Home | About | Donate

By Rejecting WTO Drug Patent Waivers Amid Pandemic, Richest Nations Put Big Pharma Profits Before Health of Billions

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/11/20/rejecting-wto-drug-patent-waivers-amid-pandemic-richest-nations-put-big-pharma

1 Like

Profiting from disaster, death, pestilence, disease, war, crime, abuse, etc, is a huge industry worldwide. They will profit from this pandemic bigly.
The sad thing is the world elites know in advance that a dam project, bioweapons lab, new development, or other project will eventually go bad and wreak havoc, but they look at that as a feature, not a bug. Why? Because the resiliency, restoration, and cleanup industries make billions cleaning up the superfund sites and other disaster situations.

3 Likes

Bush the lesser, and Trump both taught us that we can walk away from any treaty or agreement for the lamest of reasons. Walking away from the WTO would be very positive for Americans. Therefore, Biden will never do it.

3 Likes

Seems to me like the appropriate end run Around the “rich” countries is one of the company’s to make the intellectual property of the “vaccine “ public domain and Make it available for all for free , becoming humanitarian giants maybe even “heroes “ ?? I know I’m being a commie socialist Delusional, back in my cave

2 Likes

I’m with. None of the “rich” nations can ever pretend a “moral” superiority to anyone now.

3 Likes

(Of course, not that really could before).

1 Like

It is becoming apparent that the First world is coming to believe that they no longer need the Third world to support our opulent lifestyles. They may be right, as now, here in the USA, we have an ever growing population of Morlocks that now make as little money as those workers in the third world, and live just as desperate lives.
That’s right. Large enough swaths of this nation have become third world and, like the third world, they seem to be willing to work for scraps in order to merely survive.
We are witnessing the end game of capitalism. The part where the majority of the population will have only one purpose, to maintain the lifestyles of the oligarchy. And if they can’t do that efficiently and quietly, they will be gotten rid of. The poor and working class will be “permitted” to live, for now.

2 Likes

Meanwhile, in US America millions without access to healthcare as in no insurance or inadequate coverage and hospitals are ramping up their fees in many cases to more than % 1,000. This should be illegal. It certainly is morally bankrupt. How about China and Cuba join forces?

1 Like

The shareholders will be thrilled.

3 Likes

"[A]fter it announced that it plans to charge between $32 and $37 per dose for a Covid-19 vaccine developed entirely with U.S. government funding.

The ugly face of private-public “partnership”. Corporations love socialized risks and double dipping.

4 Likes

Again we learn that – in the ultimate sense – Capitalism is no less a death cult than Jonestown.

(Or Nazism.)

2 Likes

As long as it is allowed to exist, the current global power structure will continue to manufacture endless opportunities to feed off the enslavement, misery, and death of the poorest, most vulnerable populations. With that as a given, we might still hope to see some level of concerted effort, either entrepreneurial or socialistic, to promote, mass produce, and distribute already proven effective, available, and affordable preventive regimens (Vit. C, D, B6, Quercitin, zinc, naturally-occurring polyphenols) and symptomatic treatments (Hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin, antibiotics, pulmonary steroids) to reduce the toll of human lives as the infection runs its course.

Of course, the greater toll will be taken by the multitude of parasites that live and function only for profit. But given the historically validated principle that, despite the cost, adaptation is much more effective than vaccination in response to a pandemic, we might also expect to ultimately see a greater benefit realized through the herd immunity developed among disadvantaged populations, while the richest nations face recurring waves of negative economic and public health consequences resulting from their psychopathic obsession with control and conquest as the primary objective in any and all relationships. The final given is that long-term, Karma will trump Pharma.

1 Like

Maybe it already has?

The lady doth protest too much, methinks

(Hamlet)

The idea is childish and ignores the reality that the drug companies have spent large sums of money over months. In the real world many people are involved in research in those companies and the cost is great. The article implies that drug companies work on fresh air and don’t have to pay remuneration and laboratory costs. Turn the argument on its head and why should drug companies spend money and effort for a vaccine.

Most o0f the money has been spent by GOVERNMENTS, especially ours.

The drug companies claim again and again to spend huge moneyn on research but over the years Ive nown a LOT of those researchers and they tell me its BS.

Sure, they get paid well, but not THAT well considering the amount these often extremely amoral firms make. And they are responsible for a lot of deaths, by denying poor people medicines that could save their lives, that cost literally pennies to make.

That could and perhaps will be us soon.

In 2013, an (award winning) Indian film emerged that told the story of the AIDS epidemic, and the drug firms and retroviral drugs, during the AIDS epidemic, a time when people were dying like flies, as former President Bill Clinton, who was in it, described. Its called “Fire in the Blood” and its on all the streaming sites. These drugs literally brought people back from the edge of the grave, it was like a miracle. Anyway, its a must see film, as it exposes this huge scam for what it is.

Anybody who wants the real story on this issue, I highly recommend you also follow the battle that’s going on today, on the ip-health mailing list which you can sign up for at keionline dot org .

Also, go to pharmamyths dot net (the personal web site of drug pricing expert Donald Light, who is literally one of the foremost experts globally) and scroll down to read the BMJ story on “foreign free riders” which debunks the claims of the drug barons about spending so much on research. Also read the Market Spiral paper on how they price cancer drugs now. There is a lot there to read.

Also, recently one of the top execs in one of the largest drug companies in the world defected and wrote a tell all book about whathe had seen, I forget his name, but he was interviewed in Fire in the Blood. He also has a web site, which has excerpts from his book. It looks like its worth reading.

This story is important because tens of millions of people were killed by these insane prices which even people here in the US died because they could not afford, but in Africa, Asia and to a smaller extent, the Americans countless poor people, mostly children died in large numbers. The situation was finally forced into a stalemate for around a decade for the reason that Yusef Hamied, a Indian CEO of a drug manufacturer, CIPLA, researched the issue and found a triple drug cocktail he could make and sell for less than a dollar a day and still make a decent profit. The price the US and EU manufacturers were asking was $12000 to $15000 a year. From that to $360 a year. Of course the US and EU corporations went berserk, and for a number of years, were forced into allowing it. But now the situation has changed, The US and EU have basically promised jobs to countries like India and Brazil. in exchange for making their patent laws more restrictive so these cheap generics could be taken back off the market.

The jobs were actually promised decades ago but were held up because they couldntagree on terms, these being one of them. Potentially millions of jobs that could prevent political changes from happening in dozens of oligarchical Least Developed countries across the globe, but the jobs are intended to only go to the least developed countries, so they have to remain poor. (And countries where foreign investments bringthe highest yieds, because of very low wages. )

They want to preserve the deals when the western countries were in more of a position of power decades ago, when the WTO minesterial meeting came, in late 2001, than they are now. The developing countries afterward, both there and at Cancun, said that they felt coerced, its really quite a long story and its told in a book, quite an interesting one, which has a certain amount of credibility.

People will have to decide, whats more legitimate, the rule of democracy we had before the WTO, or the rule of oligarchs we have now.

keep in mind that we’re being asked to sacrifice a LOT for the oligarchical system, basically our prosperity, so our oligarchs, both aurs and theirs, can literally roll in baths of money as their wealth concentrates more and more. You just expect too much, fellow Americans.

the books name, is “Behind the Scenes at the WTO” by Fatoumata Jawara and Eileen Kwa.

People in the US have no idea of the MANY things the WTO GATS in particular prevents. Basically, everything we folks here want. And its prevented them for more than 25 years.

Our votes are being stolen, again and again, by GATS and people on these sites have no clue how bad it is.

No we cant have affordable healthcare changes we need like single payer, they have been barred for decades. No we cant expand public higher education, thats a nforbidden subsidy. So will traditional Medicare of we try to expand it beyond the retired in Social Security. Because then its competing with corporations and their investments. That’s a third rail that means the subsidies that make it affordable will have to end for most of us. Thats how it works, ask a trade expert, of whom there are very few. You’ll be wise if you do that before you believe the crap politicians tell us to get our votes. The reason they refuse to tell the truth should be obvious. they don’t deserve our votes and they know it.

Soon it will take our jobs, too. They will be used to prop up despots in Africa and Asia, giving patronage jobs away. Thats what they mean when they talk about ending “protectionism”, and subsidies.

Helping poor students attend college is now “protectionism” and framed as a trade distorting subsidy.

TRIPS also, the IP agreement, is responsible for the high drug prices and evergreening of old drugs that should be in the public domain. Remember also how in 1995, right after the WTO came into force, David Kessler rescinded the Reasonable Pricing Rule, here in the US? Raising drug prices a LOT, and they never have come down. Its totally out of control. All around the world, we push, hard, for this injustice. It makes no difference how little they cost to make.

The WTO is the cause of our insane drug prices and its caused tens of millions of unnecessary deaths. Maybe as many as 30 million, in the developing world, mostly children. See the film “Fire in the Blood”.

You know about karma, well it applies.

Also, our jobs are being traded away, replaced by what many compare to modern day slavery, guest worker programs that pay very low wages. We are pushing this global shift to vastly epand guest working, forcing young people all aropund the world to go far from home to be disempowered, in order that they can work.
In order to strip them of the rights they enjoy in their homelands, disenfranchise them and make their labor cheaper. Oligarchs love this.

We’re next. We’ve been planning it with them for more than three decades.

Our good public jobs, at all level are next in line to be privatized and then traded by countries like us (We’ve been dragging our feet they say. But now they seem to be getting ready to pull a fast one, in the remaining time Fast Track is active, they may slip in a few more, even., in part in order to get other countries to dump their public services (again to please us) and jack up the prices and extend the patents of drugs that should have expired, still more, drugs that should be in the public domain, like insulin.

These jobs are the ones that sustain communities.

How can they claim this is to please us.

They’re doing horrible things in our names, but they are really 100% for corporations.

Americans don’t want the UK’s NHS to be privatized, personally.

Not on TV or twitter.

But thats likely our position in the real world of trade. Somebody earlier claimed we don’t follow our treaties… Well, I have news for you, our government is 100% behind the huge corporations, basically is corporations now, and we the people are the indigenous people, the promises to whom mean diddley squat.

so what you really mean is we don’t follow the social contract any more, instead we treat our own people as if we were an occupied nation.

Watch Ellen Gould explain it on Youtube.

tps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHIfSfb-RvM

So how do all of these nasty elements embedded in WTO and GAT apply to the US but apparently not to the EU and others?

Grandfathering.

Regulation (all public everything isclassified as regulation by trade agreements and theyb have all sorts of creatively named ways to prevent whatsvers deregulated from ever being regulated again, led by the US.

Regulation, and basically all the gains of the last 80 years or so are being rolled back due to these contracts to lock in what corporations own, once they have gotten it.

Regulation in all its forms is viewed by us as a contagion that we have to stop from spreading.

We certainly couldnt let our own people ignore the rules that we wrote, instead we have to obey our own rules more assiduously than anybody else. getting the worst deal of anybody, in the cases where corporate profits are involved. In other areas it doesnt matter. so you’ll notice thats all they talk about now, because thats all the good things they can do, all legislators can and do do is alienate our rights, helping corporations, they will never go the other way unless an emergency can be cited - a temporary emergency. I am pretty sure the Global Financial Crisis was what they used to enable the protectionist measures in the ACA, (If it keeps American jobs from being globalized as scheduled, and our desperte patients with pre-existing conditions from going overseas for their healthcare) I dont know, I’m gathering, however that such emergencies are finite in time and must be minimally trade restrictive in a bunch of other ways, see the various trade restrictiveness indices, we’re pushing other countries to use…

I guess we’ll also see if they repeal it soon. If they manage to keep it for the duration, then they figured some way to modify or ignore our commitments, there is a procedure, we’ll likely have to make concessions to buy back the right to regulate. Or maybe they will do something toplacate the one country thats suing us over another issue, our visa quotas, which limit the numbers of guest workers to a fraction of what bthe GATS seems to say we committed.

That’s it, as that seems to be the main goal of these negotiations, always.
They will probably trade peoples jobs for it.
Since we’re not s well educated we need to be, most of us only having a high school diploma or “some college” - They are working hard on making professional qualifications of all kinds transferable.

Why pay a US professional worker $35,000 a year when they are available somewhere else for $3500. Just bring them here, house them in a rental and feed them, and pocket the difference. Charge them rent and the cost of a car, and add that to their salary. Poof, a “legal US wage” before April 2017 they didnt even need to pay that. They are disputing whether its even legal to ask we pay it. Since the jobs are the repayment of a debt, and dirt low wages in developing countries are their main competitive advantage, they should be allowed to pay whatever they want.

Seriously, this is a core issue. We didnt know about it?

Didn’t Bernie mention our competing directly with foreign workers for jobs? That’s what he meant.

People train their replacements.

1 Like

LOL !
No We don’t.

Biden won’t walk away, but he’s a short-timer so maybe Harris will.
You’re probably correct about the next rounds of job loss.

I think financial problems that COVID has brought might have thrown a monkey wrench in their scam however.
We’ll see.

I think you have it backwards. TISA is even worse than GATS, don’t forget. For workers, but it frees corporations to be able to use the cheapest workers they can find, even with facilities located in other countries. Like here.

see ttp://policyspace.xyz/tisa Look under tisa mandate.

We agreed to outsource the jobs we couldn’t compete in providing decades ago, (Our workers have to be paid more, in some areas as much as 20 times what a similar worker in Africa, lets say might make, even one with an Oxford education.

if others could do them cheaper, we would supposedly profit greatly from allowing it.

This (allegedly) helps all of us, for example, if our laid off workers, with all the money they have saved from making so much for so long, wanted to start multinational corporations, the cost of labor might fall to be a fraction of what it is today. So its possible that after a few years of the magic of the marketplace, (sarcastic comment) , they could hire many workers instead of just themselves and other Americans who would expect a lot more pay, as this worked before these FTAs started liberalizing trade in services. The visda rules that still stand in the way are being challenged by India.

If they win, they will get to have the WTO control the issue. That decision will be binding on the entire world, not just the US.

But only in the service sectors we or other countries had already committed. Like we committed a lot of service sectors but many othercountries were much more conservative. The service sectors we’re discussing were committed by us but we were in the minority in doing it with some of them. Countries have to be very sneaky about this.

TISA has a much wider scope because it includes all service sectors and modes of supply by default. Even ones that have not been invented yet.

TISA, and all the other trade deals we have pushed, since NAFTA in contrast to WTO agreements is opt out, not opt in.

So it basically works like a freeze on all new regulation.

Businesses like that.

So it includes everything unless its been explicitly excluded.

So if we wanted to exclude something like our national treasure, AV services, allowing our government to subsidize films in some specific language, we could.

But the rest is controlled by the trade rules. Sure, this will decimate millions of jobs but at the same time it will make it so other countries prosperity, and millions of what are now their jobs, depend on having good relations with the US. Protecting our investments there, our very profitable investments, from civil unrest.

Its all about profits and yields.