How can President Obama possibly get away with spouting so many shameless falsehoods to the entire nation?
President Obama told the nation last Wednesday night:
Some of people’s concerns have grown out of bogus claims spread by those whose only agenda is to kill reform at any cost. The best example is the claim made not just by radio and cable talk show hosts, but by prominent politicians, that we plan to set up panels of bureaucrats with the power to kill off senior citizens. Now such a charge would be laughable if it weren’t so cynical and irresponsible. It’s a lie, plain and simple.
The prominent politician who first complained about the death panels in the Obama health plan was Sarah Palin. Later on CNN, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs was asked, “You pull out the dictionary, and the person who tells a lie is a liar. Does the President think Sarah Palin is a liar?” Gibbs answered:
I think that for whatever reason despite many media outlets saying what Sarah Palin said was untrue, she continued to say it. I’ll let Webster define what one calls her. I think in the absence of fact sometimes what happens is we fill the void with stuff that quite frankly isn’t true….It’s obvious and true there aren’t death panels.
But people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. Calling Sarah Palin a liar was most unfortunate given the speech on health care Barack Obama gave last Wednesday night. In that speech, President Obama accused his critics of spreading “misinformation” and “bogus claims,” of “demagoguery and distortion,” and of “scare tactics” instead of honest debate. But all of that was most prominently featured in his own speech.
Obama’s Calculated Deception
President Obama said that his health overhaul plan includes no Medicare cuts, telling seniors: “[D]on’t pay attention to those scary stories about how your benefits will be cut.” He continued, “The only thing this plan would eliminate is the…unwarranted subsidies in Medicare that go to insurance companies — subsidies that do everything to pad their profits but don’t improve the care of seniors.”
What Obama is talking about here is $177 billion in cuts for Medicare Advantage — the private insurance options that almost one-fourth of seniors have chosen for their coverage under Medicare. Republicans enacted this choice for seniors, and close to 10 million retirees have chosen one of these private insurance options because they get better benefits from it than from standard Medicare.
At a minimum, Obama’s cuts will force these plans to cut back on their benefits for seniors. Or the Medicare Advantage plans may just go out of business altogether, dumping all the seniors who have made that choice because they are getting a better deal. Does Obama’s quote above regarding this component of his health plan honestly explain to you what is involved? Or does it seem calculated to deceive you?
Obama’s health overhaul plan also includes cuts of “hundreds of billions of dollars in waste and fraud” in Medicare. What Obama is talking about here is over $300 billion in additional Medicare cuts, for a total of $500 billion, for payments to doctors and hospitals. In response, doctors and hospitals will cut back on the services and care they provide to seniors. This is the beginning of the health care rationing in the Obama plan. Calling this just cuts in “waste and fraud” is again a calculated deception.
Obama promises seniors in his speech “not a dollar of the Medicare trust fund will be used to pay for this plan.” But what Obama doesn’t tell you is that only Medicare payroll taxes are devoted to the Medicare trust fund. Medicare is largely financed in addition by general revenues, and Medicare cuts can provide general revenue savings that do not involve taking money out of the Medicare trust fund. The general revenue savings just don’t have to be put into the trust fund in the first place. Again, does Obama’s discussion of this sound like calculated deception?
Obama even endorses in the speech the idea for an Independent Medicare Advisory Council, saying, “And we will also create an independent commission of doctors and medical experts charged with identifying more waste [in Medicare] in the years ahead.” Sarah Palin accurately explained what that is in a September 9 article in the Wall Street Journal, writing that such a commission would be
an unelected, largely unaccountable group of experts charged with containing Medicare costs. In an interview with the New York Times in April, the President suggested that such a group, working outside of ‘normal political channels,’ should guide decisions regarding that “huge driver of cost… the chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives.”
In other words, this unelected, unaccountable commission operating outside of “normal political channels” would have the power to adopt still more Medicare cuts, focused especially on the most sick and those toward the end of their lives. Palin concludes:
Given such statements, is it any wonder that many of the sick and elderly are concerned that the Democrats’ proposals will ultimately lead to rationing of their health care by — dare I say it — death panels? Establishment voices dismissed that phrase, but it rang true for many Americans.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?