Who Hijacked Our Country

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Workplace Drug Testing = Corporate Welfare for Hoffman-La Roche

Sometime during the 1980s — if not earlier — America’s anti-drug hysteria began turning into a lucrative industry.  The Drug & Alcohol Testing Industry Association (DATIA) is the trade association for the multi-billion-dollar drug testing industry.

Hoffman-La Roche — a DATIA member, needless to say — got this whole thing started in the mid 1980s.  By 1987, Hoffman-La Roche’s drug-testing labs were “earning” $300 million a year from the Pentagon.  The following year, Hoffman-La Roche launched a huge PR campaign to get corporate executives all fired up over the evil drug menace.  Their campaign was called “Corporate Initiatives for a Drug-Free Workplace.”

Hoffman-La Roche teamed up with a lawyer, David Evans, and together they organized workshops all over the country to convince employers to start drug-testing their workers.

By 2006, workplace drug-testing had reached its peak.  84% of American employers reported that they were testing their employees for drugs.  Since then, the percentage has been steadily decreasing.  More and more employers have decided either that the drug tests aren’t worth the expense and/or that the “problem” had been exaggerated.

After losing so many corporate clients, the drug testing industry had to search for new frontiers.  Voila!  In recent years there’s been a tsunami of new state laws requiring drug testing for everyone who applies for public assistance of any kind.

Coincidence?  Hoffman-La Roche is a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).  Birds of a feather.  And ALEC is the source of these boilerplate state laws requiring all public assistance applicants — including laid-off workers applying for unemployment benefits — to be drug-tested.

And here’s another gold mine for Hoffman-La Roche and other DATIA members:  School children.  Besinger, DuPont & Associates — another member of DATIA — has described schools as “potentially a much bigger market than the workplace.”

Invest your sons and daughters Now!

And that’s not all.  The recent trend of decriminalizing and even legalizing marijuana has produced an Astroturf “grassroots” backlash.  Three guesses where this manufactured “grassroots” backlash is coming from.  [see above]

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Blogger Randal Graves said...

Congress gets public assistance, so do generals and admirals and sailors and soldiers and IRS agents and pretzeldents.

April 10, 2013 at 11:53 AM  
Blogger jim marquis said...

Corporations are intent on making life really boring. No more cheeseburgers and no more bong hits. Boo!

April 10, 2013 at 5:05 PM  
Blogger okjimm said...

Good catch, Tom. But remember, Government does not create jobs....crooked politicians and lobbyists do.....

April 10, 2013 at 5:21 PM  
Blogger jadedj said...

Tom, what could be more Amurican than good ol' fashion paranoia...especially if it turns a profit for ya.

April 11, 2013 at 5:07 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Randal: Make 'em all pee in a cup.

Jim: Without cheeseburgers and bong hits, what have we got?

okjimm: That's right, government does not create jobs; it only kills them with those cumbersome job-killing regulations.

jadedj: Yup, paranoia for profit. It doesn't get any more Amurkin than that.

April 11, 2013 at 1:52 PM  
Blogger jadedj said...

Tom, if you haven't already seen it...this from http://crooksandliars.com/ today.

Texas Senate Unanimously Votes to Drug Test Welfare Applicants

April 11, 2013 at 3:35 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

jadedj: Thanks for the link. I didn't know about this. Those Texas legislators are all on welfare as far as I'm concerned; they should all have to pee in a cup.

April 11, 2013 at 6:51 PM  
Blogger Goodtime Charlie said...

Today I had to take a drug test for the first time in my life, as required by a client I'm managing a project for. I've always thought employee drug testing is stupid and an invasion of privacy; if what you do on your own time affects your job performance, that problem will resolve itself in other ways. Maybe it's reasonable to want to know if an airline pilot or surgeon or other employee who holds the lives of others in his hands has a raging cocaine habit. As for me, nobody will die if I turn in my progress reports late, they'll just fire me and get someone else. At any rate, I found it ironic that the client who demanded a drug test is in… Colorado.

April 12, 2013 at 6:38 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Charlie: Colorado, that's pretty ironic. I guess some Colorado residents are less progressive than the majority of the state's voters.

The only drug test I remember ever taking was when I was in the Navy a looong time ago. Presumably I passed it since I never heard anything about it afterward. I was smoking a lot of pot in those days, so the drug test must have been administered long enough after my most recent joint, by sheer luck.

April 12, 2013 at 8:13 PM  

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