Wednesday, January 15, 2003
Slowly Strangling the Golden Goose
Depressing news out of Boston that a judge will allow a lawsuit against drug companies, which charges them with inflating prices, to proceed. She did say she would "narrow the scope of the case" but by opening up the Pandora's box to further lawsuits like this we risk destroying what has been one of the most productive industries in America and limiting the opportunities for continuing the amazing advances that American drug companies have been able to achieve. There was an article in National Review recently that stated that the United States has produced something on the order of ten times as many new drug patents as the rest of the world combined in the last twenty years. Why? Free markets baby. Do we really want to become more like Europe in this area with our companies heavily regulated by government, stifled by price controls, and unable and unwilling to fund the R&D necessary to develop new products? Is the price of cheaper drugs worth the costs of undiscovered cures?