Henry Waxman sent a warm letter of solidarity when Thailand's military junta seized the patents of HIV drugs recently. The number of pharmaceutical patents rose to 11 and the range of products that the Thai government's drug company -- which has never been able to make WHO quality medicines -- would copy has expanded to include cancer and heart disease in the wake of Waxman's love letter.
Nothing like appeasement to embolden a global bully. In the January board meeting of the WHO, Thailand 's representative, Dr. Suwit Wibulpolprasert, declared that if an influenza pandemic hit, he'd counsel Bangkok to hold Western tourists hostage until those countries gave Thailand the necessary vaccines.
And if they didn't?
I wonder what sort of letter Waxman is planning to write now.