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Heavy-Handed Politics

"€œGod willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world
without the United States and Zionism."€ -- Iran President Ahmadi-Nejad

Friday, June 19, 2009

ON HEALTHCARE

While speaking to the American Medical Association, President B. H. Obama was being a tad disingenuous when he told them:
"Let me also address an illegitimate concern that's being put forward by those who are claiming a public option is somehow a Trojan Horse for a single-payer system. I'll be honest: There are countries where a single-payer system works pretty well. But I believe -- and I've taken some flak from members of my own party for this belief -- that it's important for our efforts to build on our traditions here in the United States. So when you hear the naysayers claim that I'm trying to bring about government-run health care, know this: They're not telling the truth."
Washington Post columnist Robert Samuelson commented on BHO's speech to the AMA with this characterization:
"It's hard to know whether President Obama's health care 'reform' is naive, hypocritical or simply dishonest. Probably all three. The president keeps saying it's imperative to control runaway health spending. He's right. The trouble is that what's being promoted as health care 'reform' almost certainly won't suppress spending and, quite probably, will do the opposite."
Dr. William Campbell Douglass II writes about Obama's health plan and notes the AMA'S opposition to it:
This could be a stormy summer if the debate over Obama's health care plan hits Congress in the coming weeks. As it is, battle lines are already being drawn up and salvos are being fired by both sides. And not just by Republicans and Democrats: recently the American Medical Association (AMA) weighed in on the latest details of Obama's so-called "public insurance plan"... and they're against it.

In spite of the fact that the AMA is the country's largest physician's group, it doesn't have as much political pull as it used to have in the old days, but there's no doubt that the organization's non-endorsement of the Obama plan will (thankfully) make it more difficult to pass.

It's probably tough to tell from reading the paper or watching the TV news these days, but there are actually people out there who know more than President Obama. And the AMA's opposition to Obama's health care plan is based on something that the President has very little of: experience.

The Obama Administration has just begun to leak the specifics of the healthcare plan, and after seeing the initial broad strokes, the AMA has concluded that health care should still be "provided through private markets as they are currently."

"The introduction of a new public plan threatens to restrict patient choice by driving out private insurers, which currently provide coverage for nearly 70 percent of Americans," the AMA said in comments submitted to the Senate Finance Committee.

And it's true: the end result of the Obama proposals would be to tear down the current health care system of private health that's taken care of the majority of our nation's 350 million people... all so we can be sure that the 10 million or so of the population (and that's being generous) that don't have insurance can be cared for -- at massive expense to the taxpayer.

All of these debates are going to heat up, and Obama is going to make his case for the plan at an address to the AMA in Chicago. But finally, it's not just talk radio pundits and the odd Republican pointing out the obvious flaws in the Obama plan, but the doctors themselves -- the people who will be at the sharp end should this plan come to pass.

One bone of contention is government mandated physician participation. The government would strong-arm doctors into accepting the plan by requiring doctors who currently accept Medicare patients to be a part of the new public health plan.

The AMA has said that it won't back a plan that mandates physician participation since "many physicians and providers may not have the capability to accept the influx of new patients that could result from such a mandate." Which, of course, makes sense: while the government plan will expand coverage, it has no provisions for expanding the infrastructure or size of the current healthcare industry. The result will surely be system overload virtually overnight.

Clearly, we're headed for a showdown. And unfortunately, I think that it will be the AMA and doctors that blink first -- or will be forced to blink. After all, the doctors can hardly wage a scorched earth political campaign against the same Democrats whose help they need to increase the fees for Medicare. So of course, the true power rests not in the hands of the people, but the government. And bigger government is always part of Obama's grand plan.


1 Comments:

  • This is just one more reminder that the only real way to keep our economy strong is not by raising taxes, but by keeping taxes low, fair and simple.

    We need to take action and contact our legislators and sign petitions like the ones the U.S. Chamber of Commerce backs (here).

    By Blogger Janet Brown, at 12:25 PM  

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