Wednesday, 17 February 2010

The League of One Ounce Mice

This is one of the very few inappropriate acronyms I recall from a list I compiled some years ago. It was a list created in reaction to the improbability that so many organizations, charities and medical conditions happening so serendipitously to be called by a name whose initials spelt out another word that elegantly summed up its mission statement. The chances of the most apt name for their body creating such a word I considered suspicious. I am not a cynic, but it was almost as if they had contrived these names for the very purpose of creating the acronym. Surely there would have to exist somewhere just as many inappropriate acronyms. So for every SAD, the seasonal affective disorder that oh so conveniently made people sad, there just had to be a Sitting On Floors Association. There had, or the world was making stuff up that wasn't real. Of course, the real world then came along to confound my fun. President Obama's attempt to save a million lives a year in the US (give or take) by introducing health reforms was derided by Republicans worried at how poor, unhealthy people keen to survive illness might interrupt the lucrative circle of insurance and health provision. The phrase that seemed to sum up the threat was 'death panels', a reference to the body that directs health resources here. And who are the death panels? I presume they mean the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. Commonly known as NICE. Nice.

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