Last summer ObamaCare was sailing through Congress and, given the huge majorities in both chambers enjoyed by the Democrat Party, predicted to pass by early autumn. However, in early August Governor Palin dramatically shook up the entire health care debate with her game-changing Facebook Note:
The Democrats promise that a government health care system will reduce the cost of health care, but as the economist Thomas Sowell has pointed out, government health care will not reduce the cost; it will simply refuse to pay the cost. And who will suffer the most when they ration care? The sick, the elderly, and the disabled, of course. The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s “death panel” so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their “level of productivity in society,” whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil.
Her brilliant use of the metaphor “death panel” to describe the inevitable rationing which must ensue in Obama’s government takeover of the US health care system provided a rallying point for the many townhall meetings which occurred during the month of August. The effectiveness of that phrase was evident by the near hysteria it created within the Democrat Party and their water carriers in the mainstream media. Indeed her leadership on this issue almost killed the entire bill which was heading for easy passage last summer. It ultimately did pass (barely) but not until late March after the most corrupt legislative process in the nation’s history.
The criticism of her metaphoric use of the phrase “death panels” wasn’t limited to Democrat politicians and their sycophants in the media. Even normally lucid conservative pundits criticized her for its use. Charles Krauthammer, in one of the most bizarre articles I have ever read, famously told her to “leave the room” at the beginning of his piece because there were no death panels before spending the rest of his article explaining why the rationing in the bill amounted to…death panels.
In a post three weeks ago, we linked a video in which ultra-lefty New York Times columnist Paul Krugman exculpated Governor Palin’s use of the metaphor:
More recently, Peter Orszag, Director of Obama’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), further vindicated Governor Palin. Let’s go to the video and allow Orszag to explain in wonkish detail how ObamaCare’s death panels will work. Via Breitbart TV:
Amazing. First Krugman and now Obama’s own OMB Director confirm what Governor Palin has been saying all along: the advisory panel within ObamaCare responsible for rationing health care will effectively be a death panel for those deemed unworthy of the cost of the care. More on Orszag’s vindication of Governor Palin from Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey here and Gateway Pundit’s Jim Hoft here.
Exit question: When can we expect Charles Krauthammer to invite Governor Palin back into the room?
Update: (H/T jimr3) Pat Archibold at the National Catholic Register writes:
Last year during the run up to the eventual passing of the Obamacare bill, President Obama had to take to the airwaves several times to promote the bill. One significant reason why was the dextrous dubbing of care rationing panels as ‘death panels’ by former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.
When Palin gave a name to the fear, the poll numbers for the bill really began to crash. President Obama and his supporters were livid. They ran to any network that would put them on air to decry the use of the term and to personally ridicule Palin for saying it. They said over and over and over again, there is no such thing as a Death Panel.
So now the deed is done and guess what? President Obama’s Director of OMB says that the unelected Medicare advisory panel can and will make binding decisions on how much care is too much. A death panel.
Gary Jackson’s take on Orszag’s revelation here.
Peter Orszag, President Obama’s budget director, basically admitted that under Obamacare, access to doctors and medicine will be rationed. And the people on the “powerful rationing panel” making life-or-death decisions will be government bureaucrats, not medical professionals.
In January, a group of health care providers and advocacy groups sent a letter to the administration opposing the Independent Payment Advisory Board, noting that it would not be accountable to anyone but the president, who has sole power to appoint its members.
If this “powerful rationing panel” decides that you will not get the operation, medical procedure or medication your doctor says you need and you subsequently die as a result, what would your grieving family call it?
A “death panel,” perhaps?