Super-exciting news: Hillary will cure Alzheimer's within a decade

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Published by: Dan Calabrese on Thursday December 24th, 2015

Through the magic of drug price controls, you see.

Prepare to be informed by the Hillary campaign and their media servants that Republicans oppose curing Alzheimer's. You know it's coming. You also know that when Democrats propose things like this, they're counting pretty heavily on your ability to forget that they can't even build a web site for you to shop for health insurance, nor can they protect a consulate under attack by terrorists.

But they know how to appeal to your emotions:

Hillary Clinton on Tuesday proposed a $2 billion annual research initiative to find a cure for Alzheimer's disease, the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, in the next decade.

"For me, the bottom line is if we're the kind of nation that cares for citizens and supports families," Clinton said, "then we've got work to do and we need to do it better when it comes to diseases like Alzheimer's."

Clinton's plan would quadruple the amount spent on Alzheimer's research last year and would be paid for by tax reform proposals, similar to other campaign policies she's rolled out.

"We can get payoff on this in ways that right now we can't even imagine," Clinton said at a campaign stop here.

She's actually right about that. I can't imagine any payoff from this, because there would be none. The Wall Street Journal explains just how disingenuous it is to suggest you're going to cure Alzheimer's if only you spend more money trying:

By the way, her Alzheimer’s-cure pander couldn’t be more transparent—or disingenuous. There probably isn’t a more difficult scientific challenge littered with more failed experiments. Between 2002 and 2012, 413 clinical drug trial candidates for Alzheimer’s, dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases went bust, and while no study has attempted to add up the costs, they surely reach tens of billions of dollars.

Despite these setbacks, some 93 medicines are in the Alzheimer’s pipeline today. If HHS and Mrs. Clinton succeed in outlawing the profit motive in drug development, they’ll sabotage biotech innovation and beget fewer new drugs.

The one thing Mrs. Clinton just might be able to do as matter of policy is to impose the price controls she's got a lot of people believing are necessary for pharmaceuticals. Of course, there are all kinds of reasons drug prices are so high, many of them resulting directly from existing regulatory policy. Forcing prices artificially low while leaving the regulations in place will make it almost impossible for people to get some of the existing drugs, and will make it extremely difficult for pharmaceutical companies to develop new ones - which sort of contradicts the whole we're-going-to-cure-Alzheimer's claim. (By the way, what's with not pandering to cancer patients too? Hey, why not? Or did I somehow miss that one?)

Some of this, of course, is an appeal to the inclination of Democrat voters to embrace aspirational-type talk from politicians. They wax nostalgic for JFK and his go-to-the-moon-within-the-decade talk. And of course, that one we achieved, although sadly he wasn't alive to see it. This is the sort of thing Democrats believe deep in their guts about government - that if somehow we all just come together and commit ourselves to the effort, with Washington taking the lead of course, that there's nothing we can't do. That's why they didn't think it was so absurd that Obama promised to heal the planet and stop the rise of the oceans. They want to believe, and Hillary knows many of them will respond in the same way to a promise like this - while anyone who criticizes it might as well be sitting there laughing at Grandpa for not remembering your name when you come to visit.

Oh, and paying for it via "tax reform"? That's a beauty. All she needs to add is that she'll eliminate "waste, fraud and abuse" and she'll have checked every conceivable BS box required for the perfect nonsense politician promise.

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