Say what you like about the tax problems that forced former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle to withdraw from consideration for HHS secretary and criticize his policies all you want, but the Washington Times has officially gone too far. In an editorial today, the favorite paper of the lunatic fringe on the far right compares Daschle’s proposals for increasing the efficiency of healthcare through IT to a Nazi program.
“This notion is fully in the spirit of the partisans of efficiency but came from a program instituted in Hitler’s Germany called Aktion T-4. Under this program, elderly people with incurable diseases, young children who were critically disabled, and others who were deemed non-productive, were euthanized. This was the Nazi version of efficiency, a pitiless expulsion of the ‘unproductive’ members of society in the most expeditious way possible,” the Times says.
The article is accompanied by a photo of Adolf Hitler.
There almost was a cogent argument here. “One provision causing increasing concern is the future role of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, who will be in charge of collecting and monitoring the health care being provided to every American,” the Times says, before launching into its Coulteresque polemic. There are legitimate concerns about privacy in the health IT portion of the economic stimulus plan.
Yes, I know the far right likes to shock, particularly in this new era of full Democratic control of the federal government, but come on. The fact that the current national coordinator, Dr. Robert Kolodner, is Jewish, makes this extra offensive.