Sarah Murnaghan, a 10-year-old girl with Cystic Fibrosis, is expected to go home this week. If a judge did not intervene, Murnaghan would likely not be alive today, as physicians gave the little girl “weeks to live,” as reported by John Hayward of Human Events.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius famously told Rep. Lou Barletta during a House hearing, “I would suggest, sir, that, again, this is an incredibly agonizing situation where someone lives and someone dies.” [Emphasis added] Would Sebelius have had the same opinion if President Obama’s child was sick?
Sarah became the poster child for how bureaucratic rules can interfere with decisions that should be made between a doctor and patient. The phrase made famous by Sarah Palin, “Death Panels,” is still laughed off as a “myth,” despite massive amounts of evidence to the contrary.
An editorial published today in the Daily Herald written by “activist” Joni Lindgren, asks “Why is the death panel myth so hard to shake?” She says that the reason people believe in death panels under ObamaCare is likely because “most people have a very poor understanding of the complex law” and because the law “calls for the establishment of a 15-member committee called the independent payment advisory board (or IPAB).”
This board will consist of independent health care experts who are forbidden, by law, from proposing changes that will affect Medicare coverage or quality, nor will they be allowed to ‘ration’ health care!
Despite Lindgren’s assertion, there are many in academia, particularly in the field of bioethics, who accept rationing as an inevitability. Renowned bioethicist Daniel Callahan, who founded the Hastings Center, for example, said in a frightening piece last year:
It is not, however, easy to come up with a good euphemism for rationing, though ‘setting limits’ and ‘resource allocation’ are the common code words. The argument, in short, is not whether rationing will be necessary — that is taken for granted — but how prudently to talk about it in the public square. [Emphasis added]
Code words. Euphemisms. Nudging.
Callahan also explained how the cleansing of language is how abortion came to be accepted.
Clearly, many of my fellow advocates sought euphemisms for the actual procedure, any phrase or word that would avoid acknowledging that abortion is the outright killing of fetuses, often by chopping them up, crushing their skulls, and otherwise destroying them. Better to talk about ’emptying the uterine content’ or ‘terminating pregnancy.’ A recent and notable addition to the list is to speak not of infanticide but of ‘post-birth abortion.’ [Emphasis added]
Prominent bioethicist Peter Singer explains how the terms become “progressively sanitized”:
Priority setting was called ‘rationing’ 20 years ago, and ‘resource allocation’ 10 years ago and will be called ‘sustainability’ 10 years from now, as our language about this problem becomes progressively sanitized.
Another prominent bioethicist, Arthur Caplan said:
If health care is recognized as a right, then the details of how to achieve affordable health insurance reform will follow. If it is not, then efforts to move reform forward will simply die under the weight of nitpicking, fear-mongering, sloganeering, and the invocation of details as obstructions to change.
What a coincidence! President Obama said in a weekly address this month that health insurance was a “right.” Do you really think that President Obama’s statement was not calculated? Everything this administration does is designed to “nudge” you. A recent example is the Behavioral Insights Team, or, the “nudge squad; a “White House experiment in finding subtle ways to get citizens to change their behavior,” as reported last month by MSN.
— The White House (@whitehouse) August 17, 2013
According to an essay in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM):
The [IPAB] panel will be charged with ensuring that Medicare expenses stay within limits set by the healthcare reform law, and must also recommend to Congress how to control healthcare costs.
Sounds like rationing to me.
According to the Committee on Ways and Means:
The Democrats chose not to define what they meant by ‘ration,’ and such a definition does not appear anywhere in the Medicare statute. So, rationing is in the eye of the IPAB beholder. IPAB would be free to cut reimbursement rates for procedures and services that IPAB deems ‘unnecessary’ to levels so low that no physician would provide the care.
Obama’s former Director of the Office of Management and Budget, Peter Orszag said regarding the IPAB:
This institution could prove to be far more important to the future of our fiscal health than, for example, the Congressional Budget Office. It has an enormous amount of potential power. [Emphasis added]
Remember, Affordable Care Act has survived a Supreme Court ruling and a re-election campaign.
The Supreme Court also ruled that Japanese Internment Camps were constitutional. The Supreme Court is not infallible.
It is this author’s humble opinion that Lindgren may want to do a bit of research. Surely, she or someone in her family will someday get sick. Is she prominent enough to be saved? This law will ensure that those without financial means will be forced to accept the same national rules that applied to people like Sarah Murnaghan.
For more proof that death panels are very real, please read my article here.
Murnaghan had people in high places rooting for her, but will you?
Follow Renee Nal on Twitter @ReneeNal and Facebook. Check out her news and political commentary on Tavern Keepers, Gather and the Examiner for news you won’t find in the mainstream media. Renee is also a guest blogger for the Shire Blog.