Calling All Charlatans, Houston we have a problem!

“Mayday mayday, calling all charlatans, do you copy?. Folks we are going to have a problem, anticipate a crash landing of the maiden flight Pigs of Apollo. This is Captain Snort and in-flight crew, delta Pigs in Space…. Do you copy, over?” [inaudible rattling sound]….. Roger, Copy. Observation from the ground, we see the craft about to nosedive; i think this is what i see in the following Associated Press Story from a local Journal Gazette February 5th: Nothing can further illustrate what takes place when pigs fly and crash land. Quoted material is lined up first and my commentary is fashionably inserted to infuse vitality albeit washed and rinsed in our magic formulae, hang tight folks here we go:

Drug Exec takes fifth, Angers Lawmakers, Washington– Infuriating members of Congress, a smirking Martin Shkreli took the fifth at a capitol hill hearing Thursday when asked about his jacking up of drug prices, then promptly went on Twitter and insulted his questioners as “imbeciles”.The brash 32-year-old entrepreneur who has been vilified as the new face of pharmaceutical-industry greed was summoned by the house oversight (you gotta be kidding me right?  Mr Smith goes to Washington, for real!) and Government Reform Committee, which is investigating soaring prices for critical medicines. ( before we go any further, arent these the same politicians who take contributions and i mean generous contributions from the Pharmaceutical companies?) ” Pharmaceutical and health product companies injected $51 million into the 2012 federal elections and nearly $32 million into the 2014 elections, according to the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP). ” The industry has already spent nearly $10 million on the 2016 elections and is expected to spend more, especially now that Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have made drug prices a campaign issue with separate proposals to rein them in with new regulations.” Basically, the lawmakers are pissed because its a showboating exercise in nonsensical theater, while behind closed doors there is in-fighting between the parties about who did not get enough of a cut of the so-called dirty money. Republicans seem to get a larger chunk of the slice and dice pie!  Four times he intoned: “on advice of counsel i invoke my fifth amendment privilege against self-incrimination and respectfully decline to answer your question” Lawmakers erupted. Rep Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the top Democrat on the committee, all but told Shkreli to wipe the smile off his face. “I Call this Money blood money…coming out of the pockets of hardworking Americans,” he said as Shkreli sat through the lecture. “i know your smiling but I’m serious, Sir” Mr cummings said “i truly believe you can become a force for tremendous good. All i ask is that you reflect on it. No I don’t ask, i beg that you reflect on it” (in everyday speech Cummings may be saying or rather sending the poor CEO a message to come to the back room and make a deal with us stop with the giving the Republicans all the loot, make nice and share more generously kindly really!) The former hedge fund manager with a frat-boy swagger has been reviled in recent months for buying Daraprim, the only approved drug for a rare and sometimes deadly parasitic infection, and unapologetically raising its price more than fifty-fold. (folks this is the point where you never take up the challenge of attending a sausage making exhibition at the local meat cutting factory, at a commercial farm near you, trust me you don’t want to know how-to-make-sausages, your skin will crawl and separate between the outer skin and inner layers). Shkreli is out on $5 million bail after being arrested in New York for securities fraud charges unrelated to the price increase. Shkreli was dismissed within an hour into the hearing, but not before Rep Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, shouted down a request by Shkreli Attorney to speak. Lawmakers instead took turns denouncing his conduct and attitude. Minutes after he left and even before the hearing had ended- Shkreli thumbed his nose at the committee. “hard to accept that these imbeciles represent the people in our government,” the former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals tweeted. ( this guy should be taught some Italian and finish the sentences with Kapische mr congressmen). Article continues, Blah blah blah and moments later in the article; After Shkreli’s departure Turing’s chief commercial officer and the interim CEO of Canada’s largest drug-maker, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, received a bi-partisan lashing from the lawmakers. Internal documents released by the committee show that Valeant and Turing have  made a practice of buying and then dramatically raising prices for low-cost drugs given to patients with life-threatening conditions such as heart disease, AIDS and Cancer. Chaffetz an admitted “conservative guy” who accepts that companies need to make profits, said he was disgusted. and finally, the last piece of the sausage-making process; Shkreli said in an email to one contact: “we raised the price from $1,700 per bottle to $75,000. Should be a very handsome investment for all of us” This dear reader is why my cousin fast “Charlie KK” always told me “better to watch two mad stray dogs fight to the death” than watch this peep show in Congress as the machinations go on unabated! I still shudder to think about Sausage making at its ferocious “best”.  Is there a new meaning to “Fat Cats on wall street?” haven’t we heard that famous sound bite by some famous political figurehead talk endlessly about “Big fat cats” on wall street buying influence and power and basically owning Washington DC. I could swear (oops, momma i promise i won’t swear, will keep my mouth sanctified) that this was once a clarion call by the top figurehead now occupying very high office in the land? I’m just saying its liberty when we can opine and learn as we ponder!….and this ends part 1 of the ongoing saga of legal drug money in politics!

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