We have been following the latest melodrama involving a "greedy" Mylan, and numerous "humanistic" US politicians, all the way up to the Democratic presidential candidate, exchange blows over the company's dramatic price increases of its EpiPen anti-allergy medication, with a healthy dose of amusement for one simple reason: if Congress wants to crack down on someone, it should crack down on itself.
After all, the only reason Mylan has been able to pass the kinds of price increases that Congress is now blasting it for, is because of US laws and regulations; laws which incidentally, have been determined in Washington's backroom bribe parlor, i.e. the corner offices of thousands of local lobby organizations dispensing with billions of dollars in "client" funds.
Clients such as the companies listed below.
Which brings us to this question: dear Congress, have you received millions in lobby dollars from the US pharmaceutical industry.
Or perhaps Congress denies that virtually every single pharmaceutical company operating in the US has spent millions on influence peddling pardon lobbying, in recent years? Perhaps, just like in the case of the Clinton foundation defense, that money was not used to buy favors and influence legislation, but was purely for humanitarian reasons?
So how much money has the US pharma industry spent? According to OpenSecrets, so far in 2016, the amount is $129 million, rising to $2.3 billion over the past decade.
Here is a small selection of the 369 lobbying "clients" OpenSecrets keeps track of: one can see Mylan toward the bottom.
And, as usual, we conclude with our favorite chart showing the relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and Congress, according to which every dollar spent by big Pharma on lobbying generates a return of 77,500%!
And since virtually all representatives and senators suddenly appear so eager to accuse Mylan and its CEO of greed, we look forward to each and every member of Congress explaining to the American public, and their constituency, precisely where all their lobby dollars have came from, what laws were enacted as a result, and most importantly, what they spent the money on.