By WILLIAM MAYER
June 1, 2012 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - According to a major report released on May 31 by the House Leadership, the Obama Administration engaged with the pharmaceutical industry in a secret and fevered process of negotiations involving veiled threats and outright intimidation by the WH in order to secure the pharmaceutical industry's public participation in the campaign to support the president's healthcare proposal.
The report is based upon confidential emails which came into possession of the GOP revealing the intense nature of this undertaking.
These secret back room sessions were conducted primarily with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) [the pharmaceutical industry's trade association] and Pfizer during the period of mid June 2009 through early 2010, "during which special breaks for Big Pharma in the health care legislation, were mentioned in exchange for the companies' public support of the bill." [source, Closed Door Obamacare Negotiations, p.1, view House document here House Leadership Report, Obamacare/Big Pharma Collusion
The House investigation additionally determined:
"Documents obtained through the Committee's investigation show that throughout 2009 and in the early months of 2010, the White House engaged in a series of closed-door negotiations with various outside interest groups prior to PPACA becoming law on March 23, 2010. The majority of these negotiations took place between May and August of 2009, although the Administration's dialogue with special interest groups continued behind the scenes right up to passage of the law.
Of these negotiations, the dealings with PhRMA and Pfizer appeared to be of utmost concern and hence the most carefully managed, with extensive communications exchanged between the parties. In fact, Team Obama made clear that PhRMA needed to have a direct line of communication with its team, "Rahm's calling Nancy Ann and knows Billy [Tauzin, PhRMA's President] is going to talk to Nancy Ann tonight. Rahm will make it clear that PhRMA needs a direct line of communication, separate and apart from any other coalition." [source, p. 2]
One aspect of this deal apparently included a promise on behalf of the president to halt the re-importation of drugs into the U.S. market so as to boost Big Pharma's bottom line through avoidance of potential stiff price competition - often from its own products flowing back across the Canada border.
"PhRMA's chief lobbyist for the deal negotiations quickly relayed this news:
From: Bryant Hall
Sent: Wednesday, June 03, 2009 11:30 AM
To: Nicoli, David P; Davis, Chip; Buckley, Richard E.
Subject: Re: Revenue Raisers
Nancy-Ann DeParle just called to say that the WH is opposing import on this bill, specifically linking to our willingness to be cooperative on HCR" [source, reproduced email, p. 9]
In instances when the "good cop" routine foundered, "The White House was not above threatening PhRMA to get its way. According to PhRMA's chief lobbyist, the White House was going to have President Obama call for rebating all of Medicare Part D, a policy PhRMA staunchly opposed, in his Weekly Radio Address unless PhRMA cut a deal with the White House to support health reform." [source, p. 9]
In order to turn up the heat in this high level game of chicken, "The White House had threatened to use the President's weekly radio address to call for rebates in Part D unless the pharmaceutical industry agreed to a deal..." [source, p. 7]
The study reveals the high dollar value of the stakes involved in a potential agreement, "According to an internal summary of the deal, PhRMA agreed to contribute $80 billion toward the cost of the health care law through various policies that would reduce industry earnings and increase costs."
There was the realization by all parties involved that the negotiations had to remain very hush-hush so as to keep the American public in the dark regarding the level of subterfuge, "Confidential: WH is working on some very explicit language on importation to kill it in health care reform. This has to stay quiet." [p. 10]
There is much more revealed in the report, but already some aspects of the seriousness nature of this matter are clear. Three are mentioned below.
1. The administration, behind the back of the American public, whose "best interests" were speciously offered as the raison d'être for the entire healthcare makeover, secretly in direct contravention of Mr. Obama's multiple promises of complete transparency, engaged in the type of arm breaking, smoke-filled-back-room dealing so common in Daley's dynastic version of Chicago politics.
2. It makes clear what some have long known [and many suspected] about Mr. Obama's true political ideology. It seems an inescapable conclusion that he is a corporate socialist, the central economic component of Fascism, as represented by the original Italian system under Benito Mussolini and later it's German Nazi iteration.
The massive reordering of government which the president and his administration have so feverishly sought will have the effect of empowering the White House to eventually dominate every important sector of the economy. At that point this bunch [already provably lacking in any manner of business acumen] will have the power to ultimately pick winners and losers ala Solyndra. Such decisions will not be based upon any real expectation that such an arrangement will result in prosperity, but rather it will be "justified" under Mr. Obama's twisted conception of "economic justice."
We hope that the already aggrieved Catholic leadership, especially the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops [USCCB], is taking notes as to the ramifications of its current ideological trajectory.
On the way to bringing about a "modern" collectivist state, long cherished concepts such as liberty, equality before the law and federalism will be extinguished or so seriously compromised they will cease to have relevance - notwithstanding the fact that utopian socialism has abjectly failed in every country in which it has been tried - often with only piles of bodies to show for the effort. Perhaps of more concern, the level of intimidation - brute governmental force - required to maintain such a plan will be prodigious and an absolute threat to civil liberty as we know it.
3. The behind the scenes glimpse at what was secretly done to ram Obamacare down the throats of the American people provided by this report, unfortunately reveals that many of America's most heretofore prestigious business are - more than willing - eager to throw the populace under the bus so as to retain - even in a diminished capacity - control over a small piece of an economy which was once the envy of the world.
In the minds of many, this writer included, corporate leaders once represented the last best line of defense against such an oligarchical seizure of power. Since Mr. Obama's election, it seemed inexplicable why there was little pushback from America's existing and powerful corporate structure when this administration set about to quickly consolidate its power. Some wondered why they almost immediately ran up the white flag of surrender without [figuratively] firing a shot, now we know why, we know the ugly truth.
©2012 PipeLineNews.org LLC, William Mayer. All rights reserved.