Originally published April 23 2015
Was Vox.com infiltrated by Monsanto Discredit Bureau?
by Julie Wilson staff writer
(NaturalNews) A gatekeeper of the industry, Vox's Julia Belluz has consistently attacked Dr. Mehmet Oz and other proponents of natural health since early 2010, invoking suspicions that she may be employed covertly as an operative for Monsanto's "Discredit Bureau."
Though her earlier reports are unmentionable, now that consumer interest has turned towards natural health alternatives, desperate to stay relevant, the food, drug and chemical industry needs her as their mouthpiece now more than ever.
Belluz's repeated slandering of Dr. Oz reached new levels when she recklessly reported on a letter signed by 10 doctors addressing Columbia University, demanding that Oz be fired from his senior staff position.
Vox.com completely failed to perform real journalism by ignoring important facts that would quickly discredit claims made by the biased doctors, possibly due to Belluz's likely position as an operative for biotech-affiliated front groups.
Vox journalist paid to defend industry henchman?
Belluz failed to note that a key signer of the letter, Dr. Gilbert Ross, is a convicted criminal and Medicaid fraud artist who was sentenced to 47 months in federal prison for racketeering, mail fraud and conspiracy.
Dr. Henry Miller, who also endorsed the letter, has a clear bias, as he was the FDA's medical officer in charge of Humulin, the first GMO to be approved for human use.
Learning that his biased ties were going to be exposed on Thursday's airing of The Dr. Oz Show when Oz intends to address his critics, Miller emailed Belluz insisting that, although he's "written extensively" about GMO regulatory policy, he has "no conflicts of interest."
Even after learning about the corruption and ulterior motives behind the doctors' letter, Belluz accepted Miller's statement, posting it in her report and adding:
But even if Miller and his co-signers do have conflicts of interest -- as other observers have also suggested -- it's largely beside the point. Attacking their motivations completely sidesteps the substance of their claims, which did not come in isolation.
Her response is a failed attempt at journalism, and her rebuttal follows the pattern of an operative paid to discredit opposing views.
Attacks intensify after Dr. Oz talks GMOs
The attacks against Dr. Oz started to heat up following the airing of a segment about a new International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) reported which concluded that glyphosate in Monsanto's Roundup causes cancer.
Despite the world's growing concern over genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that are designed to be heavily sprayed with Roundup, Belluz uses Dr. Oz's stance on the crops to call him a "quack," surreptitiously diverting attention away from the harm being caused by GM plants.
After reviewing her "journalism," one thing is clear, and that's her outright willingness to attack anyone who disagrees with the original narrative instilled by Big Food and Big Pharma -- fitting behavior for a Monsanto discredit operative.
Suspicions about the world's most evil corporation having an entire department devoted to discrediting any science that opposes theirs has now been confirmed and described by Stephanie Hampton in this Daily Kos article.
Belluz's collusion with industry-backed scientists makes her the perfect candidate for Monsanto's secret Discredit Bureau.
A long-time defender of the establishment, Belluz considers herself an expert on "established medical fact," spending the majority of her career conducting what she considers independent research on "the interplay between science, policy, and industry as it relates to health."
Her enthusiasm for industry-backed science likely played a key role in landing her current position as Health Reporter for Vox.com, an American news website launched last year by former Washington Post employee and liberal columnist Ezra Klein.
A personal vendetta against alternative medicine
Early on in her career, Belluz decided it was her calling to go after what she considers "quacks" that promote pseudoscience, or essentially anything that goes against the monopolistic medical establishment. In her eyes, offering advice on how to detox naturally makes you the equivalent of a snake oil salesman.
A long-time explorer of alternative medicine, Dr. Oz, whose TV show attracts more than 3 million viewers per episode, quickly came under attack. With her army of supporters growing into the millions, blogger and activist Vani Hari, the "Food Babe," also fell victim to Belluz's criticism in a piece called, "How should journalists cover quacks like Dr. Oz or the Food Babe?"
Some of Belluz's other articles include:
- "Unless you're a heroin addict, you probably don't need to detox. Here's why."
- "Autism rates aren't actually increasing"
- "Fruits and vegetables poison more Americans than beef and chicken"
Belluz also takes credit for her part in influencing the Toronto Star to retract an article relaying the dangers of the Gardasil HPV vaccine, arguing that the injuries allegedly caused by the shot are impossible to prove.
However, a February 2014 report published in Autoimmunity Reviews states the contrary, noting several cases in which receivers of the Gardasil vaccine developed autoimmune diseases, "triggering concerns about its safety."
Belluz intensifies focus on discrediting Dr. Oz
In her latest attempt to dismantle Dr. Oz's credibility, Belluz interviewed his colleagues and mentors, hoping to uncover defamatory details about his career or personal life that would surely shrink his fan base.
Instead, she is forced to discuss his impeccable achievements, including the credentials that Dr. Oz received from three Ivy League schools. While questioning his credibility, Belluz reports that Dr. Oz won the reputable Blakemore Research Award four years in a row, naming him as the most outstanding surgery resident, honoring his impressive research abilities.
Colleagues of Dr. Oz describe him as being "brilliant, charming" and highly regarded at his New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center.
Belluz asked Dr. Richard Green, associate chief of cardiac, thoracic and vascular surgery at the hospital, if he would want to be Dr. Oz's patient. He replied, "If you did a poll of the staff at Columbia and asked them, 'If you needed a heart operation and Mehmet was there, would you want him?' they'd say yes."
So what's the problem?
With a proven academic and professional record, as well being highly regarded by his colleagues, other than being paid to do so, why else would journalists such as Belluz viciously attack Dr. Oz?
After all, it is a free market, and he is allowed to plug whatever he wants on his TV show. Plus, whom has Dr. Oz hurt with his recommendations?
No one that I can name. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of other physicians who push medical devices and drugs onto patients not because it's the best treatment, but because they've been financially motivated to do so.
If Belluz is genuinely concerned about the public being misled, then perhaps she should expose the incestuous relationship between Big Pharma and participating physicians. But that would be a conflict of interest for a discredit operative paid by Monsanto.
Allegations against Dr. Oz are weak at best
Upon close examination of the allegations against Dr. Oz, one must question what the true motive is behind the attacks. Surely, it's not the ones described by Belluz.
Referring to a leaked email in which Dr. Oz, his staff and executives at Sony (one of his show's producers), Belluz claims Oz is only interested in new business ventures rather than the health of his fans.
In a January 2014 email, Dr. Oz reached out to Sony, expressing interest in their new wearable health gadget line, hoping to promote them on his TV show. The emails are anything but shocking. Yet, Belluz tries to paint Oz as a bad guy for wanting to explore Sony's health gadgets, a move that's far from unethical in the business world.
Perhaps Dr. Oz has promoted a few products that aren't approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but is that enough to warrant defamation of his character? After all, the FDA's track record is pretty lousy when it comes to deciding which products are safe.
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