Increasing Access and Affordability with Medical Freedom Zones

Benjamin Barr, Counsel at the Wyoming Liberty Group, first spoke with Michael about the concept of Medical Freedom Zones back in 2010.  He returns to dig deeper into this proposed mechanism that would Americans to bypass the burdensome bureaucratic barriers blocking their access to affordable and/or innovative medical treatments.  This government over-regulation is creating a growing demand for medical tourism; 500,000  patients sought care outside of the U.S. in 2008. Mr. Barr recently coauthored a 68-page report outlining his proposal to help these patients find the care they need in the United States rather than abroad:

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Practice Guidelines: sound science or marketing hype?

Physicians were once trained and encouraged to use critical thinking skills coupled with scientific knowledge to make diagnoses for their patients. Increasingly however, doctors are pressured by the government and insurance company bureaucrats writing their checks into substituting rigid practice guidelines for the physician’s own judgement.

In this podcast interview with Michael Ostrolenk, Richard Amerling, MD summarizes how these top-down, one-size-fits-all, “cookbook” protocols hurt patients. Dr. Amerling is  Associate Professor of clinical medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, and the Director of Outpatient Dialysis at the Beth Israel Medical Center.

Practice guidelines are too often both financed and written by the pharmaceutical industry and thus become biased towards favoring treatments benefitting these companies. In addition to discussing the scientific flaws in such guidelines, Dr. Amerling also explains why Obamacare will further entrench them and punish doctors who treat patients on an individualized basis.

Read Dr. Amerling‘s latest article “Practice Guidelines – Fail Again,” and watch a presentation by him from the 2011 AAPS meeting, below.

Elena Kagan: The Justice Who Knew Too Much

In this interview, Michael Ostrolenk speaks with Carrie Severino, Policy Director of the Judicial Crisis Network, about their new report: “Elena Kagan: The Justice Who Knew Too Much.

Ms. Severino was previously a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and to Judge David B. Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. She is a graduate of Harvard Law School, cum laude, of Duke University, and holds a Master’s degree in Linguistics from Michigan State University.

The report begins:

“At least eight of the Supreme Court’s nine members will soon decide whether to review the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”). The only question is whether Elena Kagan, the Court’s most junior Justice, will also pass judgment on President Obama’s signature law or recuse herself because of her role in defending PPACA’s constitutionality as President Obama’s Solicitor General.

As President Obama’s top advocate, Kagan headed the office responsible for formulating the Administration’s defense of PPACA—and oversaw the arguments both on appeal and in the lower courts because of PPACA’s national importance. The President is now asking her to adopt the very same positions her office helped craft for him on this matter, but this time, as a Supreme Court Justice. Her jump from advocate to judge on the same issue raises profound questions about the propriety of her continued participation in the case. Moreover, the legitimacy of any decision where she is in the majority or plurality would be instantly suspect if she chooses not to recuse herself.”

CLICK Here to read the entire report. Ms. Severino also frequently contributes on legal matters at National Review Online.

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A Health Savings Account (HSA) Primer

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) are an important tool to help patients regain control over their medical spending by letting them keep some of the money they would otherwise send directly to the government or insurance company. In this podcast with Michael Ostrolenk, Ryan Ellis of Americans for Tax Reform gives an overview of how HSAs work to benefit taxpayers. He also explains some of the recent negative changes made to HSAs by ObamaCare and what is being done to strengthen them, including Senator Orrin Hatch’s proposed Family and Retirement Health Investment Act of 2011 – S 1098.

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ObamaCare, Corporate Welfare, & Revolving Door Lobbying

President Obama fashions himself a scourge on special interests, yet the corporate and union lobby influence is ubiquitous in his “hallmark” legislation, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.  In this podcast with Michael Ostrolenk, Timothy P. Carney, formerly of Human Events [amazon-product align=”right” small=”1″]0471789070[/amazon-product] [amazon-product align=”right” small=”1″]1596986123[/amazon-product] and protege to the legendary journalist Bob Novak, and now Senior Political Columnist for the Washington Examiner, exposes the features written into ObamaCare to benefit the well-connected special interests at the expense of American citizens as a whole. Drug company and big insurance lobbyists “at the table” extracted corporate welfare trophies like limits on HSA drug purchases to prescription, rather than over-the-counter, drugs, expanded Medicare prescription drug subsidies, and not to mention the individual mandate to buy health insurance.   And now that the bill has become law, the Congressional staffers that wrote the bill have fled their government jobs for the  “Great Health Care Cash-out”  to lobby for corporate-friendly implementation regulations of the provisions of the PPACA.  Listen to learn more about the shocking truths about how big government and special interests are colluding to control the agenda in DC for the benefit of both parties and the detriment of our liberties.

End the Mandate: legislative efforts to end ObamaCare

Forcing every American to obtain a congressionally-approved health insurance plan is not just unconstitutional; it is a violation of the basic freedom to make our own decisions regarding how best to meet the health care need of ourselves and our families.   At both the state and federal levels, energetic citizens are working on innovative legislative solutions to repeal and invalidate the PPACA and restore our individual liberty.  In this podcast, Matt Hawes, VP of Programs at the Campaign for Liberty, updates Michael Ostrolenk about on going efforts including the End the Mandate Act, state nullification, and push back against the patient privacy intrusions. Listen to learn about what’s happening and how you can help.  In addition, click here to read the 2-sentence End the Mandate Act  and ask your Congressman to support it.  The bill, introduced as H.R. 4995 last year, will be reintroduced this year.

Update on Constitutional challenges to the ObamaCare individual mandate

There are over 20 active lawsuits, including one filed by AAPS, challenging the PPACA. In this podcast, Michael Ostrolenk speaks with Constitutional scholar and best selling author Ken Klukowski about what’s next in the Florida and Virginia Constitutional challenges against the individual mandate to purchase government approved health insurance.  They also discuss the inevitable U.S. Supreme Court review of ObamaCare and implications of the acts lack of a severability clause. In addition to authoring an amicus brief quoted in the Florida decision of Judge Roger Vinson, Mr. Klukowski wrote briefs submitted to the U.S. Supreme court in two recent 2nd Amendment cases, D.C. vs. Heller and McDonald v. Chicago.  Michael and Mr. Klukowski touch briefly on future court action to further strengthen individuals’ rights to keep and bear arms. See more of Mr. Klukowski’s writings at

What will ObamaCare and other exorbitant government spending do to our dollar?

With the growing list of bailouts and stimulus packages (not to mention Obamacare, and U.S. troop presence in over 200 countries), multi-billion and even trillion dollar expenditures by our Federal Government have become a common occurrence. Where is the money coming from?  A major source is the seemingly never-ending supply of dollars from the Federal Reserve and many predict that this setting up an untenable future for the value of the dollar.  In this podcast, James Wilson of Downsize DC speaks with Michael Ostrolenk about what value-backed competing currencies might emerge in the event the public loses faith in fiat money.

Health Care Freedom Zones

The personal medical freedoms of Americans have been in many ways on the decline well before the signing of the PPACA last March and the result is often, tragically, lost lives.  Patients looking to innovative, possibly life-saving medical treatments are met by bureaucratic red tape created by government agencies like the FDA and state medical boards.  In this podcast, Benjamin Barr, J.D. of the Wyoming Liberty Group discusses with Michael Ostrolenk an innovative solution to resecure our lost rights – Health Care Freedom Zones.

Transpartisan Opposition to ObamaCare

Michael Ostrolenk speaks with progressive blogger Jane Hamsher of about the opposition from across the political spectrum to the so called Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. One of the main components of PPACA these groups object to is the mandate forcing individuals to buy health insurance from private coroporations – health insurance that they may not want and may not cover care they will need. In this short conversation Michael and Ms. Hamsher look at the resasons, some similar some not, folks from all political points of view dislike this provision.  They also discuss the implications that the unpopular new health care law has for the upcoming elections.