January 6, 2009
Damn, maybe you shouldn’t have voted for Obama. Think of all the great benefit concerts that won’t ever happen if he somehow manages to pull a universal health-care rabbit out of his hat. You really screwed the pooch on that vote, didn’t you? Imagine if the next time an Austin musician gets leukemia, hep C, or hit by a car, all he or she has to do is just go to the doctor. Weird. Besides, the current system is clearly working: The ailing musician hopes that their friend or manager calls a benevolent club owner, a publicist, and some really kickass musicians and begs them all to donate time and services to put on a free concert to defray medical expenses. Hey! Health care in Austin rocks! Imagine if we blew the $200 million a day we’re spending to foment Iraqi hatred on keeping Americans healthy? Yeah, it does seem a little shortsighted and simplistic, doesn’t it? Don’t worry, getting Congress to vote against their insurance lobby constituency would be a Jesus-sized miracle, to say the least. You can’t fly to the French Riviera on the gratitude of voters. Really, the best we can possibly hope for is some sort of taxpayer funded überinsurance, very likely underwritten by a subsidiary of a shadow corporation owned by Dick Cheney. Lest you recoil in horror, remember that, regardless of how recent indiscretions in the financial sector have torpedoed the economy, America still runs on money. If we can’t make enough of it here, we just borrow it from China or Japan or Germany or some other chump B-list country that doesn’t have the guns to collect. You can’t expect the U.S. government to run on the power of love either. This isn’t Cuba or France or even Canada. It’s nearly impossible to get a doctor to roll out of bed for less than a hundred large a year. If it’s a surgeon … fahgeddaboutit. Surgeons drop about half that per annum just paying malpractice insurance, and if you think you can get an insurance executive (other than Warren Buffett, aka the Mother Theresa of insurance and investment) to roll out of bed for less than a million a year, you need to get back on your meds. Seriously. With the recent shakedown of the investment and insurance industries, the best way to keep the economy strong is to keep taking drugs. We can’t have Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Abbott Labs taking a nosedive. Think of how that would affect Celebrity Rehab With Dr. Drew. What to do? What to do? For now, you can continue to prop up the status quo and support musicians by going to benefit concerts until Obama ruins it all with his progressive agenda. You can get started this Sunday by attending the benefit for Eldridge Goins at Antone’s. Eldridge is a truly phenomenal drummer who just underwent expensive surgery to remove a tumor in his chest. Fortunately he’s got an all-star cast to help him out. This Sunday’s performers include Carolyn Wonderland, Guy Forsyth, Drew Smith’s Lonely Choir, and Suzanna Choffel as well as other surprise guests. Cover is only $10 and won’t cancel out your vote for Obama, but it sure will do Eldridge and Austin music a solid.