Monday 11 May 2009

Three stories on lies and skullduggery in the health care battle

Insurers are now promising a plan to cut their own costs and save us all $2 trillion dollars. But they’re pretty vague on (a) how it would be enforced, and (b) why they haven’t done it before now. It is quite likely that this is their next effort to try to prevent the establishment of as public, government-run option for health care.

As I reported on 8 May, a new ad campaign is about to be launched, dishonestly cherry-picking data and scary anecdotes from Britain and Canada, in an effort to persuade voters that health care reform is Just. Too. Scary. The campaign is being run by a guy who has already been nailed for health care fraud. But it is also being managed by the Smearboat gang that spent millions lying about John Kerry five years ago.

As I reported on 3 May, Senator Nelson has sold out to the insurance lobby on the issue of the public option, for $600,000 in donations from the insurers. Now we learn that Senator Baucus is likewise going wobbly on the public option; he got over a million from insurers, the health sector and Big Pharma over five years.

***UPDATE** -- the opponents of health care reform were caught trying to fake a controversy, claiming a pro-reform ad was pulled because it was dishonest. Um, wrong. What really happened? The broadcaster wants to run more ads -- they just wanted the sponsor to put their logo onscreen.

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