Election 2014: GOP Has Midterm Engagement Advantage
**Posted by Phineas
That’s not an exact quote, but a paraphrasing what the former Vermont governor and 2004 presidential flame-out said in a Wall St. Journal article yesterday. Here’s the money quote:
One major problem is the so-called Independent Payment Advisory Board. The IPAB is essentially a health-care rationing body. By setting doctor reimbursement rates for Medicare and determining which procedures and drugs will be covered and at what price, the IPAB will be able to stop certain treatments its members do not favor by simply setting rates to levels where no doctor or hospital will perform them.
There does have to be control of costs in our health-care system. However, rate setting—the essential mechanism of the IPAB—has a 40-year track record of failure. What ends up happening in these schemes (which many states including my home state of Vermont have implemented with virtually no long-term effect on costs) is that patients and physicians get aggravated because bureaucrats in either the private or public sector are making medical decisions without knowing the patients. Most important, once again, these kinds of schemes do not control costs. The medical system simply becomes more bureaucratic.
When Palin made her first comments about “death panels,” (see also here and here) she was widely derided by the Left and the Establishment Right. And yet now we have a major figure on the left wing of the Democratic Party, a man known to favor some form of nationalized medicine, in effect saying she was right all along, because rationed medical care means having to deny it. In other words, IPAB will choose who gets what treatment, who lives and who dies, taking that decision away from the doctor and his patient.
I’d call that a “death panel.”
Now, Howard still favors way too much government intervention in health care, but I’d call this progress. He’s yet another important voice on the Left saying this is a looming train wreck. With many on the Right calling for defunding Obamacare, we may yet be able to form a coalition to at least suspend the implementation of this anti-constitutional monstrosity.
Meanwhile, Sarah Palin was right. Too bad more people in power didn’t listen to her way back then.
(Crossposted at Public Secrets)