Wednesday, April 14, 2010
War-torn Somerset Street
Wanted poster on a pharmacy window in our west side neighborhood. That's our Yasir in the centre picture, yes sir. Grammar is apparently not on the curriculum at drug mart skool.
Still, I cannot be the only one wondering at how quickly the Ontario government trotted out those 'fighting for the little guy' responses to "big pharma". The distrust of the ordinary citizen for big government, big business, big media, big religion, or other vested interests ... is huge for a good reason.
Like American citizens who wondered how cutting billions from medicare could make the health care system better. Or how American health care reform primarily "extended" coverage to the single lowest user group of the medical system by forcing them to pay health premiums while leaving 25 million needy residents of the USA uncovered and untaxed. (Was that about extending coverage or extending taxes?) Or how removing cigarattes from Ontario drug stores (surely they are a drug, and probably a bad one...) into convenience stores made sense.
I recall my last visit to Holland finding restuarants largely unvisitable because of the dense smoke fumes -- the tolerance for mary jane and other practices that we puritanically supress also means they did not regulate tobacco use very much (the situation is now changing, but the hypocracy remains both there and here).
Any voter capable of putting two thoughts together has to realize that the government wants save X billion dollars by cutting druggist payments, but the drug stores cannot take the "hit" without there being some consequences. Expect a longer hike through the expanded cosmetics section on your way to the reduced-hours pharmacy counter. The old prescription of government wacking greedy private enterprise isn't the easy sell it once was.