My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

anonymous = afraid to back up what they say

Y'all know how much I HATE anonymous comments! Here's one I received on my earlier post:

Anonymous said... you know, Snopes is an urban legend debunking site...and these "facts" turn out to be exactly that. Doesn't mean your opinion is invalid -- but that forward you got sent turns out to be horse-hockey. Either someone's yanking your chain, or they don't know how to Google.

Well... I'm sure that the Democrat (not Democratic - because they aren't) Party would like us to believe those are not facts. However... I DO know how to google. I took time to pull up copies of the bill from several different sources to verify the content. Yep... they're really in the bill. Urban legend? I wish. Now... as far as how the bill will be implemented... who knows, really... but our unfortunate reality is that we've elected people into office who have demonstrated contempt for the Constitution.

If you believe what you're posting, sign your name to it. I do.


Anonymous said...

I'm tickled that you thought it was worth reposting my comment. Let me see if I can get a response to go through...

The language is available at (This is a superseded version of the bill – but appears to be the one referred to in the e-mail.)

Every now and again, the e-mail manages a half-truth -- but a lot of the time it's just a flat lie. If words have meaning (and they do) and truth is more than some hippie-dippie concept without definition (and it is)...then the words in the e-mail are just false. When it says "The bill says X," and you go to the bill, and it actually says "Y" -- well, as the comedian used to say, "these questions ain't that hard, Martha."

Just to give a few examples:

The "auditing of employers" from page 22 turns out to be a standard agency survey to make sure that employers aren't going out of business. Like all agencies do when conducting such routine surveys, they'll just hold hearings every now and then -- not conduct some wildly expensive "audit."

The "rationing" on page 29 turns out to be a limit on out-of-pocket expenses -- not on care. Apparently someone saw "$5000 limit" and said "Oh no! Rationing!" Nope.

The bit about illegal immigrants on page 50 turns out to be patently false -- even that draft of the bill had a specific ban against providing federal services to them. (See page 143).

And of course the Grande Dame of baloney, the part on page 429 that supposedly issues "AN ORDER TO DIE FROM THE GOVERNMENT" turns out to be a provision saying that if you want to consult with a doctor about an end-of-life decision order -- something responsible people do when the dude in the black hood is hanging out in the lobby checking his watch -- *Medicare* will pay for the appointment. Providing people with information and options? I'm for it -- I'd much rather people die in a way that comports with their personal and religious beliefs than not. If you believe that God is waiting for you on the other might not want the doctors to flog what's left of your body after you've effectively passed on. And if you DO want to scrap for every second of life, you need to tell the doctors that as well. But do you know how to draft a living will? Do you know how to appoint one of your kids to decide whether to pull the plug? (I'm voting for Cody. He knows why.) And will that document be legally binding in case one of the other kids disagrees? I'd want to consult with someone before drafting or signing something like that -- now Medicare will cover the appointment.

(It's also worth noting that Medicare has always paid for end-of-life care. Now it just pays for an opportunity to talk about it in advance. I don't see a difference.)

My objection to this list of supposed "facts" has nothing to do with some "Republican versus Democrat" fight. I'm not cheering for either "team," and I'm no huge fan of the bill as drafted. (I mean, jeez, I'M the one they're hitting up for this sucker.)

My objection is that this e-mail is a series of verifiably false statements -- and that people are actually taking them at face value. And sadly, given the number of distortions involved, I can't believe that the author of the e-mail was just repeatedly mistaken or unable to read the legalese. I have to think that he set out to mislead. If we think truth is important, we shouldn't just let a lie like that pass -- regardless of whether we agree with its goals.

It's fine to attack Democrats as "undemocratic" or somehow acting inconsistently with the constitution (though I hope you don't seriously believe what you say about the other half of the country). But if we rely on bad information to do so, we lose the larger war.