Friday, August 21, 2009

Can You Spare Some Money for the Poor Big Pharma CEOs?

NEW YORK — Billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical companies and their chief executives on Friday, declaring that they "don't make a lot of money" and shouldn't be scapegoats in the health care debate. "You know, last time I checked, pharmaceutical companies don't make a lot of money, their executives don't make a lot of money – not that they couldn't be better," Bloomberg said. Pharmaceutical CEOs are known to make millions, with generous salaries, stock options and other perks.

Abbott Laboratories Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Miles White's compensation was $25.3 million in 2008. The North Chicago, Ill.-based company saw profit rising 35 percent to $4.88 billion. Merck & Co.'s chief executive, Richard T. Clark, received a $17.3 million compensation package for 2008. The company's profit more than doubled to $7.8 billion.

TPJ: As many of you know I have the psychiatric disorder, (or mental illness, though I'm trying to move away from that stigmatizing word) schizoaffective disorder and I take 6 different psychotropic medications. As well as two other medications, one for acid reflux and the other for blood pressure so these drug companies get their pound of flesh from me and then some. One of the main drugs I rely upon is the schizophrenic drug Seroquel made by AstraZenica:

Swedish-Anglo pharmaceuticals giant AstraZeneca reported a 23.4 percent hike in interim net profits on Thursday despite the global recession. The firm reported profits of $3.853 billion on total revenues of $15.659 billion in the six months to the end of June 2009, up 0.2 percent on the corresponding period of 2008.

TPJ: That's not even YEARLY profit--that's in just SIX MONTHS!!!! Yeah, no wonder they're profits are up 23.4% despite the recession!! People are sicker when they're poorer!! That's not a surprise--don't you love how these guys act surprised when they have a strangle hold on the drug industry with hardly any regulation when each year they post "better than expected" profits? It's the classic business tactic of under-promising and over-delivering. Don't get me wrong, I'm very grateful that these medications exist even though they aren't a cure by any means and they come at a price of not just money but some heavy-duty side-effects.

That said, I think these pharmaceutical companies are out of control with what they can charge--not even your garden variety pot dealer charges as much as these companies do for their medications. It's a racket and taking one look at their record profits each year or six months tells you everything you need to know as to why they are pushing so hard against a public option health care reform plan. And just like a mafia family these drug dealing corporations will do just about everything short of murder (as far as I know) to protect their racket. They have already bought the support of many of our government officials with bribes, er, I mean campaign donations to defeat any reform.

However, I digress. So getting back on point, I guess if you're the richest man in New York City (Mayor Mike Bloomberg) with a fortune of $16.5 billion that a take-home pay only in the ten's of millions is borderline poverty level. So we're left with the pressing question, "How will these people ever pay for their own island at such a low salary???"

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1 comment:

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