For someone who has been observing politics for a while it’s hysterical to listen to Democrat politicans rail against the “special interests” that they claim run the opposing party. They even try to paint a picture of some sinister Special Interests behind the August push-back at the myriad of Town Hall meetings across the US when in fact the organized astroturfing in those conflicts came as a union-goon response from the Left.
Their accusations of special interests behind any opposition to their plans are ridiculous because the Democrats are owned lock, stock, and barrell, by some Very Special Interests. Between the bolshevik labor unions and the American Trial Lawyers Association the Democrat Party marionettes have very little wiggle room. Americans saw union influence actually override bankruptcy law in the case of [forever dead to me] GM and Chrysler and we perennially see union special interests further destroy the American education system. More obvious in the current debate about socialized medicine is the 300 pound gorilla in the living room of tort reform.
Writing over at the wonderful Big Government site, Capitol Confidential spills the beans on the Democrats’ continuing protection of their benefactors. It’s short so I will quote the entire thing here:
The health care bill recently unveiled by Speaker Nancy Pelosi is over 1,900 pages for a reason. It is much easier to dispense goodies to favored interest groups if they are surrounded by a lot of legislative legalese. For example, check out this juicy morsel to the trial lawyers (page 1431-1433 of the bill):
Section 2531, entitled “Medical Liability Alternatives,” establishes an incentive program for states to adopt and implement alternatives to medical liability litigation. [But]…… a state is not eligible for the incentive payments if that state puts a law on the books that limits attorneys’ fees or imposes caps on damages.
So, you can’t try to seek alternatives to lawsuits if you’ve actually done something to implement alternatives to lawsuits. Brilliant! The trial lawyers must be very happy today!
While there is debate over the details, it is clear that medical malpractive lawsuits have some impact on driving health care costs higher. There are likely a number of procedures that are done simply as a defense against future possible litigation. Recall this from the Washington Post:
“Lawmakers could save as much as $54 billion over the next decade by imposing an array of new limits on medical malpractice lawsuits, congressional budget analysts said today — a substantial sum that could help cover the cost of President Obama’s overhaul of the nation’s health system. New research shows that legal reforms would not only lower malpractice insurance premiums for medical providers, but would also spur providers to save money by ordering fewer tests and procedures aimed primarily at defending their decisions in court, Douglas Elmendorf, director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, wrote in a letter to Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah).”
Stay tuned. There are certainly many more terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad provisions in this massive bill.
One could argue that if the American media was a watchdog rather than a lapdog they would point out the truly sinister special interests that manipulate and control most of the agenda of the American Left.