I am, of course, happy that the Democrats' plans for our health care system are not doing well at the polls.  But my happiness is tempered, perhaps even erased, by the fact that many of the people opposing it are grievously misinformed.  Good policy shouldn't need to be sold by wacked-out lies.  (I'm looking at you, too, Democrats--who was it who told granny she was going to lose her social security during the last big Republican reform effort?)

As I've said, I think the underlying worry is valid.  It's odd to me that people settled on an obscure provision about end-of-life counseling to call "death panels", when of course, the actual proposal you have to fear will cut off your too-expensive care is IMAC.  Old people know they have it very, very good in this country, and they are reasonably afraid that a system which attempts to get costs under control--and yes, Obama did say he was going to finance this by cost-saving in Medicare!--will tell them to, well, take a painkiller instead of getting a pacemaker at age 99.

But you can say that you're worried about where this is all going without claiming that the healthcare reforms are going to send death squads out to round up Trig Palin.  There are enough actual problems with the bills on the table.  You shouldn't need to go making them up.  And if you do have to . . . well, in a democracy, you kind of deserve to lose.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.