Why is everyone so mad at Martin Shkreli?
Yes, he’s a bit of a scumbag. Yes he committed a pretty serious fraud (indicted on seven counts, to be exact). Yes, he is smug and greedy and represents what can go terribly wrong when corporate America is only concerned about its profits.
But anyone who is enraged by Shkreli is missing the point.
Shkreli’s job was to maximize profit. The most effective way to do that on his end is raise the price of his product. That is how businesses everywhere are run. Was Shkreli particularly annoying? Maybe. But people who get all hot and bothered about the man who took advantage of the system should also be mad at the system.
Consider this: Shkreli’s drug, Daraprim, has not been patented since the fifties. This means that generic drugs could be available, and probably should be available. The problem is that the FDA makes it very, very difficult to get a generic drug certified.
The Politicians who grilled Shkrelli earlier this week about his behavior are the same Politicians who have held the hand of big pharmaceutical companies and made generics very difficult to certify. Hence, Shkreli had a de facto monopoly that he absolutely took advantage of. He wouldn’t have been able to do that if generics were less difficult to certify. Capitalism thrives on competition, but when there is no competition there is no true capitalism.
If you want to be mad at someone, be furious with Congress. This problem didn’t start with Shkreli, and it won’t end with him, either, unless something is done to encourage competition.
How ironic that the same people who preach about the free market and deregulating the economy have made laws that stymie competition. And how pathetic that we want to make Shkreli the enemy, when our enemies are sitting on their hands in Washington. Like a young lady said back in 1995. The 2nd Amendment is not about duck hunting, the 2nd Amendment is not about hunting period. The 2nd Amendment is about us trying to protect ourselves from all of you guys sitting up there in Washington DC. As always More Guns Equals Less Crime. Go out and buy yourself a gun. You’ve been listening to Come And Talk It with Michael Cargill.