UnNews:US Vital-gas company defends 5000% price increase
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US Vital-gas company defends 5000% price increase
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Tuesday, August 22, 2017, 01:17:UTC)(
28 September 2015
NEW YORK -- The head of an international “vital gases” company has defended his company's decision to raise the price of “Air”, a 500 billion-year-old gas used by fish, bugs, animals, planets and humans. Turing CEO Martin Shkreli increased the price of Air by 5,000%. This is a price hike from 0 cents per breath, up to 5,000 cents ($50) per breath per breather.
Turing Gases acquired the rights to Air in August. Shkreli has said that the company will use the money it makes from sales of Air to take control of the entire human race, or some other form of philanthropy. “Water is fast being nationalized, so why not Air?” Shkreli smiled. "Water, like Air, is also a mixture of the vital gases, hydrogen and oxygen, and water now costs more than nitro."
The common name ‘Air’ is given to atmospheric gases used in breathing and photosynthesis. By volume, dry air contains nitrogen, oxygen, argon, carbon dioxide, and copious amounts of carbon monoxide and bovine flatulence. So there you have the Air formula that anyone should be able to make. But no longer, now that Shkreli has nailed down the global copyright on Air as well as pure oxygen.
Generally, with the exception of India, Air content and atmospheric pressure vary at different layers, and air suitable for the survival of terrestrial plants and terrestrial animals is found only in Earth's atmosphere. Since the beginning of time these vital gases had cost about $0 to produce, but Mr Shkreli, a former hedge fund manager, said that does not include other costs like legal and copyright fees, which have increased dramatically in recent years.
Agreeing a price hike for any vital gas is a tricky business. In the UK, the National Health Service is the main buyer and prices are set through bribery schemes between manufacturer and the government, who are always trying to strike the right balance of serving living beings and generating private fortunes to keep the air pipeline going - while all the while keeping the profit at zero.
Previously profits on Air and Water were capped at 0% to stop price gougers from adding a huge profit. But with acquisition of its copyright by a private corporate entity, free Air is no longer available. In the US, the main air buyers are private insurance companies as well as the government through the Department of Atmospheric Anomalies and Vital Systems (DAAVS).
According to 14-year-old CEO Martin Shkreli, “Air is now a market and prices can go up and down, depending on what people are willing to pay. We needed to turn a profit on this commodity," Mr Shkreli told Bloomberg TV. "Those fools before us were actually giving it away.”
He says the practice is certainly in line with the rest of industries and finance. And certainly making an excess profit is the very backbone of free trade. "These days, modern pharmaceutical drugs can cost $100,000 or more per pill, whereas Air was still underpriced relative to its peers," he told Bloomberg TV.
On Twitter, Mr Shkreli mocked several users who questioned the company's decision, including calling the reporter from Unnews "a moron". At least he got that right.
- Repeater "US pharmaceutical company defends 5,000% price increase". BBC News, September 28, 2015