Atlanta Journalist Smacks the CDC

November 3, 2009

Posted by Cort Johnson

The CDC Problem - The CDC attempted to explain away the patients explosion of frustration at their Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) program as the result of a well organized  plot by the CFID’s Association of America.  They haven’t yet come up with a good explanation for the avalanche of criticism visited upon them by the professional community.  Instead of responding to the IACFS/ME, the federal advisory committee on CFS (CFSAC) and numerous professionals they appear to have buckled down to run out the storm.  The storm has been raging for the last year and with Annette Whittemore calling for a Congressional Investigation into anemic federal response to CFS and Dr. Reeves fanning the flames with his comments on ME/CFS patients next big hope,  it doesn’t show any signs of letting up. 

And yet thus far – so far as the patient community can tell - nothing has made any difference.  Dr. Reeves continues to act with impunity, making promises and then breaking them quickly afterwards.  Hilary Johnson’s recent blog exposed considerable dismay among the rank and file at the CDC but there’s no sign yet that administration officials themselves are feeling the heat.

They may be soon. For the first time an investigative journalist has joined the fray.  Jim Walls at Atlanta Mainstream, located in the CDC’s hometown, Atlanta, just raked the CDC’s CFS team over the coals for the pitiful program they’ve run.  In truth he’s just dipped his toes into the murky water that has been the CDC’s CFS research program over the past couple of years. We could really do with a full blown investigative series. Let’s make it happen.

If real change is going to come its going to come now.  Change is coming anyway; the discovery of XMRV, accomplished that but how far that change will go, though, is partially up to us.  Lets bring some heat –  check out the article, give Jim Walls some hits, and leave your comments. Lets give him a reason to start really digging. 

Maybe we can finally get our missing partner – the media – involved in taking a good hard look at the biggest chronic fatigue syndrome program on the planet.

Dig Deeper! CFSAC Pt I: the Art of Evasion


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Sharon S November 4, 2009 at 4:30 am

Bravo again Cort! The media IS out there picking up the stinking trail left behind by Reeves and his band of idiots and thieving contractors. And you are right — we can help the media by shooting them ideas, documents, studies, etc.
I also think WE ALL should be hitting Senator Harry Reid’s office and requesting an investigation into CDC/CFS and Reeves. I know that his office has received several dozen such requests thus far and I was told that it would be dealt with by the Senator as soon as the Health Care Reform issue is put to bed. But, his office is working and looking into the background and allegations for when the Senator starts his own look. So, keep up the heat and send the Senator’s office any and all information and background you have on the CDC/CFS and Reeves. Senator Reid was the GUY on the Hill that took the CDC/CFS program to task over misuse of funding back in 1999, along with the GAO, so he is NOT unaware of their little sleazy tricks. And, with the massive amounts of money going to buildings and non-research things, the CDC is already in big trouble. ABT Associates is also in trouble at another Fed agency for not doing their contractual job and coming in over budget – a major no-no in the Federal contracting world in the analysis (non building/research etc) area. And we are also well aware of the former head of the Emory University Med School/Psych Department making off with several millions of dollars from Big Pharma, speaking fees, etc. and not reporting it. He got fired but not prosecuted. So Emory’s Psych Deparment is also known to have major problems as well. No news there either.
Keep up the good work. And the article you cited was indeed well done. Nice, clean reporting.
Finally, it is rather telling that those CDC people on the site (not assoicated with CDC but allowed by the CDC by law) are aware of the issues with Reeves, his studies and the PR problems he has created for the CDC – which they certainly do not need now. But if you look at the other forum sections, you will also see that the CDC has major moral issues, problems with finding and keeping top notch or even acceptable people and other organizational issues with what I thought were out and out personal attacks. What I saw on the for CFS was NOT what I would call personal attacks, but I guess the webmaster saw it that way. There IS major discored and unhappiness with the CDC staff across the whole CDC and directed AT the CDC/CFS/Reeves program. Rather telling I would say. Apparently Hillary Johnson and several other people believe that this site with its direct hits at the CDC/CFS program says something as well. See for Hillary’s great blog on CFS and the CDC.
Good Work Cort!!! Keep it UP!!!! Sharon S


Roy Snow November 5, 2009 at 8:22 am

I think now is definitely the time to push for congressional hearings. Just before the XMRV news, I wrote about the need for hearings and some advocacy history, including how we got Senator Reid’s increased support long ago. If anybody’s interested, it’s here:


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