Truth or consequences

A new study has concluded that an average of 45,000 Americans die prematurely each year from a lack of health insurance coverage. Given that there are 45 million Americans who are uninsured (plus or minus illegal aliens… Congressman Joe Wilson wants you to know that it’s a.o.k. with him if they die in the streets like animals, even if not treating them results in infectious diseases spreading to, you know, White people… and other catastrophes, just so long as you-know-who continues to be screwed by the system)… that means it would take around 1,000 years to do God’s work and kill ’em all… fortunately, actuarial tables say it won’t take quite that long to clean out them uninsureds.
For point of comparsion, we should note that there are also two to three great white shark attacks on average each year in the US of A, most of those non-fatal, btw… but which do you think gets the prime coverage, not to mention the big-time hysteria when it’s reported? You get the idea.
Those likely to be attacked by sharks are probably hip, upscale good-looking people, surfing or doing some cool triathlon or something, who live in expensive beachfront property and are probably White and have good jobs and sh*t. Many of the prematurely dying uninsured are probably overweight and not very attractive and maybe live in unfashionable neighborhoods and well… we’d rather not think about them, if that’s o.k. (and lemme tell you: it’s o.k.)
And so we continue to make public policy based on sensible criteria like those above: the fact that we get a 9-11 size death toll every 24 days as a result of our mean-spirited refusal to either require the government to insure everyone (or at least all children, if nothing else) or at least to require every employer above a certain size to insure their workers might seem somewhat troubling. But doing something about that would cost hip, upscale people money, and that’s just not how we do things here in capitalist Amurka. WOLVERINES!
And it’s not how we’re going to do things, as those 45,000 people die to show everyone else the consequences of not buying in to the program… and the business of America is business, and we’re, as you can see, deadly serious about that.
And the best part (IMHO) is that Medicare recipients, the old-geezer beneficiaries of socialized medicine paid for in large part by uninsured workers (and quite frequently not paid for by the geezer-beneficiaries themselves) are a natural constituency for the status quo, joining over vested interests like big pharma and big insurance. It is frequently older people who are often the biggest loud-mouths themselves when it comes opposing expansion of either their own program (and many even scream about “Obama that damned socialist!) or any other to expand health coverage. And politicians listen, because the geezer-class punches above its weight in voter turnout. And so, the geezer-class often opposes expansion of health care to the uninsured, even though its members benefit from the Medicare program which is of no current benefit to the sub-65 workers who are actually paying for it, figuring that in a world of scarce resources, we might start making actual rational decisions, like, oh, taking a look at outrageously expensive coverage at public expense for them
But since we don’t do anything else rationally or justly or even remotely fairly… I wouldn’t worry too much if I were a Medicare bonus-geezer. It’s hard to see why we shouldn’t just keep letting 45,000 Americans a year needlessly die from lack of insurance (most of whom, let’s face it, are probably fat and poor and not very attractive as it is), because, well, f*ck ’em.
This has been… “truth or consequences.”