"I don't think taxpayer money should be invested in large Phase III trials (which can cost almost $1 billion) when they have a pretty low chance of succeeding. Moreover, you really do need teams of people to be competitive in today's research world - I work in a lab in academia, and there's no way you could do much drug development all by yourself."
Which is why Pharma companies are all bankrupt? No part of what I proposed involved taxpayer money or prevented working in teams. What I proposed are loans from the federal reserve on the same terms they are given to banks. The fed does not loan out tax payer money to banks, it loans out shiny newly created money at ridiculously low rates. We have an inflationary fiat currency and it actually depends on us putting new currency into circulation. Traditionally the finance industry gets all the benefits from this system. Advanced technology and especially medicine is certainly at least one obvious alternative place we could inject this money which benefits everyone in the nation.
"You absolutely shouldn't be allowed to make something that's going to go into people in a lab like you described"
I didn't actually describe a lab. Maybe you are mentally projecting your own assumption of some sort of inferior facility? Last I checked there is nothing magical about the pharma corps that makes them more capable than anyone else.
"I'm also not sure what you have against profits in general. For-profit companies aren't inherently bad, and non-profits aren't inherently good."
In general I agree. I just don't think healthcare and medicine is an appropriate for-profit industry. The costs are the same whether for-profit or non-profit. Profit has to come from somewhere and in the case of healthcare the result is higher costs which means less people benefit from the care. A for profit has an interest in maximizing profit and you maximize profit by providing as little as possible for as much as possible. This isn't in the interest of our nation. We all benefit if the health industries provide as much as possible at the lowest cost possible.
I don't propose blocking the for profit drug industry. I propose they shouldn't be allowed to use infrastructure that exists to provide an alternative to them and tie up those resources just to increase their own profits. Non-profits and partnerships still allow for teams to group together in a more established structure and work and allow for those people to profit from that work in the form of salaries in the case of a non-profit and in the system I proposed all the net profit derived from the fruits of their labor.