Dems' August Nightmare: Get Me A Sense of Absurdity And Make It Snappy!

Dems' August Nightmare: Get Me A Sense of Absurdity And Make It Snappy!

Dems' August Nightmare: Get Me A Sense of Absurdity And Make It Snappy!

A mostly political weblog.
Aug. 4 2009 6:56 PM

Dems' August Nightmare: Get Me A Sense of Absurdity And Make It Snappy!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009  

Jonathan Alter, pretending he's for the health care status quo to show how absurd that is , touches on the reason why I'm also attracted to government-run health care: because it will be less stingy with treatments and procedures than private insurers.

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Speaking of fair, it seems fair to me that cost-cutting bureaucrats at the insurance companies—not doctors—decide what's reimbursable. After all, the insurance companies know best. 

The problem, of course, is that if the government won't second guess your doctor in the name of saving money, then how is it going to "bend the cost curve" as Obama promises it will? Won't more treatments cost, you know, more? At the very least, Alter's desire sits uncomfortably with Obama's cost-cutting rationale. And it sits very uncomfortably with Obama's concrete proposal to establish a commission of cost-cutting bureaucrats-- government bureaucrats rather than private ones--whose purpose is precisely to "decide what's reimbursable" even if your doctor might disagree. ... I suppose you could argue that Obama's expert cost-cutters will be so brilliant that you'll get all the treatments the evil insurance companies would deny you and be denied only treatments--duplicative X-rays, etc.-- you really wouldn't want anyway, with the net result of a huge cost savings. That seems a tough sell, though. ... [ You have better solution?-ed The solution is to not expect pretend that health care security will save money.] ... 11:30 P.M.

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If the Cash for Clunkers program was insidiously rigged to steer people toward SUV purchases , it doesn't seem to be working . Seven of the top 10 cars purchased are small sedans. One is a midsized sedan. One is the Ford Escape, a small SUV. The 10th is the Dodge Caliber, which is a sedan pretending it's sorta kinda an SUV. ..   4:05 P.M.

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Is it possible that Dem politicians are in for an August of furious town hall feedback  so brutal that it all becomes absurd and breeds a grim, amused fatalism that actually steels them to proceed on health care? Just asking. ... If you're going to die, might as well die having enacted universal health care. ... Remember how Tom DeLay and the GOP reacted to their drubbing at the polls in 1998 on the impeachment issue? (They went ahead and impeached.) ... 4:04 P.M.

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