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December 5, 2001

Politics and Medicare

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorJody W.ZylkeMD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2001;286(21):2670-2671. doi:10.1001/jama.286.21.2665

To the Editor: In his review of the second edition of Theodore Marmor's classic book The Politics of Medicare, Dr Kane1 allows that "[t]his book provides just what its title promises." Who could object? Surprisingly, Kane does, arguing that "for most readers the politics is less interesting than the substance." Serious books, especially influential texts, should be subject to rigorous critical review. But Kane's assertions about Medicare's politics and history, and about the politics of health policy more generally, are doubly misplaced. Besides being only vaguely related to Marmor's book, they are thoroughly contradicted by the growing body of work in the field of health policy and politics.

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