PHILADELPHIA: Activists Stage Tug-Of-War With “Pharma Bros” To Protest Hillary On HIV Meds [VIDEO]

Via press release from ACT UP:

Over the weekend, the New York and Philadelphia chapters of ACT UP, the AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power, teamed up with allies UAEM (Universities Allied for Essential Medicines) and The Other 98% to stage a tug-of-war with pharma bro’s outside Hillary
Clinton’s Philadelphia campaign headquarters ahead of the Democratic National Convention.

Activists targeted candidate Clinton for her refusal to renew her 2008 campaign pledges to regulate the price-gouging of medicines made by major pharmaceutical companies like Gilead and Pfizer. The high prices make it hard for people with HIV as well as other people to access the lifesaving treatment they need.

“Hillary Clinton made pledges to have 30 million on treatment by 2020. Many are sick, and some have died waiting for the treatment,” said ACT UP Philadelphia member Jose De Marco. “This is not the way to the AIDS Free Generation she talked about.”

Currently, taxpayers help fund the development of new medicines through grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to universities. The drugs are then licensed to companies to sell back to consumers at high prices. “Hillary Clinton must provide concrete solutions for pharmaceutical price-gouging and challenge the current patent system for drugs that Americans pay for with their taxes,” said Brandon Cuicchi of ACT UP NY.

Around thirty people met at the Love Statue in Philadelphia’s City Hall Park and marched, carrying signs and chanting, to Clinton’s campaign headquarters a few blocks away. When they arrived, they were met by a pharma bro played by comedian John F. O’Donnell from RT’s Redacted Tonight along with the bigheaded likenesses of other notable pharma bros like Martin Shkreli.

The pharma bros waved giant moneybags and challenged activists to a tug-of-war to win influence over Hillary Clinton. After much verbal and physical sparring, activists dropped the rope and sent the pharma bro’s falling to the ground in order to deliver their demands directly to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, but they were barred from entering the building by about 30 members of Philadelphia police on bicycles. There were no arrests.

  • 1Truth1

    Brace yourselves. It’s going to be a long week.

    • Blake Jordan

      With (unintended) goal of making hair fuhrer, and his puppet master putin, the next potus…

      • Lumpy Gaga

        The ringleader has a day job with RT. You’re not far off the mark.

  • Lumpy Gaga

    RT’s Redacted Tonight

    RT, RT…. hmmmm. I did teh Google.

    And yes, this is RT as in “Russia Today”.

    Which, if you’ve ever had the pleasure….

  • TK

    I just read an article that said there were over a hundred protests last week…I only saw about three mentioned while I was watching. Do you think the protests this week will get more media coverage? Especially because the theme is unity..

    • Blake Jordan

      Of course!

      We know the media has been largely ignoring all drumpf’s faults, but exaggerating and lying about Clinton’s for months now.

      • WebSlinger

        HELLO these are the facts…ignore Trump and demonize Clinton…

      • David Milley

        … years now.

        • Ernest Endevor

          Decades.

    • No – HRC and her team will be able to squash coverage.

      • Dramphooey

        Don’t worry. I’m sure the Fart-In will get a lot of positive attention for True Progressives &copy. Send beans and dildos!

        • It’s interesting how we get labled true progressives as a joke, when we’re trying to bring the most centrist president ever just a teeny bit more to the left.

        • Joseph Miceli

          I remember when being a Dem meant you were a Progressive. I’m so sad Dems have lost their soul.

          • Dramphooey

            Will you be attending the Fart-In?

          • Joseph Miceli

            No, will you be eating human shit off of a platter?
            And yes, I find your statement exactly as offensive as the one you just made. You actually replied to my bemoaning the lack of Progressive standards with a character assassination.
            What made you such a horrible person?

          • DaveW

            Just for balance I will say it’s good we have a viable centrist party. They can win this way

            Many of us lament the GOP becoming christianist and racist/bigoted and borrow and spend. I don’t expect to get agreement but offering a counterpoint, their strategy will work if any can more progressive can’t win here (and maybe shouldn’t)

          • Joseph Miceli

            I don’t agree. The right becomes more right and in reaction we…become more right.
            I think a true Progressive platform will work, but most are too afraid to even consider it.

      • Capritaur

        Look who decided to crawl out of his hole just in time for DNC. Not a troll indeed.

      • bcarter3

        Because HRC controls all the media. That’s why you never ever ever hear anything bad about the Clintons.

        This kind of nonsense is typical of the mindset of some of the “progressives” who plan to vote Green. They’re well-intentioned, but they have no concept of the realities of politics and the world outside of their tiny little circle.

    • ca

      If it’s a boring convention, they’ll get bigger ratings and more readers covering the protests but it could go either way really. It’s all about what will bring in viewers. The RNC show was crazy enough to keep everyone paying attention so the mostly uneventful protests weren’t significant enough news for the media.

  • Blake Jordan

    Let me guess, while the democrats actually discuss policies, etcetera inside, most of the media focus will be on the protesting BS (pun intended) outside… thus having the majority of viewers not realize how put together the Democratic Party is in a general, especially compared to the RNC cluster-fuck, and how much better they will be for the country…

    • DaveW

      Americans want their bread and circus, not substance. Sad.

  • Treant

    I see. So Trump will do a much better job at this than Clinton.

    Yeah, I see.

    • Blake Jordan

      Apparently the candidate has to be a perfect liberal (which Sanders isn’t even) for them to support, or they will take an action that will let the exact opposite win.

      The laughable thing is, Stein is not great alternative either, it is just that her faults have not been explored publicly much!!!

      • Treant

        She had me at “anti-vaccination” and “holistic medicine.” At that point, I parked her firmly in the “Yahoo” corner.

        At this point, my temper is frayed as far as the purity crew is concerned. They would have turned on Bernie as soon as he pivoted for the generals, I’m not inclined to put up with their shit.

        • Blake Jordan

          She is not anti-vaccination, she just believes that none of them should be mandatory, and therefore parents can choose if they want to protect their children from preventable illnesses.

          Those children should then just be barred from interacting with other children, or even adults, to avoid the possibilities of a vaccination immune strain developing…

          • Treant

            I consider that anti-vax, actually, which may not be technically correct.

            I have a cousin who used to be anti-vax until she handed me the baby and didn’t tell me that. I’m a rubella carrier, which is not at all uncommon (most of us are carriers for one or more diseases, generally fairly minor).

          • SoCalVet

            not requiring vaccines is the same as being anti-vaccination, in effect. I make no distinction.

  • Gene

    ACT UP has always done more harm than good (and patted themselves on the back for doing so).

    Seems they are still at it.

    where were they LAST week?

    FUCKTARDS

    • Todd20036

      You haven’t been alive back in the 1980s when Act Up was the ONLY advocate for AIDS patients.

      • Lumpy Gaga

        The Act Up of the 1980s would have had the guts to show up at the RNC; and wouldn’t have had a Putin puppet as ringleader.

        (P.S. The Beatles broke up.)

        • Todd20036

          Agreed, but Gene did say “always”

      • Lumpy Gaga

        AUINO (Act Up in Name Only)

      • Gene

        In the late 80s (almost 50 here!) I was already volunteering at an AIDS hospice Todd, and delivering meals. funding was low. The organizers of the hospice told me how they, and several other AIDS related charities lost a LOTTTTT of funding after the 1989 “protest” at St. Patricks in NYC. a LOT of funding. it was bad.
        Well intentioned? yes. justifiable anger? yes. is all publicity good publicity? no. GMHC, founded by Kramer, but no longer doing exactly what he said, had been around for years before ACT UP by the way, and was doing good work.. in any case, I understand the anger. I just saw how it ended up hurting the cause as I was told over and over and over and over by people from KY to Oh to VA to GA how that protest offended them and turned them off. Its on that personal, and $$$ experience of the effects of ACT UP that I base my statement

        • Gene

          (and in any case…again…WHERE were they in Cleveland? if they were there, I heard/saw/read nothing of them)

    • canoebum

      Sometimes it takes the loud sounds of extreme voices to get other people talking. ACT UP was instrumental in bringing much needed attention to the appalling situation of government inaction in the face of a pandemic killing millions. Learn some history. When was the last time you risked getting your head broken or going to jail, or both, for the cause of helping vulnerable people?

      • Christopher Smith

        He knows plenty of history, as he has shown. It is you who reveal your appalling ignorance of basic facts in posts such as this one. ACT UP was *not* instrumental in anything except the few years during Raygun when AIDS was a four letter word unsayable in public. It’s been downhill ever since for ACT UP, which now is one of the leading exemplars of gays devouring their own and doing nothing to stand against the tide of protofascism that is now amurrikkka. When was the last time you made a less than sanctimonious, self-aggrandizing post, or put aside your tired little drama queen attempts at condescension?

        • canoebum

          Well, I guess the people dying those early years with few to fight for them except people like ACT UP were just unworthy of your consideration. So what ACT UP did then was of no value, because later things fell apart. As to your personal attacks on me, for which I see no justification based on what I wrote, kindly go fuck yourself with a wire brush.

          • Christopher Smith

            Of course you see no justification–in your delusional little world you’re always right. As to your personal attacks on others, which have less than no justification and which you regularly perpetrate, kindly fuck yourself hard with a rusty chain saw.
            Gosh, the new block feature was just made for posters like you. 😀

  • TexasBoy

    Yeah, I’ve got a hippie (yes, lives in a stereotypical commune) college drop-out cousin going to Philly to demonstrate “non-violent communication techniques.” I’m like, wouldn’t it have been better to deliver that message at the Rethuglican convention….according to her, they were afraid it would end in violence, so they picked the DNC. She’s also a Bernie supporter who is not going to vote for Hillary….go figure.

    • Lumpy Gaga

      according to her, they were afraid it would end in violence, so they picked the DNC.

      Bullies never pick on people who can fight back.

    • Gene

      I have cut all ties, permenantly, with the two relatives who have told me as much. Ill be polite to them at funerals, but, thats it.

      Life is to short to spend it with stupid people.
      you should do the same. this cousin of yours is obviously not someone worth knowing/spending time with.

      • TexasBoy

        I don’t spend time with her. It’s sad, she was a nice kid growing up. Now were in contact through Facebook only.

        • Gene

          ah…got it.
          as per facebook, this is my only presence on line. anywhere. A friend let me look at a couple of cousins facebook accounts, which it seems lists your “likes” on the bottom. When I read the words “haggee” “mefferd” “Trump” “W” and “NRA” in one sentence, I dont care if we share a grandmother, we aint gonna be in touch! lol (even at the facebook level, were I ON it, I mean)

      • Todd20036

        You should be VERY polite with them at their own funerals. Maybe even have a dance party… at the grave site.

        • Treant

          I have one relative where I’ll make snarky remarks at the funeral.

          • SoCalVet

            those who live longer get to write the history. 🙂

        • Bj Lincoln

          I don’t really know my cousins. We only saw each other once a year at christmas when we were kids. They had money so they got all the cool gifts and stuff while we were not very well off. The last time I saw them was 25 or 30 years ago when Grandma died. Then it was a polite nod as if they were complete strangers.

    • Dramphooey

      So they want to disrupt the system but they’re too afraid to actually disrupt the system. They’re going to make trouble where they’ll be tolerated. That is unbelievably pathetic. I’ll tell you what it actually is. Bundy Malheur II: the Return of the Cosplay Revolutionaries. This is serious shit and these people want to play pretend counterculture. Fuck them!

      • Lumpy Gaga

        Better yet, send dildoes.

    • Blake Jordan

      Are you cousins straight?

      • TexasBoy

        Yes.

        • Blake Jordan

          I feel confident in saying that >90% of these “bernie or bust” types are straight, white, cisgender people…
          Because when drumpf wins, they will suffer the least…

          • SoCalVet

            I know two of them…one is straight and one is gay. I have one that will vote for Hillary but talks bad about her every chance he gets. It’s the cool thing to do now days.

          • Acronym Jim

            That’s like saying, when the Great Old Ones return, at least they’ll be eaten first.

    • Ray Butlers

      The cliches write themselves

      • TexasBoy

        My family is the embodiment of the cliché. I grew up in the greater Los Angeles area, when we moved to Texas, I’m like, are you sure we’re related to these people? The commune has no electricity, no running water. They bathe in a creek, and beg for money through crowd funding sites for their travel expenses to “educate” the population.

    • Bj Lincoln

      I have a problem with parents who bail their kids out. If the kids can always depend on them to bail them out then why would they ever grow up and take responsibility for themselves? One of our ‘adopted’ sons has 2 sisters who are both a waste of skin. They are horrible parents and don’t have custody most of their children, are always broke and often homeless yet our son and his parents have been bailing them out all their lives.

  • Dramphooey

    I’m worried about ugly protests and disruptions. I have no problem with street theater promoting an issue that is liable to fall between the cracks.

    However, the bottom line is if Trump wins issues like this will be in nobody’s mind. One doesn’t worry about the stables burning if the house is on fire.

  • Blake Jordan

    538 update, Ohio and Florida now leaning drumpf:

    • Lumpy Gaga

      That’s precisely the formula that Korndracki (sp?) on MSNBC played out on his magic wall on Maddow’s show last week to show Drumpf taking America.

    • Gustav2

      That’s funny since less than three-quarters of RNC delegates from Ohio believe he will win in November.

      • Karl Dubhe

        If you ask a bunch of salesmen if they’re going to sell… 🙂

        • Gustav2

          And when your sales force is not motivated…

          from the same article:
          “46 percent are not enthused that Trump is the nominee, 85 percent do not view him as the party’s best possible candidate”

          • Karl Dubhe

            I hope they stay depressed.

    • Blake Jordan

      Missed this, even worse:

      • Dramphooey

        What is this one?

        • Blake Jordan

          This one is the “now cast”, while the first one is “poll plus”…

          • Dramphooey

            Well ………………………………………. the Now Cast sucks.

        • SoCalGal20

          That’s the Now-cast. Pills-plus still has Hillary with a big lead.

      • Treant

        New Hampshire and Pennsylvania? I. Doubt. That.

        • Dramphooey

          For what it’s worth: Pat Toomey, our Senator here in PA up for election, skipped the convention in Cleveland.

          • Treant

            Yep, the bastard fuckwad is my Senator too. He’s trying to save his ass from McGinty, and unfortunately it looks like that has a chance of happening.

          • BrienneOfTarthCarolWalkingDead

            I have to say this with the caveat that I despise Toomey for his anti-choice, anti-LGBT and overall smugness, but McGinty is a poor candidate. This is what we get allowing that douchebag Ed Rendell to keep running PA Dems. I have met her, spent time with her, she is dumb, can only respond with talking points and fake as all hell.

          • Treant

            I agree. I voted for her only because I wasn’t too thrilled with Sestak, either. He’d already run for that seat and lost it.

          • BrienneOfTarthCarolWalkingDead

            You know she ticks all the right boxes, from Philly blue collar, woman, some experience but she is rife with corruption of the PA Dems. Fracking is a huge issue for me and she is right in line with the NG companies. There is no good candidate.

    • Dramphooey

      But it still has Clinton winning and that’s after a Convention bounce.

  • Texndoc

    Looking at that photo reminds me that Martin Shkrelli (or whatever that turd’s name is) has the Milo Twitter ban sads. Of course they’re tight.

  • Mark

    just before i woke up this morning – i was having this fucked up dream that every man, woman, and child across the country was holding a screaming sparkler. The sparklers were quite loud and very bright – and they would burn for days on end. (It was a repug plot to drown out the DNC?) But the oddity was that most just stood there with their sparkler burning loudly and brightly – and with absolutely no idea why they were doing it…..as if some magical evil force had taken over – but they did it all the same.

    Then I woke up to find it wasn’t necessarily untrue….

  • Jerry Hinnant

    Some people just have way too much free time on their hands. Maybe if they spent as much time and energy on looking for real solutions instead of this childish foolishness the problems would be solved by now.

  • Scott Fitler

    At this point I’m not even getting upset at the thought of protests or the booing of Wasserman at the gavel opening. The media is so fully committed to the entertainment value of a Trump presidency that if even only two people showed up with picket signs they would blow it up into “some unidentifiable expert says potential for unimaginable mayhem brewing at DNC! Is it finally over for Hillary? Trump says so!”

  • M Jackson

    I support Hillary Clinton today. I have always supported Act Up. Both for 25 years.
    Please find a way to come together, elect her president and bust big Pharm.

    • unsavedheathen

      Your last two objectives are mutually exclusive.

      • M Jackson

        Probably. But Larry Kramer’s not running.

    • JNK

      How is a shill for big pharma going to bust big pharma? LOL!

      • M Jackson

        Fingers crossed? Light a special candle?

  • SoCalGal20

    According to KNX the CA delegation breakfast was tense and every time a speaker mentioned Hillary’s name, Bernie delegates would stand and boo.

    • Treant

      Nice. How are they going to respond to being ejected for disrupting the proceedings?

      • SoCalVet

        I hope they do get ejected. This is the Democrat’s Convention, not the Democratic Socialists’.

  • oikos

    Demonstrate all you want but where were these protestors during the Cleveland Clown show?

    • There’s some hope of getting Clinton to listen. Trump? He only listens to the voices in his head.

      • JustSayin’

        This is NOT how you get someone to listen to your complaints and help you solve them

  • nycmcmike

    Oh come on. Surely it’s no big deal America is the only industrialized nation that doesn’t offer healthcare as a right. Who cares if getting sick can cause her citizens to go bankrupt?

  • SoCalVet

    I’m coming to really dislike the people that are trying to give this election to Trump.

  • Bill Post

    Thank gawd they weren’t black, then it would have been a riot with arrests (snarketty snark snark)

  • Bj Lincoln

    When will we hear from Nate Silver?

  • JNK

    Hillary might have had some.integrity once upon a time. But she has long ago sold her soul for Wall Street cash. She is a corporatist shill, plain and simple.
    The Clinton did not.invent anything so what did they sell to become so filthy rich? It is like those leaders in a banana republic.

    • Bob Conti

      Yes, but she’s OUR corporatist shill.

  • bcarter3

    Ah, yes. Good old ACT-UP. Attack your real and potential allies, and ignore the people who want you dead.

    I must have missed their demonstration in Cleveland, when the intensely homophobic Mike Pence was nominated for VP.

  • JustSayin’

    They do not have the balls to face the real enemy of price controls, the republicans, so they attack the person on their side just to cause hate and destruction. Fucking whiners

  • Bad Tom

    If Trump wins, street theater protests could well become illegal.

  • DaveW

    Pharma Bros? Can our society be any more juvenile? This mentality gave us Trump, “hipsters” and bad comedy like the office or 3rd rock.

  • A Dopehead in a Cubs Cap

    Oh come on people. Has a rough primary left you so reactionary that you’re going to condemn ACT UP for doing what they do?

    For fuck’s sake, calm down. You’re forgetting yourselves.

  • Marti386

    Terrific. Hillary is for Pharma-bros now.

    This just keeps getting better and better. 0_o

  • Jean-Marc in Canada

    I have absolutely no problem with these people voicing their views, peacefully I hope; however, I do feel the need to ask: where were they during the GOP convention? Why weren’t they challenging Trump? I just find the selective outrage to be somewhat dubious.

  • Will Kohler

    As one of the few to live through the AIDS crisis of the 80’s the comments on this page against ACT UP are vile and disgusting and you should all be ashamed.

    • Marilyn Willett

      Did you really see J. Frid often at the David porn theatre, I’m not putting him down at all, I love that man,

  • Baby Dave

    I suppose you Clintonistas, including Joe who printed a false story about Bernie taking the stage to a homophobic rap song, will now attack Larry Kramer. ACT-UP is the only reason why many gay men of middle age are alive today.

    If it weren’t for these in your face protests, there would have been no AZT, no federal dollars for AIDS research, and your ass (I mean YOUR ass, Joe) would be fucking dead.

    So come on, you Clinton assholes. Tell me once more how worried you are that protests are going to disrupt things. If we hadn’t disrupted things 30 years ago, you wouldn’t be here to type your bullshit posts.