Skip to main content

Shed no tears for BigPharma. When faced with losing patent price protection, they simply dump their products on the market and try to kill competition from generics. Why is this illegal when other countries "dump" cheap electronics but legal when domestic campaign contributors rip off old people? Why? Why? Free markets, that's why!

Merck Inc., passed a milestone on Friday, more potentially painful than passing a golfball-sized kidney stone. Actually, the right metaphor might be a gall stone. Merck's patent for its best-selling drug, Zocor, expired, allowing three other companies to sell generic versions of the popular drug, possibly at 90 percent of the patent price. But corporate pirates don't get rich just by commandeering dinghies. Merck plans to cannonade the entire generic drug industry by using its market power to lower the price of the brand-name Zocor to less than what the generics cost. This would be a kick to the head, or lower, of Pfizer, whose competing drug, Lipitor, will lose market share as large insurers stick with the cheaper Zocor. And as for the generic market - watch out for the wake! This strategy is called illegal "dumping" when applied to imported consumer products. But the big boys in Big Pharma don't have to worry. After putting generic competitors out of business, they will continue to raise prices to Medicare recipients, raking in the profits awarded to it by Congress when it refused to allow the government - the market's biggest purchaser -- to negotiate for volume discounts.

Originally posted to Ira R Allen on Fri Jun 23, 2006 at 03:04 PM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site