Genetic Future

To complete my 23andMe trifecta this morning, here’s Steve Murphy frothing at the mouth about the company’s recent antics:

Why is it so vital that physicians,
nurses and others in the healthcare field try to stay above the law?
Because patients lose trust in the system. They begin to think that
their care givers are reckless criminals. And WHO would trust their
life to a criminal???

Apparently,
this stream of thought doesn’t even phase a company like 23andME. You
see, they are blatantly breaking the law in several states. Why? They
are on a mission. Destroy the current healthcare system, shatter the
current ethical way that we currently practice research!
[my emphasis – DM]

Why? They think that the cavemen currently practicing healthcare aren’t in tune with their goofy Singularity!

23andMe as a fiendish group of transhumanist terrorists? I think Steve is onto something – check out this secret memo sent to me by a company insider:

i-2edae0e3ab26f8a4ed1bb40263c6ca66-23andme_terrorist_letter.jpg

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Comments

  1. #1 Paul Jones
    March 23, 2009

    Funny!

  2. #2 Jessica
    March 23, 2009

    Love this – thank you!

  3. #3 ChrisG - GigantiCo
    March 23, 2009

    Ha! Very nice.

  4. #4 Steven Murphy MD
    March 23, 2009

    Biblical Plague? You give them too much credit!

    Funny $h!t

    -Steve

  5. #5 whatever
    March 23, 2009

    23andMe is not the only company that has changed business strategy recently. (wink the right eye)

  6. #6 BioBud
    March 23, 2009

    I think the current healthcare “system” is a wreck. They know more about me and my history at Jiffy Lube than they do at my local hospital (where I was born). Also, the paternalism espoused by the likes of Mr. Murphy is personally scary to me. It’s basically a power grab by physicians afraid that they’re going to loose the potential revenue stream of personal genomics. Its just like when physicians argued against women being able to buy home pregnancy tests because women “couldn’t handle it”…

  7. #7 whatever
    March 23, 2009

    Quote: “It’s basically a power grab by physicians afraid that they’re going to loose the potential revenue stream of personal genomics.”

    Agreed.

  8. #8 Anon
    March 23, 2009

    That gene “sherpa” is sounding more and more nuts with every post.

    At first I hoped that he’d get sued for defamation. But now I hope that he continues. He’ll soon be voted “most valuable player”… by the other team!

  9. #9 Steven Murphy MD
    March 24, 2009

    @ Anon
    Defamation? Try Cyber Squating….

    Seriously, this is NOT about practicing medicine now. It is about using an IRB for your research AND, if you are considered a lab, following laws in each state that they test in. And NOT trying to skirt laws like some silly little 21 year old cyberpunk.

    These are grown adults running companies. They should act like adults who, while they may have a healthy dislike of laws, nonetheless they abide by them.

    How hard is that to understand? The laws in NY and CT and NJ prohibit DTC testing. Yet, they offer testing in CT and NJ and put up some “work around” i.e. law bending scheme on their website.

    So am I crazy for saying that they should abide by the laws which govern them? Or are YOU crazy for saying we should break them?

    -Steve

  10. #10 Charles Iliya Krempeaux
    March 26, 2009

    @Steven Murphy MD, you said…

    …if you are considered a lab, following laws in each state that they test in. And NOT trying to skirt laws like some silly little 21 year old cyberpunk.

    These are grown adults running companies. They should act like adults who, while they may have a healthy dislike of laws, nonetheless they abide by them.

    How hard is that to understand? The laws in NY and CT and NJ prohibit DTC testing. Yet, they offer testing in CT and NJ and put up some “work around” i.e. law bending scheme on their website.

    So am I crazy for saying that they should abide by the laws which govern them? Or are YOU crazy for saying we should break them?

    (Sounds like some Ad Hominem in there. But anyways….) Not everyone believes that one must try to obey the law, as part of their moral code.[1] Many of those with such a frame of view would likely see rent-seeking laws (such as the ones you are alluding to) as something to work-around, rather than something to try to obey.

    (I know this was likely a rhetorical question, but….) You’re not crazy, but you do have beliefs (regarding laws of the US Federal and state governments) that not everyone shares, and perhaps don’t realize that not everyone doesn’t share those beliefs.

    _________________________
    [1] I’m NOT trying to get into an argument about whether a belief that one should try to obey various law systems is good or not. Just stating that not everyone believes that.

  11. #11 Misha
    March 26, 2009

    I look forward to including this memo in my book…:-)

  12. #12 kurt9
    March 26, 2009

    How hard is that to understand? The laws in NY and CT and NJ prohibit DTC testing. Yet, they offer testing in CT and NJ and put up some “work around” i.e. law bending scheme on their website.

    So am I crazy for saying that they should abide by the laws which govern them? Or are YOU crazy for saying we should break them?

    It is very clear that the laws exist simply to allow the MDs to play a “gate keeper” role. Gate keeping is a form of rent seeking in that no value added function is created. In biological terminology this is called parasitism. The fact that laws have been created to preserve such parasitism shows that U.S. society is as corrupt as the East Asian cultures. The laws need to be changed.

    I would recommend that customers and the companies that service them start a political campaign to get these laws changed or eliminated. We are doing just this on the West coast.

    The laws are evil and corrupt and should be changed. These laws are analogous to union “featherbedding” laws.

  13. #13 LicoriceGirl
    March 31, 2009

    I can’t even read the guy anymore. He gives blogging a bad name.

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