Keith Olbermann Special Comment: An American cry for help

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February 24, 2010

A very moving Special Comment of Keith’s addressing “death panel” claims from the far right including the personal story of his extremely ill father.

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6 thoughts on “Keith Olbermann Special Comment: An American cry for help

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  5. The Dems are talking about pressuring older people to check out early. None of their talk about enforcing ‘best practises’, etc., has been geared towards empowering people in their own decisionmaking. So what makes anyone think that they are trying to empower older people? They aren’t. That’s a smoke screen. That’s yet another sophisticated Democratic party smoke screen. Shame on Olbermann. Obamacare is about disempowering us and forcing us to pay tribute to the health denial complex. It’s all about that. It’s not about anything else.

    What the heck makes anyone think that Obama and the Dems have suddenly gone righteous about this one issue? They haven’t.

    • Phil. Seriously. I take personal offense at the implication of “pressuring older people to check out early”. I lost my father just 5 months ago. Because we were lucky enough to be able to have the discussion about end of life care, we knew exactly what my Dad wanted, how he wanted it, and exactly what he did not want. When he first became sick we already had a living will and advance directives document in place, so there was no guessing, no questioning what he would want as far as extraordinary measures to keep him alive. He was quite clear about these wishes. They were made 5 years before his illness, and we discussed it further with him as time went on. This was in no way and attempt to pressure him, it was a way to be certain that he would be comfortable and at peace in whatever eventuality he was presented with. We were lucky – my sister and i were able to talk with both Mom and Dad long before any problems arose. But what of those who do not have that opportunity? What of those who wish to talk with their doctor about what options are available to them? I’m not talking about euthanasia, I’m talking about choices like whether to be kept alive on machines, being fed through tubes, being left like a vegetable after a stroke, for instance, when that idea horrifies the patient. Should their wishes not be considered? Should they be ignored, and forced to accept or endure treatment they do not want? The simple payment of a consultation with a doctor to discuss these things is what is being called a “death panel”, and yet it is the very system we have in place now that makes those decisions for thousands of people every day, based not on what they or their loved ones want, but on their ability to pay. We were lucky again, in that my Dad never really suffered. He never spent weeks and months in a hospital bed. But I KNOW that we honored what this 90 year old veteran, father, grandfather, great-grandfather wanted, because he had the chance to make his wishes known in a legal document, that no doctor or insurance company, or, quite frankly, over-zealous and misguided politician or “concerned citizen” could overrule. So take your shame and live in it. This is about life, death, and human dignity. Not politics.

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