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So is this a conspiracy to kill off granny? No. Will seniors be forced to make decisions they don’t want to make? No. But will “practitioners” be encouraged to have end-of-life discussions that include when it might be best for patients to allow their life to end earlier than it has to? Of course. And seniors have a right to be satisfied that there is not, at the heart of this process, undo consideration given to cost-cutting.

In the end, it depends on how comfortable one is with having the government in the middle of this process. That is what this discussion is really all about.

Fred D. Thompson, a former Tennessee Republican senator, hosts a nationally syndicated radio show (www.fredthompsonshow.com).