WASHINGTON — Tickets and merchandise for the joint Def Leppard/Journey tour will be completely covered by Medicare, according to a statement released today by the federal social-insurance program.
The new Part B plan, allegedly inspired by a thrice-forwarded email from an administrator’s uncle with the subject line “CREEPY REALLY WORKS: Reply to 7 People or You Will Die,” will cover up to two tickets, two tour shirts size XL or higher, one beer koozie, and three non-consecutive albums on cassette. Bandanas will require a $5 copay.
“We understand the needs of our aging population,” said CMS spokesperson Seema Verma. “With so many entertainers retiring or dying, it’s of the utmost importance to bring the elderly essential shows and experiences they may not otherwise receive on a fixed income.”
Donald Malme, a 74-year-old lifelong metal fan, welcomed the changes, hoping other ’80s acts will also fall under the Medicare umbrella.
“It’s outrageous. It really is. Big ticket companies like Ticketmaster have been price gouging for years. After all the fees and service charges, a life-changing ticket like Ratt could cost upwards of 500 percent of what it used to,” said Malme. “I’ve been denied Styx’s new album because I had the pre-existing condition of seeing REO Speedwagon five times.”
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Of course, the new benefits do not come without controversy.
“This is, once again, the old, white men of Congress looking out for only themselves. Women’s health and access for the poor continue to be completely ignored,” said healthcare activist and L.L. Bean customer service representative Katrina Franklin. “Where are the Pat Benatar and Kool and the Gang tickets? Our tax money is going to nothing but Viagra and the metal acts associated with it. We’ve created a generation of rock-hard, hard-rockin’ elderly.”
The press release ended in the context of history.
“In 1965, Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare into law. We are acting in the spirit of his intentions… and providing a service for the bands that remember his presidency fondly,” it read.
Article by Tom K.