Friday, July 17, 2009

Healthcare "Reform" Sanctions Torture, Death

By Alan Caruba

The utter insanity of our leaders in Washington, D.C. is exemplified in Vice President Joe Biden’s statement to a recent meeting of the AARP. “We have to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt.”

Just how does one do that? If, as Biden says, the nation is “going to go bankrupt”, how does spending more money achieve solvency? I am not an economist, but I thought one avoided bankruptcy by spending less. It would be more accurate to say that the Obama administration and the Democrat-controlled Congress is bent on bankrupting the nation by taxing more and spending more.

The current so-called healthcare reform is a perfect example of how crazed these people are. While on one hand denouncing “torture”, the healthcare bill would institutionalize it.

As Dr. Elizabeth Lee Vliet, M.D., an author of several consumer advocacy books, points out, “Water boarding, holding someone’s head underwater until he thinks he’s drowning, is called torture when done to terrorists, but $400 billion in Medicare cuts as part of the new government healthcare ‘reform’ may end up causing a horrible and frightening death for our sickest senior citizens.”

One stated method by which Congress proposes to save money is to deny hospital readmission within 30 days to someone suffering congestive heart failure (CHF). “If not treated rapidly, CHF causes a person to die by drowning in his or her own body fluids. Not okay for terrorists, but okay for our own citizens?”

Dr. Vliet warns that the proposed Medicare cuts will ration surgeries, antibiotics, MRI’s and CAT scans. Canada’s healthcare system already does this and the result is that “patients die because they cannot get treatment.”

Can’t happen here? In the June edition of Health Care News, published by The Heartland Institute, there’s a report that “The Oregon Health Services Commission has drawn up a formal procedure for rationing health care services available to recipients of taxpayer-subsidized coverage.” The commission listed 680 common medical procedures and treatments and ranked them in order of priority. Only the top 503 of the treatments would reimburse physicians.

A June briefing paper from the Cato Institute provides ample warning of what a national healthcare system, based on mandatory health insurance, will hold. Michael Tanner took a look at the Massachusetts reforms passed in 2006. “Health care costs continued to rise much faster than the national average. Since 2006, total state health care spending has increased by 28 percent. Insurance premiums have increased by 8-10 percent per year, nearly double the national average.”

“Program costs,” noted Tanner, “have skyrocketed. Despite tax increases, the program faces huge deficits.” One of the solutions under consideration in Massachusetts is “rationing.” And, of course, “a shortage of providers, combined with increased demand, is increasing waiting times to see a physician.”

Rationing and waiting times are a polite way of saying torture and death.

A July 15 editorial in Investor’s Business Daily, “It’s Not an Option”, revealed that the healthcare reform bill the House passed contains “a provision making individual private medical insurance illegal.”

It is on page 16 of a 1,018-page document. “Under the Orwellian header of “Protecting The Choice to Keep Current Coverage”, the “Limitation on New Enrollment” section states, “Except as provided in this paragraph, the individual health insurance issuer offering such coverage does not enroll any individual in such coverage if the first effective date of coverage is on or after the first day” of the year the legislation becomes law.

Investors Business Daily points out that, “From the beginning, opponents of the public option have warned that if the government gets into the business of offering subsidized health insurance coverage, the private insurance market will wither. Drawn by a public opinion that will be 30% to 40% cheaper than their current premiums because taxpayers will be funding it, employers will gladly scrap their private plans and go with Washington coverage.”

The so-called healthcare reform will not only torture and kill Americans by rationing medical procedures; it will destroy the insurance industry providing coverage to an estimated 120 million Americans.

When my Mother broke her hip, the local rescue squad was there in minutes, transported her to a nearby hospital, and within a day or two, she received a hip replacement. Back home, she recovered from the surgery and was soon mobile again. She was in her 90s at the time and, under the so-called “reforms” Congress is trying to impose on Americans, she would have had to wait…and wait…and wait.

Torture and death. That’s how Congress and President Obama defines “reform.”


Guy said...

Richard Cohen's piece at the IBD site postulates, in regard to our health care "How things could be worse than they are now, I cannot imagine." I simply had to respond to that, and sent a searing letter to the editor there. Here is an excerpt from it ....


Richard Cohen must have just returned from an emergency room visit. To make the statement "How things could be worse than they are now, I cannot imagine" in reference to our health care system indicates one of two things .... either he is one of these Obamaniacs who swallows every Obama proposal without thought or examination, or else he is still seriously doped up. Our health care system is not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it is without question the best in the world. It can get a LOT worse. Just have him go spend a day dealing with the Social Security Administration, his local Child Support Enforcement Agency, Bureau of Motor Vehicles, or any other State or Federal agency. The Federal Government is totally capable of RUINING our health care system, make no mistake about that.

Yes, things may be a little slow in the emergency room of a major metropolitan hospital today, but you probably aren't going to die there. Suffer a heart attack or a gunshot wound in any other country in the world, and I'm guessing you'd have a less than 50% chance of survival. Yes, in our hospitals, you may get shuffled around a little, as they clear out the hundreds of indigents and illegals standing in line for free treatment, but you will get the treatment you need, and so will all the other people there who don't even really have a right to be there. We've become so spoiled in this country. We expect everything to be perfect, and we expect it NOW. Things have been so good for so long that we are now unwilling to suffer even the slightest inconvenience, especially when it comes to our health care. Richard needs to take a trip or two out of the country to get some perspective....


I went on to detail the sort of reform I think we actually need, which is insurance reform, not health care reform. I just get so angry when people bash or system, which is the envy of the world!

ytba said...


This isn't specifically about O'Bunko's "Health" Care (camouflage for "Stealth" insertion of Kavorkianesque policies of infanticide and euthanasia), but a general assessment of what we can expect if O'Blunderer's policies bear their evil fruit.


Carolyn said...

Very Scary. I heard this week on Glenn Beck that Mass. health care is eliminating care for LEGAL immigrants. Those with student or work visas. Kind of like myself. Now, I know obamicare will provide excellent services to illegals, too bad the rest of the country will suffer.
God Bless you Mr. Caruba- and I hate to say it, but I wonder if your Mom would have even been seen under obamicare?

Louise W said...

Thanks, Alan, for a fresh perspective on proposed health care reform.

To think that everyone in our nation will have to change our health care because of those who have none is ludicrous. It reminds of childhood when the entire class had to stay after school because one or two children were talking.

Medicaid is the worst managed program of all in the area of health care. Doctors are paid months later than their service and paid very little at that. The maximum you can make to obtain medicaid is below poverty level. Why not increase the funding for this particular agency and leave the rest alone? The saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" comes to mind.

Buzzg said...

In Canada they have a system much like the one being proposed for us. If this is such a boon to mankind, why do Canadians flock across our border to receive health care here?