I'm glad to see the AMA is still living in some sort of fairytale land where doctors have money trees growing in their yards. This sort of stereotype only fuels the already crappy image the public has of us.
Here's the reality: In 2013 (my worst year ever, due to several factors) Dr. Grumpy's solo practice salary came out to $99,354. That's working 60-70 hours per week, with 4 weeks of vacation.
Now, I'm NOT (emphasize NOT) complaining or bragging. I'm just stating this as a fact, to make a point. I know there are MANY people who'd be grateful to be able to make that. I'm thrilled to have a job I like that allows me to support my family.
But the reality is this: I drive a 14 year-old Nissan Maxima with the passenger door smashed in. Sending me a booklet telling me that, as a "qualified physician," I can save $1000 off a $92,000 S-Class sedan, $3000 off a $72,100 CLS-Class coupe, $4000 off a $116,000 CL-Class coupe, $3000 off a $114,200 G-Class SUV, or $3000 off a $106,700 SL-Class roadster... just shows me how fucking incredibly out-of-touch you guys are with the reality facing today's doctors.
Granted, I'm not a member of your organization. Honestly, I'd rather spend the $420 annual fee on my kids. To the best of my knowledge, an AMA membership gets me a journal I don't have time to read, discounted admission to an annual meeting I won't go to, and, obviously, a token discount on a car I can't afford. In fact, if I was a member, I'd be pretty pissed to find out this is what you were spending my annual fees on: getting me a deal on an imported car that costs more than I made last year.
American medicine is in a serious crisis right now. I'm not going to take political sides, as there are plenty of blogs for that. But my point here is that you guys are obviously clueless as to how much docs are really making.
Not to mention medical students. The next generation of docs are coming out of school $200,000 in debt. Residency pays maybe $40,000 a year, and they're at the ages where they're starting families, buying first homes, etc. Then they get to go earn practice salaries that (like mine) are dropping each year. So realistically the only "luxury automobile" they'll get to ride in... is a hearse.
Note to medical students- if you're doing this thinking you're going to get rich, just stop now and cut your losses. In fact, I'd get out regardless of why you're doing this.
But, I'm glad to see you AMA guys are on the ball. I'm sure there are SOME doctors out there who can blow that kind of money on a car (likely all on your board of directors) and it's reassuring to know you're doing something to benefit them.
The rest of us hard-working docs trying to practice ethical front-line medicine will stick with our old cars with the sides smashed in.