While we should never⎯no, never⎯condone theft, there is an inherent paradox about the daring medication heist at the Connecticut warehouse last week.
If the robbers who stole an estimated semi-trailer load of brand-name pharmaceuticals manage to fence the goods at a sharp discount, making them possibly more affordable to the masses on the black market, then they will be doing good by doing evil.
The stories say that the estimated “street value” (what a lovely term for a legitimate product) to the company is approximately $75 million.
Let’s hope that isn’t what they report to their insurance company, because the true replacement value of the stolen property is probably a fraction of that.
Which leads us to the question of why pharmaceuticals have become so expensive, pound for pound, that they have turned into a hot target for cat burglars. Yeah, yeah…we know all about the staggering R&D costs, the lengthy government trials. That still doesn’t explain why the same stuff is so much cheaper in Canada and elsewhere.
Do they charge us so much because they can? Because Congress doesn’t have the Viagra to stand up to big pharma?
And why can’t we import from Canada? Oh, that’s right⎯it’s too risky. The stuff might be tainted.