We spent on all pharmaceuticals in the United
States last year $260 billion. That means all those vaccinations to
prevent diseases, all those pills to treat diseases, all those pills to
cure them so we don't have to treat them anymore. We spent in all
branches of all our pharmaceutical suppliers, $260 billion. . . . Last year what did we spend in the United States on soft drinks? $121 billion.
You can't look at the problem
and say, "I want them to do more, better, faster miracles—and not
invest in research, not invest in development, and have those miracles
delivered to me free." It's unrealistic. And people know that about
most things. They do. Nobody expects that just because they've made
computers better they're going to give them to you free.
If we want to sit here and keep assuming we
should be fighting, and that we should be striving to spend less of our
intellectual power and our money on great achievements to come in
healthcare—that we should be fighting to make it a smaller piece of our
economy—I want to know what you want to make a bigger piece of our
economy. What do you want to see the future look like?
I think this debate shows a fundamental lack of vision, a lack of confidence, a lack of understanding of what's possible.