Filed under: by: Hey Doc Wait

We saw this commercial (on the home page) the other night, and immediately started asking what was this group that made it. According to Source Watch, this "60 Plus Association" is largely funded by the pharmaceutical industry and has campaigned in the past in health care matters. They advertise themselves as "the conservative alternative to the [AARP]"; their membership form includes this statement: "Contributions to the 60 Plus Association are not tax deductible for income tax purposes.", indicating that they do not have non-profit status, despite the ".org" in the website title.

Like any political propaganda ad for any topic on any side of the debate, this ad is deliberately misleading. Playing off the "death panel" fears, they state clearly that "the government, not doctors will decide if older patients are worth the cost". This has been debunked multiple times (he's a bit partisan here, but he's correct).

If the ad had been from AARP, I'd have sighed and gone on with my life.
If Pfizer had directly sponsored the commercial, it wouldn't be so bad, either. The fact that it was made by a PhRMA front group is what hacks me off. It's the subterfuge that gets me. It's like commercial Continuing Medical Education being sponsored by shell corporations directly funded by pharmaceutical companies who still get creative control over the content being taught.

Of course, I also think that this emphasis on the end-of-life counseling clause turns the whole health care reform bill into a debate worthy of abortion debate in this country. It's already become so emotionally fraught that we can no longer have intelligent debate about this reform bill, because people start hollering about Down's syndrome babies being euthanized. Way to go, 60 Plus Association, for continuing in a grand style what Buckeye Surgeon calls "
an all too frequent quintessentially American archetype; the uninformed, strident, unwavering voice of righteous protest." When I read that, I giggled out loud. And then gave a huge sigh.