Thursday, August 27, 2009

No Rationing in National Health Care? Think Again

In today's Wall Street Journal Betsy McCaughey has written an excellent article entitled "Obama's Health Rationer-in-Chief." You can read the entire article here.

"Dr. Emanuel argues that to make such decisions, the focus cannot be only on the worth of the individual. He proposes adding the communitarian perspective to ensure that medical resources will be allocated in a way that keeps society going: "Substantively, it suggests services that promote the continuation of the polity—those that ensure healthy future generations, ensure development of practical reasoning skills, and ensure full and active participation by citizens in public deliberations—are to be socially guaranteed as basic. Covering services provided to individuals who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens are not basic, and should not be guaranteed. An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia." (Hastings Center Report, November-December, 1996)"

What is going on here? Where are the journalists with integrity? (I know there are some on Fox News.) How can they let Obama continue to say that his health care plan will not require rationing. Dr. Emanuel is the health policy advisor at the Office of Management and Budget and a member of the Federal Council on Comparative Research. AND....are you ready for this? He is described as a bioethicist!!! Yup, this guy is a bioethicist. We actually live in a country where a man who has said the above quote is not dismissed as an irrational and ill individual, if not a sociopath. He is a bioethicist and advisor to the President of the United States!!!

So, Dr. Emanuel, if those with dementia are not to receive health care, how about those with Downs Syndrome? Those with learning disabilities? How about the physically handicapped? The mentally retarded?

And Dr. Emanuel, may I ask, when exactly did you decide you were entitled to take on the authority of God?

If President Obama is not interested in health care rationing he would not have this man as an advisor. Just because rationing may not be spelled out in the bill does not mean it will not happen. The President clearly thinks these are good ideas.

I will write about this more later. Some of you may remember my mother suffered from Alzheimer's Disease for many years. I am actually too upset about this to go on. Plus, Blogger or something is messing with my spacing. It feels like harassment. If there are odd spaces in this post, know that I'm trying to fix it.


Kalona said...

This makes me sick and angry. Just how demented should a person be before they are refused care? My 83 year old mom is still able to function on her own, although I see her daily and do the things she can no longer handle. She lives in the moment, but her life is happy and certainly not without meaning. Who will decide when she is no longer valuable enough to society that she can no longer receive medical care? This is outrageous! Where is this mans love and compassion for people?

Rosemary Bogdan said...

Kalona, I wondered the same thing. And who the heck is he or anybody else to decide? It just feels very evil.

Denise said...


I posted on health care rationing in general here and on Dr. Emanuel specifically here. He and many others in the current administration approach health care from a utilitarian perspective. He sees nothing wrong with making judgments about the value of lives. On the other hand, our Catholic moral teaching is that every life is of inestimable worth. The utilitarian approach values the strong over the weak and vulnerable. We need strong Catholic voices to speak out against this.

Lynz said...

I get rather passionate about this topic... but I have little ones to attend to right now... but I will do a blog on this. It really gets to me.

Rosemary Bogdan said...

Denise, those are good posts. I went back and read them. As a doctor, you always offer a good, pro-life medical perspective and I always appreciate your keeping us informed. This stuff is horrific. I can't believe these people are in positions of power.
Lynz, yes, I get passionate about it too--

Teresa said...
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Robin said...

Glenn Beck has been running shows informing us of these Obama advisors and their views. I have been contacting my Reps. and Senator about my dissatisfaction with the direction this healthcare situation has gone. Now I just pray a lot. We are in a heap of trouble with these people currently in office.