Another Reason to Avoid TV

tvAccording to Advertising Age, now that Romneycare is being imposed, there will be an “explosion” of advertising by the corporations and fake charities it was designed to rescue:

Using projections from PricewaterhouseCoopers, Scott Roskowski, senior VP-marketing for TVB, a trade association for the broadcast TV industry, predicts health insurers will spend $500 million — or more — on ads this year. He also says his estimates are conservative. Why? Mr. Roskowski said the industry stands to gain $100 billion in new revenue because of the Affordable Care Act’s mandate that nearly all Americans have health care coverage.

“This is really the growth sector in local broadcast television,” Mr. Roskowski said. “It’s going to be a heck of a year.”

And the fun continues! There will also be a matching boom in right-wing advertising encouraging people to boycott enrollment in Romneycare.

Meanwhile: “All in all, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that there will still be about 31 million nonelderly Americans uninsured in 2023.”

Only in America!

Gougers’ Paradise

The glories of leaving things to “the market” prove themselves from the very outset. Here’s a graph from today’s New York Times:

birth

And, of course, it gets even better! According to the Times:

The chasm in price is true even though new mothers in France and elsewhere often remain in the hospital for nearly a week to heal and learn to breast-feed, while American women tend to be discharged a day or two after birth, since insurers do not pay costs for anything that is not considered medically necessary.

Obama to Astroturf for Private Insurance Bailout

astroturf As I often say, Orwell would be out of a job in this society. The latest proof takes the form of the candidate who lied his way into the White House by running a “Change You Can Believe In” marketing scam, and then (among scores of other betrayals) proceeded to ignore public opinion and bailed out the nation’s failed for-profit medical system. Now, as the Supreme Court, which itself has since removed the last vestiges of restrictions on the naked purchase of political offices, prepares to hear oral arguments on the legality of the “individual mandate” portion of the private insurance bailout, the Obama Administration is preparing to send out phony “grassroots” groups to moan and wail in favor of the bailout on the steps of the courthouse!

The “individual mandate,” of course, forces everybody who is ineligible for Medicaid or Medicare to purchase private health insurance, aka a defective product designed to enrich the already rich and avoid any suggestion that there might be problems with capitalism or merits to public enterprise.

Market totalitarianism in action.

Shame Has No Place in Marketing

vitaminwate The Coca-Cola Corporation peddles its “Vitamin Water” brand of sugar-water as a vehicle for harvesting dollars from the long-standing (and largely business-implanted) public over-estimation of what vitamins are and what they do for human health and performance. A decent society would ban this pointless, cynical landfill fodder, and fine Coca-Cola for planning and promulgating it.

Something milder than that has happened in Britain, according to Advertising Age. There, the Advertising Standards Authority (an unthinkable institutional possibility here in the USA, of course) has told Coke it can’t run its normal ads for Vitamin Water, due to their blatant, exploitative falsity (which, of course, is the same thing as the brand’s very purpose and plan).

The news there, though, is more about the shameless, laughable lies Coke presented in its losing attempt at self-defense. As reported by Ad Age:

One poster was headlined “More muscles than brussels.” The complaints challenged the implication that the drink’s health benefits made it equivalent to eating brussels sprouts — a popular U.K. winter vegetable. Coca-Cola claimed that the phrase was instead a reference to former action-movie star Jean Claude Van Damme, who is commonly labeled the “Muscles from Brussels,” referring to his origins in the Belgian city.

Another ad claimed, “Keep perky when you’re feeling murky.” It jokingly advised consumers that if you drink Glaceau Vitaminwater you won’t have to waste your sick days on real illness, and can use them instead “to just, erm, not go in.” Coca-Cola insisted that the “perky” claim was about mood rather than health, and that it did not imply that the drink could prevent illness.

The ASA also received complaints that the ads promoted the range of drinks as healthy, when in fact they contain high levels of sugar. Coca-Cola’s defense was that the products are clearly labeled, and that 7.5 grams of sugar in 100 milliliters is not a “high sugar” content. However, the ASA upheld the complaints because the sugar contained in one Glaceau Vitaminwater represents 26% of an adult’s recommended daily sugar allowance.

It would make an excellent project to study the course of other corporate defenses to ASA charges. These speak volumes about the depth of dishonesty and contempt at the very heart of big business marketing.

The Voice of “Change”

obama-reagan Here is what Obama just said to George Stephanopoulos about his proposal to compel all citizens to purchase corporate medical insurance:

What it’s saying is, is that we’re not going to have other people carrying your burdens for you anymore.

Anymore?

Somewhere, a used car lot is missing its top bait-and-switcher…

Or maybe not

Obamanocchio’s Mandate Excuse

Obama, in delivering on his campaign promise to the oxymoronic “private medical insurance” corporations, is going to make purchasing one of its defective, extortionary products mandatory for all U.S. citizens.

As The New York Times reported on Sunday:

[I]nsurance companies have never wavered. Starting two weeks after the 2008 election, they have said they would accept greater federal regulation of their market practices if Congress also required everyone to have [private-sector] health insurance.

[Obama certainly delivers for his overclass patrons, doesn’t he?]

This, of course, necessitates a constant river of Reaganesque lying to voters.

obamaliarOne of the latest whoppers came right in Obama’s woeful and patronizing (one wonders what percentage of those who voted for him fit under the belittling label “my progressive friends,” i.e. all those who expected Obama to deliver at least some beneficial, public-spirited changes) “health care” speech last week.  It was this:

That’s why under my plan, individuals will be required to carry basic health insurance — just as most states require you to carry auto insurance.

This is patently, brazenly, Ronald Reagan-style, false.

Purchasing automobile insurance is not mandatory.  If it were, it would long ago have been turned into the very kind of  public, single-payer, not-for-profit system that was, is, and ever will be the only possible solution to the nation’s medical insurance scandal/disaster.

Clearly, we radicals, progressives, and realists need to find ourselves some actual friends.