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Consumers Union Has The ‘Drugs You Need!'
Satire is a key part of the newest chapter in Consumers Union ongoing crusade against the pharmaceutical industry. CU's website uses as an animated commercial, "The Drugs I Need" to promote it's support for proposed legislation that would require "drug companies to make all their studies public..." without ascertaining the quality of those studies.

The CU commercial, which appears to have been created by someone influenced by non-FDA approved drugs, works well as entertainment. After viewing it, Winston could not stop laughing – until he remembered that serious federal policy issues were at stake. Of course, the purpose of the commercial is to gain attention while avoiding serious discussion of pharmaceutical policy issues.

Missing from commercial and CU's entire anti-pharmaceutical campaign is any mention of the countless lives saved and lives improved by the pharmaceutical industry. Also missing from the CU campaign is a reference to how pharmaceutical products reduced the need for invasive medical procedures.

CU describes the animated commercial as "part of a new approach to public policy and consumer education by Consumers Union..." Based on the commercial, it would appear that CU's idea of an educational campaign is one that makes fun of people who are ill and completely devoid of intellectual content. After all, why engage the public in a serious discussion of complex issues when you can increase your contributions through whimsical animated songs?

Although the CU commercial would work well on Saturday Night Live, the notion that it is educational is as laughable as the ad itself. Winston's greatest regret about the "Drugs I Need" commercial is that Hunter S. Thompson isn't around to see it. Thompson, who said that "when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro" would have admired CU's professionalism.
  • Click to see CU press release.

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