Government Compensation

In the early 1980's many of the pharmaceutical companies had indicated they would cease manufacturing DPT vaccines because of the overwhelming number of lawsuits filed against them for wrongful death and personal injury. In 1986 the Federal Government stepped in and set up a program called the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. This program awarded monetary settlements to families whose children had died as a result of vaccination and to those whose vaccine damaged children had lived to spend their lives as handicapped. They in effect assumed the liability of the drug manufacturers in order to maintain the status quo of mass vaccination. This is like allowing General Motors to manufacture cars with defective seat belts and buying off the injured parties so as to not alter the status quo profit structure.

Isn't there something inherently wrong when the government steps in and assumes liability for a private entity? Is this capitalism or socialism? Since the first monetary award in 1990 the VICP has paid out over 500 million dollars of taxpayers' money to families of vaccine damaged children. Would it not be better for the government to fund research instead?

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