Comfits of Interest, WHO TobReg, Globalink, Tobacco Control, etc. : Double Standard and/or Hypocrisy ?
We realised, three years later…, that in his E-Letter dated 9 September 2005, PN LEE did NOT declare (for some reason and perhaps because he felt he had no reason to do it, or simply he did not pay attention to the small “Competing Interest” box to be ticked) that he was "a long term consultant to the Tobacco Industry".
Amazingly, Simon CHAPMAN, Editor-in-chief (by that time) of the Tobacco Control journal (see left cover of current issue), did not subsequently launch an international defamation campaign against him. He even offered to publish that E-Letter as a “real” Letter to the Editor .
And since "The journal [Tobacco Control] requires authors to declare any competing interests at submission and, with the availability of internal documents, those failing to disclose can often be relatively easily exposed within a few minutes of internet searching"… PN LEE did declare, this time: "Competing interests: Peter Lee is a long term consultant to the tobacco industry"….
Of course, the problem here is not PN LEE who is a great and brilliant epidemiologist who has worked on ETS (Environmental Tobacco Smoke) and has also made excellent critical reviews of tobacco studies, including rare ones. He has the right to work as a consultant to the Tobacco Industry, the Pharmaceutical industry or any other institution. The scientific merit of his work has remained constant and unaffected. The problem is in fact the double standard applied by Simon CHAPMAN.
Why did not the latter trigger an international defamation campaign against PN LEE as he actually did with [KC] further to [his] E-Letter (2 Dec 2004)? He did not allow [kc] to post a response to his [Simon Chapman’s] libelous E-Letter. [kc] wish[es] to remind that the E-Letter [he] posted was the first one of [his] life, long before [he actually began to publishe devastating critiques in biomedical journals. We can say that his first official biomedical publication was the critique of the WHO flawed report on hookah smoking] . Few people will remember that this dangeroues E-Letter was in fact a message originally posted in the GLOBALINK forum (whose stringent and puritan policy is controlled, among others and above all, by Simon CHAPMAN)[QUESTION: sort of ethical comfit of interest, no ?]. [kc] was compelled by the latter, in person, to post it as an “E-Letter” to "his" journal. [kc] ignored what this thing was by that time. The full background of the related witch hunt can be found in an online document .
 Lee PN. E-Letter: Response to E Yano and S Chapman. Tobacco Control 2005 (9 Sep) http://tobaccocontrol.bmj.com/cgi/eletters/14/4/234#410
 Lee PN. Response to E Yano and S Chapman. Tob. Control 2005;14;430-431
 Chapman S. Research from tobacco industry affiliated authors: need for particular vigilance. Tobacco Control 2005;14:217–219.
 Background of witch hunt: http://docs.google.com/View?docid=dgbz283m_83fdtkjd
PS: GLOBALINK, giving the image of a civil society grouping of
volunteers fighting for a “noble cause” [that of “Public Health”…, Heavens above !](it is not !), boasts of being supported by PFIZER, one of the major producers of NRT (nicotine “replacement” pharmaceuticals). The commercial logo of this company can be found on the homepage of GLOBALINK.
As for the UICC (International Union against Cancer), the umbrella organisation of Globalink, the “corporate partners” are a bit different (GlaxoSmithKline and other brands...) but belong the same Big Pharma family. QUESTION: is this ethicallly acceptable from a comfit-of-interest viewpoint ?
HIGHLY RELEVANT TO THIS WORLDWIDE HYPOCRISY. Jack HENNINGFIELD, who has been a “peer-reviewer” (as a member of WHO TobReg) of the WHO flawed report, had also posted a comment (similar to a E-Letter) on the critique of that document published by KC. The above expert did NOT declare his striking competing interests in the pharmaceutical industry as other highly respectable researchers and observers have noted.
In fact, Jack HENNINGFIELD is “Vice President, Research & Health Policy” of PINNEY ASSOCIATES whose business is not that of plastic shoes but officially "international pharmaceutical manufacturers and marketers, established specialty pharmaceutical companies, and start-up companies making their first forays into the development and marketing of drugs”.
Despite all this, Erik DYBING and Jack HENNINGFIELD had the cheek, in their common comment, to answer the “Competing interests ?” question by “None declared”. To top it all, this official comment was published simultaneously with one from their protégés (Wasim MAZIAK, Thomas EISSENBERG, Kenneth WARD and Alan SHIHADEH) who actually defamed the author of the critique of the WHO flawed report on the grounds of a purported comfit of interest…
The story is very long as Wasim MAZIAK and Thomas EISSENBERG failed to declare interests in relation to [the whole ""WaterPipeGate""™ file]. Finally], a recent case of hypocrisy/double standard in “tobacco control” is involving the Addiction journal (Editor-in-chief Robert WEST and his protégé Wasim MAZIAK) and has come to our attention. Readers will be briefed on it. Stay tuned.
HIGHLY RELEVANT READINGS
Thomas EISSENBERG's (a world ""Waterpipe""™ expert) Undeclared Competing Interests swept under the carpet by Nicotine and Tobacco Research, the same journal known for having...
Endorse[d] a Scientific Error as Big and Carcinogenic as a Yemeni Narghile Bowl !
Chaud-Crâne for your email, kamal !
YOU ARE NOT ON THE HOME PAGE of the OBSERVATORY on HOOKAH OR HEALTH (Narghile, "Waterpipe"™, Health, Risks, Dangers, Diseases, Tar, Nicotine, Cancer). CLICK HERE to go there !