MoveOn & Chris Murphy: Fact Free Advocacy

I give MoveOn.org this much. When it comes to their friends they never let the facts get in the way of a good story.

This weeks's meme is the man who will humble corporate control of government is Connecticut Senate candidate and Nancy Pelosi lackey Chris Murphy

One year ago today, the Supreme Court gave corporations the same First Amendment rights as you and me, in the Citizens United decision. And in the last election, we saw what this corporate takeover of our democracy looks like, with a record-setting $4 billion spent on the elections.1

Connecticut Rep. Chris Murphy has been a leader in the fight to rein in corporate control of our democracy. He was one of the first signers of our Fight Washington Corruption pledge, which included a call to overturn Citizens United, and he organized other congressional candidates to join him and "take back our democracy from the big corporate special interests who have so dominated our political decision making in the last decade."2

A corporate front group targeted Rep. Murphy with over a million dollars in attack ads in retaliation for his bold stand3, but Rep. Murphy fought hard, and with help from local MoveOn members, won in November.

Yesterday, Rep. Murphy announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Joe Lieberman. It's exciting that as a champion in fighting corporate influence in Washington, Chris Murphy can make this a real issue in the race for Senate.

Will you call Rep. Murphy to thank him for his leadership on this issue? Then, ask him to make sure the issue of corporate influence remains front and center in the Senate race over the next two years by encouraging all the candidates to speak out forcefully on the need to rid our political system of corporate influence.

Now, the rest of the story about Chris Murphy and the corporate buyout of the federal treasury.

MoveOn doesn't tell folks Chris Murphy received well over $2 million from special interest PACs  

MoveOn doesn;t tell people Chris Murphy has raised over $1 million from the financial services industry. Which comes as little surprise as Murphy served on the House Banking Committee when it approved the 2008 TARP bailout.   Indeed, Murphy voted for the $700 Billion TARP bailout withing hours of receiving a large contribution from the American Bankers Association.

So, when did Murphy decide it was time to start fighting corporate influence in Washington? Oh. maybe it was during the health care reform fight....umm...no since the Pharma lobby ran a blitz of issue ads praising Murphy.   Did those ads explain Murphy's flip-flop on allowing drug reimportation? Hey, decide for yourself.

No, Chris Murphy suddenly decided corporate money in politics was a bad thing when the corporations that didn't like health care reform paid for ads against him. The contributions from special interests to stuff his 7 figure warchest and the slick issue ads promoting his agenda, well, then it was good government. 

Incumbent politicians don't like Citizens United for the same reason Microsoft doesn't like Macs. When you have a monopoly you want to stifle the means of competition. You want the people whose industries are at risk to come to you on bended knee, checkbook in hand. How dare these people complain directly to the public!  

You see, it's all about protecting your investment. And MoveOn has invested a lot in Chris Murphy.  He was their Number one recipient of campaign cash in 2006. So when a group like AAF  opposed to big government runs the same type of ad MoveOn ran, take MoveOn's umbrage with a grain of salt. And also understand why MoveOn looks the other way when their boy Murphy ladels out trillions to bankers and drug companies. They are going to stand by their man.  Getting him into the Senate will pay a return on their investment.

And this investment may suddenly go sour if the new darling of the hard left, Keith Olbermann  is persuaded to run for the open Connecticut Senate seat.  How could the unctuous Murphy and his corporate liberalism compete with the 200 decibel leftism of Olby? 

The problem with investing millions of dollars in a product is after awhile, a newer brand goes on the market. MoveOn and Murphy may find their base of support has moved on to a guy who only took millions from Corporate America to call conservatives the worst people in the world. Heh   

 

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Ironman, better link?

I'm interested in reading one of the linked sites from your post, but the link is bad.  It is this one:

 Murphy's flip-flop on allowing drug reimportation?

I get a 'page not found in cache' message -- do you have a working link?

BTW, haven't seen you posting here in a while so good to see you back.

On the topic of reimportation, wouldn't it be better if the U.S. government simply asserted the right to negotiate with Big Pharma for pricing like every other government in the world does? 

Why worry about reimportation when we could negotatiate much better drug prices for Medicare and Medicaid recipients directly, upfront?  Why do we pay eight times what other countries pay for the same drug?  I know the usual claim is R & D costs are built into our pricing.  If the U.S. could negotiate pricing like other countries do, the drug companies could negotiate higher prices with other governments, put U.S. pricing on an equal footing with other countires, and spread R & D costs around the globe, since R & D has global benefits. 

Why should U.S. taxpayers bear a wildly disproportionate share of R & D costs, especially when many U.S. universities (including public universities) and the NIH contribute significantly to R & D already? 

Why do we pay eight times

Why do we pay eight times what other countries pay for the same drug?  I know the usual claim is R & D costs are built into our pricing.  If the U.S. could negotiate pricing like other countries do, the drug companies could negotiate higher prices with other governments, put U.S. pricing on an equal footing with other countires, and spread R & D costs around the globe, since R & D has global benefits.

Actually, that R&D thing is a myth spread by the drug companies. In reailty, they spend far more on advertising than R&D. Families USA looked at the numbers from 9 of the big pharma companies a decade ago and found that these companies were spending two and three times their total annual R&D budgets on ads. Six of the nine also had annual profits that exceeded their annual R&D budgets (often by wide margins). Three years ago, a massive academic study looked into the matter and found that, (in the words of Science Daily), "the U.S. pharmaceutical industry spends almost twice as much on promotion as it does on research and development, contrary to the industry's claim." The study offered another useful number--the companies spent $61,000 on advertising per U.S. physician.

Even these numbers overstates the R&D costs, because most of those "expenditures" are done on the public dime; at universities, or done via direct or indirect public subsidy (though the public pays for drug development, it's the companies who are granted exclusive monopolies, and the public gets no cut of their profits). The serious research is confined to academia, while the pharmaceutical companies throw nearly all of their R&D money into "me, too" drugs--drugs that do the same thing as other drugs already on the market. The advantage in this, to them, is that these "new" (redundant) drugs come with a new patent and can be remarketed and sold at much higher prices (the markup on a brand-name sometimes exceeds 1,000%).

Drug costs were, for many years, the fastest-growing part of the total U.S. health care bill (probably still is, but I'm too lazy at the moment to look up the current numbers). The industries profits as a percentage of revenue exceed that of every other industry, and has for years, and that profit margin is either maintained or increased every year, regardless of economic conditions (everyone else's drops in a recession).

The reason we pay so much higher prices in the U.S. is that we will. They're cheaper everywhere else in the world because no one else is willing to pay to keep the American CEOs in their fancy castles.

Business Bad, Corporations bad, Academic's good, mantra

Keep chanting the Mantra, no one's listening.   

The Best Medical System on the Planet, none better, brought to you by Amercian Free Enterprise and American Exceptionalism.    Is it perfect yet ?  No, its just the BEST.

Here, swallow this Pill......

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Google Inc is set to give Eric Schmidt a $100 million equity award as he hands over the chief executive officer job to co-founder Larry Page.

The award, which will include stock units and options will vest over four years and is Schmidt's first such award since joining the company in 2001, a spokesperson said.