Politifact wrote a pretty good explanation recently concerning the difference between vouchers and premium support in the context of Medicare reform. Then Politifact reached a conclusion exactly the opposite of everything it wrote in the column proper. Politifact says:
“"But the Romney-Ryan approach pretty much matches the dictionary definition of a voucher, "a (written affidavit or authorization)... a form or check indicating a credit against future purchases or expenditures... (a coupon issued by the government)" We think that describes the general way Ryan's plan would work."”
I'm sure unintentionally Politifact left out out of its conclusion two important parts of the dictionary definition of voucher that it had included at the beginning of its article. So I put them back in above in italics in parentheses. I'm sure Politifact did not leave out those key words to try to fool its readers.
But I still have a couple of questions given Politifact's absurd conclusion based on the dictionary definition of voucher provided by Politifact and other facts stated in its column:
- What is Politifact's understanding of what the Wyden-Ryan "written affidavit or authorization... a form or check... or coupon" will look like?
- Will it be an actual piece of paper mailed to 50,000,000 of us seniors or is it a credit card like "food stamps" (or will the government just deposit some moeny in our bank accounts netted against our Social Security amount)?
- Will I get the money monthly or annually (because those of us making less than about $1300 a month in 2012 dollars can change our Medicare insurance carrier more than once a year and every proposal I have seen says that sort of assistance for low income seniors will continue)?
- Can I take the money to any insurance agent I want and buy any insurance I want?
- Could a fairly well off senior decide to self insure himself or herself for the first $10,000 in healthcare expenses and get very low cost insurance just to cover catastrophic expenses (pocketing the difference)?
- Could a very poor senior sell his or her voucher to me so that I could use it to buy more insurance (and the poor senior could buy Ripple the way food stamp recipients do)?
Actually Ryan's plan specifically answers all of the above questions in the negative. But maybe Politifact discovered another Medicare Reform Plan that worked differently, a plan that included a food-stamp-like or school-voucher-like mechanism.
And then, in its crowing achievement of deceit under the subhead “Looking at linguistics,” Politifact says
"the 1995 paper (where the term premium support was allegedly introduced) didn’t say that premium support wasn’t a voucher -- it said that it wasn’t a "pure" voucher. This means that "premium support" may be seen as just one type of voucher, not the opposite of a voucher."
This Democratic party/Obama-re-election campaign crap to deceive and scare the hell out of seniors has gone beyond. And Ryan and the Republicans are doing nothing to stop it.
-- Dennis Byron