Here are two articles you might find interesting:
Doctors Loath to Pay for Unbiased Education: Survey, which tells about the not-so-shocking results of a survey asking docs whether they think commercial support can bias CME (88 percent said yes), and whether they would be willing to pay more to eliminate the need for commercial support (less than half said yes; only 15 percent were willing to get rid of commercial support completely). The study is published in Archives of Internal Medicine, May 9, 2011 (thanks once again to @cmeadvocate for the pointer.)
And ProPublica is at it again: Doctors' groups welcome medical company dollars, which excoriates the Heart Rhythm society for having sponsors and exhibitors at its conference (as do probably 99 percent of conventions of all types, medical and otherwise). If the Society is doing something wrong, as the article implies, then the tradeshow model as we know it is unethical and needs to change, which I do not believe (though I do believe it likely will be changing in our lifetime for other reasons). Or is it only unethical for medical shows, and okay for everyone else? Seriously, someone explain why this is so heinous, because I don't get it.