Bob Goldberg’s pre-Thanksgiving blog …
Selective misreporting and recollection on Medicare
Here’s how policy is made: You take a distorted, malicious and venal report about drug prices from Democrat staffers on the House Energy and Commerce Committee being 80 percent higher in the Medicare program being then they are in price controlled Canada or the Veterans Affairs program. This report is an example of how the hard left practices the American political form of insurgency — destroy any effort to democratize public sector programs even it means destroying the people that benefit in the process — and shoot it off to a reporter at the Washington Post who has no time before Thanksgiving to do anything but get a quick response from Bush administration staffers who themselves want to spend time with their families. Then that article gets picked up by ABC News who sends it to people like ME to show they are fair but also to the usual liberal suspects who will endorse the findings who will claim that seniors don’t like and don’t understand the drug benefit.
Problem is, seems that seniors liked and understood nearly the very same program about five years ago when Clinton was pushing it — even though it had no price controls. Here’s how the story played out five years ago …
Clinton’s Medicare Plan To Include Prescription Drugs WASHINGTON, Jun 29 2000 (Reuters Health) — President Clinton has upped the ante in the growing debate over whether to add prescription drugs to Medicare’s package of benefits by offering as part of his comprehensive Medicare proposal a drug benefit that would provide coverage to all of the program’s beneficiaries. The drug plan would be voluntary, and while less generous than some of the proposals offered by Democrats on Capitol Hill, would have no deductible, so that every beneficiary who fills a prescription would theoretically benefit.
While the drug plan would cost considerably less than comparable private coverage under Medigap plans, “it’s not by any extent a free lunch,” Clinton economic policy advisor Gene Sperling told reporters at a briefing Tuesday.
Sperling and administration health policy advisor Chris Jennings said that they expected Medicare would contract with private pharmacy benefits managers to run the program, and that beneficiaries would likely realize discounts on most drugs of approximately 10.%
It should be noted that the average discount under the Bush plan is much lower. It should also be noted that it took me 2 minutes on Google to find this article. Both the Bush and Clinton plans tried in varying degrees to avoid price controls. The hard left is salivating for them. Neither the Post or ABC News seems to address that issue.