Sunday, January 10, 2010

Blood Sucking Mega-Corporations

It's not just a figure of speech. This mega-corp made its money by literally sucking poor people's blood.
Cerberus Capital, one of Wall Street’s most notoriously ruthless leveraged-buyout firms (or “private equity firms” in PC-speak), recently made a $1.8 billion killing on its human plasma investment, a company called Talecris. Talecris was purchased for a mere $82.5 million just four years earlier, meaning Cerberus made 23 times its investment on human plasma. This was accomplished by the most savage, heartless means possible: by paying peanuts to impoverished human plasma donors, who increasingly come from Mexican border towns to blood-pumping stations set up on the American side, jacking up the price of plasma by restricting supply (a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission accused Cerberus Plasma Holdings of “operat[ing] as an oligopoly”), and then selling the refined products to the most desperately ill—patients suffering from hemophilia, severe burns, multiple sclerosis and autoimmune deficiencies. The products cost so much—one, IVIG (intravenous immunoglobulin) cost twice the price of gold as of last summer—that American health insurance companies have been dropping or denying their policyholders in increasing numbers, endangering untold numbers of people.
As I said a couple of days ago, I think we're missing the boat by going after the politicians. It really is the mega-corps that are killing us and they're taking over the world. Consider this:
1. Of the 100 largest economies in the world, 51 are now global corporations; only 49 are countries.

2. The combined sales of the world's Top 200 corporations are far greater than a quarter of the world's economic activity.
Much more eye-opening statistics at that link and they're on the oldish side. It's only become worse. Really thinking, if the people want to take the power back, first we need to break up the mega-corps. [h/t Lance Mannion]

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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