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If you still believe that television news exists to look out for your best interests, you are hopelessly naive. The big networks are going to protect their customers at all costs, and you are not their customers. You are the product. CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS and Fox are all trying to get as many of us watching as possible so that they can deliver millions upon millions of ad impressions to their true customers. Of course the biggest customers of all are in the pharmaceutical industry. According to Adweek, the pharmaceutical industry spent more than 400 million dollars on national television advertising during the month of March alone…
In March, prescription pharmaceutical brands spent an estimated $403.4 million on national TV advertising, according to recently released data from iSpot.tv, the real-time TV measurement company. That’s almost twice as much as the second top-spending category for the month, automakers (est. $216.1 million), and a 16% increase from prescription pharma’s February outlay.
Big Pharma is the giant elephant in the room and nobody else is even close.
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If they keep spending like they did in March, they will have spent nearly 5 billion dollars on national television advertising by the end of this year.
And “news programming” is one of the primary areas where they focus that spending…
Examining how Rx brands are prioritizing TV ad spend, news programming is a key area: Combined, the pharma industry spent nearly $15 million advertising during ABC World News Tonight With David Muir in March, generating 986.7 million TV ad impressions. NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt, Good Morning America, CBS Evening News With Norah O’Donnell, Today and CBS Mornings also were in the top ten programs by spend for the industry.
If a certain industry is showering you with millions upon millions of dollars, do you think that you will have an incentive not to do any negative stories about that industry?
It is just human nature.
Any news executive that does not take special care to protect the network’s most important customers is not likely to have a job for long.
During the 18 months that stretched from the beginning of 2020 to the middle of 2021, the pharmaceutical industry spent more than 2 billion dollars “on ads during primetime cable news”…
Over two billion dollars ($2.2B) were spent on ads during primetime cable news (5 pm until midnight on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC) and nightly network news programming on ABC, CBS, and NBC between January 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021. Fox News earned the most in advertising ($622M) and CBS earned the least ($205M).
Please pay special attention to that last sentence.
Fox News received more money from Big Pharma during that period than anyone else.
So if any Fox News hosts were to be highly critical of the pharmaceutical industry, that would put hundreds of millions of dollars at risk. But that is precisely what Tucker Carlson did less than a week before he was fired.
He delivered a blistering monologue in which he revealed the truth about the damage that the industry is doing and the influence that it has over the big news networks…
Personally, I believe that this is one of the primary reasons why he was fired.
But executives at Fox News will never, ever admit this.
No matter how popular you are, you simply are not allowed to threaten the gravy train. There is just way too much money at stake.
And according to a study that was recently conducted at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, much of the money that is being spent is used to promote drugs “with low added benefit”…
A new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that the share of promotional spending allocated to consumer advertising was on average 14.3 percentage points higher for drugs with low added benefit compared to drugs with high added benefit.
The analysis also revealed that the majority—68 percent or 92 of the 135 drugs included in the analysis—of the top-selling prescription drugs sold in 2020 were rated as offering low added benefit. The U.S. does not currently assess prescription drugs for comparative effectiveness. The researchers based their rating categories on France and Canada’s ratings of the same prescription drugs sold in the U.S., some under different brand names.
In other words, a lot of these drugs aren’t even that beneficial. But that isn’t what matters.
What matters is getting people hooked on these drugs so that the profits keep rolling in.
If you want to get rich, the pharmaceutical industry is a great place to do it.
Just consider the CEO of Moderna. He made nearly 400 million dollars last year…
Stéphane Bancel, chief executive of Moderna, had a good year in 2022, exercising stock options that netted him nearly $393 million. The company decided his pay wasn’t good enough.
The Cambridge, Mass.-based biotech, known for its lifesaving coronavirus vaccine, raised his salary last year by 50 percent to $1.5 million and increased his target cash bonus, according to a March securities filing. Bancel, 50, says he is donating the proceeds of stock sales to charity. He owns stock worth at least $2.8 billion and, as of the end of last year, had additional stock-based compensation valued at $1.7 billion.
Whether their products are good or not, the pharmaceutical industry is always going to get favorable coverage from the big news networks because that is how the game is played.
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And our politicians are always going to protect Big Pharma because they desperately want the sweet, sweet campaign donations to keep arriving. So don’t expect anything to change any time soon.
We have become a nation that is teeming with corruption from the very top to the very bottom, and we are on a collision course with national suicide. No house will be able to stand for long if the foundation is rotten to the core.
And thanks to the endless greed of those that are in positions of power, our foundation has been rotten to the core for a long time. But we aren’t supposed to talk about such things, are we? We are just supposed to pretend everything is fine as they systematically extract billions of dollars out of us.
Article cross-posted from End of the American Dream.