Letters to the Editor

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HEALTH CARE: Who paid for Cheney’s transplant?

Letter by Rylla R. Goldberg, Tacoma on March 27, 2012 at 11:04 am with 81 Comments »
March 28, 2012 1:37 pm

It’s reassuring to former Vice President Dick Cheney’s family and close associates, I’m sure, to know he is recovering so well from transplant surgery. One can’t help wondering, however, if he paid for this surgery himself or if he used his federally funded, full-coverage insurance.

It seems fitting that the U.S. Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments about aspects of Obama’s health care plan, which provides insurance to millions of American who otherwise would not have been able to afford even basic coverage.

Leave a comment Comments → 81
  1. LornaDoone says:

    My guess – his retirement health care program paid for by taxpayers and medicare, paid for by taxpayers.

  2. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Gee, Rylla, don’t remember your letter asking the same question of millionaire x40, Bill Clinton when he had either of his by-pass surgeries.

    Who knows, maybe Warren Buffet paid for it… more likely his secretary.

  3. LornaDoone says:

    Bill Clinton didn’t fight against health care benefits for all.

    I guess FOX didn’t mention that.

  4. LornaDoone says:

    I know you just overlooked this stuff on the internet:

    The Clinton health care plan was a 1993 healthcare reform package proposed by the administration of President Bill Clinton and closely associated with the chair of the task force devising the plan, First Lady of the United States Hillary Rodham Clinton.

    Bill Clinton had campaigned heavily on health care in the 1992 U.S. presidential election. The task force was created in January 1993, but its own processes were somewhat controversial and drew litigation. Its goal was to come up with a comprehensive plan to provide universal health care for all Americans, which was to be a cornerstone of the administration’s first-term agenda. A major health care speech was delivered by President Clinton to the U.S. Congress in September 1993. The core element of the proposed plan was an enforced mandate for employers to provide health insurance coverage to all of their employees through competitive but closely regulated health maintenance organizations.

  5. APimpNamedSlickback says:

    The retirement benefits for former vice presidents is different than that for former presidents. Former presidents get a specific package of benefits. Former vice presidents – just like members of Congress and other federal employees – get retirement benefits based on a number of factors specific to the individual; most significantly, length of federal service. According to Wikipedia, Cheney has a total of 24 years of federal service, presumably qualifying him for the same benefits that any other federal employee of 20+ years gets. I don’t know if that includes government-paid/subsidized health insurance, but if it does, that’s something he’s earned, like any other federal employee with that length of service. He’s old enough to qualify for Medicare, but wealthy enough that he can certainly afford other, private insurance.

    I don’t know if the same is true for former VPs, but former presidents are entitled to use military healthcare facilities. They do not get free healthcare, though. All healthcare costs for former presidents are billed to the individual. Former presidents do not get government-paid/subsidized health insurance. They have to buy their own like most everyone else.

    Either way, what difference does it make? He didn’t get any special treatment in getting his transplant, and it was either paid for with his own money, or with a policy he earned the right to be on.

  6. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Bill Clinton didn’t fight against health care benefits for all.

    And Cheney did?

    Go back to the huffpo and bring us a link.

    Socialized medicine was never an issue facing any of the administrations Cheney served under. Not your best effort, Lardna.

    And the letter is right on cue from the Center for American Progress talking points memo.

    Weak.

  7. LornaDoone says:

    Let’s see. I demonstrated that Bill Clinton supported health care issues. Now I have to demonstrated that Dick Cheney didn’t? I guess all the burden of proof is on me, because I noted that taxpayers paid for Cheney’s heath care, not to mention the development of his most recent surgery.

    I guess conservatives don’t have to prove anything. They just spew.

  8. Vox – What Cheney faught for was deregulation of all heath insurance providers.

  9. LornaDoone says:

    This should demonstrate a pattern:

    Cheney supports the GOP platform, which says about health care:

    “Truly positive market forces occur when individuals have the ability to make individual marketplace decisions.”

    “We therefore strongly encourage support of the emerging concepts of defined contribution plans and medical savings accounts.”

    “Individuals should be free to manage their own health care needs through Flexible Savings Accounts (FSAs) and Medical Savings Accounts (MSAs).”

    “These initiatives make a government takeover of health care as anachronistic as surgery without anesthesia.”

    “We will make these accounts the vanguard of a new consumer rights movement in health care.”

    “Our overall philosophy is to trust state and local government to know what best suits the needs of their people.”

    “We believe the federal government should respect the states’ traditional authority to regulate health insurance, health care professionals, and health practice guidelines through their medical boards.”

    http://www.ontheissues.org

  10. BlaineCGarver says:

    God, I hope he got a minority, liberal heart….LMAO!!!!

  11. BlaineCGarver says:

    God, I hope he got a minority, liberal heart….LMAO!!!! It would have never been used, so it’s good as new.

  12. Cheney is a very wealthy man courtesy of his time with Halliburton. If it was paid for by taxpayers, so be it. Benefits are benefits and we shouldn’t let a person’s politics affect how they are administered. I am not a Cheney fan, but I wish him and his family well. He was on the transplant list for over 20 months, which is long. So, I don’t believe he received any “special” favors, outside of very good medical care. Someone without those benefits though—probably, 20 months or not, would be dead by now.

  13. sevenstrokeroll says:

    It is truely amazing to read people who are so ignorantly and blindly against their own best interests and then read how they ridiculously advocate for the hypocrisy handed down from their banal leadership and the Faux News Network.

    It would be better if those that once called themselves “tea baggers”, requested that government keep their hands off their medicare/medicaid and can’t do low level math (more participants = lower rates) became informed. If that happened, nobody would need to mandate anything in order to benefit all of us.

  14. LornaDoone says:

    When I start asking Vox for a critique’ on my posts, I’ll be dead and gone.

    You can’t get much more direct than this quote from Cheney – ““We believe the federal government should respect the states’ traditional authority to regulate health insurance, health care professionals, and health practice guidelines through their medical boards.” – in terms of knowing his stand on the Health Care Reform Act.

    Of course, I’m dealing with someone who, when given the exact place on an audio tape to hear a racial slur, Vox can’t seem to hear what the rest of the world can hear.

    As to my prior comment, if noting that Vox is avoiding defending its own statement is “circular reasoning”, I’d love to see its take on the accuracy of Biblical quotes.

    Maybe I’m not being vague enough for a conservative to comprehend.

  15. Since cheny has never had a real job in his life and has the best health care package in the world, one that he would deny to everyone in the country, paid for by you and I the tax payer, guess who paid for his heart that he will use for a year or two if hes lucky.

    It’s a real shame.

  16. LornaDoone says:

    sevenstrokeroll – you have hit the nail on the head. These people, in their quest to make their ideology “right”, will pull out plums like “prove that I’m wrong” and other fine quotes.

    A “Tea Party Leader” was on Chris Matthews show yesterday. Every question Chris asked had to asked twice because she was so determined to just spew the party line, as opposed to just having a dialog on the subject.

    Meanwhile, like it or not, the real issue is constitutionality and from what the other guest said – one that didn’t come prepared with talking points – it seems that there is no constitutional issues with the insurance mandate.

    I am amused at how they support a heath care mandate (vaginal ultrasound), but claim an insurance mandate to be unconstitutional.

  17. The issue should not be whether or not the former Vice President is entitled to health care, Medicare, federal retiree health care, etc. The issue is whether or not the ordinary folks should be entitled to the same care. There are too many people believing they are entitled to their health care, but, others are not.

  18. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Okay, now I’m apparently not allowed to respond to the shortbread cookie, so let’s try again – more generically:

    The posts at 3/ 27, 12:12 and 12:20 are textbook examples of circular logic… in case anyone’s interested.

    Geeez.

  19. LornaDoone says:

    (shakes head)

    I’m not going to provide the answers and explain them also

  20. GHTaxPayer says:

    Should a person who has served their country in the military and as second highest elected office be given healthcare? YES.

    Should an able bodied adult who refuses to work, pays zero taxes and wants free food and transportation be given healthcare? NO.

    Should the federal governmnet be sticking its nose in states rights issues? NO.

    Should you believe anything a liberal democrat says? NO.

  21. TheLawOfUnintendedConsequences says:

    Just a thought:
    Since some 10% to 20% of our population is composed of illegal immigrants who do not pay for insurance under current programs, what does Obamacare do to compel those here illegally to pay in the future?
    Hmmm…

  22. TheLawOfUnintendedConsequences says:

    Question: How does Obama propose getting the illegal immigrants to pay under his program?
    I am quite sure they make up a majority of that 20% of freeloaders he seemed so concerned with on television…

  23. concernedtacoma7 says:

    LD- going back to your first partisan, childish post, didn’t Cheney pay into the system all those years? Is that not the argument you use for all entitlements?

  24. menopaws says:

    Dear GH taxpayer—Cheney NEVER served in the military………That is a fact—Colin Powell did, Bush did, Rumsfeld did—-Cheney did NOT. Don’t post until you are correct in the facts. Number 2-I am not arguing his health care—but, your neighbor without health insurance would die with the same condition and would NOT be placed on the transplant list. 3. States right issue–what planet do you live on??? Health care makes up 8% of the GDP……..States rights—-where do the states get most of the medicaid money from??
    Here it is pure and simple. I am tired of my health care rates going up, my husband’s corporation’s health care rates going up because of those without insurance. The bigger the pool, the lower the costs. So, making insurance available to everyone lowers the rates………It doesn’t impinge on my freedoms to have lower rates and help everyone get needed health care. It is a win-win………
    Those who scream about their freedoms all have insurance and don’t give a damn about anyone else. So much for that “Christian” nation crap……….This is simple stuff until the right spins it into something ugly………..You don’t want to be forced to pay for health insurance—pay the damn penalty so that pool of dollars can cover your trip to the emergency room….the rest of us are tired of paying those bills for you. And, I might add—I’m a liberal who believes in Obama-care. It’s smart and solves a serious problem this nation refuses to even acknowledge…..Ever escalating health care costs will bankrupt us within a decade…….We have a lot of veterans who will need medical care and I would much rather see my tax $$$ go to them than some Tea Bagger who whines about his “freedom”

  25. It is difficult to believe that this question ever arose. All it, and this thread do is demonstrate how absurd the partisan polarization nonsense has gone. This is pathetic.

  26. took14theteam says:

    Hey beerBoy, is it okay if I reuse my joke from the other day now? You remember, the one you chastised me on for not being funny under that context….

  27. LornaDoone says:

    “concernedtacoma7 says:
    March 27, 2012 at 2:40 pm LD- going back to your first partisan, childish post, didn’t Cheney pay into the system all those years? Is that not the argument you use for all entitlements?”

    When did I say that Cheney didn’t deserve his benefits? I didn’t.

    It appears that you are deflecting when you say things like “You see the worst in people, most likely a reflection of yourself”

    http://blog.thenewstribune.com/letters/2012/03/26/killing-of-trevyon-about-guns-not-race/#comments#storylink=cpy

    on another thread. You see, all I pointed out is that Cheney’s health care coverage, in one way or another, was probably paid 100% by taxpayers. I didn’t say that was wrong, you ASSUMED and you know what happens when you ASSUME – so leave ME out of it.

    Now, as to Cheney “paying into it”, I’m certain that he did as a taxpayer, but I’m not sure about copays and premium payments by elected officials. Maybe you can contribute that.

    Meanwhile, you’ll save yourself a lot of face if you’d just quit trying to best me on every thread and end up looking like a fool.

    You’d save face by not trying to defend the indefensible.

  28. took14theteam says:

    Didn’t BHO campaign on the “Hope and Change” of reuniting America? Didn’t he promise to end the partisan divide?

    He has done a fine job with that now hasn’t he….

  29. took14theteam says:

    Maybe if you WERN’T on EVERY thread, he wouldn’t have to “best” you?

    As if you were the “best”….

  30. concernedtacoma7 says:

    My face is just fine, k_n$s. You do not like your weak arguments used against you. Sorry casio boy, but do not post garbage if you do not want it turned on you.

  31. LornaDoone says:

    BEST
    verb
    13. to get the better of; defeat; beat: He easily bested his opponent in hand-to-hand combat. She bested me in the argument.

    It becomes tedious when I have to resort to teaching 5th grade level English to be understood. To make it more understandable, I’ll dumb down:

    “don’t try to do gooder then me” (multiple misuses intended)

    Uh, CT7 – there was no argument. Just an assertion.
    I could look those words up for you if you’d like.

    You tried to make an argument where there was none.

    Failed. Massively. Unless you can prove that my assertion of taxpayers paying for Cheney’s health care is wrong. If so, go for it and quit with your whiny gamesmanship.

    Oh dang, I did it again. Another big word.

  32. Looks like a government healthcare plan worked for Cheney.

  33. stumpy567 says:

    We can all argue over who is going to pay for health care for eternity.That is not going to change the fact that the system is broken,and costs will only escalate no matter who pays the bill.
    When we establish tort reform, keep bad physicians from hiding behind the cloak of the AMA, Establish standards for the cost of tests and procedures, and finally make the pharmacutical companys compete with the world market for medication costs. I will be happy to talk about healthcare reform. Untill then it’s all academic.
    All this healthcare reform crap is doing is shifting costs. nothing more. We are already paying for the uninsured through medicare and medicaid. Show me a hospital who turns away those in need. They get government funding that ensures they won’t refuse attention to anyone.

  34. Can one of you biting conservatives explain to me what is bad about having health needs met? We already spend it. We spend hundreds of thousands of dollars or millions each to give elderly a few more months or years of a poor quality life. How do you rationalize that socialized medicine? Isn’t that money down the drain in socialized medicine? They are old, benefit nothing in society, (they don’t work) and they cost a fortune. IF we can rationalize covering them, why not a little more? We are socialists already. MEDICARE IS SOCIALIZED, SINGLE PAYER MEDICINE!

  35. took14theteam says:

    Yo cookie DB (OOP’s you might call me racist cause I said “Yo”)

    I knew what you meant by best.

    But your BTDT attitude just doesn’t cut it anymore.

    Get a life. or is THIS your life?

  36. took14theteam says:

    So if your at the age of 70, it is okay for YOUR government to decide if you are “worthy” to have medial treatment?

    Cost-benifit analysis?

    You know damn well that treatment will be withheld for the older people. And, LD is getting close, so why does he support it?

  37. The fact that everyone is arguing about who pays and who doesn’t and that there seem to be far too many options for which an explanation is unknown leads me to believe that the ACA is a best first step toward a single payer system for health care. It sounds to some like socialism, but it is not even close.

  38. sumyungboi says:

    This letter is pathetic and disgusting, and I’m surprised that the TNT, as friendly to progressive / marxist politics as they lean, lowered themselves to even publish this thinly veiled hate speech.

  39. Hey Sunyungboi: Quick, what’s a Marxist? Give direct examples of “Marxist politicians” please, so those of us who are not insane can begin to understand your process.

  40. “So if your at the age of 70, it is okay for YOUR government to decide if you are “worthy” to have medial treatment?”

    WHAT are you talking about took14 forthe team? Do you know ANYTHING about Medicare? They are not denied treatments because of their age. That is crazy talk dude.

  41. Frankenchrist says:

    Draft-dodging chickenhawks like “What a Dick” Cheney should not be permitted to received taxpayer-paid benefits.

  42. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Draft-dodging chickenhawks like “What a Dick” Cheney should not be permitted to received taxpayer-paid benefits.

    Guess that leaves Clinton out too, ‘eh frankendick.

  43. LornaDoone says:

    Who in the heck is that?

  44. LornaDoone says:

    “Looks like a government healthcare plan worked for Cheney.”

    There is the point to the entire thread. Of course, others can’t find anything to say about the subject.

    I can’t wait for the whining and crying about deleted comments.

  45. LornaDoone says:

    WOW!

    Great band! I love that song! I saw those guys at Freedom Fair a few years ago. Huge crowd at the mainstage. Very hip show.

    That’s really a cool website. All the great bands of the Northwest. A regular walk down memory lane for those of us that enjoy great music.

  46. concernedtacoma7 says:

    That is a terrible band. What a loser on the cover. A creepy old man, looks like it was pulled off the Megan Law site.

  47. The hate and bile coming from the left wing is palpable on this topic. True colors are showing. Not that they hide it well anyway.

  48. Frankenchrist says:

    The GOP’s woman problem is that it has a serious problem with women.

  49. Frankenchrist says:

    The GOP’s woman problem is that it has declared a War against Women.

  50. Frankenchrist says:

    The GOP’s woman problem is that it wants to perform involuntary vaginal probes on all women who want to terminate their pregnancy.

  51. Frankenchrist says:

    The GOP’s woman problem is that their health plan only covers mandatory chastity belts for women.

  52. concernedtacoma7 says:

    The left has to resort to childish tactics since they cannot debate their side without lying, deception, racism, etc.

  53. “All it, and this thread do is demonstrate how absurd the partisan polarization nonsense has gone.”

    But letting the vatican dictate national policy isn’t ‘absurd partisan polarization’?

  54. monmornQB says:

    This reminds me of all the GOP supporters that think healthcare should only be for a select few but then roll their sleeves up for a state sponsored flu shots.
    There is NO integrity in US politics. Show me a Republican politician that actually supports fiscal conservation or small gov when it isn’t convenient to partisan politics. Aside from Ron Paul but then that’s why he isn’t getting any support from the Party or the corporations that control the party and their so called fair and balanced media propaganda machine.
    The GOP and DNC are equally corrupt when it comes to wasting tax dollars and urinating on the Constituion.
    Silly sheople think for yourselves.

  55. The hate and bile coming from the right wing is palpable on this topic. True colors are showing. Not that they hide it well anyway.

  56. The right has to resort to childish tactics since they cannot debate their side without lying, deception, racism, etc

  57. LornaDoone says:

    “concernedtacoma7 says:
    March 27, 2012 at 11:03 pm That is a terrible band. What a loser on the cover. A creepy old man, looks like it was pulled off the Megan Law site.”

    Which band on the website did you play with? You must be in one of the legendary bands of the Northwest on the website, aren’t you? Oh, am I to guess that you don’t have any talent and are resorting to childish tactics since you cannot debate?

    Since I’ve seen that band at Freedom Fair and know that members of the band are award winners (blueswoman of the year 1999, Washington State Blues Society), I know the quality of the act, thus I know that you are just – how did you say it, oh yeah – resorting to childish tactics.

    What were you saying now about Dick Cheney, since that is the topic of this thread? Did you claim that Dick Cheney didn’t get his medical paid for by taxpayers? I can’t seem to find what you said about this thread, other than complain about others comments.

  58. LornaDoone says:

    monmornQB – Welcome to the Ron Paul supporters – waving their copy of the constitution that deleted the 13th amendment. Oh that’s right. Someone just used Paul’s name and he had nothing to do with that.

  59. “The posts at 3/ 27, 12:12 and 12:20 are textbook examples of circular logic… in case anyone’s interested.”

    What a great job of proving your case.

  60. LornaDoone says:

    Morning ehill!

    It was circular logic because she said so. Why? BECUZZZZZ!!!

  61. “The left has to resort to childish tactics since they cannot debate their side without lying, deception, racism, etc.”

    ROFLMAO – coming frmo the author of “Sorry casio boy, but do not post garbage”, that’s hysterical! Thanks for such a great laugh! You continue to crack me up!

  62. LornaDoone says:

    ehill – you missed when CT7 went off on that great band that Vox posted the website about. I’m guessing that Vox must be the person that throws her panties and hotel key on the stage since she appears to be obsessed with posting that website. The band throws them back.

  63. ’bout time Cheney had a change of heart.

  64. GHTaxPayer says:

    Those that refuse to pay for their own stuff in this life will ALWAYS find a sympathetic ear from others that refuse to pay for their stuff. MISERY LOVES COMPANY.

  65. Frankenchrist says:

    Republicans want the government out of health care…except for involuntary transvaginal probes.

  66. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    “The only thing more pathetic than using multiple screen names is is the MO of never adding anything to the discussion but, instead, offering up a continual stream of unsolicited blathering critiques of other contributor’s comments.”
    Foghorn Leghorn school of chicken sheet.

    Actually, I beg to differ with Foghorn; having to explain the obvious to those perched on a thing, dead branch of false primacy is pretty pathetic as well. But since 2nd-vowel-preceeding-prominance is unable to grasp (shocking, I know), and my original reply to the first example of extremely-high-fat-content-cookie’s example of circular logic was deleted for a misspelling of her name, here we go again:

    According to extremely-high-fat-content-cookie’s 3/ 27 @ 12:20 fallacy:
    Dick Cheney is opposed to, and fought “against health care benefits for all” because Dick Cheney supports the GOP platform which supports state’s rights with regards to questions of heal care reform.

    Okay, if that’s not a circular argument, it is patently absurd. And not just on its face, but also because Dick Cheney has already voiced his opposition to certain planks of the GOP platform.

    http://www.frcblog.com/2012/02/what-dick-cheney-gets-wrong/

    Prominences and cookies should stick to what they know best; slippery slopes and pull dates.

  67. “Those that refuse to pay for their own stuff in this life”

    Like dick cheney?

  68. LornaDoone says:

    yawn

    “We believe the federal government should respect the states’ traditional authority to regulate health insurance, health care professionals, and health practice guidelines through their medical boards.” – Dick Cheney

    yawn

  69. LornaDoone says:

    Or was Cheney against it before he was for it or vice versa?

  70. LornaDoone says:

    “No atheists in a foxhole”

    “No complainers about public paid health care after a heart transplant”

  71. concernedtacoma7 says:

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with that statement. Please break it down for the group and share that knowledge.

    No, it does not call for big govt solutions to all of society’s problems. It is what the Founders established with the Constitution. You know the document I am talking about? The one the left hates? I can mail a copy to your band if you need it.

  72. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    Yawn – it’s the new beeteedeetee. Great response, shortbread.

    And speaking of hate, have you seen all of Cheney’s well-wishers on the wacko leftist sites? No haters there.

    Gotta’ love those “open-minded, peace-loving, civilized” lefties. You stay classy, wonkette.

  73. “And speaking of hate, have you seen all of Cheney’s well-wishers on the wacko leftist sites? No haters there.”

    What a great example of the “but all the other kids are doing it” excuse! Stay funny, Voxie.

  74. I love how right wing people always associate the left wing with hippies and then claims we are being hypocritical if we show any reactions at their lies and stupidity. Hey, maybe we are sick of turning the other cheek for the lowest common denominators in our society: conservatives. Quick joke: What’s less educated about the issues and more out of touch than a republican? Answer: Nothing.

  75. Question: who pays? Answer: The same folks who pay for Bill Clinton’s Viagara prescription.

  76. Candles16 says:

    The answer is obvious – We the taxpayers are paying for Cheney’s heart transplant. Chaney has got a blank check from taxpayers for all his expenses, period.

    Get over it.

  77. wishing ill on the former vice president is like making up stories about a dead kid.

    tasteless.

  78. “What a tasteless, butt-hole-ish bunch of comments.”

    And this comment is a prime example.

  79. I hope you paid for Goldberg! Poetic justice!

  80. If Cheney has a few more major organ transplants he will really earn the nickname “Darth Cheney”.

  81. GrannyTenderstone says:

    Vox: quoting you:

    “Gee, Rylla, don’t remember your letter asking the same question of millionaire x40, Bill Clinton when he had either of his by-pass surgeries.

    Who knows, maybe Warren Buffet paid for it… more likely his secretary.

    Read more here: http://blog.thenewstribune.com/letters/2012/03/27/healthcare-for-dick-cheney/#comments-respond#storylink=cpy

    now, the point you miss is this: BILL CLINTON SUPPORTS UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE, CHENEY DOES NOT. that’s the difference. ANYBODY who doesn’t support it BUT HAS INSURANCE WE PAID FOR is a hypocrite. He’s benefiting from “socialism” but doesn’t want anybody else to, that’s how the greedy are. They forget ALL WEALTH COMES FROM THE BOTTOM UP, it doesn’t trickle down.

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