Opinion

How AARP plays America’s seniors for fools

Maybe you have seen or heard of the Obama administration’s TV ad with Andy Griffith telling seniors how wonderful Obamacare is going to be for them, and how it preserves Medicare. The ad is a fraud, and Andy Griffith has no idea what he is talking about—sounds more like Deputy Barney Fife than Sheriff Andy Taylor.

The ad is intended to cover up the awful truth confirmed in official reports released by the Obama administration last week.  The Medicare payment rates for the doctors and hospitals serving seniors will be cut by 30 percent during the next three years. By 2019, those Medicare payment rates will be lower than under Medicaid, a program in which doctors already are refusing to treat new and sometimes old patients.  Thus, under ObamaCare payment rates for Medicare will be only one third of what will be paid by private insurance and only half of what is paid by Medicaid, where as a result of low reimbursement rates the poor often can’t even find access to any care, let alone high quality care.

This pending health care crunch for old people is the result of Obamacare’s $575 billion in cuts to Medicare during the next 10 years ($2.9 trillion over the next 20 years).  Indeed, the official report of the Medicare Board of Trustees released last week shows that Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) is ultimately cut by 60 percent; Part B (physician services) is cut by 43 percent.

If the government is not going to pay the doctors and hospitals for health care services provided to seniors under Medicare, then seniors are not going to get any where near the health care under Medicare they now rely on and expect. The Medicare Chief Actuary reports that even before these cuts occur already two-thirds of hospitals are losing money on Medicare patients. Health providers will either have to withdraw from serving Medicare patients, or eventually go into bankruptcy.

But you won’t hear any of this from AARP.  Instead, AARP highlighted the administration’s propaganda line in an August 5 press release responding to last week’s reports saying, “The Medicare Trustees’ Report issued today contains some important good news.  It finds the financial outlook for Medicare has been strengthened significantly as a result of legislative changes, increasing the solvency of the Trust Fund from 2017 until 2029.”  AARP never explains that the so-called “trust fund” is a fraud and that the new-found solvency is a direct result of ObamaCare’s Medicare cuts.

Instead, AARP has been busy setting seniors up for the Obama administration’s Obama-Con propaganda ploy.  AARP has been subtly building up Andy Griffith’s image in recent weeks. The July/August issue of the AARP Magazine, for example, features “Whistle If You Love Andy Griffith: As the Andy Griffith Show turns 50, America still finds comfort in its favorite small town sheriff.”

The Magazine also offers us the Andy Griffith Quiz. “Remember what Barney called Aunt Bee’s pickles?” the Magazine asks.  On July 9, 2010, the AARP Magazine posted “Cooking with Aunt Bee: An Andy Griffith fan shares mouth watering recipes for biscuits, pancakes, and pickles.”