Prepare for motion sickness

  • Follow Editorials

Barack Obama was going to be the Transparency President. Important legislation, he said, would be on a Web site in plenty of time for Americans to digest it before it was voted on.

He said health care reform proposals would fill the air at town hall meetings and such. Let the debate begin!

Well, it's ended before it began.

Obama and the Democratic Congress could make the argument that the economic stimulus bill earlier this year was too much of an emergency to allow extended debate or public viewing. Fine. But it was passed pretty much before anyone had a chance to read it.

That seems to be the strategy: Get major legislation enacted before voters know what's happening to them and the country.

They tried it with "cap and trade," the House-passed energy bill that would give the federal government unprecedented and, frankly, Orwellian powers to regulate emissions and to tax and penalize Americans and coordinate the buying and selling of pollution "permits" across all sectors of the economy.

Thankfully, people are waking up to the scheme, and it has been slowed in the Senate.

They're also trying it with sweeping new "hate crimes" legislation that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wants to rush through as an attachment to a war spending bill.

The bill would give certain classes of people a greater weight of legal protection than others -- which would clearly violate the equal protection clause of the Constitution.

But nowhere are we at greater risk from this "Oklahoma land rush" legislative strategy than in health-care reform.

Democratic plans to create a new national health care program to compete with private insurance would cost at least $1 trillion that we don't have, according to the Congressional Budget Office, and would likely be the beginning of the end of private health insurance. Once a tax-paid option were available, it's likely businesses would drop their plans and encourage employees to jump on Uncle Sam's back.

Yet, President Obama dismisses debate on the issue as "chatter" that's only getting in the way of getting things done. As for debate: The White House considers it over, now that a campaign operative was placed in an audience and allowed to ask a pointed question and get a teary hug from the Consoler in Chief.

Obama this week put us all on notice that this is going to happen, whether we want it or not -- and before Congress' August recess.

"Inaction is not an option," he declared. How dismissive and arrogant is that?

Of course, inaction is always an option -- and, in fact, when faced with a much less savory alternative, it's the best option.

Consider the government's track record on such programs: As the Cato Institute notes, Medicare Plan A was estimated to cost $9 billion by 1990, and actually ended up costing $67 billion. Similar gross miscalculations have occurred in subsequent entitlement programs, even on bigger scales.

The CBO estimates the extra trillion would insure 16 million -- or about $62,500 a person.

The health care system is a huge chunk of our economy, and yet we're rushing headlong into completely changing how it operates. Has this been digested across the country? Of course not.

That's by design. When Hillary Care was considered in the 1990s, we had time to debate it -- and it was dead on arrival. Democrats in Washington don't care so much what their health care reform does as long as it survives, without real debate.

Indeed, voting on the 1,000-page -- now $1.5 trillion -- bill began swiftly this week.

One dispirited Internet observer said, "I've stopped worrying about slowing this train down. Now I figure that, the sooner the whole thing goes off a cliff, the sooner we can reroute the track."

He may get that chance sooner than he, or the rest of us, may like.

Comments (75) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
concernednative
28
Points
concernednative 07/17/09 - 05:19 am
0
0
President Obama ran on the

President Obama ran on the platform of providing healthcare to basically all Americans and guess what he won the election. So although you disagree not publishing the Hannity and Beck monologues everyday and accept the fact that he won is following through. You may disagree but Barack Obama is living up to his campaign promises on Gitmo, Iraq, Healthcare, and cap and trade and the American people last Nov voted for him.

Brad Owens
4449
Points
Brad Owens 07/17/09 - 05:27 am
0
0
Not sure what all is going to

Not sure what all is going to be done but something is going to happen either really good or really bad.

carcraft
25928
Points
carcraft 07/17/09 - 05:47 am
0
0
concernednative on Fri Jul

concernednative on Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:19 AM You will be FORCED UNDER PENALTY OF LAW to have health insurance. Where is the power in the constitution for the federal government to regulate people like that? The 10 amendment prohibits it! What happpened to freedom of Choice? Who pays for all this crap? Where is tort reform? 20% of health care costs are related to Tort problems. What happened to the liberal manatra of choice? And last but not least who and how do you pay for this, America is BROKE and geting more into debt every day. Obama is creating another debt inducing health care rationing program to bankrupt America! Obama himself will not praticipate in this second class monstrosity, just us sheeple...

Brad Owens
4449
Points
Brad Owens 07/17/09 - 05:50 am
0
0
concerned native, Obama ran

concerned native, Obama ran on getting us out of Iraq in 60 days (he didn't do it did he?). He promised to close 'Gitmo' (He tried and then 'nuanced' his position on that when the polls showed no one wanted terrorist in a prison near them), He did NOT run on Cap and Trade and I challenge you to show me where he proposed such anywhere in the general election. He has in fact 'shifted changed nuanced revised removed and modified' every single position he ran on. Some so much that you cannot see the original promise. So, NO it is NOT what he ran on and no one should accept something they disagree with because he is President. Just as I said, when no one else would, that Bush was wrong on Iraq and it was not unpatriotic to question him on it I say that Obama has lied about his politics and what he intended to do. It is amatuer hour in the White House and Obama IS learning on the job. He is not JFK he is Jimmuh Carter.

TrukinRanger
1748
Points
TrukinRanger 07/17/09 - 05:50 am
0
0
Hopefully it'll be very
Unpublished

Hopefully it'll be very good.... something along the lines of every American having some type of health care instead of millions NOT having it. We have the highest priced health care system in the world... and contrary to what you hear- it's not necessarily the best. It's run by greedy hospitals, physicians, and drug companies. I don't know what the answer is... but the richest nation in the world should be able to come up with something!!! Perhaps diverting all the overseas aid and put it towards healthcare.

GACopperhead
6
Points
GACopperhead 07/17/09 - 06:01 am
0
0
carcraft, the people had

carcraft, the people had choice on 11/04/2008. They voted for their choice.
Now, we are watching to see if CONGRESS gets it right. They are already balking, most likely due to heavy lobbying from the medical profession who doesn't want to see their cash cow and "omnipotent" power reduced. I would have preferred to see big medicine avoid the situation by regulating itself, but it prefers to fight, banking on the past, which showed Congress sisn't have the brass ones to do the job. The AMA has come out in support of one of the Democrat plans, as have the drug manufacturers, I understand. You folks complain, but the Republicans haven't offered a viable solution, other than let things be. That's not an alternative,as there are MANY Americans who work, are frugal, and yet still can't afford medical insurance or medical care. This doesn't appear to be solvable by supply and demand, as they(medicine) have been banded together for years, in what I see as a type of monopoly, forcing the rest of us to pay whatever they demand, or go without. Doctors have large educational bills, but they get paid back pretty quickly. IT's time to do something, not nothing.

crackerjack
150
Points
crackerjack 07/17/09 - 06:31 am
0
0
Transparency is just one of

Transparency is just one of the many lies he promised us while campaigning, and we have no one to blame but ourselves. I didn't vote for him but I didn't vote against him either, as I didn't believe McCain either.

patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 07/17/09 - 06:49 am
0
0
Obama ran on a policy of skin

Obama ran on a policy of skin color. He won. He ran on a policy of transparency in government. He won. He ran on a policy of total socialism for everyone. He won. He ran with McCain as his competition. He won. None of these things gives him a mandate to destroy this country. Next time, the uninformed "undecided moderates" will know who he is. He'll not be prezbho after Jan 2013. In the meantime, it's the responsibility of every American to stop this mad Marxist at every turn.

Brad Owens
4449
Points
Brad Owens 07/17/09 - 06:56 am
0
0
Why must we 'do something'?

Why must we 'do something'? No one is turned away in Richmond County and I know that for a fact. Anyone can get very cheap medical care at the Health Dept and the University Hospital using indigent care. People are not dying in the streets due to a lack of good healthcare like they do here in Africa. This is BS and it is not gong to work. Americans are being told we 'MUST' do something that there is a 'crisis' and everything else. Is there? How many peole have no coverage? Several million? 6 million? Is having 2% not covered reason enough to force this on everyone? What if it was 15% or 20%? Is that a majority? And what makes healthcare a 'right'? Is it in the USC? Not where I can find it. This is a HUGE welfare program and it will NOT help the poor. The rich will not be affected because they can affrod the best, so that leaves the Middle Class holding the bill and receiving the least for their contribution. Not trying to say we can't have some help sent but this is a monster! What is the RUSH!? Why not have a REAl debate and produce a document that everyone will have time to digest?

carcraft
25928
Points
carcraft 07/17/09 - 07:01 am
0
0
GAC- Where in the

GAC- Where in the constitution does the federal government have the power to force you to buy health care? How do we pay for it? Don;'t you understand that America is broke and going more into debt all the time? The CBO says the cost of this is more than we are pending now and the cost will only get higher! The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) is nonpartisan. 20% of US health care cost is related to legal liability issues, Tort reform would be a good place to start to reduce health care costs. The lawyers own the democratic party so it won't happen. Then limit federal funds for illegal immigrants to triage and stablization then ship the home instead of treating them like they are elegible for the best of every thing- The Democrates don't want immigration reform because ACORN and many Democrates see Illegals as a voting block. These two items would reduce health care costs tremendously. Hospitals are not getting rich and Drs work like hell to get where and what they make...It is not given to them..

GACopperhead
6
Points
GACopperhead 07/17/09 - 07:20 am
0
0
Tort reform...so that doctors

Tort reform...so that doctors can continue to provide inept, or greedy health care. Let's see, Nadia Sulleman, Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley...those are just 3 high profile examples of doctors with no ethics doing whatever makes them the MOST money. Doctors who are banned from practice in one state, just going to another. Nurses and other medical professionals, addicted to drugs( I knew several personally) worrking in our hospitals, using on the job. Hospitals charging outrageous prices for TYLENOL. carcraft, Bush offered immigration reform in the order of amnesty, do you think that Republicans aren't after Hispanic votes? They won't reform immigration if it means losing the legal vote. Medicin needs to be reformed and regulated. Immigration need to be reformed. Many things need reform, but none of our Congress will do it until lobbyists are banned, giffts are banned, and we take our government back from the government. Hospitals aren't getting rich? I'd disagree. Doctors do work hard, so do I. I have knowledge and ablilites that many doctors don't have, yet, when I've gone to work for them, they, as a group are more miserly than many of the poor people I have done work for.

mgroothand
5
Points
mgroothand 07/17/09 - 07:24 am
0
0
carcraft: You are the first

carcraft: You are the first person that I know of that has touched on health care for illegals. The Feds would get a lot more support for their health care plan if they would make it absolutely clear that illegals are NOT covered under their plan.

2tired2argueanymore
1
Points
2tired2argueanymore 07/17/09 - 07:36 am
0
0
I would bet that if the new

I would bet that if the new program included all of the congress and senators, they would all vote No in a heartbeat. Why can't they be made a part of the debacle they are creating instead of having the wonderful health care they get. We should all be writing our representatives and telling them to sign on or sign out.

Riverman1
84117
Points
Riverman1 07/17/09 - 07:38 am
0
0
Note to the editor: AP Style

Note to the editor: AP Style calls for Congress's instead of Congress'. Yeah, I know, confusing when so many other words ending in s only want the apostrophe.

xanadu
0
Points
xanadu 07/17/09 - 07:45 am
0
0
there was nothing wrong with

there was nothing wrong with our health care system until kid obama and his merry band of pranksters got their slick hands on it. wait til all this shakes out everyone, and you are waiting two years simply to get a diagnostic test done, let alone an actual procedure, then we'll see how much you love a national health care plan. anytime the government gets their hands on something that should be run by the private sector, there is nothing but trouble for us all. but, since i won't have to buy any of their garbage plans, i hope all the socialistic fools get what they want, cause i can't wait to hear the griping and moaning that is going to occur down the line.

justthefacts
21954
Points
justthefacts 07/17/09 - 07:51 am
0
0
Copper has said on here many

Copper has said on here many times he doesn't have HC Ins. Of course he wants this bill to pass. You are not going to change his mind. He wants you to buy his insurance for him.

grumpy
0
Points
grumpy 07/17/09 - 07:57 am
0
0
What has happen to everyones

What has happen to everyones veiws of Oboma? When he was electeed I said he was going to be the downfall of this country.He ran on change , well we have change a national debt that our great grand children will be paying after we are all gone.Why didn't everyone see him for what he really stood for at election time?

sgachief
0
Points
sgachief 07/17/09 - 08:01 am
0
0
no one, not even congress

no one, not even congress knows what exactly is in this bill but one thing is for certain. this bill will not control healthcare costs or improve healthcare delivery, in fact, if financed thru medicaid, peachcare and medicare cuts, most of the rural hospitals in the southeast will ceases to be. this will put an even heavier burden on the big city hospitals that are already overcrowded. thus a lot of people will not have access to any heathcare.

slippery 25
0
Points
slippery 25 07/17/09 - 08:01 am
0
0
Obama is showing his total

Obama is showing his total lack of leadership by not making sure that the millions of voters who elected him understand all parts of his health care bill. Instead he is trying to cram it their faces
Leads me to be he is hiding something.

ladyjanegrey
0
Points
ladyjanegrey 07/17/09 - 08:02 am
0
0
ALM....American Liberation

ALM....American Liberation Movement..............desperate times calls for desperate measures. Do not accept the healthcare bill..refuse to pay the fine...refuse to pay your taxes until this idiot is out of office.

carcraft
25928
Points
carcraft 07/17/09 - 08:07 am
0
0
GAC- I have worked in health

GAC- I have worked in health care for over 30 years, military, private, federal and state systems. The number of people addicted to drugs is miniscule, you just can't functin and they ussually end up dead or drummed out. Tort reform does not prevent law suits, it prevents frivolous suits. Have you ever been sued? I have and the case was crap, I was sued for 1 million plantiff settled out of court for $50,000 and the high priced NEW YORK LAWYER got probable $30 to $35,00 while the "victim" got $15 to $20,000. It is a damn lottery now. I doubt you went to school for 11 to 15 years after high school and worked 10 to 14 or 16 hour days for many of those years and left with your "skills" $200,000 in debt! Where were the people around Elvis and Jackson that let this cr*p go on? We have to take responsiblity for our selves at some point.

concernednative
28
Points
concernednative 07/17/09 - 08:08 am
0
0
Brad Owens, you know America

Brad Owens, you know America has been debating healthcare for over 50 yrs long before I was even born. So debate is just a stall tatact for those that don't want it. If 50 yrs isn't enough we will debate until the end of time if you have your way. And also using ER as a primary care physician is what is ruining our system. I am a moderate in my thinking. But I say it is time to put it to and or down vote and get on with it. And by the way Obama and McCain both ran on cap and trade.

southernguy08
499
Points
southernguy08 07/17/09 - 08:10 am
0
0
We want to let our government
Unpublished

We want to let our government run healthcare. This is the same government that is trillions of dollars in debt and can't even secure our borders from foreign invaders. Hope you all like this "change." Come on 2010.

dashiel
176
Points
dashiel 07/17/09 - 08:17 am
0
0
Riverman, I salute your

Riverman, I salute your efforts to educate the Chronicle editorial "staff" on plural possessives ending in multiple esses. I hope your prescriptive efforts will also extend to posters on when to use its or it's. (Hint: it's is ALWAYS a contraction of it is, NEVER possessive. And Yes, Patty, I'm talking to you too.)

justthefacts
21954
Points
justthefacts 07/17/09 - 08:22 am
0
0
concerned, everyone agrees, I

concerned, everyone agrees, I guess, that something needs to be done. However, rushing this 4,000 page document through Congress with no debate is ridiculous. As a so called moderate how could you endorse that. It is irresponsible. Have you read any of the provisions or are just wanting change for the sake of change? Do you know what it is going to cost, or how we are going to pay for it? Do you know that YOU will not be able to choose your own plan if you deem it better the Fed plan. That does not bother you? Do you know that members of Congress and UNIONs are exempt from it. Don't you wonder why? The CBO has said it will not reduce costs? Huh? Isn't that the supposed purpose.

Riverman1
84117
Points
Riverman1 07/17/09 - 08:24 am
0
0
Dash, it is just a thing I

Dash, it is just a thing I have that I pick up on errors when reading. I hope no one at the AC takes offense. As far as PT and others messing up "it's" and "its" that's a whole different story. That's a pretty simple rule. I'm sure PT understands the proper form, but posting in these small, hard to read, boxes is often done quickly without the writer checking. I'm certain that I, too, mess-up now and then. An editorial, on the other hand, should be thoroughly examined.

Brad Owens
4449
Points
Brad Owens 07/17/09 - 08:29 am
0
0
CN, they did not run on what

CN, they did not run on what is being proposed. That is my point. Obama said he would have the troops out of Iraq in 60 days, he KNEW it could not be done but the masses of ignorant folks bought it. The reason it has been debated for so long is beacuse it should be. Tell me this, if only about 3% of the population doesn't have proper coverage, why is it a CRISIS? It is not. Look, most of these types of bills are filled with hidden little goldmines for special interests. If you REALLY think this is being done to help the poor you are naive. This is a super-duper porkus maximus bill. Why must it be done now?

overburdened_taxpayer
117
Points
overburdened_taxpayer 07/17/09 - 08:34 am
0
0
The only thing I am willing

The only thing I am willing to commit to right now because I don't know everything about the healthcare bill is if it's good enough for us then it should be good enough for the President, his family, the Congress and their families. It seems they are always telling us what is good for us but they ALWAYS make themselves exempt when they can.

overburdened_taxpayer
117
Points
overburdened_taxpayer 07/17/09 - 08:35 am
0
0
Oh and the other thing I will

Oh and the other thing I will commit to about this thread is that the picture is horrible. Mainly because Pelosi is in it.

concernednative
28
Points
concernednative 07/17/09 - 08:36 am
0
0
BO, you have good initials by

BO, you have good initials by the way. I hope your middle name begins with an H. How can you support endless debate that is a do nothing Congress and govt. I mean at least push for a vote and put pressure on your reps to vote your way. Out of Barrow, Broun, Chambliss and Isaakson. The only possible yes is Barrow so your representatives with vote your point of view. I am not sure rather Broun or Barrow is your rep. So you maybe 3 for 3 if you have Broun. That is what our Republic is about not endless debate for generations.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Vogtle workers see both reactor projects

Some veterans of the nuclear industry were at the site south of Augusta to see the complex network of rebar and concrete rising out of the ground in the 1970s and ’80s. Now, they are back.
Search Augusta jobs