Obamacare

Obamacare Architect Jonathan Gruber's Self-Defeating Strategy to Sell the Health Care Law

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Whitehouse.gov

For a sense of exactly how the deceptions that Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber has described played out in the selling of the law, it's worth reading Jake Tapper's piece at CNN on Gruber, Obama, and the health law's Cadillac Tax.

Tapper points to a statement by President Obama at a July 2009 health care townhall on the reasoning behind the tax, and then juxtaposes it with a recently unearthed remark by Gruber indicating that the purpose of the tax is not what Obama described. In fact, it's pretty much the opposite. 

At a town hall meeting on health care on July 23, 2009 in Shaker Heights, Ohio, Obama explained that the thinking of the Cadillac tax was to target plans that spend unnecessarily and excessively, thus driving up health care costs, such as a $25,000 plan, "so one that's a lot more expensive and a lot fancier than the one that even members of Congress get."

The thinking, Obama explained, was that "maybe at that point what you should do is you should sort of cap the exclusion, the tax deduction that is available, so that we're discouraging these really fancy plans that end up driving up costs."

The President at that point hadn't yet signed off on a Cadillac tax (he would eventually) but he did make the pledge: "what I said and I've taken off the table would be the idea that you just described, which would be that you would actually provide—you would eliminate the tax deduction that employers get for providing you with health insurance, because, frankly, a lot of employers then would stop providing health care, and we'd probably see more people lose their health insurance than currently have it. And that's not obviously our objective in reform."

MIT

Gruber's explanation of the thinking was a little bit different. To be precise, it was the opposite of what Obama said.

Gruber starts by noting that economists really don't like the tax subsidy for employer-provided health insurance, that it's terrible public policy, but that politically it's very difficult to end. Here's how Tapper describes the rest of what Gruber says. 

Gruber said the only way those pushing for Obamacare could get rid of the tax subsidy for employer provider health insurance was to tax the more generous, or Cadillac, plans—"mislabeling it, calling it a tax on insurance plans rather than a tax on people when we all know it's a tax on people who hold those insurance plans."

The second way was have the tax kick in "late, starting in 2018" and have its rate of growth tied to the consumer price index instead of to the much higher rate of medical inflation. Eventually, the 40% tax on the more expensive plans would impact every employer-provided insurance plan.

"What that means is the tax that starts out hitting only 8% of the insurance plans essentially amounts over the next 20 years essentially getting rid of the exclusion for employer sponsored plans," Gruber said. "This was the only political way we were ever going to take on one of the worst public policies in America."

As Tapper writes, this is exactly what Obama promised had been "taken off the table."

This is an issue on which Gruber can presumably speak with some authority. By Gruber's own account, he was in the room with President Obama when the Cadillac tax was designed, and that it was designed in order to avoid the political backlash that Obama believed was sure to accompany any effort to get rid of the employer tax exclusion in a straightforward manner. 

Now, as it happens, I think Gruber was right on the merits of the subsidy for employer benefits: It's bad policy.

But Obama didn't really make the case that it was bad policy. Instead, he said that ending the employer tax break was something he wouldn't do, and that he didn't support ending it because doing so would lead to negative consequences. 

And then, behind closed doors, he said the more or less the opposite: He agreed that it was a problem, and that it needed to go, and worked with Gruber to devise a mechanism that would eventually end it or significantly reduce its effects. 

Even if you like the result, even if you agree that the tax exclusion was a problem that needed to be addressed, this is not a good policy process. It's built on manipulation and obfuscation rather than on straightforward argument about the merits of a change, and it ends up producing workaround policies that are made as much to conceal their purpose as to produce a desired effect. It's not about convincing the public; it's about misleading them and hoping they don't catch on.

And, as a result, it's the sort of strategy that inevitably backfires, even when it "works" in the sense that it produces a legislative win. It attempts to avoid one sort of political backlash, but ends up creating another. It's self-defeating. 

With Obamacare, the results are plain to see. If you want to understand why public support for the health law is so low, this sort of thing is one of the reasons why. People generally don't like processes designed to mislead them, and with Obamacare, they feel misled because, well, they were. 

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    1. Why is Suderman writing so much about Gruber, when some other Reason blogger didn’t write as much about the Iraq war 10 years ago? Reason’s real priorities are all too clear!

      1. Yeah. So what? Does that invalidate things being written about Gruber?

        1. He’s joking, T-dog. He’s actually just mocking those who would do that.

        2. Mocking amsoc in particular, who was arguing that Reason is obsessed with Gruber because different writers didn’t give as much attention to this or that several years ago.

          1. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH

        3. Thanks, Epi. Sorry, MJ.

  1. To be fair, I can easily see Obama and any number of other politicians being too ignorant of economics and policy to understand the implications of what they supported.

    1. Agree. Call it the stupidity of the American nobleman.

      I also think it’s possible that Nancy Pelosi actually doesn’t remember Gruber all that well. Sociopaths like her tend to marginalize the role of others in their achievements. She probably read his name in a speech someone wrote for her – recognizing not who he was or what role he had played, but that mentioning his name would lend her credibility for the 15 seconds she needed it. A very savvy Dem (oxymoron?) would be flipping so hard on Gruber right now – given how unpopular ObamaCare is. Easy to say: “Well, shit. That guy really deceived us all. The only way forward from this is single-payer – let’s roll up our sleeves and get to work.”

  2. But I agree with Gruber, the American electorate is stupid.

    1. Yes, and he’s so smart. Notice how no one is saying this law can’t be repealed? Unlike virtually every other welfare program ever devised? It’s that stupidly formulated. And the law’s very existence and fuckedupedness is wreaking havoc on the Democrats at the polls.

      But no, people are idiots, he’s a genius.

      1. Can’t voters be dumb animals that voted for what they thought was free shit while at the same time Gruber is a venal craven prick who’s crime was being honest about the administration’s goals?

        1. It’s not stupid people I’m defending; it’s stupid TOP MEN who think they’re brilliant. There seems to be a huge surplus on those lately. Maybe there was a sale?

        2. The American people have never supported this disgusting shit sandwich.

          There are portions of it that are popular, such as being guaranteed coverage even with pre-existing conditions, but taken as a whole both the law and the process that was used to pass it have been mostly hated by America.

          1. Most of the people that supported it also did so until they found out they would have to pay for it.

            Remember, these are the people that like programs that cost a ton and waste a lot, but don’t mind them because other people are made to pay for these programs.

      2. He has to be a genius, ProL! He invented Obamacare or something! See? Automatic genius!

        1. Not only is he an idiot for his role in a law that not only doesn’t work, it’s popularly viewed as a failure, he’s also an idiot for running his mouth. Idiot squared!

          1. Sounds more like idiot cubed, ProL. Just like your mom.

            1. Mom jokes… Those are the best..

              You can close the argument out by telling everyone to get off the mom jokes because you just got off their mom.

              1. Never. Gets. Old.

      3. Con artists always think they’re smarter and more clever than everyone else, especially their victims. They aren’t smarter – they’re just more dishonest.

  3. so one that’s a lot more expensive and a lot fancier than the one that even members of Congress get.

    Because WE’RE TOP MEN, and we should be AT THE TOP IN ALL THINGS.

    1. The casual way that got tossed in really is a slap in the face. Fancier than congressmen get ? I ask you, can you get any fancier ? And the answer is, none.

      Such a fine line between clever and stupid.

  4. The more I read about the processes they devise to move chess pieces around the board, the more vile I realize they are.

    1. Fucking evil fucks is what they are.

    2. You’re just getting this now? Are you also realizing that disco might be dead?

      1. Disco is deader than Lou Reed.

        1. Lou Reed is dead? Why didn’t reason tell me?

          1. WTF, when did this happen???

            1. Right after teh gaiz marruj started to be “OK”.

              Coincidence?

      2. I got shit to do I can sit around all day realizing things.

  5. So, CNN is actually covering this now? The media in this country really is useless. On one hand, they should jump all over this story because they were part of the dumb rubes that Gruber and Obama manipulated. On the other hand, they’ve painted themselves into such a small corner by being dem lap dogs, how can they object to anything the administration does now without losing all remaining credibility?

    1. CNN’s ratings are in the toilet. So they must be looking to become Fox Jr.

  6. Even Jon Stewart goes after the Democrats a bit. He still takes his shots at the Republicans and probably still think the PPACA is a good idea. But, When you lose Jon Stewart well.

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/l…..ruber-gate

    1. If that’s Stewart taking the gloves off when it comes to Democrats, well, I’d say they don’t have much to worry about.

  7. one that’s a lot more expensive and a lot fancier than the one that even members of Congress get.”

    I realize this is an old quote but damn does it speak volumes about how this guy feels about the peasants. How dare they have a plan better than us!

  8. Gruber only visited the WH 19 times: http://www.whitehouse.gov/brie…..or-records

    1. He must be a pretty inconspicuous guy if he visited that many times and they still have no idea who he is.

      1. It’s part of the transparency the administration has been working on.

  9. Sure it’s bad policy but it didn’t just development out of nowhere. Employers started giving employees benefits like insurance because income taxes were so high it didn’t make sense to pay them more.

    Big government shitheads using manipulation to try to fix the results of big government – with more big government.

    1. But, more big government is the only thing that can fix big government!

      1. Now you’re talking!

    2. Employers started offering health insurance benefits back in WW2 because the government had enacted wage controls and employers were looking for another way to offer benefits that weren’t subject to the cap in order to complete for employees.

    3. I thought they started because there were wage freezes in either WWII or the Great-New-Deal-Depression. I’m also too lazy to google it.

      1. And the top rate was 91%. Makes it people very motivated to stay in a lower rate.

  10. The second way was have the tax kick in “late, starting in 2018” and have its rate of growth tied to the consumer price index instead of to the much higher rate of medical inflation. Eventually, the 40% tax on the more expensive plans would impact every employer-provided insurance plan.

    I didn’t know about this part.

    And I’m a pretty close observer of this law.

    I guess they hid this particular consequence so far in the future that even I wouldn’t see it. Fuck.

    1. So there master plan is to force more and more people onto the exchanges that everyone hates?

      1. There master plan is single payer.

        1. ^^^^THIS^^^^

      2. I think the master plan WAS to force people onto the exchanges.

        But then Obama panicked and got worried that there were too many stories in the press about employers canceling plans.

        So now the employers face hefty penalties (completely made up out of whole cloth by the IRS) if they cancel plans.

        So even if your employer WANTS to help you avoid the Cadillac tax by canceling your plan and paying you more in salary instead (as one part of the law wants) they won’t be able to, because Obama later decided he didn’t want that. You’ll sit there and pay that 40% tax and if you don’t like it fuck you.

  11. Gruber?!? I just met her!

    1. LIAR!!! Everyone knows you raped her like a seal on a penguin!!!

      1. Oh, I think we have a new meme.

        1. Anything to do with The Penguin Joke?
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCiIBfEKCds

      2. No, that was your mom!

      3. Is it bad that I couldn’t help laughing at the rapey seal vs. penguin video? It was like a cartoon that Tex Avery would have made when he was very, very drunk.

        1. Except with cute Chuck Jones characters.

    2. For shame, Epi. Welch beat you to that one… what, Monday? (see Independents post)

      Side note:

      You mentioned the game ‘Borderlands’ once a few weeks ago. I Dl’d. I played. 2nd playthrough now. Good stuff. Best overall FPS/RPG style game I’ve seen in years.

      (Fallout and Bioshock being the others)

      just wanted to say thanks for mentioning it.

      1. I was busy Monday.

        Which Borderlands did you get? 1, 2, or the Pre-Sequel? They’re all great, but if you like them, I suggest playing them in order. They make more sense that way (though admittedly story is not a major factor in Borderlands), and you will get untold hours of gameplay out of them. I’m playing the Pre-Sequel now, as Nisha, and her action skill (Showdown) is the best out of any class in all the games, in my opinion.

  12. As someone on this forum said recently, in another post, every supporter of the original Obamacare bill should have to write a 5 page essay (in cursive, no typing, single-spaced on college-ruled paper, and yes, spelling and grammar counts) answering this question:

    Gruber suggested that the ACA would not have had the support it had if it had not been intentionally deceptive. The process was deception to get people to support it who wouldn’t otherwise if they understood it. Did you support or oppose Obamacare when it was passed? If you opposed it, why? If you supported it, were you in on the lie or were you one of those that Gruber and his gang had to dupe?

    It really is fascinating. Gruber is asking the country to break themselves into three categories: Opposed to the bill, Dirty rotten liar, Useful Idiot.

    1. It really is fascinating. Gruber is asking the country to break themselves into three categories: Opposed to the bill, Dirty rotten liar, Useful Idiot.

      Isn’t that the breakdown for most bills?

      1. It’s missing “cronyist scumbag” and “nanny statist shitbag”.

        1. I figured those were subsets under “Dirty rotten liar,” but I suppose some particular individuals would fit much more comfortably under those labels.

          1. The taxonomy of politicians is quite complex. Once you get down to the genus level there is quite a lot of diversity. Though their domain, politicianus douchebaggus, is the catch-all.

    2. It’s really quite the choice, isn’t it? See why bill supporters can’t distance themselves from him fast enough?

      We don’t get a lot of perfectly delicious moments like this one. But here we have, courtesy of Gruber. Thank him.

    3. Back in 2010, the closest I’d get to a concrete reason to support PPACA was the nonsense about controlling costs and “bending the cost curve.” That seems to be part of “the lie” that Gruber was peddling, so I’m going to assume those people were not in on it.

  13. I’ll admit my economics knowledge needs improvement, so can someone please explain why a few people paying more for things makes all versions of that thing more expensive?

    I mean, to continue the analogy, Cadillac’s existence doesn’t mean GM can’t still make cheaper cars, unless I’m missing something?

    1. To clarify, I’m asking because I don’t understand the assumption that “Cadillac plans” will drive up all costs.

      1. Because by federal law, everyone has to buy a Cadillac. GM can’t even offer to sell cheaper cars.

        1. At least we get to choose between a shitty overpriced Cadillac and a shitty way overpriced Cadillac.

      2. Well that’s a pretty broad question. An example would be that your employer covers all your health care with no deductables or co-pays. So than you make no attempt to keep those down because they don’t impact you. Have the sniffles, go see the doctor. Like the nurses ass, go see the doctor. The assumption is also that you won’t worry about healthy habits because of that too although I find that argument somewhat weak. And in fact would seem to fly in the face of their other arvument for more well visits and preventative care.

        1. O0en the insurance market up to more competition ensures plenty of options and opportunities to drive down cost and put more money back im your pocket.

        2. To follow on AlmightyJB’s point (and an addendum to mine below)

          There is a cost-inflation effect from the fact that there is a perverse incentive for companies to ‘overpay’ for healthcare. its the same thing driving education costs – when you don’t pay for something out of your own pocket, you don’t care about price so much; and since companies can deduct health expenses, they’re happy spending as much as they can per employee. The medical industry responds in kind by charging $100s just to walk through the door.

          While that is true – the idea of *taxing* ‘excessive cost’ plans as a means to reduce costs remains a lie. Their goal (as noted) was to gradually eliminate all employer provided healthcare entirely.

          1. Also, if your employee gave you the cash and you purchased your own health insuarnce juse as with your car insurance you would probably except a higher dedctable to get more bang for your bucj policy wise. Tax incentives like MSA’s could still be offered to help offset costs.

      3. “Robert Falcon Scott|11.19.14 @ 2:51PM|#

        … I don’t understand the assumption that “Cadillac plans” will drive up all costs.”

        because its a bald lie?

        what they object to is the fact that businesses have every incentive to offer lucrative healthcare as ‘compensation’ instead of regular pay or bonuses because of its tax exemption. Both the employer and employee make off great from the deal, and SadFace Government doesn’t get their bite.

        Making matters worse, the medical industry sees this, and caters to high-income plans by segmenting service levels. SadFace government is further upset that there is no mandated equal-access in the provision of care.

        Gruber said it better than anyone = the ACA was 90% about changing the rules to mandate insurance content and attempt to increase equal-access… and only 10% related to cost-control – and that 10%? was still stuff they were unsure would actually have any real cost-control effect, and was rather just stuff they were ‘throwing against the wall’ to see what would stick

        1. YEs Gilmore, all of that. You summed up the entire thing perfectly.

        2. I wish someone would throw Gruber against the wall until he sticks.

    2. It doesn’t drive up cost, that was one of the lies Gruber and Obama told to get it passed.

    3. Because when I see somebody driving a nice new Cadillac, I get envious and feel bad about myself. To make me feel better about being a loser, the government is going tax Cadillacs until I stop seeing them.

      It’s how the government helps people.

      1. I don’t think I’ve heard leftism described quite so well before. Well done.

      2. Tony in a nutshell. He doesn’t want a Cadillac too – he just doesn’t want anyone else to have one.

  14. Hey Mr. McArdle! I just heard Mrs. McArdle’s latest “business minute” on Bloomberg radio. Her analysis of Abenomics is spot on. And she wrapped it up with a curiously free-market recommendation. At dinner tonight, tell her at least one Reasonoid was pleased with her work this week.

  15. Apparently he’s still pissed about the missing detonators.

    1. HO HO HO NOW I HAVE A MACHINE GUN

  16. Eventually, the 40% tax on the more expensive plans would impact every employer-provided insurance plan.

    May Obama and Gruber spend eternity in hell fucking each other in the ass.

    1. Well for fraud of this level it’s at least the Eighth Circle for them. So it’s being whipped by demons and boiled in pitch for them.

      1. Tenth Circle Added to Rapidly Growing Hell: http://www.theonion.com/articl…..-hell,507/

  17. Obama sucks so bad, he may be wearing out the word “liar”. The word itself may become useless in the future–it might lose its disparaging aspect. Dictionaries in the future may list it as “liar: obamaesque”.

    Even now, when I point out to some people that Obama is a liar, they look at me like I just told them that the sky is blue or something. We live in a society where everyone knows our President is a wholesale liar.

    Is there anything more useless than a “noble” liar–that no one believes anymore?

      1. Fuck you. I keep two of those with my banana slicer.

        1. Of course you do.

          Also, what the actual fuck?

          1. Maybe you’d like to try that again without SugarFree’s help?

              1. Well those play into some nice stereotypes…

              2. Honestly, less creepy than love pillows.

                1. I guess this solves the eternal mermaid debate regarding whether men would prefer the top half or the bottom half to be the fishy part.

                  As for me, I always prefer my boyfriends to be paraplegic, so this is right up my alley.

                  1. If cloning ever becomes commonplace, I wonder if you could find a market for fleshy, brainless versions of those pillows. Feeding them and clean up would probably be horrible though.

      2. It depends on how deep you’re gonna stick your face in the bowl and how long your hair is.

        I knew a guy that used to huff pain in high school. He walked into class one day, and the geometry teacher immediately sent him to the principles office.

        He was wondering how everyone knew what he’d been doing, but he didn’t realize he was walking around with a big circle of paint on his face surrounding his mouth and nose…

        He could have used that thing!

        Calling Obama a liar is useless. It’s like pointing out the wetness of water.

        1. Huffing pain? Now that sounds badass.

          1. And the school had an office full of principles. Probably crappy principles, but principles nonetheless.

            1. Unwavering principles.

          2. Paint.

            He was huffing paint.

            out of a can

            autocorrct sucks donkey alls.

  18. this is not a good policy process.

    Sure it is. As long as there is a concerted effort to collapse your presidency no matter the cost, obfuscation is very much an important part of making policy.

    Gruber’s only problem is that he’s not a politician and thus says things bluntly. But no matter what he or Obama said, the law does what it does, and the American people don’t have the first fucking clue what that is. And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.

    1. But no matter what he or Obama said, the law does what it does, and the American people don’t have the first fucking clue what that is. And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.

      The derp is so dense, it actually forms a singularity. It’s spinning so fast, though, that it lacks an event horizon.

    2. We have to pass it to see what’s in it.

      1. Wow that’s so fucking clever I have only read that about ten billion times today. Dear lord one little thing gets traction for years and years with you idiots. Tell me again about Monica and the cigar.

        1. I can actually smell the fear through my computer.

          1. That’s actually just sockpuppet incense.

          2. As can I. You can see it in it’s typing.

        2. Seriously, dumb fucks saying dumb fuck things never get over played by progs.

          1. Well now you know what she meant.

        3. Oh Tony, that feeling you feel? It’s humiliation. Abject and utter humiliation.

          Your gods have shat upon you Tony. You are trying to deny that the stuff dripping down your face is shit, that the smell has nothing to do with the rivulets running down your face, that it’s a heavenly oil that they are annointing you with.

          But we know it’s shit. And you know we know.

          But here’s is the thing… you don’t have to stand under their ani. You don’t have to be shat upon by anyone. You can try thinking for yourself for a change. Be skeptical of people who put on the mantle of godhood.

          Because no matter how much you try to bluff and pretend otherwise, you are covered in someone else’s shit, and we can see that you are choosing to let them shit all over you. You aren’t fooling anyone.

          1. Nothing is going to convince me that inbred fucktards who don’t believe in science are the ones who are going to make this country better. Sorry.

            1. Nothing is going to convince me that inbred fucktards who don’t believe in science are the ones who are going to make this country better.

              This isn’t an article on Daily Kos praising Hillary Clinton, so it’s a bit of a non-sequitur, don’t you think?

              1. don’t you think?

                No, ‘Tony’ does not think. Obviously.

            2. Why? Because they weren’t the ones that did make it a better place to live than Europe?

              You are rank with Fear Tony, and I love it.

            3. Nothing is going to convince me that inbred fucktards who don’t believe in science are the ones who are going to make this country better. Sorry.

              Gee, if only there was some group that wasn’t advocating a choice between two shitty options…

              1. You guys don’t believe in science either.

                1. That’s new to me, a practicing professional scientist that believes AGW is real and supports the use of GMOs and vaccines.

                  Try again.

                2. Tony, anybody who speaks in terms of believing in science is discussing the faith of a religious movement.

                  Science is a process that if followed allows a person to winnow out bad hypotheses about how the universe works from a pool of possibly accurate hypotheses.

                  One doesn’t believe in it anymore than one believes in baking bread or in driving a car.

                  And you might benefit from reading this essay by a Labour minister in the UK’s House of Lords explaining why his party has embraced the millennial religion of CAGW and Greenism. I quote the first paragraph as an enticement and encourage you to read it.

                  Climate change and the left

                  The issue of why the political left is overwhelmingly supportive of the climate change alarmist ideology/faith, and hence there are relatively few left wing sceptics, is quite complex and would take more space and time than I intend to impose on you here. But may I, as a lifelong Labour supporter, offer a couple of broad observations. They are by no means comprehensive and omit many nuances. But they are major general factors which I have observed in the party for 61 years, and in Parliament for almost 30 years.

                  1. From the link:

                    For Ed Miliband, who is not a bad or stupid man, but coming from a Marxist heritage, when asked for more vision, he grasps climate change like a drowning man clasping a lifebelt.

                    Marxism is the epitome of evil and stupidity. What then does it take to be a “bad and stupid man” if it isn’t coming from such a heritage? Bad intentions? But the intentions of Marxism are evil.

          2. That was fucking poetry tarran.

          3. Bra-fucking-visimo!

        4. Tell me again about Monica and the cigar

          Wouldn’t you rather just sniff Hillary’s cigar?

    3. Tony, so you really believe the policy is good, it’s just that Gruber delivered it all wrong? Cool.

      1. If they managed to figure out a way to phase out bad policy in a way that avoided bad politics, good for them. I’d think you guys would be cynical enough to agree with the point. What if the only way to get rid of bad policy is to fudge the truth about what you’re doing? Republicans lie every single day about everything in their attempt to get their way.

        1. Tony,

          Gruber knows that the bill is designed to rob people like you. He is just admitting the truth that he and the Democrats get you to support it by relying on your economic illiteracy.

          Someone above said it best. With regards to this bill after Gruber the country can now be divided into three groups; opponents, liars and useful idiots.

          Which one are you. I know everyone here will say useful idiot but I wouldn’t ever sell your dishonesty short.

          1. I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to get his stupid head out of the FOX News bubble for like a week and detox his brain from the mindless zombie groaning bullshit you people take for reality. This law is a modest attempt to begin the process of doing what everybody who’s not a retard knows we need to do as a civilized country. Its actual intent is to help people. When was the last time Republicans did anything to help anyone who wasn’t a very rich person? In the last half century or so. Can you name one thing?

              1. Nobody can ever name anything.

                1. Nobody can ever name anything.

                  Actually, it’s that your talking points are so fucking idiotic and divorced from reality and the issue at hand that there is no sense in even responding to them. It would take too long to try to correct all the derp, which is beside the actual point, anyway. You mendacious little fuck.

                2. They passed the Civil Rights Act despite Democrat filibuster attempts.

            1. Now you’re calling me a retard? For listening to Gruber? Who wrote this fucking law?

              Also it is clear that only intention matter to you. Look at the outcomes so far. Look at them!

              1. And, uh, dude, “retard” is not the preferred nomenclature.

            2. The law was designed to tax people with good health insurance, reduce their standard of living and give it to the poor. Gruber has said as much. And he got people like you to support it because you are so stupid you don’t understand what it is doing. In response to that you say

              his law is a modest attempt to begin the process of doing what everybody who’s not a retard knows we need to do as a civilized country.

              Thanks for self identifying as just the kind of useful idiot and economic illiterate Gruber is talking about. Your being stupid is always the safe bet no matter how dishonest you are.

              You are beyond satire Tony. Just beyond satire. Sometimes you walk into things so easily it is ALMOST not fun giving you the opportunity to make a fool of yourself.

              1. So when you type all these words and say nothing of substance, do you actually think you’re saying something of substance, or are you aware that it’s totally devoid of it?

                1. No Tony there is a lot of substance. The substance is anyone who thinks this was a modest bill and not a bill designed to screw the middle class is the kind of idiot Gruber was talking about. Again, thanks for self identifying.

            3. Its actual intent is to help people.

              Once upon a time, I was an uninsured and healthy 27 year old male.

              The actual intent of this law is to fuck that guy in the ass as hard as possible.

              There isn’t one fucking thing in this law to help the guy that I was. Every last thing in the law is a deliberate attempt to rape that guy as severely as possible to “help” people richer than he was, or in demographics the Democrats prefer.

              Can you name one thing?

              The Reagan tax cuts did more to help me personally – a non-very-rich person – than any other public policy initiative in my lifetime.

            4. When was the last time Republicans did anything to help anyone

              Because two wrongs make a right!

            5. How about welfare reform in the mid 90s? Various tax breaks targeted at the middle class? Ending the Cold War? The War in Vietnam? The interstate system? Protecting the 2A (you may not like it, but it certainly isn’t helping rich people)?

            6. Well, considering that the vast majority of the Bush tax cuts went to the poor and middle class, I’d say that counts.

            7. Tony|11.19.14 @ 3:36PM|#

              I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to get his stupid head out of the FOX News bubble for like a week and detox his brain from the mindless zombie groaning bullshit you people take for reality.

              wtf?

              “Tony” is a homosexual guy, sockpuppet. So unless you’ve had a sex change operation to deal with your homosexuality, I’d say you just fucked up your little scam.

            8. This law is a modest attempt to begin the process of doing what everybody who’s not a retard knows we need to do as a civilized country.

              Oh yes. By robbing Peter to pay Paul. By sacrificing some for the sake of others. How terribly “civilized” of you. What’s on tap next for you atavists – tearing the still beating hearts out of virgins to offer to the gods? Move to the Islamic State – you’ll feel right at home there. Fuck you!

        2. That seems so petty, immoral, and inconsistent. If the people must be deceived to accept policy then how does the policymaker know their plan is right for the people?

          1. Because the issue is settled. Universal healthcare is good for countries. The only reason we don’t have it is because of the poisonous influence of corporations and the slack-jawed minions who do their bidding in elections. Those of you who think people who can’t afford health insurance or care should just fuck off and die, I don’t consider serious people.

            1. It’s the law of the land, people!

              Once it’s the law, the debate is over!

              /ceaseless crowing

            2. The only reason we don’t have it is because of the poisonous influence of corporations

              You mean those same corporations who are benefiting from Obamacare and will be its biggest defender when the country demands it be repealed? You mean those?

              http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11……html?_r=0

              Your solution to corporate influence is to create a bill that pays them off and forces everyone to do business with them.

              If Obama told you to fucking kill yourself, you would do it, wouldn’t you?

              1. Seems that the only way we can get positive change in this country is to find things that corporate America will sign off on. I didn’t create that system. Your guys did in fact.

                1. Your guys did in fact

                  Yes, it is common knowledge that libertarians created government large enough to be irresistibly exploited by corporations.

                  Could you try that again? This time with fewer derptastic talking points?

            3. Because the issue is settled.

              Consensus! All debate and discussion is cut off and irrelevant because ‘Tony’ says so!

              What a dishonest little cunt you are.

            4. TEH SCIENCE IZ SETTUHLDUH!

            5. But we WON! It’s not FAIR!!

              My 7 year old niece whines less than you.

            6. Look, even if I agreed with this – and I don’t – we already had a safety net healthcare program for people who got really, really life-changingly sick.

              It was called Medicaid.

              But the thing about Medicaid is that it kicks in once you’ve exhausted every other asset. It’s for the actual poor, and not for people who think that they should be able to make me pay for their health care (through the mandate and through community rating and through the pre-existing conditions rules) before they’ve exhausted their own assets, even when they have more money than me.

              I don’t think we should brutalize the lower middle class with the mandate and brutalize young people with community rating so that we can protect the assets of older and richer people, Tony.

            7. You mean in countries like mine, where doctors from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Canadian Medical Association are calling for privatization options specifically because public healthcare is not capable of fulfilling demands and are prompting large scale heathcare tourism to the United States?

            8. You are so fucking stupid you actually believe universal healthcare is achievable, let alone good.

              The corpses of the people denied life saving care would like to have a word with you. Immoral fucking cunt.

            9. Okay, Tony. I get that you want socialized medicine. I’ll tell you what. Why don’t we petition Congress to put your medical care under the charge of the VA and your local free clinic. The only stipulation is, that’s all you get. Up for it?

              1. Not getting the point of universality huh?

                1. So, you want everyone stuck with the VA and local free clinic. Yeah, you’re a real fucking saint.

                2. It is symptom of progressive OCD,

            10. Those of you who think people who can’t afford health insurance or care should just fuck off and die, I don’t consider serious people.

              And that would be no one. So what about the rest of us?

              1. Same thing as “sprinkle magic market dust.” Same outcome, different excuse.

                1. Same thing as “sprinkle magic market dust.”

                  Like as all progressives, this just proves, unwittingly, the true contempt they have for the common man.

                  As that’s all the “free market” is. Free people working to better themselves, and by doing so will try to benefit others as that is how one betters their lot.

                  You see it as magical, but you know better. You just have such little regard for others that no only are you willing, at gun point, to force other more productive citizens to pay for things you can get yourself by working, but also think that only by following the laws Top Men, who conveniently believe as you, can/will people ever do the right thing – with force of course (since we all know that only reason anyone does anything right is because of fear of the prison system – it’s why salespeople don’t lie and why restaurants don’t poison you).

                  At least you’re consistent – you think all others are both too stupid to make decisions for themselves, as well as being undeserving of the results of their labor should they accidentally make any good decisions or just by luck land one of those cushy jobs with a golden parachute which wouldn’t exist without Obama and other government.

                  Well, undeserving as long as you believe other’s products of their labor can be used to better results for people like you.

                  And there it is. Contempt.

                  Contempt for their abilities and contempt/jealous for their status.

                  Consistency.

                  It’s almost…. magical.

            11. “Because the issue is settled. Universal healthcare is good for countries”

              And there he goes again – another affirmative condition claim he’s not the least bit capable of proving.

              He’s maintained his perfect 000 batting average on every single affirmative conditon claim he’s ever made about anything.

          2. They don’t care if it is or isn’t right for ‘the people’. They don’t care one stitch about ‘the people’. The only thing they care about is feeling good.

            1. The funniest thing about this is that Tony isn’t one of them. He won’t get any of the benefits of this law. He is not on the inside. He is a real life useful idiot that people like Obama and Gruber rely on.

              Tony wakes up every day thinking he is doing the right thing and it will only be the evil corporations and Republicans who will pay for it. Meanwhile people like Gruber cash their consulting checks and laugh their asses off at him and everyone like him.

            2. Actually the things they care about are their hold on power and how to fatten their own and the connected few they know’s pocket books.

              They pretend to do things for “good” reasons, getting the morons they take advantage of to go along because of their jealousy and envy of others, towards those ends.

              1. Yes Alex. And Tony is one of the said envious morons.

        3. Republicans lie every single day about everything in their attempt to get their way.

          This must be the Dem talking point they are going with in their desperate attempts to deflect. I’ve heard it from several Dem operative talking heads recently on the political and news shows.

          1. But they do. They lie all the time. Far more than they tell the truth. That’s rather shocking but not so much if you consider that they decided their entire purpose for existing was to oppose everything that Democrats do no matter what it is.

            1. It isn’t shocking to us at all. What appears to be shocking to you is that your Team is just as good at it, if not better.

            2. Politicians lie all the time, yes – especially Democrat politicians. But even the everyday Democrat rank and file probably lies more than most Republicans and conservatives I’ve ever met. Liars, beggars, and thieves for the most part.

        4. Some people just like being lied to. Others just want a king. Tony is both.

    4. So the will of the people is all important. Unless you need to lie to the peasants to advance your agenda.

      1. The will of the people is manifested in who gets elected. Then those people are supposed to go do what the people vaguely indicate they want. The process is not voted upon nor is it terribly important for people to understand. I am in favor of cigar-smoke-filled back-room deals. Things used to get done when we had those.

        1. One item for Obama’s legacy: Mainstreaming sociopathy.

        2. The will of the people is manifested in who gets elected.

          So, you mean the GOP controlled Congress?

          1. Sure. Let them try out their proposals and see how they sell.

            1. I am pretty sure they did and it resulted in the biggest midterm landslide since the 20s.

              The country did one thing this November, told people like you and Obama to shut the fuck up and stop it. If the Democrats don’t get that message and kick your dumb asses out of the party, it is going to be a very hard lesson in 2016.

              1. Funny the 20s were the other big backlash against progressivism. Is Obama really Woodrow Wilson? Will the 2020s be the second roaring 20s, except with better drugs?

                Cool. cool cool cool.

                1. Never mind. I’m bad at history and scatterbrained as all get out.

                2. Better drugs and no prohibition.

                  And yes, the last Ivy League moron prog we elected President was Wilson. And he was just as evil and just as incompetent as Obama, though he was a lot smarter than Obama. But in fairness most people are smarter than Obama.

            2. Can they lie to get them sold to the public?

        3. I am in favor of cigar-smoke-filled back-room deals. Things used to get done when we had those.

          Democracy at it’s finest!

          Who do you think is going to benefit from those smoke-filled back-room deals? Especially when you give the ruling class license to lie. Who the fuck is actually sitting at the table?

          Holy. Fuck. And you accuse libertarians of being responsible for the corporate influence in politics?

          How are people supposed to express their will through the election of representatives when those representatives are *supposed* to lie to the people??????

        4. I am in favor of cigar-smoke-filled back-room deals.

          In other words, public corruption.
          End justify the means much?

        5. The will of the people is manifested in who gets elected.

          In what way can any election manifest the will of the people if they are openly lying about their proposals and their effects?

          You can keep your plan.
          You can keep our doctor.

          People elected based upon those ideas.

          Those ideas turn out to be outright lies.

          Therefore, will cannot be assumed to be present in voters who voted under fraudulent pretenses.

          I know logic isn’t your strong suit, but read this slowly and carefully, you might just learn something.

    5. So much for your love of democracy.

    6. obfuscation is very much an important part of making policy

      Your problem here is that if obfuscation is very much an important part of the making of your policy, you absolutely and unquestionably deserve to have others make a “concerted effort to collapse your presidency no matter the cost”.

      In the end, the bad faith you face is equal to the bad faith you make.

      1. Republicans spend all their time whining about how their feelings are hurt presumably thinking the rest of us are idiots who will fall for the idea that they’re not going to be extremist obstructionists no matter what Democrats do.

        1. Tony,

          It wasn’t the Republicans that Obama relied upon being stupid. It was you. The Republicans and the people on this board all saw this bill for what it was. Gruber wasn’t’ talking to us. He was talking to people he thought would be stupid enough to believe the lie, like you.

          You do understand that don’t you? If you ever met Gruber, he would immediately see you for the rube you are.

          1. I am not nor have I ever been misled on this law. Meanwhile you’ve had Hannity’s fist up you flapping your head to the hysterical nonsense du jour ever since it came into being. Truly the most fascinating thing about you rightwingers is how you can be thoroughly discredited and then move on like nothing happened.

            1. I am not nor have I ever been misled on this law.

              Yes you were. You have argued on here for years that this law wasn’t going to hurt the middle class and was going to bring down cost and help the uninsured. You believed every talking point Gruber is now admitting was a lie.

              Do you not think people on here read what you post or can’t remember it? You are exactly the person Gruber lied to.

              1. Do you not think people on here read what you post or can’t remember it? You are exactly the person Gruber lied to.

                No he is the exactly the person or type of person that spread Gruber’s lie ad Populum.

              2. No, John. I think what Tony is saying is that he isn’t a useful idiot. He’s a lying sack of shit.

              3. It has “bent the cost curve” and delivered insured more people.

                1. Lie and a Damn Lie. Sorry, we were looking for a trifecta and you didn’t get the God Damn Lie.

                  Better luck next time champ.

            2. Truly, Tony, you never cease to amaze me.

            3. Tony|11.19.14 @ 3:48PM|#
              “I am not nor have I ever been misled on this law.”

              You have two choices from that statement:
              1) You are a fucking liar NOW
              or
              2) You were a fucking liar THEN when you repeated Gruber’s (and Obo’s) lies.
              So which is it, fucking liar?

              1. I think Tony’s pretty adamant that he’s #2.

            4. Irony, it is sooooo delicious.

            5. Tony wrote “I am not nor have I ever been misled on this law.”

              So you were well aware that people who need a prosthetic limb were going to have to pay more for it, in order for you to get subsidized health insurance.

              You selfish, immoral prick.

          2. I think the realization is beginning to dawn on him, but he is still in denial mode.

        2. Extremist obstructionists get to participate in the process, too, Tony.

          When you claim the right to lie because extremist obstructionists get to participate in the process, you don’t get to demand good faith from anyone anymore. In anything.

          1. The people should expect their elected representatives to act like adults. But this is America, and lots of them don’t.

            1. Someone justifying the corruption of the political process by deceiving the public because your side could not get your way otherwise is calling his opponents childish? That’s brazen.

              1. That’s the left in a nutshell.

                Children.

            2. WTF does that mean?

              Extreme obstructionism is a coherent position, Tony.

              You may not like it. You may think it will lead to bad outcomes. But that doesn’t matter.

              The people who think “I don’t want the government to take one single additional step to do one single additional thing, starting from this moment!” are just as entitled to representation as you are.

              “I expect elected representatives to act like adults!”

              That’s what they’re doing, Tony. You just don’t LIKE what they’re doing – so much so that you claim the right to act in bad faith. Well, now that you’ve claimed that right, everyone else possesses it, too.

              1. But…but…but equality isn’t really what he wanted – not unless it’s another word for power.

    7. the law does what it does, and the American people don’t have the first fucking clue what that is.

      Yourself included?

    8. this is not a good policy process.

      Sure it is. As long as there is a concerted effort to collapse your presidency no matter the cost, obfuscation is very much an important part of making policy.

      I’m sure you’ll remember this and be fine with a Republican president and Congress selling shitty laws to the public with abject lies because they’re opposed by the Democrats, right?

      I thought not, you partisan shit.

      1. They are already well practiced at that.

        1. Name them then.

          Start with one that they used to justify taking over 1/9th the economy please.

          1. BTW – for those not Tony, I’m well aware Rs lie. Also well aware that one set of political liars is not an argument which should allow other liars cover for their lies.

            IE – a murderer on trial cannot say, “But look at all those others who got away with it?” and expect it to be held by the jury or judge as a credible defense.

    9. Tony|11.19.14 @ 3:16PM|#
      “But no matter what he or Obama said, the law does what it does, and the American people don’t have the first fucking clue what that is. And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.”

      Speak for yourself, asshole. The “American people” here knew what it does; only ignorant lefty assholes fell for Gruber’s (and Obo’s) lies.

      1. Writing the law as a Britanica-sized stack of legalese didn’t exactly help people know what was in it.

    10. More derp from the derpiest of the derpy:

      “As long as there is a concerted effort to collapse your presidency no matter the cost, obfuscation is very much an important part of making policy.”

      Thats right fuckstick, no one was trying to stop bad policy because it was bad policy, they were trying to collapse his presidency because he is black.

      You are as big a liar as he is. What is it about lefties that makes them all pathological liars? Oh, thats right, you know your ideas are shit and people will reject them if you tell the truth. This is now known as Gruberism, but I have been saying it since I first began posting on here.

      1. He’s not only a liar, he’s a horrible fucking racist too.

      2. I don’t want you to hurt yourself, but I’m going to let you in on a secret: it’s not the left who has been lying to you.

        1. Says the guy giving a proven liar a pass.

    11. And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.

      Sure about that?

    12. obfuscation is very much an important part of making policy

      OK, let me get this straight. You’re a big fan of democracy, because you to protect the democratic process, the will of the people should rule.

      And you also think that obfuscation is an important part of policy, because apparently it is in keeping with the principles of democracy and self-determination that voters be misled about what they are voting for?????

      What. The. Actual. Fuck.

      1. Tony was for democracy before he was against it.

      2. That should have read

        OK, let me get this straight. You’re a big fan of democracy, because, save for limits that protect the democratic process, you think the will of the people should rule.

      3. Two different things. People vote for representatives because they agree with their stated policy goals. Those goals are achieved in myriad ways, sometimes involving getting the screeching political media to look at a shiny object over there for a minute while they make a deal. Sometimes involving trolling your opponents. Sometimes involving making shady backroom deals with the insurance lobby. I didn’t invent politics so don’t blame me.

        1. People vote for representatives because they agree with their stated policy goals.

          And you’re saying it’s totally cool for those representatives to flat out lie about what their policy goals are!

          You think people should vote to elect politicians based on broad policy goals, but you don’t think people will support the right goals, so politicians needs to lie about their policy. And you conflate that with democracy and self-rule!

          1. That guy really is representative of everything that is wrong and evil within the authoritarian camp. People are important, until they get in the way. Despite his ideology being discredited over and over, he just points to others and makes believe they are the problem.

          2. You are absolutely correct when you wrote:

            And you’re saying it’s totally cool for those representatives to flat out lie about what their policy goals are!

            But Tony is being dishonest in that he doesn’t really believe that.

            What he believes are his goals are moral and therefore the ends justify the means.

            IE – what Tony really believes is that it’s OK to lie about Obama Care, lie about IRS attacks, lie about the NSA, etc, etc, because he agrees with the liars’ goals.

            If the liars were his opponents, he’d be calling for new laws such as expanding truth in advertising to politicians.

            And contemplate when he and his comrades say they’re not for prison.

            How big of a step is it really between defrauding 360 million people to jailing dissidents?

  19. And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.

    Sorry pal, you and your ilk lied thru your teeth, and the lies continue.

  20. Has Tony started dropping more f-bombs lately? Stress getting to him?

    1. The thug within strains to come out.

      1. It doesn’t have to struggle, the thug is in control. Hence why he thinks it’s okay to execute his political opponents.

  21. From the rape culture thread, a succinct account why the Master Baiter is a waste of time.

    ?John|11.19.14 @ 10:21AM|#

    Tony’s point is so stupid and simplistic it is actually difficult to respond to. How do you respond to a statement that is that stupid and not germane to the topic?

    1. ” How do you respond to a statement that is that stupid and not germane to the topic?”

      *In the voice of Jackie Gleason*
      The goddamn Germans got nothin to do with it!

  22. “And that’s not because proponents of the law lied to them.”

    Did Obama say the individual mandate was a tax? I thought he denied it was a tax.

    Anyway, just as you said, I had no fucking clue it was a tax. All
    I can recall is some very convincing government person on my television saying it was “not a tax.” He also said I could keep my plan if I liked it.

    1. That motherfucker is talking out of both sides of his mouth every time he opens it.

      1. Tony or Obama?

  23. Tax subsidy? Does Suderman mean to characterize deducting business expenses from gross profits as the same as the government giving money to a business? Does he want to apply that to all expenses or is employee health insurance a special excepton?

    1. It’s a tax subsidy to the employee, because it creates a type of compensation you can receive without paying tax on it.

      SLD about not liking the income tax to begin with – but if there was a law that taxed me differently if my employer gave me $50,000 and a $40,000 car than I would be taxed if my employer gave me $90,000, it’s pretty straightforwardly a “tax subsidy” both to the people who structure their compensation the first way – and, indirectly, to the people who sell cars.

      1. Except the tax break that is being discussed is the employer’s deduction as a business expense not that the benefit could be thought of as untaxed income for the employee.

    2. Suderman should know better to say such shit. Allowing people to keep more of their own lawfully earned income is not a “subsidy” in any sense of the term used outside of the beltway hive Suderman and his wife inhabit.

      Basically, Suderman’s cure for this is to raise everyone’s taxes. No thanks.

      1. Basically, Suderman’s cure for this is to raise everyone’s taxes. No thanks.

        Before you reject Suderman’s prescription consider the alternative, extending the tax break to all forms of health insurance.

        At first this seems like a great idea… but the government has to naturally decide what forms of health insurance qualify for the tax deduction… does it include plans that pay for birth control and abortion? Does it include plans that have high deductibles? Does it include plans that don’t include pregnancy coverage? Or only apply to men (like say an NFL union policy for its players)?

        Extending the tax break necessarily inserts the fed gov into medical insurance regulation in a way that ending it doesn’t.

        1. Of course they could just say “Any plan that was sold as health insurance before Obamacare is the basis for what will be considered for the tax deduction.” And then not get involved at all. Obviously that would never happen.

          1. That wouldn’t work; insurance product offering are constantly being revised.

            Eventually you get the same pervasive state regulation along with the lack of flexibility and monoculture.

  24. Gruber Who?

    The Affordable Care Act gives your administration extensive opportunities to achieve these potential savings. As a consultant to the administration, MIT professor Jonathan Gruber said: “Everything is in here . . . I can’t think of anything I’d do that they are not doing in the bill.” Your administration is working hard to implement these reforms through Secretary Sebelius, Administrator Berwick, and many private sector entities who see and believe in this great opportunity…

    Please prioritize your administration’s efforts on health care delivery system reform as a key solution to our Medicare cost problem.

    Sincerely,

    Senators Sheldon Whitehouse, Mark Begich, Richard Blumenthal, Barbara Boxer, Sherrod Brown, Tom Carper, Kent Conrad, Al Franken, Jeff Merkley, Barbara Mikulski, Mark Udall, and Mark Warner.

  25. Gruber’s Obamacare payday highlights ulterior motives behind ‘do something’ cry
    …Gruber, then, had to mislead Americans (or maybe just their senators) in order to pass Obamacare, and that opened a gusher of lucrative contracts for him. There is no doubt that Gruber sincerely thought the country needed health-care reform. But still, his financial interest in the bill ought to have raised some skepticism about the numbers he was peddling….

  26. Whenever I hear about J. Gruber, I think of Crewman Gruber from McHale’s Navy: a hustler and hack magician whose get-rich-quick schemes (such as promoting gambling, selling moonshine and war souvenirs) often get the crew in trouble (that is when the crew isn’t stealing supplies or equipment).

    1. I’m at work. Can someone respond to this with the Ernest Borgnine video where he explains his key to a long life?

      1. This one?

        I’m at work, too, but the Google machine still loads YouTube links. 😛

  27. This law is a modest attempt to begin the process of doing what everybody who’s not a retard knows we need to do as a civilized country. Its actual intent is to help people.

    Oh.

    Okay, then.

    1. Well, if the intent is to help, carry on.

      1. And modest.

        Controlling healthcare in the most advanced healthcare system the world has ever known, for 360 million people is modest.

        Closing Gitmo? Stopping NSA spying? Stopping the DOJ from prosecuting federally legal users of marijuana?

        All complex and beyond the great one’s control.

        President Obama – the Nobel Prize winner running The Most Transparent Government ever, with his own kill list.

        Ain’t life grand ?

  28. Does the leadership of the Democratic Policy & Communications Center know who Gruber is?

    MIT Economist Jonathan Gruber: “This Is What We Want In A Fair Society”:

    “This is what we want in a fair society,” says Jonathan Gruber, the MIT economist and Obamacare architect. “We don’t want to enslave the old and sick to their jobs out of some sense of meanness. If they are dying to quit/retire, then let’s them. That’s a good thing, not a bad thing.” [TNR, 2/4/14]

    Do they?

    LEADING ECONOMIST AGREES: THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT IS TO THANK FOR UNINSURED RATE DECREASE

    MIT Economist Jonathan Gruber: “I Think It Is Impossible to Look at This and Conclude that the Uninsured Rate Isn’t Declining in the U.S.” “The evidence is mounting,” says Jonathan Gruber, economist at MIT and one of the health law’s architects. “What is nice about these results is that the Gallup poll is somewhat noisy, but this large and consistent decline is beyond any of the noise shown in earlier years. I think it is impossible to look at this and conclude that the uninsured rate isn’t declining in the U.S. It’s hard to say by how much, but the direction is clear.” [The New Republic, 5/5/14]

  29. Suderman, are you married to Tony?

    GruberGate’s Insider Problem
    …I could try to convince conservatives that the problem is not actually with Gruber, who’s basically a smart and, yes, well-meaning guy, for all that we vehemently disagree. The problem is not even really with the Barack Obama administration. The problem is with the system and the way that elites in that system treat others. I could tell them that “conspiracy” is far too strong a word for something that both sides do every time they get the chance. I could also remind them that, no matter Gruber’s offenses, he remains a human being, and publishing his phone number and address in order to facilitate harassment is inappropriate, as is the harassment. The problem with Twitter mobs is not that too few of them are conservative-driven….

    1. McCardle is the worst apologist and jock strap sniffer for the elite. She cannot admit that anyone who went to the right schools and is one of her class could ever be anything but well meaning. McCardle has always been a true member of the cult of the expert. It is her downfall as a thinker. She can occasionally be really good. But her elitism inevitably causes her to write shit like this. She just can’t help herself.

      could also remind them that, no matter Gruber’s offenses, he remains a human being, and publishing his phone number and address in order to facilitate harassment is inappropriate, as is the harassment.

      The guy lies to the country and admits to writing a bill that was designed to screw pretty much anyone with a job and people saying mean things to him on Twiiter is just too much for Mrs. Suderman’s delicate little feelings.

      Gruber is a scumbag who deserves everything that is happening to him. The fact that he is first in a long list of scumbags who will hopefully get what they deserve as well, doesn’t mean he should get off now.

        1. You said it Johnny. And McCardle to my knowledge never wrote a single fucking word about that. But some people said mean things about another precious little Ivy leaguer and Megan is really upset. I really can’t stand her sometimes.

          1. Those ignorant Wisconsin tea baggers got uppity and deserved everything they got. Imagine, trying to impact public policy w/o the right piece of paper hanging on their walls.

          2. McArdle strikes me as a useful idiot more than an intentionally dishonest commentator. Sort of precisely the sort bringing on Gruber was supposed to dupe. McArdle should have been smart enough to see through the bullshit the administration was pushing. And I suspect, without Gruber, she would have. The thing is, she can’t get past the pedigree. The Top Men told her that the giant turd on her plate was a serving of caviar. And while she couldn’t bring herself to sing its praises, she sure enough choked it down. She couldn’t accept that her own senses or her own mind ought to take precedence over what she’s being told. And now that Gruber’s been revealed to be nothing more than a charlatan, McArdle has to make excuses. To do otherwise would entail acknowledging to herself that rather than being part of the circle of Top Men, she’s one of the stupid people Gruber was talking about pulling one over on.

    2. The ancient shamans who drilled holes in peple’s heads to release the evil spirits as a cure for headaches meant well too.

      1. But that often worked. As a boy, years ago, I read an article about some dude who had a small hole drilled into his cranium for some reason or another. It gave him a permanent high. Back in the 60s or 70s in a newstand rag.

  30. 40 motherfucking percent increase in monthly premiums.

    40. Motherfucking. Percent.

    I hope Tony and all the fucking proglodyte assholes that his sock embodies choke on Pelosi’s diseased clit.

    1. But Tony assures us this bill wasn’t designed to do that. Jonathan Gruber told him this wasn’t going to increase people’s insurance rates or cause people who have good coverage to lose it.

      Why can’t you ignorant racists believe that like Tony does?

      1. Tony didn’t know or care if what Gruber was saying was true. He had his talking points and his marching orders and that was enough.

      2. I’m just not as good a person as Tony is. It is my cross to bear.

  31. Holy shit, Tony is in self denial. His excuse is that because Republicans lie, him and his ilk were forced to deceive the American people. That’s pretty outrageous and ridiculous. If he had any integrity, he would beat his party over the head for being so deceitful and raising the cost of insurance and health care on average Americans.

    1. Tony usually falls back on “It’s okay for Dems to do it because the GOP did it”, or as others like to put it “…but, BUUUUUUUSH!” His last ditch effort when losing an argument is to attack someone that his opponent also hates. It’s bizarre.

    2. In their minds they are nobly sacrificing their integrity in order to save the people from themselves.

    3. I don’t think anyone was deceived except by Republicans with their incessant cut-rate propaganda about death panels and such.

      1. Except you were here every fucking day singing it’s praises and you still can’t take Obama’s cock out of your mouth long enough to acknowledge that what they did was wrong.

        So either you were lying then, knowing this was a massive turd and singing it’s praises anyways. Or you are just too stupid now to realize that you’ve been used to cover a massive fucking gimme to the insurance companies.

        Oh what the hell, you can be both stupid AND a liar.

      2. Tony|11.19.14 @ 5:27PM|#
        “I don’t think anyone was deceived except by Republicans with their incessant cut-rate propaganda about death panels and such.”

        Funny, you were here repeating those lies every chance you got.
        So were you lying then or are you lying now?

      3. Just. Keep. Lying.

  32. With or without Obamacare the USA has the most expensive healthcare system in the world. What is all the fuss about?

  33. This gives me hope that the employer mandate will never actually go into effect.

    If you’re going to have a cadillac tax to get rid of the tax deduction, there’s no reason to have a mandate to force employers to buy health insurance anyway.

  34. Would anyone care to speculate on the quality of the software built with Gruber writing the requirements? Can we say healthcare.gov?

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