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I grew up today! When I was younger, my parents were AARP members. I knew the organization was not for me at that point in my life, but I also understand that they would be there when my cohort matured. I am 52 years old now and able to become a member. Because of all the publicity around Health Care Reform, I decided to check out the organization. But within 1 hour of investigating, I was absolutely shocked at what I found. I thought AARP would be there to help me in my later years, supporting me with sensible, politically neutral information in addition to their many other benefits. But I have discovered that they are, at least with regards to Health Care Reform, nothing more than a common political action group, encouraging its members to pressure Washington politicians to push the health care reform bill through by misrepresenting and confusing the public at large on the issues. Today I grew up and realized that I was wrong all those years I spent thinking that old age would be moderated in part by an association with AARP. What a disappointment. Here is an example of what I am talking about:· Proponents of the bill have repeatedly referenced AARP as a partner and endorser in the bill’s efforts. Last night a legislative representative of AARP was interviewed on TV. He asserted the fact that AARP was not endorsing the current Health Care Reform Bill (which version, I’m not sure). Then this morning I listened to President Obama’s Town Hall meeting. He repeatedly was asked questions where he expressed annoyance at all the misrepresentations and misinformation. He was asked a question about Medicare and he once again lamented “there again, is a lot of misrepresentation.” A few seconds later he said “That is why AARP is endorsing this bill.” I then called AARP and they informed me that a.) they have had several similar phone calls today saying the same thing, that b.) that is why they had their legislative person on television last night denying the fact, and c.) that they absolutely have not endorsed the health reform bill. Someone isn’t telling the truth. I am still waiting for AARP to formally ask the President and others to stop misrepresenting their endorsement of the bill.· Per the recorded message I heard on the AARP phone while on hold, I went to www.healthactionnow.org to read about the reform bill. There I really grew up. I found an AARP site that was nothing more than a cheesy political action group site with a very transparent, biased political message. Visitors were encouraged to follow a link and submit a form letter to their Washington representatives that among other things emplores the representative to make sure their constituents know the truth, that “health reform plans currently being debated in Congress would not hurt Medicare,” and that it “would not ration health care.” Honestly, the best case scenario right now is that AARP just doesn’t know the answers to these questions. Best case, AARP is assuming these points based on some level of faith in the competence of the US government to effectively and efficiently execute what it is they are trying to describe, regardless of what is written. That's the best case. Given the history and fiscal health of Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, and most recently the relatively tiny consumer marketing promotion known as Cash for Clunkers, the only sensible assumption is that the federal government would have great difficulty in accomplishing their vision. Not that they couldn't, but we need a whole lot more discussion and discovery before we can say with confidence that the proposal is good. And we absolutely need to stop protraying anyone that resists drinking the kool aid at this early point in the process as un american, an organized mob, or simply a loon. Come on AARP!Sadly, I now see AARP as a very different organization than I thought I knew.
"But I have discovered that they are, at least with regards to Health Care Reform, nothing more than a common political action group, encouraging its members to pressure Washington politicians to push the health care reform bill through by misrepresenting and confusing the public at large on the issues."
Gosh, that sounds simply awful. But what do you cite to prove that - otherwise you are simply throwing around a lot of words but not pointing to anything specific. Which is exactly what we talk about - myths versus facts. Health Action Now has a lot of facts on it. I don't hear you talking specifics.
Give us some links to back up your argument, please.