There have been many analyses of the vote in the last presidential election. Our former President claims it was a landslide in his favor and that he was defeated by voter fraud. That claim seems once again to have been debunked. The only fraud is Trump himself.
Medicynical Note: Many republicans including those on FOX news have supported Trump’s claim of voter fraud.
Turns out that there was very little fraud in the last election. What republicans really appear to be concerned about is ALL people voting. Imagine that, a so-called democracy, once the leading democracy in the world, under threat because one of the two major parties opposes the concept of universal sufferage.
You may recall: (from Wikipedia) Democracy (Greek: δημοκρατία, dēmokratiā, from dēmos ‘people’ and kratos ‘rule’) is a form of government in which the people have the authority to deliberate and decide legislation (“direct democracy”), or to choose governing officials to do so (“representative democracy”).
Procuring and paying for healthcare in the U.S. is an exercise more opaque and yes, potentially even more expensive than buying a new car. Ever try and get a firm price for healthcare services? You’ll find that no one can give a total price and guarantee that’s what you’ll be charged.
We have a system of revenue generation not healthcare. Your doctor in modern America is an employee and has little to no control over his office. And doctor’s fees it turns out are only a small part of the total cost.
Medicynical Note: I’m an elderly retired M.D. and am well covered by insurance. This year so far my Medicare/Medicare Advantage policy was billed $5,954 for services. Because they have agreements with providers they paid only $2,210.34 for the services with me paying a very modest $10/visit co-pay. Not a bad deal if you have the coverage.
If I were one of the un-insured the providers would charge the entire $5,954……ironically or perhaps by design charging those least able to pay, the most. It’s really an absurd way of paying for health care and is the only such faux health care system/revenue generation system in the industrialized world.
Health care costs in the U.S> are among the leading causes of bankruptcy. Such bankruptcies are unknown in other parts of the world.
“Fact one: Americans are facing not merely expensive drugs, but prices that are examples of outright profiteering.”
“Fact two: in many cases, the medicines we are being gouged on are those that we the public already paid for.”
Medicynical note: It’s safe to say that we, in the U.S., pay more for medications than any other country in the world. We consider newly developed medications akin to new inventions and offer generation long monopoly like patents, having ceded our financial interests to the companies in the 80’s and 90’s.
Drug companies are not part of the health care community. In fact they care more about revenue and the exhorbitant pay of their executives and the price of their stock (stockholders wealth) than the health and well being of their customers.
They benefit from a system fixed in their favor. They do this in part by financially supporting numerous congress people to forestall congressional oversight and then charge U.S. customers whatever they wish–no discounts to offset previous taxpayer support and no negotiation with their largest customer (Medicare) to assure reasonable pricing and profits on U.S. sales.
In fact, we pay more than any other locale in the world because we let them charge us more. Do we have any right to complain?
Medicynical note: Musk is a brilliant innovator who is also a Trumpist. He, like Trump, is willing to sacrifice his employees/people’s lives for his own “greater good.” His money appears to come before……… before everything else.
Back in the 50’s and 60’s Volvo made it as a luxury/euro car alternative to the popular well engineered German brands…..I.e. Benz and BMW. in that period many avoided the German cars because of the association with Hitler’s Germany. Volvo emerged as a quality alternative.
Given Musk’s erratic money grubbing behavior I’m beginning to look for the alternative to Tesla…..though I personally will, likely, not be buying it–because of my age.
In case you were wondering, drug companies business plans are designed to separate you from your money—not assure access to medications; provide value or promote good health. In the case of medicine in the 21st century in the U.S. it truly is your money or your life. This was again graphically illustrated by Turing Pharmaceuticals when it raised the cost of a 62 year old medication from $13.50/ pill (over priced at that) to $750/pill.
The drug, called Daraprim, was acquired in August by Turing Pharmaceuticals, a start-up run by a former hedge fund manager. Turing immediately raised the price to $750 a tablet from $13.50, bringing the annual cost of treatment for some patients to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Turing’s price increase is not an isolated example. While most of the attention on pharmaceutical prices has been on new drugs for diseases like cancer, hepatitis C and high cholesterol, there is also growing concern about huge price increases on older drugs, some of them generic, that have long been mainstays of treatment.
While some price increases have been caused by shortages, others have resulted from a business strategy of buying old neglected drugs and turning them into high-priced “specialty drugs.”
Medicynical Note: Kind of pathetic but that’s what happens when companies use their leverage on the sick and dying.
It leads me to conclude that “medical ethics” and what was once known as the “ethical pharmaceutical industry” no longer exist. It’s really all about money.