The Drugmonkey settled into the soft glow of the nightlight as it filled the room and felt the warmth of scotch slide down his throat. It had been a rough week in the happy pill room, and he was letting it go. Decompressing. Forgetting. Beginning the process of regaining his strength for the workweek to come when the glow... became brighter. Steadily and surely, against the room's far wall a figure appeared. An overweight man it looked like. With wings. And a halo, a five 'o clock shadow, and a glowing white wife beater T-shirt. He had a lot of body hair. The Drugmonkey knew it wasn't good to mix alcohol with Wellbutrin, and as he sat his scotch glass down on the table he swore this would be the last time.
"Fear not, oh pill jockey" said the disturbing yet somehow comforting figure. "I am the Medicaid Fairy. And I bring good tidings!!"
"Oh happy joy!" said the Drugmonkey, "California Medicaid is in the most awful of ways. The state budget is a shambles, with revenue down and those in charge reducing Medicaid payments to providers, already among the lowest in the country, by another 10 percent!! Egads Medicaid Fairy, my friends who run independent pharmacies have told me they will actually lose money on any brand name prescription over $50! Imagine that, losing money by filling a prescription! Please make it better!"
"Make it better I shall, my friend, the Medicaid Fairy has a solution..."
"Yay! I can only assume this plan involves asking those that have benefited the most from living in our society to once again pay their fair share in order to make that society better for us all, as opposed to breaking the backs of small independent businesses. Perhaps we could restore the top income tax rate for millionaires to what it was under the Clinton administration, or better yet, the rate that prevailed during the reign of that stalwart of the GOP, Dwight Eisenhower."
Thirty seconds of silence enveloped the room. Punctured by the sound of a deep belly laugh.
"Oh silly Drugmonkey, we cannot possibly risk returning the American economy to the state it was in during the 1950's or 90's. Plus, most of the drugstore owners who are about to get shafted with a barbed wire penis would not hesitate to tell you raising taxes on the affluent is not a solution to any problem."
"But.....isn't Medicaid funded by tax dollars? So if we collect more of them, then we won't have to subject doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies to these drastic cuts. Right? I mean, more money coming in means more money to spare providers these painful cuts, and maybe a pharmacy could even get paid more than a prescription costs them."
"SILENCE!!" said the Medicaid Fairy. "I have the solution to your problem, and it as follows!! No one will pay any taxes from now on!!"
"Yes! And as a matter of fact, everyone will get a $500 rebate from the state. And pay no more taxes. Ever!!"
"And will they get a puppy too?"
"Yes. And a blowjob from the supermodel of their choice."
"Wow. So the Medicaid Fairy just shows up, waves a magic wand, and enough money appears to keep the providers who serve the poor from getting fucked. I'm pretty sure that's what everyone was counting on happening all along. Can I ask one question though?"
"How does it work, this magical system where we continuously reduce the tax burden of the rich while taking a chunk out of the hide of those upper middle class people who think they belong to the elite of society?"
"It's the magic of the free market Drugmonkey. No one outside of the tea party is capable of understanding."
"In the world of fantasy and magic, of course. In the realm of reality though, you're doomed. I was just fucking with you."
And with those words, the Medicaid Fairy disappeared, and a retroactive invoice for 10 percent of all medicaid payments made since June was left in his place.
Wake up independent drugstore owners. Like it or not, you are most certainly part of the 99 percent.