Pharm Subsidies

By Bill Maher

In his January 11th press conference, Donald Trump said, “Pharma has a lot of lobbies, a lot of lobbyists, and a lot of power. And there’s very little bidding on drugs. We’re the largest buyer of drugs in the world, and yet we don’t bid properly. And we’re going to start bidding and were going to save billions of dollars over a period of time.”

People were shocked… that he finished a thought like that without using the word “disaster.” But also that he seemed to be siding with patients over Big Pharma, which in Republican World is cray-cray.

Well, late last month Kanye West Wing met with those Pharmaceutical lobbyists and referred to the government negotiating for better drug prices as “price fixing,” which is terminology straight out of Big Pharma’s lobbyist playbook. He said, “I’ll oppose anything that makes it harder for smaller, younger companies to take the risk of bringing their product to a vibrantly competitive market. That includes price-fixing by the biggest dog in the market, Medicare, which is what’s happening.”

A complete 180. So now the Trump agenda is starting to reveal itself. It’s one part whatever pops into his mind and one part whatever the last person he talked to said.

If you have any doubt that Big Pharma is going to conduct business as usual – and by “as usual,” I mean gouging the desperate at every turn – it was just reported that a drug company called Kaleo Pharmaceutical is raising the price of their opioid overdose auto injector from $690 to $4,500. That’s the shot that brings people who OD back from the brink of death. And after getting the $4,500 bill, you just need more heroin.

First the EpiPen, now the EpiPen for junkies. Isn’t it a national shame that we’re a country that monetizes misery, that allows – even encourages – the price gouging of its most desperate, dying citizens?