Yesterday the Senate advanced the stimulus bill (61-36). I again assert that there is no way that they have read the entire bill or have full knowledge of what is in there. I don't just mean the ones that voted for it either; for those that voted against it, I would suggest that they at least cracked the seal on it long enough to know that there is massive unnecessary spending in the bill that is not stimulating in nature. I think the bottom line is, and what Sen. David Vitter said this morning, is that most Republicans support a bill do to something. We know that something must be done. We also would support meaningful infrastructure spending such as roads and bridges. But that is not the case with this bill. This is a bad bill.
Part of what is bad about this bill would be all the things hidden in it. Betsy McCaughey has an excellent analysis of the upcoming socialistic nature of our health care system imbedded in the bill (my words, not hers). We know that Obama believes health care records should now be electronic and this is not necessarily a bad thing except for the fact that this bill establishes the position of a National Coordinator who will now oversee and moniter your treatment in order to be sure it is cost effective. Sounds like the "Handicapper General" in Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron" - that was the person who got to decide what "handicaps" you had to wear in order to make you Average and bring you down to the same level as everyone else.
McCaughey asserts that much of the health care provisioning in this bill is from Daschle. She writes:
One new bureaucracy, the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, will monitor treatments to make sure your doctor is doing what the federal government deems appropriate and cost effective. The goal is to reduce costs and “guide” your doctor’s decisions (442, 446). These provisions in the stimulus bill are virtually identical to what Daschle prescribed in his 2008 book, “Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis.” According to Daschle, doctors have to give up autonomy and “learn to operate less like solo practitioners.”
The page numbers in the above quote refer to HR1 which you can read if you go the Read the Stimulus site. It's even searchable so you can type whatever you're looking for into the search bar and read this for yourself. I don't know about you, but I don't want the federal government as an overseer to my health care. Even more frightening, what this leads to, as it has in other socialistic countries, is that the elderly are the ones who pay the highest cost, and I don't mean financially. They are the ones who would be refused care because it is not "cost-effective." As McCaughey refers to Daschle's book, she also says:
Daschle says health-care reform “will not be pain free.” Seniors should be more accepting of the conditions that come with age instead of treating them. That means the elderly will bear the brunt.
Medicare now pays for treatments deemed safe and effective. The stimulus bill would change that and apply a cost- effectiveness standard set by the Federal Council (464).
The Federal Council is modeled after a U.K. board discussed in Daschle’s book. This board approves or rejects treatments using a formula that divides the cost of the treatment by the number of years the patient is likely to benefit. Treatments for younger patients are more often approved than treatments for diseases that affect the elderly, such as osteoporosis.
The fact is that Obama is insisting that this bill be passed NOW! RIGHT NOW! and he suggests a major catastrophe will occur if we don't. The push to avoid scrutiny should be what makes us all stop and INSIST on scrutiny. He sounds like a spoiled child who is afraid he won't get his way. And to suggest that this bill has been bipartisan is an out and out lie. The bill was supported by NO Republicans in the House and only 3 in the Senate - 3 liberal east coast Republicans. This is not bipartisan. This bill is a horrific and permanent mistake for our country.