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Crystal Zevon

Crystal Zevon is author of 'I'll Sleep When I'm Dead: The Dirty Life and Times of Warren Zevon,' an oral history of the life of her former husband and lifelong friend and co-conspirator

November 14th, 2011 2:59 PM

Mic Check on Blue Cross/Blue Shield CEO Scott Serota in D.C. today

Occupy Washington D.C. @ U.S. Chamber of Commerce

I've been back at Freedom Plaza in Washington D.C. living in a tent since November 2nd.  We do actions every day, and I'm dying to write about life in general from within an occupy site in the seat of our government, but today's was especially FUN... and, we got fed, too.

The CEO of BlueCross/BlueShield was the honoree at the National Chamber of Commerce luncheon today.  Seven occupiers from Freedom Plaza got all gussied up (I even blew my wad on a shampoo and blow dry for the occasion), registered on line and showed up, one at a time, to attend the luncheon.  Miraculously, except for one of us who didn't have ID, we all got in.  We seated ourselves around the room at different tables, schmoozing with the other luncheon guests, waiting for the guest of honor to address the congregation of health industry professionals in our midst.  I was actually seated with a young woman from the Farm Bureau. 

I engaged in meaningful conversation with this woman, telling her how my daughter had a farm fresh market and cafe in Vermont that just went under.  I told her how we worked with farm families who couldn't afford insurance.  I told her how my daughter and my twin grandsons don't have health insurance.  And, her eyes even watered a bit when I described the plight of a small farmer who was not only struck down by the floods in Vermont, but had a massive heart attack and couldn't pay his bills. 

Then, after we'd finished our free lunch (paid for with your premiums, I'm sure) of cornish game hens, spinach, beets and bulgar, Serota was announced from the podium.  Lenny Bianci stood first and shouted "Mic Check"  He didn't get very far before he was led out, but a nurse from Ohio went next, then me, and the mic check finished with Eve T., an amazing 80 year old activist whom a judge once called a terrorist. Here's what we shouted:

Mic Check! We are the 99%... And we are here... Because Scott Serota...CEO of Blue Cross... Who makes more than ... 2 and a half million dollars each year... Is an example... of the 1%... in the health insurance industry... Who testified in Congress... And influenced the health bill... To create more profit... For health insurers... At the expense... Of human suffering... And preventable death... Health insureres... Are not health providers... They restrict and deny... Necessary medical treatment... And charge increasing premiums...To make more profit... Because of private health insurers... One third of our health care dollar... Goes to marketing, administration and profit... Instead of to health care... 400 billion dollars... Would be saved... If we had... Improved Medicare for all... That money... And the money saved from a... Single Payer health system... Would provide necessary care... For all the uninsured... And the under insured... Right now... More than 120 adults... Die every day in America... Because of lack of health care... That's 45 thousand people each year... Two million people with cancer... Don't get treatment... Because they can't afford it... People have to choose paying for health care... Or keeping their house... or sending a child to college... We say that this situation is not acceptable... So we are here... To tell Scott Serota... And other CEOs of corporations... Which make profit off of necessary health care.... To stay out of our government... To stop lobbying... Against the interests of the 99%.... Get out of health care... So we can have Improved Medicare for all!   WE ARE THE 99%

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