Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Could their fundraising actually get sleazier?

via ABC News: DeLay's Diploma Mill

The good news reached the Jamestown, N.Y., office of Dr. Rudolph Mueller in a fax from a congressman in Washington. Mueller had been named 2004 Physician of the Year.

"My secretary came running in and said, 'Dr. Rudy, look at what you've won, you're Physician of the Year,' " said Mueller, an internist.

But to receive the award in person at a special two-day workshop in Washington last month, Mueller found out that he would have to make a $1,250 contribution to the National Republican Congressional Committee. It was a disturbing discovery, he said.

"To actually buy your award and it's not from your peers or from your patients or from the community that you serve, it's really deceptive," said Mueller, author of "As Sick As It Gets: The Shocking Reality of America's Healthcare, A Diagnosis and Treatment Plan." "It's not being honest, it's just not right."

To see what the award process was all about, Mueller sent in his $1,250 contribution and ABC News paid for his travel to Washington for the scheduled events March 14-15, which included a tax-reform workshop as well as appearances by House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, and President Bush.

Mueller soon found he was not the only winner. There were hundreds of Physicians of the Year present, many of whom found the criteria for being selected equally as opaque.
...
Republicans, under the direction of DeLay, came up with the idea for the awards five years ago as a means of helping to raise funds for the congressional campaign efforts for their party.
...
A Republican congressional spokesman said DeLay stopped direct involvement in the program two years ago, but the majority leader was the guest speaker this year at the awards ceremony luncheon, giving a speech that included proposals well-tailored to the doctors' interests.
...
Mueller said most of the talk at the sessions was about marketing, lawyers and taxes, and that he was met with silence when trying to raise the issue of the lack of affordable health insurance.

"This is the real crisis," Mueller said he told the congressmen on one panel at the events. "Please, I am begging you."

The congressmen said nothing and quickly called for a question from another Physician of the Year, Mueller said
.

Later that day, Bush spoke at the NRCC dinner, thanking the attendees for their "investment" in the party. "You're making a wise investment about the future of this country, an investment made upon principle, an investment made upon freedom, an investment that will help us stay a prosperous nation, and an investment that will allow each and every American to rise to his or her own God-given talents," he said.


Oh, my yes. Buying your own award validates the same important principle that supports the Bush family's "investment" in a "Champagne Unit" billet in the National Guard for young Junior, and the "investment" in silence via the awarding of the Presidential Medal of Freedom to George Tenet, Paul Bremer and Tommy Franks.

The next logical step must be the Republican Congressional Medical School, where an "investment" of $100,000 will get you a medical degree and the right to opine on Fox News regarding the cognitive functioning of anyone (other than the President) charged with existing in a persistent vegetative state.

Anything is now possible, because the tether connecting the folks running the show to reality has simply snapped. The clincher:

A Republican spokesman said there were thousands of doctors around the country content with their Physicians of the Year awards, and that there was nothing about the program to apologize for.

Well sure. If we grifted one guy, that would be a problem. But we've run this con thousands of times. There are thousands of "Physicians of the Year." What's the problem?

Guys, my inbox is stuffed daily with scams like the "Nigerian Advance Fee" scam. Just think how much dough you could rake in with THAT one. You've "invested" years of effort in cultivating the most gullible segment of the population. Time to get serious about reaping what you have sown.

4 Comments:

Anonymous jillian said...

The answer to your question....NO.

(well...I hope anyway.)

I received a fax from DeLay's office saying that I was part of a Small Business Commission...but of course, I had to pay money to help them to place a full page ad in the WSJ.

11:00 AM  
Blogger Olaf said...

Cripes. About the only thing left for us to discover about DeLay is that he is trafficking in illegally obtained third-world kidneys and hearts, and that wouldn't surprise me.

12:01 PM  
Blogger 456hea said...

As creep DeLay put it himself when referring to the Schiavo judges "The time will come for the men responsible for this to answer for their behavior," so it shall be for Mr. DeLay.

2:43 PM  
Anonymous phoofer7 said...

Olaf, there is no way Tom DeLay is going to get near anything even resembling a heart. Besides, any self-respecting heart would run at the sight of him anyway!

8:11 AM  

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