Last week, Glenn shared a Politico story that reported the NBA had been approached by the Obama administration to help promote and raise awareness for the Affordable Care Act. This week, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is looking for more support, this time from the NFL.
From the beginning, Glenn has said that the NBA would agree to promote Obamacare under the guise of raising public awareness. In reality, Glenn believes the NBA is less interested in public health and more interested in the federal dollars and special favors the league and team owners would most likely enjoy in exchange for their support.
“And it’s bad enough with the NBA. Now it gets even worse because this is getting into almost sacred territory. Now you’re talking about NFL,” Pat said. “They’re also trying this with the NFL. They are in talks apparently, Kathleen Sebelius, our HHS secretary, is in talks with the NFL to help promote new insurance options under the universal healthcare system.”
It is well documented that when it comes to sports, Glenn is uninterested at best. But Pat and Stu are both big sports fans and, more importantly, huge NFL fans.
“That is a real problem,” Pat said. “I mean, that creates quite a dilemma because I’m pretty much in love with the NFL. Far more than the NBA.”
“And this is why they will do it,” Glenn said. “Because if you’re so dead set against [the ads], are you going to stop watching the NFL?”
Remarkably, Pat said he would stop watching the NFL if they chose to promote Obamacare. “I will,” he said. “I love it, but I can live without it. I didn’t think I could live without playing video games, but I’ve been fine since giving it up.”
Sebelius and the HHS know that the captive audience an NBA or NFL game provides would be far larger than any other marketing campaign could reach. Furthermore, the demographic watching a basketball or football game (largely 18 to 35-year-olds) perfectly aligns with the very demographic the government needs to opt-in to the Obamacare exchanges in order for the system to work.
“This is the quote from TIME Magazine,” Stu said. “’The exchanges need 2.7 million 18 to 35 year olds sign up. If too few choose to enroll, the exchanges will fail and so will the law.’ That’s why they are going after the NBA and the NFL. They are getting young people that don’t need this insurance, by the way. The vast majority of them will be wasting money on it.”
“I wonder how many people will really take a strong stand,” Pat said. “If the NFL gets in bed with this administration and starts promoting something they vehemently disagree with, will you still watch the NFL every Sunday, Monday, Thursday?”
While Pat was steadfast in his decision to boycott the NFL should it choose to get involved in promoting Obamacare, Stu wasn’t so sure.
“I will continue to watch,” Stu said. “I can’t stand this law and I will be infuriated if they promote it. However, I will say that [the NFL does] a lot of things I don’t like, including all sorts of crazy green propaganda that drives me crazy.”
“Right. And you just keep taking it,” Glenn questioned.
“Well, you know, I mean, you go to movies where the actors are out there promoting this crap all the time,” Stu concluded. “You deal with businesses all the time that disagree with you politically.”