June 9, 2019 – The Controversy Over Drug Prices and { not quite } Universal Health Care –

Sunday, June 9th, 2019 – +23˚C / +74˚F under slightly steel greyed blue skies & ‘clear’ in Atlantic Canada @ 1:00 pm –

— People are dying because they can’t afford their medications and “Big Pharma” is hiding the cost of producing those medications and blocking attempts to speed the process of allowing generic drugs at a fraction of their “Corporate Protected” price rigging schemes. – And not just in Canada – but world wide.

– Photo from a tweet by the Baltimore Sun “Maryland joins multi-state lawsuit alleging generic price fixing” –

— First: a bunch of links:

— From The Washington Post: “Generic drug price-fixing expands to 300 drugs and 16 companies” <— This one has a very long url.

— This is from the CBC – an article concerning eye drops: https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/eyedrop-waste-solution-1.5166985

— From The New Republic – “Big Pharma is pushing Big Lies

— From Tarbell dot org : “Rigged Drug Prices at Pharmacies and Hospitals” –  { & “America’s Broken Drug Supply Chain: What You Can Do” is below the lead article.

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— From 1995 until early 2002 I volunteered at WPKN FM { 89.5 FM in Bridgeport, Connecticut } where I served as the recording engineer for “Health Care in Mind” and “Progressive Voices” – call out shows hosted by Dr John Battista – a psychiatrist who had become active in trying to bring affordable health care to the state of Connecticut { – USA – just in case this article survives Donald J Trump’s administration and the U.S.A. doesn’t. } I was also the Director of Public Services for at least one year – screening PSA material to be sure that things submitted to the non-profit community based radio station for approval and airing as Public Service Announcements were not thinly disguised ads for commercial ventures.

— But the point is – Dr John Battista had done a lot of research and discovered that the State of Connecticut could save over One Billion US dollars a year if it went to a single payer Health Plan like that of Canada, The United Kingdom, and other highly civilized ‘Western’ nations.

— The Connecticut legislature became very interested in the Doctor’s research and several progressive Representatives asked him to bring a copy of his research to the General Assembly and testify about his research and his findings. The way the debate on this issue went – Friendly Representatives kept running back and forth from the floor of the General Assembly to where Dr Battista was waiting with encouraging messages, “Don’t give up – We’ll be up soon -” until around three a.m. when his disheartened allies from the General Assembly came to him and delivered the news – “We’re dead in the water – The state’s insurance lobby just killed us.”

— Dr Battista then became more and more politically active – joined the Connecticut Green Party and changed the focus of “Health Care In Mind” from what had been a patient advocacy themed show to bring on more and more progressive activists of all stripes to talk about health issues with a progressive slant. He also submitted a proposal for “Progressive Voices” – another call-out interview program that widened its scope to include all kinds of Progressive Issues. { I still have CD copies of half hour programs in which he interviewed Progressive Connecticut Representatives and an Attorney General who told us that one of his favorite triumphs was getting the state of New York to reimburse Connecticut drivers for fines they levied for not having current inspection stickers on their windshields when Connecticut had gone to a less rigorous program of inspecting exhaust systems with older vehicles exempt from needing to pass the same standards as newer vehicles, while New York State law insisted the whole vehicle be inspected and vehicles that did not pass had a short time to fix whatever caused the failure or be taken off the road.

— I also read an article in a Yale Alumni magazine that was lying in the waiting room at the West Haven Connecticut Veteran’s Hospital while my father was being treated in an emergency room for pulmonary distress on a Christmas Eve – The Article in that Yale magazine talked about Drug companies sending people into the Amazon Jungles with photographs of various diseases and rashes and other conditions, which they would show to indigenous shamen – The Shamen would look at a photograph, nod and lead the researchers to plants, roots, flowers, fruits, { – even bugs, larvae, and animals that could be prepared in some way } and indicate that these plants etc. could be used as remedies for those conditions. The article included a bit about one independent researcher who had gone the Amazon Jungle route, met with local healers and come back with recipes and examples of the remedies that could be mass produced quite inexpensively – and that researcher was very upset that a major drug company that was based in Connecticut would take a pill that had been prescribed to sheep at a penny a dose – and discover that it was effective against a condition in humans that usually needed major surgery to correct – and because that major surgery would cost in the region of $50,000 US dollars. The drug company felt well within its rights to sell that one penny per dose pill to desperate humans to the tune of $40,000. US dollars per year. I knew a junior executive who worked for the Drug company named in that article and asked him about it. His response was to send me a company newsletter that amounted to a cheer-leading {“Rah rah” ? } ‘Further adventures of our glorious CEO’ and that CEO’s glorious message to share holders.

— So, I have a little bit of insight into the corporate shenanigans that keep drug prices as high as they can get them. And I’m not really happy about it.

— One radio person from the nineteen eighties joked that Ronald Reagan would reincarnate as a single black mother on welfare as punishment for his policies and his declared war on welfare recipients. { I do not believe that God punishes anybody – I do believe in reincarnation and it is my take on the anomalies of suffering that we punish ourselves in order to become better persons and evolve toward ‘the better angels of our beings’. } I’m thinking that Pharmaceutical company executives would probably re-incarnate as innocent victims of poverty and diseases in third world countries where they will not be able to afford their medications and suffer intensely while most of the ‘civilized world’ could deal with those diseases at no cost to their citizens.

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— & because I needed to check out Tarbell dot org :  From Bill Moyers dot com —> an article about Tarbell dot org: “New Website Tarbell Fights Rich And Powerful

– Artistic Rendering by Udo J Keppler for Puck in 1904 – related to an article by Ida Tarbell. –

— Namesté,

— Jim Wellington – New Brunswick, Canada –

“Oktember”

Saturday, October 15th, 2016 —  -2˚C / +28˚F Grey, chilly and ‘forlorn’ looking out there in Atlantic Canada @7:43 am —

Hungarian Guard Dog

“Hungarian Guard Dog” – I don’t think I’d mess with one of these guys – I might ‘soil me armor’ if something like that moved, especially if it was moving toward me. I’d think it was a monster from some not very friendly parallel universe —

— I told my nephew I’d find this picture and send it to him. Only took me two full weeks?

— Um, let’s see, I was looking through some recent very beautiful photos that have come at me through the ‘Tweet-Us-Sphere’ – I wanted to pretty up the screen that pops up when I fire up the computer that doesn’t do much more than grab and keep most of my email. There’s some other stuff that goes into orbit, and I don’t even look at it. But anyway – I also wanted to work on this blog and see if I can pretty it up a bit – [ shrug ] I found this instead and here it is.

~~~~~ Jim

 

— Duh— Is it Tomorrow Yet?

Monday, September 26th, 2016 — 3˚C / 38˚F & Still Dark @ 7:00 am in our little corner of Atlantic Canada —

Farm Stand side yard.

‘Farm Stand with farm animals and Playground. Plus dark threatening clouds overhead.’

— I woke up this morning thinking it was Tuesday. Last Friday morning, Cathi was so sure that it was Saturday that she turned off her alarm after it went off. So I guess whatever we’re experiencing, it’s contagious. 😉

— Yesterday, we ‘discovered’ a couple farm stands on Hwy 105 South – on the east side of the St John River. Cathi had already seen them a while back and wanted to go there to check out what they had for sale, this was our first opportunity to do that. I thought we were in Jemseg. Cathi later told somebody that Jemseg is actually 50 kilometers south of where we were, in Maugerville. The first farm stand is one I heard about before – with a giant potato man waving at traffic in front of the building. It had been in the same family for generations and the sad farmer came to the realization that his offspring didn’t want to continue on with the tradition, so he was selling it. The second one, above, had this side yard with several penned up farm animals: goats, sheep, alpacas – and a bit of a playground to keep kids happy and busy while they were there. Yesterday also had a bunch of ‘sunshowers’ popping up all afternoon. You can see one approaching in this photograph- a couple minutes later it was pouring rain in just as bright sunshine and most of the animals ran under the roof of a small shelter like building in the centre of this fenced off area. Signs all around the fence there say “Animals May Bite” & in essence: ‘Don’t do anything stupid-‘ 🙂

~~~~~ Jim

Welcome to 2016 –

Friday, January 8, 2016 -( 25˚F / -4˚C & “clear” @ 9:00 am in Ithaca )-

It’s been a while since I’ve been able to even attempt this. Maybe Mercury Retrograde is trying to tell me I should be keeping up with goals I sort of set myself when I was silly enough to believe I had enough time to follow through with them.

Okay- My Canadian Friends have a new Prime Minister and a new “Government” that can’t be as bad and can’t be as mean-spirited as the ex Prime Minister or his ‘Conservative Government’. One friend told me he used to have a ‘protest button’ that said “Part of the way with LBJ” when a lot of misled Democrats were wearing “All the way with LBJ” and others were wearing buttons that said, “The Great Society / Bullets Bombs and Bullshit” I was a little bit young back then and thought it would cool to be old enough to get away with wearing a button that spelled out “B.S.” for everybody to see.

And now I’m sitting here wondering if the Justin Trudeau ‘government’ can possibly live up to the hopes and dreams of anybody who voted him (and ‘them’) in- I suppose dreams just might come true-

-Okay, I’m almost ready to hit the ‘Publish’ button, I should probably run this through the spelling checker first and see if I can keep this going at least until Mercury stops moon walking backward across the sky-

Quote from RFK Jr

How about a quote from RFK jr? I thought we’d already fallen through the Oligarchy phase and were about to be jack-booted into all out fascism.

Occupy Wall Street

Has anybody heard of the phrase “Equal protection under the law”? or “Equal treatment under the law”? Or should we revive Arlo Guthrie’s “Pause for Mister Claus” in which he quips that one of the great things about America is that they will go after anybody, even ‘the last guy’ who he describes as the most destitute person in the USA -not in those words-

Michael Moore thinks the governor of Michigan should be arrested

Yeah, yeah, this is yesterday’s news, but this is the first chance I had to sit down and do anything about it. And, so much is happening you might have missed this.

Discharged Canadian Veteran charged with insubordination.

Now this is suspicious – It looks like they’re trying to impose martial law where that hasn’t been declared, and how the bleep can you charge somebody who isn’t in the armed services with insubordination? And if they do get away with this in Canada, what’s next? & Where else will they try this kind of nonsense?

Unions 4 Workers tweet.

How many times do we have to be lied to before we stand up and scream, “Just Give Me the Truth!” John Lennon, are you working with us from the other side?

George Orwell Quote.

Some of my conspiracy watch type friends said that George Orwell was an Elitist, or at least the son of Elitists, and “1984” was something he tried to tell us was coming to a street corner near you. But a quote like this makes sense, even if this is not the best photo I’ve ever seen of him.

—djo—

-Archives- Arnprior Weather – Boxing Day, 2009

Freezing Rain on Boxing Day

-Arnprior, Ontario, Canada. Boxing Day (December 26, 2009)

Arnprior was a skating rink this morning. Our poor dog had a heck of a time trying to find a nice, flat, and rough enough so his feet didn’t fly out from under him… spot to take his morning pee.

Anyway, the photo was taken looking East from just outside the TVCOGECO studio on Madawaska Street (kind of one of the back doors of the Town Hall.) (except the studio no longer connects with the rest of the lower floor of the building.)

The soundtrack was classical music from CBC-2.

—–Jim—–

-Archives- Arnprior Weather – Dec., 2009

They Say it might Rain For Christmas ????

Gloomy View with Church

Gloomy view from the Quality Inn parking lot, Catholic Church disant left. -jrw-

 

-Arnprior, Ontario, Canada. Christmas Eve, 2009.

It’s bitter cold in the Nation’s Capital Region (and we’re just west of the Greater Ottawa City Limits) (at least until a dis-amalgamation happens. Big “IF”)

So it’s kind of strange that after a couple weeks of bitter cold, they’re forecasting possible rain on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

We’ll have to see.

—–Jim