The Old Folks at Home

The Old Folks at Home

Sex, Viagra, and taxes

Just about the time George W. Bush began to campaign for the privatization of Social Security, Medicare officials announced that the new drug benefit would pay for pills like Viagra and Levitra. Representative Steve King, Republican of Iowa, the New York Times reported, immediately declared that he would introduce a bill prohibiting Medicare from paying for such “lifestyle drugs.”

“We are promoting abstinence for young people with raging hormones, and yet we are going to ask them to pay taxes for sex-enhancing drugs for seniors? We have only a finite amount of money. When Medicare covers Viagra pills, you are, in effect, taking money away from someone else’s life-saving drugs. There are only two reasons for se...

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