Really, this is chilling:
Reich’s explanation is that we cannot “continue forever to pay whatever amount of money was required to keep everyone alive forever.” Well, no one is proposing to “keep everyone alive forever,” of course, so Reich is just raising strawman arguments to knock down. No one should take this disingenuous brand of argument seriously.
Those who listen to Reich’s speech are right to be concerned as to how it gets decided which old people live and which old people die. For that matter, they are right to be concerned about some of Reich’s other talking points, like the one telling us that young people ought to pay more for health insurance (wasn’t health care reform supposed to control costs?), or the one telling us that the government should work to keep the costs of pharmaceutical products low, thus ensuring that there will be less innovation in the pharmaceutical industry (and preventing us from fighting diseases more effectively in the future).
If Robert Reich’s vision of health care reform is the one that we are in for, then it makes the opposition to health care reform that much more understandable. We ought to thank Reich for his blunt warnings on what “reform” would actually mean for the country. Of course, if we fail to stop this particular legislative package despite Reich’s warnings about what it would entail, we will have no one to blame but ourselves.