I've received a lot of reader feedback since writing the article on the Hoodia scam
, and it appears some people are a little bit confused about my position on the issue. Why I would choose to write about a nutritional supplement company that was selling a counterfeit product and using a lot of unscrupulous marketing tactics? Let me clarify here: I am not a defender of all nutritional supplements and everything natural health just because it's a supplement or just because it's a vitamin. Simultaneously, I am not a critic of everything from the pharmaceutical industry. This article is a clarification is exactly what I stand for, why I'm a huge defender of Free Speech, and why I'm willing to hunt down crooks in any industry and expose them for all the world to see.
Let's start with some basics: the number one cause of death in this country is organized medicine and there is a huge effort out there to try to discredit nutritional supplements and prevent people from learning the truth about how supplements and nutrition can not only prevent chronic disease, but even reverse it. There's plenty of evidence for this.
However, that doesn't mean I'm not willing to stand up and point out a company in the nutritional supplements industry that is ripping off customers. I'm not going to stand by idly or just walk away from an issue like that if I become aware of it, and I'm convinced the hoodia company I've covered before is not only ripping people off, but may possibly be harming folks, because who knows what's really in those capsules that are being sold to customers? I don't know what was in the capsules I received. What I do know, though, according to the lab results I got from the three different tests that Truth Publishing paid for, was that it was not Hoodia Gordonii. I know that for sure.
We don't need new regulations, we need to prosecute crooks
Some of the other emails I received said, "Hey Mike, why are you doing this? It's almost like you're calling for regulation of the nutritional supplements industry." That's definitely not my position. Even if there were additional regulation of the supplements industry, the FDA is the wrong body to do it. The FDA has well proven it's going to defend the financial interests of the pharmaceutical industry at all costs, it's going to discredit supplements and herbs (and especially Chinese herbs) at every opportunity and it's going to completely ignore any standards of safety for prescription drugs.
For example, the FDA panel voted to put Vioxx back on the market, even though this drug – according to the FDA's own drug researcher, Dr. David Graham – has caused 144,000 heart attacks, and at least 40 percent of those were fatal. Apparently that is not dangerous enough for the FDA to say, "Hey, this should be taken off the market." So, there's no question the FDA shouldn't be regulating nutritional supplements -- they just don't have the integrity to handle it. If anything, the FDA seemingly just wants to wipe out supplements altogether.
On the other hand, do we need more regulation for nutritional supplements in this country? There are, after all, some con artists out there selling products. I don't think we need new regulations. I think we just need to enforce the existing laws. You see, this particular problem I investigated and reported on was not a supplement-regulation problem; this was a criminal problem. This was a con artist problem, and if we enforce the laws we have right now, we can get these people off the internet and out of business, and we can help protect the integrity of the nutritional supplements industry. So, this is not a regulatory question; this is a law enforcement question. If we had more regulations about nutritional supplements, it wouldn't stop people like this, because we (as a nation) are not enforcing the laws on the books right now that could take con artists out of society, or at least take them offline.
Making an honest living is not that difficult
I have to add: I don't have anything personally against the person who turned out to be a con artist. In fact, I feel sorry for the guy in a big way. I have a lot of compassion for him. He must have a terribly sad life. He must have non-stop conflict; it has to be a terrible way to live. He may not realize success can be achieved by moving in the other direction. You can achieve success in the natural health
business by being honest, having integrity, selling an honest product to people, offering good customer service and being creative. I mean, this guy was creative enough to set up three front companies, and set up all these product comparison charts that were rigged, of course. He was creative enough to do all of that and handle the production, bottling, labeling, shipping and search-engine advertising. The guy has some talent. Why not use it to do something good?
In fact, if he were selling an honest product, he would have received my recommendation, because I want to recommend companies that are selling honest products, delivering what they promise to deliver and treating customers well. It wouldn't take much more effort to do something right, and get my recommendation, than it would to be a con artist and end up having me investigate your company and write a huge exposé on it. Some people, it seems, just want to be criminals for whatever reason. They want to flout the law, they want to take the short cuts and they're not willing to put out the effort it takes to achieve real results. Make no mistake; it takes effort. If you want to create success, you're going to have to put in the time, the effort and the dedication.
I know this and other entrepreneurs know this: There are no shortcuts. When I launched my software company, I worked at least 60 hours a week, year after year after year, taking no vacations whatsoever; no weekends off. I did this for so many years -- at least five or six --- before the company really started to grow and become a financial success and a marketplace success. That's a sacrifice not everybody's willing to make.
Even in terms of writing about natural health topics, I wrote at least 1,000 articles before we really got any kind of decent readership through Truth Publishing and all the websites it owns. It took some real effort to get out there. There are no overnight successes, but if you have the creativity; if you have the intelligence to build a successful product and to build a successful business, why not use it to do something good? Why not get the thanks of people, be able to sleep at night, and have all the good karma that goes along with that? It's not that much more difficult than being a criminal mastermind. You can be positive and do some good in the world just as easily, I think.
I'm going to expose the con artists in medicine
I say to all the con artists out there -- whether they're in the pharmaceutical industry, the nutritional supplements industry or the surgical procedures industry -- if I hear about your con, and I can manage to dig up enough evidence on it, I'm going to write a feature story and you will be found out. You will be caught. You will be publicized for conning the people.
At the same time, if I find companies that are selling fantastic products -- or if I see creative individuals who are innovative in this industry, provide an honest product, provide an honest service and are really helping people be healthier -- then I'm going to promote that even more. That's what I'm really passionate about. I'm talking about companies like New Chapter and their Berry Green product, which is just a fantastic, innovative product; something that I believe can literally help prevent, and in some cases, even reverse chronic disease.
There are plenty of products out there that offer health benefits to consumers. Miracle Greens is another great, innovative supergreens product; it deserves a lot of recognition. Similarly, the Enzymatic Therapy Earth's Promise product is truly remarkable as well.
I love to see innovation out there; companies that are willing to put in the work and apply the energy it takes to do something right, and then find success in doing that. Any company would really deserve credit for that, and I hope to give them credit for it, to give them publicity and help make connections between those companies and customers who need their information and products.
An independent voice for natural health
My role here is just to be the voice for both the customers and these companies. I am here to serve as a bridge between them. And to serve as an effective bridge, you have to be truly independent. You can't be financially involved in any of the companies you're recommending, and I am not. You can't take kickbacks, you can't have any payola and you can't be making affiliate fees, because the minute you start taking money from the companies you're recommending, you start becoming distorted. You don't have neutrality any more.
We bridges have to have very strong ethics laid down in concrete that say, "Hey, we cannot accept money or sponsorship fees from anybody, especially from these companies that we're recommending." That means we're able to speak freely and give you the real story about what we see out there in the natural health industry. So, if you're looking for the real story; the real information -- and you probably notice that you get a lot of good, juicy information here on this network -- then this is the place to go.
I'm not trying to say that you're going to agree with everything that I say. On the contrary, nobody agrees 100 percent on everything. I'm also not saying we know all the great products that are out there. We don't. No one person can. It would be impossible. However, I am saying you're going to get an honest opinion that hasn't been distorted by financial influence; it hasn't been modified due to the requirements of political correctness or the politics of the publisher. You're not going to get a story that has an agenda of pleasing advertisers, which is what you see in the mainstream press all too often. All these stories about the "miracles" of prescription drugs -- for example, this new statin drug, impotence drug, anti-cholesterol drug, anti-inflammatory drug -- these stories keep advertisers happy, don't they? That's because the advertisers are supporting more and more of the salaries and financial infrastructure of the media today.
Why mainstream media can't be trusted on health
How can you get an honest story when all the people writing the stories are, in effect, paid by the drug companies? You can't, and that's why most of the information out there is just hogwash. It's completely distorted; it's basically payola. You pay the right publisher enough money in advertising; you have influence over their content. That's why you can only get trusted content from sources that are truly independent.
I have people say to me, "No, Mike. I work for a newspaper, and we have an iron curtain between editorial and advertising." But there's always influence. Because the minute someone tries to do an exposé on some advertiser -- let's say it's the local car dealer that's been caught rolling back the odometers -- the car dealer calls the ad executive and says, "Hey, we're going to pull all our ads for the next year and we're going to boycott your paper if you run that story." The next thing you know, (gee, what a coincidence) the story gets canned. It never runs. There's always influence in modern media, and it's naive to think otherwise. There's no such thing as objectivity when the very companies you're supposed to be writing about are paying you.
So, I know that's getting a little off track from the original focus of this editorial here, but the point is that personally, I'm going to continue to cover the stories that are important. Whether it's a nutritional supplement company, a pharmaceutical company, good news or bad news, I'm going to cover what I believe to be true and what I believe to be important for the consumer out there. I cannot be bought, I can't be paid off and no one can come in and threaten me with legal action to get me to change my story. It doesn't work. I know what free speech is and I'm willing to defend it.
If all of that interests you, I invite you to stick around, because there's a lot more interesting content where this stuff came from. There's a whole universe of information I hope to get into print, audio and websites, so that you can learn the truth about what's going on out there. The truth will shock you; you couldn't even imagine what's really true, because the world that most people live in today is nothing but one illusion after another and one distortion after another. Propaganda, misinformation, disinformation -- all designed to keep you buying as a consumer. Keep consuming, folks! Help the economy! Be a good American!
Yeah, make sure that every penny of your monthly paycheck goes out for something; drug companies, home loan, home mortgage, auto insurance, new clothing, personal care products or high-priced (over-priced) food products. They want to make sure that every penny you earn gets spent on something that makes them money. That's the agenda out there.
But I say there's another way. I say there's a totally different way to live. A way where you control your finances, you control your choices, you control your health outcome and you control your destiny; a way where you can create abundance and you can find true happiness – not the false happiness that people think comes with buying a new car, but by finding a way to have healthy, loving relationships in your life; a way to give back to society; a way that helps you find outstanding cognitive function and lucidity through nutrition, superfoods, medicinal herbs and honest nutritional supplements.
All of these things are possible. Information is what helps people connect with those ideas, and then pursue them to turn them into reality. I hope to be one of the people in your life who can help bring you that kind of empowering transformative information.