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.

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.

Paul Ryan (R-Awesometown) Attempts Adult Conversation With Democrat

Naturally, the effort failed, as Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is not an adult, but rather a political point-scoring machine.  Granted, a badly programmed and defective machine, but a machine nonetheless:

What we learn from this, once again, is that a) Democrats have no ability to look beyond the next election, and b) Paul Ryan is still Superman.

Honest Democrats are Rare and Precious

…and should be kept away from Congress like the rest of them all the same.  Virginia Congressman Tom Perriello had this to say back in March:

“If there’s one thing I’ve learned up here (in Washington) and I didn’t really need to come up here to learn it, is the only way to get Congress to balance the budget is to give them no choice, and the only way to keep them out of the cookie jar is to give them no choice, which is why – whether it’s balanced budget acts or pay as you go legislation or any of that – is the only thing. If you don’t tie our hands, we will keep stealing”

Here’s the video:

For once, I believe we have a case of a Congressman telling us the truth.  I look forward to seeing this chump’s hand’s tied in November.  Hopefully he’ll  be sent safely away from the Capitol where he can’t do any more legislative damage.

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.

It’s Simple: Obama and His Allies are Filthy Liars

This was obvious to many during the 2008 campaign, but unfortunately not the majority.  And now we have a massive health-care “reform” disaster, all based on misinformation, obfuscation, and (mostly) outright, bald-faced lying.  For instance, all throughout the process of shoving Obamacare through Congress, Obama and his cronies insisted repeatedly that the individual mandate did not represent a tax increase.  Obama repeatedly and emphatically stated as much when he was confronted by George Stephanopoulos in an interview on ABC last year.  But, as everyone now seems to be realizing, Obama is a filthy liar.  This is evidenced by the fact that

…under the legislation signed by President Obama in March, most Americans will have to maintain “minimum essential coverage” starting in 2014. In a brief defending the law, the Justice Department says the requirement for people to carry insurance or pay the penalty is “a valid exercise” of Congress’s power to impose taxes.

DOJ argues that the penalty is a tax because it will raise substantial revenue: $4 billion a year by 2017, according to the Congressional Budget Office. And according to the Times, the penalty is imposed and collected under the Internal Revenue Code, and people must report it on their tax returns “as an addition to income tax liability.” Because the penalty is a tax, the department says, no one can challenge it in court before paying it and seeking a refund.

That’s from Peter Wehner, who goes on to note the following:

This is just one example of a systematic pattern of misinformation and disinformation related to the health-care campaign. We have seen similarly dishonest claims related to funding abortion (ObamaCare is doing exactly that), bending the cost curve down (it will bend it up), lowering premiums (they will rise), and to allowing Americans to keep the coverage they currently have (many won’t).

In many respects, the Obama administration has shown itself to be thoroughly postmodern; words have no objective meaning. Reality can be molded to the whims of the most powerful. We can each construct our own narrative.

In the case of the president, the narrative is fairly simply: whatever advances his own aims and objectives is defensible. The ends justify the means. If false claims have to be used to advance a larger truth, so be it.

The scum in Congress that passed this travesty should be thrown out of office.  And we can only hope the the leader of this contingent of lying filth – Obama himself – will pay dearly for all of his “accomplishments” at the polls in 2012.