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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 22, 2009 / 4 Tishrei 5770

Death panels — plural — are already in place

By Jack Kelly

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Sarah Palin was wrong when she said the provision for end of life counseling in the health care reform bills pending in Congress is a first step toward government "death panels" which will decide who gets expensive medical care and who doesn't.


The death panels — there are two of them — already have been voted into law as part of the stimulus bill Congress passed in February. President Obama has appointed members to them, and funded them to the tune of $20.6 billion.


The death panels are not, of course, called death panels. They are the Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research (hereinafter "Federal Council"), which will set policy, and the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (hereinafter "Coordinator"), who will enforce it.


The Federal Council will perform essentially the same functions as the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), which rations care in Britain's National Health Care system. One member is Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. Dr. Emanuel has written that American physicians take the Hippocratic Oath (do no harm) too seriously, and that priority in health care should be given to those most useful to society, which he defined as those between the ages of 15 and 40.


"Comparative Effectiveness Research" bases approval or rejection of the treatment of patients on a formula that divides the cost per treatment by the number of years the patient is expected to live after having received the treatment. Language authorizing the Federal Council to set a cost effectiveness standard for treatment can be found on pages 73 and 74 of the final text version of the stimulus bill, which you can read here: http://www.readthestimulus.org.


The health care bill pending before the House would create a subordinate Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research whose purpose, according to Dr. David Janda, who alerted me to these provisions, is "to slow the development of new medications and technologies in order to reduce costs." This provision is in Section 1181 on page 502 of the bill, which you can read here:


http://edlabor.house.gov./documents/111/pdf/publications/AAHCA-BillText- 071409.pdf. Dr. Janda is an orthopedic surgeon in Michigan who is one of the world's leading authorities on injury prevention and health care cost containment.


Britain's NICE has a rule of thumb that it is inappropriate to spend more than $22,000 to extend life by six months. Consequently, British cancer patients do not have access to drugs readily available in the United States. Dr. Karol Sikora, formerly head of The World Health Organization's cancer section, estimated in 2000 that 25,000 Britons die prematurely each year because of these restrictions.


The Coordinator will "guide medical decisions at the time and place of care." Doctors and hospitals that are not "meaningful users" of the new system will face penalties. Dr. Janda said Members of Congress told him this means doctors could be fined or imprisoned if they provide more care than the guidelines call for.


The eminence grise behind the death panels seems to be former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD), who was slated to be President Obama's Secretary of Health and Human Services until his nomination was derailed by the revelation he'd failed to pay some $100,000 of taxes owed on a car and driver provided him by a private equity firm. He's been a frequent visitor to the White House since Mr. Obama took up residence there.


In his 2008 book "Critical: What we can do about the health care crisis," Mr. Daschle proposed a health care equivalent to the Federal Reserve Board, which the Federal Council resembles. And he offered tips on how to get his vision enacted into law.


President Clinton made two big mistakes when he tried to revamp the health care system in 1993, Mr. Daschle wrote. He put too many details about his plan in his bill, and allowed the public too much time to find out what was in it. And he followed regular procedure, which required 60 votes for approval in the Senate.


Mr. Daschle recommended President Obama be vague about what he wants to do, to put key provisions in budget bills, and to rush the measure through during his "honeymoon" period. This may be why the president is saying the time for debate is over, even though most of the provisions of the bill wouldn't go into effect until 2013.

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JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration.

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© 2009, Jack Kelly

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