Today’s must-read on health care is Charles Krauthamer’s piece. First the good news:
“Obamacare Version 1.0 is dead. The 1,000-page monstrosity that emerged in various editions from Congress was done in by widespread national revulsion not just at its expense and intrusiveness but also at the mendacity with which it is being sold. You don’t need a PhD to see that the promise to expand coverage and reduce costs is a crude deception, or that cutting $500 billion from Medicare without affecting care is a fiction.”
The bad news is that through a series of maneuvers we could end up with government healthcare “by proxy:”
“And because it’s proxy, and because it will guarantee access to (supposedly) private health insurance — something that enjoys considerable Republican support — it will pass with wide bipartisan backing and give Obama a resounding political victory.
“Isn’t there a catch? Of course there is. This scheme is the ultimate bait-and-switch. The pleasure comes now, the pain later. Government-subsidized universal and virtually unlimited coverage will vastly compound already out-of-control government spending on health care. The financial and budgetary consequences will be catastrophic.
“However, they will not appear immediately. And when they do, the only solution will be rationing. That’s when the liberals will give the FCCCER regulatory power and give you end-of-life counseling.
“But by then, resistance will be feeble. Why? Because at that point the only remaining option will be to give up the benefits we will have become accustomed to. Once granted, guaranteed universal health care is not relinquished. Look at Canada. Look at Britain. They got hooked; now they ration. So will we.”
Anyone who believes that the health care battle is won needs to wake up: This is not something that Obama will drop. He regards it as the cornerstone of radical change.
We have only one hope to fend off socialized medicine (are we allowed to use that term yet?)—ourselves. Nobody understands that better than the columnist Nat Hentoff:
“Startlingly — and wholly involuntarily — President Obama is teaching us that, as Thomas Jefferson often said, ‘the people are the ultimate guardians of their own liberty.’ The growing resistance to the president’s goal of state-controlled health care is moving more of us to act on our constitutional power to protect our quintessential individual liberty — to decide for ourselves how long we are going to stay on this Earth.
”The reverberating town-hall meetings are a legacy of the 1765 meeting in Boston where Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty organized against King George III and, not having access to the Internet, later started the Committees of Correspondence that alerted all the colonists to insistent royal threats to their personal liberties. During a secret meeting in Virginia, Jefferson helped organize such a committee in his state.”