ObamaCare Will Bring Abortion Mindset To Treatment Of Elderly

D. James Kennedy prophetically said years back, “Watch out, Grandpa!  Because the generation that survived abortion will one day come after you!”

And coming they are.  And coming after Grandma, too, of course.

One of the morally depraved assumptions of abortion is that the baby has a duty to die for the convenience of his or her mother.

And guess what, Grandma and Grandpa?  It’s getting to be YOUR turn to quit burdening us with your useless lives.  It’s getting to be time that you shoved off and “died with dignity.”

May 11, 2010 12:00 A.M.
A ‘Duty to Die’?
Thomas Sowell

There was a time when some desperately poor societies had to abandon the elderly to their fate, but is that where we are today?

One of the many fashionable notions that have caught on among some of the intelligentsia is that old people have “a duty to die” rather than become a burden to others.

This is more than just an idea discussed around a seminar table. Already the government-run medical system in Britain is restricting what medications or treatments it will authorize for the elderly. Moreover, it seems almost certain that similar attempts to contain runaway costs will lead to similar policies when American medical care is taken over by the government.

Make no mistake about it, letting old people die is a lot cheaper than spending the kind of money required to keep them alive and well. If a government-run medical system is going to save any serious amount of money, it is almost certain to do so by sacrificing the elderly.

There was a time — fortunately, now long past — when some desperately poor societies had to abandon old people to their fate, because there was just not enough margin for everyone to survive. Sometimes the elderly themselves would simply go off from their families and communities to face their fate alone.

But is that where we are today?

Talk about “a duty to die” made me think back to my early childhood in the South, during the Great Depression of the 1930s. One day, I was told that an older lady — a relative of ours — was going to come and stay with us for a while, and I was told how to be polite and considerate towards her.

She was called “Aunt Nance Ann,” but I don’t know what her official name was or what her actual biological relationship to us was. Aunt Nance Ann had no home of her own. But she moved around from relative to relative, not spending enough time in any one home to be a real burden.

At that time, we didn’t have things like electricity or central heating or hot running water. But we had a roof over our heads and food on the table — and Aunt Nance Ann was welcome to both.

Poor as we were, I never heard anybody say, or even intimate, that Aunt Nance Ann had “a duty to die.”

I only began to hear that kind of talk decades later, from highly educated people in an affluent age, when even most families living below the official poverty level owned a car or truck and had air conditioning.

It is today, in an age when homes have flat-paneled TVs and most families eat in restaurants regularly or have pizzas and other meals delivered to their homes, that the elites — rather than the masses — have begun talking about “a duty to die.”

Back in the days of Aunt Nance Ann, nobody in our family had ever gone to college. Indeed, none had gone beyond elementary school. Apparently, you need a lot of expensive education, sometimes including courses on ethics, before you can start talking about “a duty to die.”

Many years later, while going through a divorce, I told a friend that I was considering contesting child custody. She immediately urged me not to do it. Why? Because raising a child would interfere with my career.

But my son didn’t have a career. He was just a child who needed someone who understood him. I ended up with custody of my son and, although he was not a demanding child, raising him could not help impeding my career a little. But do you just abandon a child when it is inconvenient to raise him?

The lady who gave me this advice had a degree from Harvard Law School. She had more years of education than my whole family had, back in the days of Aunt Nance Ann.

Much of what is taught in our schools and colleges today seeks to break down traditional values and replace them with more fancy and fashionable notions, of which “a duty to die” is just one.

These efforts at changing values used to be called “values clarification,” though the name has had to be changed repeatedly over the years, as more and more parents caught on to what was going on and objected. The values that supposedly needed “clarification” had been clear enough to last for generations, and nobody asked the schools and colleges for this “clarification.”

Nor are we better people because of it.

— Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. © 2010 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Don’t think Sowell knows what he’s talking about?

How about lifelong Democrat talking head and economist Robert Reich?

“Thank you so much for coming this afternoon. I’m so glad to see you and I would like to be president. Let me tell you a few things on health care. Look, we have the only health care system in the world that is designed to avoid sick people. And that’s true and what I’m going to do is that I am going try to reorganize it to be more amenable to treating sick people but that means you,  particularly you young people, particularly you young healthy people…you’re going to have to pay more.

“Thank you.  And by the way, we’re going to have to, if you’re very old, we’re not going to give you all that technology and all those drugs for the last couple of years of your life to keep you maybe going for another couple of months. It’s too expensive…so we’re going to let you die.”

That’s right, young folk.  You get to pay more to have the privilege of one day being euthanized like an unwanted dog at the county animal shelter.  I know I’D certainly happily pay more for a privilege like that.  Pay more for my health care?  And then get to die a slow, painful death of medical neglect because I’ve been considered to be a useless burden like all those millions of babies Democrats have murdered?  Where can I sign?

Oh, I’m ALREADY signed up for it?  Coool.  I just can’t wait until that cancer starts eating holes in my body, and my government health plan offers me suicide in lieu of any actual care.  Or maybe I’ll get REALLY lucky and simply be left to die in my own filth.

Robert “Third” Reich isn’t the only one pointing out this actually quite obvious central tenet of the Democrats’ health plan.  Obama has appointed at least two other “experts” to advise him on medical issues.  Here’s White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel’s brother, Ezekiel Emanuel, whom Obama appointed as OMB health policy adviser in addition to being picked to serve on the Federal Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research:

“When implemented, the Complete Lives system produces a priority curve on which individuals aged between roughly 15 and 40 years get the most substantial chance, whereas the youngest and oldest people get chances that are attenuatedThe Complete Lives system justifies preference to younger people because of priority to the worst-off rather than instrumental value.”

“Attenuated” means, “to make thin; to weaken or reduce in force, intensity, effect, quantity, or value.”  Attenuated care would be reduced or lessened care.  Dare I say it, in this context it clearly means, “rationed care.”

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel included a chart with his work (available here), which shows how he wants to allocate medical resources under a government plan:

When you’re very young, or when you start reaching your 50s and 60s, you start receiving less and less priority.

Then there’s Cass Sunstein, Barack Obama’s Regulatory Czar, who wrote in the Columbia Law Review in January 2004:

“I urge that the government should indeed focus on life-years rather than lives. A program that saves young people produces more welfare than one that saves old people.”

Barack Obama’s Regulatory Czar explains:

“If a program would prevent fifty deaths of people who are twenty, should it be treated the same way as a program that would prevent fifty deaths of people who are seventy? Other things being equal, a program that protects young people seems far better than one that protects old people, because it delivers greater benefits.”

There’s a great deal more about Obama’s own advisers’ plans here.

Which very much jives with what Obama himself told a woman concerning her mother:

“At least we can let doctors know — and your mom know — that you know what, maybe this isn’t going to help. Maybe you’re better off, uhh, not having the surgery, but, uhh, taking the painkiller.”

We can sum it up quite nicely with the words of Obama’s former senior economic adviser: “So we’re going to let you die.”

Die with dignity.  Or die without it.  It doesn’t matter.  What matters in the brave new world of ObamaCare is that liberals have finally succeeded in turning health care into a socialist boondoggle.  And it will one day be your duty to die in order to sustain that boondoggle.

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2 Responses to “ObamaCare Will Bring Abortion Mindset To Treatment Of Elderly”

  1. Reggie Greene / The Logistician Says:

    ObamaCare will prove to be problematic and create (most likely, like technological advances also) just as many problems as it may intend to address. It’s the nature of problems for which we have no pragmatic solutions, and in the eyes of many means that we really do not have a health care issue / problem.

    However, to the extent that either side of the aisle has a theoretical interest in improving the health of its citizens and the health care provided, it is necessary to recognize two very fundamental issues:

    1) The politicalization of the issue, or utilization of an ideological approach, will not result in an effective solution, because most human beings are not sufficiently self-motivated to pursue optimal health. It’s just not going to happen, and an ideological approach does not advance the health agenda.

    2) Because of our (minimum of) two party governmental system, ANY approach formulated will be ineffective because it is a moderate, piecemeal, compromised approach to solving the problem. Imagine giving kids a vaccine which has been diluted, watered down, or adulterated with all sorts of ingredients not essential to attacking the disease.

    Why do ANYTHING if it is not going to be effective? Why waste the time and the money pursuing goals through ineffective means?

    This issue will NEVER be resolved by either side as long as people have freedom of choice. It’s the nature of human beings.

    As Dirty Harry once said, “A man (or humankind) has to know his (or its) limitations.

  2. Michael Eden Says:

    You score a number of good points, Reggie. I would disagree with any contention that ObamaCare is ‘moderate,’ but other than that you are largely correct.

    I agree that a government solution to health care is doomed to fail. Which is why I think we need to keep the private, free market system that allows choice.

    What few people realize is just how dominated our health care system already is by the government. Medicare and Medicaid not only represent more than 60% of our health care, but it also has dictated the terms under which the rest of health care is done. Government isn’t the savior of the US health care system; it is the monster that broke the system to begin with. The argument that the government ruined health care, and so ergo sum the only possible solution is for the government to completely take over the thing that it destroyed is just profoundly wrong on every level.

    That might be “ideological,” but it also has the virtue of being true.

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