The ideas are banned

In my last post, I noted the president’s brilliant idea simply to decree that the negative consequences of his policy won’t happen. They liked that idea so much, they used it elsewhere as well. The president’s health care proposal would create a Medicare cost-cutting commission that many are justly afraid would become a care-rationing board (in part because the president said it would). But the proposal decrees that it won’t happen that way:

To make sure that America’s seniors on Medicare are protected, all ideas that ration care, raise taxes or beneficiary premiums, or change Medicare benefit, eligibility, or cost-sharing standards will be banned.

The ideas are banned! Awesome! I’d love to see how they write that legislation.

Okay, seriously, this is nonsense. The reason for an outside commission is so that it could submit recommendations that are politically unpopular. Those recommendations would automatically become law unless Congress votes by a two-thirds majority to reject them. Why would they need such a mandate if they’re only going to propose painless, uncontroversial cuts?

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