Thursday, November 16, 2006

Purge the counter-revolutionary elements II

Well, the jury is back. TPaw is no longer a conservative. No less an arbiter than Katherine Kersten, our dear Katie, says so. TPaw has gone over to the dark side. When he picked up the paper from the steps this morning, Spotty could hear Katie keening before he even slipped the paper out of its plastic bag:

If you think Gov. Tim Pawlenty has a conservative bone left in his body, read the news reports about his statements Tuesday at a Minneapolis health care conference.

Pawlenty announced that he would use the machinery of government -- and a "surplus" of taxpayer money -- to "start moving toward universal health coverage." How? First, by "covering the state's 70,000 to 90,000 uninsured children." He proposes either to expand MinnesotaCare, the state's publicly subsidized health coverage program, or create a brand new state program.

If you don't hear an echo of Scotty's Power Line post on the same subject here boys and girls, you need to get your hearing checked.

Katie continues:

It's clear that health care policy needs reform in this country. The problem isn't quality of care. We've got the best in the world. The challenge is paying for that care and ensuring that coverage is as broad as possible.

Those four sentences are true, false, false, and true. The health care delivery system in the United States is capable of delivering excellent care to those people with meaningful access to that care. The rest? Well never mind.

Katie tells us that the problem is that consumers are "insulated" from the economic effects of their health care decisions because of the third-party payer (generally speaking insurance) system. Well, Katie those 70 to 90 thousand kids are certainly insulated from the economic effects of their health care decisions! They're insulated from the health care system period.

In his speech, TPaw reserved a little criticism for HMOs:

In another troubling sign, Pawlenty engaged on Tuesday in pseudo-populist bashing of private companies that are trying to wade through the current health care swamp. According to the Star Tribune, "The governor saved some sharp words for health maintenance organizations":

"'What is the health value of what they do?' he said. 'How have the outcomes improved? Are we less obese? Are we less diabetic? Do we have less heart disease? Do we have less cancer? Are our children more engaged and active? Do we have less mental health challenge?'"

Katie is really the Commissioner of Troubling Signs, isn't she? That's the head of the Department of Troubling Signs, right next door to the Department of Funny Walks. Katie had to admit that the answers to the governor's questions were really, well, NO, but that was no reason to be so mean to the HMOs!

Katie saves the best venom for the end:

There's a lot of talk these days about him as a possible presidential running mate in 2008. I suggest that Rudy Giuliani or John McCain hurry up and make him an offer. Otherwise, Hillary Clinton may beat them to it.

You gotta love it. Scene: 2008 Republican National Convention in the Twin Cities. As TPaw accepts the nomination to run as the vice-presidential candidate, Katie and Scotty are loaded into the black mariah for obstructing the sidewalk entrance to the X with their "Pawlenty is a traitor" signs.

Update: According the WHO, the United States ranks 37th internationally in health care outcomes. The perfidious French are first. At least we beat Slovenia. This is what Katie means by "best in the world."

Source: Gov. Pawlenty's a conservative? Since when?

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