Dana Ullman‘s book, "The Homeopathic Revolution: Why Famous People and Cultural Heroes Choose Homeopathy" describes how, in 1899, Simmons began his 25-year reign as head of the AMA. At that time, it was a weak organization with little money and little respect from the general public. Simmons came up with the idea to transform the AMA into a big business by granting the AMA‘s "seal of approval" to certain drug companies that placed large and frequent ads in JAMA.
Advertising revenue increased substantially, from $34,000 in 1899 to $150,000 in 1909. Critics of the AMA have called their seal-of-approval program nothing but a form of extortion, since the AMA did no testing of any products.
In 1924, Simmons was forced out of the AMA due to the many scandals swirling around him. One investigation revealed that:
- Simmons had no credible medical credentials
- He worked primarily as an abortion doctor for many years
- He had had sex charges brought by some of his patients as well as charges of negligence in the deaths of others
His replacement, Morris Fishbein, was a specialist in publicity and the media; he was a medical doctor who never practiced medicine.
Shortly after he became head of the AMA, he wrote several books sharply critical of medical practices that were not AMA approved. He called chiropractic a "malignant tumor," and he considered osteopathy and homeopathy "cults." Fishbein also extended Simmons‘s idea for the AMA seal of approval to foods, and by including a significant amount of advertising from food and tobacco companies, he was able to make the AMA and himself even richer.
By 1950, the AMA‘s advertising revenue exceeded $9 million, thanks in great part to the tobacco companies. This should certainly make you think twice when you see something christened with the AMA’s “seal of approval.” From the very beginning, the people behind the AMA were not about protecting your health; they were interested in gaining power and getting rich.
And yet, it wasn’t that long ago that the AMA was still in the minority. People didn’t trust this new conglomeration, because in the 19th century, most Americans thrived on more natural approaches like homeopathic medicine.
Then, in 1847, along comes the AMA. They wanted control and they wanted money, so what did they do? They kept all homeopathic physicians out of their “club,” and proceeded to call all related remedies “quackery.”
If you didn’t want to pay to join the club (by advertising in JAMA), anything you recommended would also be criticized.
Note that none of this was based on scientific evidence, or even anecdotal evidence of what was really healthy. It was solely about money. If you could buy your way in, your products and your name would be endorsed, end of story.
Yet, at this time, people were still questioning the allopathic model that the AMA was touting. If you haven’t yet read Medical Control, Medical Corruption by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr., please do, as it goes into great detail about the sordid events that followed.
AMA: A True Medical Monopoly
The AMA claimed that the public did not know what was good for it and that the medical establishment must have total control. And they have since gained just that.
“Thanks to this central committee of the medical cartel [the AMA],” Rockwell writes, “the number of medical schools and medical students is drastically restricted, state licensure further obstructs the supply of doctors, fees are largely secret and controlled across the industry, alternative treatments and practitioners are outlawed, pharmacists and nurses are hamstrung, and the mystique of the profession rivals the priesthood, although priests have a somewhat lower income.
Meanwhile, the customer pays through the nose, even if he does not go to an otolaryngologist.”
To put it simply, they took control of the medical schools and made it so that only those who graduated from one of them could practice medicine. Well, since they controlled the schools, guess what was largely taught? How to use prescription drugs.
“The Rockefeller family had invested heavily in allopathic drug companies and wanted doctors to use their products,” Rockwell writes, and so they also gave grants to the schools that the AMA endorsed.
This medical monopoly is largely responsible for the problems that exist in conventional medicine today:
- Heavy ties to the drug industry
- Reliance on drugs, surgery and hospital stays
- No competition, leading to outrageous prices that most Americans cannot afford
- Calling tried-and-true natural remedies and most all non-medical doctors quacks