Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Obama Ship of Fools

No matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health-care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health-care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.

--Barack Obama (6.15.09)  

Justice Department guidelines, set forth in the U.S. Attorneys Manual, recommend prosecution for fraud in situations involving “any scheme which in its nature is directed to defrauding a class of persons, or the general public, with a substantial pattern of conduct.” So, for example, if a schemer were intentionally to deceive all Americans, or a class of Americans (e.g., people who had health insurance purchased on the individual market), by repeating numerous times — over the airwaves, in mailings, and in electronic announcements — an assertion the schemer knew to be false and misleading, that would constitute an actionable fraud.

--Andrew McCarthy, National Review  

They were running the biggest start-up in the world, and they didn’t have anyone who had run a start-up, or even run a business,” said David Cutler, a Harvard professor and health adviser to Obama’s 2008 campaign, who was not the individual who provided the memo to The Washington Post but confirmed he was the author. “It’s very hard to think of a situation where the people best at getting legislation passed are best at implementing it. They are a different set of skills.”

--Amy Goldstein and Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post  

It is so bureaucratic and so cumbersome that a whole bunch of it doesn't work or it ends up being way over cost.

--Barack Obama (11.7.13)  

how someone wired the way Obama is got so far in politics remains a puzzlement. His aloneness is generally regarded as springing from a surfeit of self-confidence, a certitude that he really does know best. But at least one former senior administration adviser has argued that the trait springs from the opposite source: a basic insecurity on the president’s part, one that keeps him from surrounding himself with strong intellectual rivals in either the White House or the Cabinet. Competent they may be, but with Hillary Clinton gone there is no figure of unquestioned stature. He has quietly purged from his inner circle those most likely to stand up to him, and barely suffered the manful efforts of his latest chief of staff, McDonough, to encourage him to reach out to the remaining slivers of the Republican sanity caucus in Congress.

--Todd Purdhum, Vanity Fair

Purdum’s article is a signal the Washington D.C. elite, of which Purdum is a part (he’s married to Bill Clinton’s former press secretary Dee Dee Myers), has given up on Obama and is turning to Hillary.  

The real problem is a president and a Washington culture which both believe it is okay to lie to get a bill passed. There is no connection between such behavior and the values of most Americans beyond Washington, for whom getting what you want usually results from hard work, honest bargaining and a little compromise. 

--Salena Zito, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

I personally believe that Americans do long for a nation where “getting what you want” does result from “hard work, honest bargaining and a little compromise.”  Government, not the American people, are our “Ship of Fools.”

Here’s a longer, extended comment from conservative Robert Tracinski, writing in “RealClearMarkets”:
The lie about being able to keep our health insurance, and the left's defense of that lie, lays bare the arrogant paternalism of big government.
[The current] line of defense on the cancellation of existing health insurance policies is that "everyone knew" this was going to happen. It's just that nobody bothered to tell the public. It's an example of the old Clinton Rules for how to dispose of a scandal: "it's not true, it's not true, it's not true, it's old news."
This illuminates the extent to which the mainstream media, rather than being a check on the political system, is a part of it. When reporters come from the same cultural and ideological perspective as the politicians--and the Obama White House has been notorious for its revolving door between the administration and the press--then the watchdogs become lapdogs. That's why the fact-checkers couldn't be bothered to fact-check such an important and obviously false claim back when it would have mattered. They couldn't fact-check it precisely because it would have mattered.
"everyone knew" that President Obama's promise wasn't true, but none of them raised the alarm: they thought it was a good thing that people would be pushed off of their health insurance and onto the exchanges. They intended this consequence to happen. The only thing they didn't intend was for the public to figure it out. . . they intended to "help" us, without bothering to get our input or permission.
Ayn Rand. . . once described the architects of the welfare state as "monument builders." Like the kings and dictators who preceded them, who laid waste to whole continents so they could build heroic monuments to their own vanity, modern politicians and bureaucrats use the welfare state as a costly monument to the moral vanity of their own self-proclaimed compassion. ObamaCare is building another such monument.

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