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POLICY: David Gratzer, source of Rudy misinformation

My, my. We can’t exactly be surprised that Rudy Giuliani is on the one hand telling yet more porky pies and on the other hand not contributing to the debate in health care—other than shouting “socialized medicine” as loudly as he can.

It’s interesting to note that Giuliani who’s playing a moderate has surrounded himself with some of the most extreme wingnuts in health care, including Sally Pipes and David Gratzer. (Full disclosure, I think David is a very nice guy, but I think he massively misrepresents the facts in his book—as we discussed when I interviewed him. Also Rudy does have Mark McClellan on the list, who’s not an extremist.)

But I can’t understand how Giuliani can possibly believe that surrounding himself with people who think that Medicare is evil socialized medicine (after all it’s single payer for seniors) is going to help him. After all Rudy will need all the moderate votes he can get if he’s around come November 2008.

But according to the Giuliani campaign Gratzer is “an expert at a highly respected think tank”. And Gratzer has the chutzpah to say that Commonwealth is biased! As if Manhattan has no views, and no opinions.

And of course the tosh about cancer survival rates has long been revealed to be crap by John Cohn & Ezra Klein based on Gerald Anderson’s work—differences in survival rats are all based on early screening and doesn’t show up in overall death rates. In other words there’s have a different denominator.

It is amusing that the Brits are now saying that their prostate survival rate is 74% not what Commonwealth reported a while back. But as I’ve explained at nauseum it’s all about picking your disease. If you want to pick a bunch of others, we do much much worse. And of course we’re paying way, way more.

But the real point is not that Giuliani is misrepresenting the cancer rates.

The real point is that he’s the “moderate” acting like the
right-wing nutjob on health care, while the so called left-wing liberal
candidates (Clinton, Obama, Edwards) have their own health care
proposals.

And none of them propose systems that look the least like
“Socialized Medicine” or even the UK’s mostly—but not all—socialized
system.

Personally I’m looking forward to Hillary (probably the only Dem
nasty enough to do so) ripping Rudy a new one on this issue. Just like
she did the other nut job who started talking about socialized medicine a while back.

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10 replies »

  1. It makes no sense that Rudy Guiliani should be allowed to continue spewing his completely bull and completely wrong information that he states as fact. How does this happen? His camp continues the ads, even though the facts are COMPLETELY wrong (so well articulated by Ezra Klein and others)…

  2. Ok so we all know that Republican Candidates don’t give a damn right now about “moderates” in the party because they aren’t the ones who’ll behave like god inspired energizer bunnies when it comes to grass root campaigning and organizing. So what we see now is an appeal to the religious “wing-nuts” who have been out of satisfiying work since the Inquisition ended and need another crusade since the present one in Iraq isn’t going too well. Once the election is under way, whom ever is anointed the next Reagan resurrection will try to cloak themselves as a moderate. And because not many voters are paying attention to the primaries they won’t remember who said what when and will be duly dupped into thinking Republicans are on their side.

  3. OK then Barry. Then I want them to attack Medicare directly! It is after all just socialized insurance. So if Rudy doesn’t approve, then let’s abolish it.
    Think he’s brave enough to say that?

  4. While I am not a fan of Rudy Giuliani as a candidate or of his approach to health insurance reform, I think when he and other Republican candidates use the term “socialized medicine,” the really mean socialized health insurance. That is, insurance financed by taxpayers rather than by employers or individuals. Since the golden rule (he who has the gold makes the rules) will likely apply to taxpayer financing of health insurance, there is some cause for concern. What will be covered? What will the reimbursement rates be? Will there by shortages of certain types of care due to inadequate reimbursement rates and other unintended consequences? Would taxpayer funded vouchers to purchase private health insurance be a better alternative in their view?
    I don’t know where the various candidates come down on the different aspects of the issue. However, if they want to keep using the term, “socialized,” I think they would be on at least somewhat firmer ground if they used it to mean socialized insurance and not socialized medicine or socialized healthcare which it clearly is not.

  5. I was so sad to have missed Stuart when he was “too sick” to come debate me in LA. But I did enjoy his replacement wingnut colleague so much–the guy who wants to abolish public roads and the fire department, let alone Medicare and Medicaid.
    Stuart, you should wear the badge of “wingnut” with pride! Kind of like the way avant-garde gays & lesbians have re-taken the word “queer”. It’s meant with affection. But it is a code to point out to rational people what we’re dealing with. Getting a bunch of money from Mellon Scaife et al and clothing it in an “Institute” doesn’t make Gratzer’s comments any less ridiculous or make them any more true.
    Or are your positions really moderate and centrist all of a sudden?
    But please don’t trouble yourself with actually responding to any of the facts about Giuliani misrepresenting the facts either about cancer care, or the positions of Democrats.

  6. Stuart obviously hasn’t talked to an actual doctor in a long time if he doesn’t know that doctors have been “easing them over the edge” for decades. There’s no euthanasia in America in the same way that Ahmedinijad believes there are no gays in Iran.

  7. Mm. Ad hominem. The attack of choice in today’s short-attention-span politics. So delightful.
    Are you perhaps standing up for “wingnuts” and “nutjobs?” Are you feeling attacked somehow for being a “wingnut” and/or “nutjob?” Are you uncomfortable with your closeted wingnut^2job feelings?
    Stick to the point, Mr. Browning. Healthcare is broken, markets can help, but we’re too busy talking about who doesn’t deserve the care of a doctor to pay attention to the basics. Healthcare is both an opportunity to find gross efficiencies AND a personal service. It’s about how best to serve a patient. Period.
    Back to the house of Rove with you, sir.

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