"Reflections of Former Assistant Secretaries of Health"

Meeting of: Secretary's Council on National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2010. Sep. 12, 2000 Proceedings: James Mason, Julius Richmond, Edward Brandt Jr, Robert Windom, Philip Lee, with the current Assistant Secretary, David Satcher.

Says former Assistant Secretary for Health James Mason (basking in undeserved glory for successes of medicine not health fascism): "In reflecting on the past, I think our success is largely due to this being, as you have already mentioned, a non-political, non-partisan activity. It started under the Carter administration, Julie Richmond, and then it flowed smoothly during the Reagan, Bush, to the present Clinton era, and it has continued unabated by changes and politics or partisanship. I think if we are going to have the kind of success that we have had in the past, it is absolutely imperative that this non-partisan background for Healthy People continues. It doesn't matter which party is in power in Congress or the White House; this has to go on, because continuity is fundamental to this kind of success." In other words, both parties have screwed us, and just let these deluded fascists spew their corrupt pseudo-science and do as they damn please.

Julius Richmond (likewise taking false credit): "There was a feeling that the non-infectious diseases, largely multi-factorial in their genesis [SIC], really could not be touched. But as one of our late colleagues, who was one of the founders of the IOM, Dr. Walsh McDermott, was fond of saying, while nobody was looking, we began to see a very significant reduction in mortality from heart disease and stroke. This rang a bell. We said, well, if we can do this with these multi-factorial diseases, why can't we do this across the board?"

[In fact, death rates from stroke began falling in the early 1950s, long before any organized effort began. And heart attack deaths began falling around 1965, among all age groups, races, and both sexes, including among smokers, despite the fact that the general population had not embraced so-called healthy lifestyles. Furthermore, those who were born in the 1930s never experienced death rates in young adulthood as high as those who were born earlier. And the fact that the proportion of deaths that occur before the victim reaches the hospital proves that the decline has been due to a reduction in new cases, not to improved treatment.]

The Rise and Fall of Ischemic Heart Disease, by Reuel A. Stallones. Scientific American, Nov. 1980. He notes that supposed "explanations" such as diet, exercise, and smoking do not account for the changes in the death rates. It includes graphs of death rates by age beginning in the 1800s, and showing the increase that began around 1920.

Stallones - Scientific American 1980 / UCSF-Legacy

"Now, in order to do this, we drew very, very heavily on, of course, the research base, the knowledge base that is so critical, of the NIH. Ruth Kirschstein, who is here, played a continuing role in that process, in keeping NIH actively involved, and the CDC, and particularly the Center for Health Statistics, which I keep saying is our directional compass that really tells us what directions we ought to be going in." SIC.

"Agenda Item: Reflections of Former Assistant Secretaries for Health" / Health.gov
Dates of Office of DHHS Assistant Secretaries for Health / DHHS

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cast 10-30-05