“For President Obama, healthcare is a deeply moral issue.”
melody barnes 6.jpgI gagged at those opening words on a video by Melody Barnes, White House Director of the Domestic Policy Council, attempting to reassure Americans euthanasia is not in the healthcare plan on the WH’s new Reality Check website.
I don’t need to remind pro-lifers about Obama’s “morality” on the issues of abortion and infanticide.
But you may need reminding that Barnes previously served on the boards of both Planned Parenthood and EMILY’s List. So she and Obama share the same “deeply moral” commitment to abortion.
But on to the topic of euthanasia. Barnes, in a spookily calm and reassuring voice, says not to worry….

Pro-lifers say the push for the elderly and infirmed to be kind and leave the planet ahead of schedule to free up bed space and save taxpayers $$ is definitely in the bill. But don’t just take our word for it. Jivin J mentioned an on-point August 8 Washington Post piece. Here are excerpts:

Enter Section 1233 of the health-care bill drafted in the Democratic-led House, which would pay doctors to give Medicare patients end-of-life counseling every 5 years – or sooner if the patient gets a terminal diagnosis….
[A]t least as I read it, Section 1233 is not totally innocuous….
Supporters protest that they’re just trying to facilitate choice – even if patients opt for expensive life-prolonging care. I think they protest too much: If it’s all about obviating suffering, emotional or physical, what’s it doing in a measure to “bend the curve” on health-care costs?…

advance directive.jpg

Section 1233… lets doctors initiate the chat and gives them an incentive – money – to do so. Indeed, that’s an incentive to insist.
Patients may refuse without penalty, but many will bow to white-coated authority. Once they’re in the meeting, the bill does permit “formulation” of a plug-pulling order right then and there. So when Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) denies that Section 1233 would “place senior citizens in situations where they feel pressured to sign end-of-life directives that they would not otherwise sign,” I don’t think he’s being realistic….
Ideally, the delicate decisions about how to manage life’s end would be made in a setting that is neutral in both appearance and fact. Yes, it’s good to have a doctor’s perspective. But Section 1233 goes beyond facilitating doctor input to preferring it.
Indeed, the measure would have an interested party – the government – recruit doctors to sell the elderly on living wills, hospice care and their associated providers, professions and organizations. You don’t have to be a right-wing wacko to question that approach.

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