Look Out Grandma--Here Come the Death Panels
August 10, 2010
Health care reform would mean rationing of care, the critics warned. The government would be slashing Medicare funding and, pretty soon, groups of experts--a.k.a., "death panels"--would be dictating the terms of coverage. Sure enough, it's starting to happen. From the Washington Post: Starting in January, the new health-care law will make it easier and cheaper for seniors to get preventive care. Medicare beneficiaries will be able to receive for free all preventive services and screenings that receive an A or B recommendation for seniors from the U.S.
July 29, 2010
-- Richard Posner is not a fan of the Post's "Top Secret America" series. -- A thorough debunking of Stanley Kurtz's case that Barack Obama is a socialist. -- Ezra Klein interviews Paul Ryan, Alan Blinder, and Mark Zandi. -- For Rick Perry, "worst uninsured rate" equals "best healthcare in the country."
Paul Ryan Gets Catty
July 20, 2010
Conservative dreamboat Paul Ryan on Mitch Daniels: "He would be a great president," said Ryan. "He looks like your accountant, but that’s not so bad maybe." She's... pretty. She's kind of got a big butt -- but a lot of guys like heavier girls! And maybe Republicans want to nominate a short, bald, accounting-resembling guy.
Scenes From The Ideas Festival
July 07, 2010
You don't have to be a Marxist to detect a certain class bias at work in the Atlantic Monthly's "Ideas Festival." Here's a report from Lloyd Grove: “We are, without question, in a period of decline, particularly in the business world,” [Mort] Zuckerman said. “The real problem we have…are some of the worst economic policies in place today that, in my judgment, go directly against the long-term interests of this country.” Zuckerman added that he detects in the Obama White House “hostility to the very kinds of [business] culture that have made this the great country that it is and was.
The Conservative Misinformation Feedback Loop, Cont'd
April 08, 2010
A few weeks ago, I wrote a post entitled "The Doc Fix Myth And The Right's Misinformation Feedback Loop." I used the example of a medium-sized claim that's demonstrably false, but has recirculated endlessly among conservatives, most prominently rising star Paul Ryan. The false claim is that the Affordable Care Act uses mythical savings from the "doc fix" in order to offset the cost of expanding coverage. Jeffrey H.
Paul Ryan And The Conservative Misinformation Feedback Loop
April 03, 2010
A couple days ago, Paul Ryan delivered a speech on the sinister history of what he called "progressivist" thought. In the speech, he quoted Barney Frank as having said, "We are trying to increase the role of government on every front." It struck as odd that I'd never heard this before. A quick search shows that it's been circulating among fringe-right website for months now. It's also clearly misleading. Frank was in a discussion of regulatory reform, in which Ralph Nader was accusing him of timidity, especially with regard to regulating derivatives.
An IRS Agent In Every Kitchen!
April 01, 2010
Numerous Republican worthies, like Paul Ryan, John Ensign, and Dave Camp, have recirculated the claim that the Affordable Care Act will require 16,000 new IRS agents. Factcheck.org dissects the urban legend and describes how it spread.
Welfare Queens Against Health Care Reform
March 26, 2010
This brief interview with a conservative protester outside President Obama's health care was telling: "Yes, we need health-care reform, but why couldn't we have taken it step by step?" asked Kitty Rehberg, a 71-year-old farmer from nearby Rowley, who held a colonial-era American flag as she protested near Mr. Obama's speech.
Ryan And Redistribution
March 24, 2010
The most remarkable and revealing speech of the health care debate was delivered by Paul Ryan, the new right-wing idol. In the preceding weeks, Ryan had largely cast his opposition to health care reform in the wonkiest of terms, assailing the administration's claims to fiscal responsibility.
Of all the conservative complaints about health care reform, the one I find most baffling is the notion that the financing is phony because it fails to account for physician pay increases. The complaint is 100% phony. And yet it continues to be repeated over and over in the conservative media, recycling through a misinformation feedback loop. The complaint gained new momentum and publicity last week, when right-wing icon Paul Ryan requested that the Congressional Budget Office calculate the cost of health care reform combined with physician pay increases.