Ceci Connolly’s article today in The Washington Post is generally a good one, providing the perspective of folks who actually know the medical business as opposed to those we’ve elected to regulate it. It’s worth the read because it thoughtfully describes some of the issues we’re facing and it has a great closing quote. But the article includes one remark from a politician, and as you might expect, it’s a Republican perspective.
"We don’t want to turn health care over to a bunch of bureaucrats in Washington, who then will determine what kind of health care we have," committee member Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah) said recently. "And you know that rationing is going to happen."
Is this news? No, it’s the well worn rhetoric we’ve heard many times before. It’s also widely ridiculed because, of course, it’s now insurance companies who ration care, denying 20% of claims, according to an ad currently running on television.
But if Connolly is going to allow the Republicans another chance to spout meaningless tripe, then why not give the other side to mouth its well worn tripe?
Does the quote add anything to the discussion? No. If she wanted to set up the premise of the article — that we are already rationing healthcare — why not write:
While Republicans worry about government rationing care and Democrats saying that insurance companies are rationing care, the truth lies closer to this: care is rationed for a variety of reasons, and it’s costing Americans billions of dollars a year, according to medical experts.
The closing quote?
"In the United States today, we give you all the care you can afford, whether or not you need it, as opposed to all the care you need, whether or not you can afford it."
–Arthur Kellerman, an associate dean at Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta