Bill Murchison

President Obama, Oct. 21, addressing Obamacare's website failures:

But I ask: Isn't that how we got to this point of a nation and its government immobilized over a program opposed by -- according to CNN's Oct. 20 poll -- 53 percent of Americans?

It brings to mind then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi's famed argument for whipping Obamacare through the House with zero Republican backing.

All together now: "We have to pass the bill so you can find out what's in it!"

What is it with these people who can't quite bring Obamacare to the point that it works with the joy and efficiency imputed to it through years of supposed preparation? Why, at this point, all the technological foul-ups, the confusion galore as different systems attempt conversation, the surprises galore as would-be enrollees find their expected costs far higher than expected?

"We did not wage this long and contentious battle just around a Website," the President said Monday in the Rose Garden. "That's not what this was about."

In a real sense, though, it was. The Website -- which outside experts call badly planned and executed -- was to symbolize the expertise of the federal government in sorting out the most complex of public problems: that of finding the right health care and paying for it.

Liberals like Obama tend to assume the government's expertise in all matters. They view the government as entirely unlike that supposed hit-and-miss enterprise, the marketplace, where supposedly the rich get what they want, then celebrate by splashing mud on homeless pencil salesmen. Liberal theory holds that "experts" in the employ of government can oversee and anticipate everything needed by everybody. The government is never wrong; the government never misjudges, never makes mistakes.

Not ordinary mistakes, that is. The government's sheer size and power render its mistakes colossal. As with Obamacare, from at least some of whose perplexities congressional Republicans might have delivered the White House, but for the White House's scandalized reaction to the idea that anything could be wrong with this prize orchid. "Anything"? What if it's more like everything?

Bill Murchison

Bill Murchison is the former senior columns writer for The Dallas Morning News and author of There's More to Life Than Politics.
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