Funniest/Most Insightful Comments Of The Week

from the come-and-get-'em dept

Unlike last week, where we had one user dominate the favorite comments of the week (for both funny and insightful), this week it's back to a bit more normal, with the tops in each being separate. Leading the "insightful" crew (by a wide margin) was The Infamous Joe, whose comment on the story of Phil Mocek winning his legal battle against the TSA (where he was arrested for not showing ID and for filming his interactions) really seemed to strike a nerve with people. He was responding to someone who asked why the officers doing the arresting get in some sort of trouble for what turned out to be a bogus arrest. The Infamous Joe responded:
The forgiving part of me wants to say that these TSA officers and Law Enforcement Officers were simply ignorant of the law, or confused at what the law really says-- I mean, they can't know the ins and outs of every law. Then, I recall what *every* cop and lawyer and judge will tell you if you break a law you didn't realize you were breaking: Ignorance of the law is no defense. If I, as a non-lawyer, non-law enforcement functionary, am expected to know the laws that bind me such that *not* knowing is a fault on my part, then surely we can hold the very people who are binding us to these laws to the same standard.

I say they should be held accountable, to the maximum extent of the law. They'd do the same to me.
Apparently folks around here agree and have a problem with double standards in law enforcement officials. Coming in second was Rekrul's post concerning his experience with the drug companies, in our post on how patents are holding back cures for various health problems:
I have both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. For about two years, I took part in a drug trial using Orencia. My arthritis improved to the point where it no longer bothered me and my psoriasis was somewhat improved. Then the company dumped all the trials because they weren't getting the results that they wanted. Even if I wanted to continue taking that drug, I wouldn't be able to because it's not approved for PA. If it was, it would cost me over $4,000 a month!

Now I'm on a new study aimed at psoriasis, which also seems to be helping the arthritis. I'm sure that once this study eventually ends, this drug won't be available for years and will be outrageously expensive as well.

Healthcare in the US isn't about helping people, it's about making the drug companies richer.
On the "funny" front, we had two comments that came in way above the next tier, and both came from Techdirt regulars. Dark Helmet took the gold with his comment about the new bill to put warning labels on videos games, which made him wonder something:
I'm still wondering why my enjoyment of Nintendo games as a youngster didn't immediately result in my growing a ridiculous mustache (by cracky) followed by a murderous attitude towards small shell-backed quadripeds.

It did, however, teach me that no matter how impressive someone's castle, the princess is always elsewhere....
And right behind him with the silver was Marcus Carab's comment in response to the legal ruling that playing Dungeons and Dragons in jail represented "gang activity." Apparently, Marcus plays a mean game of D&D:
Well I don't know about you, but all the D&D players I know are some of the hardest gangbangers around. You think Gary Gygax died of an aneurysm? No, he was quietly taken out to put an end to his massive organized crime empire. Crips, Bloods, Latin Kings, MS13 - those are all small time. They don't hold a candle to the Wizards of the Coast.
Thanks for another great week of interesting (and funny) discussions.


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  1.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 1:28pm

    Why was that funny? I meant that! Kill the turtles....

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 1:44pm

    The insightful comments show a high rate of koolaid consumption. The funny ones aren't that funny. But it's okay.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 2:01pm

    Re:

    The pizza eaters are going to come after you someday.

     

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  4.  
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    RobShaver (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 2:16pm

    "making the drug companies richer"

    I want to set aside, just for a moment, my jaded attitude about the world and think about why companies seem to want more and more money. Why is that? (Think Andy Rooney.)

    Companies want to make a profit. Why? Because if they don't they will go out of business. Why do they want to make huge profits? Because if they don't then the biggest Wall Street investors won't buy their stocks. Why do the want to make huge profits this quarter. Because if they don't those same investors will start selling their stock and the stockholders will revolt against the board so the board, being the pro-active folks that they are, will start making changes to the management.

    So when I read this statement from Rekrul about the drug trial it make me wonder what he'd like to see changed about the system. Does he expect thousands of people to work many man-years and then give the resulting products to him for free? I wonder if he was running one of the drug companies would it be any different?

    For that matter, is healthcare a right or a privilege? I don't know the answer even though I've read and talked about it for years. For that matter why should other people pay for things I want or need? Isn't that what we're talking about? There are many sides and many arguments pro and con to this.

    So I don't get what was so insightful about Rekrul's comment. In my opinion it add no clarity to any of these questions.

    I think we need to look at our society as a whole and its entitlement mentality if we want to ask the right questions. All these companies are run by and owned by people just like us. Just like our government ... they are us.

    My goal is to take responsibility for the part I play in creating the world the way it is. Like you, I am responsible. With this responsibility comes the power to make changes ... to make the world the way I want it. I do this by what I create, how I treat others, what I buy, what I give and how I earn my living.

    Finally, since both medications improved Rekrul's arthritis, could it be the placebo effect? It is now known to work even when the subject is aware that it is a placebo. Perhaps if he just takes a Tick Tack each day that will help too. I've always wondered why we don't make more use of the placebo effect since it seems to often be effective.

    Peace,

    Rob:-]

    Cassius:
    "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
    But in ourselves, that we are underlings."
    Julius Caesar (I, ii, 140-141)

     

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    Bruce Ediger (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 3:13pm

    How about the "Most Reported" comment?

    You might have to award that by gravatar, as it's probably done by "Anonymous Coward", and have a separate category for "Most Reported not by Anonymous Coward".

    Also, I'd like to propose that you have a pseudonym generator, and instead of "Anonymous Coward", you have the comment-handling-code assign a nom-de-plume to anonymous posters. It's quite confusing to deal with all the Anonymous Cowards. The gravatars have been quite a success in revealing trolls using multiple pseudonyms, so a nom-de-plume generator might have a similar effect.

     

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    The eejit (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 4:08pm

    Re:

    Hey koolaid is awesome in winter, I'll have you know!

     

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    Atkray (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 4:27pm

    Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    "So when I read this statement from Rekrul about the drug trial it make me wonder what he'd like to see changed about the system. Does he expect thousands of people to work many man-years and then give the resulting products to him for free? I wonder if he was running one of the drug companies would it be any different?"

    I can't answer for anyone else, but what I would like to see is more people like Jonas Salk.

     

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    jeff, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 4:46pm

    placebo

    Regarding the guy who got better with the experimental drug for psoriasis: There's a 50% chance you were taking the placebo (and many many people who unknowingly take placebos ALSO swear that it works).

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 6:07pm

    Re: placebo

    One of problems with psoriasis drugs (AFAIK, though I'm not a doctor, I know people who have psoriasis) is that they often work at first, for a while, and then they lose their effect after a prolonged period of time. So while this drug may have worked for a while that's not to say it will continue to work over time.

    I'm not necessarily saying that these drugs shouldn't have been made available to Rekrul if he wished them to be (and if someone was willing to produce and sell them to him). While I do believe in health freedoms (provided that people are informed of the potential risks of what they are taking or of the fact that there is no long term research to know the long term risks), that's not to say that the drug approval process is not important (though it is often plagued with politics and abuse).

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 6:14pm

    Re: Re: placebo

    Also, the placebo effect doesn't really apply to things that presents physical symptoms. It applies more to things like psychological symptoms, like stress or depression, where we don't have an exact way to validate their existence or measure their extent. But it's not like a placebo will kill an infection, and rid you of the symptoms, just because it's a placebo.

     

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    Another Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 6:48pm

    drugs patents and psoriasis

    I'm not sure that post by Rekrul holds up. This page says Orencia IS approved for RA and is sometimes used for psoriasis: http://www.psoriasis-cure-now.org/biologics . So it's available, just expensive. But if there was no patent law it would be cheaper, right? Wrong! No one would have tried to invent it if they could not profit from the invention through patent rights.

    I know it is fashionable to criticize America right now, but where were these cutting edge drug trials? AMERICA. Are drug companies greedy? Sure. But at least it gets us treatments like Orencia.

    Patents can be too long, but without them, discoveries would grind to a halt.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 6:58pm

    Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    For that matter, is healthcare a right or a privilege? I don't know the answer even though I've read and talked about it for years. For that matter why should other people pay for things I want or need? Isn't that what we're talking about? There are many sides and many arguments pro and con to this.

    Do you have the "right" to be covered? Probably not. However, if a man can heal someone and doesn't, he's probably a bad person.

    You can always ask if someone has a right to anything. That isn't entitlement mentality, it's just a man asking for relief. He's disgusted that if someone doesn't profit on his relief, he doesn't get relief.

    I'm disgusted that you think that's acceptable. Let people suffer, they don't have a right to comfort unless they have the financial resources to insure it.

    Luke 6:
    ďBlessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. ... But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.

    I don't know if you think the Bible is a decent moral guide or not, but woe to all of us if its true.

     

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:10pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    To pre-empt his obvious reply

    [citation needed]

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:16pm

    Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    So when I read this statement from Rekrul about the drug trial it make me wonder what he'd like to see changed about the system. Does he expect thousands of people to work many man-years and then give the resulting products to him for free? I wonder if he was running one of the drug companies would it be any different?


    The irony on that is that patents where created exactly for that purpose to give it for free the knowledge to all other to use it, that is why explicitly they are short term monopolies.

    Also why not have thousands or millions of people working on something and giving away that knowledge for free?

    People can then go and do local work on that problem and adapt it to their needs inside their own communities where they can make money, it won't be one giant entity controlling everything it would be a thousand little cells working to make it happen and spreading the benefits into a large surface area is that not good?

    Besides I question why do we reward incompetency?
    IP laws today give all the benefits to people who mostly are unable to make a susceful product, it doesn't matter how much work one has done, if he doesn't understand the why's he should not be rewarded is like giving a gold medal to someone who work hard on his arms to try and win a race because he worked so hard on his arms, why do we do that?

    Why is that a censor tool so dangerous is being used indiscriminately without any supervision whatsoever? Nothing is being done about the abuse to the system despite it showing clear signs that it is not helping, jobs are not being created, wealth is shifted to other regions, so why are people hanging on to that believe when everyone can see whith their own eyes it is not working?

    Could we do it better?
    Yes we can, we could enable a cooperative system where everybody has an interest in maintaining research and development where all the knowledge is spread and the benefits are local is called open source system and it works. No doubt those other people will try and stop it, but seriously, the people should get all those old expired patents for medicines and start producing them in their houses, because they don't have the money to pay for the new ones and they are suffering, when that happens you will see so M.F. from big pharma try to pass laws outlawing the practice and then you will ask if they don't have the right to do so?

    That aside there is the question of companies infiltrating the government to change laws and raise the bar so high that almost anybody else is not able to enter, is like living under a communist state where all the power is centralized in the hands of a few that make all the decisions for others, this lead to very bad economic consequences in those communists states that only got better when they opened up and here we are doing the exact opposite of what needs to be done, I don't understand that, I know why it happens I just don't get it how those people could care so less about their own country to the point of leaving it bear naked and going to another land when that one is exhausted.

    I want capitalism back the way it supposed to be, I love it, and I fear no competitor I can hold my own little piece of the market, what I don't need is a law saying I cannot produce something or dumping a mile deep set of regulations that I can't fallow without enormous resources.

    You want entitlement how about getting those lazy butts of the chair and start doing some real work instead of sending a private army to enforce the market?

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:21pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    Uhm... patents are supposed to promote openness. Where is the structural formula for Abatacept. Why isn't it on Wikipedia.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abatacept

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:23pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    Wrong! No one would have tried to invent it if they could not profit from the invention through patent rights.


    Are you sure?

    Recently Hollywood made a film about one guy that had two daughters or sons that had a rare condition and he did go to great lengths to finance and create a new drug for the disease, in his case he was highly motivated not only by the money but by a personal interest.

    Also most companies don't want to develop cures, they want to create treatments that are more profitable that is of course the natural way things are done today, if people want cures or treatments for obscure conditions or diseases they need to find their own ways to do it.

    So what you are saying is that the only reason people do things is because of money right?

    There is no necessity forcing things to happen, there is no serendipity occurring in research where one study can lead to a findings in other fields?

    Really?

     

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  17.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:29pm

    Re:

    You're okay with the double standard in law enforcement?

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:53pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    If it is all about money do you care to explain these please:

    - PatientsLikeMe
    PatientsLikeMe is a social networking health site that enables its members to share treatment and symptom information in order to track and to learn from real-world outcomes.

    - TDI - The Tropical Disease Initiative
    - MMV - Medicines for Malaria Venture Open Source Drug Discovery
    - Open-source science takes on neglected disease (February, 4 2010)
    - Institure for OneWorld Health
    An article in The Scientist, a magazine based in the United Kingdom, examines the growth and success of the San Francisco-based Institute of OneWorld Health. It's a nonprofit pharmaceutical institute that has brought to market a treatment for a deadly parasite called visceral leishmaniasis, as well as drug candidates for other illnesses common to the developing world.

    Source: Report: Gates grantee OneWorld Health creates new pharma model

    In 1998, Hale wrote a business plan, gathered seed money, and submitted an application for nonprofit status to the IRS. It was denied. Pharmaceuticals are a profitable industry, the IRS replied, so whatís the need for a nonprofit? Frustrated, Hale defended her philosophy for what felt like the hundredth time: Big Pharma makes drugs for Westerners. She, on the other hand, wanted to make drugs for all of humanityódrugs that donít necessarily pull a profit.

    Source: The Profits of Nonprofit

    - Foldit is a revolutionary new computer game enabling you to contribute to important scientific research. This page describes the science behind Foldit and how your playing can help.
    - DNDi - Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
    - Patch Adams M.D. & Gesundheit! Institute
    - 50 Successful Open Source Projects That Are Changing Medicine

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:04pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    If it is all about money do you care to explain these please:

    - PatientsLikeMe
    PatientsLikeMe is a social networking health site that enables its members to share treatment and symptom information in order to track and to learn from real-world outcomes.

    - TDI - The Tropical Disease Initiative
    - MMV - Medicines for Malaria Venture Open Source Drug Discovery
    - Open-source science takes on neglected disease (February, 4 2010)
    - Institure for OneWorld Health
    An article in The Scientist, a magazine based in the United Kingdom, examines the growth and success of the San Francisco-based Institute of OneWorld Health. It's a nonprofit pharmaceutical institute that has brought to market a treatment for a deadly parasite called visceral leishmaniasis, as well as drug candidates for other illnesses common to the developing world.

    Source: Report: Gates grantee OneWorld Health creates new pharma model

    In 1998, Hale wrote a business plan, gathered seed money, and submitted an application for nonprofit status to the IRS. It was denied. Pharmaceuticals are a profitable industry, the IRS replied, so whatís the need for a nonprofit? Frustrated, Hale defended her philosophy for what felt like the hundredth time: Big Pharma makes drugs for Westerners. She, on the other hand, wanted to make drugs for all of humanityódrugs that donít necessarily pull a profit.

    Source: The Profits of Nonprofit

    - Foldit is a revolutionary new computer game enabling you to contribute to important scientific research. This page describes the science behind Foldit and how your playing can help.
    - DNDi - Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
    - Patch Adams M.D. & Gesundheit! Institute
    - 50 Successful Open Source Projects That Are Changing Medicine

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:30pm

    Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    So you are ok with people that:

    - Take a patent and sit on it to stop others from making a competing product that could harm some other product bottom line? Many companies just take a patent on things that could turn their other products into something less attractive and sit on it.

    - Horde patents and wait until somebody tries to sell something similar?

    - In the name of profits stop research and development unless they get paid.

    - Try to game the system and extend patents through known loopholes, like patenting the same shit with minor modifications and retaining the patent on that.

    - Lobby congress to change laws in detriment of society and the market.

    You are ok with all of that?

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:32pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    "I know it is fashionable to criticize America right now"

    Fashion has nothing to do with it. It's sensible to criticize it (and many, if not all, other countries) because there is good reason for it.

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:40pm

    Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    - citations needed. Please show examples where these specific things have happened in the pharma business.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:53pm

    I know it is fashionable to criticize America right now, but where were these cutting edge drug trials? AMERICA. Are drug companies greedy? Sure. But at least it gets us treatments like Orencia.


    Unfortunately people can't afford it, so I believe they will need to go elsewhere.

    A Brazilian researcher confirmed that bee stings can help with arthritis, while explaining the mechanism by which it operates.
    Source Bee sting venom could provide treatment for arthritis.

    Apitherapy is a fraction of the cost of Orencia.

     

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  24.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 9:31pm

    Re: Re:

    He just hates people with psoriasis.

     

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  25.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 30th, 2011 @ 11:56pm

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    Patents can be too long, but without them, discoveries would grind to a halt.


    Yeah, we've heard that, but empirical evidence suggests otherwise. Look at the precursor to the drug world, which was the chemical and dye industries, and if you look at the latter half of the 19th century, the countries that dominated those markets were the ones *without* patents. Yes, there was a lot of copying that went on, but also a tremendous amount of innovation to stand out from the copycats.

    Similar to Italy prior to 1978, when pharma patents were not recognized. Yes, there were lots of copycats, but there was also a thriving Italian pharma industry developing new compounds as well, even without patents.

    The claim that you need a patent is simply false. There are plenty of ways to make money.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 1:23am

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    Third try to post this.

    If only money is the reason for people doing things explain these then please:

    - PatientsLikeMe
    PatientsLikeMe is a social networking health site that enables its members to share treatment and symptom information in order to track and to learn from real-world outcomes.

    - TDI - The Tropical Disease Initiative
    - MMV - Medicines for Malaria Venture Open Source Drug Discovery
    - Open-source science takes on neglected disease (February, 4 2010)
    - Institure for OneWorld Health
    An article in The Scientist, a magazine based in the United Kingdom, examines the growth and success of the San Francisco-based Institute of OneWorld Health. It's a nonprofit pharmaceutical institute that has brought to market a treatment for a deadly parasite called visceral leishmaniasis, as well as drug candidates for other illnesses common to the developing world.

    Source: Report: Gates grantee OneWorld Health creates new pharma model

    In 1998, Hale wrote a business plan, gathered seed money, and submitted an application for nonprofit status to the IRS. It was denied. Pharmaceuticals are a profitable industry, the IRS replied, so whatís the need for a nonprofit? Frustrated, Hale defended her philosophy for what felt like the hundredth time: Big Pharma makes drugs for Westerners. She, on the other hand, wanted to make drugs for all of humanityódrugs that donít necessarily pull a profit.

    Source: The Profits of Nonprofit

    - Foldit is a revolutionary new computer game enabling you to contribute to important scientific research. This page describes the science behind Foldit and how your playing can help.
    - DNDi - Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
    - Patch Adams M.D. & Gesundheit! Institute
    - 50 Successful Open Source Projects That Are Changing Medicine

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 1:36am

    Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    Intellectual Ventures.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 2:49am

    Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    Bitch slap time. You wanted citations here they are.

    - Lobby congress to change laws in detriment of society and the market.

    Eli Lilly and the Bush Family

    That is not the only thing in there about lobbying and improper behavior.

    In 1982, Bush intervened with the U.S. Department of Treasury in connection with proposed rules that would have forced pharmaceutical companies to pay significantly more taxes. Bush was personally ordered to stop lobbying the IRS on behalf of the drug companies by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Source:Wikipedia: Eli Lilly Controversy

    Like a number of other Democratic congressional initiatives in the pharmaceutical area that stalled during the Bush administration, legislation limiting the ability of brand-name drug companies to slow the introduction of generic competitors is likely to move forward this session.

    Source:Brand-Name Generic Deals Face End of the Line


    - Try to game the system and extend patents through known loopholes, like patenting the same shit with minor modifications and retaining the patent on that.
    The company's most successful medication is omeprazole. When it is manufactured the result is a mixture of two mirror-imaged molecules, R and S. Both are converted to the same active molecule in the body. Two years before the omeprazole patent expired AstraZeneca patented S-omeprazole in pure form, pointing that since some people metabolise R-omeprazole slowly, pure S-omeprazole treatment would give higher dose efficiency and less interindividual variation.[33] The company marketed Nexium, as it would a brand new drug. This practice is criticised because it maintains the profits of drug companies at the expense of patients and public healthcare systems.[

    Source:Wikipedia AstraZeneca Controversies

    - In the name of profits stop research and development unless they get paid.
    For example, it would be illegal for a branded drug group to pay a generic company any sum in order to settle a legal challenge against a patent.

    Such deals occur often and, the companies argue, usually involve the branded drug companies agreeing not only to pay generics a sum but to an early entry by the generic company into the market.

    Source:Move to end drug deals with generic rivals

    The practice of suing your rivals to stall generics from entering the market may end soon.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 3:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    Correction:

    The H.R. 1706: Protecting Consumer Access to Generic Drugs Act of 2009 never became law.

    The practice of will continue for the foreseeable future.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 3:25am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 5:12am

    Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    Nice stuff, but you missed a couple of points:

    Let's start with the easy one: In the 19 century, the time for any serious copying to occur could take years. It could take a single man a couple of years of his life to "go around the world", something most of us now could do within a few days, without much effort (but probably hating airports and airplanes). Information, and thus the ability to replicate, moves faster now than at any other time. What happens in one place is known in other places without hours, if not minutes.

    Market domination in a matured market (dyes) is likely that of the most open market, because there is little in the way of new development going on. They can ignore licensing or paying the dye patent owners, and sell anywhere. One of the many reasons places like China (and Japan before it) has spectacular rises from zero to hero. But over time, as their economies start to depend more on their own actual research and development, they become more protective of it.

    As for Italy, the same argument can be made today for India. But if you look closely, any work on new compounds is immediately moved out of the country and patent by the parent companies in other places.

    Nobody is claiming you "need" a patent, it isn't a physical requirement. However, it is a business case requirement. There are plenty of ways to make money, but none of them would pay these sorts of bills or justify the immense risks of capital, time, and effort to try to get to new medicines.

    Italy wasn't an information island. They were taking others' patent work and using it for their "innovation".

    Your examples show how your logic works. The first ignores how the dye industry got there, choosing to focus only on the end game after most of the research was completed, and in the other, you look at a single market without looking at it's connection to all other markets.

    Short term, both examples make money. Without input and source patents from outside, neither would have existed or been successful. There money was made by ignoring the rights of others.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 5:17am

    Weekend article sumarization

    Having (and highlighting) fan-club conversations alone won't help your business. How you react to 10,000 variations of "you blow" might.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 5:48am

    Re: Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    But over time, as their economies start to depend more on their own actual research and development, they become more protective of it.


    No that start to happen when consolidation speeds up and that happens when someone start to make more money then the others, then excluding others is a priority for growth of one entity, which sterilizes the environment, it functions very much like cancer do in reality that is why people keep having bad feelings about it.

    but none of them would pay these sorts of bills or justify the immense risks of capital, time, and effort to try to get to new medicines.


    You don't need patents for that, to justify all of that you need competition that will make you cry and go out of business if you don't do it, patents grant someone with the ability to not have to worry about competing or improving anything, that is why pharma patents are down and slowing down as IP laws get more rigid, those people don't need to invest heavily, they invest more in public campaigns and lobbying than they do in actual research.

    Italy wasn't an information island. They were taking others' patent work and using it for their "innovation".


    That depends, Italy was the birth place of one of the greatest empires in the whole world that collected knowledge from the 4 corners of the world and made great use of that knowledge, without patents I might add, also Leonardo Da Vinci is from there, the renaissance happened there so they have a big history of great accomplishments over there, further all countries were taking from others and making their own including the U.S. that took everything from Europe up until the second world war, most of the American real technology happened after that and not before, where Europeans where decades ahead of the U.S.

    Your examples show how your logic works. The first ignores how the dye industry got there, choosing to focus only on the end game after most of the research was completed, and in the other, you look at a single market without looking at it's connection to all other markets.


    You can say that is true when historically the evidence says that without any protections people created things because of necessity, most industries are formed because of a need not because they are protected, and people keep improving to stay relevant, protections actually served only to stop innovation that is why everybody agrees monopolies are inherently bad.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    First off, citing wikipedia as your source isn't really going very far. The generic drug laws you point out are "going to pass this session" have been that way for more than a decade, and aren't going anywhere. Congress has way more important things to do (like actually passing a budget) than to deal with this. It is a pet law that gets tosses on the order papers in the house or senate every session, and dies on the order papers every session.

    Inside links to FT.com do not work. However, you quotes seem to refer once again to proposed laws that don't seem to be getting passed.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Greg G, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:31am

    Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    3rd try to post it, and the 3rd successful attempt. Try clicking your browser's Refresh button somewhere up there Ā™Ā™Ā™Ā™Ā™Ā™Ā™

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    icon
    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:48am

    Re: Re: Re: placebo

    That's not quite true. It may not go as far as to kill an infection, but the placebo effect can have measurable physiological impacts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:54am

    Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    So when I read this statement from Rekrul about the drug trial it make me wonder what he'd like to see changed about the system. Does he expect thousands of people to work many man-years and then give the resulting products to him for free? I wonder if he was running one of the drug companies would it be any different?

    To be perfectly honest, I don't how to make the system work. All I know is that it's too expensive to get sick in the US (I don't know about other countries).

    Before I started the drug trial, I had several joints that were swollen and painful. The worst was my left ankle, which made walking very difficult. There were times when I couldn't put any weight on it at all. More than once, I literally hopped down the hall to the bathroom on one foot. Even when I could walk on it, I had a permanent limp. I don't have insurance and couldn't afford any of the drugs that would have helped me.

    A couple years ago, it felt like I was having a heart attack and since it was the weekend, my doctor sent me to the ER. I was there for most of the day while they ran tests (and couldn't find anything wrong). I'm still paying off the $4,400 bill. I then had to see a cardiologist which cost me another $1,500 for two visits and some tests. If I'd needed any kind of an operation, I would probably have had to sell everything I own and ended up on welfare just to live.

    I have a friend who would probably be dead now if his sister hadn't been paying for his medical insurance a few years ago when his doctor discovered, after a heart attack, that he had a blocked artery. There's no way he would have been able to afford the $40,000 it cost to open up the artery.

    I don't know what the solution is, but I know that the current system sucks for the average person while the medical industry profits.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    icon
    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:54am

    Re: Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    You seem to think there is some clean divide between the people who invented everything and the people who copied it all. It's really not that clear-cut. In a highly competitive market, yes, there is lots of copying that happens... in both directions. And virtually every act of copying involves an act of innovation: there is no point in copying a competitor's idea if you can't find a way to make it ever-so-slightly better, faster or cheaper - otherwise you are just entering a race with someone who has a head start.

    And once your competitors see you improving their idea, they are going to copy your improvements right back, and then start working on the next step - or start working on the next big invention in the hopes of getting a head start in the next race too.

    Your position seems to be that in the modern world all this happens faster and more efficiently so let's bloody well slow it back down again through artificial means. To me that makes no sense.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    icon
    Marcus Carab (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 6:57am

    Re: Weekend article sumarization

    Why should anyone take their time to reply to variations on "you blow"? Maybe the people with nothing to say should grow up instead.

    Oh, and if you think pleasing and interacting with your "fan-club" is pointless and won't help a business, you really haven't been paying attention.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:02am

    Re: placebo

    Regarding the guy who got better with the experimental drug for psoriasis: There's a 50% chance you were taking the placebo (and many many people who unknowingly take placebos ALSO swear that it works).

    I was mostly taking it for the arthritis, and I could have only been given placebo during the first six months of the trial. After that, it was "open label" where I was guaranteed to be given the real drug. Even after the trial ended, neither I nor the doctor was told if I received any placebo. He could only find that out in an emergency. The effect of the drug was so gradual that I really don't remember if I showed much improvement in the first six months or not.

    With the new study, there's a chance that I may be getting half placebo, but 50% of the dose is real. At least unless the company is lying about the terms of the study.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    icon
    The Infamous Joe (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:03am

    Re: Weekend article sumarization

    Nice pink flower.




    PS- you blow.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:12am

    Re: Re: placebo

    One of problems with psoriasis drugs (AFAIK, though I'm not a doctor, I know people who have psoriasis) is that they often work at first, for a while, and then they lose their effect after a prolonged period of time. So while this drug may have worked for a while that's not to say it will continue to work over time.

    The Orencia was only mildly effective on my psoriasis. Only a few of the spots cleared up completely and the remaining ones were still pretty red and scaly. It did get worse when I went off it at the end of the study, with several new spots appearing. I was mainly on the study for my arthritis though. The new drug, CP-690 seems to be having a much greater effect on the psoriasis. All the spots are lighter and hardly scaly at all, and a few have almost vanished. It doesn't seem to be having the same miracle results on the arthritis though. My right knee is still slightly more swollen and stiff than normal. Of course neither knee has been exactly "normal" in years...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Jason, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: "making the drug companies richer"

    "First off, citing wikipedia as your source isn't really going very far."

    True, but your assertions here just went all the way around the world! Wanna see it again?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:20am

    Re: Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    I tried that mostly when those posts go to moderation they don't ever come back so I wait, look at the timestamps.

    Jan 30th, 2011 @ 7:53pm (first attempt)
    Jan 30th, 2011 @ 8:04pm (mistake post attempt, too many tabs open)
    Jan 31st, 2011 @ 1:23am (5 hours later, after I saw mike's post which prompted me to assume the other post where never going to appear as it happens sometimes)

    Anyways I'm sorry, I apologize for the multiple posts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:22am

    Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    I'm not sure that post by Rekrul holds up. This page says Orencia IS approved for RA and is sometimes used for psoriasis: http://www.psoriasis-cure-now.org/biologics .

    If you read more carefully, it says it's approved for RA, and has shown to improve psoriasis. It doesn't say that it's approved for it, or for psoriatic arthritis though.

    I know it is fashionable to criticize America right now, but where were these cutting edge drug trials? AMERICA. Are drug companies greedy? Sure. But at least it gets us treatments like Orencia.

    Assuming that you have insurance or can afford the $4,000+ a month it costs. If not, it might as well not exist for you.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:29am

    Re: Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    "but none of them would pay these sorts of bills or justify the immense risks of capital, time, and effort to try to get to new medicines."

    [citation needed]

    Techdirt has given many possible ways that could (and have) paid the bills.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:30am

    Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    So your argument is that, because someone opened up a message board, that suddenly proves that pharmaceutical corporations care? Do you know how silly that sounds?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2011 @ 7:43am

    Re: Re: Re: drugs patents and psoriasis

    n/m, I misunderstood your argument. Sorry.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    icon
    m3mnoch (profile), Jan 31st, 2011 @ 9:00am

    btw, these posts are great

    the content of these posts isn't really my cup of tea, mind you, but i think think it's awesome how you have the buttons to engage the community and then basically report on the results.

    i would wager it does a lot to incentivize intelligent/witty/interesting conversation in comments. all of which keep the engagement high.

    i know for myself at least, this is the only site i visit regularly outside of rather than from within my rss reader specifically for the community.

    brilliant move.

    m3mnoch.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    icon
    RobShaver (profile), Feb 1st, 2011 @ 8:30am

    moral guide

    Dear Anonymous Coward who asked me,

    "I don't know if you think the Bible is a decent moral guide or not, but woe to all of us if its true."

    While I do believe that God exists, I do not hold people in high esteem who use religion to justify what they do. Here's a nice quote from the Bible. Do you hold with this practice? Why not, if it's such a great moral guide?

    Deuteronomy 20:23

    20 If, however, the charge is true and no proof of the girl's virginity can be found, 21 she shall be brought to the door of her father's house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death. She has done a disgraceful thing in Israel by being promiscuous while still in her father's house. You must purge the evil from among you.

    22 If a man is found sleeping with another man's wife, both the man who slept with her and the woman must die. You must purge the evil from Israel.

    23 If a man happens to meet in a town a virgin pledged to be married and he sleeps with her, 24 you shall take both of them to the gate of that town and stone them to deathóthe girl because she was in a town and did not scream for help, and the man because he violated another man's wife. You must purge the evil from among you.


    Peace,

    Rob:-]

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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