Monday, March 11, 2013

Rerunning a still relevant column from January 2010

   To the Petoskey News Review:  The recent Guest Commentary by your former Editor Kendall Stanley begs for a response from a conservative who believes in the following statement by President Gerald Ford:  "A government big enough to give you everything you need is big enough to take from you everything you have".  Stanley offends conservatives by saying that "Republicans have shown us they don't care about health care and there is nothing to be gained by even attempting to reform the system".  His insinuation that those who don't believe that Universal Health Care is the answer are somehow deficient in either intellect or humanity, or both, is offensive.  After eliminating illegal aliens, those who turn down employer offered insurance and those who have failed to enroll in Medicaid and S Chip, we come to a more reasonable number needing government aid, and they could receive health care in free clinics and emergency rooms across this land. Care, not insurance, is key. The notion that this health care bill will still fail to cover 10 million people while controlling the health care policies and care of ALL Americans is proof enough that this is about more than health care.  It is about an ever-expanding and controlling government which results in the loss of liberty for Americans. 
   The idea that Republicans are so morally challenged that they should be excluded even from the debate and legislation which affects 16% of our economy defies the fact that Congress works for ALL the people, not just for those who currently hold the majority. In a Constitutional Republic, the majority does not rule as a Dictator does.  85% of Americans actually like their current health care plans, and 61% are not in favor of Obamacare.  Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are rife with fraud. Fixing these problems would require no new laws.  We may like our current Medicare, but it, like Medicaid and Social Security, is nearly bankrupt.
   Speaking about the expense of the bill is no “guise. We will be taxed for 4 years prior to receiving any benefits, while continuing to pay for our current insurance. Who could believe that this proposed bill can insure up to 30 million more citizens with apparently no additional cost?  Another section of the bill calls for 111 new government agencies, for which we will have to pay for office space, salaries, and pensions.
   As to the stated “guise” of “death panels”, Sarah Palin referred to certain sections of the legislation as such to bring attention to the probable results of the bill.   The Comparative Effectiveness Research “panel”, for instance, will decide which medical care is worthy of coverage. Dr. Ekzekiel Emanuel, Obama’s  health care adviser, has pertinent beliefs, giving us insight into what Obama has in mind with this bill. Emanuel has said: "Doctors take the Hippocratic Oath too seriously".  And, "The youngest and oldest of us with poor prognoses should have their chances at further life attenuated (weakened)".  As Obama has coached us, “Don’t tell me words don’t matter.  Just words…”  Death Panel as a euphemism for the lack of good care is one that can be demonstrated by the facts.
   Obamacare is steering care away from private insurers toward government control.  Obama's promise that we would be able to keep our current insurance was perhaps true - until and unless we get a new job.  At that time we will be forced onto the government plan.  Meanwhile many employers are refusing to employ more than 50 people, just to avoid the government penalty of not providing insurance, while other companies are deciding to drop their insurance in favor of paying the fines instead.  I ask again just why, if health CARE is the goal, that Obama did not declare that government will provide for the care or insurance of those who are NOT currently covered. Of course, the answer is that Barack Obama and his Progressives want to have the control over Americans.
   Cuts of $400 billion are recommended for Medicare, producing several results: some doctors will retire or stop seeing Medicare patients because of the reductions in reimbursements for their services. Some hospitals, especially those in small communities such as ours, will be most vulnerable to cuts in payments.  This could certainly ration care for us all.
     To say that Republicans don’t favor malpractice suits is outrageous, nearly libelous, and patently ignorant of the facts.
   Rarely have I seen such a biased, derogatory and factually compromised opinion as this one. Words do matter, indeed.