Busted: Co-Author of Flawed Stanford Organic Study Has Deep Ties to Big Tobacco’s Anti-Science Propaganda
By: Mike Adams & Anthony Gucciardi
Over the last several days, the mainstream media has fallen for an elaborate scientific hoax that sought to destroy the credibility of organic foods by claiming they are “no healthier” than conventional foods (grown with pesticides and GMOs). NaturalNews and NaturalSociety have learned one of the key co-authors of the study, Dr. Ingram Olkin, has a deep history as an “anti-science” propagandist working for Big Tobacco. Stanford University has also been found to have deep financial ties to Cargill, a powerful proponent of genetically engineered foods and an enemy of GMO labeling Proposition 37.
The New York Times, BBC and all the other publications that printed stories based on this Stanford study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine have been victims of an elaborate scientific hoax carried out by corporate propagandists posing as “scientists.”
The evidence we show here (see below) demonstrates how this study was crafted under the influence of known anti-science fraudsters pushing a corporate agenda. Just as Big Tobacco sought to silence the emerging scientific evidence of the dangers of cigarette smoke, the biotech industry today is desperately seeking to silence calls for GMO labeling and honest, chemical-free food. The era is different, but the anti-science tactics are the same (and many of the quack science players are the same!).
Flawed organic food study author Ingram Olkin chief statistical ‘liar’ for Big Tobacco
Here’s a document from 1976 which shows financial ties between Philip Morris and Ingram Olkin, co-author of the recent organic foods study.
The so-called “research project” was proposed by Olkin, who was also at one time the chairman of Stanford’s Department of Statistics.
Olkin worked with Stanford University to develop a “multivariate” statistical algorithm, which is essentially a way to lie with statistics (or to confuse people with junk science). As this page describes on the use of these statistical models: “Obviously, if one chooses convenient mathematical functions, the result may not conform to reality.”
This research ultimately became known as the “Dr. Ingram Olkin multivariate Logistic Risk Function” and it was a key component in Big Tobacco’s use of anti-science to attack whistleblowers and attempt to claim cigarettes are perfectly safe.
This research originated at Stanford, where Ingram headed the Department of Statistics, and ultimately supported the quack science front to reject any notion that cigarettes might harm human health. Thanks to efforts of people like Ingram, articles like this one were published: “The Case against Tobacco Is Not Closed: Why Smoking May Not Be Dangerous to Your Health!” (http://andrewgelman.com/2012/09/cigarettes/)
By the way, if today’s “skeptics” and “science bloggers” were around in the 1950’s and 60’s, they would all be promoters of cigarette smoking because that was the corporate-funded scientific mythology being pushed at the time. Back then it was tobacco, today it’s vaccines and pesticides. New century, new poisons, same old quack science.
The evil Council of Tobacco Research
As the evidence clearly shows, Ingram Olkin has a history of collaboration with tobacco industry giants who sought to silence the physicians speaking out regarding the dangers of cigarettes. One such entity known as the Council of Tobacco Research (CTR) has been openly exposed as paying off publication companies and journalists with more than $500,000 (about $3,000,000 today after adjusting for inflation) as far back as 1968 in order to generate pro-smoking propaganda. The kind of “dark propaganda” serves only to deceive and confuse consumers with phony, fabricated “scientific evidence.”
It all seems eerily similar to the organics-bashing story that just recently appeared in the New York Times, written by proven liar Roger Cohen .
CTR was part of the massive Tobacco Institute, which was essentially a colossal group of cigarette corporations using quack science to attempt to hide the true effects of cigarettes from the public. CTR was a key player in attempting to defeat the monumental case known as the Framingham Heart Study (http://www.framinghamheartstudy.org/) — a historical research project that linked cigarette smoking to heart disease. It was during this time that Olkin applied to the CTR in order to oversee and conduct a project smearing and ‘disproving’ the Framingham study.
This can be proven simply by examining the words of the cigarette manufacturer lawyers who were desperate to defeat the potentially devastating heart study. In their own documents, they state:
“I met with Dr. Olkin and Dr. Marvin Kastenbaum [Tobacco Institute Statistics Director] on December 17, 1975, at which time we discussed Dr. Olkin’s interest in multivariate analysis statistical models. Dr. Olkin is well qualified and is very articulate. I learned, in visiting with Dr. Olkin, that he would like to examine the theoretical structure of the “multivariate logistic risk function.”
In an even more telling statement, Olvin’s “sidekick” Dr. Kastenbaum, was revealed to be highly knowledgeable “tobacco industry’s participation in the public disinformation regarding the health hazards of tobacco use, the manipulation of nicotine in tobacco products and the marketing of tobacco products to children.” In other words, these scientists were part of a massive deception campaign intended to smear any real information over the serious dangers of cigarette smoking using ‘black ops’ disinformation techniques.
This deception campaign is being paralleled once again, in 2012, with the quack science assault on organics (and a simultaneous defense of GMOs). Biotech = Big Tobacco. “GMOs are safe” is the same as “cigarettes are safe.” Both can be propagandized with fraudulent science funded by corporate donations to universities.
Dr. Kastenbaum, by the way, went on to become the Director of Statistics for the Tobacco Institute intermittently from 1973 to 1987. Another name for his job role is “corporate science whore.”
Organics study co-author was hired to perform scientific “hatchet jobs”
Further documents (http://tobaccodocuments.org/bliley_bw/521028845-8850.html) go on to state that Olkin then received a grant from the CTR for his work alongside disinformation specialist Dr. Katenbaum in an effort to perform “deliberate hatchet jobs” on the heart study as described by author Robert N. Proctor Golden in his book entitled Golden Holocaust: Origins of the Cigarette Catastrophe and the Case for Abolition. Golden explains how Olkin was paid off along with others to falsely testify in Congress that cigarette smoking did not harm the heart:
“George L. Saiger from Columbia University received CTR Special Project funds ‘to seek to reduce the correlation of smoking and disease by introduction of additional variables’; he also was paid $10,873 in 1966 to testify before Congress, denying the cigarette-cancer link…”
This was the same organization that paid what amounts after inflation to over one million dollars to journalists and major publications to disseminate phony information supporting their claims. It’s also important to note that during this time Olkin was still prominently placed within Stanford, remaining so even after openly concealing the truth about the cigarette heart disease link from the public.
Now, Olkin’s newest research fails to address any real factors in the difference between conventional GMO-loaded food and organic. At the same time, it absolutely reeks of the similar ‘black ops’ disinformation campaigns from the 1960’s and 70’s in which he was heavily involved.
Make no mistake: The Stanford organics study is a fraud. Its authors are front-men for the biotech industry which has donated millions of dollars to Stanford. The New York Times and other publications that published articles based on this research got hoaxed by Big Tobacco scientists who are documented, known liars and science fudgers.
Stanford secrecy, plus ties to Monsanto and Cargill
Stanford receives more secret donations than any other university in the U.S. In 2009 alone, these donations totaled well over half a billion dollars.
There’s little doubt that many of these donations come from wealthy corporations who seek to influence Stanford’s research, bending the will of the science departments to come into alignment with corporate interests (GMOs, pesticides, etc.).
Who is George H Poste?
• Distinguished Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.
• Member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
• Served on the Monsanto board since February 2003.
• Former member of the Defense Science Board of the U.S. Department of Defense.
Stanford University has also accepted $5 million in donations from food giant Cargill (a big supporter of the biotech industry) in order to expand Stanford’s Center on Food Security and the Environment (FSE). “Food security” is a euphemism for genetically engineered crops. Much of the research conducted there is done to try to advocate GMOs.
Cargill has also donated big dollars to try to defeat Proposition 37 in California.
The “scientific” Hall of Shame – a list of scientists funded by the Tobacco industry to fake scientific results
The CRT is the Council of Tobacco Research — essentially a scientific front group that was set up to attempt to invoke “science” to “prove” that cigarettes were not bad for your health.
This list just proves how easily scientists sell out to corporate interests when given grant money. Remember: What Big Tobacco pulled off with fake science in the 20th century, Big Biotech is pulling off yet again today.
Documents reflect that, at a minimum, the following individuals and organizations received funding through Special Account No. 4 beginning in the 1960s and ending in the 1990s:
Able-Lands, Inc.; Lauren Ackerman; ACVA Atlantic Inc.; George Albee; Aleph Foundation; Arthur D. Little, Inc.; Aspen Conference; Atmospheric Health Sciences; Domingo Aviado; James Ballenger; Alvan L. Barach; Walter Barker; Broda 0. Barnes; Battelle Columbus Laboratories; Battelle Memorial Institute; Walter Becker; Peter Berger; Rodger L. Bick; Billings & Gussman, Inc.; Richard Bing; BioResearch Laboratories; Theodore Blau; Irvin Blose; Walter Booker; Evelyn J. Bowers; Thomas H. Brem; Lyman A. Brewer, III; Brigham Young University; Oliver Brooke; Richard Brotman; Barbara B. Brown; K. Alexander Brownlee; Katherine Bryant; Victor B. Buhler; Thomas Burford; J. Harold Burn; Marie Burnett; Maurice Campbell; Carney Enterprises, Inc.; Duane Carr; Rune Cederlof; Domenic V. Cicchetti; Martin Cline; Code Consultants Inc.; Cohen, Coleghety Foundation, Inc.; Colucci, & Associates, Inc.; Computerland; W. Clark Cooper; A. Cosentino; Daniel Cox; Gertrude Cox; CTR; Geza De Takato; Bertram D. Dimmens; Charles Dunlap; Henry W. Elliott; Engineered Energy Mgt. Inc.; Environmental Policy Institute; J. Earle Estes; Frederick J. Evans; William Evans; Expenses related to Congressional Hearings in Washington D.C.; Hans J. Eysenck; Eysenck Institute of Psychiatry; Jack M. Farris; Sherwin J. Feinhandler; Alvan R. Feinstein; Herman Feldman; Edward Fickes; T. Finley; Melvin First; Edwin Fisher; R. Fisher; Merritt W. Foster; Richard Freedman; Herbert Freudenberger; Fudenberg; Arthur Furst; Nicholas Gerber; Menard M. Gertler; Jean Gibbons; Carl Glasser; Donald Goodwin; B. Greenberg; Alan Griffen; F. Gyntelberg; Harvard Medical School; Hearings-Kennedy-Hart Bill; William Heavlin; Norman Heimstra; Joseph Herkson; Richard J. Hickey; Carlos Hilado; Charles H. Hine; Hine, Inc.; Harold C. Hodge; Gary Huber; Wilhelm C. Hueper; Darrell Huff; Duncan Hutcheon; Industry Research Liaison Committee; Information Intersciences, Inc.; International Consultancy; International Technology Corporation; International Information Institute, Inc.; J.B. Spalding Statistical Service; J.F. Smith Research Account; Jacob, Medinger & Finnegan; Joseph Janis; Roger Jenkins; Marvin Kastenbaum; Leo Katz; Marti Kirschbaum; Kravetz Levine & Spotnitz; Lawrence L. Kuper; Mariano La Via; H. Langston; William G. Leaman; Michael Lebowitz; Samuel B. Lehrer; William Lerner; Edward Raynar Levine; G.J. Lieberman; S.C. Littlechild; Eleanor Macdonald; Thomas Mancuso; Nathan Mantel; R. McFarland; Meckler Engineering Group; Milton Meckler; Nancy Mello; Jack Mendelson; Michigan State University; Marc Micozzi; Irvin Miller; K. Moser; Albert Niden; Judith O’Fallon; John O’Lane; William Ober; J.H. Ogura; Ronald Okun; Ingram Olkin; Thomas Osdene (Philip Morris); Peat, Marwick Main & Co.; Thomas L. Petty; Pitney, Hardin & Kipp; Leslie Preger; Walter J. Priest; R. Proctor; Terrence P. Pshler; Public Smoking Research Group; R.W. Andersohn & Assoc.; L.G.S. Rao; Herbert L. Ratcliffe; Attilio Renzetti; Response Analysis Project; Response Analysis Consultation; R.H. Rigdon; Jay Roberts; Milton B. Rosenblatt; John Rosencrans; Walter Rosenkrantz; Ray H. Rosenman; Linda Russek; Henry Russek; Ragnar Rylander; George L. Saiger; D.E. Sailagyi; I. Richard Savage; Richard S. Schilling; Schirmer Engineering Corp.; S. Schor; G.N. Schrauzer; Charles Schultz; John Schwab; Carl L. Seltzer; Murray Senkus (Reynolds); Paul Shalmy; R. Shilling; Shook, Hardy & Bacon; Henry Shotwell; Allen Silberberg; N. Skolnik; JF Smith; Louis A. Soloff; Sheldon C. Sommers (CTR); JB Spalding; Charles Spielberg; Charles Spielberger; Lawrence Spielvogel; St. George Hospital & Medical School; Stanford Research Institution Project; Russell Stedman; Arthur Stein; Elia Sterling; Theodor Sterling; Thomas Szasz; The Foundation for Research in Bronchial Asthma and Related Diseases; The Futures Group; Paul Toannidis; Trenton, New Jersey Hearings; Chris P. Tsokos; University of South Florida; Helmut Valentin; Richard Wagner; Norman Wall; Wayne State University; Weinberg Consulting Group; Roger Wilson; Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation; Jack Wiseman; George Wright; John P. Wyatt; J. Yerushalmy; and Irving Zeidman.
Natural Society staff contribution