Sunday, January 16, 2011

Death Panels Republican Style

My wife and I, being in our later years, not too long ago attended a meeting at which was being discussed the utility of stating our “end of life care” wishes. First, the stress was on us stating what we wanted done, or not done. Second, the speaker noted the utility to our children of removing the need for them to have to make such decisions at the worst possible time. So, we wrote our documents, had them notarized, and gave them to our children.

This, republicans have characterized as the “death panels” under what they term as “Obamacare.”

But recently, in Arizona, we can see in action actual death panels, being overseen by its governor Brewer. In her zeal to save money in a state besieged by debt, the governor has cut off Medicaid recipients from a long list of organ transplants, without which the intended recipients will surely die. Some have already succumbed. The governor rationalizes her decision to cut off poor people by mentioning the possibility that many would die anyway, even with the transplants. She is not entirely wrong, of course. Some transplant recipients will die, but not all. The ones who might make it, will now die as certainly as the ones who might not make it.

So, it seems, once again, republicans have put into practice the very thing they accuse the president of intending to do. By now, this is standard Republican Party policy—first denounce the president for something he has no intent of doing. Then do it themselves. And as they begin reconvening, the republicans in charge of the House of Representatives will be working on their first order of business-denying some 40-50 million people health insurance. Surely, as night follows day, another republican death panel objective is being debated.

And on another planet, one of the past leading lights of the Republican Party, Tom Delay will be shipped off to a Federal prison, as he mutters, “I did it, but I didn’t do anything wrong . . . I did it, but . . .”
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