American Elephants


Once Again, With Bells On. The Same Old Snake Oil. by The Elephant's Child
September 8, 2009, 10:38 pm
Filed under: Economy, Health Care, Progressivism, Taxes | Tags: , ,

President Obama has said modestly that “I have a gift” in reference to his speaking ability.  The Wall Street Journal says:

President Obama has decided that another oration will rejuvenate his health-care agenda—despite having given 27 speeches entirely on health care, and another 92 in which it figured prominently. We’ll see how tomorrow night’s Congressional appeal works out, but the important maneuvers are taking place in the cloak rooms, as the White House tries to staple together a majority.  (emphasis added)

So far, whatever Obama’s “gift” is, it hasn’t involved being honest about anything in the health care bills before Congress.  Abortion is not covered, he has insisted, but it is covered in the House bill.  There is no insurance for non-citizens, he has declared firmly, but non-citizens are not only not excluded—  it is forbidden to inquire about someone’s citizenship.

Preventive care will result in vast savings, he claimed, but studies and the Congressional Budget Office point out that Preventive care will add significantly to costs.  Electronic Medical Records will also save money and make health care more efficient he says, but studies show that any savings would be years away, doctors resist the problems involved, and the problem of privacy of medical records and identity theft are serious.  The claim that 46.6 million Americans are uninsured has been thoroughly debunked: the real number is closer to 9—12 million.

There are many, many options that are known to reduce costs. The Democrats refuse to consider any of them. Tort-reform is a big one, for the law as it stands rewards trial lawyers and results in millions of dollars in unnecessary tests and defensive medicine. But trial lawyers are second only to labor unions in financial support for Democrats.

“What’s your solution,” Obama says, “They don’t have one.” Well, yes they do.  Proven to work.

Competition guarantees lower costs, and encourages innovation.  Public options result in poorer quality care, fewer of the best and brightest entering medicine, less innovation, fewer new drugs, fewer new treatments, slower poorer service.

Democrats look at the socialized systems in other countries and want to copy what they have done.  The Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Clinical Effectiveness Research which was authorized and funded by the Stimulus bill is similar to NICE, the euphemistically named National Institute for Clinical Excellence which determines what treatments will be allowed in Britain’s NHS.

Last year, NICE released it’s Social Value Judgments outlining its guiding principles for allocating NHS resources.  In other words they decide if you can have that hip replacement or if you are too old, or if your retarded child can have expensive treatment. So, no, the “death panels” are not in the House or Senate bills, they have already been passed and funded.

Democrats are consistently uninterested in consequences.  They look at the Canadian health care system and see only that it covers everyone, and the fact that Canada’s top doctors are saying it is unsustainable doesn’t sink in.  They look at Britain’s National Health Service and see only the nice organization.  The Congressional Budget Office tells them that the House bill would cost $1.2 trillion over the first ten years, and another trillion in the following decade, and the only way they can find to pay for it is to raise taxes (Obama is not opposed to a soda tax) and to cut payments to cancer doctors and heart specialists  for their Medicare patients.

If we could just have a lot less snake oil, and some real honesty in dealing with the American people, it would be really helpful.  But then Holman Jenkins Jr. has a leaked first-draft of an honest speech.

There is no crisis.  We have the best health care system in the world, and no one goes without care. The problems, which do need reform, are the result of government policies.  None of the bills would take effect for 4 more years.  So what’s the rush?


4 Comments so far
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HA HA HA HA HA! No one goes without care? Wow. Just, …wow!

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Comment by kgmadman

[…] More:  Once Again, With Bells On. The Same Old Snake Oil. […]

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Pingback by Once Again, With Bells On. The Same Old Snake Oil. | cancer research

Anyone can go to any emergency room in the country and receive care. It is the law.

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Comment by The Elephant's Child




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