Back in 2009, during the early days of the national ObamaCare debate, Sarah Palin earned a “pants on fire” rating from PolitiFact for essentially using two words: “death panels”. PolitiFact went on to give her “death panels” statement the “lie of the year” award.
Fast forward to today, and it’s clear that PolitiFact was wrong. Don’t take our word for it, take the word of former Democratic Presidential candidate Howard “Screamin'” Dean:
One major problem is the so-called Independent Payment Advisory Board. The IPAB is essentially a health-care rationing body. By setting doctor reimbursement rates for Medicare and determining which procedures and drugs will be covered and at what price, the IPAB will be able to stop certain treatments its members do not favor by simply setting rates to levels where no doctor or hospital will perform them.
There does have to be control of costs in our health-care system. However, rate setting—the essential mechanism of the IPAB—has a 40-year track record of failure. What ends up happening in these schemes (which many states including my home state of Vermont have implemented with virtually no long-term effect on costs) is that patients and physicians get aggravated because bureaucrats in either the private or public sector are making medical decisions without knowing the patients. Most important, once again, these kinds of schemes do not control costs. The medical system simply becomes more bureaucratic.
Follow the logic trail here. This might be difficult if you’re a liberal. The IPAB is a health care rationing board. It’s staffed with government bureaucrats. When government bureaucrats ration health care, that means that they get to pick and choose who lives and who dies. Finally, when those bureaucrats get to choose who dies, they can appropriately be labeled “death panels”, the objections of PolitiFact notwithstanding.
Howard Dean isn’t the only liberal who has vindicated Sarah Palin. The liberal economist Paul Krugman has not only endorsed death panels, but he’s called for them as a requirement to keep ObamaCare solvent.
The First Amendment (and thank God for it) gives PolitiFact the right to put the word “Fact” in its name. However, if the organization wishes to have any credibility (assuming that’s even possible at this point), then its leaders should immediately apologize to Sarah Palin.
She was right about death panels. PolitiFact is fiction.
Image credit: The Libertarian
H/T: Weasel Zippers