It’s Been Awhile

So it’s been awhile since I came out here to your favorite place on the worldwide web to discuss the scourge of Obamacare, but I feel it’s important to document a few observations which I haven’t seen others make.

 

First of all, let’s refresh our RAM on a few background points.

 

On October 1st, 2013, the government went into shutdown mode.  The two political parties running the show between both houses of Congress and the White House couldn’t come to a resolution over a budget impasse.  Since there’s no active budget, er…….continuing resolution to pay the bills, all government activity was ordered to cease and desist.

 

Did I say all government activity?  I meant a small percentage of it.

 

The shutdown wasn’t the only thing that happened on October 1st though.  On that same day, Obamacare went live in the form of Healthcare.gov.

 

fb shutdown post

 

Now it goes without saying that one of the events that day was the result of the other.  Every since Obamacare was passed, its legitimate opponents have fought it tooth and nail.  In a 2010 special election to replace the recently deceased Ted Kennedy, Scott Brown campaigned successfully for the vacant seat with the promise that we would vote against Obamacare.

 

Later that year, the mid-term elections turned over control of the US House and plenty of state legislatures and governorships.  The success of that year’s election was also attributed to the fact that the electorate was not interested in Obamacare.

 

Two years later, the fight over the entire matter made its way to the Supreme Court.  The opposition argument was that the government does not have the right to force the American people to participate in a market.  The Supreme Court held the same view, however they deemed the fines attached to the Obamacare individual mandate to fall under Congress’ ability to levy a tax on anything it damn well wants to.  Ironically enough, the law’s proponents said over and over again in the lead up to the passage of Obamacare that it was not a tax.  They pretty much changed their tune when the Roberts ruling came out declaring it to be a tax.

 

The last hope against Obamacare came with the 2012 election.  As polarized as today’s political landscape is, a couple of savants within one of the campaigns figured out that there were just a few districts in the swing states which really needed to be worked in order to win the race.  The savants were right.

 

Just when all hope was gone, one more idea came up.  The idea to defund Obamacare had been batted back and forth for years.  Yet still, the effort wasn’t put into motion until the eleventh hour.  At the end of this last September, the House passed a continuing resolution which funded all of government with the exception of Obamacare.  That bad boy was left out.  Political wrangling ensued, the government shut down, and here we are.

 

So here are my observations.  Granted, they come from my own point of view and my feelings about Obamacare.  If I didn’t feel they had some teeth, I wouldn’t have published them.

 

Generally speaking, people don’t appear to be signing up for Obamacare in the droves which had been hoped for.  Let’s talk about a couple of possibilities of why the sign ups aren’t happening:

 

The website sucks.  On the day the site launched, members of the media from both sides of the debate tried to broadcast an enrollment on live air.  They ultimately gave up after encountering several errors.  One can only guess that the site will eventually get fixed.  The best quote I’ve seen about it harkened back to ‘Breaking Bad’.  It went along the lines of “…..fixing Healthcare.gov is like giving Walter White some cough syrup in hopes that the cough would go away…”  Walter White had lung cancer.  Big picture, the administration has had several years to build this site.  The fact that it has the glitches it does really makes one wonder if the government can run health care on the scale it endeavors.

 

The people don’t need it.  One of the very early arguments against Obamacare when it was working its way through Congress was that the government was trying to light a birthday candle with a blow torch.  The number of Americans in need of health insurance was (and is) a small percentage of the whole.  An analysis or two was run back then which determined that an effort to cover those needing insurance would cost the government significantly less than the hefty price tag attached to Obamacare.

 

The people don’t want it.  The absence of two specific narratives in the media confirms this for me.

 

Narrative #1 – All of the rallies and protests over the shutdown today revolve around the shutdown, and to a smaller extent, Obamacare.  We’ve seen the anti-Obamacare rallies, but we haven’t seen the pro-Obamacare rallies.  We haven’t seen protesters holding signs demanding that Healthcare.gov get fixed so that enrollment can be put into high gear.

 

Narrative #2 – The Administration hasn’t told us how many people have signed up.  Why are they keeping that a secret?  Is it possible that the numbers are so low that they don’t want to lend fuel to the fire of their opponents?  Don’t you think that if the numbers were high, that the President himself would use that little tidbit as ammunition on the bully pulpit to force the GOP to give up their fight?  Of course he would.

 

So there you go.

 

Three reasons which help to explain why the GOP is still in the fight and not getting their asses handed to them.

 

Am I off base?  Comment down below and tell me how.

 

 

Randy Tharp

TharpSter is a husband to one woman, a father to two kids, a master to two dogs, an occasional cubical occupant, and unable to make up his mind on an adequate theme for this website.

Type something witty and eye catching right here: