Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Treatment Action Committee wins case against the notorious Dr. Rath

South Africa's Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) is one of the world's best known and most successful AIDS activist groups. TAC was instrumental in leading the fight against the ridiculous lawsuit that 39 pharmaceutical companies brought against the South African government in 1998 to stop the government from making cheaper, generic AIDS medicines available in their country. That time, the pharmaceutical companies backed down, and the issue never made it to the court.

It is no small irony then that TAC has been recently accused of being lackeys for the pharmaceutic world. The delightfully named Dr. Rath, of the Rath Foundation, put out full page ads in the New York Times last summer that stated (besides the usual stuff about the toxicity of anti-retroviral drugs and the wonderful healing powers of vitamins produced by the Rath Foundation) that the TAC was actually being funded by pharmaceutical companies, and that was the dark reason why TAC was pushing for universal access to AIDS treatment. It seems that for Dr. Rath, either you are with him, or you are with the pharmaceutical mafia.

The South African court has told Dr. Rath to cease his ad campaign. TAC is gearing up to hit the Rath Foundation with a full defamation lawsuit.