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And the Moral of the Story?

I don't pretend to know all the answers, as to WHY healthcare became such a mess, but . . . it ain't rocket science to recognize a few contributing factors to the chaos: Once upon a time in the land of plenty, a kindly uncle let the doctor-children build their own house & make their own rules. And all the kids with stethoscope toys were gleeful, because they knew that, if you get to make the rules, you usually win the games. So a huge, fancy medical tree-house was built by all the doctor-kids, and they formed the very first tree-house secret club. They cleverly installed lots of tricky, sneaky parts to it that could hurt you. (in case some outsider tried to see what they were doing) These med-kids knew instinctively that hierarchies perform the ultimate function, which is to control everybody else at all costs. That includes beating the hell out of anybody who fails to feed the hierarchy-machine. By carving out their niche in the trees, the new club members could throw apples at any fool trying to challenge the upper echelon. It was totally cool. It wasn't long before the boys in the tree-house were kings of the world, and because they had all the apples, they were pretty well fed - fed to the point of gluttony. Hundreds of thousands of unnecessary surgeries; trampling all over the nurses who tended the garden below. They rained down pesticide to kill off the nuisances of midwifery, acupuncture, chelation, vitamins, alternative care, and other tiny clubs that had gathered in their own smaller trees, thinking they were important, too. The arboreal med-kids vowed to crush any threat to the kings (and the rare queen) of their fabulous tree-house. Trillions of dollars were scooped up, and the tree-house became a castle in the sky - wealth beyond measure for those few who ruled the roost. The source of those trillions? The minions who needed apples to survive. And the deepest of deep-pockets indeed? Why, big, tall, gangly Rip van Winkle, the sleeping, generous, not-too-smart "uncle insurance," napping just under the tree.

But one day the tall, gangly uncle woke up. and when he did, he grew very, very angry when he realized somebody had ransacked his pockets and taken his watch and wallet. He had trusted the kids in the tree to only borrow a few dollars for a tree-house. How - pray tell - could they have gotten so greedy during his nap? The answers were dumbfounding:

  • $37 billion a year wasted, on some strange thing called "medical errors." what did that mean?

  • $19,400 gone, from each surgical foreign body left inside people. Huh?

  • 2,142 doctors behind bars. (doctor-kids in prison? In America?)

  • 400,000 innocent patients dying who should be alive?

  • Doctors performing fake surgeries on the poor mentally impaired?

  • Private insurance companies bilked by false coding to the tune of billions?

  • Medicare insurance pillaged by more than 5,000 doctor-kids?

  • 3,500 hospitals investigated for health system crimes?

  • Doctors having sex with their patients & billing insurance for the "treatments?" Are you kidding me?

  • Doctor-kids hiding the bad doctor-kids so the grownups can't spank them?

  • Physicians sued 100 times, still allowed membership in the tree house?

  • Hospitals allowing a surgeon-kid with a lawsuit history to surgically implant a screwdriver into a poor patient's cervical spine?

  • Doctor-kids defending another doctor-kid who murdered his wife & buried her in a basement?

  • Doctor-kids allowed to slap, grope, molest, insult, badger & murder nurse-kids?

  • A New York doctor-kid blowing up a building to spite his wife?

Well, needless to say, uncle insurance got very, very angry. He got a big stick and he kicked & screamed & broke furniture & smashed all the windows in the tree-house. Lots of the doctor-kids got battered and bruised and started jumping out of the trees and running around crying. Some were ashamed, but others were defiant. They said they had a right to do whatever they wanted. They did write the rules, you know. But gee, look at all the apples falling out of the tree. And now the lawn's a big mess. How are we ever going to clean it up? Is there a moral to this story? Well, maybe. My dad said that maybe the moral is this:

NEVER let kids build a tree-house without adult supervision And I said to my dad, "Even a kid should know it's not too smart to steal money from a sleeping giant."

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