Friday, February 19, 2016

Sociopathic Medicine

I remember when the United States stopped controlling the price of gold. Back when I was a kid gold was always $35 an ounce. In 1971 Nixon cut the dollar loose from the value of gold, basically making it desirable for citizens to buy the stuff as the price of gold shot through the roof. I don't know much about economics, but I do know what I pay for things. Gasoline has gone from $4 a gallon to about $1.75 as of our last PT Cruiser fill up. That's a good thing, for me. Not so much for those in the oil business. I don't worry about those folks very much. They can always get a job in the new economy, at McDonalds or Walmart.

Yesterday I went to get the prescription for my eye drops refilled. They come in a little green box with a green cap, and they are preventing me from going blind. So with the going blind thing in the back of my mind, I have never thought about not paying the $45 co-pay every month. It's the price of not having to learn Braille. For years my insurance company has charged me that co-pay, so when  I went to pick up the drops I had $45 on my mind. Imagine my surprise when the nice lady at Walgreens told me they were $244.
"Oh no. That's a mistake. I have a $45 co-pay."
The lady put her glasses on and stared at the computer screen, poked at a couple of keys, and without looking up said, "I'm sorry, but your insurance company now has a deductable that you have to meet before the co-pay kicks in."
I was stunned. I was also a fool for not reading the information pack that the insurance company had sent me. There, if you dig hard enough, it tells me that there is a deductable. The bastards slipped that one right by me. At that price, $244, the eye drops that I need to keep from going blind cost $732 an ounce. Just a  little less than the price of an ounce of gold. Thank you Allergan Pharmaceuticals.

I'm told that marijuana, something that I could grow for free in my own yard if the government would let me, something that I'm told will do the same thing that the $732 an ounce eye drops will do, costs around $200 an ounce. The only drawback is that the effect marijuana has on eye pressure only lasts three to four hours, and then you have to take more of it. I suppose you could call that a drawback.


  1. Hi Alan
    I've been up to my armpits in high school adolescents doing my biology student teaching. I've sorely missed your blog and am spending my time browsing here instead of grading photosynthesis papers. I think growing a small patch of "herb" would work very well. My mother in Dallas got a cutting via the mail for a nice heirloom poppy from someone in Florida. Turns out this particular heirloom poppy is also known as an opium poppy. It needs partial shade from the strong Texas sun and my mom gives it a little miracle grow to help it stay "pretty". I've seen your beautiful gardens in your backyard, and I think that finding some "heirloom herb" seeds might be a great idea.

    1. There are a lot of things that I won't grow here in Florida because of the heat. And then there are some things that I won't grow out of my fear of being locked up with some horny lifers in prison. A big, soft, pink pile of flesh can look mighty pretty to those guys.