We are letting him get away with it. No action by the federal government in our lifetime, maybe ever, caused as much instant disruption, expense, uncertainty, fear, and threat to real health—while demonstrating astonishing incompetence and lack of planning—as the advent of the "Affordable Care Act."
The law was sold on a foundation and core of direct, deliberate lie. Its architects intended to sever people from their plans and doctors; they intended to make most pay more so a few could pay less; they designed a system to herd masses toward the exchanges and Medicaid. Every serious person knows it. Now, instead of saving average families $2,500, it’s costing virtually all insured Americans much more. Many Americans are left struggling to replace their coverage.
Having sawed off the branch of the coverage of millions, it’s not clear whether the law actually positioned a net to catch their fall. Problems accessing healthcare.gov are a tired joke by now. Less reported is that many who think they signed up, might as well have played a video game, having committed their clicks, selections, identities, and personal information to a façade without a back-end, landing in a dangerously hackable pile of inconsequence.
Meanwhile, the accounts are piling up of seriously ill Americans who had good coverage and good treatment who have lost it. Many literally fear for their lives. The president doesn’t deign to comment on their plight while his bagman in the Senate implies they’re liars. Operatives scramble to silence their accounts.
No one knows where this is going; what will happen. This year many millions more will be swept from employer based plans and find themselves in the same capsizing boat. Scratch that—not quite this year. The president dispensed with three branches as he sponsored, passed and signed an amendment to the law, to kick the employer devastation past the next election for some employers if they take a vow of loyal silence against blaming Obamacare for their employment decisions.
That was the latest in a train of abuses. The president has selectively delayed, distorted, or ignored so much of the law he rammed through by sham procedures and a party line vote that it’s impossible to say whether or how the remaining pieces fit together. The only thing that’s sure is that anything that threatens the president’s party with political damage will by misrepresented, covered up, or kicked down the road.
What has happened to the American spirit of independence and vigilance of government? This administration deliberately disrupted American life like nothing since WWII. When Congress passed a pharmaceutical plan for seniors in 1988 that made many pay more, they rose in anger and mobbed a fleeing Dan Rostenkowski. Congress quickly repealed its mistake. When LBJ bungled he Vietnam War, his own party rose up and served eviction notice on one of the most transformative presidents in history.
Yet today, we sleepwalk through an earthquake, discussing pros and cons, listening to straight face defenses of the president’s initiative, watching post-modern hacks for total government argue to redefine “keep your plan” “keep your doctor” and “cancelled plan.” By the account of these zombies, the president and his backers told the truth and now it’s his critics who are lying. Anger at what he’s done to our nation is unenlightened, uncivil, and racist, they intone.
Rubbish, I say. If anything the response has been too docile, too deferential to lies and the defenders of lies. He goes about his methodical agenda transforming America by executive order, and barely reported Department programs, unleashing his enforcers on anyone whose criticism rises to the national radar, while we’re left picking up the pieces of what he’s done to jobs, growth, opportunity, and now our individual physical safety nets. We’re too scared and shell shocked to rise up and chase his limousine like the spirited seniors just 25 years ago.
America is softening and stumbling. It should be difficult for the Chief Executive and Chief Architect of this chaos to find an audience anywhere that doesn’t shout, challenge, question, and resist his overreach. But we’re either too stunned to move, too afraid of the names his guard dogs would call us, or maybe we fear a knock on the door from federal regulators.
May Providence breathe new life into the people of America. If not, Obama gets his transformation.