"The mind is a compact, multiply connected thought mass with internal connections of the most intimate kind. It grows continuously as new thought masses enter it, and this is the means by which it continues to develop."

Bernhard Riemann On Psychology and Metaphysics ca. 1860

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Saturday, August 08, 2009

An Unhealthy Dilemma

Now let me see. Obama when questioned on the charge that his health care reform will mean rationing shoots back that health care is already being rationed. I will now try to reason through this logically to see if this is true, because I believe we can come to some meeting of the minds so to speak. When my elderly mother had a benign brain tumor removed a few years back, she did not have to succumb to any outside board inquiring whether such an operation would be cost effective. Medicare was not under any such mandate. Therefore, her treatment had no taint of being rationed whatsoever. Now, correct me, I beg of you, if I am wrong here, but wouldn't the current legislation (or the one that Peter Orzag desires) set up just such an oversight board to determine whether her operation would be cost effective from the standpoint of metrics like life expectancy, quality of life, and other such rubrics? In fact, I know I will be accused of engaging in the logical fallacy of slippery slope here, but isn't this the essence of the meaning of the term "Useless Eaters" that the Nazis used during their reign of terror? And isn’t the same type of statistical manipulation that Dr. Emanuel engages in with his "lifeboat ethics" type discussions in the New York Times which also underlies the mathematics of the so called “quants” that led us to the collapse of the speculative bubble. And why is it that we simply had to bail out insurance behemoth AIG to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars (much of which is why Goldman Sachs is doing so well today) without flinching, but can't afford too expensive medical procedures on the other hand? Please would Mr. Obama or his any of his surrogates like to enlighten me in my state of confusion on these issues?

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