Bush Orders Feds to Put a Price on Seniors' Lives

"Cost-benefit analysis" is a term dear to insurance companies, health maintenance organizations, MBAs and others concerned with profit margins. Now AP reports, "The White House Office of Management and Budget has directed the Environmental Protection Agency and other regulatory agencies to factor age into cost-benefit analyses. Seniors and environmentalists are accusing the Bush administration of discriminating against older people... Critics say it's unfair to place a lesser value on environmental regulations that help people who have fewer years to live. They plan to raise questions about the idea Wednesday, when the EPA holds a town meeting in Pittsburgh. [One] 78-year-old environmental activist said, 'It's like they're playing God, to claim they can put a dollar value on me that differs from someone else.'" Hmmm. Created equal--but less so as you age?

Bush Declares War on Sick Old People

George W. Bush is planning major changes to Medicare rules that would make it more difficult for Medicare recipients to appeal the denial of benefits. "Currently, such appeals are decided by administrative law judges. In the last year, 77,388 appeals were filed; the Medicare recipients and the providers who treated them won more than half the cases - 39,796. In the last five years, claimants prevailed in 186,300 cases, for a success rate of 53 percent." Instead of recognizing that this means benefits are being denied far too often for invalid reasons, Bush is trying to change the process so sick old people cannot get the services they need.

Bush's 'Nursing Home Quality Initiative' Designed to Pamper Nursing Home Corporations Providing Shoddy Care

We're not sure the nation can take much more Bush-style compassionate conservatism! In a sales pitch filled with slick euphemisms, Bush's 'nursing home quality initiative' eases up regulations on nursing homes and reduce penalties for homes where care is so bad patients are actually harmed from abuse or neglect. Guess who will be responsible for overseeing nursing home quality in this scheme? Why, the nursing home industry, of course! The whole idea, naturally, is to save the nursing home barons money for their second vacation homes and fourth luxury cars - all at the expense of patients. What's most outrageous is that nursing homes are already notorious for overcrowding, substandard care -- and for cleaning up their acts only for the day or two it takes to marginally pass an inspection.

Bush Spins Backwards Like Runaway Top on Leaked Scheme to Soften Nursing Home Regulations

Just hours after the NY Times released the leaked report that Bush planned to gut quality controls for nursing homes, Ari the Egg was propped before the cameras blathering about how what Bush REALLY meant was how much BETTER he was going to make nursing home care! This brings to mind the British sitcom 'Waiting for God.' In it, there's a greedy, shallow, self-serving 'home for the aged' director named Harvey Baines. Baines is always trying to cut back on "luxuries" for his elderly residents - like food and fresh air. His ever-thwarting adversary, a crusty elderly journalist named Diana, jeeringly refers to him as "The Idiot Baines." Now the US has its our own dark nursing home sitcom, starring "The Idiot Bush."