Honestly, when Democrats started to make a fuss about Nevada Republican Senate candidate Sue Lowden’s comments about “bartering” for medical care, I thought the attacks were unfair. Presumably, Lowden had merely misspoken, and really meant “bargaining” rather than “bartering.”
Here’s what she said:
Those doctors who you pay cash, you can barter, and that would get prices down in a hurry. And I would say go out, go ahead out and pay cash for whatever your medical needs are, and go ahead and barter with your doctor.
Now on one level that’s still a pretty stupid idea: “Sorry, Doc, but if you really need $5000 to do that that procedure I’m just going to have to take my business to the discount doctor down the street” isn’t really a plausible thing to say. When you’re in a doctor’s office, you want to be dealing with a healer, not a used-car salesman.
Still, there’s a grain of sense hiding in that pile of horse manure: health care providers would certainly have to charge less if more of the cost were coming out of the patient’s hide. So, assuming that Lowden had meant bargaining and not bartering, I decided to let it lie. After all no one would seriously propose “bartering,” as in offering your doctor a chicken for a check-up.
The Dems are, for once, all over it; apparently the DSCC plans a Chickens for Checkups website (though I can’t find it on line yet). And there’s more to this than sheer stupidity. Apparently Lowden is a gazillionaire, who could write checks for her own health care. Can you cay “out-of-touch plutocrat”?
Let’s start asking other Republicans whether they agree with Ms. Lowden.