The Shoechucker: Phuck Pharma

Choada Salinas, Columnist

No one’s rights are threatened, no one’s freedom is threatened, no one’s trying to control the people. What this administration finally succeeded in doing is enact a plan for health care 100 years in the making and significantly less comprehensive than previous plans.

This is what really seems to be happening here: Health care reform threatens several parasitic corporate interests, not the least of which is the PhRMA lobby. PhRMA funds media outlets (how many dick-hardening pill or K-Y Intense or Zoloft advertisements did you see today?), those media outlets then run headline news stories calling Obama a socialist — bullshit like

“Chairman Maobama Shares Double-Headed Dong With Stalin’s Ghost” (which, even if it were true, has absolutely no bearing on the argument at hand. It’s called a red herring fallacy; look it up). Then a bunch of morons get riled up and reveal their ignorant stupidity by yelling personal epithets worthy of an Eminem album at elected representatives in an attempt to show that their opinions are those of every American and that somehow the government is trying to interfere with their lives when the facts are completely the opposite. They even go so far as to create an “AstroTurf” (manufactured to appear like a “grassroots”) movement that is so separated from reality that they set themselves up to be called “teabaggers.”

It is a rhetorical maneuver invented by Lenin (yes, that Lenin) and appropriated by the wrong-wing that serves only to benefit entrenched interests at the expense of the people. In an attempt to help unmask this discourse of power, Antonio Gramsci gave us the idea of hegemony. People like Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh run their offense based on Gramsci’s defense. If people can be misdirected into mistaking their own interests for the dominant ones, then they won’t challenge anything … not too much, anyway. This doesn’t mean that they, or anyone else, are sitting somewhere conspiring. It does mean that, taken as a whole, interests tend to maintain themselves and whatever structures are there to support them at the time for as long as they can. It would be stupid to think otherwise.

That is why the medical and pharmaceutical industries have managed to resist the control that they have desperately required for a century. We’re talking about an industry that introduced heroin as a cure for opium’. They’re as clever as they are opportunistic. The health care plans of Roosevelt, Truman, Nixon and Clinton all had more teeth than Obama’s somewhat-pathetic pandering. The only thing that’s been rammed down anyone’s throat is the most expensive medical bill on the planet for some of the worst care accessible to the general public and the widest disparity between the good and average (generously omitting the bad) care.

One of the problems is that people are drawn to the information that supports their preconceived notions. Fans of Sarah Palin (the harpy whose greatest contribution to American discourse was coining the phrase “death panels” on her pHucking pHacebook page, of all places) are generally drawn to pHox “News” because it presents their side of the argument. Public broadcasting is actually the place to look for fair and balanced information. Here’s a rhetorical turn for you,public broadcasting — PBS and NPR, the only two significant and real public outlets (that guy jacking off into a pink bunny slipper on your local cable access channel doesn’t count) are continually characterized by these twits as being un-American, yet the government subsidizes them — they rely on it, as well as the people, the citizens, who contribute. There is nothing more American than public broadcasting, except maybe deep- fried butter on a stick.

There never were and never will be “death panels” anything like what Palin suggested under anyone’s health care legislation. The sheer absurdity of the phrase should reveal its underlying falsity. I guess some folks just aren’t bright enough to see through it. Come to think of it, I’m not sure I want those people to have health care; sooner or later they might all succumb to potentially fatal four-wheeling, human catapult, backyard wrestling and trampoline accidents. But like ramming things down people’s throats, “death panels” makes a great soundbite. Like a carnival game, it’s the kind of trick that gets them every time. The house always wins — otherwise it wouldn’t be there.

There never were and never will be “death panels” anything like what Palin suggested under anyone’s health care legislation. The sheer absurdity of the phrase should reveal its underlying falsity. I guess some folks just aren’t bright enough to see through it. Come to think of it, I’m not sure I want those people to have health care; sooner or later they might all succumb to potentially fatal four-wheeling, human catapult, backyard wrestling and trampoline accidents. But like ramming things down people’s throats, “death panels” makes a great soundbite. Like a carnival game, it’s the kind of trick that gets them every time. The house always wins — otherwise it wouldn’t be there.

The Shoechucker is not smarter than you are — but he might think more.

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