The Secretary Determines
Ronald Reagan once said, "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help." Many found humor in this quip, which had more than a kernel of truth to it. There is nothing funny, however, about the three words that will replace those nine.
"The Secretary determines." These words appear 139 times in Obamacare and should strike fear into the hearts of all Americans, on both the left and the right. Obamacare, once implemented, will introduce something completely new.
Until now, the government has only taken your wealth or labor without you having committed a crime. Now it will take lives. Those who cheer Obamacare's passage need to understand that health insurance is not health care. Costs will increase and rationing will occur. Doctors will leave the profession or may set up practice in a more hospitable country. Emergency rooms will be just as crowded because the people who go there for the sniffles will continue to do so because that is all they know.
The highest quality care that remains will be exempted from the normal healthcare system in order to administer to the rich, the well connected, and anyone else "the Secretary determines." There will be death panels, starting with the elderly, and as resources become scarce, whomever else "the Secretary determines." There will be exemptions for some religions and coercion for others, as "the Secretary determines."
As doctors and other medical professionals leave, "the Secretary determines" who will be trained to replace them and in what specialty and where they are located. Anyone who is familiar with the joke about what you call the person who graduates last in his medical school class may not laugh when "the Secretary determines" that the curriculum is too hard to achieve the desired result. Couple this with placing the blame for the system's failure on the usual suspects and you have a recipe for disaster.
"The Secretary Determines" are now the three most terrifying words in the English language.
Ebben Raves is a veteran, constitutional conservative activist, and speaker who teaches American history and has been a guest on several talk radio shows. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.