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Bad Medicine Report Details Influence of Pharma in DC Budget Failure

Released to the Press

September 25, 2013

 

New Report Analyzes Interest Group Influence in Blocking Proposed Cost Saving Measures in Medicare

Report Finds Influence of Pharmaceutical Industry as Major Impasse to Common Sense Budget Fixes

Congress has failed to act on a commonsense, good-government approach to controlling health care costs. The significant resources the pharmaceutical industry has put toward influence and access has rendered Congress unable to act in the public interest.

Bad Medicine Report.image

 

Bad Medicine: Pharmaceuticals’ Prescription for Profits Over People, released by the Alliance for a Just Society details the overwhelming influence of Big PhRMA on congressional outcomes and finds that the imbalance created by industry spending harms both the interest of the American people and our democratic process.

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Taking on Predatory Lending in Idaho

Thousands of Idaho residents are strapped for cash. The economic recession has devastated the lives of Idahoans across the state. As the need to make the dollar stretch increase, financial resources from traditional banks decrease.

Payday loan centers have seized an opportunity to profit from the misfortune of those in need.  Predatory lenders have lined the sidewalks of low-income and communities of color with promises of instant cash and no credit checks.  Having no available alternatives, residents are left to turn to payday loan centers for relief; but that relief keeps coming with a cycle of interest rates as high or higher than 520%. Read more

Daley’s Glossary: Guideposts in the Labyrinth of our current Fiscal Debate

Listening to the current national fiscal debate is like standing before a labyrinth with only your ears to guide you. There are strange terms and “impending deadlines” being thrown out into the airwaves and the only things to be sure of– is the spot marked “you are here.”

Because the wonky debate inside the DC Beltway will be conducted in head-spinning clichés that the media like so much, I feel compelled to offer a brief series of definitions to clarify the situation and make our imperative clear:

We must continue to push cutting prescription drug costs and increasing taxes on Wall Street to fill gaps in the government’s revenues. We must continue to insist that there be no cuts to social insurance programs American families need for their security. Stay strong. This is an historic fight.

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The Distasteful Politics of Food

How, what, and where we eat everyday is strongly influenced by the federal government, in partnership with major food corporations, through a piece of legislation called the Farm Bill. Many of the social determinates of health that impact our communities find their roots in the Farm Bill a massive piece of legislation up for renewal in 2012.

We need to pay close attention to this legislation in the coming months. In particular, we need to focus on the ways in which the Farm Bill enables corporate practices that contribute to racial disparities in health, set us back in terms of racial equity, and promote greed over need. In a climate where Congress is looking to make cuts, corporate agribusiness will be working hard to protect their interests, leaving the rest of us with a huge tab that will cost not just in dollars but also in lives. Read more

Corporate Interests Dominate List of Top Super Committee Donors

Four banks, two large corporations, a conservative political action committee (PAC), and a law firm serving corporate, industrial, and financial institutions dominate the list of top 10 campaign donors that contributed to members of the bipartisan congressional “Super Committee,” setting the stage for a historic revenue showdown.

These entities contributed a total of $4.5 million, or 79 percent of total contributions on the top 10 list, to members of the newly formed group of six Democrats and six Republicans, according to a study by MapLight.org. Read more

Hitting the Jackpot

This is part thirteen in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

In a state known for excess and wealth that does not extend to most of its residents, the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN) dug up the dirt on political campaign contributions. PLAN published three reports, one of which they titled the “Jackpot Report,” because they had found a stash of money politicians had been hiding from public record. Read more

Project Vote Smart

Role in the Landscape

This is part twelve in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

Project Vote Smart (PVS) is a transparency/data organization with a vast collection of data on candidates and incumbents. Their website, http://votesmart.org/, allows users to search at the presidential, congressional, gubernatorial and state legislative levels. Read more