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A Question of Ethics
Recently, after I had finished teaching a class on ethics, I  read a blog post on the AAAOM
website regarding "gainful employment." The published information made me reflect on what I had just discussed with the students — the acupuncturists' ethical responsibility to the patient, the profession and the public.
Dynamic Chiropractic – July 19, 1991, Vol. 09, Issue 15
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The Silence Is Deafening

Terry Rondberg has founded and promoted a number of enterprises that he has urged the chiropractic profession to endorse. Rondberg has primarily promoted and defended these enterprises through his newspaper, the Chiropractic Journal. His World Chiropractic Alliance (WCA) has been pitched to the profession through the Chiropractic Journal as an ethical national association in which both straights and mixers could live and let live. Rondberg's Arizona Chiropractic Alliance (AzCA) was supposed to supply these same things to chiropractors in Rondberg's home state of Arizona.

Rondberg also founded a patient solicitation scheme known as the Vertebral Subluxation Research Institute (VSRI). Despite the fact that VSRI has been almost universally condemned as teaching illegal and unethical practices within the chiropractic profession, Rondberg has continually claimed through the Chiropractic Journal that VSRI's practices are legal and ethical.

The scandal that rolled over the state of Arizona has left the Chiropractic Journal, WCA, VSRI, and AzCA under a cloud.1 AzCA's lobbyist was recently arrested by the Phoenix police for bribery and for laundering political contributions. AzCA's lobbyist is charged with obtaining votes from Arizona legislators by either bribing them or by laundering large contributions through a list of individuals in order to avoid Arizona's $200 limitation on contributions. The AZCA lobbyist broke down large cash contributions into numerous $200 money orders drawn in names of the people on his list. Rondberg, his wife, and other WCA principals were all on the list. Further, the Phoenix police have played a taped telephone conversation between the AZCA lobbyist and a WCA officer during which he clearly appears to be giving permission to participate in the money laundering scheme.

These accusations raise basic questions as to Rondberg's honesty and ethics. The chiropractic profession has a right to know whether or not WCA, VSRI, AZCA, and the Chiropractic Journal are the outlaw organizations that some claim that they are or if they are beyond reproach as Rondberg claims they are. Since Rondberg has the luxury of owning a chiropractic publication, he is in a unique position to tell the chiropractic profession their side of the story. Yet, when the most recent issues of the Chiropractic Journal have come out, Rondberg has simply claimed that he is being unfairly smeared without giving any explanation himself about his apparent involvement. The chiropractic profession is owed an explanation. It is still waiting.

1. AzCA and the Chiropractic Association of Arizona (CAA) have sinced merged into the Arizona Association of Chiropractic (AAC).

Michael J. Schroeder, Esq.
Santa Ana, California

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