Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Face of Greed: Martin Shkreli


Here's the face of GREED, if not evil. Former hedge fund manager, Martin Shkreli raised the price of a life-saving drug from $13.50 a tablet to $750 overnight. Shkreli's company, Turing Pharmaceuticals, bought the rights to Daraprim and immediately hiked the price more than 5,000 percent. Daraprim is a critical part of the standard treatment for a potentially life-threatening parasitic infection called toxoplasmosis. It is also used to treat people with compromised immune systems, like AIDS patients. 

Daraprim has been on the market since 1953, but it turns out that buying the rights to drugs--even generic drugs--and raising their prices has been something of a business model for American pharmaceutical companies. That's capitalism!

Social media was outraged at Mr. Shkreli's price hike. Mr. Shkreli responded by quoting the lyrics to an Eminem song: "And it seems like the media immediately points a finger at me/so I point one back em, but not the index or pinkie."

I only hopes that Mr. Shkreli is never in a position where he needs a life-saving drug that he can't afford. 

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