2010-02-06 11.52.31

010-02-06 11.52.31 by Mulad, on Flickr

When we last left Dr. Ryanstein (Republican Congressman Ryan of Wisconsin), he had managed to persuade his fellow Republicans in the House of Representatives to assist him in creating his political monstrosity – RYANSTEIN (a voucher plan for the elderly instead of Medicare).  Grass root progressives have started the hue and cry to light  torches and chase down this monster.  Naturally, the pundits have stated that the creature is not yet really alive and causing murder and mayhem because Ryanstein lacks a brain ( has not passed the Senate) and has not been charged with lightening (signed into law by the President).  So the worse political crime that House Republicans can be charged with at this time is grave robbing.  Besides, legislating with intent to bankrupt and induce premature death among the elderly is not a crime, unless you are a Democrat wanting to reform healthcare (i.e., Death Panels!).

In fact, we are hearing the usual blather from the Beltway about how “bold” a plan Ryanstein is, and for once, I am in agreement with Beltway wisdom.  Ryanstein is a bold plan.  It took real courage for House Republicans to engage in grave robbing in broad daylight.

As any good horror film fan knows, our intrepid grave robbers and would be monster makers usually lack the foresight or knowledge to have proper refrigeration equipment ready for the corpse and any spare parts.  Unfortunately for Dr. Ryanstein, dead bodies do not stay static.  Corpses rot and produce odors, and Ryanstein is no exception.  This is evident from the pushback House Republicans are experiencing at town hall meetings.

As the aroma of Ryanstein encompasses America, the Beltway wisdom on this monster in waiting will eventually change to “OK.  Ryanstein is a health hazard for Republicans, but all they need to do is rebury the damn thing to solve the problem.”  Sounds simply enough, but it appears that Inspector Kemp, played by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, has caught wind of Ryanstein’s presence.  Inspector Kemp is planning on having that august body vote on giving Ryanstein a brain.

There are no shortage of Abby Normal brains in the U.S. Senate to choose from for Ryanstein.  I vote for Rand Paul as a donor.

It is doubtful that Ryanstein would ever get its brain and go to the President for charging.  Even Her Supreme Abby Normalness, Senator Susan Collins, already has a clothes pin on her nose while shouting, “NO!” to Ryanstein.  Without all Republicans to jump off a bridge with, ConservaDumbs in the Senate will not vote for Ryanstein.   Remember, ConservaDumbs LOVE to vote with them Republicans, but only when tanking progressive bills or finding bipartisan cover.  If some Senate Republicans start to don gas masks, even ConservaDumbs will figure out that Ryanstein is way past its expiration date.

It will be fun to see if Senator Mitch McConnell gets out a surgical saw to obtain Rand Paul’s Abby Normal brain though.

However, Republicans are not giving up on their monster yet.  According to Rachel Maddow, the usual secretive corporate culprits are already spending money to spread lies about Ryanstein.  This monster will “strengthen” and “preserve” Medicare, so corporate America tells us.  What they won’t tell you is that Ryanstein is just an old decaying idea that even some corporate Dems like Obama have embraced as a solution for those without health insurance.  Ryanstein rips up Medicare and replaces it with the dreaded Obamacare!

Basically, the single payer system for the elderly is being replaced with the individual mandate.  You remember the individual mandate?  The mechanism that will supposedly bring competition to the private health insurance market and lower prices, but is really nothing more than corporate welfare for the insurance companies. Tax payers are on the hook to provide pitiful subsidies to those without health insurance who will then be forced to  buy substandard health plans.   The most unpopular aspect of Obama’s healthcare “reform” is now being pushed for the elderly by Republicans.  These were the same Republicans who argued that Obama and the Dems wanted Death Panels for the elderly.

You want Death Panels ?  Try Ryanstein!  A guaranteed health care provider is being replaced with health spending caps.  And the rest of the Republican budget reduces Medicaid spending which many middle class elderly rely upon also.  So Republicans want to ration health care spending for those who will need it most at a time in their lives when they are on a fixed income .  Sure sounds like a recipe for bankruptcy and premature death for the elderly to me.

The only people making a killing off of Ryanstein will be the insurance companies.

So in the plot of Ryanstein, we have the following sequence:

1.  A dead idea, the individual mandate,  proposed as a conservative alternative to Clinton’s health care plan in the early 1990s is resurrected in 2010 as  part of Obama’s health care reform package.

2.  Said individual mandate is denounced by conservatives as an attack upon liberty.  Republicans vow to repeal (kill) Obamacare and the individual mandate.  Other elements of Obamacare are derided as Death Panels for the elderly.

3.  Dr. Ryanstein proposes replacing Medicare with the individual mandate.  He also proposes deep cuts in Medicaid program as well.

4.   Republican controlled House passes Dr. Ryanstein plan for the individual mandate for the elderly and cuts in Medicaid program – Ryanstein’s brainless body is ready for the Senate.

5.  Obama gets off of his ass long enough to denounce Ryanstein.  Individual mandate for every under under 65 is good, but individual mandate for elderly is bad.  No can do on single payer for the non-elderly, but single payer system for elderly is sacrosanct.

6.  Inspector Kemp schedules brainectomy on Senator Rand Paul for Ryanstein.

Mel Brooks could not come up with a crazier plot for a movie.  This shit could only happen in the Beltway.