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It’s eerie. Walk the corridors of your medical school and behind the doors marked Keller, Feinberg, Strober, Wagner, flit The Ghosts of Glaxo, professors who, in life, treated disease, and now, in death, ghost.

They ghost for Glaxo, a power so great it just paid the United States government penalties of three billion dollars.

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Glaxo’s ghost-hunters know the haunts; they know which universities are ghost towns where wraiths who put their names on research they don’t conduct and articles they don’t write loom.

In the gloom Glaxo’s Gorgyrae of the underground coax the ghosts out with the sorts of treats ghosts like and the ghosts emerge in a shimmer, scripting their signature with glamorous flicks of the air upon the pages of alchemical antidepressant articles.

These hidden precincts within the American medical school are our university royalty, and what Bagehot said so long ago about the British royalty applies word for word here:

Above all things our royalty is to be reverenced, and if you begin to poke about it you cannot reverence it… Its mystery is its life. We must not let in daylight upon magic

Some are calling for universities to discipline their ghosts. Let them be! We are their (experimental) subjects, and our reverence for their mystery must remain.

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