They were playing this one up heavy on NPR yesterday, and you’ll be hearing it endlessly repeated by the Left from here on out, until it becomes just another one of those “facts” that are indisputable, despite being made up from whole cloth to promote a barely-hidden agenda:
Elizabeth Warren has another study out showing that medical expenses contribute to more than half of all bankruptcies–indeed, this time, it’s 70%, up from the 50% she found in 2001.
Now, it is possible that this is true. The fact that it seems to disagree with every other study I’ve ever read that is not authored by Elizabeth Warren, and also, the self-reports of the people in her study (only about a third of whom attribute their bankruptcy to a health problem) could just be a fluke. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s wrong.
Yet upon closer examination, it turns out that it is not just wrong, but actively, aggressively wrong. Warren and her co-authors have obscured important and obvious facts that call the integrity of the work into serious question.
Gee, liberals promoting government health care are dishonest? Why, I can scarcely believe it. Heck, we’ve only had about a thousand examples of the same tactic being used over the previous three or four decades, with dismaying success.
Somewhere, Goebbels and Stalin are enjoying a quiet laugh at liberty’s expense.
Yet even so, their own work shows medical bankruptcies falling in the years between 2001 and 2007, which would seem to invalidate, not support, the claim that half of all bankruptcies in 2001 were driven by medical events beyond the household’s control.
Elementary googling reveals that the two doctors who co-authored this study are prominent spokespeople for Physicians for a National Health Program, and thus have an obvious agenda, one that Elizabeth Warren has not been shy about sharing. The American Journal of Medicine, which published this study, seems to have flunked Peer Review 101–I sure hope they’re more careful about controlling for background conditions when they’re talking about cures for cancer. Also wearing duncecaps are the journalists who are already uncritically parroting it.
They flunked Peer Review 101 all right — but aced Advanced Propaganda.
There is, of course, a large amount of terrible advocacy masquerading of social science out there, and too many journals and journalists abet it. But this is particularly troubling because Elizabeth Warren is now in charge of overseeing the TARP program for Congress. What other inconvenient facts is she shielding us from?
That one’s easy: any and all that might get in the way of The Project.