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The other thing that gets me is that we are continually being warned that the baby boomers will wreck Social Security and Medicare once they start being of the right age, then we try to pass a law that lets the boomers access an already frail plan 10 years earlier. Doesn't make much sense to me financially.
Originally posted by thisguyrighthere
reply to post by kenochs
The "medicare buy-in" thing is a fun concept.
I mean, arent I "buying-in" every week? At least there's a number removed from my pay and claimed to be put into it.
To "buy-in" I'd have to pay more for something I'm already paying for and not using?
Originally posted by pavil
Doesn't make much sense to me financially.
Well it seems to me that the only ones winning out of the hoax that has become the health care bill is as usual corporate America
Originally posted by ch1ldofthe70s
Once again we get the shaft.
I wonder if we can sue them for allowing the continued rape of our wallets?
hate to be snarky, but I don't gotta love it. Rome burns, they fiddle.
Couldn't Obama get around this with signing satements if he so wanted?
Drug Lobby Second to None
How the pharmaceutical industry gets its way in Washington
The pharmaceutical and health products industry has spent more than $800 million in federal lobbying and campaign donations at the federal and state levels in the past seven years, a Center for Public Integrity investigation has found. Its lobbying operation, on which it reports spending more than $675 million, is the biggest in the nation. No other industry has spent more money to sway public policy in that period. Its combined political outlays on lobbying and campaign contributions is topped only by the insurance industry.
The drug industry's huge investments in Washington—though meager compared to the profits they make—have paid off handsomely, resulting in a series of favorable laws on Capitol Hill and tens of billions of dollars in additional profits. [See What the Industry Got.] They have also fended off measures aimed at containing prices, like allowing importation of medicines from countries that cap prescription drug prices, which would have dented their profit margins. Pfizer, the world's largest drug company, made a profit of $11.3 billion last year, out of sales of $51 billion.
The industry's multi-faceted influence campaign has also led to a more industry-friendly regulatory policy at the Food and Drug Administration, the agency that approves its products for sale and most directly oversees drug makers. [See FDA: A Shell of its Former Self]
Top 20 global pharmaceutical corporations
Most of the industry's political spending paid for federal lobbying. Medicine makers hired about 3,000 lobbyists, more than a third of them former federal officials, to advance their interests before the House, the Senate, the FDA, the Department of Health and Human Services, and other executive branch offices.
In 2003 alone, the industry spent nearly $116 million lobbying the government. That was the year that Congress passed, and President George W. Bush signed, the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, which created a taxpayer-funded prescription drug benefit for senior citizens.
That figure was not anomalous. In 2004, drug makers upped their reported expenditures on lobbyists to $123 million, a record amount for the industry. Of the 1,291 lobbyists who were listed that year as prepresenting pharmaceutical corporations and their trade groups, some 52 percent were former federal officials.
By adding the benefit to Medicare, the government program that provides health insurance to some 41 million people, the industry found a reliable purchaser for its products. Thanks to a provision in the law for which the industry lobbied, government programs like Medicare are barred from negotiating with companies for lower prices.
Critics charge that the prescription drug benefit will transfer wealth from taxpayers, who provide the funding for Medicare, to pharmaceutical firms. According to a study done in October 2003 by Boston University professors Alan Sager and Deborah Socolar, 61 percent of Medicare money spent on prescription drugs will become profit for drug companies. Drug-makers will receive $139 billion in increased profits over eight years, the study predicts. The Medicare prescription drug benefit starts in 2006.