Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Democrats Playing Shell Game with Health Proposals

So the Senate Finance Committee headed by Max Baucus (D-MT) passed its healthcare bill out of committee yesterday. It is an onerous proposal, as we detailed a few days ago.

One lone Republican, the feckless Olympia Snowe (R-ME) voted in favor of the bill. In endorsing it, she said:
Is this bill all that I would want? Far from it. Is it all that it can be? No. But when history calls, history calls...

History calls. Right. Baucus said something similar.

So let's make "history" by ruining one of the best healthcare systems in the world. Do any of these politicians understand logic? That was a rhetorical question. They don't. Doing something is not necessarily better than doing nothing. It can make things even worse, and in this case that is guaranteed.

All the politicians in favor of governmental action cite the unsustainable "rising costs" of healthcare. For Americans who pay for their own healthcare, whether directly or through private insurance, this is a legitimate concern. But every piece of legislation under consideration, including this one, forces these same people to pay much more.

But politicians really aren't concerned with the rising costs to us, even though they sell "reform" by pretending to be. When they speak of "rising costs" they are talking about the cost to government!

Meanwhile, the Baucus bill guarantees that quality and availability of healthcare will decline. This is explicitly outlined by inclusion of government appointed healthcare panels (yes, the Death Panels) and implicitly guaranteed by reductions in reimbursements to hospitals and doctors - at current rates already too low. Finally, it includes no effort at malpractice liability reform, which unnecessarily wastes hundreds of billions of dollars each year.

However, this bill is not as bad as it could be. Things will only go downhill from here.

The Senate passed another healthcare bill out of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee this past July. Remember Reagan's famous joke? "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"

Well, Godhelp us.

Treasonous Teddy Kennedy (D-MA) contributed to that bill before becoming too ill to do more damage. But the torch was picked up by fellow corrupt, dissolute leftist Christopher Dodd (D-CT) and HELP Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA), another radical leftist.

What happens now is that Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D-NE), and Senators Baucus, Harkin, Dodd and whatever other co-conspirators are part of the plot will gather in Reid's office. In a front page story yesterday, (As Panel Votes Today, Democrats Look Ahead, Tuesday October 13, 2009) the Washington Post painted a charming picture of the secret dealings to come:

In the Senate, negotiations are shifting from the public forum of the Finance Committee to a more cloistered setting: the seating area in front of the marble fireplace in the office of Majority Leader Harry M. Reid ... Baucus will retreat to Reid's office along with Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D- Conn.) and a handful of top White House officials to meld the finance panel's package with an alternative bill that Dodd shepherded through the Senate health committee in July.

"Cloistered setting..." Right.

Olympia Snowe has harped frequently on her cordial meetings with President Obama to discuss the healthcare issue. But now that she has managed to make this healthcare monstrosity "bi-partisan" do you think she'll be included in these fireside chats? Meanwhile, the folks back in Maine may finally be getting the message that she is betraying them (in addition to the rest of the country.)

But she has competition. Not to be outdone in witlessness, Snowe's fellow senator, Susan Collins has today indicated she is willing to support healthcare "reform" as well. What is the matter with the water in Maine? Has it been tainted by Canadian socialists, or what?

Do you see what the Democrats are doing? Now that the Senate has it's cherished but completely phony "estimate" from CBO claiming "deficit reduction of $81 billion over ten years," a bill excluding the dreaded "public option," and the "bi-partisan" stamp from the mindless senior senator from Maine, it will go about formulating the real bill. This will happen behind closed doors, with little if any opportunity for public review and the mass media will doubtless do their part to keep it quiet.

In the meantime, there are three more healthcare bills circulating in the House of Representatives, every one even more radical than the Baucus travesty. These will eventually be reconciled, in similar secret fashion, with whatever mess comes out of combining the two Senate bills.

Leftists in government created a crisis in healthcare to advance their agenda. The end goal is the complete takeover of the healthcare industry by the federal government. They will get what they really want, control, and we the people will suffer incalculably. Hospitals will close their doors, healtcare providers will go out of business, and future healthcare practitioners will seek other, more promising professions. We will pay more and face long lines for inferior service, or get no service at all, as every other nation that went this way has experienced.

Change only a socialist could dream about - soon to be reality for the United States. God save us!