Gate’s relationship with Epstein infuriated Melinda]]>
A representative from Nike declined an invitation to testify Thursday at a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing that discussed China’s human rights abuses of its minority Muslim Uyghur population and American corporations that could be manufacturing products made with Uyghur slave labor in Xinjiang Province, according to committee members.]]>
The New York Times reports that “Pfizer Reaps Hundreds of Millions in Profits From Covid Vaccine.” The pharma giant Pfizer earned revenues of $3.5 billion in the first three months of 2021, estimated to generate around $900 billion in profits. All the company had to do was create a safe drug that effectively alleviated the threat of the most deadly virus we’ve faced in over a century – one responsible for hundreds of thousands of American deaths and a cost of trillions in economic damage – and then manufacture and dispense hundreds of millions of doses in the shortest span of any vaccine ever created.
“Unlike several vaccine manufacturers that vowed to forgo profits during the Covid-19 pandemic, Pfizer planned to profit,” explained former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich to his 1.3 million followers. “Today it announced that the vaccine brought in $3.5 billion in the first three months of 2021, nearly a quarter of its total revenue.”
Good for Pfizer.
Why should Pfizer forgo profits that were netted using their time, talents, efforts and experience? Does Reich forgo his $300,000 a year teaching anti-capitalist bunkum to impressionable young minds? Progressives – and increasing numbers of conservatives angered by social media partisanship and industry wokeness – have made “corporations” an amorphous enemy. There is plenty to grouse about, but Big Pharma saves more lives every year than all government programs combined.
Setting aside COVID for a moment, their innovations have transformed numerous once-deadly ailments into nothing but historical footnotes. They help millions of Americans who suffer from debilitating depression and pain live more bearable lives. Pharma does it for money. Just like you do what you do for money.
Of course, if profits were predicated on a meritocracy of useful goods and services, Berkeley would sue Robert Reich for millions. And yet, it’s his outlook that seems to be winning in Washington.
Sen. Bernie Sanders and other liberal Democrats have been urging President Joe Biden to support a COVID vaccine intellectual-property waiver, arguing, according to Reuters, that “it would help save lives and prioritize people over drug company profits.” And this week, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai announced that the Biden administration is going to negotiate with the World Trade Organization for ways to coerce companies to undo those protections.
First of all, the entire notion of having to choose between people and profits, a belief that undergirds much of leftist economics, is debunked by the existence of the COVID vaccine. Big profits and big humanitarian efforts coexist. “I want to create something to help humanity” and “I want a boatload of cash for doing it” are perfectly compatible positions – and the latter is often necessary to make the former a reality. I hope everyone who helped save your frail grandfather or your immunocompromised family member from a premature death gets filthy rich.
Secondly, waiving intellectual property rights ex post facto is flat-out state-sponsored theft. Normalizing such an action by the government would be disastrous. Why would pharma companies pump billions into research and development if the government starts changing the terms after the job is done? Who is going to do the job if they don’t? The CDC?
Without strong protections of intellectual property, companies won’t make enormous investments of capital in the development of new drugs – the average cost of which is nearly $3 billion. American companies are given a 20-year monopoly on the idea. Even in Europe, the disconnect between the marketplace and the cost of pharmaceuticals undermines innovation and disincentivizes technological advances and access.
Of all the cancer drugs that were brought to the market between 2011 and 2018, for instance, 95% were available in the United States, while only 74% were available in the U.K. – Europe’s top-performing nation – and only 8% in Greece – its worst. While 90% of new anti-viral drugs are available in the United States, only 60% of these new drugs are available in Britain. While 91% of new cardiovascular drugs are available in the United States, only 73% of these therapies are available in Britain. And so on.
There are numerous complicated reasons for why some nations prosper enough to devise and mass-produce effective vaccines in a mere six months, while others probably couldn’t do it in six years, or even 60. One reason is that some nations embrace competitive free markets and strong property rights and others do not. We can find ways to help others without corroding the ideas that allowed us to succeed.
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The post Punishing Big Pharma for its success will cost lives appeared first on WND.]]>
The pro-Trump activist and military veteran who was charged last year over a campaign to build a section of privately-maintained border wall along a stretch of land near El Paso, Texas, now faces an additional federal cha…]]>
An Army trainee went AWOL from Fort Jackson, South Carolina, on Thursday morning, and used his government-issued rifle to commandeer a school bus full of kids, officials say.
None of the 18 children on board were physically harmed in the incident, nor was the driver of the bus — who was held at gunpoint by the hijacker. The suspect, Pvt. Jovan Collazo, has been arrested.
Fort Jackson base commander Brig. Gen. Milford Beagle Jr. told the media that Collazo, 23, disappeared from his unit around 7 a.m., and it appears he scaled a barbed wired-topped fence in his escape from the fort.
Task & Purpose reported that Collazo “took his Army-issued M4 carbine, but he did not have any ammunition at the time because he was till in the early stages of basic training.”
Collazo made it to nearby Highway 77, but after failing to hitchhike further away from the South Carolina post, he decided to take over a school bus during a stop.
“After all the kids got on the bus, the trainee got on the bus dressed in his PT clothes and with a rifle and told the bus driver he didn’t want to hurt him but he wanted him to drive to the next town,” said Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott during a news conference. “So the bus driver started driving.”
Lott described what has been deduced so far from investigating the incident:
“The trainee brought the kids to the front of the bus. The kids started asking lots of questions to the suspect, if he was going to hurt them or the bus driver. The suspect got a little frustrated. The bus was stopped close to where we are standing right now and that’s when the kids and the bus driver got off the bus.”
Collazo then drove the bus a few miles down the road before ditching the bus and his weapon. He was arrested soon after.
ABC News later reported that Collazo has been charged with 19 counts of kidnapping, armed robbery, carjacking, and other charges.
Collazo had arrived at Fort Jackson in mid-April and was in the third week of basic training, according to a Fort Jackson statement.
Sheriff Lott credited the bus driver for keeping his cool and thinking of the best interest of the children in his care during the terrifying situation, saying of the driver, “I will tell you: His main concern was the safety of those kids and he did his job.”
Army trainee hijacks school bus full of children | WNT
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Republicans conducting an audit of votes from the 2020 presidential election in Arizona plan to tell the Department of Justice (DOJ) that they do not need federal assistance or involvement in the process, a spokesperson s…]]>
Governors of South Carolina and Georgia on Thursday signed bills into law that would allow college athletes to get paid for the use of their name, image, or likeness.]]>
The White House issued a proclamation on the National Day of Prayer, but President Joe Biden left out “God.” Fox News noted the glaring omission of any reference to God in Biden’s prepared remarks. The administration of former President Barack Obama mentioned “God” in the…]]>