Saturday, October 08, 2011

U.S. Attorneys take on Big Pharma

In no uncertain terms, U.S. federal attorneys in California are blasting the corporatist health care system and the mega-corporations behind it that are every day placing profits over people.

Benjamin Wagner, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California, for instance, denounced "Large commercial operations" that "cloak their moneymaking activities in the guise of helping sick people when in fact they are helping themselves." Laura Duffy, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of California, was equally forceful, declaring that the medical "industry is not about providing medicine to the sick. It's a pervasive for-profit industry."

What turned a bunch of lawyers for the Obama administration into radical leftists adopting rhetoric that wouldn't be out of place at the Occupy Wall Street protest? Pot. As Reason's Jacob Sullum notes, they weren't talking about the medical industry writ large, or the major pharmaceutical and insurance companies that stand to gain from the health care law their boss, President Obama, signed into law in 2010, but rather California's medical marijuana industry.

Turning a profit is immoral, you see, when it threatens the profits of more politically connected players in the drug industry: the likes of Merck and the Miller Brewing Company.


  1. Man up. State mandated Health Insurance, subsidized Pharmaceuticals, and licensed alcohol conglomerates for profit are the only "opiates we can believe in".

    It's a twofer. (1)Protecting the exploited sick from (2)pot dealing hippies. The Corpress (heavily funded by Advertising dollars from Health Insurance Cartels, Big Pharma, and Alcohol Conglomerates) will relay the "message" faithfully.

    Expect to see horror stories in the media about how "outfits" overcharged elderly women with cancer, etc. "Grandma's a stoner(sob)."

    By attacking Medical Marijuana outfits for adapting to a "profit driven" Healthcare system, two powerful institutions, Privatized Healthcare and the DOJ, will tacitly claim legitimacy by focusing outrage on a hot button outlier.

    This assault is exemplary of how big money interests dictate the actions our Legal system take at every level. Note Obama's press conference defense of Wall Street. They were just "reckless and immoral", nothing illegal(despite numerous convictions and mountains of evidence). Funny he didn't show similar reluctance to determine guilt(Obama clearly said, "He broke the law." This was before any court proceeding.)when a journalist asked him about Bradley Manning.

  2. Anonymous9:01 AM

    It's a lead-in step to dismantling medical marijuana and rounding up cannabis growers and suppliers, as well as med MJ users.

    I'll wager 12 dozen Krispy Kremes on it.

  3. I would delicately hint that the notion that making a profit is in itself not a legitimate aim might empower this kind of thing, but oh well, never mind.

    Obviously it's wrong and unjust not to legalize pot. I have a prediction, however, based on years of observing your white, upper-middle class pothead; in the (sadly) unlikely event pot is ever "made legal", potheads will become among the loudest supporters of cracking down even harder on all other drugs (bad, evil, non-organic chemicals! I can hear them now.) Anyone who thinks this won't happen is invited to study the aftermath of Prohibition.