If you live long enough America treats you to the gold standard of go fuck yourself

Though this is an old man’s complaint, I never forget that the young have been severely, severely fucked by the previous generations. There are countless examples, but any one will do, really. Concerted action on slowing climate catastrophe, even if taken as late as the first Earth Day in June of 1970 (I went there on one of my first “dates”), would have prevented the steep precipice life on earth stands at now, in the gathering tide of regular, ever more destructive Acts of God, floods, famine, wild fires, drought, record cold, extinctions, earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, record heat, avalanches of ice and rock, the warming and desalinization of the oceans, rising sea level, poisoned water and all the rest of the apocalyptic changes.

The most extreme Christian fundamentalists may regard the end of life on earth philosophically, some rejoicing at the hastening of the Rapture, after the battle of Armageddon between the armies of God and Satan, the final defeat of Evil, raising of the faithful to heaven and the casting of everybody else into the eternal torments of hell. Oh, happy day! l’ve got nothing nice to say about such true believers, so let us say no more about those God-fearing proselytizers. I have to assume that most Christians, certainly the most Christlike among them, must weep when they consider the criminal stewardship of nature by man, to whom God gave dominion over all life and the sacred trust of protecting God’s miraculous creation, according to their beliefs.

The righteous of all nations, heaven-bound or otherwise, suffer the same earthly uninhabitability of our beautiful home planet. Greta Thunberg and people her age are 100% right to be furious at the blah, blah, blah of the powerful bullshit artists of the present, equivocating in a dozen languages about their inaction and worse, while gorging themselves on the profits of those lucrative industries that are wantonly destroying everything as they spread lies, darkness and a series of toxic rationales. Fuck them, seriously.

So not to take anything away from the horrors facing the young, who the most idealistic of us all put most of our faith in. The young have every right to be fucking mad as hell at their hedonistic, shallow, asshole forebears. The future is a huge burning bag of radioactive dog shit we are handing to the next generations. How unfair is that? In a just world, we’d have all been fined every penny we are hoarding to clean up the mess we made.

But we don’t live in a just world, boys and girls, and so if you live to be old enough, and go on the American Gold Standard of government subsidized health insurance, Medicare, at least, theoretically, you don’t have to worry about the cost of your health care, not as long as you can prepay the premium of about $600 several times a year, 80% of your medical worries, as far as what you will have to pay on top of that, are theoretically taken care of. The US Gold Standard that is a rallying cry of progressive Democrats “Medicare for All”. It is certainly the least a nation can do for its people, and I’m here to explain, as succinctly as I am able, why it is certainly the least.

It leaves the final decision on the care you receive in the hands of private corporations. It ensures the vast profits of several lucrative health related industries. The insurance it provides covers a generous 80% of regular medical expenses, or sometimes none. You have to work it out with the corporations that will, or won’t pay for, say, a vaccine.

So I made my reservation for pneumonia and a shingles vaccine online, both recommended for people my age. My Medicare insurance was accepted, I got a confirmation email from the pharmacy, my t-shirt sleeve was rolled up, my right deltoid swabbed with cool alcohol, the pharmacist held the syringe of Shingrex in her hand and told me that it might cost another $200 or more for the required second shot (I’d been told a few minutes earlier that $200 would cover both), she really couldn’t say, and the pneumonia vaccine was new and could be very expensive, the one they had was the new one, a one shot deal, my insurance didn’t cover it, but she thought that if I spoke to the pharmaceutical insurance corporation (Medicare Part D, I think, you have to buy it separately if you want pharmaceuticals as part of your medical treatment) they might pay for it at another pharmacy chain, in a different form perhaps.

My only move at that point, learning that these highly recommended shots might cost me hundreds of dollars, was to put my shirt on, make sure the $200 credit card charge was reversed, and get the fuck out of there.

I have to say, as much progress as I may have made when an individual acts like an asshole, corporations and psychopaths still have the power to ruin an entire day for me. The pharmacist informed me that she would have to throw away the shingles vaccine that she’d been ready to inject in my arm. Which makes perfect sense in fucking America, if the guy doesn’t want to pay for $500 or more so his American Gold Standard government/private insurance doesn’t have to pay, well fuck him, we’ll throw the fucking expensive shot away rather than administer it. Which makes perfect sense in a nation that throws away millions of its most vulnerable citizens on an hourly basis. Fucking nation of fucking shills.

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