David B.




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August 13, 2009

The Usefulness of Idiots


“Keep your government hands off of my Medicare!”


It could be a rallying cry for the millions of Glenn Beck and Hannity viewers, FreeRepublic readers, and other subnormal so-called citizens who, by dint of their sponge-like soaking up of right-wing propaganda, their latent paranoia and racism, and their predisposal towards being easily led, have found themselves waving little placards and screaming at dozens of health care reform meetings across the country.


Keep your government hands off of my Medicare! –  words bellowed by a bellicose bumpkin in a moment of anti-Obama fury, his puny mind aghast at the notion that his government might redirect some of its resources away from bombing innocent Iraqi civilians and toward actually helping his countrymen. Preventing or curing diseases, saving lives, mitigating suffering, caring for society’s unfortunate: How dare they.


Scream your rage, citizen: Keep your government hands off my Medicare.


It doesn’t matter if its sane. It doesn’t matter if it makes no sense. It doesn’t matter if it works directly against your own best interests. If Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh or one of the other flag-draped corporatist shills tells you to think it, say it, or disruptively, publicly scream it in order to derail an initiative designed to better the lives of your neighbors, your friends, your family and yourself, you’ll do just as they say.


You’ll march in in lockstep alongside your fellow androids down to the public library or city hall to scream at your congressman, spray paint swastikas and do your damnedest to make sure that those evil liberals who are trying to make it possible for your mum to get that operation and your dad to afford his prescriptions are shouted down at every turn, squelching others’ free speech in the name of “freedom.”


It’s almost tempting to let the screamers have their way: Fine, no health care reform. We’ll let things go along just as they are now. Forget the whole idea, and trust BCBS, Cigna and company, with their $8 billion in annual profits, to make decisions in their interest. After all, as the dullest knives in society’s drawer, it’s pretty much a given that they similarly stand opposed to such “socialistic” concepts as safe workplaces and highways, a toxin-free food supply and poison-free pharmaceuticals if it would require government hands to administer them. It’s pretty much a given that the social Darwinism they so loudly espouse will claim the lions’ share of them as its initial victims.


The rightful province of government, though, is the protection of its citizens, including the loudest and most obnoxious sheep in the stockyard. They might be useful idiots of the $1 trillion for-profit health care industry. They might be working, however unwittingly, toward their own destruction. They might stand diametrically opposed to every principle of social justice known to humankind, and in the name of patriotism, even to the freedom and flourishing of the nation they profess to love so much. But as with the black-helicopter-watching, UN-takeover conspiracy theorists in days of yore, they are dupes – rubes corralled into irrational, self-destructive belief systems by powerful interests that they don’t even know exist.


The health care conglomerates are spending an estimated $1.8 million dollars per day in their efforts to derail any meaningful modification of the dysfunctional health care system that might minutely threaten their revenue streams. Profiteering off of the inevitable ailments and miseries of 260 million people is big business, and those whose Hamptons mansions and luxury yachts are dependent upon this business will stoop to any level to secure their ill-gained fortunes – even if it means convincing millions of Fox-watching sheep to enthusiastically march toward their own slaughter whilst singing the praises of their herdsmen and bleating “Get your government hands off my Medicare!” in unison.


Simple human decency demands that they be stopped – whether the sheep appreciate it or not.


© 2009 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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