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William Greider: Obama's $80 Billion Deal with Pharma Is a Very Bad Deal for Us

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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:58 AM
Original message
William Greider: Obama's $80 Billion Deal with Pharma Is a Very Bad Deal for Us
http://www.alternet.org/healthwellness/141856/obama%27s... /


Obama's $80 Billion Deal with Pharma Is a Very Bad Deal for Us
By William Greider, The Nation. Posted August 8, 2009.

The White House has cut a deal with Big Pharma that smells like the same old rotten politics that candidate Obama regularly denounced.


So now we know why the president wants everyone to make nice in the healthcare debate. His White House has cut a deal with Big Pharma that smells like the same old rotten politics that candidate Obama regularly denounced and promised to end. The drug industry agrees to deliver $80 billion in future savings and the president promises the government will not use its awesome purchasing power to negotiate lower drug prices.

Wow. This is roughly the same deal that George W. Bush cut with the drug makers when he was legislating Medicare's new coverage of drug purchases. It is the same bargain that Democrats in Congress universally condemned as wasteful and corrupt. The deal does not smell any better now that a Democratic president is embracing it.

In effect, Obama wants to give away one of the principal objectives of strong reform. The details were spelled out in today's New York Times and revealed by Big Pharma's top-dog lobbyist, Billy Tauzin, a former Republican congressman who leads the industry association. Tauzin called it a "rock-solid deal," and the White House did not dispute as much. But that is not the last word.

People who believe in real healthcare reform should not be nice about this. They must rise up and rebel against our popular new president's outrageous concession. They must demand that Congress declare the private deal-making null and void. If Congress lacks the nerve to do this, then this exercise in reform begins to look more and more like previous attempts that were eviscerated by the clout of the corporate interests.

..more..
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Lorax7844 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
1. K and R
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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:03 AM
Response to Original message
2. Obama following in Bush's footsteps? How unusual.
nt
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Amos Moses Donating Member (551 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #2
7. Bush policy is SOP for this administration.
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villager Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 10:06 AM
Response to Reply #2
8. Yeah! It's not like he's done that in banking bailouts or on executive power matters or...
...oh wait.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:09 AM
Response to Original message
3. kr
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mascarax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:12 AM
Response to Original message
4. Not good (K&R)
Time to read the Times article.

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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:16 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. link
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/06/health/policy/06insur...

White House Affirms Deal on Drug Cost

By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK
Published: August 5, 2009

WASHINGTON Pressed by industry lobbyists, White House officials on Wednesday assured drug makers that the administration stood by a behind-the-scenes deal to block any Congressional effort to extract cost savings from them beyond an agreed-upon $80 billion.

Drug industry lobbyists reacted with alarm this week to a House health care overhaul measure that would allow the government to negotiate drug prices and demand additional rebates from drug manufacturers.

In response, the industry successfully demanded that the White House explicitly acknowledge for the first time that it had committed to protect drug makers from bearing further costs in the overhaul. The Obama administration had never spelled out the details of the agreement.

..more..
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exboyfil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. For goodness sakes its simple
Bring the Canadian price sheet into negotiations with the drug companies and demand that we pay no more than the Canadians. I want piranha negotiating with those wolves. I feel the same with my HMO. No way I should have to pay more than the Canadians for U.S. produced drugs (many of them developed on our dime anyway).
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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #6
13. I like that
but just TOO simple
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 10:14 AM
Response to Original message
9. That is very disappointing
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 11:04 AM
Response to Original message
10. Ominous. nt
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:16 PM
Response to Original message
11. Unbefu*king unbelievable
:cry:
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Skittles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:20 PM
Response to Original message
12. meet the new boss
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 05:00 PM
Response to Original message
14. Somebody pinch me, this is all a dream - right?
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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:36 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. one can only dream it's a dream nt
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Orwellian_Ghost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:08 PM
Response to Original message
16. K&R
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-09-09 03:21 AM
Response to Original message
17. .
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