Posts Tagged ‘mexican drug cartels

24
Sep
08

Pharmaceutical Company To Disclose Payments To Doctors

I’d put the hallalujahs off for just a minute, though.

According to AP, Eli Lilly and Co. has said they will report payments made to doctors over $500 for services, speeches, etc. How unusual.

The pharmaceutical industry is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Every time you go to the doctor, they have another prescription for you. Words such as “bi-polar disorder,” “anxiety disorder,” “clinical depression,” “attention deficit disorder,” and so many more are in our everyday vernacular. Do you fee sad sometimes and then happy sometimes? Well, that’s not right! Have a pill and this pill and this pill even though we have no idea who their chemical interactions will affect your body!

Do you think any of those diseases exist in developing world? No, they have to deal not with disorders of conveniences, but actual maladies such as starvation and AIDS and tuberculosis. Drugs do not cost nearly as much in those areas of the world because people could never dream of affording them and entire countries’ economies would face collapse. The cost of one pill here in the U.S. could feed the population of Sub-Sarahan Africa.

We’ve raised a population of entitled Americans who expect easy street and look to quick fixes when times get tough. We don’t even need to leave our bedrooms to have anything we need in the world. Is it a coincidence that obesity numbers go up the same time as depression and a infinitesimal amount of other diseases increase? I don’t think so.

Furthermore, the drug companies use people as their guinea pigs by pushing drugs far too quickly through governmental approval – though many times due to pressure by patients. Many times, these drugs prove to cause extreme harm over the long period. You know every time you turn on daytime TV and some ambulance-chaser is talking about Vioxx? There you go.

The drug companies pour a load the money they make with their high-priced drugs into the pockets of doctors who recommend them and write prescriptions and the law makers who decide (de)regulation. Ever heard of Medicare? As Wikipedia says, “According to Marcia Angell, the former head of the New England Journal of Medicine, ‘The United States is the only advanced country that permits the pharmaceutical industry to charge exactly what the market will bear.'”

Drugs that Americans depend on to live and stay healthy will cost them the quality of their life simply because of corporate greed and the idea of “free market” which does not exist in this country. Drug companies will tell you that their profits are focused on providing more products. They don’t reveal the salaries of their executives. It’s sickening, really.

So, now Eli Lilly and Co. says they will disclose doctor payments in expression of good will. AP reports,

Dr. Peter Lurie, deputy director of the health research group at Public Citizen, said the state laws can let patients know when their doctors have a connection to a drug firm, but the state laws are not working very well. The laws have various exemptions and sometimes don’t even disclose the information to the public, he said.

Lurie was skeptical that Eli Lilly’s announcement represented a step forward on the issue of more transparency in health care.

“There are dozens of pharmaceutical companies. This is just one of them. Most won’t follow this guideline at all, and there will be no enforcement,” Lurie said. “This is Ely Lilly’s attempt to forestall the federal legislation by saying we’re in effect complying anyway.”

Needless to say, my skepticism remains high. Why wouldn’t Eli Lilly disclose all payments? How many of the payments they issues are under $500?

High drug prices are simply another example of the myth of the free market and “American capitalism.” This manner of economic laissez-faire hurts the lower economic echelons – which is the majority of Americans. Until we start being honest about the reality of our lack of regulation, American voters will never demand better treatment from the Corporatocracy our country has become. Socialism is not a bad word and does not work in its pure form. But for our citizens to reap the benefits of economic growth, we must pepper our capitalism with a bit of socialism. Pro-capitalism is not patriotic. Being honest is.

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22
Feb
08

Another Case for Legalized Marijuana – Peace for Mexico

According to John P. Walters, White House Drug Czar, Americans are contributing $8.6 billion to Mexican drug traffickers through marijuana consumption – or 62 percent of the nearly $14 billion sent south of the border because of American drug consumers (Dallas Morning News, 2/22/2008).

“What you are choosing to do when you consume these dead-end drugs, particularly marijuana, is you’re choosing to buy the guns that kill people not just along the border, but throughout Mexico, guns that kill law enforcement authorities, civilians and threaten fundamental Mexican institutions,” Mr. Walters added. “It seems not too much to ask these consumers who are making these people powerful, ‘Is that something you’re OK with?’ “

Well, having lived in Austin and consumed the occasional blunt or bowl or what have you, and knowing many, many, many others who have done the same, I feel comfortable commenting on this as a knowledgeable source as well as good-time-lovin’ gal. Good limited government it would be to legalize marijuana and regulate it and tax it and lower the criminal penalties for its consumption. Sentences can be lower for gun crimes and child rape! A word is coming to mind. Oh yeah – Bassackward!

It is a dreadful shame the tragic amount of violence perpetrated in Mexico and, hopefully, Felipe Calderon’s policies will be an effective barrier to the drug cartels’ success. Issuing guilt trips to American weed smokers, however, most likely won’t be.

Marijuana is scientifically proven to mitigate the negative physical results of chemotherapy and, yet, the Supreme Court will not legalize the drug federally for such benefits. Yet, the harvest, possession, consumption and cultivation of peyote for religious (unproven, unscientific) use is legally sanctioned.

I don’t think we should criminalize the use of peyote, but let’s apply drug laws reasonably and rationally. Legalizing marijuana will have its problems, but with education and information, would have a much more positive outcome worth investigating and considering – including cutting off Mexican drug gangs off at the knees.

Si se puede, biotch!!




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