Did you know that during the 1990’s according to IMS Health, a national prescription-auditing firm, Ritalin and similar drugs for ADD rose five-fold to nearly 20 million prescriptions? Did you know that almost all the Ritalin manufactured in the world is sold in the United States? Does that mean that our kids are the only ones with attention deficit disorder in the whole wide world?
As a concerned parent, entrepreneur and North American citizen, I’ve been puzzled by all the tests that show American students are falling behind the rest of the world in the core learning skills needed for professional and academic success. So when I read the following quote from a noted expert, I thought I should pass it along to the 95% of all Americans who don’t have time to read one book a year. Michael R. LeGault is an award winning editor and columnist for the Washington Times and consultant to major U.S. companies on health, safety, and environment. The quote is found on page 94 of THINK.
“The pharmaceuticals used to treat the growing number of mental and psychological disorders are themselves the basis of a multi-billion-dollar industry. Even the schools get a piece of the action, with many school districts collecting extra funds called “bounties,” for each student diagnosed with a specific learning disability.”
Since I haven’t seen this information in the mainstream media I just thought other common folks like me would find it interesting that major drug companies are paying bounties to schools who put young students on a Schedule II controlled substance. By the way, the Drug Enforcement Agency classifies Ritalin together with the narcotics heroin and cocaine.
So, why is all this important to me, Mark Yarnell, a simple Network Marketing guy from the backwoods of Missouri? Because if common people like us don’t start paying attention to reality, and the media doesn’t start reporting socially relevant issues, the American Dream is going to morph into a full blown nightmare. I’m sorry that Anna Nicole Smith died this week. But I’m particularly sorry that according to the FDA, 160 kids have died over the last few years from reactions to Ritalin. I’ve missed that story in the media. I realize that the deaths of over 150 children during a few years is not as newsworthy as the sudden death of one really pretty celebrity. But I’d like to see a pharmaceutical industry spokesperson on Larry King Live explaining to America how they can legally pay “bounties” to schools to diagnose and then administer a Class II addictive drug to our children. I have this image of school McNurses dressed up like clowns carrying trays of “Happy Meds” to first graders. I also think an FDA spokesperson on Larry King should have to answer one simple question: Even if kids weren’t dying from Ritalin, is it ethical for schools to be paid overrides to moonlight as drug pushers while Network Marketers are prohibited from telling the truth about non-invasive supplements?
I’d like to see big pharma put lipstick on this pig. Surely, one of their 600 plus lobbyists is articulate enough to address the matter. At the very least, I’d like to see a responsible media organization force the issue, before some special internet group lobbies Congress to replace the Star Spangled Banner with the soundtrack to “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest.”