Free riding attitude is everywhere. People want some subsidies from somewhere else, whether public or private. In healthcare in particular, they want government to provide affordable if not free healthcare (medicines, hospitalization, physician visit, etc.) to people even if would mean large-scale borrowings and perennial budget deficit every year. They want private enterprises in the health sector to be heavily regulated -- their products and services, their pricing and promos. That is how drug price control, issuance of compulsory licensing (CL), special CL and related government policies, are created and expanded.
Meanwhile, here's another chart from http://www.phrma.org/sites/default/files/159/phrma_chart_pack.pdf, where the above chart of R&D spending was lifted.
This debate and the various arguments will be repeated in the future, only the details and circumstances will change but the philosophical battle of private property vs. state/collective property, of more competition vs. more regulation, of rule of law vs. rule of men, will continue and resurface.
I just hope that people will stick to issues when they discuss and debate, present objective arguments and facts and avoid emotional name-calling or labeling. Then a more objective or more balanced compromises will be reached.-------
Update, March 19, 2012
After my last posting above in facebook, there were several comments more, below. Peter saw this blog post, he did not protest that I used his comments since nothing is revised or added, posted as is.
IPR and Medicines 10: Innovator Drugs and Generics Complementation, July 13, 2011
IPR and medicines 11: When blockbusters' patent expires, September 07, 2011
IPR and Medicines 17: Why are Drugs Still Expensive After Patents have Expired? November 17, 2011