Sunday, August 9, 2009

ObamaCare and the Elderly: Don't Entrust 'Sandmen' Technocrats With Deathly Medical Directorate Authority

Here's Newt Gingrich speaking on ObamaCare's end-of-life provisions for the elderly:

You're asking us to trust turning power over to the government, when there clearly are people in America who believe in -- in establishing euthanasia, including selective standards.
I've read the key passage of the bill, to which George Stephanopolous is referring; and I wrote about it last night, see "End of Life: ObamaCare and the Elderly." The entry triggered a lively discussion, and Dr. Ahmadinejad Chavez Biobrain weighed in with a subsequent post, "In Defense of Palin's Death Panel." At one point, Dr. Biobrain claims that " Donald's solid ground' just crumbled out from beneath him."

Actually, not so fast. The "death panel" terminology is not mine. Yet, I do know that President Obama is indifferent to the beauty and sanctity of life (he's
President Infanticide, remember). And the legislation is clear: It requires "orders" for end of life decisions, a choice of language which is totally at odds with traditionally individualistic "patient's directives" terminology - and which is thus typically authoritarian in tone. That is fact, not opinion. It's explicitly set forth as such in the key sections of the House bill I cited last night. And why "orders"? Well, the Democrats hate private autonomy and personal liberty. It's no wonder that Newt Gingrich argues that President Obama is "asking us to decide that we believe that the government is to be trusted." I don't trust President Obama. He's a liar and a sneak, and he's gathering information on his political enemies. Perhaps one of those enemy's parents or grandparents might not be approved for some life-sustaining medical treatment. Of course, it's not a political decision, so the administration and the Democratic majority will have plausible deniability. It's a technocratic decision, which will be carried out by the government's "Sandmen" ObamaCare technocrats empowered with life-and-death authority to "order" treatment limitations for the elderly. Only a hard left radical like the not-a-real-doctor-who-posts-cowardly-under-a-pseudonym Dr. Ahmadinejad Chavez Biobrain would defend this monstrosity of Democratic big-government neo-Stalinism.

Dr. Biobrain has yet to prevail in debating me, although he's a glutton for punishment. I've been trying to ignore him lately, though, disgusted as I am with his recent outburst of unspeakable anti-Semitism. It really crosses a line.

In any case, check some other sources for reference.

* Betsy McCaughey, "DEADLY DOCTORS: O ADVISERS WANT TO RATION CARE". McCaughey writes of Ezekiel Emanuel, President Obama's health adviser at OMB and an Obama point-man at the Federal Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research:

Emanuel ... believes that "communitarianism" should guide decisions on who gets care. He says medical care should be reserved for the non-disabled, not given to those "who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens . . . An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia" (Hastings Center Report, Nov.-Dec. '96).

Translation: Don't give much care to a grandmother with Parkinson's or a child with cerebral palsy.

He explicitly defends discrimination against older patients: "Unlike allocation by sex or race, allocation by age is not invidious discrimination; every person lives through different life stages rather than being a single age. Even if 25-year-olds receive priority over 65-year-olds, everyone who is 65 years now was previously 25 years" (Lancet, Jan. 31).
* Also, the Heritage Foundation, "Obamacare: One Pill, Two Pill, Red Pill, Blue Pill":

Who Makes Medical Decisions? What is the right medical treatment and should bureaucrats determine what Americans can or cannot have? While the House and Senate language is vague, amendments offered in House and Senate committees to block government rationing of care were routinely defeated. Cost or a federal health board could be the deciding factors. President Obama himself admitted this when he said, "Maybe you're better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller," when asked about an elderly woman who needed a pacemaker.
* The Washington Post, "The Health-Care Sacrifice: What President Obama Needs to Tell the Public About the Cost of Reform"
Mr. Obama's soothing bedside manner masks the reality that getting health costs under control will require making difficult choices about what procedures and medications to cover. It will require saying no, or having the patient pay more, at times when the extra expense is not justified by the marginal improvement in care.
See also my previous entry, "Obama's Health Plan Will Succeed (At Getting People to Die." Faster)."

Hat Tip: Hot Air, "
We Have Seen the “Death Panel,” And You Are On It."


Thingumbobesquire said...

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Obama's top advisor on the healthcare overhaul, says he opposes euthanasia. But when you read his actual writings it is clear that he thinks some lives have more value than others. For example, the elderly have less value because they have less years of productivity left. This logic is absolutely consistent with the idea of useless eaters propagated by Dr. Josef Mengele's Nazis. Now who is obfuscating whom?

Dennis said...

The more someone else pays for your healthcare the less control you have of your own healthcare decisions. The real scary thing is that no matter how well intentioned this may be once the broad outlines are passed then it will go to a group of unelected bureaucrats to crete the rules and guidelines.
If the IRS is any example, then we have a great deal to worry about. There is probably not a working day when the IRS is making changes, much of it driven by politics, to existing law. If the IRS has this much trouble interpreting the law think about how many people are going to die while another government agency determines what, who, how, when and where you can get coverage.
The government is rules and not compassion. Compassion happens between individuals. Next time you what compassion try getting it from the any government agency.
The sad part is that this is NOT well intentioned. Consider that two of the programs with the greatest future outlays will be Social Security and Government sponsored healthcare. Who are the beneficiaries, senior citizens. What better way to balance the budget than on the backs of old people.
No matter how much they protest they will be denied essential services because the are a financial consideration and easy to prey on.
Just think if you are tasked with saving money to spend somewhere else what better group to get rid of by hook or by crook. Few retirements to pay and even less Social Security.
Hey, what the HELL are those damned old people any way? And just think of the fun deciding who is old and who is not. It fits perfect with deciding who is rich and who is not, though those considered rich are being chosen at a lower threshold.

PRH said...

Obummer and Peelowsi are the American Death Panel....

PRH, proud to be a member of the Right Wing Mob.

repsac3 said...

Keep repeating it, Thing (& Dr. Douglas, as well)... It doesn't become any more true the 30th time you say it than it was the third...

It's about deciding between two or more possible heart transplant recipients, when you only have one heart to transplant. There are numerous references to organ transplants and other acute situations where there's one (doctor, organ, piece of equipment) and two or more patients who will likely die if they don't get the scarce resource in question.

These bioethical decisions take place in hospitals frequently, and as a result, somebody lives, while someone else dies.

You cannot cite ANYTHING that supports your warped reading suggesting that Dr. Emanuel is advocating about old folks in general or Nazi thinking in particular (unless you believe that all doctors who make such decisions about organ transplants are all like Nazis, which would make you a really sick & twisted individual.)

Doctor Biobrain said...

First off, I understand that "death panel" wasn't your terminology. That was allllll Palin. But you were the one who said she was on "solid ground" by referencing two bloggers who said that nothing in her statement corresponded with anything Obama is doing. Yes, they defended her, but only by rewriting her entire statement into something less crazy.

As for "trusting the government," millions of elderly people trust the government to run Medicare and think it's so good that they're scared Obama will screw it up. But it's not the government they fear, but change. They trust the government so much that they don't want anything changed. And the other reason they're scared is because you people keep scaring them with lies about rationed care which aren't based in any reality.

And no, the legislation does NOT "require" end-of-life orders. It is a voluntary thing between a doctor and his patient, and the only reason the government is involved is because they're now going to pay for it. And these "orders" are exactly what you mean by "patient directives." They're synonymous. These is straight-forward legislation that explains what doctors need to do to be paid for providing much needed counseling on end-of-life orders. And as you quoted, that includes full treatment.

And, Sandmen, Donald? Sandmen? A fictional book. That's your evidence of a death panel? I clicked on the link because I expected to see something about Obama's policy limiting care. But instead, I see a messageboard about Logan's Run. Stunning. Simply stunning.

But no, there is nothing in the legislation to suggest that we will ration care, even if one of Obama's advisers wrote a paper discussing the principles of how to allocate resources when medical care is scarce. That paper had nothing to do with Obama's plan and Dr. Emanuel supports full healthcare for everyone, including old people. So you don't need to worry about the "Sandmen" killing you off now that you're over thirty. Now I guess you can sleep with the light off again.

And one last thing: Palin referenced her son Trig standing before this "death panel." Yet you only mentioned end-of-life orders, which has nothing to do with babies being denied health care. As I said, even YOU aren't willing to defend what she actually wrote.

And FYI, if you expect me to rebut something you wrote, it'd help if I knew about it.

Thingumbobesquire said...

Let's see no rationing in there? Don't I remember Obama talking about his Grandmother not really needing a hip replacement at her stage of illness? Nice talking point, wonder where he got that kind of guidance? Why don't we ration life support for AIG and Goldman Sachs?

Doctor Biobrain said...

Thingumbo, are you actually suggesting that the enforcement of this legislation will be based upon a response Obama gave to a question, rather than the actual words in the legislation? Call me crazy, but I'm fairly certain that's not how our system works.

Whether or not Obama once said his grandmother didn't need a hip replacement, there is STILL nothing in the legislation about rationing care.

Doctor Biobrain said...

Alright Donald, I just obliterated your rant here against Obama's technocratic "Sandmen." Seriously, you make this stuff too easy.
Conservatives Fear the Sandmen

It's a long post, so I'll just tell you the big surprise: The legislation REPEATEDLY uses the word "directive" in it, and you were quoting from the wrong section. Oh, and the proper term is "advance directive" not "patient directive," though your term is also used by people. As it turns out, the "orders" you found to be so authoritarian are part of the "advance directives" doctors are paid to assist people with. And none of it has to do with euthanasia and patients are the ones who write the orders; not doctors or the government.

But of course, you KNEW that, as you've read the bill and weren't just repeating what you were told. I guess you just forgot. Just as you may have forgotten that Logan's Run is a fictional book and not an add-on to the bill. Anyway, I'm already relishing the idea of you reading my post and burning in anger at not having any substantive reply to make. I totally skunked you yet again and I'm sure your only reply will be to insult me again and quote somebody who agrees with you.

Better conservatives, please!