By Chuck Rogér
In November 2010, I wrote about the shady conduct of the leadership of the American Association of Retired Persons. Here’s what I said back then.
The organization is trying to paint for its members a portrait of an out-of-control pharmaceutical industry rife with obscene profits. In reality, seniors are paying less each year for the drugs that most seniors use.
Why the trickery? What does AARP hope to accomplish?
The short answer is that AARP leadership’s agenda is not aimed at improving its members’ lives. The leadership tried to create the impression that it was concerned about how Obamacare would affect seniors. Behind the scenes AARP was supporting the government health care takeover.
Additionally, I pointed out that AARP operates similarly to labor unions, whose leaders aim to maximize their own incomes and member benefits, but end up minimizing employment in the process. The November post observed:
Union agendas lean heavily on legislation. To get the legislation passed, the union bosses fill the campaign coffers of corrupt politicians. When the legislation becomes law, taxpayer dollars then bail out irresponsibly generous union pension plans that have gone deeply into debt. The union bosses get compensated handsomely for taking your money and mine to keep the ridiculous pension plans afloat.
AARP works similarly, with two important differences.
1. AARP has even less regard for the welfare of its members than do unions. AARP’s sneaky Obamacare dealings illustrate the leadership’s willingness to tell members one thing while doing another–as long as money flows into AARP bank accounts. AARP members are hurt in the process. This doesn’t seem to bother the leadership.
2. In the case of AARP, the scammed money is not taxpayer money–not directly. Behind-the-scenes deals between AARP and the insurance industry account for the motivation of AARP leadership to be so dishonest with members.
AARP’s endgame in lying about drug prices is yet to be revealed.
Now AARP leadership’s endgame is crystal clear. In The American Spectator, David Catron provides an update which confirms my earlier assessment of AARP’s scheming ways.
Why would a financial conglomerate [AARP] so dependent on insurance-related revenue endorse a bill that promised to wreck the health insurance industry? Then, the penny dropped. One of the ways the Democrats proposed to “pay” for their health care law was by cutting the Medicare Advantage (MA) program by $200 billion. This would inevitably drive many carriers out of the MA market and herd millions of seniors back to the more expensive coverage of traditional Medicare.
How would that benefit AARP? Traditional Medicare imposes much higher deductibles and co-pays on its beneficiaries than does MA, and the vast majority of AARP’s revenue derives from sales of “Medigap” policies that purport to cover those out-of-pocket expenses. In other words, the AARP endorsed a law that does real financial harm to seniors in order to reap a crop of new customers when ObamaCare guts Medicare Advantage.
Catron hits the nail on the head. AARP management betrayed current members to gain hoards of future members. Catron further points out,
If America’s seniors ever figure out that AARP’s endorsement of ObamaCare was a cynical strategy to bilk the elderly, the seniors’ group will begin hemorrhaging members as quickly as its fellow Quisling, the AMA, has lost physicians.
So then, let me ask again. If you are still a member of AARP, why?