Well it turns out that PT Barnum was right, a sucker is born every minute. That “miracle cold buster” Airborne has finally been proven a fraud and taken to task with a class action lawsuit that has resulted in a $23.3M settlement. Turns out you can’t make those kind of claims without accurate and extensive clinical data. (Unfortunately that also means I must remove the title of world’s greatest lover from my resume, though I will be citing any and all anecdotal evidence to my favor. Er, if I ever get any. Not to say that I don’t “get any”. I do. Seriously.)
Anyway, back to the point. I can’t say that this news regarding Airborne comes as a surprise. From the first moment I saw this product I have been extremely skeptical that a cure for the common cold had been found. Especially since the product is, as the box so enthusiastically states, “Created by a school teacher!” Now call me a cynic, but somehow I don’t find this pedigree trustworthy. Creator Victoria Knight-McDowell is, in fact, a second grade teacher. No, not a biochemistry professor, nor doctor slash lecturer. Now I’m sure that between finger paintings and teaching the fundamentals of cursive writing there is lots of time for innovative thinking, but I find it difficult to believe that she was able to create a cure for something that has stumped pharmaceutical scientists and viral disease transmission experts.
Now in case anyone does not know, an education in, well, education, does not exactly qualify someone to create a drug or “dietary supplement” (aka: bullshit drug) as it is referred to on the box. This should be a red flag to the scrutinizing eye. Those credentials make it obvious that Airborne is no more likely to prevent you from catching a cold than that packet Spanish Fly next to the cash register at your local 7-11 is likely to make your dick hard.
But in the defense of Spanish Fly, at least it doesn’t claim success in clinical trials. See, Spanish Fly accepts its role as a goofy placebo. Airborne instead made an effort to appear legit through clinical testing. This is great in theory, but unfortunately someone didn’t tell Mrs. Knight-McDowell’s R&D team that clinical trials require an actual clinic and real scientists. Not two underpaid flunkies in a back room.
I can see the trial team now. Two guys, slamming back fizzing cups of Airborne like Alka-Seltzer after a heavy night of drinking, then running in and out of a 10 degree meat locker with nothing on but a wife-beater saying to each other, “You feel sick yet?” “Um, no. You?” “I don’t think so.” “Are we done?” “Yeah, sure. I bet we can still make happy hour O’Reilly’s.” “Cool, lets jam.”
With an ingredient list that reads like a multivitamin, Airborne should have been obvious as a scam. And guess what? Airborne was determined to be, basically, a highly overpriced multivitamin. There’s even 1,667% of your daily allowance of Vitamin C in there. It’s amazing how many people still believe in Vitamin C is a cold blocker, even though this belief was debunked by scientists a few years ago. Airborne claims that it “busts colds”, when in reality it’s as effective as practicing safe sex with a condom on your head. Now save that image, because buying Airborne will make you look just as stupid.
Unfortunately, this does not change the fact that Airborne is on track to bring in around $1 Billion in revenue this year. Perhaps that is the largest source of inspiration for this rant. I am awestruck by the audacity of dietary supplement companies’ claims and their innate ability to take advantage of gullible consumers, always on the search for miracle cures. Believe me, if a real miracle cure for our ailments came out, it sure as hell wouldn’t be over-the-counter. And they’d be displaying the data openly and enthusiastically.
I guess my other source of inspiration is my jealousy over the copious amounts of money made by Airborne. That said, I am officially making my foray into the miracle “dietary supplement” category with my new product, the Magic Bullet ™. I am very proud of this new item and I am confident that you’ll love it too. In my opinion, why take multiple pills when you can get every miracle you ever wanted in just one easy to swallow tablet. During clinical trials performed by my 7th grade science-lab partners Barry and Terry Liebowitz, both straight A students I might add, the Magic Bullet ™ has proven to remove stubborn belly fat, reduce wrinkles and other signs of aging, make your dick bigger, make your tits bigger (don’t worry it’s a smart pill, it’ll know which you want), help increase your intelligence, and of course, prevent the common cold. The main ingredient is found in the root of a rare Chinese plant called Ha Ha Ga Cha and the chemical extract, which we synthesize into the Magic Bullet ™, is called inyerfukindreemzadextrine.
And if you believe that, then operators are standing by.