Monday, April 02, 2007

60 Minutes had a truly stomach-turning segment on the Medicare drug bill morass. A more revolting portrait of our government at work you're not likely to find.

The oodles of scum in this endeavor seems endless. You have Richard Foster, Medicare's Chief Actuary, burying the true cost of the bill. Why? To save his job, threatened to be fired by the Bush administration. (The arm of the bully has reached everyone: CIA, EPA, Justice Dept., etc.). You have Medicare's boss, Tom Scully, who spearheaded the effort for the administration only to take a job as a lobbyist for the pharma industry just ten days after the bill's passage. You have Republican Tauzin, who fought the hardest to get the bill passed and then not too long thereafter accepted a $2 million a year job within the pharma industry.

What struck me is throughout the entire piece, the rats in the crowd are never identified specifically and bluntly. The on-camera politicians all talk of how atrocious the entire thing was, as if it was all the other guy's doing. Never does that "liberal" CBS explicitly name the key players involved and single them out for much-deserved scorn. Oh sure, they show Tauzin and subtly try to make him look bad, but Kroft chooses instead to stay dignified and only hint at the outright shame.

The fact is this bill was the handiwork of the Bush administration and the GOP-controlled Congress. Only they had the power to keep the voting open for almost three hours -- or two hours and 45 minutes beyond the limit. CBS should've stated it was a GOP-orchestrated fiasco in no uncertain terms.

When Republicans grouse about pork (despite the fact earmarks were just fine when they were in control), I say ask them about this $500+ billion pig roast they served up to the pharma industry. The GOP has long been the party of neck-deep hypocrisy, but this current version is beyond belief.

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