Obamacare: The Greatest Show On Earth

remaincalm
Artist’s rendering of Wednesday’s meeting

Roll Call posted a fascinating article on Wednesday detailing the growing sense of concern (or perhaps it would be more accurate to call it PANIC!) that many Congressional Democrats—especially those in marginally safe to contested seats—are experiencing over the rolling catastrophe of Obamacare’s implementation. For those who opposed the passage of the law in the first place, it’s a somewhat satisfying scene, which Jonah Goldberg is correct to refer to as a sort of “Schadenfreudarama.” Now, granted: it’s not a completely satisfying sort of schadenfreude; it would be much more satisfying if the consequences of the massive failure only affected those who insisted on pushing the thing through in the first place, and didn’t involve millions of people losing health insurance plans that they liked, with millions more likely on the way—along with the hardships that fact will entail for so many people. But in these days of chaos and confusion, I suppose I’ll take comfort in what little scraps of enjoyment come from watching those who supported this massive act of legislative malpractice scramble to save themselves from the consequences of their actions (which, of course, they had repeatedly been warned about).

But back to that article, which provides details on a meeting that occurred Wednesday between House Democrats and White House officials in which members of Congress basically demanded that the Obama Administration FIX THIS MESS. Some of the quotes in the article seem to me quite revealing of the mentality that prevails on the left side of the aisle in Congress*. For instance:

“Why can’t we call people who know how to do these things, who do it for corporate America, and say, ‘We have a website, fix it?’” asked Rep. José E. Serrano, D-N.Y. “Maybe I’m being simplistic, but can’t we call Bill Gates up and say, ‘Take care of this?’ Or go to a college dorm and say, ‘You guys, you invented Yahoo, can you take care of this?’”

Continue reading “Obamacare: The Greatest Show On Earth”

Pelosi: Happy New Year, Peasants! Oh, and feel free to die in a fire.

Allahpundit is right:  this is the perfect way for Nancy Pelosi to end her tenure as Speaker of the House.  Paternalistic?  Check.  Arrogant?  Check.  Detached from reality?  Checky-check-check-check.

And so our shameless, reckless, intrusive, imperious, and borderline-tyrannical 111th Congress slimes its way across the finish line without a hint of regret or introspection.  Here’s hoping that there’s enough time to undo the damage they did before the country collapses under the weight of all the debt.

The Socialist

Wow, this is stupid.

Here’s Democrat Dick Blumenthal talking about how jobs are created:

Here’s the difference between Blumenthal’s response and McMahon’s:  Blumenthal is all about desperately clutching to jobs that already exist but are under pressure to leave because they can be done more efficiently elsewhere.  He’s completely focused on using the power of government either to bribe or force businesses to stay in Connecticut, and don’t miss the fact that just below the surface is the unstated assumption that businessmen must be treated warily because they’re out to harm you.

McMahon, on the other hand, is forward looking: she focuses on the important role played by the entrepreneur in the job creation process, and doesn’t mention the government at all in her answer.  The only change I would have made to what she said would be to note that the government tends to be a negative force in the job creation process, and that elected officials have the responsibility to ensure that the government intervenes as little as possible in the private economy in order to ensure that entrepreneurs are as free as possible to do their work without encumbrance.

An aside: how is it possible that the Democrats have picked a candidate who looks and sounds terrible next to the former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment?

It Was All Lies.

Quote of the year, Health Care category:

It’s a bit late in the day to ask whether President Obama made a single truthful argument in favor of Obamacare. Yet he and his congressional allies probably didn’t expect the exposure of their lies to begin quite this soon after their nationalization of health care.

Throw the damn liars out.  Every last filthy one of them.

Health Care and Hobbyhorses

Jonah Goldberg reprints an e-mail from a commenter whose political hobbyhorse has been observing the left and it’s political hobbyhorse:

Dig deeper and you find the liberal narrative in full. The long winter out of power for the left, as the theory goes, starts with the Clintons failure to get healthcare. The first mistake was trying to ram it through Congress. The second mistake was not accepting a smaller version. The third mistake was failing to recognize the political damage. That lead to the ’94 election and their hero, Bill Clinton, throwing them over the rail in favor of Dick Morris. In an Oliver Stone way, all of this gave us Bush, Iraq, the WoT and whatever bogeymen they want to load on the cart.

So, Obama handed healthcare off to Pelosi and Reid. They accepted less than the originally wanted and made whatever deals necessary to get it done. They were even ready with a highly choreographed ceremony to bask in the warm glow of public approval.

Ooops.

To say healthcare is a political problem now, means the liberal historiography of the last 16 years is wrong. That’s so embedded in the catechism of the left, there’s no way they can do it. Instead I would expect the moonbats to start saying the problem with healthcare is it did not go far enough fast enough.

Jennifer Granholm’s Definition of “Success”

Her definition of success is apparently very similar to everyone else’s definition of failure.

“This is the laboratory of the states right here,” she told NBC’s David Gregory. “And I can tell you what has worked. What has worked is the government smartly intervening to save the auto industry; smartly, strategically, surgically intervening to invest with the private sector to create, for example, the electric batteries for the vehicles; smartly intervening with the private sector to be able to do the breakthrough technologies that the private sector doesn’t have the funds to be able to do. That’s what other countries are doing. And we’ve got to realize that these economic models that just say, ‘We’ve got to cut, cut, cut, cut, cut,’ you know, who’s applauding most is China.”

I’m not sure how Granholm can claim credit for a federal initiative to save GM and Chrysler, and the reality is that Ford is doing reasonably well these days without having been bailed out by the government.  And then there’s that battery plant in Holland to do the “breakthrough technologies that the private sector doesn’t have the funds to be able to do.”  First of all, the government has no funds outside of what it leeches off the private sector.  Secondly, if there was an actual demand for this “breakthrough technology,” you can bet that plenty of money will make its way to that product without the government’s help.

Granholm is as dumb as a stump, an empty skirt if there ever was one, and she’s lucky that she ran for governor in a state dominated by union politics against lackluster opposition, because that’s how she got elected.  The day she leaves office is the day that Michigan has a chance to grow again, barring the election of Virg Bernero as Governor, who seems to think that he can somehow by executive fiat recreate the good old days when Michigan was the only game in town for auto manufacturing and high school graduates could walk down to the employment office at GM and get a high-paying assembly line job with a big fat pension when they retire at age 55.  Ain’t gonna happen.

All that to say: what an idiot Granholm is.

Shirley Sharrod isn’t exactly clean and pure as the wind driven snow

Shirley Sherrod
Not exactly the hero she's being made out to be

I’ve been following the whole Andrew Breitbart vs. the NAACP/Obama Administration dustup involving the videotape of Shirley Sharrod of the USDA admitting to racial discrimination in carrying out her past duties before an audience at an NAACP event, and it’s just unpleasant.  Brietbart has a point, of course – Sharrod’s admissions of racism do garner murmurs of approval from the crowd, which is awful.  Critics of Brietbart have a point as well when they note that the statements made by Sharrod in the video clip released by Brietbart were tempered somewhat by her later comments in the address.  But Brietbart supporters also have a point when they respond by saying that the whole point of releasing the video clip in the first place was not to go after Sharrod, but to point out the approving reaction of the NAACP crowd to the awful things Sharrod was saying.  And almost everyone agrees that the White House acted too quickly in dismissing her from her job.

Opinion on Sharrod have whipsawed from her being a contemptible villain to her being a blameless victim over the course of just a few days.  With reflection, it seems that neither position is totally correct; she certainly has been victimized to some extent, but she’s certainly not the angel she’s being portrayed as at this moment.  I’m inclined to agree with Andy McCarthy at NRO, who comments on the contents of the full video of Sharrod’s speech, which still makes her look bad:

So, in Sherrod World, mean-spririted, racist Republicans do nasty things that “we” would never do because we have a president who, being black, is above that stuff. Still, we have-nots need to band together for “change” because a cabal of haves, desperate to keep their power, is still imposing their centuries old capitalist system of institutionalized racism — the same racism that courses through the Republican Party and surfaces on “us versus them” issues like healthcare.

Pardon me, but I think I’ll stay off the Canonize Shirley bandwagon. To me, it seems like she’s still got plenty of racial baggage. What we’re seeing is not transcendence but transference. That’s why the NAACP crowd reacted so enthusiastically throughout her speech.

With an ever-expanding federal bureaucracy assuming overlord status in what used to be private industry and private matters, are we supposed to feel better that this particular bureaucrat’s disdain, though once directed at all white people, is now channeled only toward successful white people … most of whom — like successful black people — worked very hard to become successful? Are we supposed to forget that when the Left says, “It’s always about the money,” you don’t have to have a whole lot of money to find yourself on the wrong side of their have/have-not equation? Are we supposed to take comfort in having our affairs managed by bureaucrats who see the country as a Manichean divide beset by institutionalized racism?

At the very least, Sharrod seems to have some toxic ideas about the American political and economic system guiding her actions.  Is it possible for people with toxic ideas to be treated badly?  Yes.  Does that mean that those people should be absolved of responsibility for or shielded from criticism of their ideas?  Absolutely not.