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"FIDDAMAN BLOG" - 5 new articles

  1. Emily Patterson - The Homeless Activist
  2. Psychiatry Going All Monty Python!
  3. Q&A With Musician Kirk Brandon
  4. Paxil Birth Defects: GSK Attorney Sinks to New Low
  5. Q&A With My Dad
  6. More Recent Articles
  8. Prior Mailing Archive

Emily Patterson - The Homeless Activist

I don't like seeing people living on the street ~ usually it stems from heartache or, in many cases, addiction that has led to loss of jobs, relationship breakdowns etc.

I don't like seeing 'one of our own' on the streets, particularly when they fight for justice, not for themselves but for other people.

Let me introduce one such person to you all.

Emily Patterson is a 48 year-old American woman who, for a number of years, has targeted the nefarious practices of pharmaceutical giant, Johnson & Johnson. She does so because she, like many other activists, myself included, have witnessed, and continue to witness, an injustice.

Some years ago Emily was working on a project for her website, Sunflower Naturals. Emily had, through her own research, discovered that lots of products on the shelves of many stores contained known toxins. Her first article related to many of these known toxins and she was contacted by victims of other products and realized just how large the problem with unsafe healthcare products had become. After participating in numerous advocacy campaigns by non-profits for over 20 years to get known toxins out of consumer goods Emily decided to to use what she had learned.

Ergo, Johnson & Toxin was born, a website that highlights Johnson & Johnson's activity, much of which that goes unreported in the mainstream media.. Emily's mission, she told me is, "If we can achieve cleaning the corruption out of Johnson & Johnson, their products will be safe globally, and all other pharmaceutical companies will have to follow suit to remain competitive."

Sadly, for Emily, she is homeless, drifting from place to place, scrimping and saving just to line her stomach with sustenance provided by food stamps. She is currently living on a beach in Florida, a blanket and tarpaulin her only source of shelter. (Fig 1) - A description of events that led to Emily losing her home can be found here.

Fig 1

Tenacious as ever, Emily still continues to target Johnson & Johnson and today (28 April) she intends to gatecrash a J&J shareholder meeting. She writes...

Johnson & Johnson Annual Shareholder Meeting is on Thursday, April 28th, 2016 at 10 AM. I'm sure every single one of us is looking forward to this Bee Ess Fest, with our beloved criminal CEO and Chairman of the Board, Alex Gorsky. He brought us global lawsuits, I mean products like, Risperdal to put boobs on boys and suck Medicaid dry through fraud. Gorsky also brought us other wonderful lawsuits, I mean products, such as Transvaginal Mesh, which turns vaginas into cheesegraters - a real turn-on for Viagra addicts, eh? And let's not forget his awesome all-metal hip lawsuits, I mean products, making your insides rot from metalosis before you are even dead. excellent way to die, ya think?
I'm wondering if maybe, this year at the Johnson & Johnson Shareholder Meeting, well-respected (well, unless you hate bankers), global leaders in finance, healthcare and supposed support for human health (well, since it includes their own, eh?), gather to be bullshitted by professional bullshitters like Alex Gorsky and Domsadick Caruso, will consider asking some real questions. Here are a few for starters:
1. When will Johnson & Johnson be required to, or grow a conscience and willingly, remove all body powder intended for women and baby girls, containing talc, which obviously dramatically increases the risk of developing killer ovarian cancer, from the shelves of physical and virtual stores of the United States?
2. When will the United States Justice Department do as requested and conduct a thorough investigation into the histories of Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky and Johnson & Johnson CFO Dominic Caruso?
3. How does Johnson & Johnson intend to repay institutional investors for lost revenue due to foreclosures, loan defaults, etc of injured/dead victims of known harmful Johnson & Johnson products.

Remember, Emily, unlike me, has never been harmed by a pharmaceutical product. She does this on behalf of the many thousands (possibly millions) that have. For that she has my utmost respect and to see her homeless is deeply saddening.

During her time advocating for the likes of you and I Emily has been contacted by Johnson & Johnson present and past employees who have had issues with certain managers. Her website is a valuable source of information and is viewed by many thousands each day.

Her mission, for the present time at least, is to target J&J shareholders. She told me...

"I realized a few years ago that shareholders don't necessarily know Johnson & Johnson products are not safe. The are told the lawsuits are frivolous and are truthfully, just more focused on numbers, not all the drama. Shareholders call victims a cost of doing business. In a way, I would agree with that, except the injuries are extreme and severe with known harmful products still on the market. I believe that shareholders will consider forcing change in the pharmaceutical industry when they realize that victims are piling up globally, and the victims are also their customers. As more bank customers become disabled and dead from known harmful Johnson & Johnson (and other pharmaceutical company) products, banks suffer the loss since disabled and dead people cannot pay mortgages, repay loans or repay credit. If I can get global investors like Vanguard to look at the *numbers*, how much money is going out the back door and not coming back in, we have a good chance of shareholders protecting their vested interest: the health and safety of their customers. They might even realize these are their products also, and decide it's in their personal best interest to ensure their own safety."

Emily has been homeless since June 17th 2011 after losing her Pennsylvania home. She has skills that would put most of us to shame, being a website developer and having worked, in the past, for Google and Yahoo.

Despite the unpleasantness of living each day hand-to-mouth Emily still remains upbeat. She told me, "All these skills and no one wants to hire me. Doing what I can until something breaks for me. I believe everything is preordained, things will change when they are supposed to."

I have to take my hat off to Ms Patterson. I salute her.

Her website, Johnson & Toxin, can be found here and you can follow her on Twitter here.

Please support her in any way you can. The world needs more people like Emily Patterson.

Bob Fiddaman.


Psychiatry Going All Monty Python!

It's been a strange week, for me at least. First, my beloved Aston Villa were relegated from the Premier League into the Championship ~ I was going to write my thoughts on it but so many have already done that, besides I've become disillusioned with modern day football over the years ~ inflated ego's kicking an inflated pig bladder over grass doesn't really appeal to me anymore. I'd rather watch a goldfish swimming around a fish bowl or, better still, use Canadian dwarfs as tenpins whilst bowling tennis balls down a shiny alley to knock them over. (that's a personal joke so, puhleeease, no hate-mail)

Next, I hear that Axl Rose has joined AC/DC and will take over vocal duties from Brian Johnson who is having problems with his hearing ~ I was going to offer my thoughts on this too, again, so many have already done that. Besides, despite being a fan since 1978 and seeing them perform live more times than I can remember, last year was my farewell to them. Wembley stadium was packed with fans, the majority of whom being there because it was "fashionable" to see AC/DC. I can't sit with those type of people anymore.

Then came along something that sent me into a state of apoplexy. It's the latest from the field of psychiatry that had me biting the leg of the chair in efforts to control my hysterical laughter, much to the bemusement of the old lady sitting next to me on the bus (I jest)

The headline comes from Medscape, an online magazine aimed at professionals in the field of medicine, it reads, "Undetected ADHD May Explain Poor SSRI Response in Depression."

Okay, okay, calm down folks. Sometimes headlines can be misleading. Let's just take a look at the article more closely.

The research cited in the article was  presented at the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) Conference 2016. (Plenty of chair leg biters present) and was, according to Tia Sternat, Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program, University of Toronto, the result of "collected data from 123 referrals to a single tertiary-care mood and anxiety clinic. The mean age of patients was 39.8 years; ages ranged from 17 to 71 years. A total of 105 patients were included in the final analysis."

The  diagnosis was performed using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview Plus 5.0.0.

So, no brain scans, blood samples, urine tests?

Just an "interview"


It gets better. Here's Tia Sternat again...

"...symptoms of ADHD morph as people age, and what happens is that they'll end up with treatment-resistant depression or anxiety," she said.

The article finishes with...

"Tia Sternat has disclosed no relevant financial relationships."

So, not the same Tia Sternat who was once employed by Janssen Inc and who is a business learning manager at Pfizer then?

Honestly, what a load of codswallop!

Here we have a situation where antidepressants are not working so, let's not blame the antidepressant, let's blame the patient, furthermore, let's tell the patient that the reason the medication doesn't seem to be working is because they have an underlying mental illness that cannot be seen on any modern day scan or through blood or urine samples...but they have it because the answers they gave in a questionnaire proves this.

Talking snakes, fig leaves and apples, anyone?

Now, the majority of my Facebook and Twitter friends won't even read this when I post the link, they may leave a comment on social media and, in general, it will be something along the lines of "Crazy" or "Madness", even "Stupid morons" may even make comment sections?

What we have here is an apparent medical 'profession'  (I invert the word with comma's because to be professional you really should be good at something) who have had to come up with a reason why prescriptions they dish out don't work. It's not the drug, it's the patient, let's find a way that we can convince fellow professionals that ADHD is laying dormant in this particular group of patients and then let's show our findings to all those gathered (fellow psychiatrists) at the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) Conference 2016.

I'm wondering if the presentation was greeted with enthusiastic applause or if it was greeted by open-mouths and fellow 'professionals' staring into the abyss (Oops, first sign of ADHD folks)

It reminds me of the famous Monty Python parrot sketch. Customer buys parrot ~ takes parrot home ~ realises said parrot is dead ~ returns it to shop only to be told that it's not dead, it's sleeping. Not the purchase ~ it's the customer, which is, in essence, what we all are to the white-coated brigade.

Psychiatry really shoots itself in the foot with this kind of research, particularly when using pens and paper as a means to determine if someone has a disease in their brain. They may as well determine mental disorders by playing 'pick-up sticks with your butt cheeks.' One who picks the least sticks up has Bumpolar or Attention Buttcheek Disorder (ABCD)

What a clusterfuck!

Bob Fiddaman.


Q&A With Musician Kirk Brandon

Singer/songwriter and generally all-round thoroughly nice chap, Kirk Brandon, has kindly responded to a Q&A I sent him. Kirk is currently on tour around the UK with his band, Spear of Destiny, so a big thank you for taking time out and answering the questions I put to him.

Kirk's experience of Seroxat mirrors that of many others and it's unusual for someone in the music business who actually has the gumption to come out and speak about it all. Speaking out about any product manufactured by pharmaceutical companies brings threats of lawsuits, particularly when that person happens to be in the public eye. Kirk's attitude is, seemingly, a middle finger salute to the likes of GSK ~ Something that has to be applauded.

I, like Kirk, experienced horrific withdrawal at the hands of Seroxat ~ I decided to write a blog (and later a book). Kirk wrote a song about Seroxat (video at foot of his Q&A's) ~ it's a song that resonates and one can hear the passion through the lyrics and delivery.

Kirk and I met a few years ago. He was playing a gig in my hometown and we chewed the cud before he hit the stage ~ I'm sure we will meet again at some point in the near future, hopefully shoot some pool, have a few drinks and chew the cud some more. Who knows, maybe even set the seeds for some sort of awareness gig,? Sometimes an apathetic public need music in their lives to drive home the message. The music industry needs more lions with courage, it needs more Kirk Brandon's.

**Hands Holy lance to Mr. Brandon**

Here's the Q&A

Full name: Kirk Brandon
Age: 59
Location: Brighton/London

Q: Kirk, first off, thanks for taking time out for this Q&A with me. I know you're currently on tour with your band. Can you tell me about your projects of late, ie; Spear of Destiny, Theatre of Hate, your project with Sam Sansbury and also if you plan to record and tour with Dead Men Walking again?

A:  Currently on tour with Spear of Destiny. A band I have had since 1983.

Later this year, November I believe we are releasing a new album of Theatre of Hate music. This album has been over 9 years in the making. Theatre of Hate pre dates Spear by 2 years. We'll also play a handful of shows at its launch.

Apart from this, I have recently taken up a new endevour, a recording and tour of myself on acoustic guitar accompanied by cellist Sam Sansbury. The success of this has actually surprised us all. It has been a very new way of interpreting the music I have written. We will do some more live shows later in the year.


Q: Tell me about your experience with Seroxat (Paxil)

A:Seroxat came at my very lowest point in my life. I went to the Dr and asked to speak and talk things through with someone but instead he put me on Seroxat. I took it for 10 months until ultimately going 'cold turkey' from it as it is highly addictive.

After initially taking it, I quite quickly entered a hallucinogenic world. This was pretty scary a place to find yourself. I saw things that obviously were impossible and experienced thoughts and emotions I had never experienced before. At one point I felt I was possibly becoming insane. The things I felt and saw were things I had never before or since experienced. It was the drug without doubt.

On two occasions I contemplated suicide on a very serious level, but realised that I could not do this to my two year old daughter and mar her very young life.

Alongside these traumatic thoughts and feelings I was overwhelmed with feelings of rage. I contemplated murdering people and it's my belief that at the end, when I went through the truly harrowing experience of cold turkey, I was in fact a short time away from actually killing people.


Q: Your album, 'Dutch Masters The Story So Far - II', featured a track called 'Seroxat', the lyrics are very powerful. Can you tell me what prompted you to write this?

A: I wrote the song 'Seroxat' as way of telling people of the dangers of addiction to the drug and also as a message to GSK. I knew they would view the song as an irrelevance as they would me but, the public need as dire a warning as possible on the subject of Seroxat. People kill themselves on it and kill other people as well. Especially in America where guns are easily accessible.


Q: Do you know many people in the music business who are unaware of the side effects that drugs, such as Seroxat, can cause?

A. I do meet people, musicians who have have had their brains and lives altered by the drug Seroxat. Generally people tend to find out about it only after having taken it.


Q: This question is in two parts Kirk, would you ever consider doing a benefit gig for victims of Seroxat and other antidepressant-type drugs and do you think that by raising awareness through the medium of music is a way forward with regard to holding pharmaceutical companies accountable for unsafe and potentially dangerous drugs they manufacture?

A:  A concert for the dangers/awareness of Seroxat? Yes, absolutely.

The public need an awareness of the frightening consequences of taking this mind bending drug.
As for the pharmaceutical giant GSK, again yes. Their sinister policies/practises especially with this drug needs exposure.


Q: You have a pretty huge fan base, would you say that the majority of your fans know about your struggles with Seroxat?

A: I think they know I went through a very bad experience with the drug, yes. They know I have very strong feelings on the subject.


Q: Would you recommend writing a blog or public diary to people who had suffered severed antidepressant withdrawal events?

A:  Yes. It may help with life after Seroxat addiction and act as a warning to others that even at low points in their lives, to stay well away from this hallucinogenic terrifying drug.


Q: Do you have any more songs in the pipeline that have either Seroxat or GlaxoSmithKline as the subject matter?

A.  At the moment no.


Q: Have you ever considered writing a book about your time and subsequent struggle with Seroxat?

A. This part of my life is well documented in my memoires I am currently finishing up on.


Q: What do you say to people who believe that antidepressants are safe and effective?

A. If they are safe, explain the suicides and violence done whilst people have taken the drug. If a flag doesn't come then these people are blindly leading themselves into a hell world, easily accessible but ultimately extremely difficult to escape from.


Q: If you could ask GSK's Andrew Witty three questions what would they be?

A.  Would he give Seroxat to his own children? As his company once recommended to Dr's via their reps?

Does he believe drug induced suicide is viable as company policy?

What will he personally do for atonement for the deaths of people on his watch as steward of GSK?


Q: Do you think that Seroxat and other SSRis need to be banned or do you feel that they do benefit some people? 

A. Ban them immediately. Release all data from the companies into the public domain.


Q: What is your opinion with regard to the way prescription drugs are regulated in the UK, do you think the British drug regulator, the MHRA, are doing enough to protect patients from harmful drugs?

A. The MHRA are not fulfilling their purpose if no action is taken regarding Seroxat and GSK.
An investigation should be launched into all policy regarding GSK by them. An independent governmental one.


Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

A. I hope still alive.


Q: Finally Kirk, some personal questions...

1. What book are you currently reading?
The Greek Tragedies

2. What was the last CD you listened to (in full)?
'Blackhawk Down' from the film

3. What is the best movie you have seen this year?
Any good 'space film'.

4. What country would you most like to visit?
America again

5. If you had the choice of being either a defence or prosecution lawyer, which would you choose and why?

Questions need answers. The public needs information. Accountability.

Kirk's website -

Kirk Brandon - Seroxat


Bob Fiddaman.

Previous Q&A's

Q&A With Ablechild's Sheila Matthews-Gallo

Q&A With Leonie Fennell

Q&A With the "Truthman"

10 Years of Blogging - Q&A With Neil Carlin

Q&A With My Dad


Paxil Birth Defects: GSK Attorney Sinks to New Low

Todd Davis ~ remember the name. Davis is an attorney who has represented GlaxoSmithKline on numerous occasions. He is employed by King & Spalding.

On with the story...

Elisabeth Balzer took Paxil while pregnant. Her son, Braden, was born with tetralogy of fallot (a combination of four heart defects). A  cardiologist expert witness, Dr. Ra-id Abdulla, testified that a review of Braden Rader’s and his mother’s medical records showed that Braden’s heart defects was related to exposure to Paxil during his mother’s pregnancy. Abdulla also pointed out (under cross-examination) that the American Heart Association has already “assessed, documented, and judged” the existence of a causal link between Paxil and heart defects.

Braden has already been through two heart surgeries, one several months after his birth and the second just last year.

A few days later it was the turn of Braden's mother, Elisabeth, to take the stand. Elizabeth began speaking of her emotional response to Braden undergoing open-heart surgery as an infant. Immediately Glaxo's counsel objected, moreover, Todd Davis argued that Balzer did not have valid claims for any pain, suffering or emotional distress she may have had as a result of her son’s injury.

Using Mississippi state law, Davis said, “She didn’t know that the injury happened to Braden. It occurred during the first trimester. There’s no way she could have any physical impact from an injury that she didn’t know had occurred.”

Balzer’s lawyer, James Morris Jr, of Morris Law Firm, responded by saying,  “What could be more shocking or upsetting to a woman than to be advised that your baby has a birth defect? To talk about her as if she was a bystander is ridiculous. This child was inside her when the defect occurred. It was delivered, her own child, with the defect. I’m shocked that that type of argument would even be made. If the appellate courts and the Supreme Court want to go with Mr. Davis’s theory then I really regret where this country is headed.”

The outcome?

Judge Kenneth Powell, who was presiding over matters, sided with GSK's counsel. Powell said, "I will not permit the plaintiff to testify about physical injury or physical manifestations or anything that denotes pain and suffering” in front of the jury."

A week or so later Balzer had her case against GSK dismissed in yet, it has to be said, more bizarre circumstances/ reasons given by Judge Kenneth Powell. Judge Powell found that Dr. Robert Kiehn’s (Elizabeth's prescribing physician) testimony did not include an important detail: that he would have refrained from prescribing Paxil to the pregnant Mrs. Balzer had he been given more adequate warnings of the possible risks.

However, another of Balzer’s lawyers, Adam Peavy of Bailey Peavy Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC, disagreed, he said, “To suggest that the question was never asked is not accurate. It was asked multiple times about what he would’ve done with a different warning, or if he was warned about Paxil causing birth defects. Your honor excluded that evidence.”

So, to recap.

Elizabeth Balzer's prescribing physician was asked numerous times during deposition whether or not he would have prescribed Paxil to her had a warning of birth defects being caused by Paxil would have, at the time, been available to him.

Judge Powell excluded this part of the testimony.

Powell then rules in favour of GSK by claiming that there was no evidence to show that Balzer's treating physician would have prescribed her Paxil had he have known about the Paxil birth defect link ~ of course there wasn't any evidence, the Judge himself had, previously in the trial, excluded it from being heard!

Adam Peavy of Bailey Peavy Bailey Cowan Heckaman in Houston, who represented Rader, said he plans to appeal.

This isn't the first time Davis has made claims that people under deposition or on the stand couldn't have "possibly known." In 2007 Davis also tried to use the "Couldn't have known" argument, this time, however, he was protecting Sally K. Laden, a ghostwriter for GSK. Once again, the drug in question was Paxil. (Back story)

Hats off to Todd Davis of King & Spalding. He really earned his corn on this one ~ he used the Mississippi law to Glaxo's advantage.

Hats off too to whatever religious belief Davis follows. It must be wonderful to have a doctrine whereby mothers aren't permitted to show any form of emotion when discussing their child's birth defects. Who knows, maybe Davis is an atheist?

I take it that a Bible was sworn on at some point during these proceedings? I'd just like to know where in the Bible it states that "Thou shalt not show emotions if they are female."

Kudos too to Judge Kenneth Powell who should be awarded with the 'Short-Term Memory of the Year Award.'

Bob Fiddaman.


Legal Reader


The Legal Inteligencer


Ryan, Glaxo's Non-Viable Fetus - Part I

Ryan, Glaxo's Non-Viable Fetus - Part II - The Twists


Q&A With My Dad

As part of the 10 year celebrations of this blog I've been asking people who have been part of my journey to take part in a Q&A session with me. My dad (above) has obviously been a part of that journey. Dad visits and stays with me once every three weeks (depending on if my grandchildren are staying) ~ he's become quite popular down my local, one customer, and friend, Linda, always gives him a kiss when she sees him, she even buys him boxes of ready-made porridge. Her boyfriend, Jordan, refers to my dad as "sir", such is the respect they hold for him.

Dad, sadly, lost my mom a few years back - obviously we were all devastated by her death, none more so than dad as he and mom were just one year shy of their 50th wedding anniversary.

Dad was born and raised in Birmingham during a period when times were hard, bread and dripping being part of the staple diet back then. He always tells me that he is proud of the work I do - for that I am eternally grateful.

Here's my dad.

Full name: Douglas Richard Fiddaman
Age: 83
Location: Alcester, Warwickshire

Q: Dad, has you way of thinking about pharmaceutical companies and their wares changed since I became an advocate/activist?

A:  As far as antidepressants go, yes. I never really understood exactly how many people were prescribed these types of drugs until you brought it to my attention.


Q: When you were young how was depression viewed?

A: You just got over it, you know, people would say, "You'll be alright" ~ and we did. We didn't have much back then, we made our own entertainment. Depression was pretty much kicked into the curb with an arm around the shoulder and words of encouragement. There was no medicine for it.

Q: Do you believe that people who are depressed have a disease of the brain?

A: I wouldn't have thought so, there's nothing to suggest that they do. There are varying degrees of depression but I don't believe it's a disease of the brain.

Q: When mom died you went through a period of mourning. Many people are given antidepressants when they are mourning ~ did you consider this option, if not, why?

A: No, mourning is a process that you just go through. It took a long time to get over your mom's death. I still get sad moments, I think about her every day, she's been gone 8 years now. It's inevitable that everyone will experience a state of mourning in their lives - you don't need antidepressants, you just need time.


Q: Have you, at any time in your life, been offered antidepressants by a healthcare professional?

A: No.


Q: What is your claim to fame?

A: I once met Ian Carmichael, the actor, John Slater, another actor, and Billie Holliday, the blues singer. I was a night porter working in a hotel (see pic below) and I was told to  take a drink up to her room. A man came to the door, she was in bed, she was the worse for wear - she looked up from her bed and acknowledged me. I didn't know who she was at the time.


Q: Who or what do you think is responsible when someone dies as an adverse reaction to a prescription drug?

A: If it's a prescription drug then the company that produce that drug should be called into question as should the healthcare professional who prescribed it.


Q: Difficult question, but what is your fondest memory of mom?

A: Your mom always had my interests at heart, always looked after me, we never argued about money. I knew 100% that I was loved by your mom, there are not many people who can say that. So, my fondest memory, I guess, would be that. I knew that she loved me 100% and I was very grateful for that.


Q: Finally Dad, some personal questions...

1. What book are you currently reading?

A: Webster's International Encyclopedia, specifically about the US states.

2. What was the last CD you listened to (in full)?

A: A compilation of Irish artists - Noreen Bawn being my favourite song.

3. What is the best movie you have seen this year?

A: Wild with Reese Witherspoon

4. What country would you most like to visit?

A: Germany because that's where the Fiddaman name comes from.

5. Do you believe in life after death?

A: I am open-minded, I don't believe that there is but I would never say for sure that I am right.

Bob Fiddaman.

Previous Q&A's

Q&A With Ablechild's Sheila Matthews-Gallo

Q&A With Leonie Fennell

Q&A With the "Truthman"

10 Years of Blogging - Q&A With Neil Carlin

More Recent Articles

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