Monday, November 13, 2006

Hill, that ain’t no bad dream

Go ahead, Hillary. Make my day.

That national health care thing was such a big winner 13 years ago, here’s my advice: Go for it. (Heh. Heh.) Pedal to the metal, baby.

Between their delirium over winning—ever get the idea that even they were surprised they actually won an election?—and their irresistible attraction to nanny-state public policy, the Dems just can’t seem to help themselves. Like a moth to a flame, there are just some things they can’t resist—like higher taxes, class envy, political correctness and socialized medicine.

At the time—1993—Hillary was in charge of the ill-fated attempt under hubby Bill to marry socialized medicine with free-market economics. This fiasco was euphemistically called “managed competition,” which is about as oxymoronic as flame-retardant charcoal briquettes or café au lait, hold the cream. Only with worse results.

The Associated Press account, for once, put that event in its proper historical perspective: “The failure of that effort helped Republicans win control of both the Senate and House the following year.”

The problem is there are just too many Americans with either the business sense or the common sense to be fooled by this kind of freakonomics. The truth they can’t easily hide is simply this: Wherever health care is turned into a line item in an annual federal budget, it always becomes a rationed commodity. And the rationing inevitably occurs along age lines. When budgets are tight (and when aren’t they?), coronary bypass procedures, for example, become unavailable to people over the age of, say, 67, until the next budget year. Then next year they become unavailable to anyone over the age of 69.

Sorry, sir, the bucks just ran out. And before these people ever get to the top of the waiting list, nature lends a hand by removing a goodly percentage from the list entirely. Too many Americans know this. Sure, there will be a clamoring and a lobbying from the usual suspects. But with the graying of America, I suspect we’re even less inclined to fall for a scheme like Hillary-care than we were 13 years ago.

As a serious issue, it’s a loser. But then, Hillary’s got to make a mark somewhere, if she hopes to be president in ’08. (Actually, in our book Mitt Romney is the guy who’s got the best handle on the health care issue by far.)

“Health care is coming back," Clinton warned, adding, "It may be a bad dream for some."

Yeah, like for the people of your party who hope to get re-elected next time around.


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