Well, Big Pharma won a round, sort of.
They couldn't win on the Senate floor. Think about that. A bunch of alert, angry and organized parents with about $134.98 collectively between us stopped S 1873, the number one priority of the $6 trillion pharmaceutical industry and the morally bankrupt leadership of the US Senate.
So Bill Frist used parliamentary tricks to at least salvage the liability protection the pharmaceutical industry so desperately wants. That's bad but not nearly as bad as it could have been. And S 1873 would have been far worse than what happened last night. If S 1873 had passed, vaccine development would have moved into the world of top secret weapons development. Revealing any information about a vaccine, except what the government wanted you to know, could have been proscuted as a terrorist act. It was possible under S 1873 that refusing a vaccine, or pandemic counter-measure, the new term for vaccines that Orwell would have been proud of coining, could have been prosecuted as a terrorist act.
What we all should have learned here is that it has gotten to the point where the pharmaceutical industry feels threatened by the basic institutions of democracy and is actively seeking to do away with them. This is not an exaggeration. They recognize that the Anglo-American sytem of justice, 1000 years in the making, no longer serves the short-term profit goals of a Swiss pharmaceutical giant, Novartis, and a French pharmaceutical giant, Sanofi Aventis, so it must go.
One wonders why the Soviet Union or Maoist China weren't at the forefront of vaccine development. Both countries had exactly what the vaccine industry wants: no liability, absolute secrecy, passive populations with no ability to resist the directives of the government, no free-market of goods or information, exactly the kind of world Paul Offit and the vaccine fascists are seeking to create. Except that under Khruschev thimerosal was evaluated as a preservative for vaccines and rejected as far too toxic for use in humans or animals. So I guess the Soviet Union was a little too soft for Offit.
And what have the pharmaceuticals got for their effort. Legislation that allows the President to declare a vaccine a pandemic counter-measure and give legal immunity to his buddies. The question is who would take the vaccine? The administration bombed once already with the small pox vaccine. And how much longer can they declare the sky is falling with avian flu? Remeber SARS? Remember the coming Ebola plague? It is just one more criminal act of a criminal gang that happens to be in control of Washington right now.
We on the other hand are better organized than ever and we will be back. We fought hard and we prevented something much worse than what happened last night from being unleashed. And we will be back.
December 23, 2005
A-CHAMP on Frist's tricks
From John Gilmore: