Right here in River City.
Because of the Kafkaesque federal budget sequester, Washoe County as of last Sunday fired a visiting nurse, who was apparently tasked with keeping some unimportant old people alive.
Shades of the legendary Governor Gloom.
“We’ve got a duty to die and get out of the way with all of our machines and artificial hearts and everything else like that and let the other society, our kids, build a reasonable life,” stated sensationalist former Colorado Gov. Richard Lamm (D, 1975-87).
While the infamous Death Panels proved a very creative fraud perpetrated by a non-descript right-wing blogger, scared congressional Democrats nonetheless amended the health care legislation by removing funding to pay doctors for consulting with patients on end-of-life issues.
As my late, great Tribune colleague in columny Travus T. Hipp often groused, “when there’s a fight, liberals cut and run.”
Witness how Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, announced that impeachment was “off the table” within hours of winning a majority in the House of Representatives in 2006.
Witness how congressional Democrats announced that single-payer health care (Medicare for All) was “off the table” before Obamacare even came before Congress.
Since when has unilateral surrender proven an effective negotiating tactic?
Was the majority-Republican Washoe County Commission aware that it was becoming a de facto Death Panel when slashing the senior services budget? Since this went public, has anyone in officialdom lifted a bony finger against the scythe of the Grim Reaper?
Alas and alack, most government bodies act as Death Panels sooner or later.
Our priorities are demonstrated by how we spend our money. We love war, the most destructive and counter-productive use of taxes.
We are easily rich enough to offer free public education to anyone motivated to do the work. Instead, we have created a government-funded industry of expensive private schools that compete with public institutions and drain taxpayer money.
College is increasingly out of reach for countless hopefuls.
Student loan debt now stands well over a trillion and climbing.
Why pay tens of thousands for a university degree when the financial burden will cripple your future? Hell, you can buy a nicely framed diploma online for twenty bucks.
Redirecting a portion of our war spending would cure so many ills. Instead, the feds bankroll countless forms of corporate welfare, as do Nevada state and local governments.
Witness the gambling and mining industries, NASCAR, Apple, Cabela’s, Scheels and Reno’s Union Pacific railroad trench – among so many others.
Meanwhile, Washoe County’s infant mortality rate is sharply rising.
Babies, like seniors, lie condemned by government Death Panels.
Happy Interdependence Day
The great question remains: When will our Death Panels finally stop making more war veterans?
Esté bien. Haga infierno.
Be well. Raise hell.
Andrew Barbano is a 44-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.