Friday, November 28, 2008

Why Is Kennedy's Tumor Important?

Kennedy's tumor

Why Kennedy's tumor?

Ted Kennedy, after years of plastering a cellphone to his ear, developed a Glioblastoma Multiforme -- the worst possible brain tumor -- deep to his ear in the parietal lobe of his brain.

Everything about Teddy's brain tumor (and perhaps Kennedy's life) is metaphorically relevant to the history, current state, and future of health care in the United States. And, just like Ted Kennedy, that health care is about to go in the wrong direction, much as the result of this man's insistence over the years that America was in the midst of a health care crisis.

Teddy's pre-morbid opinions and actions; his disease presentation; his familial and social history; his diagnosis, treatment, care and follow-up are all alike parables created perfectly for this time and our age and in line with the very subject which purportedly formed the center of his political universe -- a universe now invaded by the most wicked of wicked cancers.

Kennedy's Tumor is an incredibly clever device of destruction that seems to have been created by someone who knew what He was doing. It can't be stopped, can't be cured. Ted's tumor, now that it is established, will grow relentlessly until it finally overwhelms him.

The misapplication of the word crisis to the care of sick human beings -- as opposed to the insurance and distribution issues to which it actually pertains was the same tumor. Planted in the public's conscience it has grown -- despite all logical and moral efforts to stop it -- to where now it is overwhelming public consciousness and drastic measures are being taken to "cure" this disease.

Kennedy's tumor is a parable with many parallels and lessons. It will be a joy to unfold it, like an artichoke, until we get to the bitter hard pit.

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