The breathtaking cost of prescription drugs is the epitome of money-grabbing, and a thoughtless financial squeeze on each of us directly or indirectly, perpetrated by the pharmaceutical industry.

Hiding behind the idea that prohibiting importation of stunningly less expensive drugs from Canada is protecting us from counterfeits is a classical lesson in phony propaganda.

The relief we enjoyed with the Maine Pharmacy Act, which controlled drug costs by allowing us to purchase medications from Canada and other approved nations, has been overturned by U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Torresen in Portland.

Translated, this means a victory for Big Pharma, achieved through intense lobbying in Washington and sweetened by campaign contributions to Congress.

But wait – let’s not sit back and allow them to celebrate this victory thinking we have surrendered unconditionally.

Let’s demand that Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King and Reps. Chellie Pingree and Bruce Poliquin stand up and be counted, without bobbing and weaving and without political mumbo-jumbo, in favor of the Maine Pharmacy Act. Let’s take heed that there are no “for sale” signs on our congressional members’ offices.

Then, after the drug companies have canceled their celebrations and called their legal beagles back from exotic vacationlands, let’s roll out Janet Mills, Maine’s attorney general, to do battle for us against Big Pharma.

Finally, let’s tell Gov. LePage that he’d be wise to stay out of this one.

Richard C. Dillihunt, M.D.

Portland