Bob Franken

August with Health Care Reform: Hazardous to Your Health



“This is an Action, Eyewitness News Weather Alert!! Our town is going to be clobbered by an August Blizzard.”

You might not hear anything like this from Eye Nitwit News, but you should. Consider this a warning. Wall-to-wall TV ads will completely take over the airways, cables and satellites, whatever channel you watch. These health care commercials will definitely be hazardous to your health and will reverse any progress you had made toward understanding the fragments of reform that members of Congress had created, before they flew the Capitol for their month-long recess.

Just about every special interest group with deep pockets will be spreading the wealth just a bit with television stations that could care less whether the commercials are distortions, as long as they can pull in the full rate.

And they will be distortions. Sadly, the legislation is really just in skeletal form at this point, but the cleverly produced commercial can pick whatever meat there is on those bones and throw it out to be chewed up by the predators who have everything to gain from the Darwinian status quo.

The Senators and Congressmen and women who make the big mistake of going back with the homefolks will get clobbered at each and every town meeting they hold. They’ll play to big crowds—as many people as the insurance companies, doctors, lawyers,, etc, can recruit to pack the house.

That way, they can drown out the honest questions that might come from constituents who are understandbly confused as they try and grasp the complexities of the measures that are slowly going through the DC grinder.

Maybe the entire nation should shut down in August, like civilized countries do. Of course many of them have a single-payer health system so we don’t want to follow their leads—even though their citizens are quite happy with their setups.

This is the U-S-of-A. We need to do things our way. That means we have to create “reform” that still allows the rich to get richer. If that means throwing a few crumbs at the millions who are insurance have-nots, so be it. In any case, they’ll start reworking things after September, after the politicians return to Washington, and try to pick up the pieces.

That’s when the real work will be done, and it won’t be on television. The deals will be worked out in the backrooms of the White House and the Capitol. At some point, the negotiators will agree they’ve come up with something they can present as change we can believe in, and they’ll hold some sort of Rose Garden signing ceremony. Then they’ll declare victory and return home for Christmas.

Just in time for all the holiday ads.

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