Cigarette manufacturers who never claimed that their product is a panacea for health are sued on a regular basis on the grounds that their products are harmful to health. Conversely, drug manufacturers who claim that their products are good for health and are sued on the grounds that their products kill people with side effects, scientifically demonstrated, seek total immunity on the grounds that their product has been approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration. In short: “We have been approved by the state, give us your money and buzz off. Sue the FDA if you want to sue someone” – knowing damn well that suing public health is a futile endeavor for the overwhelming majority of the population.
The pharmaceutical industry says that patients are amply protected by the Food and Drug Administration, which approves drugs after reviewing their benefits and risks. In a case called Wyeth vs. Levine, business groups and the government are asking the Supreme Court to impose strict new limits on lawsuits against drug firms.
Big Pharma is now pushing for complete immunity from liability for its drugs. So much for a “responsible” industry. If it were truly responsible, it would not pay off activist organizations to lie about smoking to promote its trash products.
The article, of course, is reported acritically by SFGate (San Francisco Chronicle), humble ass-kisser of the pharmaceutical multinationals. If the company in question would have been Philip Morris instead of Wyeth you would have seen a hell of a spin, and the ideological reminder that "smoking is the first preventable cause of death" although not even one death can be scientifically demonstrated.