Thursday, October 31, 2013

It's time to scrap the Affordable Care Act and start over

The Empire Strikes Blecch

Posted by Chris Haire on Thu, Oct 31, 2013 at 2:45 PM

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The Beatles or the Stones?

Coke or Pepsi?

Mary Ann or Ginger?

Biscuits or bagels?

Bong hits or beer bongs?

These are just a few of the questions that aren't worth discussing because the answer is so obvious. Why debate something that everyone already knows the answer to.

And you can add one more to the list: "The Empire Strikes Back" or "Star Wars"?

Everybody knows that the first sequel in the Star Wars saga is the better of the two films, and both are leagues better than the clap-drip that followed. But did you know that the movie that so many of us know and love almost didn't happen. In fact, if the original script had been shot, "The Empire Strikes Back" just might have gone down as one of the worst flicks in cinematic history.

In the original draft, there were no AT-ATs.

No Yoda.

No Boba Fett.

No in Han carbonite.

No severed hand.

No "I am your father."

In fact, pretty much everything that makes "Empire" a masterpiece of popcorn movie making was simply not there.

Instead, the screenwriter penned a dinner party scene between Darth Vader, Han Solo, and Princess Leia in which our favorite intergalactic smuggler gets hammered and another scene where Luke Skywalker is "knighted" by the ghosts of his dead father, Obi Wan Kenobi, and some Jedi bastard named Minch or Munch, I just can't remember. Both are pretty stupid names.

And the whole thing ends with Han Solo running off to convince his stepdad to join the Rebel Alliance like a petulant child. Oh ...  and Superman shows up with Lex Luthor's gay robot butler and fights a giant mechanical spider that somehow escapes the Man of Steel's clutches and ends up fighting Will Smith in the Wild West just as Rambo blows out his brains and Richard Gere leaves his hooker with a heart of gold on a street corner to floss her teeth and polish her fuck-me pumps with bum spit.

Fortunately, George Lucas rewrote that monstrosity.

Which is exactly what President Barack Obama should do to the Affordable Care Act. While there are some good things about the law — pre-existing conditions are now covered — they're few others. But the law's failings, well, they are legion.

Now we have learned that the Affordable Care Act is forcing insurance companies to drop what could potentially be millions of customers. These are the very same customers that President Obama insisted would continue to be covered under the new law. These are the very same customers that were reportedly grandfathered in by the Affordable Care Act. These are the very same customers who the bill's authors screwed over when they carefully crafted language in the law that nullified the previous grandfathering. 

Then there's the ongoing Healthcare.gov disaster. It's embarrassing and shameful and a opportunity for previously unheralded levels of laugh-induced schadenfreude pants pissing by the members of the Republican Party, the late-night talkgentsia, and the paint-huffer the po-po found passed out in a pool of puke at the corner of Crack Town and Krokodil Court. 

However, what's even more embarrassing is the fact that the Obama Administration thought that the best way to reach poor, uninsured Americans was to put up a website, one which many of these poor, uninsured Americans can't access since they don't have the spare $40-$50 bucks a month to pay for high-speed internet access. Talk about failing to understand your target demo.

But when it comes down to it, Obamacare's biggest problem is that it has now become the single biggest impediment to what so many Americans want: Canada's brand of universal healthcare. Up in that utopian wonderland, the government offers the kind of healthcare that's so awesomely awesome that people beg their sick coworkers to sneeze into their faces just so they can get sick. They smoke two packs a day for decades in order to get the unbelievable opportunity to undergo no-cost chemotherapy. And they pay back-page pro-hos and boy-toys to give them a little something-something HIV just so they can get a subscription for medical marijuana and lose a few pounds here and there. That's what we want, and we want it now.

Unfortunately, we're never going to get that — not now, not tomorrow, not ever — at least as long the Affordable Care Act is around. It's a constant reminder that government healthcare is a bad, bad idea. But it doesn't need to be that way.

Which is why President Obama must ask Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Like the original draft to "The Empire Strikes Back," it stinks worse than bantha fodder, tauntaun innards, and the Emperor's neck cheese combined. It needs to be scrapped. And once the death panels have sent it on a one-way trip to the Sarlacc Pit, we can start over, and a new hope will be born: healthcare for all.

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