Monthly Archives: July 2009

Trying to find out what Obamacare really says about end of life issues

There has been a lot of discussion about “end of life” provisions in Obamacare.  One side says there will be a mandatory consultation by some government bureaucrat for seniors to discuss end of life issues.

The other side says, no, no, no, it’s not mandatory, it just says medicare will pay for it, if you choose to consult with your own physician about end of life issues.  Which is why I don’t believe what I hear on the so-called news.  It’s just one side against the other, each trying to push their own ideas about it.

It’s almost impossible for the average person to know because we have no credible information.  And even if we did have a copy of the bill to read, we would need “two lawyers” to interpret it for us, as Mr. Rangel says  It wasn’t Mr. Rangel but Conyers.

In addition to that, I think there are about 5 different bills going around, 3 in the house and 2 in the senate.  Lord knows which one they are even talking about.

I have been looking for something that would give me the exact wording of this section or at least an honest assessment of what it says.  I tried to download the over 1000-page bill, and it shut my computer down.  I finally found somewhat of an explanation.  This is from a post made by Forbes.com.

They say:

Buried halfway through the current version of “America’s Affordable Health Choices Act,” the House version of ObamaCare, is a set of proposals pertaining to end-of-life care.

Which has language going back to another bill:

The end-of-life language originates from a different bill, called the Advance Planning and Compassionate Care Act, introduced earlier this year by Sens. Jay Rocefeller, D-W.Va., and Susan Collins, R-Maine. In addition to the consultation, which Medicare will pay for every five years, the bill also says that patients will be informed about the benefits of hospice and palliative care. Hospices are facility or home-based services for terminally ill patients to receive pain medicine and other comforts before they die.

[“”Palliative care is any form of medical care or treatment that concentrates on reducing the severity of disease symptoms, rather than striving to halt, delay, or reverse progression of the disease itself or provide a cure.””]

Thus the “take a pain pill” analogy.

I don’t see anything here that says the consultation is mandatory but:

It also would create a tracking system to see if doctors are promoting advanced care directives and following them.

Could this be where the idea is coming from that the government will be involved in it.  The “tracking system” would monitor the doctors to see if they are following “directives” which would come from where?  Probably the government. AHRQ? HHS?

President Obama has made statements that make you think that cost will be a determining factor, even using his grandmother as an example of questioning whether or not she should have a hip replacement at her age, and so hospice and pain pills will be sort of pushed or advocated to elders as a choice they should make.  And, of course, hospice care companies are all for it.  Funny trivia – one of the major hospice companies also owns Roto Rooter.  🙂

The Bush administration put forth something that encourages living wills, and they say they are just reiterating this as an option.

I don’t know.  But there are some things that would make a person disagree with this on principle.  When you add to it that the Obama administration has at least two czars with questionable beliefs, one who elevates animals to the status of human beings  and one who has advocated population control and sterlization.  Plus we have an advocate of Obamacare, Peter Singer, who sets forth equations that measure the value or lack of value of old people.  A third is Dr. Ezekial Emanual, presidential advisor and brother of Rahm, who holds views that place values on human life with regard to their age and ability to contribute to society.  It does matter what people believe because from those beliefs come their actions.  (I just read this last paragraph back to myself and it sounds like scare tactics of some wild-eyed

wild eyes

radical, but don’t go by me, just check it out.  I did not make it up.)

Of course, if you’re young, it’s probably not an issue but everybody will be old, if they live long enough.  🙂

See previous post and Here.

Posted:  07.31.09

5 Comments

Filed under Barack Obama, health care, Human Interest, life, Uncategorized

Obama still should apologize, he was wrong!

The beer summit does not get it.

Obama should apologize for rushing to judgment without the facts, and for insulting the Cambridge police in favor of his friend.

It is not the facts of this particular case that are really important here.  It is the fact that the President of the United States made it a national incident and he didn’t have the facts.  He even prefaced his statements saying he did not have the facts.  He kept saying “from what I heard.”  He heard it from Gates, so he only had one side and was quick to condemn the police.  He is a lawyer and he knows you don’t make judgments on hearsay, not even to mention that he is a Harvard scholar, as is Gates.

Neither is it about the entire history of the country nor about every single thing that has ever been done wrong.

Every incident has to be judged on its own merits, which is what a court of law or a grievance committee is for if one believes they were wronged.  Crowley is entitled, as a U. S. citizen, to the presumption of innocence.  Gates is entitled to have his side heard as well.  But not on the scene – in a proper proceeding.

I don’t think it does any good at all to have all this talk, talk, talk.  We don’t need more dialogue.  It only divides.  If we could just get a clean slate and not drag up 200 years of what happened before we were born, we may be able to make some progress.  But then we have made progress – tremendous progress.  In this case alone, we have a president who is black, we have a governor of Massachusetts who is black, and we have a mayor of Cambridge who is black.  It seems they have all done pretty good in America.  In fact, Gates is an educated, well-heeled, man who returned to Martha’s Vinyard after the meeting.  The president returned to the White House.  So who is the little guy in this scenario?

It’s kind of like a troubled marriage.  If every time there is an argument, you bring up every single thing that has happened throughout the marriage, all the things that have hurt your feelings or made you mad, this marriage is doomed.  It divides and it will never save a marriage.  For reconciliation, at some point there has to be forgiveness, a line drawn in the sand, and move on from there to build or rebuild the relationship.

So the beer summit was just that – B.S.

I did not think Sgt. Crowley should attend it, but he did the right thing, came out and answered questions, said they had agreed to disagree.  Just heard somebody say to watch Crowley, he’ll probably be the next head of the FBI.  🙂

But President Obama is using this “beer around a picnic table” to avoid taking responsiblity for his mistake.  He clearly hurt a lot of people by making this a national issue, from the citizen who made the 911 call, to the police department, to Crowley’s colleagues, the City of Cambridge, the families involved, the children involved.

Update:  I am just watching an incident that happened in Florida where the cops “made up stuff.”  Horrible.  I did notice that it involved a white cop and a white woman.  Just because you are white does not mean that you can’t be a victim in this country.  But, again, every case on its own merits!

Posted:  07.31.09  Update:  07.31.09 @ 1:49.

2 Comments

Filed under Barack Obama, Human Interest, Law, life, politics, President Barack Obama, Uncategorized