By Dave Andrusko
I know I could write this just about every time I carefully read what pro-abortionists say, but, honestly, you can’t make this stuff up. Broadly speaking, I mean by this two things.
First, what psychologists would call projection. They attribute to us the very behavior that every word out of their mouth demonstrates is theirs.
Second, in mocking conspiracies they insist WE believe in, they roll out conspiracies of their own that are so out of touch with reality you have to feel sorry for them. This often happens of course, in adjoining paragraphs.
You can’t make this stuff up.
Take “Stoking Fire: Anti-Choice Resurrect ‘Death Panel’ Claims.” That’s actually a small part of what I want to address, but because Eleanor J. Bader, writing at RhRealityCheck.org, makes a big deal out of it, let’s tackle it.
To be clear the issue is not whether one likes or dislikes the particular moniker “death panel.” The question is, as you look at ObamaCare, are their provisions in the “Affordable Health Care Act” that put patients’ lives at risk because of ObamaCare’s determination to cut health care spending. Here’s three very useful paragraphs from NRLC’s Robert Powell Center for Medical Ethics. (The “board” is the unelected 18-member Independent Payment Advisory Board—IPAB– that’s been given sweeping powers to limit what people are allowed to spend for health care.)
“As documented with specific quotes from the legislation, the Obama Health Care Law specifically directs the board to make ‘recommendations to slow the growth in national health expenditures- for private–not just governmentally funded–dollars devoted to health care. These recommendations are supposed to limit what ordinary citizens and their health insurance coverage can pay for medical treatment to force it below the rate of medical inflation.
“To implement these recommendations, the federal Department of Health and Human Services is empowered to impose so-called ‘quality’ and ‘efficiency’ measures on health care providers. Doctors who violate a ‘quality’ standard by prescribing more life-saving medical treatment than it permits will be disqualified from contracting with any of the health insurance plans that individual Americans, under the Obama Health Care Law, will be mandated to purchase. Few doctors would be able to remain in practice if subjected to that penalty.
“This means that treatment that a doctor and patient deem advisable to save that patient’s life or preserve or improve the patient’s health, but which exceeds the standard imposed by the government, will be denied even if the patient is willing and able to pay for it.’ (Emphasis mine.)
Back to Bader and her chortling first couple of paragraphs:
“Anti-choice groups recently charged that the imposition of the Affordable Care Act has brought death panels to U.S. soil. [Addressed above.] It’s not the first time the right wing has imagined this lurking menace.
“Since the dawn of the anti-choice movement more than 40 years ago, its leaders have linked abortion, euthanasia, and infanticide. As Human Life International (HLI) and other anti-choice groups see it, abortion leads to euthanasia as day leads to night. Furthermore, they see infanticide as a form of euthanasia, and have called it the bridge between the two.”
Bader then spends most of her essay misstating the criticisms of ObamaCare/Obama Health Care Law/Affordable Health Care Act (three names for the same thing) before doubling back to her haughty dismissal of the links between abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia. Suffice it to say she either hasn’t read what ObamaCare empowers the IPAB to do or simply refuses to believe that it can mean what it so plainly DOES mean: slowing not only on what the government can spent (particularly Medicare) but capping what YOU can spend out of your OWN (or your insurance company’s) money.
Bader makes it sound as if ignoring the IPAB’s recommended spending cuts will be a piece of cake. But as the New York Times’ Robert Pear observed
“Under the law, spending cuts recommended by the presidentially appointed [IPAB] panel would take effect automatically unless Congress voted to block or change them. In general, federal courts could not review actions to carry out the board’s recommendations.”
One other thought (it would require a post four times as long as Bader’s to address all the confusions). She quotes one pro-life source as saying that
“[A] society that permits or legalizes euthanasia and assisted suicide for the few, embarks on a path leading inexorably to permissive mercy killing of the many.”
This, of course, is so silly to Bader it barely warrants a rebuttal. So who does she quote as proving that there is no slippery slope? Compassion & Choices—formerly, and more accurately known, as the Hemlock Society. (As Wesley Smith has duly noted, “C & C’s ambition is to become the Planned Parenthood of death, complete with government funding.”)
C&C’s leader offers up one of those famously euphemistic-drenched explanations of what they are in favor of, which hide everything. To quote Smith again, referring to “aid in dying” [as opposed to suicide or assisted suicide] the euthanasia movement’s latest euphemistic phrase:
“According to C&C, when a terminally ill patient swallows an intentionally prescribed lethal overdose of barbiturates, it isn’t really suicide. Why? Because the word ‘suicide’ has negative connotations, and C&C wants people to feel positive about some self-killings.”
And who is at the forefront of the opposition to physician-assisted suicide? The disability rights movement. They know how the “right” to be “put of your misery” quickly morphs into the “right” of others to make that decision for the disabled. And the elderly. And the injured newborn.
And of course Bader pooh poohs what is happening in Belgium and the Netherlands where the range of people whose lives are taken involuntary grows annually and where euthanasia deaths are routinely not reported. Those of us who do—well, that’s prima facie evidence of our “extremism.”
I don’t believe in conspiracies. However I do fervently believe that when you remove the bulwarks that protect the weak from the strong, you should expect the worse.