Saturday, October 20, 2007

Proposition 15

Trowbridges article, “Texas shouldn’t take on the burden of proposition 15”, is written to try to persuade its readers to vote no on a proposition that would give funds to cancer research and other related endeavors. The writer make it quite clear he stands on this issue and makes a good convincing argument to persuade others. The first effort he makes to show readers that he is giving an un biased opinion is to state that his wife has died of cancer and that he still doesn’t support the use of this bond proposal. This insight into his life instantly give some reader pause to consider the validity of this proposal if someone affected by cancer believes that it’s a bad idea. He continues his assault against prop 15 by stating what most of us know, but always seem to over look, and that is the cost. Proposition 15 supporters have stated that the cost of 3 billion dollars over 10 year will be the price Texas tax payers will have to cover if this proposal goes into affect. What the writer states and supporters don’t know is that bonds earn interest. An investment into cancer research funded by a bond will still accumulate interest over the period of the bond. Bring the total cost to tax payers to 4.6 billion after interest is computed for ten years. A significant omission?

The main body of his argument, however, is why Texas? While it may be true that this influx of capital to the research market could increase the number of jobs for Texans, as well as support businesses. Why should Texans float the bill for research that the whole country would/will benefit from? The writer makes a great point in giving options that would help divided the burden to all 50 states through the use of federal level groups and agencies for the development of cancer science. Furthermore, a great point is made that private pharmaceutical companies will benefit greatly from tax payer paid research without having to spend a dime, and have the ability to further develop that research for profit. The last point the writer make is to state that there are no control measures in place to ensure how the money is spent, as the writer puts it “a 3 billion dollar blank check to be spent on something with the word cancer in it”, isn’t a great guarantee that it will be well spent.

Over all I believe the writer of this article did a fantastic job in not only organizing his arguments, but to convince the reader that his choice to vote no is based on more than his dislike of higher taxes.


1 comment:

JY3 said...

While Mr. Trowbridge does make a compelling argument against Prop. 15, I think there exist some arguments against his logic. While big Pharmaceuticals definitely have the cash behind them to do the kind of vast expanding research that returns real results, but the staggering historical profits by them don't necessarily offset the reality that not all of their money is purely dedicated to research towards the ultimate end of genuine healthcare. It's difficult to operate in that mindset coming from such a cut throat environment that a capitalistic based health care system can foster. Economics aside there's also the unprecedented exchange of influence between both the White House and big corporations. The White House has pandered o the right to get where it was and part of that means supporting initiatives such as preventing funding for many stem cell based research projects. Bush has made it clear that he will veto any such attempts to provide government money to such projects. In turn big pharmaceuticals, in this country at least aren't pursuing anything more that alternate ways of obtaining the precious stem cells.
This is an effort in Texas to perhaps spur something greater in the absence of a the Federal Government's attempts and should be considered beyond just the money going into it but also the return to the greater whole.