Remember the scene at the end of Scooby Doo episodes, where some disgruntled curmudgeon would remove his mask and sneer at the Scooby gang, “And I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for you meddling kids?” No doubt he was angry that some truth-hounds had sniffed around and came between him and his fortune.

Well, in a replay of my favorite childhood cartoon, a similar, just as cartoonish scene is unfolding in Washington, D.C. Corporate insurance giants have has their “We-support-health-care-reform” masks peeled away and are revealing their true colors. Sweet talking the Senators into dropping the public option hasn’t worked. Scaring the population with ridiculous lies about so-called death panels became as laughable as the debate performance of the woman peddling the rhetoric. Now, like Old Man Carter in his ghost getup, they’ve resorted to threats.

In a document Democratic lawmakers are calling a “hatchet job,” money-grubbing insurance companies responsible for our health care crisis are threatening to raise rates for those who do have coverage.

Now, more than ever, we need our Senators to support a strong public option. Without any accountability or competition, we can now be certain that real reform is impossible – the insurance companies responsible for this mess cannot be trusted to see us out of it, or, as is now apparent, contribute to any substantive discussion.

Real reform is access to affordable coverage, not blatant lies and threats.