The cold blanket of Obamacare

With health care reform, the devil is not in what you know, but in the hidden consequences of what you have done. Photo: Full Metal Patriot/http://bit.ly/mwGO6T

SAN JOSE, August 26, 2012 - “Secrets keep this nation safe,” said a retired U.S. intelligence officer, adding “but secrets also kill us slowly.”

In the clandestine world of spooks and ruffians, some refer to the growing omnipresence of the U.S. government’s reach into the lives of ordinary Americans as ‘the cold blanket’.

In a manner eerily reminiscent of the 2008 action-thriller movie, Eagle Eye, Homeland Security cameras and other detection systems now literally blanket almost every square foot of American soil.  

If there’s any doubt about this claim, just glance up the next time you’re sitting at a red light. Perched atop every intersection scaffolding is at least one small black camera, with each avenue of direction getting its own complement of prying eyes.

In some cases, they are just microwave Doppler units that detect vehicles approaching as part of car sequencing criteria; in others, there are additional white camera emergency vehicle sensors that respond to adjustable light strobes, which allow traffic lights to change to facilitate a string of ‘green lights’ if necessary.

In almost all cases, these cameras are tied into a central databank of video surveillance. 

Back in 2007, with the publication of the book, “Jihad and American Medicine,” this level of traffic pattern surveillance was not the case. The book called for video monitoring of vulnerable soft terrorist targets such as hospitals and their surrounding neighborhoods, but could not have envisioned that a whole new form of government-mandated health care would impose an even greater degree of intrusion into the daily lives of people than any traffic camera ever could.

With the ‘Affordable Care Act’, American patients can look toward intense data-banking and scrutiny of everything from the number of tests a doctor orders to the type of prescription you get filled at the local pharmacy. In its sense of empowerment, the federal government will register your ailments, pains, lumps and bumps not as an individual problem that you are experiencing, but rather as a statistical variable on a scatterplot of millions.

Your allowable procedures and the number of pills your personal physician can write for you will ultimately, eventually, be determined by statistical templates devised in sterile government buildings hundreds or thousands of miles away. 

Since government is run by data-crunchers, and those bureaucrats are allocated limited resources, the powers-that-be will tell you there is no other way than Obamacare—or something very similar—to finally get a grasp on the massive healthcare system debacle that siphons away one-sixth of the gross national product. We are told that if that number reaches 20% or more of the nation’s economy, there will be dangerously low levels of resources available for our schools and our military institutions.

Ironically Obamacare itself is already sapping tenuously low levels of funding for State Medicaid programs; this causing governors nationwide to decide whether to restrict Medicaid services further, or price an entire new generation of college students out of a quality education due to empty coffers previously designated for in-state residents.

Obamacare is not primarily dangerous to our personal health because of the money it costs or the goals it aims to achieve, but rather because of the long-term damage it will inevitably create in the area of manpower. Long after the full implementation of the PPACA law, with regional ‘Accountable Care Organizations’ in full swing and the fully operational (and powerful) Independent Payment Advisory Board in high gear, the real risk to Obamacare will lie in the shifting practice patterns and attrition of healthcare professionals themselves.

For Obamacare to succeed, doctors must abandon practices that they can no longer afford; and lesser-trained healthcare professionals (all wonderfully trained for what they do) will have to fill the void of vacated practices and new venues serving millions of additional patient customers.

With expensive educational loans, and anywhere from eleven to 18 years of post-high school education and training required to produce just one American educated/trained medical doctor, the ability to ‘flex up’ and restore physician-level expertise to our healthcare system, once gone, will take a generation to restore.

The real hazard of Obamacare is not in the intent of the law, but in the unintended consequences of its implementation. One day, every American may indeed be issued a government health insurance card to carry around, but there’s little chance that card will afford much in the way of peace of mind. The cold reality of a wet blanket is much more likely.

 

Image courtesy of Full Metal Patriot

Doctor Dorin is the Founder and President of the nonprofit America’s Medical Society, and a board-certified physician practicing in Southern California.

 

 


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Adam Frederic Dorin, M.D., MBA

Doctor Dorin is a Hopkins-trained, board-certified anesthesiologist, practicing in a large group in San Diego. He is a small business owner, a Commander in the US Navy Reserves, and the Founder/President of America's Medical Society, Inc., (AMS) a non-profit corporation created to serve and educate physicians and the general public in matters of national health-care reform and medical politics

Contact Adam Frederic Dorin, M.D., MBA

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