Limbaugh Takes on White House for VA ‘Death Book’
by Connie Hair (more by this author)
Posted 08/24/2009 ET
Updated 08/24/2009 ET
On Friday, radio talk show king Rush Limbaugh was on fire over the content of the Veterans’ Administration “Death Book” (pdf), the “end of life counseling” the VA now inflicts on our veterans.
RUSH: “Page 21 from the Death Book, from the VA, reinstated by Obama. ‘What makes your life worth living? Instructions: This exercise will help you think about and express what really matters to you. For each row, check one answer to express how you would feel if this factor by itself described you,’ and there are, you know, A through S here. Here’s A. ‘I can no longer walk but get around in a wheelchair.’ Life like this would be: ‘difficult, but acceptable; worth living, but just barely; not worth living; can’t answer now,’ and the people reading the book are supposed to check off which of these things apply. So, ‘A. I can no longer walk but get around in a wheelchair.’ Eh, difficult. I could take it. ‘It’s worth living, but just barely. Not worth living.’
“‘B. I can no longer get outside — I spend all day at home.’ Can you…? You’re asked to say, you know, to hell with it. I don’t want to live that way. It’s the it’s not worth living if I can’t leave my house. Hell! ‘C. I can no longer contribute to my family’s well-being.’ Eh, that’s not worth living. ‘C. I am in severe pain most of the time. E. I have severe discomfort most of the time (such as nausea, diarrhea, or shortness of breath).’ My God, that can happen when you’re constipated! So you’re sitting here saying, ‘Okay, I’m constipated. Life’s not worth living.’ Well, you don’t have diarrhea when you’re constipated until you do the fix. ‘F. I rely on a feeding tube to keep me alive.’ Eh, that’s not worth living. ‘G. I rely on a kidney dialysis machine to keep me alive. H. I rely on a breathing machine to keep me alive. I. I need someone to help take care of me all of time. J. I can no longer control my bladder. K. I can no longer control my bowels. L. I live in a nursing home.’ I live in a nursing home. Yeah, that’s difficult but acceptable. ‘Worth living but just barely. Not worth living. M. I can no longer think clearly — I am confused all the time.’ That describes half the population. ‘N. I can no longer recognize family/friends.’ That sometimes could be a blessing.
“‘O. I can no longer talk and be understood by others. P. My situation causes severe emotional burden for my family (such as feeling worried or stressed all the time). Q. I am a severe financial burden on my family. R. I cannot seem to ‘shake the blues,’ and then there’s a section, ‘S. Other (write in).’ Here are the instructions: ‘To help others make sense out of your answers, think about the following questions and be sure to explain your answers to your loved ones and health care providers. If you checked ‘worth living, but just barely’ for more than one factor, would a combination of these factors make your life ‘not worth living?’ If so, which factors? If you checked ‘not worth living,’ does this mean that you would rather die than be kept alive? If you checked ‘can’t answer now,’ what information or people do you need to help you decide?’
“What makes your life worth living, and here are the things they want you to assess in the VA Death Book, and Obama has the audacity to say that in his health care plan — and he reinstated this. Bush killed it. Obama reinstated it. He has the audacity to say that there aren’t anything called death panels or such things in his health care plan, and he’s asking veterans to basically say, ‘You know what? I want to check out. To hell with this! I live in a nursing home. Screw it! Pull the plug. Where is Dr. Kevorkian?’ This thing is obsessed with death. It’s obsessed with you deciding, or maybe some influence, that your life isn’t worth living. There’s nothing positive in this.
“It’s not, ‘In these circumstances, what would it take to make you want to live?’ Nothing. It’s all about: ‘What’s it gonna take for us to get rid of you, with you making the decision?’ And, by the way, regardless of your decision, we’re going to be making it for you because of money. You’re going to become a budget statistic. People’s fears are justified. You know, this is simple. This is not a complicated thing for people to understand, and that’s why he’s having major problems with this. The VA Death Book brought back to life by President Barack Obama.”
The Obama cabinet was all over the Sunday talk shows yesterday trying to explain this away. They failed.
Townhall Attendees Still Showing Frustration
Rep. Brian Baird (D-Wash.) held a town hall meeting last week after calling some of his constituents “brownshirts” in early August. Video out on Saturday shows Baird being confronted by a fed-up Marine veteran, David William Hendrick. In the video, Baird at first denied calling his constituents brownshirts, then he said he apologized.
Hendrick was one of 38 people called on at random from what he estimates as 3,000 people who attended. He doesn’t shout (they don’t cut off his microphone), he doesn’t lose his temper. He just speaks truth to power.
Semper Fi, Marine.
Democrats are really struggling to justify their highly-unpopular plan for the government takeover of America’s health care system.
Only 35% of voters told Rasmussen in an August 15 report that passing the current House bill would be better than passing nothing at all. 54% say passing the House bill would be worse than doing nothing.
The House and the Senate have two more weeks at home before reconvening Tuesday, September 8, the day after Labor Day.
Obama Approval Rating Again Sinks to New Lows
In a telephone survey of 500 likely voters with a rolling three-day average, the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Sunday reveals that only 27% of the nation’s voters strongly approve of Barack Obama’s performance as President. A whopping 41% strongly disapprove which gives Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -14. This is the lowest level yet recorded for Obama.
Zogby’s latest polling effort on Friday have Obama’s overall approval rating at a dismal 45%. Likely voters disapprove of the President’s performance by a stunning 51%.
Obama’s sinking numbers reflect growing voter resistance to the government healthcare takeover as well as frustration with Congress. Much of the anger at the Bush administration for not listening to voters — which catapulted Obama from senate obscurity to the White House — is now apparently flowing to him.
And it’s not helping his lapdogs, either.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), up for re-election next year, is on the short end of new polling released yesterday by the Las Vegas Review-Journal. In a state with more registered Democrats than Republicans, Reid is losing to both of his possible Republican challengers, Danny Tarkanian and Sue Lowden.
Tarkanian, a former University of Nevada Las Vegas basketball star, is favored over Reid 49% to 38%. Lowden, who has not begun a campaign but is exploring the option, is the chair of the state Republican Party. Lowden is currently preferred over Reid 45%-40%.
Reid’s approval rating is even lower than Obama’s at a bleak 37%.
|Connie Hair is a freelance writer, a former speechwriter for Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) and a former media and coalitions advisor to the Senate Republican Conference.