Patterico's Pontifications


ObamaCare: “We hope you guys know what you’re doing.”

Filed under: General — Karl @ 4:14 pm

[Posted by Karl]

From Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals:

RULE 1: “Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.” Power is derived from 2 main sources – money and people. “Have-Nots” must build power from flesh and blood. (These are two things of which there is a plentiful supply. Government and corporations always have a difficult time appealing to people, and usually do so almost exclusively with economic arguments.)


RULE 9: “The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.” Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist. (Perception is reality. Large organizations always prepare a worst-case scenario, something that may be furthest from the activists’ minds. The upshot is that the organization will expend enormous time and energy, creating in its own collective mind the direst of conclusions. The possibilities can easily poison the mind and result in demoralization.)

Given that the current phase of the Democrats’ attempt to take over the US healthcare system is mostly behind closed doors, most of what we hear is going to be gossip and propaganda — statements and leaks designed to manipulate other politicians and the public.

For example, on the so-called “public option,” we have been fed news stories about how the House Dems have the votes for a “robust” government-run insurance plan, only to find out that they did not, that the Dems being whipped may not have known what the “robust public option” is, that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi then did a public whipping to shame Dems into supporting her — and that the count leaves some 50 to 60 Dems in the air (though the number could also be as low as seven or eight).

On the Senate side, we have been fed stories about Sen. Maj. Ldr. Harry Reid warming to the idea of putting the “public option” into the merged bill going to the floor, with a state opt-out — with 57 or 58 Senators supporting it. But most accounts also have Sen. Max Baucus moving into action, and complaints from Sens. Ben Nelson, Olympia Snowe, Mary Landrieu and perhaps Evan Bayh following.

And though we have been fed stories about Obama quietly trying to shore up the public option, that does not seem to be the case, either:

On Thursday night, Reid went over to the White House for a talk with the president. The conversation centered on Reid’s desire to put Schumer’s national opt-out plan into the base bill. White House officials were not necessarily pleased, and they made that known. Everyone agrees that they didn’t embrace Reid’s new strategy. Everyone agrees that the White House wants Snowe on the bill, feels the trigger offers a safer endgame, and isn’t convinced by Reid’s math. But whether officials expressed a clear preference for the trigger, or were just worried about the potential for 60 votes, is less clear. One staffer briefed on the conversation says “the White House basically told us, ‘We hope you guys know what you’re doing.’”

If Reid’s debacle on the “doc fix” this week is any indicator, that is some audacious hope at 1600 Penn. More broadly, the White House, especially Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, have been for the “public option with trigger” for months — which is why the usual lefty suspects are protesting now, and why the story about Obama warming to the public option should have been flagged as “fishy.”

After all of the sturm and drang, it still seems quite possible that the soap opera is a Narrative in which Reid works so hard to get the public option into the bill, but is thwarted by the eeevil Rahmbo — as opposed to revealing a “silent filibuster” of ObamaCare. In the meantime, the Dems hope that a Narrative of momentum will demoralize ObamaCare’s opponents, and become a self-fulfilling prophecy.


13 Responses to “ObamaCare: “We hope you guys know what you’re doing.””

  1. the public whipping link is off I think

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  2. feets!

    The links that go to the HotAir version of this post substitute for links to the Politico, to honor Pat’s boycott. The HA version has the Politico links.

    Karl (246941)

  3. I’m going through a lot of popcorn watching the Democrats screw up health care reform and Obama screw up his Presidency. Republicans now are ahead of Democrats on all ten indicators that Rasmussen tracks. The shine has worn of Obama and people see him as an unqualified, classless, Chicago street thug instead of a uniter, which is nice.

    Democrats never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  4. oh. I’d forgotten all about that.

    happyfeet (f62c43)

  5. I think this whole War Against Fox is a calculated distraction to keep attention off of this travesty.

    JD (f0742b)

  6. JD is right. The Obamabots are desperate, and are forced to delegitimizing any opposition. Fortunately, with The Messiah’s plummeting popularity, it’s not taking.

    Kudos to Jake Tapper, and to the MSM networks, for opposing the attempt to isolate Fox News.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (a0996d)

  7. Jake Tapper is one of a handful of journalists that I actually respect, even when I do not agree with him.

    JD (f0742b)

  8. The depressing thing is three more years of this. I’m reading Hayward’s “Age of Reagan” and it is really dispiriting to see how much this president is weak and consumed with political minutia.

    Mike K (addb13)

  9. Every member of the House is less than 54 weeks away from an election. If the democrats manage to pass this pig of a healthcare bill with any public option, trigger or Coop, they will be in for a very unhappy Christmas recess.

    Taxes will start in 2010 with zero benefits until 2013! Explain that to the electorate. This bill is like a balloon mortgage that comes due on the next guys watch.

    Why is it a good idea to bleed capital out of the economy in a recession and unemployment rising through 10%? Just announce that 10% unemployment is the new normal. I’m sure that the 6 million people out of work will understand.

    Tell seniors that the bill will cut $500B out of Medicare. Anyone think they will mind?

    Wait until the 20 somethings find out that they are going to be forced to buy insurance of be fined and go to jail. So much for the youth vote.

    Perhaps the democrats will spin it as a good thing. Hey, don’t worry. I know you’ll have to pay more for Obamacare, but look at the bright side – cap & trade will double your energy bill!

    The policies being pushed by Congress and the Obama administration are political suicide.

    Arch (08fde5)

  10. I don’t think that the War on Fox is meant to distract from this in general. I think Obama and his agenda have now reached the point where they are losing support on the Left. I think they realize they still need to deal with the centrists to get any of it accomplished, and hope that things like the War on Fox will help keep the Left happy while they cut necessary deals.

    Karl (246941)

  11. The War on FOX NEWS is designed to protect ACORN and SEIU from exposure in big city newspapers and on network TV. Democrats can’t win elections without ACORN’s voter registration drives, get-out-the-vote campaigns, and ballot box stuffing skills. SEIU provides union foot solders and the New Black Panthers lurk around the polls to intimidate GOP voters on election days.

    Major Democrat victories are virtually impossible without the thugs and cheats on the ground, along with cover from MSM, and protection from DOJ.

    ACORN, SEIU, and NBBP are the pillars upon which the Democrats have built their ground game. If FOX NEWS revelations are picked-up and run on MSM outlets, the Dems can fold their tents and go home. They know it, and will do anything to keep the voting public from knowing it too.

    ropelight (91c668)

  12. “I don’t think that the War on Fox is meant to distract from this in general. I think Obama and his agenda have now reached the point where they are losing support on the Left.”

    Karl – You might be right. Just look at the comments of an extreme partisan such as Myron. He has been blinded by the need for health care reform with a public option as the only solution. He refused to discuss or listen to the consequences of including a public option in a bill on the cost of health insurance to consumers. He has only been focused on the delivery vehicle, not the mechanics. Now with the costs and its implications becoming more clear to even hyperpartisans, interest groups such as unions come out against versions of bills, doctors against others, Myron has been noticably silent in the face of things that have been pointed out to him all along. Conservatives have not been lying about the impact of the Democrat proposals or lobbying for the status quo, they would actually prefer reforms that have a chance of reducing costs and meeting Obama’s goals, which the current bills do not.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  13. […] Pelosi & Co. claimed they had the votes as far back as July, and we will be hearing a lot of Democratic gossip and propaganda about momentum while ObamaCare is cooked up in back […]

    The Greenroom » Forum Archive » ObamaCare: The weekend ICYMI (e2f069)

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