Yesterday I was talking with friends of a weird situation near my home: there are 3 pharmacies in the same building and 3 others very close by. Well, pharmacies and banks have the same business model, if you think about it, so no wonder there. What felt a bit strange is that in the building there was the pharmacy that I have been buying medicine from my youth and recently it was bought by one of the larger pharmaceutical chains and converted into a flashy, colorful and very expensive venture. The same happened to a company called Plafar, a Romanian company opened in 1999 with state capital which specialized in natural remedies, infusions and so on. In 2007 it was purchased by a pharmaceutical chain that loses its origin in the vagaries of stock exchange. Now all they sell is terribly expensive as well.
So yes, I think that is strange as seen from the naive view of free market in capitalism. You have a competitive segment of the market, providing no bullshit service at low price, being bought and replaced by the people that gain at least half of their money by overpricing. It's like a virus (A virus enters a bar. The bartender says "We don't serve viruses in here". The virus replaces the bartender with a copy of its own and says "Now you do") and it spreads especially fast in a low immunity environment like a freshly "liberated" country like Romania.
What is going on here? Well, since we are in the medical/pharmaceutical context, let's address the notion of economic health. At economics.about.com they say The value of stock market indices seem to be the barometer many use for the health of the economy.. Well, that is not what I had in mind. What I think is health in an economy is how fresh growth is not hindered, but nurtured. Just as in the human body, disease impedes growth and disables functioning mechanisms that are vital to life. Are other countries healthy? No! They are in the same kind of crap, only there it is harder to suffocate others.
Is there a solution? I don't know. But a full ecosystem is needed to promote health. When only predators remain, the land dies.