I have written about it before, it is my point of view and my conviction. It is my setting that gives rise to what you could see, and gives rise to what you could know, you already did, but you seemingly decided to ignore it, you decided to enable the greed driven and all parties are smitten by greed, they call it different, yet as I see it, it is mere greed.
How it ends
The end is shown by the BBC (at https://www.bbc.com/news/business-57770557) with “It marks the first step towards the OxyContin painkillers maker paying out $4.3bn (£3.1bn) to settle cases related to the opioid crisis”, it was always about the money. There is an old saying “μυστήριον, Βαβυλὼν ἡ μεγάλη, ἡ μήτηρ τῶν πορνῶν καὶ τῶν βδελυγμάτων τῆς γῆς;” The book of revelations 17:5. Did anyone consider it could optionally reflect on Attorney General Letitia James from the state of New York? We might see and take notice of “While no amount of money will ever compensate for the thousands who lost their lives or became addicted to opioids across our state or provide solace to the countless families torn apart by this crisis, these funds will be used to prevent any future devastation”, will it though?
We see ‘OxyContin is one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs’, and we see that it belongs to the Sackler family, the members who own Purdue Pharma, privately held. They are not guilty, yet they are also not innocent, greed drove them towards their billions, yet they are not the demons we all paint them to be, to not be innocent and to be a demon is to be a different cattle of fish and any Attorney General could tell you that, but they have the money and they all wanted the money, the real demon.
Yes, there are culprits in this story. You see some sources give us that in 1996 316,000 prescriptions were dispensed, it grew to an impressive amount topping over 14 million prescriptions with an estimated value of $3,000,000,000. The issue we see everyone painting over is ‘prescriptions dispensed’, this is not something that a person can get, it needs a doctor and it needs a pharmacist. The top 5 are Walgreens Company, CVS Health, Walmart, Rite Aid Corp and Krogers company. They own a little over 25,000 stores and around 113,000 pharmacists. There are ere players in the game. Yet how many Oxycontin did they hand out? How many doctors did these prescriptions?
You see, the interesting side is not what we see, but what we saw on TV in 1978, it was an episode of Lou Grant and that episode (season 2 episode 1 “Pills”) shows us the larger station that plays here and THEY gave the people (government also) the goods 20 years earlier. We all want one demon, but there was not one, there were a truckload of them, but the US government cannot fill their pockets there.
It is the first fatality in any war, there is no exception and this is not different. The Sackler family is not innocent, but they are not the guilty demons that the media and the flaming screamers claim them to be. It was simple and it was out there. 14,000,000 prescriptions and only doctors can make them. Yes, we see “lawsuits regarding overprescription of addictive pharmaceutical drugs” yet it is given out by doctors and it is handed out by pharmacies. Yet the New Yorker in 2020 gives us “Purdue Pharma played a “special role” in the opioid crisis because the company “was the first to set out, in the nineteen-nineties, to persuade the American medical establishment that strong opioids should be much more widely prescribed—and that physicians’ longstanding fears about the addictive nature of such drugs were overblown”, I get that and we should understand that, yet in this (at https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/opioid-manufacturer-purdue-pharma-pleads-guilty-fraud-and-kickback-conspiracies) we also get “Purdue also paid kickbacks to providers to encourage them to prescribe even more of its products”, so who were those providers? Who received these kickbacks? We are not likely to see those are we, we will merely see words like ‘settlement’ and ‘undisclosed parties’, innocence was the first victim to fall, none of the players were innocent. And the government is equally guilty. The NPR (at https://www.npr.org/2020/12/22/949309266/doj-sues-walmart-over-unlawful-distribution-of-controlled-substances) gave us in December 2020 “The Justice Department is suing Walmart. In a civil suit filed today, the Justice Department alleges that the company’s pharmacies and warehouses helped fuel the opioid crisis. Walmart’s pharmacy chain dispensed billions of opioid pills, including OxyContin and other highly addictive medications. And this lawsuit claims that the company broke the law hundreds of thousands of times”, so that took a decade? And when we consider ‘broke the law hundreds of thousands of times’, how come that store is still open? And it is Brian Mann who gives us “according to the DOJ, Walmart did exactly the opposite, filling huge numbers of unsafe and illegal prescriptions, allegedly doing so for years without alerting the government”, and there we have it, the crux of the Lou Grant episode, the evidence that set the caper in motion in 1978, but that is not all, the article also gives us “NPR has been looking into this. And we found that some of the company’s own former pharmacists tried for years to raise the alarm about allegedly illegal activity. Ashwani Sheerin (ph) is a pharmacist who worked for Walmart in rural Michigan. He told NPR he saw real red flags”, not all pharmacists are evil, but we see the stage of revenue pushing, it is greed in action and when we see ‘tried for years to raise the alarm’ we see that the Justice department is not innocent either and the media is not innocent either. A stage where they all love revenue, circulation and ringing the bell loudly was apparently not an option. So whilst we see “had reached an agreement with Purdue that would see its owners, the wealthy Sackler family, pay an additional $50m”, I wonder where Walmart is in this and with them a whole range of pharmacies. Because it was never Walmart alone, not with an annual 14,000,000 prescriptions.
There might not be one, but us all recognising that Justice reacted well over a decade too late, that is as I personally see it, the FDA dropped the ball, likely more than once, especially as this has been going on for years, optionally well over a decade. And it is Attorney General Letitia James with “prevent any future devastation” who has the ball now, I wonder if she drops it, or hands it over to someone else, as NPR gives us pointing the finger at Walmart, but they are not alone and the records of the FDA are also in question. When I look into ‘Federal Regulations for Clinical Investigators’, I wonder if it helps investigations, or slows them down.
You see Oxycontin is a schedule 8 drug and we get “Doctors must follow state and territory laws when prescribing oxycodone and must notify, or receive approval from, the appropriate health authority”, you see this matters as pharmacies need a doctors prescription, so which doctors were behind the 14,000,000 annual prescriptions?
So there you have it, I made no claim that the Sackler family was innocent, they are not, but they are not the demons we see them to be, this is a much larger problem and it was left unchecked for well over a decade, or there was at the very least a decade of inaction and too many filled their pockets and yes the Sackler benefitted, but they were not alone, Walmart was part, but there too they were not alone and the doctors who prescribed these pills, what is their price for a prescription? As I personally see it, the law enabled greed to continue for too long, the law and greed enabled each other, and the end is still not in sight, no matter what Attorney General Letitia James and in this she is not alone either, doesn’t San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston and Philadelphia not have any Attorney Generals? Where were they in the 2000-2021?