Big Pharma uses your tax dollars to advertise deadly drugs to you
Big Pharma uses your tax dollars to advertise deadly drugs to you – and Hillary Clinton promises to stop it
Wednesday, September 30, 2015 by: J. D. Heyes
Is Democrat presidential contender Hillary Clinton the one White House hopeful who can put a stop to Big Pharma’s fleecing of the American taxpayer? She says she is and, as far as that goes, she’s the only one so far to address it, but more on that in a moment.
As noted by Zero Hedge, in recent days the spiraling cost of prescription drugs was in the news again after hedge fund manager-turned Big Pharma start-up mogul Martin Shkreli tried to explain in various media outlets why his new acquisition, Turing Pharmaceuticals, jacked up the cost of a 62-year-old treatment for life-threatening parasitic infections from $13.50 a tablet to $750 each, virtually overnight.
His answer was classic: “This is still one of the smallest pharmaceutical products in the world. It really doesn’t make sense to get any criticism for this.”
Sure. But unfortunately for him – he also said the dramatic price increase is Turing just “trying to stay in business” – few are buying into his notion that unrestrained free market principles should apply wholesale to life-or-death situations.
As Zero Hedge further noted:
As it stands, the industry’s structure essentially allows drug companies to simply charge the highest price they believe the market will tolerate which, pretty much by definition, means that manufacturers are intentionally pushing patients to the financial breaking point. For her part, Hillary Clinton says she would solve the problem in the (increasingly unlikely) event that she becomes President.
Shocker! Taxpayer-supported advertising for Big Pharma
As reported by The Washington Post, Clinton is proposing a $250-per-month cap on prescription drug prices for patients. Also, the paper noted, the campaign said she would ask seek to end a tax credit for direct-to-consumer drug advertising and allow Americans to import drugs from around the world.
Did you know that, as a taxpayer, you are being forced by the government, and without your prior knowledge or consent, to subsidize Big Pharma’s drug marketing that boosts their profits while harming Americans? And that you are forced to do this under threat of jail or deadly force (trying to not pay your taxes)?
The Post further noted:
The cap is part of Clinton’s program to alter and expand the Affordable Care Act, the signature domestic policy achievement of President Obama, if she is elected to succeed him. … Clinton herself telegraphed the plan with a Twitter message… vowing to go after “price-gouging” by drug companies. She cited the nearly 5,000-percent increase in the per-pill cost of a drug to treat parasitic infections.
At a subsequent campaign rally in Little Rock, Ark., she also said she would crack down on such dramatic price increases because “nobody in America should have to choose between buying the medicine they need and paying rent.”
Champion of the little people or more of the same?
Clinton says her healthcare plans are aimed at refining Obamacare. In particular, her changes would move the massive law into a realm of drug pricing that the measure’s authors did not really address.
“All the Republican candidates for president are determined to get rid of the Affordable Care Act. Actually, Republicans in Congress have tried to repeal it 54 times,” Clinton said.
“I’m not going to let them rip away the progress we’ve made. I’m not going to let them tear up that law, kick 16 million people off their health coverage, and force this country to start the health-care debate all over again,” she added. “That’s not going to happen on my watch.”
The one thing to remember: Clinton, during her husband’s presidency, was an early advocate for precisely the kind of healthcare “reform” that was passed by Democrats and signed into law by President Obama – a top-down, massive, federally regulated monstrosity that, as we have seen, has done nothing to hold down costs, despite that being one of Obama’s central tenets of the inappropriately named “Affordable” Care Act. Beware of false prophets, in other words.