You got a lotta nerve
To say you got a helping hand to lend
You just want to be on
The side that's winning
By now you've all probably heard of Shona Holmes, the Canadian woman featured in those TV ads that have been running all over American TV in recent weeks, the ones slamming Canada's healthcare system as some sort of nightmarish system from hell.
Well, the truth is now out and the fact is Shona Holmes never actually had a life-threatening brain tumor, as she's been claiming in those ads and all the interviews she's been giving. Instead, according to the Mayo Clinic where she was treated, her "brain tumor" was actually a Rathke's Cleft Cyst on her pituitary gland and "Rathke's Cleft Cysts are not true tumors or neoplasms; instead they are benign cysts."
All this is from a great article by Julie Mason that appeared in The Ottawa Citizen.
A Right-Wing Ad Campaign
Watch the ad here and listen as Holmes states that "I survived a brain tumor, but if I relied on my government for healthcare I'd be dead". This is simply not true. And Holmes, it should be noted, is not just some naive flake being used by a right-wing group to help spread their anti-healthcare reform message, she's actually an activist herself, one who has been all over the American media airwaves giving interviews and spreading lies, half-truths and slander about Canada's healthcare system.
Now there's no doubt that the wait times in this country can be unacceptable (and, since her cyst was starting to cause vision problems, Holmes definitely should not have had to wait months to see a specialist), but if someone wants to criticize our system they should do it without lying. The simple truth is that if a person has a life-threatening tumor in Canada they will be treated and not, as Holmes states, left to die.
Tellingly, if you listen to her talk she doesn't really seem to have much, or any, concern for the uninsured. Being wealthy enough to travel down to the Mayo Clinic for $97,000 private treatment, she seems to only be concerned with people like herself, those with money. The uninsured 50 million be damned.