Thursday, November 13, 2014

Gruber’s ObamaCare Remarks: Altitude Has Affected Attitude

Their altitude has affected their attitude.

Health law critic’s comment on Jonathon Gruber’s remarks that voter stupidity allowed ObamaCare to pass.

Gruber's remarks, which reflect an altitude and attitude of moral superiority of the liberal elite, remind me of Winston Churchill’s remark, “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”

With ObamaCare, attitude makes a huge difference, as reflected in these articles in today’s media.

• “Why Jonathan Gruber Won’t Change the ObamaCare Debate”

• “Third Video Shows Health Law Architect Admitting Deception”

• “ObamaCare Built on Foundation of Lies”

• “Gruber’s Confession Impolitic, But Not Newsworthy”

• “In Praise of Jonathon Gruber’s Honesty”

• “Gruber and the Stupidity of the American Voter”

• “Riley vs. Williams on Health Law: Typical Liberal Superiority”

• “Gruber: the Stupidity of the American Voter”

• “Gruber’s Remarks Give Republicans New Ammo on ObamaCare”

These titles are self-explanatory: some defend Gruber’s comments as devious but trivial, others as mendacious and outrageous.

Gruber explains that his remarks were “inappropriate,” but are excusable because they were given at an academic conference. Apparently the academic community shares a “superiority complex” with the Obama administration.

As for me, there is nothing new about this conflict between the elite and voters. I wrote of my attitude in a May 4, 2011 Medinnovation blog, which read as follows:

"If I were to identify two things that turns physicians off about health reform, it would be the altitude, and a set of attitudes.

This altitude and set of attitudes include.

• Big Brother, government and managerial experts, know best.

• These experts, political and social theorists and analysts, know more than individuals at the point of care.

• A centralized health system reflects collectivist compassion, not repression of individual freedoms and choice.

• Statistics on average population behavior are more important than individual heuristics.

• You cannot trust doctors - their training, their experience, their intuition, their motives.

• You cannot trust patients - their knowledge, their instincts, their choices, their decisions on how to spend their own money.

. You cannot trust markets, which express citizen behavior at street level.

• You can trust data, "In God we trust, all others bring data” as the managerial mantra goes.

• Information – truckloads, wheelbarrows, computer drives, and databases full – will solve all problems, empower all people, improve all outcomes.

• Artificial intelligence is the Holy Grail and will ultimately support, supplement, and even supplant human intelligence.

• Physicians do not have the interests of their patients in mind, they only have their personal interests in mind.

• Physicians, hospitals, and other caregivers, not patients. are responsible for most bad disease outcomes.

• Wisdom on health care matters resides at the top of the pyramid, where power is concentrated, rather than at the bottom of the pyramid, where care is created.

• If we make care free to all, impose enough rules to regulate care, and build a big enough bureaucracy, costs and demand will go down, when in truth, the opposite holds true.

• If we lower physician and hospital rates, discourage specialists and encourage generalists through payment reform, coordinate and concentrate care in large organizations, manage, prioritize, and systematize the behavior of all concerned, and transform the culture from individualism to collectivism, all will be well, the physician shortage will ease, and physicians and the public at large will come to their collective senses and reach consensus that what's good for all is good for each."

Attitude is everything.