After work a couple of days ago, I was relaxing in my recliner watching TV coverage of one of those town hall meetings on health care reform. The camera zoomed in on one of those “grassroots” screaming at an elected official while the whole time reading verbatim from a prepared script!

These ‘60s impersonators are doing one lousy job at publicly demonstrating their spontaneous opposition to Obama’s plan for health care reform.

I found it incredibly amusing that these “grassroots” have finally found an appropriate term to best depict them and their despicable actions … “ASTROTURF!” Yeah … as in artificial, needs no maintenance or upkeep, therefore demands no attention. So appropriate. Right on!

I’m thinking that 90 percent of these so-called demonstrators are marching to the drum of the Republican National Committee and their fearless leader Rush Limbaugh. They will say and do most anything in an attempt to derail one of the most critical systemic reforms of the past 50 years in the name of their anti-government philosophy and political agenda.

The late former Vice President Spiro Agnew conjured up the best description of demonstrators as being those “nattering nabobs of negativism!” This is the same loud-mouthed trailer trash crowd that brought us Sheriff Blow and pink underwear. They are rebels without a clue.

Think about it. They rail against proposed health care reform that will extend health care benefits to all Americans and end the policy of exclusion due to pre-existing conditions, but where have they been for the past 50 years when they haven‘t been able to either afford private health care insurance premiums or cover all their body parts? Where’s their angst … their outrage? Apparently, they’re OK with the private sector charging ridiculous costs for health care insurance or denying claims due to pre-existing conditions.

They contend that government has no role to play in delivering health care but these are mostly the same people who already have socialized medicine … Medicare and their prescription drug plan. It will be a cold day in Hades before they give these programs up.

They scream about faceless government-paid bureaucrats deciding who gets what health care benefits and life-saving heroic measures but they don’t talk about the fact that faceless privately-paid administrators have been making these same decisions for generations. Where’s the beef in their argument?

They yell about the cost of health care being paid with taxpayer dollars yet these same nutcases have and are paying out of their own pockets for the health care that has denied for those who can’t or won’t pay. How do you think the $50 aspirin came about anyway?

Frankly, the Astroturf just isn’t making any sense. Defending the status quo is like stabbing yourself in the eye with a stick and liking it! Our health care system is broken and must be fixed before it fixes all of us.

The Republicans and conservatives are so constipated over the results of the last election and the likelihood that they may never regain control of Congress and the White House for years to come that they will sacrifice the health care of the citizens of this great nation in order to promote their own selfish, narrow-minded agenda. Don’t be fooled by Astroturf. Everyone knows a phony. If it looks like a snake, crawls like a snake and bites like a snake … it’s a snake.


Jon Beydler is a 30-year Valley resident and former mayor of Fountain Hills. He lives in Chandler and is president and designated broker of Valley of the Sun Real Estate.

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