Obamacare

Watch Obamacare Architect Jonathan Gruber Explain Why "Lack of Transparency" Was Key to Passing the Health Care Law

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Jonathan Gruber was, by most accounts, one of the key figures in constructing the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare. He helped designed the Massachusetts health care law on which it was modeled, assisted the White House in laying out the foundation of the law, and, according to The New York Times, was eventually sent to Capitol Hill "to help Congressional staff members draft the specifics of the legislation." He provided the media with a stream of supportive quotes, and was paid almost $400,000 for his consulting work. 

Jonathan Gruber, in other words, knows exactly what it took to get the health care law passed.

And that's why you should take him seriously when he says, in the following video, that it was critical to not be transparent about the law's costs and true effects, and to take advantage of the "stupidity of the American voter" in order to get it passed:  

(Via the Daily Signal.)

Here's the full quote: 

"This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO [Congressional Budget Office] scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. Okay, so it's written to do that.  In terms of risk rated subsidies, if you had a law which said that healthy people are going to pay in – you made explicit healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it would not have passed… Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really really critical for the thing to pass….Look, I wish Mark was right that we could make it all transparent, but I'd rather have this law than not."

This validates much of what critics have said about the health care law, and the tactics used to pass it, for years.

For one thing, it is an explicit admission that the law was designed in such a way to avoid a CBO score that would have tanked the bill. Basically, the Democrats who wrote the bill knowingly gamed the CBO process. 

It's also an admission that the law's authors understood that one of the effects of the bill would be to make healthy people pay for the sick, but declined to say this for fear that it would kill the bill's chances. In other words, the law's supporters believed the public would not like some of the bill's consequences, and knowingly attempted to hide those consequences from the public. 

Most importantly, however, it is an admission that Gruber thinks it's acceptable to deceive people if he believes that's the only way to achieve his policy preference. That's not exactly surprising, given that he failed to disclose payments from the administration to consult on Obamacare even while providing the media with supposedly independent assessments of the law.

But it's particularly revealing in light of Gruber's recently discovered comments regarding the way the law's subsidies for health insurance are supposed to work. In a 2012 video unearthed this summer, Gruber said explicitly that the tax credits to offset coverage costs were conditioned on state participation in the law's exchanges—a contention that the administration denies, and is at the heart of a legal challenge on its way to the Supreme Court. 

Gruber, who by 2014 was making vehement arguments in support of the administration's position, said that in the video he misspoke. That excuse was hard to believe. For one thing, he elaborated on the argument at length, and for another, a second recording surfaced soon after in which he said almost the exact same thing. 

It's even harder to believe now that he has admitted that he thinks it's fine to mislead people if doing so bolsters the policy goals he favors. It's really quite telling, about the law and also about Gruber. Gruber may believe that American voters are stupid, but he was the one who was dumb enough to say all this on camera. 

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  1. Most transparent administration in history.

    1. It’s a very short definition of history.

      1. Middle income people are getting killed by ObamaCare. If you earn over the guidelines for the subsidy you will find yourself paying outrageous premiums. I purchase my insurance on the individual market…have for years. After ACA, my plan was cancelled and had to be replaced by an ACA compliant plan chock full of things I don’t need like pediatric dental care, maternity care, etc.

        A single person earning over $46k does not qualify for a subsidy. Since when did $46K become “wealthy”? Without the subsidy my premium for a crappy silver plan more than doubled and my deductible went from $1500 to $6500. To get a lower deductible gold level plan my premium would triple. My car insurance ($25/month from Insurance Panda), renters insurance ($10/month from Eagle), even iPhone insurance premiums rarely increase and are still cheap. How come after the ACA, my health premiums have nearly tripled?!

        When I complained to my Democrat congressman he said well the ACA helps a lot of low income people. So I guess it’s OK then to hurt middle income people, Vote all Democrats who inflicted this on us, out!

        1. Someone has to pay for people who aren’t paying. And for the new bureaucracy. That’s you. Does the mule ask why it’s pulling a load?

    2. I think that was a “speak-o“. Obama meant to say that his would be the most opaque Administration in history.

      1. It was what Krugman calls an “intentional typo”

        1. It doesn’t matter, because that’s how all the progtard slavers think, cause they know what’s best for us serfs.

          1. As much outrage as this video elicits, isn’t it refreshing to hear one of them say out loud the thing we all already knew anyway?

  2. We made it so that we had to pass the law to see what was in it.

  3. Scumbag proggies use deceit to sell their policies. Shocking.

    1. The only thing I hate more than scumbag proggies are their fake libertarian apologists. I won’t mention any names or anything.

      1. No no. Please do. If you are going to start calling names, please do so like a human being and step up to the plate.

        Really. We are all interested to hear your judgements.

        1. Barkavious Mingo, that is a name.

      2. In your silly attempt to be clever you have proven to be as opaque as most progressives.

    2. These are the same people who hold up democracy as the virtue of virtues.

      Apparently, not.

      1. They don’t understand the concept of real representative government.

    3. I would have gone with

      Lying sack of crap with long history of lying admits to being a lying sack of crap.

  4. Ow, my nuts.

    1. I thought the show as called “Ouch, my balls!”. And was it on the Batin’ channel?

  5. Was I the only one who watched this smug prick palm his dishonesty off as cleverness and felt a near-overwhelming desire to put a ballbat to his face?

    1. No, you weren’t.

    2. He reminds me vaguely of Mr. Collins in Pride and Prejudice. Complimenting the hostess, and then smugly disclosing how his compliments are deliberately calculated at the dinner table.

  6. What’s it like to have these sociopaths leading your side? What does it do to you to follow these kinds of people?

    Tony, Buttplug, you guys proud?

    1. Only results matter to progs, by whatever means.

      1. YUP. FYTW.

      2. Yep, if you got to lie because the American voters are too stupid, then so be it. /gruber

        1. Apparently they have to lie because American voters are too smart.

          1. That is exactly correct. As Ayn Rand wrote many times and in many contexts, it is your rationality, your perceptiveness, your intelligence that the left has to evade.

      3. That seems off. Intentions maybe, results not so much.

        1. Correct, RickC. Libs have no results to stand on.

          Unless blaming Republicans for their policy failures counts.

      4. But not real results. Just that something passed that SOUNDS like it might have good results. They never check to see if anything works or worry that the poor are being cheated if 2/3 of the money is wasted or goes to middle-men and political cronies.

        Good intentions are all that matters. But now we see that the good intentions are only on what they hope will happen if it passes but they don’t have good intentions while trying to get it passed. It’s ok to lie and cheat.

    2. Of course they are. Why wouldn’t they be? It’s all for our own good because we are too stupid to take care of ourselves. That justifies all the lies, deception, and obfuscation.

    3. Tony probably got super hard watching that video.

      Shriek is a barely functioning retard so he’s probably walking around saying “Pachooie Chum. Pachooie chooie chum.”

      1. Naw. When Shreek is wandering the streets, anyone who can penetrate the truly impressive pong he exudes will overhear “Millenium hand and shrimp.”

    4. Two prominent members of Ezra Klein’s “JournoList”?

      Yeah, they’re pretty proud for sure. You’re talking about two guys who lie on here every single day as part of their job.

    5. If you really miss them, you can listen to their arguments here:

      Meet the Liberal Elite!

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZrqdZFFb5c

  7. I wonder if those two videos will be admissable when the Supremes look at the subsidies ?

    1. It probably wouldn’t matter in the court. What I hope is that the justices have privately watched this video and make their mind up on it.

      1. “Judicial deference. Penaltax.”

      2. What I hope is that the justices have privately watched this video and make their mind up on it.

        Nope, won’t make a damn bit of difference in private either. The ones who hate Ocare will still hate it. The ones who agree with it will ignore this video, rationalize it, etc, and continue supporting their commie messiah.

    2. Appellate hearings are not fact-finding hearings, so admissibility isn’t an issue.

      Nothing will prevent opponents of the law from quoting these videos at length in their briefs, though.

    3. I’m hoping that John Roberts comes out and says “The law clearly states that subsidies are only available through state run exchanges and it seems clear that it was intentionally written that way in order to push states into running their own exchanges. It is not our job to protect the politicians from the consequences of their political choices.”

      1. You should hope bigger. I’m hoping that Sonia Sotomayor comes out and says that.

        1. I am hoping pigs start flying and shitting twizzlers.

          Pretty sure my dream will come true first.

  8. What difference, at this point, does it make?

    I guess this is it.

  9. Does Gruber not know how recording devices work? Wow.

    1. He knows – he also knew that once it was passed that would be it. Wouldn’t be repealed – why else would he say something so moronic? Aside from the fact that he’s a moron, of course.

      1. You are right. Once its out of the barn, no reason for him to continue hiding the truth. Its almost gloating of him then, right? “Look how clever we were…”

      2. He puts the “conceit” in “fatal conceit.” It’s not enough for it to get passed. People must be aware of how “clever” he is so he can feel good about himself.

    2. Does Gruber not know how recording devices work? Wow.

      He thinks everyone else is stupid. You, me, everyone on this board, voters, the people that don’t vote, us yokels that don’t live in his neighborhood… everybody. He has no fear of his words coming back to haunt him because he has nothing but contempt for, well, everybody.

      1. And all the people he hangs out with think the same thing.

        People like that, they don’t say this shit unless they think everyone will admire them for it.
        Progs love to pat eachother on the back for how clever they are. Everything with them is a giant circle jerk of smug intellectual and moral superiority.

        1. Progs love to pat eachother on the back for how clever they are. Everything with them is a giant circle jerk of smug intellectual and moral superiority.

          True. But socons are holding a giant circle jerk of smug Christian and moral superiority, so we’re screwed either way.

          1. I would describe the SoCons more as a pity party than a circle jerk.

    3. Of course he does. And none of it matters to him.

    4. Does Gruber not know how recording devices work?

      He knows and doesn’t care – sociopaths that once might have taken care to fake it now find the bother unprofitable.

      Face it, friends – we’re watching the mainstreaming of sociopathy.

  10. Smarmy, smug, little twirp of a lying piece of shit prog.

    Ends justifies the means.

  11. Joseph Takagi: You want money? What kind of terrorists are you?

    Hans Gruber: Who said we were terrorists?

  12. I wish it was all
    transparent, but I’d rather
    have this law than not.

    But we have to pass
    the bill so that you can find
    out what is in it.

  13. It’s also an admission that the law’s authors understood that one of the effects of the bill would be to make healthy people pay for the sick, but declined to say this for fear that it would kill the bill’s chances. In other words, the law’s supporters believed the public would not like some of the bill’s consequences, and attempted to hide that from the public.

    So did the various idiots in Congress who voted for this and saw their political careers end as a result too stupid to see through the lie or thought the public would never notice their health insurance policies ending or becoming more expensive? Don’t tell me they voted for it as some kind of noble sacrifice for the cause. No way. No one who gets elected to Congress is ever going to volunteer to give up their office no matter how much the cause demands. So those dumb asses somehow convinced themselves that voting for this wasn’t going to end their careers.

    And this for no other reason makes a moral case for repealing this thing. Basically this smug little bastard is saying “sure we lied and it is going to be a disaster for most of the country, but fuck them what are they going to do about it”.

    1. No, they were likely thinking that the majority of the public would welcome spending more in an altruistic sense.

      1. Then they are dumber than even I think they are. The public loves spending other people’s money for good causes. They are not however very keen on spending their own. So no amount of “what about the sick” is going to save this bill or the morons who passed it. People care about the sick right up until doing something costs them money.

        1. ^^^THIS^^^

          Doubly so amongst the progies.

      2. I don’t think so. Just as people are all for fighting climate change until Congress shows them the new taxes that are required, people are all for helping people get more health care until it hits their insurance rates.

        1. My deductibles are going up again. Along with premiums. When the fuck is this going to stop?

          Repeal and incinerate.

          1. And my wife has to juggle two part-time jobs because she can no longer get enough hours at one job (they set a limit of 25 hours)…..but yeah, O-care hasn’t affected the labor market at all.

            1. Yes, that, too. My real point is that this law screws over the vast majority of people and needs to go, even if just on utilitarian grounds. Naturally, I think it should go and be replaced with something I call the free market.

              1. But free markets should be regulated. And it was the regulated free market that got us into this mess!

                1. Agreed that they should be regulated. I hereby nominate as Free Market Czar, Mr. Invisible Hand.

                  1. Agreed that they should be regulated. I hereby nominate as Free Market Czar, Mr. Invisible Hand.

                    Good, ’cause mine is busy right now.

          2. Premiums where I work are going up over 50% for the single non-tobacco user plan.

            1. Mine only went up a couple hundred bucks. My wife’s went from “company pays all” to “you now contribute 10% of your salary.” I Ant seem to equate either of those to saving $2500/yr.

    2. I honestly think they expected people to accept the negative affects of the law just like we do gas prices or higher taxes. Bitch and moan for a few months, the in the end accept the cost increases as something that can’t be changed, and just live with it. But this time the costs were too much at once, affected more people than they expected, and were compounded by some bad PR like the web site. No matter how much spin they couldn’t get over that.

      I guess you could say they just overreached.

      1. They convinced themselves it was like medicare or social security and people would grow to like it. The problem is that those laws, whatever their flaws, actually cut checks to millions of people. This law doesn’t do that. It seems to benefit very few people at the cost of screwing almost the entire working population. Its never going to be popular or anything but a political albatross for the Democrats.

      2. I guess you could say they just overreached.

        If Ocare is the law of the land in ten years, then they didn’t overreach.

        1. What good will it have done them? So what if it is the law of the land? The law is a disaster and is making the Democratic Party into a regional party composed of bitter old white people.

          Managing to keep the law in effect only makes an effective long game if the law being in effect does something good for the Democrats. If it just lingers for years as a reminder of how disastrous it was the last time the Democrats controlled all of Washington, then the people who passed it are even bigger losers than if it gets repealed.

          Indeed, in many cases the worst possible scenario might be the most likely. It may be that the Democrats are unable to admit they were wrong and repeal the law while the Republicans find the law so politically beneficial that they are happy to do nothing and continue to pound the Democrats with the law’s existence. Instead of getting repeal or the long dreamed of “single payer”. Obamacare very well could result in a long political hell for Democrats while the country staggers along under its effects.

          1. Obamacare very well could result in a long political hell for Democrats while the country staggers along under its effects.

            This is not the kind of future I want for my government children. My desire isn’t to watch Democrats lose while living under their disastrous policies.

            1. It is a shitty future. But it is also not one that the assholes who passed this envisioned. They passed this because they thought it would give them political power. It seems to have done unbelievable damage to both the Democratic Party and the leftist cause in general. So even if it ends badly for the country, it is I think unlikely to end well for the assholes who passed it either.

              1. I think unlikely to end well for the assholes who passed it either.

                Oh, my, yes. They’ll just have to take on a role as lobbyists and political fixers until the GOP screws up enough again to give them an opening. Whatever shall they do?

                Sorry, but I really have to disagree with you on this one. What negative consequence is the son of a bitch in this video going to experience because of his actions? Anything? Or is he going to be just the hit on campus and a regular speaker on the progressive circuit?

                1. Sorry but I just did feel the need to continue on. What would happen to a private business, say an investment bank, that announced that it had done to it’s public disclosures what Mr. Gruber announced in this matter? My guess is that their executive management team would be expecting a visit from Preet Bharara with this video as Exhibit A.

    3. We need one new law. Make fraud statutes apply to any politicians that claim their legislation does something that is the opposite of what it does. It is fraud and should be charged as such. There are real damages and real victims. There may never be another law passed, but that’s not the worst outcome we could have.

      1. John Dingell said often and loudly during 2009 that the ACA would immediately insure more than 95% of the country — upon passage. So throw that fucker in the hoosegow next to Gruber, and let’s lose the key.

  14. This clip sums up rather nicely the reality of who the left is: smug, dishonest and dismissive. You rubes, don’t you understand that they’re doing this for your own good?

    1. Everything is so brilliant and so right that lies, misinformation, and misdirection are necessary to selling the program?

      1. Necessary and thus completely justifiable. This Gruber fellow just missed the memo about not discussing it in public, in case we stupid lay voters get lucky and figure it out.

  15. http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..n-krugman/

    Volokh Conspiracy rips Krugabe.

    For an example of someone making arguments that are not nearly as strong as he thinks they are it would be hard to do better than Paul Krugman’s most recent column.

    1. According to Krugman, the claim in King is based upon an “obvious typo.” In other words, Krugman thinks this is a case of sloppy legislative drafting that should be corrected by the courts.

      Yep, there it is. Sure, the law SAYS that, but they really just meant “pass the salt”!

      1. And why even stop there? Why not “Well, the law says a lot of things but what they really meant was “universal healthcare”.

      2. this is a case of sloppy legislative drafting that should be corrected by the courts.

        Which the courts don’t have the authority to do. If they exceed their authority to redraft a law, that is textbook judicial activism.

    2. . If Krugman wants to actually advance his side’s argument (rather than just vent his spleen), he should really read the Ziff post above and take legal argument seriously. Alternatively, he could stick to subjects upon which he’s actually an expert.

      And which would those be?

      1. Derping!

    3. Wow. That is one mammoth spanking.

  16. The people who say “We can’t have transparency and get the laws we need” are five years away from saying “We can’t have democratic process and get the laws we need.”

    1. 5 years away? Have you not noticed the blizzard of executive orders from Mr. “I have a pen and a phone”?

      1. People have been saying that behind closed doors for as long as we’ve had democracy. When they start saying in in public and large numbers of people are willing to go along with it, the shit is about to hit the fan.

    2. Five years away? They have been saying that for years.

    3. “We can’t have democratic process and get the laws we need.”

      They’ve been saying that for years. There’s nothing new there.

    4. Very good insight.
      Really, what it betrays is a lack of respect for democracy; the feeling that they are fit to rule others – with or without their informed consent.

    5. The people who say “We can’t have transparency and get the laws we need” are five two years away from saying “We can’t have democratic process and get the laws elected officials we need.”

      FTFY

  17. Someone is aching to get “Vince Fostered.

    The worst part really is that he knows he can say these things and nothing will change.

    1. He may be a dishonest operative, but he is an honest academic.

  18. If only the Republicans didn’t make Obama compromise like this!

  19. Freaking morons, they know that if legislation can’t pass without trickery and deceit that it’s going to have a negative effect on most of us and they simply don’t care!?

  20. Scotusblog thinks it’ll be a slam dunk.

    http://www.scotusblog.com/2014…..mple-case/

    Because Section 36B is the section that governs when it comes to limits on these credits and subsidies, the question then, is what did Congress intend when it drafted Section 36B. The text provides the answer, and an unambiguous answer it is. The phrase “Exchange established by a state under Section 1311” ?leaves nothing to the IRS’s imagination?.?

    In the end, the Court won’t have to break any new interpretative ground in deciding King. When all the noise is stripped away, it’s a simple case. It really is.

    1. It is just that. The problem with the “its just a typo” theory is that the language makes sense. You strike things because they are typos because they don’t make any sense as written. This language makes perfect sense. It was obviously inserted to give the states the incentive to set up their own exchanges so the feds didn’t have to set them up. All that has happened is the states have called the feds’ bluff.

      The other thing that points to it being read that way is that the Supreme Court accepted CERT before the DC Circuit could hear the case enbanc. Harry Reid used the nuclear rule and stacked the DC Circuit with Dem hack judges specifically to overrule the first ruling and prevent a split in the circuits thus giving the Court a reason not to hear it. The fact that the SCOTUS granted cert before that could happen strongly indicates they intend to affirm the case. If they wanted to overturn it, they could have done nothing and let the hacks on the DC circuit overturn it and avoided getting involved at all.

      1. It takes 4 votes to grant cert, but 5 to reverse.

        1. Yes. But why would the conservative justices granted cert if they thought they were going to lose?

          1. It’s possible they thought that the stacking of the DC court would appear corrupt (which, of course, it IS), and took the case just to protect the reputation of the judicial branch. Given that reputation is the only power they really have.

            Also they might just have been pissed at the way the DC circuit court was being politically manipulated and thus felt that the administration should be deprived of getting any benefit from doing so.

    2. Scotusblog, meet Chief Justice John Roberts.

      1. No. You underestimate how craven Roberts is. Also, if the court wanted to let it stand, they could have done nothing.

        It only takes four to get cert. Maybe the conservative justices want to force the issue figuring they will lose. But I can’t see that. I don’t think the four conservative justices would have asked for cert unless they thought they were going to win.

        And all of them love to avoid deciding an issue where they can. And they had the perfect opportunity here and still took cert.

        1. But if they didn’t take it they would be allowing the case to be decided by a court that was flagrantly stacked by Obama, with Harry Reid using the nuclear option to change the filibuster options so as to force the nominations through.

          They might cert it just to avoid allowing that to take place.

          (The fact that the administration felt the need to stack the court to guarentee a favorable ruling
          is also telling.)

          1. “They might cert it just to avoid allowing that to take place.”

            Just reading tea leaves here too, but that suggests they might well can it.

            1. What do you mean “can it”?

      2. I’m with you. I don’t believe it for a second.

    3. The only problem is that the clear language of the statute runs smack into deference to the IRS in drafting its rules under the statute.

      The Court can easily rule in favor of the IRS here under administrative deference, by simply adopting the IRS’s handwaving about Congressional intent.

  21. So what happens after the tax subsidies to the Federal exchange are axed?

    1. wiki provides…

      If the regulation is overturned, residents in states that did not set up their own exchange would not receive subsidies. Low income individuals in those states could also become exempt from the individual mandate if the lack of subsidies increased the cost of the cheapest qualifying health insurance policy to more than 8% of their income. Alex Tolbert, the founder of Bernard Health, and Jonathan Adler say that, if the challengers succeed, the employer mandate would not be enforced in states that do not set up an exchange, since the employer mandate is linked to at least one employee at a company receiving a subsidy.

      Only 14 states have set up their own exchanges. If the mandates and subsidies are not in place in the other 36 states, many think that the economic foundation of the ACA may be undermined, putting the entirety of the legislation at risk.

      1. putting the entirety of the legislation at risk sooner than would have otherwise been the case.

      2. Its bigger even that the indidivual mandate being lifted for some people.

        At least one of the employer mandates is triggered by one of your employees getting the tax credit. If SCOTUS applies the law as written, it also undermines the employer mandate in those states.

    2. What happens is millions of the free shit brigade don’t get their free shit. This will force Obama and the Democrats to come to the table and ask the Republicans for a fix. The Republicans will then be free to demand a price for passing that fix. How high that price is will depend on just how badly the Democrats want the fix and how willing the Republicans are to be portrayed in the media as just big meanies who don’t want to give away free shit because they hate Obama.

      1. So, force the republicans to finally become complicit in this disaster.

        1. Maybe. That is the problem with passing any sort of “fix”; it makes the Republicans now responsible and the piece of shit law “bi partisan”. So any fix better be a good one.

          The problem is even if the Republican establishment wants to roll over, the Republican majority in the House is huge. There might not be enough Republican votes to pass anything other than outright repeal. If that happens, then the people in the fed exchange states don’t get their subsidies.

          I am not sure what the fallout of that would be. Sure, they free shit brigade would probably blame the Republicans. But that is hardly a majority, especially since those states are all very Republican. The majority of voters in those states hate Obama and the act are are likely to happily deny the free shit minority in order to stick it to Obama. If that happens, the Dems are stuck and unable to help their own constituency.

        2. The Repubs will have to get past the Chamber of Commerce to pass a fix.

          Because the fix will impose penalties on employers in states with federal exchanges.

          Good luck with that.

      2. this isn’t “Free Shit”, this is “Free Mandatory Shit”. It will revert to “Optional Shit at a cost”, which will be opted out of without incident.

        1. The subsidies are taken alone, free shit.

  22. “Could we,” I said, “somehow contrive one of those lies that come into being in case of need, of which we were just now speaking, some one noble lie to persuade, in the best case, even the rulers, but if not them, the rest of the city?”

  23. If only people could see the pattern…when progs say have a clever new idea to make everyone’s life better without unpleasant side effects, remind them that if it passes, a few years later they’ll be boasting on camera how they put one over on the rubes.

    “No, no, this time it’s different!” (Giggle)

    1. “When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
      They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
      But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
      And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: ‘Stick to the Devil you know.'”

      1. Reminds me of this .

        #annexed

  24. The State of Vermont hired Gruber for another $400K to consult on Vermont’s attempt to implement single-payer. My tax dollars at work:

    http://vtdigger.org/2014/07/23…..proposals/

    1. Heard your independent democratic senator on Democracy Now frothing over the prospect of VT single payer. We have a horrible independent senator here in Maine but nothing like that.

  25. Excellent article. Everything Gruber says should be roundly discredited.
    It’s rare that you can catch a Democratic Party hack openly acknowledging their bullshit in this way, and a great example of how they are much stupider than they think they are. Not only because they think this bullshit isn’t transparent, but because they are dumb enough to brag about it.

    1. Gruber isn’t a doctor and has never worked in the health care field. He is nothing but a hack economist who has spent his life trying to prove that socialized medicine is the best system. He should never have been allowed near this debate. Instead he helped draft the fucking law.

      1. Between him and Ezekiel Emmanuel it’s basically a plot to foist socialized healthcare on America while pretending not to.

        Remember, Ezekiel Emmanuel recently wrote an article saying that people over 75 shouldn’t get any more health care.
        Guess where that is going to lead?

        These people are the scum of the Earth. Anyone who says that Progressives of the 21th century don’t share any of the eugenicist tendencies of the 20th are blinding themselves in both eyes.

  26. It probably wouldn’t happen, but I’d like to really hope Gruber loses his position over this, just so I could make jokes about “Jonathan Gruber” being an anagram for “arrange job hunt”.

    1. If MIT were not run by leftists and had any integrity, he would. Why would any university want to employ someone who is so cavalier about lying to the public?

      1. I’d like to see him write a paper on “The Stupidity of the American Voter and the Necessity of Obfuscating When Legislating.” Just go all out, the Economics chapter in some modern version of The Prince.

    2. If SCOTUS disallows the issuing of subsidies to people in the federal exchange citing Gruber’s statements I wouldn’t be surprised if MIT finds a way of letting him go. Such a ruling would create a crisis within Obamacare and many Democrats in Congress will be willing to join with Republicans to make substantial changes to the law.

      1. I wonder when this is going to hit him in the face. Has anyone contacted him for comment yet? I can imagine Jonathan Chait and Ezra Klein somewhere between What the fucking fuck!? and Yo dude, haha, learn to work a mic yo. But what about Burwell, Obama, Jarrett? Someone’s gonna go down his throat.

  27. one of the effects of the bill would be to make healthy people pay for the sick

    I don’t get it. The healthy already paid for the sick, under every pre-Obamacare system that I can think of.

    1. Community rating stacks the deck even MORE in favor of the sick.

      To be more accurate, pre-ACA insurance rates are tied to your risk, based on health history. Post-ACA insurance rates are fixed to your age group, regardless of health history. Thus people who have been healthy in the past will pay more, people who have been unhealthy in the past will pay less.

      1. Along with making the healthy pay for the sick based on health history, the healthy pay for the sick based on age as well. Younger age cohorts are actuarially cheaper than older age cohorts by a factor of 5, but the maximum spread allowed by ACA is a factor of 3.

        1. Yes, this too.
          The health pay for the sick within their age cohort. The younger cohorts also pay for the older cohorts.

  28. “Honesty is for losers”

    Also: has anyone ever done a complete unpacking of the oft-repeated mantra of the left about how people continue to fail to “vote in their own interests“?

    I can’t believe this hasn’t been thrown back in their face with hotsauce on top. Mark Steyn, maybe?

    I mean, i know patronizing arrogance is the hallmark of the left, but this borders on “Evil Boss”-level rhetoric, spitting on the masses for their gullibility and naivete, laughing, “YOU FOOLS NEED PEOPLE LIKE ME!! YOUR ‘FREE WILL’ IS A LIE!!!”

    1. I can’t believe this hasn’t been thrown back in their face with hotsauce on top.

      Because they are so steeped in their own bullshit that it’s pointless:

      “Why would a woman vote Republican when they clearly have a war on women?”

      I mean, how do you counter that?

    2. Also: has anyone ever done a complete unpacking of the oft-repeated mantra of the left about how people continue to fail to “vote in their own interests”?

      Didn’t Gruber just do that for you? People don’t vote for their own interests because they are stupid. Alternatively, they don’t vote for their own interests because they have been confused by massive spending by the Koch brothers. Did I progsplain it to you well enough?

      The majority of Americans either don’t vote or vote against these people. Those that do vote for it are either motivated by self-interest or are wealthy enough not to have to care and think they are doing something for those less fortunate.

  29. Gruber possesses one great personality characteristic; he’s indiscrete. He keeps opening his mouth (fortunately) and giving the opposition ammunition. Dumb shit.

    1. He’s a perfessor, not a politician.

  30. “…but he was the one who was dumb enough to say all this on camera.”

    ..And, nothing else will happen. So, I have to ask, why was saying this on camera dumb?

    1. Realistically, what can be done? Some guy commits a Kinsley gaffe about some ancient 2010 history. Nothing actionable about that.

      But it sure can be propaganda fodder for the opponents of Big Nanny legislation. If the Party of Stupid finds a brain cell, they could throw that phrase in Hillary’s face a couple hundred times during the campaign.

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  32. This video should shock me.

    It doesn’t.

    The fact that a hack, a cheerleader, a partisan for socialized medicine, was allowed not only a hand in the debate, but to craft legislation should surprise me.

    It doesn’t.

    This is the progressive playbook in a nutshell: The ends justify the means. Principles do not exist, only outcomes. You can’t make an ommlette without cracking a few eggs. TOP. MEN.

  33. So, apparently I’m too stupid to make an informed decision about a poorly written piece of legislation. Hey Gruber, F U you turd. I hope that you and your elitist buddies all die in horrible fiery crashes. The ends justify the means with you liberal turd gurglers. Condescending oxygen- thieves. Psychopathic liberal nut-job.

  34. The GOP is going to use this over and over in the next election, if the ACA is still around.

    This story outlines one of my biggest problems with the democrats: the self-righetous elitism that just drips from the far left crowd. The democrats once were a party that supported the blue-coller working class Americans. They aren’t anymore. They despise the working class, thinking they are too stupid to vote and just want hand-outs.

  35. “That’s not exactly surprising, given that he failed to disclose payments from the administration to consult on Obamacare even while providing the media with supposedly independent assessments of the law.”

    And we’re to worry about the Koch Bros ™ of the world?

  36. Our president (and this bill) is a deceptive piece of shit.

  37. Sadly, even if the Repubs managed to get the White House in 2016 and repeal this POS they all know they would be burned at the stake for it. Don’t think for a second the Dems haven’t know that since it passed. No politician would be able to survive the Media onslaught of BS that would pour forth if they tried. Logic will never trump a well crafted river of sob stories from the leftie BS factories.

    1. Then don’t rely on logic. Craft some sob stories from the right.

  38. “he was the one who was dumb enough to say all this on camera.”

    I wonder if the Supreme Court has ever struck anything down just because of how egregious the tactics used to pass a piece of legislation.

    Something seems naturally wrong about this.

    Yeah, I know, dumb comment. I’m dumb enough to say this in a comment section. And nobody on the Supreme Court is as fucking colossally stupid about announcing their means to achieve their ends as this guy. He might as well have double-thumbed right back to himself and Obama and Pelosi as symbolic of everything wrong and cynical about the past eight years of this administration. “This guy!”

    1. “egregious the tactics used to pass a piece of legislation.”

      Check out Sissel v. HHS.

      “In October 2009, the House passed a bill that would have modified a tax credit for members of the armed forces and some other federal employees who were first-time home buyers ? a bill that had nothing to do with health care. Two months later the Senate “amended” this bill by obliterating it. The Senate renamed it and completely erased its contents, replacing them with the ACA’s contents.”

      Check out this link.

      You can view different iterations of ACA and see that the it used to be a totally different piece of legislation. The only thing remaining is the bill #.

  39. Look, I wish Mark was right that we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not.

    What a venal, mendacious fuckhead.

  40. What pisses me off the most is that the media was in the tank blatantly for this bill. Fox News provided better coverage of it than any of other major news outlets and anyone who dared to question it was dismissed as a right wing extremist Faux News watcher. Well, Fox has been right more than ABC/CBS/NBC on Obama’s BS.

    These fuckers in the media all told us it wasn’t a tax, they threw around those CBO numbers as if they meant something, and they downplayed that costs would go up for the young and healthy as well as the middle class in general.

    I expect politicians to lie. It’d be nice if we had a media more interested in doing their job of keeping them in check instead of a bunch of cheerleaders for guys with D’s by their names.

  41. Let’s look on the bright side of things. There should be 54 republican senators who vote for repeal. Add Manchin who campaigned against it, and you have got 55 votes. That means you need to peal away 5 more Dems to get cloture on repeal. This video gives cover to those five, who can say they would not have voted for it if they knew that the bill was drafted to game the CBO process. If you get to a repeal vote, Obama vetoes. Then you need to peal away 7 more to override the veto. At that point, this gets a lot more play, and who are the Senators who are going to fall on their swords for Harry Reid and Obama who led them into minority hell.

    1. Yes. This. ^^^

  42. Gruber […] said that in the video he misspoke.

    Mispeaking is something Democrats do to pass the time while the Republicans are busy lying. It is a trend started I believe by Hillary Clinton, a notorious mispeaker of epic proportions.

  43. We’re missing our standard heapin’ helping of lefty twits telling us this is really a good law and it’s doing what needs to be done. I guess it’s getting a bit difficult to make such ridiculous claims between this and the ‘sign-up’ numbers.
    But I’m sure that won’t stop them.

  44. Hi peter,

    Is this the type of article where right-wingers flip over a chair and bash themselves in the head? Those of us without a chip on our shoulder or an ideological axe to grind are left shrugging and saying so what. Is this like the Fast and Furious thing?

    1. A guy who runs around trolling a libertarian news site claiming he has no axe to grind is always good for a laugh, thanks.

      As to what it’s about, how about you watch the video and actually comment on what a guy who helped craft Obamacare says about how they got it passed? As in, they lied their asses off and misled voters and the CBO.

      That’s what this about.

      Tell us, American Socialist – what DOES qualify as a scandal to you?

      1. A RIGHT WINGER SAYING ABORTION IS BAD IS THE BIGGEST SCANDAL I CAN THINK OF

      2. “Tell us, American Socialist – what DOES qualify as a scandal to you?”

        This is a piece of shit who supports mass murderers; you think plain, old outright lies affects someone who is immune to ethics?

        1. The thought occurred to me, but I actually wanted to see if it would put up a legitimate argument or just drift off into the abyss like usual. I think we have the answer thus far as it vanished.

          The level of sleeze that people are willing to support their team in politics is pretty amazing to me. It’s completely tribal in nature.

      3. I would say lying about wmds to launch a decade long war in Iraq. But, I know, boooosch.

        Peter got called out on this shite when he peddled it before by… Dum, dum, dum– conservatives who actually have principles. It’s here, you can read it yourself: http://www.theamericanconserva…..-that-wasn‘t

        So, a.) I’m suspicious that an author who took a quote out of context wouldn’t do that again and b.) looking for some kind of significance. Gruben didn’t vote on the law, everyone knew that there would be people that paid more for insurance to help bring people who didn’t have health insurance into the market. So, again, what is the earth-shattering significance and why should I take the word of an author who likes to pull quotes out of context?

        1. I would say lying about wmds to launch a decade long war in Iraq.

          With the consent of congress and the American electorate.

          why should I take the word of an author who likes to pull quotes out of context?

          The above video has been left in full context as has every other damning thing those related to this admin have said. For instance: The “You didn’t build that” bit by Obo.

        2. So you are saying that because Bush and his administration lied, it’s OK for Obama and his administration to lie too?

        3. american socialist|11.11.14 @ 1:53AM|#
          “I would say lying about wmds to launch a decade long war in Iraq. But, I know, boooosch.”

          Hi, dipshit!
          I see you can point and say: LOOK OVER THERE!
          That’s a valuable skill for slime balls such as yourself.
          BTW, paid your mortgage yet?

          1. I thought he walked out on his mortgage. So shareholders of the lending institution will pick up the tab.

            Proton for AS: declare yourself a solar plant. You can get your government backed mortgage paid off by taxpayers.

            1. Chumby|11.11.14 @ 8:42PM|#
              “I thought he walked out on his mortgage. So shareholders of the lending institution will pick up the tab.”

              He did, so he ‘socialized’ the costs of his stupidity. It spreads, we all get a part of it.
              I just keep reminding him of what a slimy bastard he is.

              1. Fine for him to break a financial contract his wife signed but not fine for us to “break” a social contract we never signed.

    2. american socialist|11.10.14 @ 9:05PM|#
      “Hi peter,”

      Hi, you slimy asshole! You got any sort of excuse for supporting this kind of mendacity, asshole?
      Or are you just happy you get to use government thugs for your fantasies?

  45. I wonder what King Obama thinks about this video? What could be going on in his head right now if he were watching this? I kind of wonder, does he have one remorseful bone in his body about this? Yeah I know, I probably need not wonder much about that.

    I’d like to say that, now his failure is complete. But, there’s still two more years to go.

    Btw, Ron Paul Rocks!

  46. We’re all used to hearing politicians and their apologists use condescending, insulting remarks when referring to the opposition. But this yo-yo is calling his own supporters “stupid.” How amazingly smug and patronizing.

    1. They all do it. Most of them are just ‘humble’ enough to do it behind closed doors. This guy doesn’t have to run for office and is used to academia and lobbying. Basically, two areas where you get paid to talk as confidently as possible even when you have no clue. Like politics, only with even less accountability.

      Just remember this next election when all of those rock the vote campaigns start. Of course progressives want to get the ignorant out to vote – they are promising them ‘free’ shit. They aren’t delivering most of the time, but they are promising it.

  47. Turns out, passing it wasn’t sufficient to find out what was in it after all.

  48. “And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really really critical for the thing to pass….Look, I wish Mark was right that we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not.”

    So much for Democrats respect for democracy. This is corruption of the democratic process, not campaign contributions above a certain limit.

  49. From two data points, I conclude that to teach economics at MIT, you have to be a mendacious little shit.

    -jcr

  50. I can only hope his own words are the key piece of evidence for he supreme court to rule against subsidies in states that did not set up the exchange.

    1. Apparently, John Roberts has been bought off by the left so they will already have prepared a statement for him to justify his ruling that the law doesn’t actually mean what it says.

  51. Nancy Pelosi saying they have to pass it before the people find out what is in it.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV7dDSgbaQ0

    1. We passed it, and apparently we still don’t really know what’s in it.

  52. It is all very simple. If the healthcare law wasn’t an outrageous scam and ripoff, there would be no need to force people to buy into it.

  53. The progs are no longer afraid of exposing their Socialist/totalitarianism or the hundreds of thousands of dollars they receive from their deceit, which they are proud of. The ends always justify the means for them and sticking it to the little, if they gain financially or politically is in their DNA.

    1. you must be talking about Tea party and big corporations, right? Do you have a clue what socialism means?

      1. erin111|11.12.14 @ 12:04AM|#
        “you must be talking about Tea party and big corporations, right? Do you have a clue what socialism means?”

        Yes, dirtbag, everyone here knows what socialism means.
        It means mass murder.

  54. Look, on most topics I am a die-hard libertarian, but when it comes to health care I know two things:

    (1) Americans are not going to let people die in the streets.
    (2) Since Americans are not going to let people die in the streets then whatever system is set up to provide health care is going to pay for those who can not or will not do so.

    Now, the above being said up until Obamacare if you were sick and needed to go see a doctor, well you better have insurance or be able to pay out of pocket. Otherwise you either hopefully got in to see someone at a free clinic or eventually, when it got bad enough, ended up in the emergency room. Since there are not enough free clinics, charities and the like out there to take care of those who either could not or would not pay, then that meant that all of us paid when those sick people ended up in the emergency room to be treated, and we paid through the nose since that is the most expensive place to end up at for medical care.

    The only way to have a viable and inexpensive as possible heath care system is to take into account that all people are going to have access to it, whether you like that idea or not. Since all people are going to have access to it then you have to figure out a way to make that cost efficient and how to spread that cost out to everyone. Forcing everyone to either carry insurance or pay a penalty is the Obamacare route.

    1. I don’t think it is the best route, but once those penalties start getting high enough to make people who are healthy buy insurance, which will happen as the penalties scale up over time, then we will get closer to a 100% participation rate which should help spread the costs of healthcare for everyone to the largest pool possible.

      Now I can hear you die-hard, ideological libertarians screaming at your computer screen now … “You aren’t a libertarian! I shouldn’t be forced to buy something I don’t want and if I don’t want healthcare I should be able to go without it! Its my right!”.

      Well, you are wrong. Because you see the rest of us will not let you die in the street when your ideological principles don’t marry up too well with that heart attack you didn’t know was sneaking up on you from all those corn dogs you were eating. And since we will not let you die in the street, then it is our right to ensure that when we have to help pay to have those arteries of yours reworked a bit, the cost of doing so is as little to us as possible.

      Yes, I am actually a libertarian. I just realize that sometimes collectivism in an activity does trump individualism, and when it does we should be pragmatic enough to realize that.

      Here’s to you not dying in the street!

      1. Because you see the rest of us will not let you die in the street…

        There is a large range between “will not let you die in the street” and “will destroy the health care market for the 80% of you who can afford your own insurance”.

        1. To hell with the other 20%, right?

          1. erin111|11.12.14 @ 12:02AM|#
            “To hell with the other 20%, right?”

            Uh, care to defend that statement?

          2. To hell with the other 20%, right?

            No. The other 20% get some form of welfare designed to the greatest extent possible not to upset the otherwise fully functioning health care market.

            Obamacare intentionally upsets health insurance for everybody with coverage mandates and actuarially indefensible pricing requirements. These are not strictly required to help the 20%.

    2. Obamacare doesn’t spread out costs. People that couldn’t or wouldn’t afford health care are still not going to pay for health care. Obamacare just gave the free riders more claim on the supply.

    3. that meant that all of us paid when those sick people ended up in the emergency room to be treated, and we paid through the nose since that is the most expensive place to end up at for medical care.

      In contrast to what President Obama and others who sold Obamacare based on this story said, the emergency room is not even close to the most expensive way for the uninsured to get health care. Indeed, as was theoretically obvious before its passage and is now empirically obvious after its passage, Obamacare is a far, far more expensive way.

      Prior to the ACA, uncompensated health care in the US was a piddling 2-3% of health care spending, less than $100 billion a year. That’s a rounding error in the new health care costs brought by Obamacare.

      The emergency room is not the most expensive place to get medical care because the emergency room can triage the daylights out of the patients. Those with actual emergencies get an emergency room. Those without emergencies get a medical staff that has to be there in case of emergency and a long wait until those resources would otherwise be unused. It is actually pretty efficient. The only expensive thing that nonemergency care gets is the bill, which charges them an arm and a leg for emergency facilities that they in no way used.

      The real cost of nonemergency care in the ER is actually quite low. The stated cost is a mirage of hospital accounting in order to maximize revenues from those who can and do pay.

      1. Damon Wells|11.11.14 @ 3:46PM|#
        “Look, on most topics I am a die-hard libertarian, but when it comes to health care I know two things:
        (1) Americans are not going to let people die in the streets.
        (2) Since Americans are not going to let people die in the streets then whatever system is set up to provide health care is going to pay for those who can not or will not do so.”

        You may find it surprising that I agree. And we had an informal method of doing exactly that prior to O-care; those without insurance went to the ER. As Mike P mentions below, ER care is NOT the most expensive.
        In exchange, they got ‘good’ care. Not top of the line, run every test, care, but good care. And the incentives to the care-giver delivered that sort of care, while the cost of it was buried in the fees you and me paid.
        And it was done absent thousands of pages of regulations, thousands of new gov’t employees and without additional IRS involvement.
        The only real ‘problem’ is that slime balls like Obo, Pelosi and Gruber didn’t get to claim they’d ‘done something’

        1. American let die people on the streets!!! If not for Democrats in US bodies would lie on the streets! How old are you? You are very gullible!!!

          1. erin111|11.12.14 @ 12:00AM|#
            “American let die people on the streets!!! If not for Democrats in US bodies would lie on the streets! How old are you? You are very gullible!!!”

            Old enough to know you’re a fucking lefty imbecile.
            Buzz off; we’ve heard every goddam lie you can spout more times than an idjit like you can spout them.

          2. The Veterans Adminstration is a pilot program for single payer. Poor coverage. Poor result for any (why are there charities for disabled veterans when the VA should handle those needs). And secret death lists. Having the government running healthcare is like having a pedophile run a daycare.

      2. “The real cost of nonemergency care in the ER is actually quite low. The stated cost is a mirage of hospital accounting in order to maximize revenues from those who can and do pay.”

        And I would say those revenues amount to somewhere close to a profit of 7% or you can be sure I’d own the stock.

  55. That’s all very smart to discuss as the Supreme Court takes up the argument that the bill doesn’t clearly say that states without their own exchanges don’t get subsidies.

    Seems to greatly support the plaintiffs.

  56. American voters are really stupid if they don’t know that in EVERY health insurance, healthy people are paying for the sick!!! And they make an big issue of what Gruber said, pathetic! He just said the truth!!! Time to grow up and use your brains, if you have any? Well, truth is the most painful, right?

    1. I’d like to have the freedom to voluntarily purchase a plan that is designed around actuaries and not free lunches. I refer to this position as pro healthcare choice.

  57. Gruber says the GOP is trying to “confuse” Americans on Obamacare.

    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/jon…..obamacare/

    Are you confused by the fact that an architect of a law who was caught on camera saying that the law was was purposely written to confuse people is saying that the opponents of the law who benefited greatly from people hating on the law wants those people to be “confused” by the law, thereby accomplishing what the architect originally intended to do?

    At least he learned a valuable lesson, which is to not tell the truth in the presence of cameras.

    1. XM|11.12.14 @ 12:04AM|#
      “Gruber says the GOP is trying to “confuse” Americans on Obamacare.”

      That is RICH, isn’t it? From a guy who admits lying in order to promote what HE thinks is what people SHOULD have!
      Well, I think he SHOULD have spam for breakfast, lunch and dinner, a job that pays $8/hr and I’m willing to lie to make it happen!

  58. Ironically enough, most of these stupid voters have been busier this week looking up pictures of Kim Kardashian’s un photo shopped ass then talking about a scandal of this magnitude. It’s like at the end of A Face in the Crowd when Lonesome Roads finally gets caught being a manipulator only we’re still buying into the laugh track.

    1. Rednecks, crackers, hillbillies, hausfraus, shut-ins, pea-pickers — everybody that’s got to jump when somebody else blows the whistle. They don’t know it yet, but they’re all gonna be ‘Fighters for Obamacare’. They’re mine! I own ’em! They think like I do. Only they’re even more stupid than I am, so I gotta think for ’em. Nancy, you just wait and see. I’m gonna be the power behind the president — and you’ll be the power behind me!

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