Democratic Underground

Postcards from the Edge of the Health Care Debate
September 6, 2001
by Olaf the White

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"Ow! My neck!" I said to my girlfriend over the phone. "It's twitching, and I can't control it." I groaned and then, thank God, I collapsed and took a small table out with the small of my back. If not for that crash I don't know how long it would have taken to find me. As it was the crash was loud enough to alert my mother to the fact that something had happened.

Within an hour my room was filled with EMTs calling my name, "Olaf, what's your name Olaf?" Even with a hint I don't know if I got it right. One EMT said, "His mother said bi-polar", and proceeded to ask, "Who's the President Olaf?"

The first "moral of the story" is coming up. As the story unfolds hopefully you will come to understand why I need to explain the morals of the story so quickly. Living with a life threatening condition will drive you to seek morals to the story as you go. In the ambulance I asked what my answer to the "President question" was. I was horrified when they told me I had answered "George W. Bush." I immediately corrected myself and informed them that I was wrong in that answer, that I knew better and that Al Gore had actually won in November.

The first moral of the story is this: If a disoriented manic-depressive with a brain tumor can correct a wrong answer to that question, surely a great nation with a Constitutional government that has endured for over 200 years can also correct itself, it is long past time for our government to live up to its potential and make the change in leadership that justice demands.

I would like to believe that our government is at least as coherent as I am in the midst of a tumor-induced seizure.

In the ER I had two additional seizures before I stabilized. Somewhere in that process I had a CAT scan that revealed what would be identified as a brain tumor. My girlfriend in Florida got that information and did some research. It turns out that for a man over the age of 40 who has had a recent history of increasing headaches, neck pain, drowsy fatigue and other such symptoms, a doctor is well advised to look for a brain tumor.

Now, I ask you, what kind of cancer is it that men are taught to be hyper vigilant about at about the age of 40? Can you say prostate? Is it going too far to suggest as a second moral of the story that the American man has been bamboozled into sticking his head up his ass?

The five days or so that followed were largely a blur. I was put on potent drugs and probably slept for twenty hours a day until my family got disgusted with the doctor who read my MRI (which took two attempts, remember the table I destroyed in the first seizure? It made lying on my back for the first MRI impossible. On top of which I am too large to be in an MRI in the first place.) Anyway the doctor who read my MRI was hard pressed to bother to tell us anything about it or suggest a treatment plan.

In the end I checked out of the small community hospital that had a great nursing staff and "split the difference" in terms of doctors and headed to what may be the best hospital in the country. Now it appears I am off into the wilderness to arrange for medical assistance to pay for lifesaving surgery. This is where Democrats really need to sit up and take notice.

I already have an application pending with the local social services agency. It's a good thing. The standard policy is to reject the first application. Anyone who does business with them can tell you as much. Note this and note this well. I don't live in the cotton belt where people are just discovering "compassionate conservatism." I live in a traditional Democratic State where the last Republican Governor was named Agnew.

Even in Maryland we have yet to pass through "kinder and gentler" in terms of distribution of social services. The Clinton Administration has yet to have any impact on the distribution of social services in Southern Maryland. As far as I can tell we are still stuck in the mean spirited hatefulness of Reaganism.

Furthermore it is worth noting and noting well that the benefits for which I am applying are Social Security and have effectively been given away in the form of tax cuts to the wealthiest 1% of the population.

It may well be that the SCotUS5 killed me with their criminal decision in Bush v. Gore. It is almost 100% certain that they killed someone. It is also 100% certain that neither they nor the pretender they installed would care if confronted with knowledge of who they killed and how.

I think this leads us back to the first moral of the story, it is long past time to impeach, remove from office and prosecute all of those who were involved the coup of 2000. I think murder for pecuniary motive qualifies as a high crime.

If I am not around let the re-election of Al Gore or the election of John Edwards be my memorial at the very least.