US Republican Senator Hatch from Utah (born March 22, 1934) has announced that he is retiring after having been a Senator since 1977. When he leaves, the Senate “will lose its most ardent supporter of alternative medicine“. His decision comes after ‘The Salt Lake Tribune’ published a Christmas Day editorial calling on him to do so. The editorial stated that he has an “utter lack of integrity” that comes from “his unquenchable thirst for power.”
For advocates of alternative medicine, Hatch’s retirement comes as a blow: for decades, the senator has been one of the most powerful defender of quackery. As a young man, Orrin Hatch sold vitamins and supplements. As an old man, he takes them every day—including. “I really believe in them. I use them daily. They make me feel better, as they make millions of Americans feel better. And I hope they give me that little added edge as we work around here”, he was quoted stating.
And his love was returned: Between 1989 and 1994 Herbalife International gave Hatch $49,250; MetaboLife, $31,500; and Rexall Sundown, Nu Skin International, and Starlight International a total of $88,550. In addition, according to his financial disclosures for 2003, Hatch owned 35,621 shares of Pharmics, a Utah-based nutritional supplement company. In the early 1990s, Hatch’s son Scott began working for lobbying groups representing vitamin and supplement makers. Kevin McGuiness, Hatch’s former chief of staff, was also a lobbyist for the industry.
The NYT reported in 2011 that Hatch “was the chief author of a federal law enacted … that allows companies to make general health claims about their products, but exempts them from federal reviews of their safety or effectiveness before they go to market. During the Obama administration, Mr. Hatch has repeatedly intervened with his colleagues in Congress and federal regulators in Washington to fight proposed rules that industry officials consider objectionable…
“Mr. Hatch has been rewarded with hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions, political loyalty and corporate sponsorship of his favorite causes back home.
“His family and friends have benefited, too, from links to the supplement industry. His son Scott Hatch, is a longtime industry lobbyist in Washington, as are at least five of the senator’s former aides. Mr. Hatch’s grandson and son-in-law increase revenue at their chiropractic clinic near here by selling herbal and nutritional treatments, including $35 “thyroid dysfunction” injections and a weight-loss product, “Slim and Sassy Metabolic Blend.” And Mr. Hatch’s former law partner owns Pharmics, a small nutritional supplement company in Salt Lake City…”
Further information is provided by Wikipedia:
Hatch’s son Scott Hatch is a partner and registered lobbyist at Walker, Martin & Hatch LLC, a Washington lobbying firm. The firm was formed in 2001 with Jack Martin, a staff aide to Hatch for six years, and H. Laird Walker, described as a close associate of the senator. In March 2003, the Los Angeles Times reported that the firm was formed with Hatch’s personal encouragement and that he saw no conflict of interest in working on issues that involved his son’s clients. In 2009, the Washington Times reported that Hatch said “My son, Scott, does not lobby me or anyone in my office”.
In March 2009, the Washington Times reported that the pharmaceutical industry, which has benefited from Hatch’s legislative efforts, had previously unreported connections to Hatch. In 2007, five pharmaceutical companies and the industry’s main trade association, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), donated $172,500 to the Utah Families Foundation—a charitable foundation which Hatch helped start in the 1990s and has continued to support since. Walker, Martin & Hatch LLC was paid $120,000 by PhRMA in 2007 to lobby Congress on pending U.S. Food and Drug Administration legislation.
Donald J. TrumpVerified account @realDonaldTrump Jan 2
Let’s not forget the links of Trump and others( e.g. Robert Kennedy) to the quackery industry and their criminal attacks on vaccines and science in general( ‘ Fake News’ as Colin the Disappeared would normally be squawking at this point).
I practiced medicine from 1981 to 2007. Mostly I consulted in hospitals when diagnostic help was needed. Several patients suffered from negative effect various dietary supplements.
Supplements were never as regulated as medications. The epidemic of eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome (EMS) in 1989 showed that. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1763543/ It is not mentioned in the article but the contaminated tryptophan that killed people was manufactured by a genetically modified bacteria.
But if it looked like people were being harmed, the FDA took action. The FDA’s ability to take action was severely limited in 1994 when Senator Orrin Hatch pushed through a bill that allowed supplement manufacturers to make unsubstantiated claims and severely limited what the FDA could do monitor or take action. At that time, Utah had more supplement manufacturers than any other state. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22535888/
For those that are not aware, there are a couple of watch-dog organizations that do product testing to assure that publicly sold products meet the claims my manufactures.
The problem of containments in food, beverages (and supplement) consumption is not a sudden issue. The idea of contaminants in supplements troubles me much more than any potential inefficacy of the supplement. Do no harm.
I quit consuming omega-3 fish oil years ago when I leaned that I could obtain the source from flax seed oil. That said, flax seed oil can be contaminated with the likes of glyphosate, so it’s a coin toss. I opt to consume the flax, oil rather than the fish oil, as mercury toxicity is something for which I have a greater distaste. Most foods are contaminated to some extent, choose your battles.
I do consume multi-vitamins. That said, I cut them in half, as I presume, I obtain the balance I need from my foods. So one pill consumed over two days. So if my vitamin pill is suspect, I am subjecting myself to less contaminants.
What an excellent expose’! I guess if you hold untenable, anti-scientific views, are a champion of payola, are a self-aggrandizing whack promoting a truly monstrous cult like Mormonism to other pasty-faced twits you too can get an ‘affirmative’ Trump tweet.
And they have the god damn nerve to describe themselves as public-servants….
Speak of needing a good detox.
The more I learn about odious Republican Party grandees, the greater my disrespect for American politics. The only pity is this creep resigned before being executed by the system which spawned him.
Hatch and his fellow legislative “criminal” Tom Harkin were responsible for the DSHEA(Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act) in 1994, giving rise to the multi billion dollar supplement industry in the US, making it profitable to sell junk via health promotions without any proof of efficacy or toxicity. Whole Foods, other “health” food stores, alternative creeps and about every pharmacy profits from this massive scam. He created the modern day Snake Oil Salesmen and Industry. The above article finally exposes his profit motivations. No one should be surprised at his sycophantic and disgusting praise for Trump the day the GOP gloated over their recent tax “reform” bonanza.