Apr 042019

RELATED:    2018-08-18   SIGNIFICANCE EXPLAINED: U of Saskatchewan taken to Court, Refuses to disclose Right to Know symposium proceedings

The Newsweek story is related to the court case against the U of Saskatchewan.  Prof Stuart Smyth is the Bayer-Monsanto mouthpiece.

It is curious to me that Newsweek would publish the article and not disclose the industry connections of the authors.

Newsweek, like most magazines, would be challenged by today’s media environment.   It is not what it once was.  Its name is its most valuable asset.   I googled – –  from info disclosed through a court case,  Newsweek is in rough financial straits.  So is it desperation, vulnerability that leads to the jettison of values?  I wonder who owns it now?

I think it just put another nail in its coffin.

A glimpse into its internal workings:  The district attorney for Manhattan, Cyrus Vance Jr brought fraud charges against Newsweek and IBT Media in Oct 2018.    (URL below)  According to the charges, the two media companies — IBT Media, which owned Newsweek, and Christian Media, a faith-based online publisher in Washington — obtained loans from banks to purchase high-end computer servers. Instead, most of the money was funneled back to accounts controlled by the two media companies and their principals — Etienne Uzac, a co-founder of IBT, and William Anderson, Christian Media’s former chief executive and publisher — to make payments on other loans to maintain Newsweek’s credit profile, the indictment said.

The defendants also provided false information to the banks, including financial statements audited by a fictitious accountant for which they created a fake website, phone number, and email address, according to the charges.  



Newsweek failed to disclose chemical industry connections of

opinion writers who argued that glyphosate (Monsanto’s Roundup) can’t be regulated.

Stuart Smyth and another advocate for the agrichemical industry, Henry I. Miller, had this op-ed piece published in Newsweek magazine:   “The Campaign for Organic Food is a Deceitful, Expensive Scam”


Newsweek Gets Ad Money from Bayer, Prints Op-Eds That Help Bayer

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Newsweek failed to disclose the chemical industry connections of two opinion writers who argued today in an op-ed that glyphosate can’t be regulated. The commentary by Henry I. Miller and Stuart Smyth, both of whom have ties to Monsanto that were not disclosed in the piece, appeared soon after a federal jury handed cancer victim Edwin Hardeman an $80 million verdict against Monsanto (now Bayer), and said the company’s glyphosate-based Roundup herbicide was a “substantial factor” in causing Hardeman’s cancer.

Last year, we complained to Newsweek’s opinion editor about an op-ed Dr. Miller wrote attacking the organic industry that was based on pesticide industry sources and didn’t disclose Miller’s Monsanto ties. See our bizarre email exchange with the editor, Nicholas Wapshott, in which he declined to inform readers about the conflicts of interest. Wapshott is no longer at Newsweek, but Miller’s organic food attack still appears there, and today it was surrounded by Bayer advertisements promoting glyphosate.

Bayer ads surrounding Dr. Miller’s 2018 attack on organic food – March 28, 2019

Today’s op-ed in Newsweek, in which Miller and Smyth defended Monsanto and Roundup, provided these bios: Stuart J. Smyth is a professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and holds the Industry Funded Research Chair in Agri-Food Innovation at the University of Saskatchewan. Henry I. Miller, a physician and molecular biologist, is a Senior Fellow at the Pacific Research Institute. He was the founding director of the Office of Biotechnology at the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.

Here’s what Newsweek did not disclose to its readers about the authors:

Henry Miller’s Monsanto ties:

Stuart Smyth’s Monsanto ties:

  • Dr. Smyth also collaborates with the agrichemical industry on PR projects, according to emails obtained by U.S. Right to Know and published in the UCSF Chemical Industry Documents Archive.
  • Emails from 2016 indicate that Dr. Smyth receives “program support” from Monsanto. The email from Monsanto Canada’s Public and Industry Affairs Director asks Dr. Smyth to send the “invoice for this year’s contribution.”

Newsweek has a duty to inform its readers about the chemical industry connections of writers and sources who argue in Newsweek for the safety and necessity of pesticides linked to cancer.

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