In case you haven’t noticed, pill companies invent fictitious diseases and then manufacture and advertise fraudulent pills to ‘relieve’ these non-existent conditions. Here’s how:
Interoffice memorandums between Ted Lee, CEO, and Dave Jones, Production Chief, of Basura Pharmaceuticals:
To Dave from Ted: “The USFDA is getting our bottom line down by exposing some of our meds that have serious side affects and even death. I expect that our Prendex and Gonchitate 37 will be pulled off the market soon. Can your team invent a new disease or something so we can make a designer med to RELIEVE, not CURE! it ?”
To Ted from Dave: “We had a long brainstorming session and came up with “Crotch Itch” As far as we know, there is nothing on the market for this; possibly our new disease! What do you think?”
To Dave from Ted: “Sounds interesting, Dave. Can your people come up with a TV and magazine saturation advertising campaign….like ‘The Purple Pill’? Can we get people worried about it? What can we name the remedy?”
To Ted from Dave:Ted, “Sarah Jenkins has come up with what sounds like a good name; ‘SKRATCHNIX’ She said we should make it in tablet form, pink with light blue stripes… oval shape. Lab says they can make it out of cornstarch and soy flour at about .03 cents per unit. We can patent a prescriptive chemical name. How about “tri-lipaside3, sodium pavoside?” It means nothing, but the USFDA will like it.”
To Dave from Ted: “Good work, Dave. I like it. Can we sell it as ” 50 MG. Take twice a day?” How does $147.50 for 50 tablets sound? How are you doing on the advertising copy? Can you send free samples around to the doctors we’re ‘taking care of’?”
To Ted From Dave: “Your suggestions sound good. I have Mike working on the ad copy. Production says they can manufacture, package and distribute in about a month. “
To Dave from Ted: “Send me Mike’s ad copy. Make any corrections it needs. Let’s get rolling. Restless leg syndrome and attention deficit are getting to be old story.”
To Ted from Dave: “Ted, here is what Mike has come up with for TV: Setting: Major pro baseball game. Stadium filled with thousands, and millions more watching game on TV.”
Camera pans in on pitcher. Pitcher drops ball, and with pained expression starts busily scratching crotch.
Camera pans to cute little blond girl sitting with dad in stands. She turns to dad, ” What’s he doing, daddy?” she asks. Daddy points to huge electronic scoreboard. Camera pans to stadium. Everyone turns head to scoreboard. Score slowly fades out and Tom Hanks fades in wearing a doctor’s coat. He holds up a container of Skratchnix in his left hand, stares down at the field, points with his right hand at pitcher and says,
“Stop that itch with skratchnix!” Spectators in stadium stand and cheer wildly. Blimp circles overhead towing banner>> SKRATCHNIX.
To Dave from Ted: Great work, Dave. Tell the gang they did a great job, and get it rolling. …”Skratchnix”, great! The Board will like it. Oh, by the way, have you delivered that new Mercedes to the head of the USFDA? We’ll need quick approval.
Disclosure: (Reissue> I wrote this in 2005.)