RUSH: Bob in Hewlett, Long Island. Great to have you on the program. You’re up first today. Hello.
CALLER: Rush, good morning. You are a gentleman and a scholar. I’m a diagnostic radiologist, and I am continually appalled at how the liberals are trying to hurt the population that they claim to save. For example, the desire to move mammographies to the age of 50 not only allows cancers to go undetected in people who are most susceptible to severe breast cancer — those between the ages of 40 and 50 — but number two, it helps the attorneys because without tort reform the results of this delay can result in huge payouts to the attorneys who support the liberals in Congress and Obama in particular.
RUSH: Well, how so? Lawsuits because of cancer undetected?
CALLER: Well, absolutely. It’s much harder to find breast cancer in younger women. The glands are denser, they are more lumpy bumpy. It is much harder to find cancer in younger women. Yet the people who have familial histories of breast cancer and are most susceptible to the most severe forms of breast cancer going undetected will now be delayed ten years. Oh, the lawyers won’t care about that! They’ll say, ‘Well, doctor, why didn’t you suspect it?’ ‘Well, homina, homina, homina… The code says 50 is the beginning.’ That doesn’t matter to attorneys. They’re out for blood. They’re out for money. And they could care less about the welfare of their clients, only how much can we shake out of physicians. Remember, Rush —
RUSH: I gotta tell you a little story.
RUSH: I know some trial lawyers down here. I’ve played in charitable golf tournaments with a couple of them. And I got a note from one of them the other day, saying, ‘When are we going to get together for dinner?’
‘I’ve been inviting you and inviting you, and your schedule just doesn’t permit.’
He said, ‘I can’t do it today because I’m in a medical malpractice seminar at a local hotel.’
So these trial lawyers were at a seminar being advised on the latest procedures to sue people like you.
CALLER: You want to laugh? I was at a medical convention and next door was an attorney convention and on their brochure it said: ‘Radiology/Mammography Department: A good place to shake dollars out of doctors.’ This is what we’re up against. That’s why people in my field don’t want to do mammographies anymore. It is the most hazardous of all procedures, and it’s the most likely to save lives — and the people, unfortunately, who develop breast cancer are very angry, very upset, and they are fed by these personal injury and malpractice lawyers into saying, ‘Oh, we can bleed him.’ My lawyer, who’s paid for by the insurance company, isn’t interested in whether I did right or wrong. He’s afraid that it’s going to extend beyond my coverage. And he’ll say to me, ‘Oh, doctor we want to preserve your assets and therefore we’re going to make you settle.’
I said, ‘Settle what? I did nothing wrong.’
‘Well,’ he says, ‘if you bring it before a jury, especially in New York or Brooklyn, forget it. You’re doomed.’
So I only even have half a chance to save myself. Even if I’ve done right, they want to shake the money out of it. Now if they move it to the age of 50… Mind you these are laymen, Rush. These are laymen making these decisions.
RUSH: I know. I know. This panel is a panel of accountant types.
RUSH: The experts who are going to make all these decisions. Let’s not forget what you said at the beginning. It’s amazing how the liberals and the Democrats end up harming the very people they claim to be looking out for, protecting and standing up for.
CALLER: Exactly. I mean this goes through every aspect, through affirmative action, through everything, through all the aspects of life. They are hurting people because they think in their ivory tower that they know better, that they are smarter. For example, let’s say you came to my office and had chest pain. I said, ‘Oh, were you playing golf?’ And you say, ‘Yeah.’ I say, ‘Well, maybe you cracked a rib.’ If I’m using insurance from your company, the insurance company will not allow me to do a chest X-ray to see whether or not you’ve got a pneumothorax or a rib series.
CALLER: Because it was not approved by some clerk in an office someplace.
RUSH: This reminds me of the letter, the story from my hometown paper in Cape Girardeau, the Southeast Missourian. The at-risk seasoned citizen went to his doctor for a swine flu vaccine. By the way, whatever happened to all those stories about the death and destruction and the sick? We don’t see it. There must not be a panic or emergency out there anymore. Anyway this guy went in and he wanted a swine flu vaccine. The doctor had three of them. The doctor said, ‘You gotta call the county board of health. You gotta call a bureaucrat.’ So the guy called a bureaucrat and the bureaucrat said, ‘Sorry, the swine flu vaccine is reserved for women and young children who are at risk.’ ‘Oh, when do I get mine?’ ‘We don’t know, maybe December at the earliest.’ So your insurance company, whoever it is, it’s everybody other than doctors making decisions, and it’s going to get even worse if this debacle ever actually gets signed into law.
RUSH: Ginger in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Hi, Ginger, welcome to the program.
CALLER: Rush Dittohead since the 1980s. Question. Ms. Pelosi came out after the health care bill was signed in the House, and she stated that women would no longer be ‘discriminated against’ when it comes to health care just because they’re women. Now, isn’t this mammogram change a discrimination against women?
RUSH: Oh, by all accounts — by any measure of the word ‘discrimination’ — you would have to say, yes, it is. I have yet to have a mammogram, for example.
CALLER: I’ve been a high risk and been getting mine since I was 35.
RUSH: I know a lot of guys who look like they need a mammogram. I’m not going to name any names.
CALLER: (laughing) Well, men get it, too.
RUSH: (laughing) I know they do. Actually they do. But not only is it discrimination against women, it’s the first sign of rationing health care.
CALLER: Oh, yeah.
RUSH: It’s the first sign of doing everything related to cost. I mean, it’s clear. We had this two weeks ago, folks. I tell you we talked about this two weeks ago when some cancer organization — it might have been the American Cancer Society — first issued a report saying this is coming down the pike, and they couldn’t believe it.
CALLER: No, they couldn’t.
RUSH: Oh, no, wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute! That wasn’t the story. I may have to do a website search here to find this. I think the story was that whatever cancer group it was supported the decision. Wasn’t that what it was? The cancer group supported the decision because they said mammograms early often find stuff that’s not bad, that can cause more harm. You get treated for things that don’t need to be treated, blah, blah, blah. Yeah, the cancer group was for it.
CALLER: Jillian, I can’t remember her last name, she was a very popular actor in the eighties, came on Huckabee and just said, ‘This is foolish,’ and she is very much involved with the American Cancer Society and —
RUSH: I don’t remember Jillian I-can’t-remember-her-last-name, but if she said it on the Huckabee show, it was stated, obviously.
CALLER: Yes. A long conversation about it. She’s had a double mastectomy, and been a survivor for how many years is it now? And, you know, the American Cancer Society is not backing this. The oncologist that I took my husband to yesterday is not backing this.
RUSH: This is the thing. I don’t understand why anybody ever backed it, substantively. I understand why certain groups would back it if they think they’re going to profit from it. But somebody who really, really is concerned about health care and health insurance and treatment, there’s no way anybody would ever support the government getting any more involved in this than it is. In fact, they would support getting the government out of it. But that’s just me. I’m just a conservative, which means I’m an extremist.
RUSH: We went back, it was October 21st on this program, and it was a New York Times story: ‘Cancer Society, in Shift, Has Concerns on Screenings — The American Cancer Society, which has long been a staunch defender of most cancer screening, is now saying that the benefits of detecting many cancers, especially breast and prostate, have been overstated.’ What I said at the time, October 21st on this show was: ‘You’ve gotta be kidding me! After years of being berated and shamed into getting mammograms, getting PSA tests that cost a lot of money, they now tell us it’s overstated?’ The American Cancer Society, says the New York Times, ‘is quietly working on a message, to put on its website early next year, to emphasize that screening for breast and prostate cancer and certain other cancers can come with a real risk of overtreating many small cancers while missing cancers that are deadly.’ Quietly working on a message to put on its website early next year to emphasize that early screening can come with a real risk of overtreating many small cancers.
Now, that’s October 21st. I’ll translate this for you. Back on October 21st the American Cancer Society was all for the notion you don’t need to get all that many tests here. Prostate, mammograms, you don’t need to get all that. Those early tests sometimes are just bad. Jump, fast forward to yesterday where this panel of government experts says we’re going to raise the age for mammograms that we’re going to pay for from age 40 to 50, and the American Cancer Society comes out and has a cow about it. Yet back on October 21st they were essentially for it. I mean, when you come out and issue and you’re preparing your website to tell people, ‘Don’t worry about early screening,’ well, early screening is what? Age 40. Wouldn’t you say age 40 is early screening? And the government experts say, ‘No, no, no! We’re going to move it to 50.’ Don’t you think the American Cancer Society would be supportive of this because back in October the New York Times reported that they were all in favor of banning and getting rid of early testing. (interruption) Well, now, I’m trying to figure that out myself. Why did they change their mind?
What was behind this thing on the 21st of October in the New York Times story? I figured that was the American Cancer Society getting on board Obamacare. October 21st, the New York Times story, the whole point was to save money. We don’t need all these early screenings and it’s not going to find that much anyway! The cancers are not worth treating and we’re gonna miss the big ones, which I still don’t understand how you ‘miss the big ones’ with early screening. Now in less than a month they’ve done a 180. I remain open for somebody to explain this to me. (interruption) You know what? I am never ceased to be amazed at the impact Snerdley believes this radio show has. Snerdley was just shouting at me in the IFB, ‘Well, I’ll explain it to you! The reason they did the switcheroo, the 180, is because you informed all these women back on October 21st that they were against early screening.’ He says, ‘Do you remember all these angry women that called here? Don’t think they didn’t call the American Cancer Society.’
So Snerdley believes that I am behind this 180-degree switcheroo, and if Snerdley’s right — and I have to say he probably is — if Snerdley is right, it means I have saved millions of women’s lives, and the left is not going to like that. (interruption) Well, Snerdley, we don’t want to take it that far. Snerdley wants me to say that I have ‘saved many a breast.’ I would simply say ‘saved many lives.’
Kathy in Milwaukee, you’re next on the Rush Limbaugh program. Hello.
CALLER: Hi, Rush Limbaugh. This is an honor. I have so much to say to you and so little time. Thank you for keeping us well-informed, well-educated and being the voice of America.
RUSH: I appreciate you saying that so much. Thank you.
CALLER: Two quick things. The first reason why I was calling is they were saying they wanted to switch the age from 40 to 50 for screening.
RUSH: Government-paid mammograms, yes.
CALLER: The reason I think — this is an idea, anyway. They figure by the time you’re 50 either it’s too late or you are too old to get screened now, and they have saved lots of money by that.
RUSH: Wait a second. This is a serious charge you are making because if I heard you right, Kathy, —
RUSH: — you are suggesting that at age 50 the government can then say, ‘You know what? The amount of money this is going to cost — if we find that you do have cancer of the breast, the amount of money it’s going to cost — is simply not worth it. We’re denying the mammogram.’
RUSH: Therefore, you are charging that the real objective here is they want women dead.
CALLER: Possibly. The older women that maybe understand how things work in society and family and —
RUSH: Now, we do know from the president’s own mouth that he doesn’t think a 95-year-old woman or 100-year-old woman should get a pacemaker.
CALLER: I remember that.
RUSH: Remember that? And we do know that in the House versions of health care bills, that magically when you get into the 70 years of age the decision on major costly treatment probably would be not to do it. But this is quite a charge you’re making that they would implement this philosophy: At age 50, deny a mammogram on the basis if you test positive for it, we don’t have the money to treat you.
RUSH: Kathy, thank you for the phone call.
RUSH: I appreciate it. This, folks, infuriates me and brings me close to profanity. I want to tell you why. We live in the United States of America. We just talked to a woman in Milwaukee — a standard, run-of-the-mill person. Not a nutcase. Not a conspiracy theorist. We have, in essence, an American citizen actually considering the possibility that her government doesn’t care about saving the lives of women at age 50 and beyond. Now, whether she’s right or wrong is not the point. The point is, I can understand having this fear if you live in China, or if you live in Venezuela, or if you live in ‘Cuber’ or if you live in Russia, I can understand this. If you live in totalitarian regimes where they don’t care about you, but for American citizens to be wandering around with that kind of thought, and it’s a legitimate thought because we know that the government, Obama himself has said (paraphrased), ‘I don’t think we’re going to account for will to live or spirit. Our experts are going to have to use cost as a determining factor here.’ Just like I don’t believe we actually have a pay czar, and this guy’s gearing up for a new round. This guy’s gearing up for more cuts in salary. He’s all excited about it! Kenny Feinberg is out there and he can’t wait to get going on this. In the United States of America!