Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The Onion Meets McPaper

As FoIB Brian D notes, it's easy to confuse today's issue of USAToday with the farcical news "organization." To wit, the "hidden nuggets" that have been added to the underlying bill, many of which leave one quite puzzled:

"Companies with 50 or more employees would have to set aside “reasonable” break times for nursing mothers and create a private space for breastfeeding." While this may sound reasonable, why isn't it simply left to employers to offer on their own? Will mom's be nursing "on the clock" or not? And if they get extra breaks, what about other folks who could use a few additional moments of respite? Talk about a nanny state.

"Nurse midwives would be paid the same as doctors for their services under Medicare." Why?! Do they have the same training? Are they required to carry malpractice insurance? What's the criteria for calling oneself a "midwife" as opposed to "doctor?" Not to mention increasing Medicare's already bloated shortfalls.

"Restaurants with more than 20 locations would be required to post nutritional information." Um, yeah, we all hit Mickey D's for the health benefits. Again, what does it have to do with health care reform?

And my favorite:

"Included in the provision is a requirement that vending machines must include nutrition labels." Right. Because our health is the first thing we consider when we're popping in quarters for a Snicker's bar. Of course, this provision could be for the less mentally competent among us:

"Thomas Martin, a 53-year-old diabetic, said the labeling would help him think twice before buying. “It’d be nice,” he said as he pulled an ice cream sandwich out of a vending machine in Maryland." [emphasis added]

Um, Thomas, why would we take you seriously given the circumstances? Perhaps we should add a Bill Engvall provision for these folks. That would be as relevant to health care "reform" as any of these little gems.
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