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Re: CHEAPER DRUGS?

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A couple of worthwhile points to note about the pharmaceutical industry:

1) It is widely acknowledged that Australia got worked over in the recent
US trade accord in relation to prescription drugs. Defenders of the plan
will point out that Australia won concessions in other areas, particularly
in eliminating trade restrictions on some agricultural products, but noone
will tell you the drug part of the deal was good for Australia.

2) Drug companies tried to defend higher prices in Australia on the basis
that R&D costs should be distributed equally amongst all consumers. This
ignores the fact that only 15% of the cost of a drug is R&D, whilst 40% is
marketing (ref: the Economist a few months ago). Australians would be happy
to share the R&D costs equally if they didn't have to pay for all those
dumb Purple Pill ads on American TV that don't get aired in Australia.

Michael Ludvik



                                                                           
             Bill Polhemus                                                 
             <bill(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc                                             
             >                                                          To 
                                       seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org                   
             11/15/2004 06:28                                           cc 
             AM                                                            
                                                                   Subject 
                                       Re: CHEAPER DRUGS?                  
             Please respond to                                             
             <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.or                                             
                    g>                                                     
                                                                           
                                                                           
                                                                           




ASC wrote:
      The general pricing of drugs is the best example of how degenerate
      the free enterprise system becomes at times. It can't be otherwise,
      since the whole US administration is in the pockets of the
      parmaceutical
      industry.

Prove. it.

I'm always amazed at how, when a Republican is in office, all of a sudden
there's "corporate influence in the White House" that is never noticed when
the Democrats hold sway. How do you think Democrats get their money? Little
old ladies' mattresses?

The corporate problems of late such as Enron, the dot-bomb flap, etc., all
happened on CLINTON'S WATCH, for example. There is no more "influence" of
pharmaceutical or any other corporate entity in this administration than
there is in any other. In fact, the Clinton years were FAMOUS for
"ancillary interests" being involved in the White House; the "White House
coffee" phenomenon was a regular feature of the Clinton years.

The fact is that where there is no incentive, there is no innovation. The
Drugs wouldn't even be there if it weren't for capitalism.

Let me give you a better example in Australia: Most drugs are
"on the list" and if they are you don't pay more than $22.00.
The gvt negotiates with the big drug companies.
They hate this and would like to impose higher prices.
US admin is behind them. That's why the free-trade deal
may not happen between the countries.

Give me a break. If they "hated it," they wouldn't agree to it. You're
imputing motives and "feelings" with nothing to back them up. I guarantee,
whatever the Aussie gov't has negotiated, it is mutually agreeable. So the
"drug compnies want to impose higher prices?" Who doesn't? I would like to
"impose higher prices" on my clients as well. But competition--the free
enterprise system you denigrate--won't allow it. There's that "invisible
hand" again, and it works SO WELL.

This whole thing is a political hatchet-job. Well, I have news for you: The
election year is over--for you as well, and as I recall the conservative
won Down Under as well. Save it for next time.
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