Plans, Trans and Auto-Repeals
What kind of government says its health care can’t afford to keep people alive — but will pay to change their gender?
Yours! Welcome to the Obama administration, located at the intersection of illogical and outrageous. In two seemingly unrelated stories yesterday, the House helped to highlight just how radically out of touch the President’s policy is with everyday Americans.
For years, the Obama administration has argued that it’s cheaper to “let sick people die” than treat them. And to prove it, they wrote a little something into the President’s signature law authorizing 15 unaccountable bureaucrats to make decisions from Washington about whether you deserve care — and from whom.
They called it the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), or “death panel,” as most people know it. Of course, the administration never hid IPAB’s real agenda. In fact, the head of Medicare at the time, Donald Berwick, was quite blunt about its role in rationing care.
Not surprisingly, the idea of a dozen strangers making health care choices for the rest of the country wasn’t exactly a crowd-pleaser, even for Democrats. While the White House tried to tamp down the criticism, most Americans were on to IPAB’s dirty little secret: that it will cost American lives to save Medicare dollars. Tired of the President trying to inject more government into the doctor-patient relationship, members of the House overwhelmingly voted to kill IPAB. With an almost 100-vote cushion, the repeal sailed through the House with 11 Democrats on board.
Meanwhile, as the House was sending the President a message on his idea of health care, the White House was busy sending its own. In a stunning turn of events, the government’s Office of Personnel Management announced that it had ordered federal employee health insurers to start covering transgender surgery, pills, and other therapy by next January. It’s the latest in a long line of unconstitutional, jaw-dropping ObamaCare mandates: taxpayer-funded sex changes.
If the government thought sick patient care was expensive, it should see the tab for gender “reassignment” surgery, which, at the very least, costs $20,000! Presumably, the White House didn’t want to show up empty-handed for tonight’s LGBT pride bash. And while the decision wasn’t necessarily a surprise, the timing of it was. Two months ago, OPM said it wouldn’t consider a policy change like this until the fall.
In its usual heavy-handedness, instead of recommending the coverage, this President is demanding it. “Effective January 1, 2016,” Director John O’Brien writes, “no carrier participating in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program may have a general exclusion of services, drugs, or supplies related to gender transition or ‘sex transformations.'” Although the coverage is only available to the country’s two million government workers, it’s only a matter of time before the White House expands its sexual chaos to every insurance plan in America.
The National Center for Transgender Equality’s Mara Keisling has long been a fan of forcing taxpayers to foot the bill for biological disfiguration. “With today’s announcement,” Keisling cheered, “transgender federal employees can now access health care that is so fundamental to their well-being and, in the long-term, will make transgender employees happier.” Unfortunately for Mara and her confused counterparts, nothing about this “treatment” will make transgender employees happier.
On the contrary, researchers have found, sex reassignment surgery does nothing to address the fundamental psychological issues underlying transgenderism. In one of the largest studies of its kind, Sweden discovered that in many cases, the surgery may have actually exacerbated the problems. “… [Ten] years after having the surgery, the transgendered began to experience increasing mental difficulties. Most shockingly, their suicide mortality rose almost 20-fold above the comparable non-transgender population.”
Only in Washington does is seem reasonable to create a board that will ration health care to the sick, while also creating a right for sex change coverage that will only increase the ailing population.
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