Tuesday, October 18, 2005

October 3rd 2005

Dear Sis

I was reading my USA Today as I do every evening, when I saw a little advertisement (for lack of a better word), or notice (a more appropriate term) from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. They run these every day/issue, in the back of the Life Section along with a photo of a missing child, listing the child's name, age, description and where they're missing from. I see these notices every day and they are always heartbreaking. I hate looking at them, 'cuz each one represents some lost kid, and you know that a certain number of them have been murdered. Occasionally I'll stare at one of the pictures, wondering what could have happened to the child, wondering if he or she is alive, or possibly being held somewhere, in some basement or a cage, under imaginable conditions. There are so many missing, and you wonder, where could they all be? It's a sad commentary on our society.

I'm sitting here on my bunk, half-watching the Monday Night Football game (Carolina is beating Green Bay pretty convincingly and another of those interminable drug commercials just went off the air. It's all part of the inexorable medicalization of America, with the huge, multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical companies bombarding us with slick commercials attempting to convince everyone that they are suffering from some sort of medical malady (real or imagined) and that the only solution is to ask your doctor for a prescription for the comany's miracle drug. When you watch these commercials and pay attention to what is being said (and implied) it is almost comical. But the results are a matter of record as more and more Americans march to their doctors, after self-diagnosing themselves based upon these ads, and demand to receive the prescription. It's all a very well organized and orchestrated game plan by the drug companies to convince us that drugs are the answer to all that ails us. I'm old enough to remember when drug companies were prohibited from advertising prescription drugs on TV, but the drug companies successfully lobbied congress and the FDA to repeal those prohibitions and now the drug copanies spend millions and millions on advertising. And there's a direct correlation between the increase in advertising and the increase in prescriptions, and the BIG increase in profits for the companies. The profit margin for the big pharmaceutical companies is staggering.

Alright, Sis, I'm gonna kick back and watch the rest of the game. (I think we're watching Brett Favre's swan song this year. He needs to seriously consider retiring, I think). Give the puppy a tummy rub for me!

Love & Peace,