How much profit is in a baby liver?
A few years ago Your Business Professor was needling his tax accountant. I asked him, “What will you do when everyone uses software to do taxes?” He says, “My business is growing and will continue—“
“But the numbers; the taxable income—the profit is easy to figure…”
He smiles, “But what is “profit?”
So the debate on the profitability of organ donations caught my attention. Here’s the sell sheet,
— Chris Martin (@ChrisMartin17) July 17, 2015
In particular, 42 U.S.C. 289g-2(a) makes it unlawful for any person “to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce” (emphasis added).
The law defines “valuable consideration” to exclude “reasonable payments associated with the transportation, implantation, processing, preservation, quality control, or storage of human fetal tissue.”
But like my CPA said, the “valuable consideration,” the remainder of sales minus expenses is open to interpretation.
The question becomes, Is $24,250 a “reasonable payment” in the sale of a human organ? Planned Parenthood claims they are just covering their expenses. StemExpress has spoken by taking their website offline.
So let’s look at what their expenses might be. Please let me know on Twitter @JackYoest http://www.twitter.com/jackyoest if my estimate for each line item is correct and if I have the services correct.
We can re-calibrate and update with the wisdom of crowds in the TwitterVerse.
Cost of Goods Sold
Fifth month abortion 3,500
Lab (misc) 275
Company overhead (per transaction) 1,200
Sales Representative commission (10% of sale) 2,425
Tech courier 180
Ground transportation 75
Dry Ice (Cryopreserved) 20
Igloo container 40
Charter Helicopter (three hours) 4,500
Processing fee for investigators 150
RNA Quality Check 100
Tissue Macrodissection 40
Baby liver (tissue, issue one each) 24,250
I am using the complicated accounting formula: Sales – Expenses = Profit.
This higher, non-common-core, math gives us a real number: Eleven Large.
The Alert Reader will notice that I am combining the expenses for both #PlannedParenthood, which produces the goods for sale, and Stem Express, which is the channel of distribution (let’s not call them a middleman or rent–seeking parasite), to the end user.
The actual transportation/delivery costs might normally be done by a FedEx’er shipper. (Listed on the StemExpress website order form.) A bit cheaper than chartering a helicopter but I want to be underestimating and diplomatic to Dr. Frankenstein’s potential expenses at Planned Parenthood.
The #AlertStudent knows that in the formula these numbers are constants. But in normal business these forecasted numbers can have variation. Sales demand can go up or down and Expenses can go up or down. Profit is not guaranteed.
There is a chance that no profit could be made or that a company could lose money (I’ve done a lot of those…).
There is risk in business. Profit is the reward for managing this risk.
But would appear that there is little risk to deliver a liver. Stem Express gives Planned Parenthood a shopping list for the body parts needed and the abortionist can schedule a “donor” to fit the bill, so to say.
How much the “doctor” pressures the patient to “choose” abortion over life is not known. (Actually a pregnant women should be treated as two patients.)
Anyway, the abortionist will then modify the surgical procedure to extract the organ that was pre-ordered. There are no inventory carrying costs. There is minimal risk.
This is a nearly risk-free business and a very profitable business model.
But is it ethical or legal? Not likely. The profits seem to be far in excess above a break-even analysis. This can be determined in an independent audit.