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Vlog the Inhaler, or The Occasional Video Blog Musings of Jim Thornton

Indentured Servant Available for Immediate Joblock

Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.
With the senatorial election going on today in Massachusetts, my bankruptcy on the installment plan seems to be accelerating.

This is the time of the year when law-abiders such as myself put together our financial inventory of the previous year to give to our accountants so they can figure out how much more we owe.

A few of the highlights of 2009:

Accounting fees: $3250
Property and school taxes: $20,588
Health Insurance premiums: $20,221
Food, federal and state taxes, college, etc.: it doesn't really matter at this point because there is hardly anything left

It has been said that people are more willing to discuss their sex lives than their incomes, and so it is with me.

Let me just say that I truly wish I were allowed to sell Thornton Bonds to China, because this represents my only hope of continuing with the deficit spending lifestyle that puts food-like substances on the pile of wood we call a "table."

In examining my various extravagances, it looks to me like the $500 deductible, 80/20 coverage health insurance plan is going to have to go, sooner or later.

In March, BC/BS of MN will announce this year's annual increase of rates that we in this particular death spiral will be expected to shoulder. Last year, it went up nearly $200 a month; this year, I expect at least as much. With Obamacare once on the horizon, I had figured I could slowly sell off possessions (though the market for old swimming suits, I've found, is not exactly robust on eBay or Craigslist) until 2014, then cut some slightly better deal when I turn 61; at which point, I figured I could continue limping till finally, at age 65, I could start to take my rightful place at the teat of Medicare, sucking as rapaciously as my weakened-to-frailty suck musculature no doubt will have become by then.

Alas, now the "slight improvement at age 61" looks increasingly unlikely.

In 90 minutes, I am going on my scooter to the opthamological practice of my friend, teammate, and eye doctor, "Uncle" Danny Nadler. Ordinarily, I never go to doctors unless it involves the possibility of sexual leprosy (which I am still somewhat suspicious I carry inside my body, though the best diagnostic techniques have thus far failed to catch the Guinea Worm when it surfaces for air.)

The reason I am going to Uncle Danny's is because my identical twin brother John was just recently diagnosed with mild glaucoma in his right eye, and now has to take nightly prostaglandin drops to prevent (what John is convinced but I am dubious) blindness.

Throughout our lives, everything dire that John has had, I have had worse.

I do not believe drops will be enough for me. I am imagining some kind of in-home fire hose which will irrigate both eyeballs for several hours each night.

As if all my current medical catastrophes (taking statin drugs for once high cholesterol, and antidepressants to keep the Black Dog's episodic return for treats a bit less frequent), the prospect of adding glaucoma to my list makes the possibility of being underwritten by any cherry-picking, lemon-dropping Health Insurance Company, for-profit or non-profit, not only unlikely, but 100 percent absolutely impossible.

Which brings me to today's request.

From what I understand, people with "real" jobs, as defined by not working for themselves, who instead receive a pay check from a company big enough to haggle with insurers over group rates, and for whom the Insurance Industry is barred by law from medical underwriting of individuals, could conceivably provide a somewhat better deal than what I now have.

An example I have used in the past: an obese, five-pack-a-day smoker who was incensed recently when his company began to charge him $50 a month for health insurance.

My new plan: before the teat of Medicare bares itself to my thin cruel lips, might I affix my rasper organ on the teat of Industry?

I don't smoke. I am not obese. And I am willing to pay $55 a month for health insurance!

Actually, here is what I am offering, no joke:

If anyone out there in USMS land is the owner/decision maker of a large enough company to provide even the most meager of catastrophic healthcare coverage to his/her employees, would I be able to pay you to hire me?

Figure out exactly what me and my family's participation in your group health insurance company would cost you. Say it is $1200 a month.

You can then pay me minimum wage for the minimum number of hours I need to work to qualify for your health insurance plan. Say this minimum is 40 hours at $7.25 an hour, or $290 a week. This translates to roughly $1250 a month.

Total expenditure for you: $1200 insurance premiums + $1250 minimum wage = $2450 per month. You can write this off your corporate taxes, saving a bit more.

But that's not all!

You then can turn around and charge me $2450 per month for something believable, like maybe a corporate uniform you insist I wear at work. You can say, as one of the terms of my employment, that I must buy a new $2450 uniform from you every month.

My proposal for such a garment: a bright orange jump suit with your company's name prominently displayed on the front and back, along with the line:

Jim Thornton, Indentured Servant for Life to {your company name and logo.}

At this point, you have not actually spent a single dime because everything has been surreptitiously rebated back to you via the uniform cost. I will even make the uniform myself and handle the billing for you! In fact, you are already ahead of the game because of whatever tax savings you're able to glean from writing my salary and benefits off as a business expense.

But it doesn't stop here!

I will also provide free advertising on my vlog and generally extol the virtues of your enterprise 24/7.

And another thing I believe will be of inestimable value to the right kind of executive mindset.

We all know that slavery and indentured servitude are technically illegal. If you accept my proposal, however, I will make no bones about my status. I will tell everyone I meet that I am, in fact, your indentured servant.

Think how much hay you can make with this at the Club?

You are probably wondering why I would prefer to give you $2450 per month PLUS all these other added enticements when my current premiums are only $1711.50 a month (though admittedly certain to climb soon).

The reason: I hate my insurance company so much that to be able to say **** You to them would be worth far more than $738.50 per month.

And when my new plan rescinds my new policy for some new reason that is impossible for us little guy indentured servants to ever predict, and the inhospitable hospital wheels me to the curb for pickup by Waste Mangagement, by then a wholely owned subsidiary of American $$$ Health Amalgamated, I will be able to go gently into the black hole that has been sucking me down for as long as I can remember!

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  1. poolraat's Avatar
    I suspect that if I were to hire you and implement this plan, we would both be wearing orange jumpsuits. But instead of my company name, they would have a number on the front and the letters D.O.C. stenciled on the back.
  2. jim thornton's Avatar
    I don't know why my plan would be illegal, Floyd.

    I can start tomorrow!

    I am so happy to have found a boss I like to indenture myself to!
  3. Kurt Dickson's Avatar
    I'll look into it. The uniform we require is a jogbra and a pink thong.
  4. jim thornton's Avatar
    No hay problema!

    You won't regret having me as your indentured servant!

    This comment brought to you by Dr. Kurt Dickson, MD, emergency room specialist nonpareil.

    At Dickson's (TM), the only thing we close more tightly than your loved ones wounds are our mouths! Dickson's (TM): medical care that nobody in authority needs to find out about!
  5. jim thornton's Avatar
    I would like to invite readers of this particular vlog entry to go to the poll I started in the NSR thread and add to the data set!

    [ame=""]Poll on Health Insurance Cost - U.S. Masters Swimming Discussion Forums[/ame]
  6. RustyScupperton's Avatar
    It works like this. Rile the little white guy with tales of those illegals who won't learn English. Rile them with hatred of "San Francisco libruls" with their gay agenda trying to recruit your kids. Rile them every which way you can, but never let them know the truth, it is a class war and money wins over decency and justice every day of the week in America.
  7. jim thornton's Avatar
    You tell 'em, Rusty!

  8. RustyScupperton's Avatar
    I am proud to subscribe to the Philadelphia Inquirer, home of political cartoonist extraordinaire Tony Auth!
  9. jim thornton's Avatar
    I gotta stop thinking about this insurance trap.

    Some guy just suggested that I should move to a state with better insurance laws.

    Great solution.

    It's almost like the new Okies of Dustbowl 2010. I will load up the truck with a mattress and Ma and the kids, and off we'll go to one of them states that likes our kind.