I have seen spam ads from pharmaceutical outlets offering to sell me pills on the side of my Gmail account. I never really thought about the fact that Google has to take money for all those sketchy side advertisements. Whoops. Turns out that they spent a few years slanging pills for international drug dealers.
As early as 2003, Google “was aware of these advertisements by Canadian online pharmacies, and that these pharmacies were in fact unlawfully shipping prescription drugs into the United States,’’ Neronha said. Google actively assisted the pharmacies in developing advertising strategies that would enhance their sales, and its own revenues, he said.
via Google to pay US $500m in drug ad inquiry – The Boston Globe.
No problem. They’ll pay up — giving the United States $500 million in a settlement. Probably a tiny portion of the money they made selling pills.
1. Compare these kinds of settlement deals to the problems that your average “drug dealer” would face. Street drugs? Most street drugs have their origins in pharmaceutical work these days! Want to see something terrible? Perhaps the most scarring documentary I’ve seen in a few years is Vanguard’s “Oxycontin express.” Showcasing a single county in Florida (Dade) which has become the legal pill capitol of the US, the documentary shows the terrible personal impact and the economic profit involved.
2. I think that the prohibition against buying international pharmaceuticals is part of the financial lock down of US citizenry’s declining dollar. A response to lots of prescriptions, less health insurance coverage — the cheap imported medicine seems appealing. And a threat to pharmaceutical companies who can sell in the USA. It seems especially hypocritical given the history of the US suing other nations for making generic versions of US AIDS drugs.