IMHO Installment #70: I'm Not Always Charitable

11 Jul 2007


So, this is one of those quickly rattled-off blog posts that, more than usual, reveals what an asshole I really am. Oh well ... Occasionally, I write entries about the weird incoming sales calls I receive as Marketing Director here at Horn Dog Enterprises (HDE). But, today was the first during which a stranger actually asked me for my blood. That's right, our local blood bank has a telemarketing program.

Damn, that has to be a tough sell. I mean, if telemarketing success is usually measured by, say, a .01% positive response rate for idiots to cough up $24.95 for a big-ass book of useless coupons, then how many damn calls do you need to make to actually tap a vein?

Look, I know that there's a supposed blood shortage in this country. That's all you ever hear from the Red Cross and the media. But, why is it that people need to "donate" blood? Why are we made to feel that it's our "moral duty" to do so? After all, when you're given a pint of blood in the hospital, is it likewise freely given? I highly doubt it. It's a product like anything else and, since it's so damn vital, I bet the charge is outrageous (considering they charge like $12.95 for an aspirin for patients stayng there). (In fact, this page cites hospitals that charge up to $300 per unit.)

I've given blood before -- a few times. It doesn't really hurt, and you get free cookies and juice when you're done. But, I can't help feeling that we're going about it all wrong. We shouldn't leave something so vital up to a charity to handle via telemarketing. If there's a shortage, then hospitals should simply start paying people for their blood. Give someone a C-note for a pint, and you'll have healthy people lining up around the block to sell it. And then, by all means, mark the shit up to $300 a pint going out. But don't telemarket for blood. That's just gross.

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