01 April 2010

Obama Sell-a-Thon

Nearly two weeks after the passage of the health care insurance reform bill and its severed conjoined reconciliation twin “fix” bill – which, incidentally, has its own split personality in the form of a federal takeover of student loans – President Obama is still attempting to “sell” the fix to Americans. This should tell us something about the contents of the bill, which Speaker Pelosi said would have to pass before we could all find out what was in it. Now that the bill is under even greater scrutiny, as it is law and not one of an array of squishy-fungible-voluminous proposals, the administration is convinced that the selling must continue.

Indeed, only today in Maine, Mr. Obama, according to the Associated Press, “urged Americans not to judge the nearly $1 trillion legislation he signed into law last week until the reforms take hold” – though perhaps not mentioning that such a wait would also push judgment past the midterm and next presidential elections. Very convenient for the perma-campaigner. It is a political case of having cake and eating it as well; health care insurance reform is a monumental achievement which the Democrats proudly claim as the president insists that it must not be judged until it is more fully implemented.

This administration is long on promises which differ greatly with what it delivers. The rhetoric does not match policy. Mr. Obama doesn’t want smaller government, he has claimed. However, the student loan takeover nationalized the student loan business. The health care insurance reform bill adds another sixteen thousand-ish IRS agents. One wonders just how many government minions will be employed by education “reform” – the reform of the NCLB reform, one might add – and senseless carbon taxing might be. Might the IRS need another ten thousand agents to “monitor” industry compliance with carbon emissions? Might a small army of new “experts” be hired to enforce curricula implementation?

Of course, we are at the moment a long way from those things. But if Mr. Obama manages to sell the current health care insurance reform bill without much complaint from the electorate, he will no doubt feel that he has a mandate to push through other “reforms.” Thus, his message – as false as it is – must be knocked down with hard facts as often as possible, and then some. When someone comes out and claims that the bill – excuse me, the law – will save somewhere around $100 billion, ask them to justify spending $1 trillion in order to save such a small sum. When someone claims that it is only humane to give health care to all, retort that the law itself is about insurance, not health care itself (though it will without doubt impact health care delivery, and very negatively). When someone claims that health care is a right, pull out a pocket copy of the Constitution and ask him to point to the exact location within the document which guarantees health care insurance for every citizen. Ask folks who tout this law just how much they value individual liberty. Ask them who has responsibility over the individual in our free country. Ask them, to paraphrase Dennis Prager, at what point the size and power of the government reduces the citizen to a mere subject.

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