Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Ridiculosity...(Not a word, but it should be)
I have written about this before, so I truly hate to sound like a broken record, but this whole "a pill for every (minor-bordering-on-insignificant) malady that ails you...." nonsense has finally gone too far.

A new commercial has been airing for a medication called "Mirapex", which apparently is to be prescribed for the "disease" known as "restless leg syndrome". I don't know about you, but when my legs get "restless" I simply shift position or take a short walk. I mean, how ridiculous does the very concept of "restless leg syndrome" sound in the first place? Now, if the made-up disease wasn't bad enough, the drug that treats the made-up disease might be even worse.

One of the announced side-effects of taking Mirapex (besides all the usual symptoms of diarrhea, headache, backache, sexual dysfunction, psoriasis, leprosy, scurvy, scrub pox and Athlete's tongue), is this little gem (paraphrasing): "an increased urge to gamble". I'll repeat that: an increased urge to gamble.

So, now taking a medicine for a disease that doesn't really exist can cause you to go out and toss your life savings away at the slot machines? Actually, that's not all that far a leap: if you are taking Mirapex, you've already thrown money away on: a) A doctor who diagnosed you with a made-up "syndrome' that could be cured by getting off your ass and taking the occasional walk, b) paid to purchase a drug designed to address a problem that doesn't exist and which is advertised 120 times day at couple-hundred-grand for every 30 second spot.

This is the biggest problem in American health care today: there is entire generation of folks who believe in this shyte (i.e. restless leg syndrome, chronic dry-eye, and a few others), and who believe that every one of life's little aches, pains and inconveniences should be cured by a tiny little pill, and who gives a good Goddamn about how much it costs? Especially when you're almost old enough to stick the taxpayer for it, and plan to do so in the future?

I'm talking about Baby Boomers, of course.

They want pills for everything: leaky bladders, creaky prostates, to achieve erections, to achieve erections on a schedule, to hide their herpes. That each drug comes with a litany of side-effects, and that many people might take multiple drugs, apparently never occurs to anyone. Particularly not doctors, it seems, who are more than willing to go along with this rip-off. Take Mirapex to treat your fake-restless-leg-syndrome, then gobble some Zocor to alleviate the increased risk of heat attack Mirapex might represent, then a few slabs of Enzyte because Mirapex made you hornier than a faggot in Boy's Town, and so on and so on, as the cycle continues for each new side effect: high blood pressure, blurred vision, uncontrollable sweats, loosened stool.

God only knows what Mirapex will do to you if you take Propecia (a medicine to treat advanced pattern baldness which is so toxic that they actually warn pregnant women not to be in the same HOUSE with a broken tablet of this stuff).

It's no longer about health with these people anymore. It's about vanity and stupidity. And that vanity and stupidity piled on top of the previous generation's (the..ahem..Greatest Generation) propensity to a) live longer than they have any right to and, consequently, b) suck up more Social Security and Medicare money than they ever had a right to, and you can see exactly how phucked this country is going to be in 20 years time vis-a-vis health care.

I have the perfect cure for "restless leg syndrome" -- amputation. Quick, relatively painless, no expensive drugs required, and when it's all over, no more Restless Leg Syndrome, except for that psychological need to believe you can still feel that leg. That, incidentally, was the same mental impulse that led you to believe you had "Restless Leg Syndrome" to begin with.