Thursday, August 25, 2011


I don't know much about Rick Perry, but when I first saw that he was running for President, I got this funny feeling that there was something a little too perfect about this guy from Super-Red Texas. He had the look, the tone, the professionalism, and the vision. He had a record that spoke volumes to his commitment about smaller government and less intrusion.

Well, not so much.

When I read this article, I first thought it was satirical. How could a governor propose that a multinational corporation be allowed to profit from the deaths of teachers while the state is paid for allowing this unethical practice to take place? Even worse, how could that same governor then go to those same teachers and ask the to support the law? It's disgusting.

It reminds me of Capitalism: A Love Story by the iconic Michael Moore. In that documentary, Moore describes the practice of major companies issuing what are called "Dead Peasant" policies on their employees so that the company could cash in when those employees died. In a way, what Perry suggested is even worse, because the teachers who would have the life insurance policies taken out on them were not employees of the company in control of the policy, nor any other entity, including the state. They were retired. Moore made a point in his movie that is very applicable here. There's a reason I'm not allowed to take out an insurance policy on something somebody else owns, like a car or house or life, because I have a vested interest in that thing being lost. A person gets insurance on their own property so that, in the event of unforeseen circumstances that render that property unusable, a person may be able to replace it.

If UBS, the bank that Perry was planning to have pick up these policies, had actually been allowed to do so, that company would have a vested interest in each of those people dying. That's monstrous, no matter how you look at it. I'm not saying that UBS would have attempted to manipulate their market to increase their returns, but the situation does lend itself to such ethical ambiguity. If you're allowing a major corporation to profit from a random persons death, a person who is not providing a tangible good or service to society because they are past their working years, the next logical step in this Fascist mindset is to allow that company bolster it's revenue by any means necessary. After all, isn't no-risk profit what it's all about?

It makes me sick, and this is one thing that should absolutely disqualify Rick Perry. Instead, he's leading in the polls, and no one is saying a word about the immensely unethical and immoral practices he once attempted to put in place, all in the name of balancing the state budget.

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