Again, it would be almost comical if there were not such dire implications for our present and our future. Some of the stuff out there about the myth of Obama the achiever astound me. He has kept nary of his campaign promises, unless if you count that bit in one of his books where he said he would stand with the Muslims in world crisis, as in the current debacle over the embassies and consulates. Prayers to the families of the fallen. But, one of the biggest myths and slurs out there is the notion of Obama saving medicare and helping healthcare. First, let's talk about that Obamacare thing.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 did nothing to address the core defects of the system: the long-run explosion of Medicare costs as the baby boomers retire, the “fee for service” model that drives health-care inflation, the link from employment to insurance that explains why so many Americans lack coverage, and the excessive costs of the liability insurance that our doctors need to protect them from our lawyers. However, one of Obama's friends and advisers has an idea. This is a person who still has the President's ear, Steven Rattner. He even advocates an idea that was part of the original Obama care: death panels! From a NY Times editorial that ran earlier this month:
"WE need death panels. Well, maybe not death panels, exactly, but unless we start allocating health care resources more prudently — rationing, by its proper name — the exploding cost of Medicare will swamp the federal budget.
Medicare needs to take a cue from Willie Sutton, who reportedly said he robbed banks because that’s where the money was. The big money in Medicare is not to be found in Mr. Ryan’s competition or Mr. Obama’s innovation, but in reducing the cost of treating people in the last year of life, which consumes more than a quarter of the program’s budget.
No one wants to lose an aging parent. And with price out of the equation, it’s natural for patients and their families to try every treatment, regardless of expense or efficacy. But that imposes an enormous societal cost that few other nations have been willing to bear. Many countries whose health care systems are regularly extolled — including Canada, Australia and New Zealand — have systems for rationing care.
In other words, all of you who believed the AARP were wrong. Obama wants death panels. The ACA is but the superstructure of rationing, especially since the idea of death panels was revealed to be part of the original law. Pelosicare was not only a political disaster. Polls consistently showed that only a minority of the public liked the ACA, and it was the main reason why Republicans regained control of the House in 2010. It was also another fiscal snafu. The president pledged that health-care reform would not add a cent to the deficit. But the CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation now estimate that the insurance-coverage provisions of the ACA will have a net cost of close to $1.2 trillion over the 2012–22 period. Not only is the Obama administration robbing Medicare to pay for its new Obamacare entitlement, but Obamacare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) and the regulations being churned out by the Department of Health and Human Services are all about top-down, government mandated health care rationing which will potentially deny seniors the means to pay for life-saving treatments if such treatments are not deemed cost-effective for elderly patients.
Then, there is the theft of 700 billion from medicare. Not only is the Obama administration robbing Medicare to pay for its new Obamacare entitlement, but Obamacare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) and the regulations being churned out by the Department of Health and Human Services are all about top-down, government mandated health care rationing which will potentially deny seniors the means to pay for life-saving treatments if such treatments are not deemed cost-effective for elderly patients.
IPAB is a politically appointed 15-member Medicare payment board with the power to effectively take treatment decisions away from doctors and their patients by making recommendations to deny or reduce Medicare reimbursement for treatments that do not meet their one-size-fits-all cost effectiveness test. Its recommendations for acceptable and unacceptable treatment options that will affect today’s seniors can only be overridden by a super-majority vote or the passage by Congress of its own Medicare plan that meets the same Medicare spending targets. Patients without the means to pay the complete cost themselves of treatments cut off from Medicare funding by bureaucratic decisions will have to go without treatments that may save their lives.
Kathleen Sebelius, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, admitted during her congressional testimony in July 2011 before the health subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee in response to a hypothetical question that, if Congress did not overturn the IPAB bureaucracy’s recommendation for Medicare to reduce its reimbursement payments to seniors for dialysis procedures, seniors may well be left without the means to receive this life-saving treatment.
Libs wrote about how the Romney/Ryan plan would destroy medicare. But, funny, the President himself didn't think so back in 2011. of the Ryan plan as “an entirely legitimate proposal.” Obama recognized that spending for Medicare, Medicaid and other entitlements were “the major driver of our long-term liabilities” and that the right solution deserved “a healthy debate.” But the Obama administration has ducked trying to solve this problem completely. In fact, it is making the problem even worse by sweeping over $700 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare, which will rob today’s seniors of the choices they now have under the current Medicare program.
Ryan has come up with an alternative market-based plan that prevents Medicare from self-destructing because of out-of-control spending, without substituting government mandates and rationing for the choices that are better left to patients, including seniors, and their doctors. The truth is that seniors now on Medicare, as well as those 55 and older, would not be affected at all by Ryan’s proposed Medicare reforms. The reforms would only come into play for younger generations, who would have decades to prepare for their retirement. Younger people would still be able to choose Medicare as it is structured today or they could select among private insurance policies, with premium support provided by the federal government. And that notion of people paying 6000 more? That was in an earlier proposal, and besides, that amount was over the working years of a person's life, not a one time, every year payment. The smears and mischaracterizations would be laughable if not so serious for our country.
I have a grandma who relies on Medicare. I don't want her getting the shaft because Obama wants to fund more government control over all our lives,and turn us into a youth vs. elderly society. I don't want her to suffer getting denied care because some bureaucrat who is unaccountable thinks she can no longer contribute to society. I vote for freedom and real change. And that is NOT a vote for Obama.