Archive for December 12th, 2010

The Other Drug Cartel

My doctor brother worked in a charity ward in the 1950s, and he would always say that they got better MEDICINE than the luxury hospitals did.

The reason for this was that back then you could try new drugs out on charity patients but not on those who paid up front. By the last few YEARS a drug is being judged by the FDA and the courts, it is as ready for use as it will be when they clear them.

So paying patients got drugs that were several years behind

Now everybody gets drugs that are years behind.

My point is that everybody knew this, everybody KNOWS this, but it does not affect policy. This is because of another point I keep trying to make: drugs are an institution, and no one is going to be concerned with what the FDA does except those who make their living from it.

Medicine is not practiced for doctors, it is practiced according to rules laid down by a much larger institution, the legal profession, what I would call the legal institution.

The legal institution employs three million lawyers DIRECTLY. Then are the staffs and the enormous power of the Courts.

People know that we elect a lot of lawyers, but no one seems to notice that only one “branch of government” requires someone to get professional approval. The judiciary may be independent of the voters, but it is not independent of the ABA.

People think they are very practical and they say “Follow the money” and then they don’t.

How much money does the NRA represent and how much money do three million lawyers represent? But that is not a “follow the money” subject because it is not on Mommy Professor’s agenda.

The car salesman asks, “What would it take to get you behind the wheel of this car?” because he knows cars and this car is the one for YOU. Yes, he’ll make a profit, but he’s doing it for YOU.

Nobody falls for THAT crap. But when it comes to anything regulated, no one gives a SECOND’S thought to who makes his living on it.

I mean it doesn’t come up.

At all.

When the Air Force was created, the new branch got the same fifteen four-star generals that each of the other services had. And the same forty-five three stars, and the same 135 two stars, and so forth.

If you combine all the pharmacists and doctors and especially lawyers who make their living from prescriptions, directly and indirectly, you have a total that absolutely dwarfs any of the major industries that Practical Men and Mommy Professor so wisely “follow the money” about.

But it never comes up.

There is more money in the legal drug cartel by far than in all the illegal ones combined.

But no one even thinks about following the money there.