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The $15,000,000 Man (4/11/04)
Based on records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, MAPS reports that the infamous Ricaurte (of 'e-Parkinsons' fame) received about $14.7 million dollars of US government grants between 1989-2002. NIDA would give Ricaurte a fat grant, he would come back with claims that terrible things were happening to ecstasy user's brains, and NIDA would give him another fat grant. Whether deliberate fraud has occurred or not, can such a system be trusted to produce objective research?
NIDA, for their part, seems to finally understand that they've been snookered: Their MDMA InfoFacts page, which once confidently declared that 'ecstasy' users were suffering brain damage (a claim based exclusively on Ricaurtisms), now simply says "Research in animals indicates that MDMA is neurotoxic; whether or not this is also true in humans is currently an area of intense investigation."