DOJ will support tobacco-like lawsuit against opioid manufacturers

Sessions is on the opioid warpath.

But how did we get to the crisis that is ravaging parts of the country?

Much of it, as the government announces its effort to curb opioid use, is due to bad government policy.

Pharma is considered by many to be the most powerful lobby in Washington DC. Consider that. More powerful than oil. More powerful than labor. More powerful than the Military Industrial Complex.

Policies were written that encouraged the use of opioids. Privileges were granted to opioid manufacturers from government.

One of the fears of course is that Sessions in his drug war zealotry will pursue policies that are as destructive as prior policies just in different ways. (This is all too likely. That’s the nature of the “drug war.”)

For instance the Attorney General says that he wants to reduce the number of opioid prescriptions and squeeze the supply. Given that government helped facilitate the flood of opiates I suppose that, in a weird way makes sense. However the administration is also going after kratom, a drug that helps people get off of opioids. This is just stupid. Sessions wants to lock down the supply of opioids but not give addicts any reasonable way out of their addiction? That is not smart and will create all sorts of unintended consequences. Not to mention unneeded suffering.

(From The Washington Free Beacon)

Perhaps the most significant move Sessions announced Tuesday, however, was his decision to have the Justice Department support the enormous, multi-district lawsuit brought by hundreds of cities, municipalities, and hospitals against opioid producers and distributors. That case, which some say mirrors past litigation against big tobacco firms, seeks to recover costs which the plaintiffs say they were forced to incur due to deceptive marketing practices which directly caused the opioid crisis.

The Justice Department will support that lawsuit by arguing that the federal government has also been force to bear those costs through federal health programs and through law enforcement efforts.

“The federal government has borne substantial costs as a result of the opioid crisis. The Medicare prescription drug program, for example, paid more than $4 billion for opioids in 2016. The hard-working taxpayers of this country deserve to be compensated by those whose illegal activity contributed to those costs. And we will go to court to ensure that the American people receive the compensation they deserve,” Sessions said.

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