Obama kinda-sorta apologizes for those millions of lost insurance plans
Barack Obama, Take 1: The millions of people losing their insurance coverage due to the Affordable Care Act don’t exist.
Barack Obama, Take 2: Sure, lots of people are losing coverage due to my health-care “reform,” but it’s all for the best, because their plans were lousy anyway. If your coverage is getting canceled now, you were buying it from a two-bit fly-by-night scam artist. Forget everything I ever said about “keeping your plan if you like it, period!” because if you’d simply read the thousands of pages of ACA legislation, you would have understood what I really meant.
Barack Obama, Take 3: “I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me.”
That’s from a new interview with Chuck Todd of NBC News, and the fact that this supremely arrogant, egotistical President was willing to get anywhere near the words “I’m sorry” is a matter of historic significance.
But before you get too excited, this isn’t some sort of full-on act of honor and contrition from President Obama. It’s actually just a minor modulation of the lies he’s been telling all along. He’s still clinging to the nonsense he was shoveling in Take 1 and Take 2. He’s basically just throwing a few crumbs to the people who still feel sore after being told they’re a tiny, meaningless minority – acceptable collateral damage for the Great Healthcare Leap Forward – and who know their plans most certainly were not garbage. Many of those plans were far better than the more expensive ObamaCare coverage replacing them.
In fact, the full text of Obama’s tortured, rambling answer makes it clear he’s basically saying he’s sorry you misunderstood what he was really saying when he lied to your face dozens of times and promised you’d be able to keep your plan. It’s basically your fault for being so poorly informed about the megaton legislative bomb he was about to drop on you. Also, he didn’t really understand the Affordable Care Act either, and he regrets that it didn’t work out the way he wanted it to… but you’re stuck with it forever.
You know – I regret very much that – what we intended to do, which is to make sure that everybody is moving into better plans because they want them, as opposed to because they’re forced into it. That, you know, we weren’t as clear as we needed to be, in terms of the changes that were taking place. And I want to do everything we can to make sure that people are finding themselves in a good position, a better position than they were before this law happened.
Keep in mind that most of the folks who are got these cancellation letters, they’ll be able to get better care at the same cost or cheaper in these new marketplaces. Because they’ll have more choice. They’ll have more competition. They’re part of a bigger pool. Insurance companies are going to be hungry for their business.
So, the majority of folks will end up being better off, of course, because the website’s not working right. They don’t necessarily know it right. Even though it’s a small percentage of folks who may be disadvantaged, you know, it means a lot to them. And it’s scary to them. And I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation, based on assurances they got from me. We’ve got to work hard to make sure that they know we hear ‘em and that we’re going to do everything we can, to deal with folks who find themselves in a tough position as a consequence of this.
What a load of hogswallop. He’s still lying through his teeth – he knows damned well that victims of his policy are not “able to get better care at the same cost or cheaper in these new marketplaces.” He doesn’t need his gigantic team of overpriced policy experts to tell him that; the airwaves are bursting with stories of people losing coverage, losing access to doctors, and simultaneously getting saddled with higher premiums and deductibles. This is the man who claims he learns everything about his own government – from NSA spying to IRS abuse of power – by watching the news. You can’t flip on the news without hearing a new tale of tragedy from an ObamaCare victim.
He’s right about the “hunger” of insurance companies for business, but they were plenty hungry before; now they’re just hoping they can fleece enough young and healthy suckers to offset the loss for covering older clients and people with pre-existing conditions. There are people who will pay less under ObamaCare, but “competition” has nothing to do with it – that’s just another desperate bid by a dishonest socialist to cover up the reality of wealth re-distribution using the language of capitalism and choice. The people who pay less are going to do so because of taxpayer subsidies.
Obama’s “apology” comes as part of a feeble gambit to shore up his flagging personal approval numbers. He will shed a tear for the eggs he breaks to make his statist omelette. He feels your pain! Please forget he’s the one who inflicted it.
Note that NBC’s Chuck Todd is still eager to take the lickspittle position – he set up Obama’s kinda-sorta apology with, “Do you feel like you owe these folks an apology for misleading them? Even if you didn’t intentionally do it, but at this point, they feel misled. And you’ve seen the anger that’s out there.”
People don’t “feel misled,” Mr. Todd. They were lied to. Barack Obama knowingly, willfully, repeatedly lied to them. He lied, and lied, and lied, over and over again, in interview after interview, press conference after press conference. There is nothing “misleading” about what he said, and it wasn’t a series of “mis-statements.” It was a lie, told by someone who knew it wasn’t true, for the express purpose of defrauding the electorate. He knew he wouldn’t get elected or re-elected if he told the truth, so he lied. When he got caught lying, he lied about having told lies. The people who now realize they were lied to are dealing with objective reality, not responding to a funny feeling in the pit of their stomachs. Got it?
Let me help you some more, Mr. Todd. The following Obama statement is an absolute, 100 percent lie. There is nothing ambiguous or “misleading” about it. It is completely false: “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away, no matter what.” Note the use of the phrases “period” and “no matter what” to emphasize absolute certainty. The speaker wishes his audience to believe something, without question, that he knows to be untrue.
Here’s another such Obama statement, Mr. Todd: “If you like your current insurance, you keep that insurance. Period. End of story.” Note here the use of the phrase “end of story” to indicate that the President’s promise is an absolute guarantee, without exception. That is not “misleading,” and its falsehood does not depend on the “feelings” of the listener.
Perhaps Chuck Todd doesn’t read all that much, since he works in video news. Here is a video compilation of Barack Obama repeatedly making absolute and unambiguous statements he knew to be untrue:
And here is another video deconstructing many other deliberate, false statements Barack Obama has made about his health care scheme:
There is absolutely no reason why any “objective reporter” should give Barack Obama the smallest bit of rhetorical assistance at spinning his way out of this. Of course he’s not going to admit he’s a liar, or offer a full and honorable apology to the people he deceived. Of course he’s not going to admit that his plan was a total fraud. But you don’t have to help him dissemble or distract from the issue. Just point the camera at him and let him keep lying, then debunk him with the facts. That’s your job.
I doubt Obama’s image is going to be much improved in the minds of anyone who watches the full NBC News interview. Maybe we’ll see attempts to clip out the one sentence that sounds like an apology, plus a bit of the “feel your pain” stuff, to make him look contrite and sympathetic. But not only does the full text of his comments reveal that he’s not really “apologizing,” he’s doubling down on his spin. He’s still trying to wave off the millions who are losing their insurance plans as a trivial minority – he takes pains at several points to emphasize how small a percentage of the population he thinks they are. He even made another attempt to foist some blame on Mitt Romney: “We tried to find a proven model. We’ve seen it work in Massachusetts.”
He’s still treating the Healthcare.gov disaster as an unexpected catastrophe, without admitting that his Administration knew it would blow up when they launched it, but pressed ahead anyway.
He still claims to be a bystander who is “deeply frustrated” by the shenanigans at the rogue agency known as the Department of Health and Human Services. Asked if he was still confident that Healthcare.gov would be fixed by the end of November, the Empty Chair stammered:
Now that – you know, having said that – given that I’ve been burned already with – a website – well, more importantly, the American people have been burned by – a website that has been dysfunctional. What we’ve also been doing is creating a whole other set of tracks. Making sure that people can apply by phone effectively. Making sure that people can apply in person effectively. So what I’m confident about is that anybody who wants to buy health insurance through the marketplace, they are going to be able to buy it…
Given that you’ve been burned with the website? You dumped it on us, Mr. President. It’s your project. You are fully responsible for it.
I guess the days of Obama comparing himself to an Apple executive going through a rocky product rollout are over, huh? Does anyone remember an Apple exec complaining about how he got “burned” with a faulty iPhone design?
The White House had better hope very few Americans listen to the entirety of Obama’s comments in this interview. Not only would public outrage against this irresponsible man grow, but it might cause a panic. There really is nobody in charge, nobody at all… and the worst is yet to come.
Update: Avik Roy at Forbes fact-checks Obama’s NBC News interview to smithereens, noting that if Obama really wanted to keep the promise he made so many times over the years, he’d support Senator Ron Johnson’s (R-WI) “If You Like Your Health Care Plan You Can Keep It Act,” but he shows no sign of doing so. I would add that Obama could also instruct the Department of Health and Human Services to loosen up the brutally tight restrictions on “grandfathered” insurance policies, but he won’t do that either. Instead, he’s talking about an “administrative fix” to give more people subsidies – i.e. more wealth redistribution, more taxes and/or deficit spending.
This reinforces the point many critics of ObamaCare have been making: Obama wants all these insurance policies to die. It’s a feature, not a bug.