Dr. Roger Swain, a retired Florida veterinarian, has found a second career, and his timing couldn't be better. He has started a franchise that establishes a chain of euthanasia "clinics" that fill a unique but widely needed service; putting senior citizens out of their misery.
"Since the banks pay seniors ½ percent interest on their savings while investing the same money and making six times that, and healthcare options are evaporating, many seniors have decided to just get it over with," said Dr. Swain, in a interview outside the franchise's newest location; a beat-to-hell trailer in the center of a scalding abandoned parking lot in Tampa, Fla.
"I spent a career putting down everything from birds to monkeys to horses-I even put down a giraffe once. Now, that was a tall order," he joked.
"So, by the time the bucket of breathing tubes comes a' wheeling through the door of the clinic, we pretty much know what to do. To preserve the old folks' dignity, every 'Dignity Room' is decorated with bright colors like a kindergarten class and every old timer is talked to like they were one year old.
"We even have a photo room where a client can take one of them old-timey photos where they dress up like a cowboy or showgirl. That way the family has something to remember them by," explained Dr. Swain.
"So how do you-you know-do it?" asked Tawdry Soup. "We have a menu that offers a variety of ways to go," detailed the Doctor. "Our budget package is $28.50. That's where we push a pillow over your face and Dorita, who does the books in this office, straddles it. It takes a little longer than some of the other methods, but Dorita used to ride ponies on the rodeo circuit, so she knows what she's doing.
"If you're a "tuber" and happen to only have 178.50, we remove the tube and let you die from starvation or lack of water-it's the same method currently used in most hospices because it's painless-or so they say. But, instead of a dignity room, this package offers a community room where clients dwindle away with others seniors. You know how all old people automatically like each other."
"On the other end," Dr. Swain went on, "for $7500.00, we offer the Sleepy Peepy, which is a bowl of ice cream laced with enough barbiturates to kill an elephant. I know it's a shameless plug, but please let your readers know we now include funeral services."
"You can even shop for a casket before you go." Dr. Swain motioned toward a rustic Ford Torino station wagon with something in the back resembling a casket stuffed full of old newspapers and fast food wrappers. A back tire looked like it went flat three or four years ago.
Revenues at the Final Destination chain of euthanasia clinics are growing by leaps and bounds due to the ridiculously low overhead and no government oversight, and are expected to top $1 billion this year.
Lobbyists for the company are currently helping Republican senators write a bill that will send the company federal dollars, once used for Medicare.
The money will be used to rapidly expand the franchise to every city in the U.S. so the government can "stop subsidizing someone else's problems," according to one GOP senator.