RUSH: Let’s get to health care here before Obama’s speech starts, scheduled to start in five minutes and I want you to have some information before this speech begins. Back in 1993, when the Clintons attempted Hillary Care, one-seventh of the US economy was health care. It’s now one-fifth and they’re trying to take it over and they’re trying to nationalize it. Even Stan Greenberg, the pollster who works with Clinton and Paul Begala, is out today saying this thing, it could fail, and it could fail easily because there’s no way you can sign up more people and cut costs. There’s just no way it can be done. Cutting costs is absurd. The Democrats are talking about $600 billion in new tax increases. But George Will yesterday on This Week with George Stephanopoulos had some profound insights and statistics during the roundtable discussion. He said, in the president’s words, it’ll keep ’em honest. The public option will keep ’em honest. ‘To try to preserve the government as a lagoon of honesty, you can argue, refuted by anybody who reads any budget of any administration.’
So the Obama administration says the public option will keep the private sector honest. It’s the public sector that’s dishonest. It’s the public sector that’s corrupted. Number two. George Will says this. ‘Obama says it will play by the same rules as the private insurers, and therefore, won’t drive them out of business.’ Now, if you play by the same rules, what’s the point? If you’re going to have a public option that plays by the same rules as the private sector, then what’s the point of having a public option? In real terms, there is no reason for it. If what you’re saying is it’s not going to be any better — and we all know it can’t be — then why do it? ‘Third, it’s necessary to give what Secretary Sebelius said a choice to the consumers. There are 1,300 entities offering healthcare plans in this country. Another one–‘ i.e., the government ‘– isn’t going to change that.’
Thirteen hundred entities offering health care plans in the country today and Sebelius says that Obama needs to have a public option to give consumers a choice. They’ve got choices out the wazoo. ‘Taking this a step further, many of these 1,300 entities will likely cease to exist if government gets involved.’ So the end result is that there will be far fewer options for people. The idea is to wipe out the private sector with the public option, that’s its intent. George Will again: ‘Finally, there’s the argument that the American people are not smart enough to handle something as complicated as healthcare and have a competitive market. They’ve done rather well in computers.’ But you see, this gets to the common thing I continually attempt to remind everybody of, and that is the government liberals, Democrats look at everybody with contempt. None of us are smart enough to survive without them paving the road, guiding the way, and steering us.
George Will was not done, though. He is talking to Donna Brazile. He said, ‘You talk about the 46, 47 million uninsured. Fourteen million of them are already eligible for other government programs and haven’t signed up. Ten million are in households with household incomes of $75,000 a year and could afford it if they wanted to. Furthermore, an enormous number in that 47 million are not American citizens. Sixty percent of the uninsured in San Francisco are not citizens.’ So this 47 million uninsured number that the left and the media is always throwing around is disingenuous, it’s largely irrelevant. They portray this number and it’s grown from 42 to 43 million during the Clinton days, now it’s magically up to 47 million and is just as accurate as their homeless number was inaccurate. So of the 47 million, they try to paint this picture that the system is so unfair and so mean that it’s leaving 47 million Americans out, and it is not doing so.
Now, Obama just strode to the podium. We’re not going to JIP this. We’re not going to cover this. We’ll get sound bites from it later on. I got a note from a friend of mine today, ‘The AMA will probably cave, Rush. They’re sounding really tough against him now but everybody thinks they’re going to cave because everybody else caves before Obama.’ Here’s the one heavy hand he has on it. He already determines what they make when they treat Medicare patients. They already are in charge of reimbursement. It takes them whatever time they want to reimburse the doctor, and they reimburse whatever they want to reimburse. And Obama has said, further, he is going to squeeze the doctors and the insurance companies, which means he’s going to reduce their fees even more. But there’s a large bit of fear of this guy in every plan he comes up with, whether it be this health care reform plan or the TARP plan, the stimulus money, or whatever, there’s just genuine fear, and these people cave. Everybody’s afraid of government. That’s not a good sign for the United States of America. I run into more people who are more afraid of their government today than at any time in my life. So I don’t know whether the AMA is going to cave or not.
He’s probably going to offer a bunch of platitudinous things here that will never really be in the final deal just to get them. We know the guy says things that aren’t true; we know he makes it up, we know he lies; we know he presents the either/or option. He’ll try to legitimize their concerns while saying his concerns are legitimate, too, we’ll have to work together in getting along and then he’ll forget what their concerns are and just impose them. Of course, we can’t impose our values anywhere else but Obama can impose his values anywhere he wants to go.
Other items in the health care stack. Joe Lieberman has now come out in opposition to the public plan in Obama care. He said this weekend he opposes the public option for consumers. ”I don’t favor a public option,’ Lieberman told Bloomberg News in an interview broadcast this weekend. And I don’t favor a public option because I think there’s plenty of competition in the private insurance market.’ And there is. There are 1,300 different ways you can go to get health insurance.
Lieberman says, ‘We have a unique opportunity, a real opportunity to do this year what we’ve been trying to do for years, which is to reform American healthcare. I think the one thing that will stop that is pressure on the so-called public option.’ So there’s a Democrat not in favor of it, but with all these czars that he has appointed, which give him dictatorial control over every department where there is a czar, Robert Byrd, Democrat Senator, has sent Obama a letter essentially saying, you know, what you’re doing here is unconstitutional because the czars do not have to go to confirmation hearings, the czars do not get approved or interviewed, nobody knows what they do. They’re paid by Obama, they’re ordered to do what they do by Obama. Cabinet secretaries have been rendered secondary or tertiary role, the czars lead the way, the czars do not go through the legislative process, they do not go to the confirmation process. It’s statist behavior, it’s authoritarian behavior. It is Obama basically saying screw the way we’ve set this country up as a representative republic. I’m going to rule this country. I’m not going to govern it, I’m going to rule it.
Also, a friend of mine related to health care, this has been an eye-opening experience for me. See, I have a cat, and I don’t have to do anything with the cat except take her to the vet for normal checkups and teeth cleanings and stuff like that. A friend of mine just got a little puppy. Now, the friend of mine travels a lot and has been busy and has been traveling around finding various places to park the puppy, and there’s a place up in Jupiter called Fur Seasons, the Fur Seasons Dog Resort. You can get a room for your dog with a television in it. There are these places all over the country. And I started thinking about this in relation to American health care. The private sector is providing dog owners every option they want for their dogs to be cared for in a great way, or if you just want to park the dog in a cage in some kennel you can do that, too, if you want to go high end you can do that, but it’s all private sector. It’s much cheaper than human care, don’t misunderstand, but you know how people are with their animals.
Animals are, by definition, pets, essentially helpless. They become domesticated they become dependent on human beings. They attach themselves, some might say they fall in love with their human beings, it’s a debatable thing but they still do get attached and so they’re cared for. I go through this list of options that a dog owner has for its health, for its well-being and they’re all in the private sector, and there’s no federal dog health care plan out there and it’s working just fine. And it’s based on the dog owner’s ability to pay. There’s no insurance involved. Some of them don’t even take credit cards. But it works. Are you comparing dogs to human beings? No. I’m comparing the private sector to the public sector. If the government was into dog care, if you had to take your dog to government-run Fur Seasons or whatever it is, I guarantee you wouldn’t want to leave your dog there because there would be no guarantee it would be alive when you got back.
RUSH: Now, I want to expand on this business I spoke about. We’re back to health care here for just a second. I mentioned a friend of mine, a girlfriend, got a new puppy. It’s an old English sheepdog. It’s the cutest little thing. It’s about eight. (interruption) What are you…? What are you…? What are you laughing at, Snerdley. What are you laughing at? What’s so funny? Girlfriend got a dog. What’s so funny? No, I’m not baby-sitting a dog. The dog’s been over to the house. You ought to see the dog and Punkin. We thought going to be some fur flying here, but there wasn’t. There was just genuine curiosity. Punkin hissed a couple times. It’s a puppy bounding around. You know, Punkin looks at the dog like, ‘Shut up, you little kid. Stop bothering me.’
You know, cats are very indifferent. But no. No territorial battles or anything. The dog is even eating some of Punkin’s food, and Punkin doesn’t care. No, I’m not baby-sitting the dog. I wouldn’t mind if I baby-sat the dog. It’s a cute little thing. It’s an old English sheepdog named Abbey. Anyway, we’ve been looking for things to do with the dog when it needs to be baby — and we found all kinds of options where this dog can live in dog luxury, and it is just amazing. I mean, some of these places will come pick up the dog. If you’re just going to be gone all day and there’s nobody to take the dog out, you take the dog to dog day care. (interruption) No, I’m not… (chuckling) Snerdley is trying to suggest here that I have enslaved myself. No. (interruption) I’ve been out walking the dog. I’ve been out with the dog. But not by my…
(interruption) What? (interruption) No, I did… (interruption) I do not… (interruption) No, I don’t have the pooper scooper. Would you let me stick to the point? Once again I am in the middle of a brilliant point and the staff wants to go all sexist here thinking I’m turning into a slave. This is the cute he is little puppy and it is… Let me tell you what I did. When I learned all of the options there are for this puppy when it has to be left or treated or done something, when it has to go to the vet or whatever. I went online last night, and I started doing some research on this, and I found a place. This is page one. I’m going to give you the details of a brochure from the Park East Animal Hospital in New York. Park East Animal Hospital. Now, I’m doing this because Obama is up there talking about how he’s going to ‘save’ health care and all that by destroying it.
In dog care, in animal care you can have any option you want. It’s all there. You pay for it at whatever level of service you want for your dog. There’s no ‘government option.’ There’s no government involvement, and it’s all affordable — and listen to just page one here from the Park East Animal Hospital. ‘Appointments 7 days a week with evening appointments Monday through Friday. Nursing care 365 days a year, with technicians continuously on duty. Around-the-clock / 24 hour emergency service,’ for your dog or cat. ‘Calls responded to immediately by staff, not answering services or machines.’ It strikes me. Have you ever called some company and a machine answered, ‘Your call is important to us.’ Well, if it was important then how come a machine is answering? Well, at the Park East Animal Hospital calls are responded to immediately by human beings. ‘House calls and supportive home nursing assistance,’ are offered.
‘Affordable preventive medicine and client education on topical issues,’ for your dog or cat. ‘Top grade, board-certified medical and surgical specialists available for consultations.’ Free. ‘Special discounts and free first examination for rescued strays and newly adopted pets from shelters.’ This is health care for pets. Health care for pets from a private practitioner, not a government program, and they’re all over the country, outfits like this. You know, people get as attached to their animals and their pets, especially dogs. I mean, a cat you can leave alone. It will take care of itself. Just leave the food out and litter box and go to town. Cats are independent. But a dog, they become the essence of innocence. They don’t become attached to you. They can’t. Well, the owner thinks the dog can’t survive. These people are smart at these cat and dog hospitals. They understand the relationship between the owner and the pet and they’re there to serve that owner’s desire, and they do it and they’ll charge — and you know people pay for it. They’ll pay for it just as much as they’ll pay for their kids because that’s how important the pets are to them.
So you have health care for pets. You have a private practitioner, not a government program. Whenever you hear, whenever you hear a liberal promise government help that will give you universal care, better care, at lower cost — whenever you hear that — just sit back and you know what your response ought to be? ‘Arf! Arf! Arf!’ Bark like your dog does, because your dog has it, without the governments being involved — and this is not a conclusion that is out of bounds or a stretch. It’s health care. It’s care that’s just as important to pet owners as their own health care is, probably more so because most people think they can handle most illnesses that they have themselves. A dog or cat gets sick, what do you do? They have to take it to the vet and you can find whatever level of service that you want. They even offer special evening appointments on Monday, and that’s just page one of the brochure from the Park East Animal Hospital. So stop and think about that the next time you get involved in any kind of debate about human health care and how the government’s gonna make it better and so forth. Ask yourself: If the same kind of care, whatever price you want to pay, whatever level of service you want, is available for your dog, why is it not available to you?
RUSH: By the way, the health care industry is now one-fifth of the US economy. There’s a dollar amount that you can put to that: $2.5 trillion. That’s how much is at stake, that’s how much, 2.5 trillion, that’s how much wealth the federal government wants to take out of the private sector, how much it wants to deplete from the private economy and add to the government economy, 2.5 trillion. That’s what Obama is actually wanting, is control of $2.5 trillion. And that, my friends, is the way you have to look at it.
All right, we’re going to start on the phones in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. Tom, hello, sir. Great to have you here.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. Nice to talk to you.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: Listen, the point I wanted to make is insurance has to go back to being insurance. You know, the definition of insurance is people share, put their money in a pool, for unexpected risks. Well, a heart attack is an unexpected risk, but drugs and doctor visits are not. You’re just pre-paying for that. It would be like having grocery insurance where you paid a thousand dollars a month and, you know, every time you needed food you called up your insurance company —
RUSH: That’s exactly right. You are right on the money, A-100 percent.
CALLER: Right. I appreciate it. That’s all I wanted to say.
RUSH: See, everybody wants validation from the host. Do you realize I just made Tom’s day by telling him how brilliant his point is. He’s going to live off that for at least a year. Everybody wants validation, everybody wants an attaboy now and then, and what better attaboy can you get than from me, especially on this topic. He’s right on the money. This is what the Safeway CEO’s op-ed in the Journal was about last week when he said we have modeled ourselves at Safeway here after auto insurance, varying levels of premiums, based on how well you drive or how poorly you drive or what a big risk your kids are or what have you. But the argument is the same. Suppose you had to go get hotel room insurance or food insurance, suppose the same concept in health care attached itself to everything else that you consider vital. You know, we can’t live without food, that’s a necessity. Health care has become that in people’s minds. So imagine the same kind of food care provided by the government. In fact, we’ve got it. Food stamps. You know, this is the only country where poverty leads to obesity.
Stop and think of that. And why is that? ‘Cause with the food stamps you go in there and buy the Twinkies, the Milk Duds, six-pack of Bud, bag of potato chips, head home to one of your two color TVs as you live in poverty to watch the NFL on satellite TV, and turn off your cell phone so that you don’t get interrupted. That’s poverty in the United States, compared to elsewhere around the world. By the way, I have a story here in the stack. I shouldn’t laugh. I shouldn’t convey that I draw pleasure from this. (laughing) But some of you who accepted extensions in unemployment compensation have become ineligible for food stamps, because your total compensation has lifted you above the ceiling where you qualify for food stamps. I love it. The reason I love it is because when you depend on Washington, all you’re gonna get is basic survival.