I’ve never quite understood how my liberal friends can laugh at those who claim there is a vast conspiracy of scientists who are lying about climate change while at the same time embracing their own conspiracy theories about vaccines or cancer cures.
Seriously? I mean, I don’t trust the pharmaceutical industry either, but to hold that they are all conspiring to prevent a cure for cancer because it’s more profitable to treat patients than cure them? You honestly and sincerely believe that?
Let’s look at why such a belief is nonsense:
- This is a very American way of looking at it, as if no other country was researching a cure. Health care may be profit-generating here in this country, but we are the only advanced country where that is the case — where your health depends on your income. Other countries are not that way, and in fact, if they could find a cure, it would greatly reduce the costs for their national health care policy. In the rest of the world, finding a cure is the way to have more money.
- A lot of research happens in colleges where profit-making is not the goal, or with non-profit groups like the American Cancer Society. It’s not all about making money even here.
- The medical providers may make more money treating someone than curing them, but who pays that money? Most of the time, it’s the insurance companies. Insurance companies in America really run things, and there’s nothing they’d love more than finding a cure that will save them all that money.
- The person or organization that cures cancer will be heroes. They will win Nobel prizes and be praised everywhere. The incentive for finding a cure vastly outweighs whatever benefits may be given to individuals for not finding the cure.
- Researchers have family and friends too. They’ve watched loved ones die from cancer. You really think they don’t care? You really think they’re all mustachioed Snidley Whiplash types going “Nyah ha ha! I am on the brink of saving my wife from cancer but I will keep that secret so I can keep making lots of money”? Further, let’s not forget that even CEOs of pharmaceutical groups (and their family members) have died from cancer — you think they weren’t trying to find a cure?
- Cures have been found. Great strides have been made against cancer. There are lots of different kinds of cancer as well, so there’s not going to be one cure that solves them all anyway. If this conspiracy theory were true, none of these cures would have been found, right?
- There are lots of companies making various treatments for cancer, and they’re all in competition. The one that finds the cure will have a monopoly on that cure, and will make much more money selling that cure at that point.
While it is important to be a skeptic, you need to be a skeptic about everything or else you’re being hypocritical. Treat your own personal beliefs with the same skepticism you give other beliefs and you may be surprised at how many of your own beliefs will also fall.