The deep political theorist and former candidate for Vice President Sarah Palin complained, a couple of years back, about "death panels" in President Obama's health care reform package.
First, I want to say I think the package was weak. We need national health care, not this weird hybrid first proposed by the Republicans in 1994, one in which private insurance companies play a big role. Second, the plan created no "death panels." In fact, for years private insurance companies have called the shots on whether certain procedures or treatments should be covered, read that allowed, under a person's plan. They have regularly nixed procedures as exerimental or outside of treatment plans. The insurance companies make money by raking in premiums and not having to pay out for services.
But, third, if the sentiment was based on moral outrage over inflicting death, I think the recent Republican "debate" in Tampa dispelled any doubt about the morality of the people who prefer to call themselves tea partiers or whatever. The crowd was vocal in its support of letting a hypothetical uninsured man in a coma die. They cheered last week for Governor Perry's stats as the number one governor/executioner in modern history.
The death panel, that night, was the crowd. One commentator noted the crowd resembling what crowds at the Roman Colisseum probably were like.