“THE ONLY PURPOSE OF A CORPORATION IS TO RETURN PROFITS TO THE INVESTORS.” Sounds like something straight out of THE GODFATHER. Remember all those guys that murdered, or were murdered, or both, who insisted it was “just business?” This philosophy makes a drug cartel a better business model than dairy, automaker, or Microsoft.
This gangster philosophy of the corporations probably owes a lot to second and third generation of gangster families who have”gone straight.” They bring their basic world view with them. There’s not that much difference between having Sammy “whacked” because he was edging into your territory and causing the deaths of people with your industrial pollution. Both make money for the stockholders by eliminating costs.
This way of thinking produces some interesting road blocks for other purposes of the corporation. You might think the primary purpose of a hospital is to save peoples’ lives and enhance their health. How does this work with the stockholder profit objective of keeping the beds full? It certainly makes preventative medicine undesirable.
I learned recently that one of the local hospitals, a great hospital, I might add, has over 200 kinds of prescription drugs on back order. The reason? Although these drugs will save lives and improve health there is not enough profit in them for the pharmaceutical manufacturers. These same manufacturers have wonderful vision statements of joy and healing.
Here’s another pill paradox. Many pain pills are addictive. Prescription drug addiction is the biggest addiction problem in the United States. Adults get it from learning that the pills that stopped the pain make you feel really good when the pain stops. Children get it from their parents’ medicine cabinets, buddies at school bringing treats from their homes, and from valid prescriptions.
It is possible to add chemicals to pain drugs that cause discomfort, if you take more than a prescribed dose. There are also chemicals that can be taken separately that block the effects of the pain pills. The pharmaceutical corporations are not rushing these drugs to market. The illegal sales of these pain pills are as large as, sometimes larger than the legal sales.
The corporation may claim to sell its soul for the benefit of stockholder profits. That claim is not true. The payment for the soul is skimmed off the top in “C” level salaries, bonuses and pension plans. The sharks at the top of the chain swallow most of the benefits. What do they need these huge sums of money for? Why, to live like drug lords!

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