Optout.org is at it again! Generation Opportunity, which gave us the Anti-Obamacare ad with the “Uncle Sam” character who looks like a demented Burger King suddenly appearing in the examination room as a young college student’s awaits a gynecological exam, and the “We’ll give you beer if you opt out of Obamacare” tour, has another trick up its sleeve. This time they have gone seasonal with a ridiculous Halloween theme featuring a guy who looks like a deranged, albeit slightly better dressed and groomed, Earl Hickey.
Of course, just as they did in their original ad, they willfully ignored the fact that young adults need not even purchase insurance on their own until they reach the age of 26. Under the new law they can remain on their parent’s policy until then. That is not where the lunacy ends, unfortunately.
In the new ad, a young man is watching an old horror movie on TV when it goes to a “commercial” with the aforementioned Earl Hickey look-alike entering into a wild-eyed rant about Obamacare, “The craze that’s sweeping the nation.” He goes on to say, “Act now and we’ll double your premium — for free!”
Young Chad picks up the remote and changes the channel only to find Earl on the new channel as well saying, “C’mon Chad, don’t change the channel. Become part of the system, Chad.”
Poor Chad becomes frantic, changing channels as fast as his clicker finger can move–only to find Earl on every channel becoming more and more strident. Earl continues to scream at him, “We’ve gotta have you on the exchange! Do it for your country, Chad,” after which he giggles maniacally.
Finally, Chad leaps to his feet and rushes to the cord to pull the plug on his TV.
The doorbell rings and as suspenseful music plays he cautiously approaches the door and peeks out through the window. Seeing nothing, he carefully opens the door to a pair of young trick-or-treaters. Smiling in relief he gives them each some candy, closes the door and turns back into the room–only to have the TV suddenly come back to life with Earl saying, “Okay, Chad, we know everything about you. We’ve got your cell phone and your email.”
Yeah, right, Earl, you and half of the country along with every website he has ever visited. Somehow it is horrific if the government knows what the rest of the country can find out about you with a simple Google search of your name. But it does frighten Chad, especially as his cell phone begins to ring with the screen showing that he has an incoming call from — you guessed it — Earl.
Now in full panic mode, Chad looks back to the TV screen where there is a new message alert– again, from Earl. With the tension building by the moment, the doorbell rings again. Earl looks straight out of the screen and into his eyes and says, ominously, “You better get that, Chad.”
Chad opens the door to find Burger King “Uncle Sam” holding out his trick or treat bag — Oh the horror!
The ad then goes to the closer– the hook that is going to seal the deal and convince the young and invincible that they don’t need health insurance. Two screens–the first telling them not to be scared into signing up for Obamacare (which is not, as portrayed, a government-run, single payer program) and the second telling them that they have options and that they should get the right insurance for them–appear.
That is where this ad goes from wrong to insane. It seems to be encouraging them to go directly to the insurance company or agent who, of course, is going to be interested mainly in his own bottom line rather than what is truly best for them. They will also not be receiving any subsidy from the government if they choose that route–a subsidy which will greatly reduce their out-of-pocket cost for the premiums, possibly eliminating it altogether.
Good job, Optout.org! You are looking out for our youth by convincing them to buy a more expensive product than they need.