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Laboratories of Democracy Stir Up Best Responses to Drug-Company Profiteering


Laboratories of Democracy Stir Up Best Responses to Drug-Company Profiteering

John Nichols

Mylan Pharmaceuticals CEO Heather Bresch is the Ryan Lochte of drug company bosses.

Mylan's EpiPen profiteering has been so obscene that major media outlets that usually miss stories of corporate misdeeds have focused attention on her atrocious approach.


Notice how the drug companies have also been on a merger spree since the advent of the ACA. They want to become too-big-to-fail so they can add a taxpayer bailout profit center like the Wall Street banks have.


Epi-pens deliver a cheap drug via a cheap (the price of a ball-point pen) plastic device. Back when they cost $50. apiece the company was already making obscene profits. I’m not sure what it costs now, but not long ago a vial of epinephrine was cheap - I mean REALLY cheap. For under $20. you could get a vial (enough for several injections) and a handful of syringes, park them in the school refrigerator and be all set until the expiration date (several months, maybe years). That would be the passive, low cost solution.

The more fun and creative response might be to raise a little money (we might be surprised at how little it would take), begin manufacturing an epi-pen equivalent. Prior to announcing that you were going to flood the market, let your initial investors know so that they could short the Mylan stock. After recouping their investment, take the profits and buy out the company for 20 cents on the dollar, fire the management and turn the company into a private non-profit. Use the profits from that company to drive down the price of other generic drugs (which Mylan is one of the largest manufacturers of) and lobby for a single-payer health system. Picketing and protesting is fine and good, but sort of like showing up with a knife to a gunfight.


These people should be prosecuted for first-degree serial murder. I would guess that finding people who died for lack of pharmaceuticals based on price would not be terribly hard. And if something like the TPP or other trade agreements can be used to sue governments for anticipated possible lost profits in future operations as imagined by the company based on their view of regulations, then it should also be possible to criminalize pharmaceutical companies based on the anticipated possible number of deaths and loss of health based on the non-availability of life-saving drugs. They really are murderers, not just thieves and scum.


Ever since the Raygun revolution spread and concurrent formation of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) DC politicians have made extortion and murder legal when corporations do it, while whistle blowing and other actions essential to a functioning democracy have been criminalized.

The bipartisan 2003 Medicare Part D legislation and Obama’s ACA both prohibit the US Government from negotiating drug prices, except for the US Veterans Administration (VA) which has always been allowed to negotiate.


Would Trump or Hillary work to rid us of Citizens United?