The media and what is called the “education” system, calls the shifting of top people in government to corporations and the shift from corporations to top government jobs a “revolving door.”
The door is not “revolving.” America is, according to the definition of Benito Mussolini, who called the merger of state and corporate powers “fascism”… a fascist nation. (And what they call “misinformation” if you refuse to swallow their crap, and are censored by the media… it is “communism.”)
We have noted how the head of the U.S. Department of Defense, Lloyd Austin, was on the board of directors of Raytheon, the second largest defense contractor in the United States before taking the new government job.
The revolving door between the government and the private sector again reared its ugly head last week after it was revealed that a top Food and Drug Administration official whose focus at the agency was on products aimed at suppressing smoking has taken a job with Philip Morris, the multinational tobacco company.
Matt Holman had been on leave during his process of “exploring career opportunities outside the government.”
Nicholas Florko, a Washington correspondent for STAT News, noted that Holman was the head of the FDA tobacco center’s office of science. He called it a “huge role.”
The statement from the agency said Holman worked there for over 20 years and held his most recent post since 2017. The agency said Dr. Benjamin Apelberg and Dr. Todd Cecil will replace Holman until a permanent leader is named.
Philip Morris, which is best known for its cigarettes, also produces e-cigarettes. The Daily Mail reported that Holman, during his tenure at the agency, played a major role in e-cigarette approval.
Micah Berman, an associate professor of public health and law at Ohio State University, told The New York Times that Holman’s departure is “embarrassing for the FDA, which sees itself as a public health agency, to have its employees go to a company that is a leading manufacturer of death.”
TRENDPOST: The Trends Journal has long reported on the revolving door between the government and the private sector. (See “FDA & BIG PHARMA: REVOLVING DOOR KEEPS SPINNING,” “NEW FDA HEAD STUCK IN REVOLVING DOOR” and “FDA? TRY FU! DRUG LORDS IN CONTROL.”
TRENDPOST: Amanda Wheeler, the president of American Vapor Manufacturers and a vape shop owner in Arizona, told Filter magazine that “Holman is not leaving the FDA, he’s escaping.”
“It is hard to avoid the sense that the most serious and essential work on tobacco harm reduction is being done outside of an agency that appears beyond repair,” she said.
TRENDPOST: The relationship between the FDA and the industry it’s charged with regulating is hard to describe without using the term “incestuous”; for example, another former FDA commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, who served from 2017 to 2019, now serves on Pfizer’s board of directors; see “FDA & BIG PHARMA: ONE BIG CLUB” (29 Jun 2021).
Gregory Conley, the president of the American Vaping Association, took to Twitter after reports emerged of Holman’s new job and he mentioned how small business vape manufacturers on Reddit took issue with the appointment.
“The man who signed a letter last year telling me that my products were not appropriate for the protection of public health is now working for one of the largest tobacco manufacturers in the world. Let that sink in,” one person posted.
Conley was likely referring to the Marketing Denial Orders Holman signed that were called “death warrants” for thousands of small businesses and vape shops.
Clive Bates, the editor at The Counterfactual, who supported Holman’s decision, said there could be criticism because now Holman wants to work for “the big companies that profit from the brutal barriers to entry imposed by FDA.”
He mentioned potential conflicts of interests.
“Have you improperly moved from the regulator to the regulated? That is, from gamekeeper to poacher? I don’t think we should dwell on this for long,” Bates wrote. “As I understand it, there are strict government guidelines about standing down when you begin a job search and staying apart for two years when you move from a government job to a business with significant interactions with the department you worked in. This sort of move is normal, given the skills overlap. I assume the rules were followed to the letter and in spirit.”