For those of you watching the U.S. Open in NYC this week, there's another back and forth battle going on in DC that's also a must see.
Hours before the President gave his speech on health care - unnecessarily before a joint session of Congress since he didn't say anything new - Sarah Palin gave a third guide to watching the event (Guides 1 and 2 are here and here.):
I'm pleased that the White House is finally responding to Republican health care ideas instead of pretending they don't exist. But in doing so President Obama should follow his own sound advice and avoid making "wild misrepresentations". Medicare vouchers would give everyone on Medicare the chance to decide for themselves which health plan to use, rather than leave that decision to government bureaucrats. Such proposals are the kind of health care reform that Republicans stand for: market-oriented, patient-centered, and result-driven.
The White House talking points leave the rest of my arguments unanswered. They don't respond to the idea that all individuals should get the same tax benefits received by those who get coverage through their employers; that we must reform our tort laws; and that we should allow Americans to buy insurance across state lines. The White House also fails to respond to the Nyce/Schieber study indicating that wages will fall if the government expands coverage without reducing health care inflation rates.
One last thing: after President Obama's speech tonight, listen for which pundits use the words "false", "scary", and "risky" in describing the proposals I put forward. That's how you'll be able to tell who the White House counted as "allies" worthy of receiving its talking points.
 See http://www.politico.com/bl
 See http://www.nytimes.com/200
Hours after the speech, she responded thusly:
After all the rhetoric is put aside, one principle ran through President Obama’s speech tonight: that increased government involvement in health care can solve its problems.
Many Americans fundamentally disagree with this idea. We know from long experience that the creation of a massive new bureaucracy will not provide us with “more stability and security,” but just the opposite. It's hard to believe the President when he says that this time he and his team of bureaucrats have finally figured out how to do things right if only we’ll take them at their word.
Our objections to the Democrats’ health care proposals are not mere “bickering” or “games.” They are not an attempt to “score short term political points.” And it’s hard to listen to the President lecture us not to use “scare tactics” when in the next breath he says that “more will die” if his proposals do not pass.
In his speech the President directly responded to concerns I’ve raised about unelected bureaucrats being given power to make decisions affecting life or death health care matters. He called these concerns “bogus,” “irresponsible,” and “a lie” -- so much for civility. After all the name-calling, though, what he did not do is respond to the arguments we’ve made, arguments even some of his own supporters have agreed have merit.
In fact, after promising to “make sure that no government bureaucrat .... gets between you and the health care you need,” the President repeated his call for an Independent Medicare Advisory Council -- an unelected, largely unaccountable group of bureaucrats charged with containing Medicare costs. He did not disavow his own statement that such a group, working outside of “normal political channels,” should guide decisions regarding that “huge driver of cost ... the chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives....” He did not disavow the statements of his health care advisor, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, and continuing to pay his salary with taxpayer dollars proves a commitment to his beliefs. The President can keep making unsupported assertions, but until he directly responds to the arguments I’ve made, I’m going to call him out too.
It was heartening to hear the President finally recognize that tort reform is an important part of any solution. But this concession shouldn’t lead us to take our eye off the ball: the Democrats’ proposals will not reduce costs, and they will not deliver better health care. It’s this kind of “healthy skepticism of government” that truly reflects a “concern and regard for the plight of others.” We can’t wait to hear the details on that; we look forward to working with you on tort reform.
Finally, President Obama delivered an offhand applause line tonight about the cost of the War on Terror. As we approach the anniversary of the September 11th attacks and honor those who died that day and those who have died since in the War on Terror, in order to secure our freedoms, we need to remember their sacrifices and not demonize them as having had too high a price tag.
Remember, Mr. President, elected officials work for the people. Forcing a conclusion in order to claim a “victory” is not healthy for our country. We hear you say government isn’t always the answer; now hear us -- that’s what we’ve been saying all along.
- Sarah Palin
Couple notes from me:
- Since Rep Joe Wilson has apologized to the President for calling him a liar last night, I'm wondering when the President will apologize to the American people for calling US - and anyone who disagrees with him - liars?
- When is the President going to apologize to the American people for lying to US? For example:
- We'll be able to keep our health care. That's a lie. We will only be able to keep our current health care TEMPORARILY. At some point, we will not be allowed to renew our healthcare coverage.
- Illegal immigrants are not covered. To my knowledge there is no verbiage in any of the current bills (no, I have not read every word of the thousands of pages) that specifically prohibits coverage. Therefore if an illegal challenges a provider for not taking care of him or her, the courts will have to point out that no where in the bill is covering illegals specifically prohibited - therefore providers will have to cover them.
- Abortion is not covered. Same argument as above, nowhere is paying for abortions with taxpayer money specifically prohibited so challenges in a court of law would not succeed.
- "I won't sign any bill that adds one cent to the deficit." We don't believe you, Mr. President, since in 9 months you have signed bills collectively that have increased our deficit to unprecedented levels in the 230-year history of our country. And you underestimated your deficit levels by TWO TRILLION DOLLARS, first stating that it would be $7 trillion and revising to $9 trillion. In this case, you may be lying to yourself, but you are certainly lying to the American people, who believe that ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.