Remember the Free Lunch? If your answer is "Ain't no such thing," give yourself a gold star, and admit to yourself that you're never going to work for the Federal government:

Most healthcare plans will be required to cover birth control without charging co-pays or deductibles starting Aug. 1, the Obama administration announced Friday [20 January].

The final regulation retains the approach federal health officials proposed last summer, despite the deluge of complaints from religious groups and congressional Republicans that has poured in since then. Churches, synagogues and other houses of worship are exempt from the requirement, but religious-affiliated hospitals and universities only get a one-year delay and must comply by Aug. 1, 2013.

The rationale for this is ... well, actually, I have no idea what the rationale for this is. If you ask me, and you can be certain the administration did not no past administration ever has, and no future administration is likely to were there some legitimate public-health concern involved, they'd hand out free pseudoephedrine, so people dripping and sneezing won't have to go to work that way and pass their damnable sicknesses on to the rest of us. But the government, in its laughable "all-wise, all-seeing" mode, scorns pseudoephedrine, because once in a while Beavis and Meth-head will get together and cook themselves a batch of highly illegal and dangerous stuff which might actually kill them. Now to those of us who don't torture our brain cells on a regular basis, that's a feature, not a bug; however, to the Feds, it's a deadly threat they must act upon, alongside salt, high-fructose corn syrup, walls with sixty-five years worth of paint on them, everything but the heartbreak of psoriasis. And this year, they've sworn to fight the deadly menace of pregnancy, despite the fact that most people have the "problem" well under control:

[T]his seems really, quite frankly, just stupid. First of all, there is already a such thing as free birth control, which consists of not having sex with assholes who you don't want to have kids with. In America, however, we have this thing where you shouldn't let people make their own personal decisions, so that's clearly out. Of course, there's also the option of, should you find yourself compelled to have sex with assholes, purchasing cheaper birth control. Condoms are $5 and 99% effective when used correctly (i.e. not while drunk). Birth control is $15 at Planned Parenthood.

I give them two years before having sex with assholes becomes another Federal mandate, probably somehow dimly connected to the Americans with Disabilities Act, since everybody knows not having sex makes you depressed, and if you're depressed you can't work worth a damn, and if you can't work worth a damn you're supposed to be able to sue somebody. It's the American way.

But that's not quite the point either. This is:

If you can't afford $15 a month, you have bigger problems, ladies. You have problems you should probably deal with. Or you could possibly stop drinking, going out, having cable, and buying shoes. Or whatever the hell you're spending that all important $15 on. In essence, what I'm trying to say is, it's not my goddam problem if you can't scrape together $15 for birth control.

But... that's discrimination! If some wealthy uptown wench who's seen too many episodes of Sex and the City can screw to her heart's (or some other organ's) content, her poorer cousin who has to live off her EBT card should be extended the same, um, opportunity, should she not?

And so the Feds have decided that we should subsidize them both, whether we want to or not:

If I wanted to give you $15 for birth control. I would. God knows some of you, particularly you who came up with this idea, should definitely not be procreating. But I don't want to. Because I can't, for the life of me, figure out exactly why it's America's problem. Last I checked, unlike the common defense, nowhere in the Constitution does it say that it's a national problem if you have to buy condoms.

Probably the same place it says that if you forget the condoms and the $15 for the birth control, you can still get a Get Out Of Pregnancy Free card: way off in some presumed penumbra. The real beneficiary of this, of course, is the asshole who wants to have sex without consequences. You can find dozens of those guys without ever leaving the Capitol.

The Vent

  23 January 2012

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 Copyright © 2012 by Charles G. Hill