Who knows what long-term effects we'll see from the so-called Affordable Care Act, unless and until it dies a well-deserved demise, but at least one repercussion has become obvious -- borderline hysteria among liberals in media.
An example of this could be heard on Thom Hartmann's radio show yesterday when he was complaining about the conservative group FreedomWorks' opposition to Obamacare. (Audio after the jump)
After playing a new anti-Obamacare radio ad from the group (played by Hartmann on his show, his snark audible in the background), Hartmann described FreedomWorks and its former chief, Dick Armey, along with two of its corporate backers, Charles and David Koch, as "stone-cold killers" (audio) --
So poor Julie (referring to a woman in the ad), they've got her to go on radio nationwide and say she's got a son with a pre-existing condition and she's worried about Obamacare. Now Obamacare prevents the insurance companies from kicking her kid off the insurance policy. And then she says, and how am I going to do this with higher premiums and a lower paycheck? Well, you're not going to have either. You're going to have lower premiums and a higher paycheck. So, she and FreedomWorks are promulgating lies. Now why would they do that? Well, she probably did it 'cause she was paid and she doesn't know better. But FreedomWorks certainly knows better. The reason they're doing it is they're trying to prevent young people from signing up so that Obamacare will fail. And in the process of preventing those young people from signing up, they are causing people to die. These people are stone-cold killers. ... Dick Armey, the Koch brothers, the funders of this campaign to kill Obamacare are stone-cold killers.
That allegedly being the case, just about anything would be considered fair game to stop them, according to the dictates of liberal logic. All crimes are justified when you are trying to save the world.
I'm curious as to whether Hartmann is aware that one of Obamacare's more prominent recent critics is former Vermont governor and 2004 Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean. In a July 28 op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Dean criticized Obamacare's creation of an "Independent Payment Advisory Board," in language similar to that used by Sarah Palin when she labeled the board a "death panel" --
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.
... which was the underlying rationale for Obamacare all along -- job creation for bureaucrats and political appointees, preferably those who helped elect Democrats.
Here's how The American Spectator's David Catron described the IPAB in April 2011 --
Its sole purpose is to cut funding for some health care services seniors now take for granted. And those cuts will kill people.
Whether IPAB members will be emotionless and "stone cold" when they make those cuts remains to be seen, but rest assured Hartmann won't be criticizing them when they do.