Hat Tip to Jonah Goldberg at The Corner. (http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=YTc4ZDFkYTcxZmFlYzgzNmRmZDUwY2I1MjQyNjZiY2I=)
This is how the government shuts down debate.
The government is investigating a major insurance company for allegedly trying to scare seniors with a mailer warning they could lose important benefits under health care legislation in Congress.
The Health and Human Services Department launched its investigation of Humana after getting a complaint from Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., a senior lawmaker usually viewed as a reliable ally of the insurance industry.
“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform,” Baucus said Monday, disclosing the HHS investigation.
Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is cooperating with the investigation and stopped the mailer earlier this month, company spokesman Tom Noland said Monday….
It urged seniors to sign up with Humana for regular updates on the health care legislation, and encouraged them to contact their lawmakers in Washington.
In a warning letter to Humana, HHS said the government is concerned that the mailer “is misleading and confusing” partly because the company’s lobbying campaign could be mistaken for an official communication about Medicare benefits.
Yeah let’s not scare senior citizens with the truth about what could happen under ObamaCare.
“…..What we can do is make sure that at least some of the waste that exists in the system that’s not making anybody’s Mom better; that is loading up on additional tests, or additional drugs, that the evidence shows is not necessarily going to improve care….That at least we can let doctors know and your Mom know that, you know what? Maybe this isn’t going to help. Maybe you’re better off not having the surgery, but taking the pain killer.”
By the way, Baucus is the same assclown who warned health care lobbyists not to talk to Republicans and if they did it would be “viewed as a hostile act”.
Recent polls show that seniors are overwhelmingly skeptical of government-run health care programs.
Must be the way government goons force them into Medicare whether they want it or not:
In 1993 and 2002, the Social Security Administration (SSA) issued new rules, unchallenged until now, stating, in effect, that any retiree who elects to opt out of Medicare Part A (the Medicare hospital insurance program) will automatically lose his or her Social Security retirement benefits. The rules were promulgated without being published beforehand in the Federal Register and without benefit of public comment.
The plaintiffs in this case believe that the Clinton administration (in 1993) and the Bush administration (in 2002) acted unlawfully – both, substantively, by violating the Social Security Act and the Medicare Act of 1965, and, procedurally, by violating the federal government’s Administrative Procedure Act of 1946 (Title 5 of the United States Code, beginning at Section 500).
A lawsuit was filed:
Filed on Oct.9, 2008, in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Brian Hall, et al. v. Michael Leavitt, et al. charges the Social Security Administration (SSA) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) with improperly adopting illegal and coercive policies that deny otherwise eligible retirees their rightful Social Security benefits if those retirees choose not to enroll in Medicare.
Lead plaintiff Brian Hall and plaintiffs Richard “Dick” Armey, John Kraus, Lewis Randall, and Norman Rogers seek a restraining order and a temporary and permanent injunction prohibiting SSA and HHS from implementing policies that force American citizens to participate in Medicare, the federal government’s voluntary health insurance entitlement program.
In addition to the legal, due process, constitutional and discrimination issues raised in Hall v. Leavitt , the lawsuit also affects the freedom of individuals to choose the medical services that best meet their needs.
The plaintiffs hope to secure that freedom both for themselves and for future retirees by pursuing this legal action.
I’m going to keep tabs on this. For the Social Security Administration and the Department of Health and Human Services to wield this kind of power over individual rights is a travesty.
The more we permit government to legislate its way into our lives, the less rights we have.