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NY Post: Streisand = AIDS drug profiteer

by Michael Petrelis Sunday, Feb. 23, 2003 at 8:39 PM 415-621-6267

NY Post: Streisand = AIDS drug profiteer

Feb. 22, 2003

NY Post

Page Six

Drug profiteer

BARBRA Streisand is good at making speeches about how pharmaceutical companies gouge AIDS patients with exorbitant drug prices, but she's even better at making a bundle speculating on their stock prices. The diva's non-profit Streisand Foundation has invested in such companies as Bristol Myers Squibb, Abbott Laboratories and Eli Lilly. Streisand's charity earned more than ,000 from its trades in drug companies in 2000, according to papers filed with the government. A rep for the singer did not return calls.


Feb. 19, 2003

Streisand Foundation made K on Halliburton stocks in ‘98

By Michael Petrelis

Like many Americans, I shopped at my local supermarket over the President’s Day Weekend, and while on the checkout line I read the National Enquirer cover story on Barbra Streisand’s gay son Jason Gould and his health as an HIV positive individual.

This got me thinking about the Barbra Streisand Foundation, which makes donations to gay and HIV/AIDS organizations, so I went to, the web site for the IRS 990 forms for all nonprofits, and read what was available on the foundation. The information below was gleaned from the FY2000 filing,, and the FY1998 filing,


The FY 2000 report shows Streisand’s foundation owns stock in several drug companies, some of which have made handsome profits off their anti-AIDS medicines.

She earned ,193 on a trade of 1000 Abbott Laboratories shares, and she also made a profit of ,026 when she sold 300 shares of Bristol Myers Squibb.

Conversely, she lost ,528 after trading 700 shares of the Eli Lilly Company.

Taking into account that loss from the Lilly sale, Streisand still earned ,691 from selling 2000 shares in pharmaceutical corporations.

There is nothing wrong with her making a profit with drug stocks, in my opinion, but in a canned, written interview with the Advocate magazine, she herself bemoaned the high price of AIDS fighting drugs.

Advocate editor Judy Weider wrote: “Despite Streisand’s busy summer recording schedule (and because she did not want to miss the opportunity to participate in The Advocate's Best and Brightest Activists issue), she asked to have questions submitted to her so that she could work on them in her spare time.”

Here’s some of what Streisand had to say about HIV drugs.

“Since many people in the United States are able to live longer lives with the help of expensive drug therapies and aggressive treatments, we are getting used to AIDS and almost accept it as a fact of life.”

“It is estimated that 31 million people worldwide are infected with HIV. AIDS is now affecting everyone—heterosexuals, women, people of color, and particularly residents of developing nations, where 90% of the world's HIV-infected patients live. And these people cannot afford basic medical care, let alone the tens of thousands of dollars per person per year that it costs to pay for new drug therapies.”



Streisand’s Halliburton holdings caused her some grief in October 2002 because of a Drudge Report alert about her sale of 800 shares in January 2000 in the corporation, at a time when Dick Cheney was head of the energy company. She lost ,838 on the sale.

What the Drudge Report failed to mention is that the same filing shows she sold an additional 300 share in Halliburton in October 2000, realizing a profit of 2. I think Cheney was CEO then and didn't resign from the company until after the election.

Going back to the foundation's FY 1998 IRS filing, it turns out the Streisand Foundation in October of that year sold 2500 Halliburton shares and made ,122 on the transaction.

A press release from the corporation in 1998 noted, “Halliburton's consolidated revenues were .4 billion and it conducted business with a workforce of approximately 100,000 in more than 120 countries.” [Source:]

Total number of Halliburton shares traded by her foundation is 3600, not just the 800 Drudge highlights in his headline, “STREISAND BOUGHT EIGHT HUNDRED SHARES OF CHENEY'S HALLIBURTON.” [Source:]


The FY 2000 IRS filing reveals the foundation sold 250 shares that year of the Southern Energy company. She turned a profit of ,855.

She earned ,765 on a sale of 4000 shares in the Drill Quip corporation, a manufacturer of products for the oil industry.

Selling off 4500 shares of Marine Drilling, another offshore drilling company, she made ,029 in profit.

Her sale of 5000 shares in the Varco drilling firm brought her ,705 in profit.

Total amount of profit from selling these shares comes to ,354.

On the flip side, she lost ,020 when she sold 5000 shares in the Noble Drilling company.

She lost ,148 after selling 8000 shares of Marine Drilling.

When she sold 5000 shares of Newmont Mining, she was setback ,544.

And she lost ,652 on trading 4000 shares of the Nuevo Mining firm.

Total loss of these shares is 7,364.

Here is what Streisand recently wrote on her web site about environmental concerns.

“MyThoughts Today: Judges and the Environment

“Posted on Dec. 10 , 2002

”In a case that highlights the layers of conflicts of interest inherent in the Bush administration, Judge John Bates, appointed by President Bush to the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia, ruled that the General Accounting Office, the Congressional investigative arm, does not have the right to access information about Vice President Dick Cheney's secret meetings that formulated the president's energy plan. We already know that the energy plan, which called for expanding oil and gas drilling on public land and easing regulatory barriers to build nuclear power plants, came directly out of conversations with leading officials in the energy and oil industries, including representatives of Enron. What was said at those secret meetings, however, we may now never know.


“And let's look at what anti-environmental actions that [the] president has taken most recently:

”- After refusing to sign the Kyoto Treaty to prevent global warming, the president now seems willing to admit that global warming may actually exist. Well ... duh! 20 years worth of scientific research isn't enough for him? Apparently not, for President Bush is now calling for five more years of research into the causes of global warming and possible responses - an obvious stalling tactic. The only thing five more years of research will give us is more polluting cars and power plants that contribute to the problem of global warming.”


Funny, that a Hollywood star would have no problem raking in some dough from her sale of energy and other stocks from corporations doing real harm to the planet, then kvetching about how Bush and Cheney and naughty energy companies are murdering Planet Earth and her eco-systems.


FY 2000 records show she made ,090 after selling 500 shares of Fox Entertainment, which is part of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, including the NY Post and the News Corp.

Speaking of which, the FY 1998 file shows she lost ,255 on the sale of 5000 News Corp shares.

The FY 2000 file also shows she made a paltry 8 on a sale of 300 shares of Clear Channel, the radio and communications conglomerate, home to Rush Limbaugh and Dr. Laura.

Regarding her feelings toward the NY Post, Streisand had this say in an undated Truth Alert.

“The Myth

“New York Post Again Misrepresents Streisand Investments –‘Barbra's Sinking Feeling’

- Neal Travis, NY Post, August 5, 1999

"’The many fans of Barbra Streisand may have to start passing the hat. On June 23, I reported that the diva's self-managed stock portfolio had sunk by 15 percent since she was written up as an investment maven by Fortune magazine. Well, things have gotten worse. Barbra's investments are now down 32.5 percent since our benchmark date of April 30. In the same period, the Dow Jones was off only 1.4. percent and the Nasdaq was up 1.8 percent.’"

“The Truth,

“They are wrong again...very wrong! In fact, the portfolio that Ms. Streisand personally manages continues to outperform the S&P 500 index by more than double. Most of the country's professional money managers haven't been able to beat the S&P at all! The New York Post, a conservative newspaper, obviously wants to discredit Ms. Streisand's intelligence. Maybe they are anticipating her supporting Democrats in the upcoming elections.”



This is a simple matter of a Hollywood hypocrite speaking out against the high price of AIDS medications, being for protecting the environment, who also wants to counter the conservatism of the News Corp, while making money off companies with questionable ways of doing business on those public policy issues.

Streisand’s prowess as a stock picker was the subject of a Fortune magazine profile, with the following headline, that takes on new meaning related to the health of her beloved son: “Streisand makes a killing on shares.” She may be making a killing on her Big Pharma stocks, but there are too many people doing the dying.


The life of her only child is on the line, now that he has tested positive for HIV. Jason Gould’s life is one of many around the globe dependent on the drugs of Big Pharma. We will need the help of his mother, a shareholder in both her son and drug companies, to make sure every HIV positive person, any where in the world, who wants HIV medicines, can get them.

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