Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Pardon me Doc: Chart, Please?

Folks following along at home may recall the infamous "Doc Fix" that was touted as a way to control rising health care costs. Briefly: for the past dozen or so years, Medicare has been slated to cut physician reimbursements by 21%. And every time it comes up, it gets far.

But that hasn't stopped the proponents of ObamaCare© from (disingenuously) pointing to these "savings" as a means of paying for that train-wreck. How do we know that the numbers are fudged? Well, Cato's Michael Cannon knows that a picture (or, in this case, a chart) is worth tens of millions:

As Michael explains: "the administration proposes to delay these cuts until 2014 at a cost of $54 billion. As shown by the black line, the administration proposes to pay for this additional spending by reducing the rate of spending growth in other areas of Medicare by $62 billion over the next 10 years. Note that only 6 percent of these Medicare "cuts" will occur in 2012 and 2013. The other 94 percent of the "cuts" will come after the administration has spent the $54 billion it wants to spend. Note also that the vast majority of the "cuts" would take effect after Barack Obama is no longer president." [emphasis added]

Perfidy, thy name is PresBo.

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