Shnelvar Slams Heath's Health Ad Regs
Ralph Shnelvar for Governor For Immediate Release
July 23, 2002
Libertarian Gubernatorial Nominee Ralph Shnelvar Unveils Candidate Advertising Disclosure Plan
[This press release is a parody of Rollie Heath's absurd drug company disclosure plan. The media should refer to Mr. Heath's press release of July 12 and compare these two press releases side-by-side.]
BOULDER - On July 12, Democratic Gubernatorial Nominee Rollie Heath unveiled a plan to require drug companies to disclose the value, nature, and purpose of their marketing activities in Colorado.
In response, Ralph Shnelvar today unveils his Candidate Advertising Disclosure Plan.
"The cost of manipulating and lying to the electorate is skyrocketing. The state is paying more and more money for pork barrel projects and many Coloradoans have trouble paying their taxes," Shnelvar said at a press conference on the steps of the Kremlin.
"While Coloradoans are struggling to pay their taxes, political candidates like Rollie Heath have increased spending on television advertisements and marketing to a mostly unimpressed citizenry," Shnelvar said. "Rollie Heath wants to deny drug companies the ability to compete fairly in the marketplace with other industrial sectors and I want to deny Rollie Heath the ability to compete fairly in the political arena. Fair's fair."
"Coloradoans should be forced to recite daily how much money is being spent on TV advertising and marketing by candidates," Shnelvar said. "If they did this religiously then, clearly, they would vote for the candidate who does the least advertising. We all know that advertising doesn't work."
The plan is modeled after a bill signed into law by Governor Dean.
"We're not reinventing the wheel here," said Shnelvar. "This plan doesn't work anywhere but, with luck, we can bamboozle the voters in Colorado."
"Rollie Heath is promising to give voters free medication while those same voters begin to think that they are entitle to exotic locations for vacation," said Vladimir Putin, former head of the Soviet KGB and 2004 presidential candidate, who is in Colorado to help raise money for Shnelvar. "It's a brilliant plan to tax cigarette smokers because most cigarette smokers are poor, befuddled, won't vote, and thus won't miss the money, anyway. In any event, they only represent 25% of the voters so we won't mind taxing them."
"The aggregate costs of political campaigns have increased dramatically in recent years. According to economist Robert Samuelson, total expenditures for all federal, state, and local campaigns have increased from $300 million in 1968 to over $3 billion in 1992. The principal factors driving up campaign costs have been the increasing importance of television and radio in campaigns and rapidly escalating media costs." (From: February 15, 2000, Governor George W. Bush: Campaign Finance Reform Proposals. Honest.)
"The idea that drug companies are somehow less entitled to the use of TV than Rollie Heath is irony of the first degree," wrote O'Henry (who knows a little about irony).
"These promises of free gifts to voters could influence the kinds of candidates that citizens vote for. Citizens might choose more expensive taxes (as long as others pay for them) when lower taxes would work better," said Putin, who is a politician currently living in Russia but willing to emigrate to the U.S. to work for our defense industry.
"There will be a reduction in both taxes and bribes if this plan is passed into law," O'Henry said as he was handed an unmarked - but quite thick - envelope.
"The tax crisis can be solved," Shnelvar said. "But it will take strong leadership. For the last 20 years we have socialized medicine but it takes hard work and courage to unwind the evil that has come from this scheme. Coloradoans are lucky to have a Gubernatorial candidate like me because I am willing to tackle this simple but politically deadly problem."
The Shnelvar initiative requires:
* Candidates to disclose to the Colorado Board of Incumbency the value, nature and purpose of their marketing activities in Colorado. If the Incumbency board finds that the advertising hurts incumbents then the advertising will be deemed a terrorist act and the candidate will have to pay the incumbent three times the value of the advertising.
* Candidates to disclose the value, nature and purpose of any tax incentive, tax, tax increment financing scheme, breach of TABOR, fee, subsidy or other economic benefit provided to any corporation, special interest group, office holder, commissioner, or bureaucrat in Colorado. Bribes paid to bureaucrats outside of Colorado are exempt from reporting.
* Special favors, access, and other consideration given to media to be disclosed.
* All expenditures, per voter, of less than $25 are excluded. The candidate is free to determine that a 2002 Lexus has a fair market value less than $25.
* Scholarship funds paid to voters voting for the incumbent are excluded.
* Campaign trade secrets will be kept confidential except when leaked.
"It's time we get a handle on campaign costs," Shnelvar said. "When my initiative is passed into law, candidates will change their behavior and Coloradoans should see the cost of their government go down," Shnelvar said hoping that both the media and the electorate catch the over-the-top sarcasm.
"Ralph Shnelvar has shown that strong, innovative leadership can bring about solutions to the challenges we face as states and as a nation," Sydney Shnelvar said when she was four years old.
Rollie Heath For Governor
July 12, 2002
Democratic Gubernatorial Nominee Rollie Heath Unveils Drug Company Disclosure Plan
DENVER - Democratic Gubernatorial Nominee Rollie Heath today unveiled a plan to require drug companies to disclose the value, nature and purpose of their marketing activities in Colorado.
"The cost of prescription drugs is skyrocketing. The state is paying more and more money for drugs through the Medicaid program and many Coloradans have trouble paying for pharmaceuticals," Heath said at a news conference at the State Capitol today with Vermont Gov. Howard Dean.
"While Coloradans are struggling to pay prescription drug costs pharmaceutical companies have increased spending on television advertisements and marketing to health care professionals," Heath said.
"Coloradans should know how much money is being spent on TV advertising and marketing by drug companies," Heath said.
The plan is modeled after a bill signed into law by Governor Dean.
"We're not reinventing the wheel here," said Heath. "This works in Vermont and it can work here."
"Drug companies are giving doctors free dinners and flying them to exotic locations for vacation," said Dean, a 2004 presidential candidate who is in Colorado to help raise money for Heath.
In 2001 the pharmaceutical industry spent $19 billion nationally on advertising and promotion, according to IMS Health, a consulting firm. That's more than double the $9.1 billion the industry spent five years ago.
"These gifts could influence the kinds of drugs doctors prescribe. They might choose more expensive drugs when generic or less expensive medication would work just as well," said Dean, who is a doctor.
"There will be a reduction in prescription drug costs if this plan is passed into law," Dean said.
"The health care crisis can be solved," Dean said. "But it will take strong leadership. We've made great strides in Vermont and we'll make more but it takes hard work and courage. Coloradans are lucky to have a Gubernatorial candidate like Rollie Heath who is willing to tackle this complicated problem."
The Heath initiative requires:
* Drug manufacturers to disclose to the Colorado Board of Pharmacy the value, nature and purpose of their marketing activities in Colorado.
* Pharmaceutical manufacturers to disclose the value, nature and purpose of any gift, fee, subsidy or other economic benefit provided to any physician, hospital, nursing home, pharmacist or health benefit plan administrator in Colorado.
* Speaking and other fees paid to doctors have to be disclosed.
* All free samples, clinical trial and material having a value of less than $25 are excluded.
* Scholarship funds are excluded.
* Trade secrets will be kept confidential.
"It's time we get a handle on prescription drug costs," Heath said. "When this initiative is passed into law doctors and drug companies will change their behavior and Coloradans should see the cost of their drugs go down," Heath said.
"Governor Dean has shown that strong, innovative leadership can bring about solutions to the challenges we face as states and as a nation," Heath said.