The Ten Best Pharma Quotes of 2011

This year, we introduced our Pharma Replay newsletter, a monthly review of the best quips and quotes coming out of the drug industry. (Subscribe here.) Here’s a look back, in no particular order, at the best quotes of 2011. From these quotes, it appears it was a rough year for J&J, and for jobs. We've also sprinkled a bit of wisdom in as well. Enjoy.

[Coming Monday: The Best Pharma Quotes of 2011: The CEO Edition]

“[Pfizer’s] managers descended into behavior that would do Shakespeare—or Machiavelli—proud.”
Fortune writing about the last days of Jeff Kindler as CEO—“a saga of ambition, intrigue, backstabbing, and betrayal . . . exacerbated by a board that allowed the problems to fester for years.”

“With the benefit of hindsight, it appears that the restructuring may have been imperfectly executed.”
An internal J&J report on issues at the McNeil unit following the acquisition of Pfizer Healthcare.

“This court finds the actions of the defendants . . . to be detestable.”
A South Carolina judge, about what he considered deceptive marketing practices by J&J.

"Oh, God, people knew what was going on. We were told to keep things running at all cost. But I asked, at the cost of what? People's lives?”
A former H&P Industries employee, recalling manufacturing issues that eventually led to a consent decree.

"We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.”
Facebook, citing an “administrative error” that allowed the Facebook page of the Germany’s Merck KgaA to be used by Merck & Co. of the U.S.

"What's happened in the last five years is a complete implosion.”
Korn/Ferry pharma expert Cheryl Buxton, speaking of the industry's job market.

“We can only question whether the union negotiating committee is working in the best interests of its members, our employees.”
Bayer, fighting back against those who say it doesn’t care about jobs.

“Manufacturing failures emerge from the line; quality failures emerge from the boardroom.”
One writer's take on the manufacturing failures at McNeil

“Noncompliance always comes down to two reasons: ignorance or financial pressures.”
Wisdom from compliance expert John Avellanet

Perry: “This is about trying to stop a cancer. . . . I’m always going to err on the side of life.”

Bachmann: “Is it about life or is it about millions or billions for a drug company?”

Perry: “If you say I can be bought for $5,000, I’m offended.”

Presidential candidates Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry sparring over whether Perry was influenced by campaign contributions from Merck to push for mandatory HPV vaccines for young girls.


--Paul Thomas