Published in the Asbury Park Press 12/05/04
By RICHARD SINE
GANNETT NEWS SERVICE
WHEN CONSUMERS COMPLAIN about the high price of medicines, drug makers often respond by citing the high cost of developing those drugs.
But AstraZeneca spends twice as much on marketing and overhead as it does on drug development.
Industry critics cited heartburn drug Nexium, the company's top-selling drug, as the quintessential example of a triumph of marketing over medicine. Many physicians say Nexium is virtually the same drug as some competing drugs that cost much less. A lawsuit filed last month by insurance providers claims AstraZeneca has deceived customers into wasting billions on "the new purple pill
"AstraZeneca is a striking example of how large pharmaceutical companies have moved so far in the direction of pouring money into promotion at the expense of innovation and the actual development of new products," said Dr. Jerry Avorn, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard University.
At about $4 a pill, Nexium costs about six times more than over-the-counter Prilosec. Claims that Nexium is superior are based, in part, on clinical trials in which larger doses of Nexium were compared to smaller Prilosec doses.
The comparison spurred Thomas Scully, former head of the federal agency that administers Medicare, to tell doctors at a conference last year, "You should be embarrassed if you prescribe Nexium."
Industry critic Dr. Marcia Angell, a former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine and author of "The Truth About the Drug Companies," said newer, more expensive and more advertised drugs are often no more effective than older, generic drugs.
"I think the creation of Nexium, along with the massive promotional campaign to switch Prilosec users to it, was one of the more cynical of drug company gambits".
Was checking to make sure you were a paid basher or not. . .how many of these rules do you follow?
Rules for Successful Bashing:
1. Be anonymous
2. Use 10% fact. 90% suggestion. The facts will lend credibility to your suggestions.
3. Let others help you learn about the stock. Build rapport and a
support base before initiating your Bashing routine.
4. Enter w/ humor and reply to all who reply to you.
5. Use multiple ISP's, handles and aliases.
6. Use two (2) or more aliases to simulate a discussion.
7. Do not start with an all out slam of the stock. Build softly.
8. Identify your foes (Longs) and the boards "guru" Use them to
your advantage. Lead them do not follow their lead.
9. Only Bash until the tide/momentum turns. Let doubt carry it the
rest of the way.
10. Give the appearance of being open minded.
11. Be bold in your statements. People follow strength.
12. Write headlines in caps with catchy statements.
13. Pour it on as your position gains momentum. Not your personality.
14. Don't worry about being labeled a "Basher". Newbies won't
know your history.
15. When identified put up a brief fight, then back off. Return in an hour unless your foe is a weak in reasoning powers.
16. Your goal is to limit the momentum of the run. Not to tank the
company or create a plunge in the stock; be subtle and consistent.
17. Kill the dreams of profits, not the company or the stock.
18. Use questions to create critical thinking. Statements to
19. DO NOT LIE, NAME CALL or USE PROFANITY.
20. Encourage people to call the company. 99% won't. They'll take your word for claims made. If they do call you can always find something that is inaccurate in how they report their findings.
21. Discourage people from believing Press Releases.
Encourage them to call the company. They won't out of laziness.
22. If the companies history/PR's are negative constantly point to that. Compile a list of this data prior to beginning your efforts.
23. If the price rises blame it on the hype or the PR, temporary
mass reaction, the market, etc. Anything but the stock itself.
24. If other posters share your concerns, play on that and share theirs too.
25. Always cite low volume, even when it's not.
26. Three or four aliases can dominate a board and wear down the longs.
27. Bait the Longs into personal debates putting their
focus/efforts on you and not the stock or facts. Divert their attention from facts.
28. Promote other stocks that would-be investors can turn to
instead of the one your Bashing.
30. Do not fall for challenges on the "values" of what you are doing, it's a game and you are playing it with your own rules.
Determine the facts,
<Cafepharma.com> is a sounding board for the entire pharma world.
AZ has more than twice as many postings as any other company, and almost as many as allof the other pharma companies combined. Of the over 50,000 AZ postings, approximately 90% are negative to the management. The reasons are varied, but the message is overwhelming.
Read for yourself!
Funny. . .you speak of distaste for the company, will emphatically verbalize your troubles and in an attempt to slander the company that feeds you, you offer little substance to the dribble of lame posts. As a forum for investors I would doubt anyone here has the ablilty to alter the price of the stock. Where am I going. . .what is your point? Either post informative information like "AZN's purchase of . . . is detrimental b/c of. . ." or take a hint. If you haven't noticed there aren't many people taking your side, in fact most have laughed at your banter.
By the way. . .is a copied post from CafePharma suppose to represent the sentment of all, some or most of the AZN employees? What a joke.
I appreciate your sincerity, and yes, even though I have worked for AZ for many years, and will for a while longer, I do harbor a great deal of disrespect for the company. Why do I still work there? Because I spent many years doing the right thing for a decent company and earning a good living doing just that.
However, after the acquisition of Astra by Zeneca, everything changed. Good became bad, and everything that you may have read in over 50,000 employee posts on cafepharma happened.
AZ became the cruelest and most deceitful company in the business, cheating not only its'own employees, but the public as well. Management stole from it's own peoples bonuses and perks that were promised to them, denigrated their senior employees and tried to force out as many as possible, lowered its' standards on hiring in order to lower salaries, fired any employee that showed any initiative (they demanded zombies rather than salepeople ...and got them); and even worse, they cheated and lied on their portfolio products to the FDA and the public.
My goal is not to "get back" at AZ, it is to expose their lies and miseries that they have committed on so many. I can't possibly understand why anyone would invest in this misery of a company, that is out to rape its' employees and the American public, when there are so many other and better companies to invest in.
I am only here until I retire. I've invested too much time and energy to go elsewhere at this point. But, I will go on and on with my plight, not out of revenge, but out of concern for my fellow Americans and my mates at AZ.
Admix, I have no doubt you are an AZ employee. I am sure it makes you mad that things you always thought were contrary to good business are proving effective. The simple fact is that this regime is successful doing it their way. You belong on the CafePharma site. That site is for complainers, no-one else. It's not a communication forum. It's to name people who other people hate, and gossip about them. This is an investment forum. I hope 2006 gives you some peace. I hope you don't have to display your misery until your rule of 80 kicks in. Let it be soon.
Keep posting your cafepharma.com junk but try to grow up.
As a favor to the rest of the board(not me) can you please not post profanity on this message board. Kids don't need a password to view this site.
He/She says they are trapped? What does that mean?
BTW I see you posted the message number but the subject string name would help others to view the context of the "Anonymous "(ha ha) poster
Happy New Year.
A holiday greeting from another AZ employee (definitely not me), expressing the typical feeling of most AZ employees at this time of year:
#1169372 - 12/24/05 05:23 PM Edit Reply Quote Quick Reply
For the others who are trapped like me in this hell, best wishes for a prosperous new year of getting the hell out of this salt mine.
For the believers,