<heavy sigh> We have had American news stations on all day. Its an exercise in futility. We are six hours ahead of the eastern time-zone. The first polls in a small number of states in the mid-term elections won‘t close until midnight in Spain. We won’t know anything until tomorrow morning when we wake up.
But, you’ll notice I am still awake and it is nearly midnight. Jeff and I were yawning at 9:30 and went to bed. But neither of us could sleep. He is now out in the barn working on his Catrike. I am sat here with the news on, again.
Today, I have watched all the biggies. CNN, Foxnews, MSNBC, ABC. CBS. And a trend has emerged. Fear, fear, fear. Some spew conspiracy theories. Others gin up fear of the other party and the people supporting it. I would have laughed at some if it, if it wasn’t so dangerous and serious. Over and over, every news outlet turned to one of their hundreds of political pundits and asked ‘Why is America so polarized?’ I wanted to shout at the television ‘Look in the mirror!! It’s all of you guys!’
We see it so clearly from over here. I read a lot of news from around the world. But, I almost never watch live US news. And something else has struck us both while gluing ourselves to the television today. And it is not political.
What is it with prescription drug commercials? Tepezza, Zoloff, and a million more on American tv? I had forgotten how bombarded we are in the US with big pharma. My favorite are the women running through a field smiling about their menopause prescription meds. There is not a woman on the planet who is smiling about the fun of menopause. Let alone running with other women through a field making head wreaths out of daisies and manically laughing.
I love how immediately after the heart warming video promoting the drug, they begin the laundry list of potential side effects. ‘After taking drug xyz, if you notice your toenails falling off, skin ulcers, , inability to stand unassisted, trouble breathing, including death, please contact your Dr. ‘. Seriously? I’ll get right on calling my Dr after I experience death from taking this miracle drug.
When we lived in the US, our Dr had a sign in his office with a warning. ‘Do not ask me about some drug you saw on tv. I prescribe the correct medication based on your specific medical condition and my expertise.’ I figure you don’t print a sign unless it’s a problem.
But it’s not just prescription drugs. Commercials promoting heath care and insurance. A lot of those. A thousand years from now, the pod people who have survived the climate apocalypse will find a recording of American tv commercials from 2022. And they’ll wonder how a society with such a focus on health and fighting disease, was unable to elevate the health and wellness of everyone in the society.
I haven’t been back to the US in nearly three years. So its been awhile since I have touched, even peripherally, a for-profit medical care system that is unregulated as a foundational feature. And it’s odd to experience it in the midst of a high stress day with so much at stake in our country. A reminder that there is much more work to do in America, if we could just work together.
Its midnight in Spain. The first returns are coming in. So I gotta go. If only I had a prescription for Zlamnofar. If it didn’t cause purple rashes, Tourette’s syndrome, and uncontrollable sweating, maybe I’d be able to sleep tonight.