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Thank You Governor Palin and Dr. Emanuel’s Response

August 14, 2009

Thank you Governor Palin.  The nation is indebted to you for your continuing determination to say what is right.   We are indebted to you for your unflagging pro-life position.  We are indebted to your for your courage in defending the sanctity of all humans, including Downs Syndrome people.  We are indebted to you for your efforts to expose the danger of rationing that would come with the proposed socialized-lite healthcare system.  Dr. Ezekiel, in an interview in today’s Washington Times here — http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/aug/14/white-house-adviser-backs-off-rationing/ — stated that he no longer supports rationed care.  Here is an excerpt from the article:

Dr. Ezekiel J. Emanuel, the White House official targeted by Sarah Palin and other conservatives as an advocate for health care rationing and “death panels,” said Thursday his “thinking has evolved” on the need to decide who gets treated and who does not.

“When I began working in the health policy area about 20 years ago … I thought we would definitely have to ration care, that there was a need to make a decision and deny people care,” said Dr. Emanuel, a health care adviser to President Obama in the Office of Management and Budget, during a phone interview.

“I think that over the last five to seven years … I’ve come to the conclusion that in our system we are spending way more money than we need to, a lot of it on unnecessary care,” he said. “If we got rid of that care we would have absolutely no reason to even consider rationing except in a few cases.”

Of course, the Dr. holds out for the “few cases.”  Has he really seen the light?  A January 2009 article found here:  http://www.scribd.com/doc/18280675/Principles-for-Allocation-of-Scarce-Medical-Interventions, shows that he endorses what is called the “complete lives” theory of medical ethics whereby people get care to the extent they still have a good portion of their lives left to live.  Thus, people of advanced age should not get the same level of care as the young.  The article seems to be limited to what is called “scarce medical interventions” such as organ transplants, but the rationale seems equally applicable to broader decisions about allocation of all medical resources. 

In any event, Governor now that the Senate Finance Committee has decided to drop the end-of-life consultation language from its draft bill (thanks to you), let’s take aim at the whole idea of nationalized medicine.  It is an anathema.

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