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John Howell Column

John Howell Sr.

Country’s debate for health care still raging on

This health care debate is never all encompassing. You can get folks together to rail about whether or not the government should provide a wider safety net for the uninsured or about the quality of the present U. S. system versus the Canadian system or some other system, or about this, that and the other on ad nauseum.

Then in another camp you can get folks together to talk about the tremendous aging population of baby boomers. We never thought we were going to get old in the first place. Nonetheless, when we arrived at sure symptoms we denied them for as long as we could. When we could deny them no longer we started demonstrably commiserating with each other in empathy. We still want those inevitable symptoms of aging that are cropping up with increasing frequency to be postponed indefinitely. We expect the medical profession to do that, damn the cost, because most of all we are scared of dying.

(Nurse’s joke: Why did they nail his coffin shut? To keep the doctor from giving him more chemo.)

Then there’s obesity epidemic. People of all ages from very young to old have suddenly blown up to look like something that needs to be held down by ropes in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Look around you. You may question the science behind global warming but there is no denying that this country’s population of obese people has reached the proportions of epidemic. Providing medical care for such a population is going to drive costs up exponentially. (That’s exponentially compared to the rate at which they have already been rising exponentially).

And everybody’s got a sacred cash cow at stake in all of this. The medical, pharmaceutical, insurance, hospital, food additive and taste manufacturing, restaurant, etc., etc., — all of these interests will spend billions because even more billions are at stake if their cow gets gored with reform.

These well-funded, powerful interests and the inevitable consequences of aging and obesity are now set on an unalterable collision course. The outcome can’t be pretty.

Which comes back to that fear of dying. Better get used to it.

And if your Cosmic Rationale does not include a provision that provides Deliverance from  the “the body of this death,” perhaps it should be reconsidered.