Hello 'Death Panels'


After spending the last four years or so telling us that there was no such thing as "death panels" -- ridiculing Sarah Palin, etc. -- the Democratic establishment hoping to hold the majority in the Senate now has another big negative to overcome: Death panels are real and the media is talking about them.

No less than Mark Halperin, the senior political analyst for Time magazine, told "The Steve Malzberg Show" that death panels are "built into the plan. It's not like a guess or like a judgment. That's going to be part of how costs are controlled."

This, of course, is irrefutably true. It always has been. It is one of the points that critics of Obamacare pointed out early and often. But it never received the kind of public discussion it deserved because the president and Democrats, apparently, judged it politically toxic. So, they just denied it. And, in one of the biggest flubs in American journalism, the nation's media, by and large, looked the other way.

Halperin is talking about that, too.

"It's clear that at the time of the passage of the Affordable Care Act and in the context of the presidential campaign, the press did nothing like an adequate job in fly-specking and scrutinizing the whole law," Halperin said.

"Not just the provisions that have already become controversial, about which the president was misleading . . . but other aspects.

"I would hope that as we chronicle what's going on now with the political controversy of the law and scrutiny of the president's past statements on some issues that we all learn a lesson from that."

If, indeed, some in the media begin reporting on these death panels or whatever you want to call them, I hope they will also make the connection to what Sen. Harry Reid did when last week he scratched a 200-year-old Senate rule that required presidential appointments to gain a 60-vote consensus, instead of a simple majority.

The president will be making appointments to these "cost-containment" panels, and they will be rubber-stamped by the Democratic majority in the Senate. Obamacare and its consequences will be all on them.

Those chickens will come home to roost as senators face re-election in 2014. There's no way they can run away from the nasty effects of Obamacare and the deceptive way in which Democrats sold it. Death panels being just one.