While getting my 30 minutes in on that blasted elliptical machine at the YMCA this morning, channel 7 news was on the TV. They had a report on how “Americans waste billions each year on brand name pharmaceuticals.” They proceed to go in depth on how low income people tend to buy brand name drugs and “educated” people tend to buy generics. That certainly is easy to explain, right? When you are spending someone else’s money, people seem to always spend more, get nicer things, etc. Whether we are discussing generic drugs, or someone running making purchases at a big company (as opposed to an entrepreneur buying for his own business), or even my kids when we go to a restaurant. They always seem to pick the steak, slab of ribs, or fajitas, while I order a $7 burger. I understand that there has to be an “opposite” of that viewpoint, because I recognize we need people that want to lay down in front of a bulldozer that is wrecking a forest, or keep some corrupt business from burying toxic waste in my backyard just to save a buck. I get it. I love that there are lots of smug, arrogant people running around in Toyota Priuses, and riding bicycles 5 wide down St Charles road just to annoy traffic, so that I can drive around in my 15mpg Jeep, and head out with the Jeep club to go drive over stuff that I can’t even walk over.
Anyway – sorry for the ramble. The REAL message that I heard in that news clip is – “people are foolishly spending money on brand name drugs” Maybe so. But – let’s think about that. This is where today’s society is failing. People cannot seem to think more then 1 move ahead in the chess game of life. What is a generic drug? Its a company that takes another companies research, development, and testing, and copies it. Where do they think those formulations come from? Brand name drugs cost more because they did all the work. Let’s think hypothetically about this. Suppose everyone saw this news clip and starting buying only generic drugs. Where would the new drugs come from to be made into generics? Where would the innovation, the testing, the training, the WORK come from – so that the next miracle drug could be made into a generic. Here is where our society is failing it’s future. We need to think more then 1 step ahead. We need to think about how today’s actions will affect EVERYONE’s future. if we don’t – we are doomed to enter another dark age. An age where people are so wrapped up in fighting with each other – concerned about race, religion, fighting over a piece of land, or a piece of bread. So, its not like Im on a campaign to get rid of generic drugs, but its foolish to take all the money spent on brand name drugs, add it up, and call it the “waste” of money on the morning news. Like all things, it needs to be in balance. Plenty of people need to buy the brand name to keep the innovation and invention of America moving forward. And those that can only afford generic drugs, well, they can share in the benefits of those that bought the brand name ones. And instead of calling them “foolish” on the news – they should thank them for providing the jobs and funding for the next generation of medications. Have a great week, and be safe people!