlon won an appointment to the Illinois State Board of Ethics in 1982 (Kogan, p.359).
  64. Graves
  65. _Los Angeles Times_, December 22, 1988.
  66. "Sam Skinner: A Pragmatist in a Storm," _Wall Street Journal_, December 6, 1991.
  67. "Samuel Knox Skinner," _New York Times_, December 23, 1988.
  68. Graves.
  69. "Statement from Adrian Gross, Former FDA Investigator and Scientist," _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985, p. S10835.
  70. _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985, p. S 10831, and "Statements from Adrian Gross," p. S10838.
  71. "FDA Handling of Research on NutraSweet is Defended," _New York Times_, July 18, 1987, p. 50
  72. H.J. Roberts, M.D.,*Aspartame (NutraSweet): Is it Safe?*, Charles Press (Philadelphia: 1990), p. 10.
  73. _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985, p. S108-28.
  74. Ibid., p. S108-34.
  75. Ibid.
  76. Graves.
  77. "Sweet Suspicions," three-part CBS Nightly News series, January 1984. Transcript reprinted in the _Congressional Record_, August 1, 1985, p. S108-26.
  78. Ibid.
  79. Raymond Bonner, "Searle Stock Query Held 'Smokescreen,"' _New York Times_, February 29, 1984, p. D5
  80. William Safire, "Sweet and Sour," _New York Times_, June 1, 1984, p. A31.
  81. Louis Wolf, "Accuracy in Media Rewrites the News and History," _Covert Action Information Bulletin_, Number 21 (Spring 1984), pp. 24-37.
  82. I.N. Love, "NutraSweet Isn't that 'Sweet,"' in _Gentle Strength Times_, October 1987, p.3.
  83. Graves.
  84. "Complaints on Aspartame Lead to Nationwide Investigation," _Los Angeles Times_, July 5, 1984, p. Hl.
  85. "Federal Agency Sees Little Risk in Sweetener," _New York Times_, November 2, 1984, p. A22.
  86. _Los Angeles Times_, July 5, 1984.
  87. _New York Times_, November 2, 1984.
  88. "U.S. Study of Aspartame Finds no Serious Effects," _Washington Post_, November 2, 1984, p. A18
  89. "Pepsi Switches Sweeteners," _Washington Post_, November 2, 1984, p. AI.
  90. "Most Scientists in Poll Doubt NutraSweet's Safety," _Washington Post_, August 17, 1987, p. A23.
  91. Roberts, p. 238.
  92. _Congressional Report_, May 7, 1987, p. S5500.
  93. "New Findings Back Use of Sweetener," _New York Times_, August 1987, p. 30.
  94. "Researchers Differ Over Long Range Effects of Sweetener," _Los Angeles Times_, November 3, 1988, p. Hl.
  95. Roberts, p. 244.
  96. Roberts, p. 248.
  97. "High Court Rejects Sweetener Review," _Washington Post_, April 23, 1986, p. C.
  98. . Roberts,p. 246-47.


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