Thursday, November 13, 2014

"extraordinarily transparent"

The White House Press Secretary, Josh Ernest, wins the 2014 award for Orwellian rhetoric for calling President Obama's lie "extraordinarily transparent." He was responding to questions about Gruber's actual transparency regarding Obamacare, which the administration is trying to obscure in pursuit of "extraordinary transparency."

President Obama, of course, won the 2013 Orwellian rhetoric prize with his lie of the year: If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep your healthcare plan.

Lie of the Year: 'If you like your health care plan, you can keep it'

 Here's a transcript provided by the White House:

Q While you've been here, the President has been here, there's videotape from Jonathan Gruber, who was one of the architects when the law came out. Among the things he said was that the bill was originally written in a "very tortured way," in his words, to kind of mislead people about the taxes in the law and other parts of the law.He went on to say, "A lack of transparency was a huge political advantage for the President…" in terms of selling it to the American people.
I thought it was just the opposite. Didn't the President promise unprecedented transparency?Why would one of the architects of the law suggest that you were misleading people?
MR. EARNEST:Well, I'm not sure, frankly, Ed.The fact of the matter is the process associated with writing and passing and implementing the Affordable Care Act has been extraordinarily transparent. We all sat through many town hall meetings and discussions where this piece of legislation was vigorously debated by people on both sides.There was even a meeting that the President convened at Blair House with Republicans to discuss this policy proposal.It was, as you know, broadcast by C-SPAN.
There was a steadfast commitment by this administration to make sure that people had good insight into the benefits of the law.... And again, I think the President is proud of the transparent process that was undertaken to pass that bill into law.

Need I point out that none of the mainstream media have covered Gruber's comments? It's a total news blackout.
There are other winners as well. Here's Pelosi for starters:

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, said Thursday that Mr. Gruber’s comments were a year old and he’s backtracked from most of them.
“I don’t who he is, he didn’t help write our bill,” she said.
ExceptMassachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Jonathan Gruber was, by most accounts, one of the key figures in constructing the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare. He helped designed the Massachusetts health care law on which it was modeled, assisted the White House in laying out the foundation of the law, and, accordingto The New York Times, was eventually sent to Capitol Hill "to help Congressional staff members draft the specifics of the legislation." He provided the media with a stream of supportive quotes, and was paid almost $400,000 for his consulting work. 

____________________________________________________________________________ As another blogger put it:

Responding to damning comments from key Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber that the passage of the ACA  was predicated on avoiding transparency and exploiting “stupid voters,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said thisduring a press briefing in Burma:

“The fact of the matter is, the process associated with the writing and passing and implementing of the Affordable Care Act has been extraordinarily transparent.”

Except, of course, for the President and other elected officials repeatedly saying that “if you like your plan, you can keep your plan—period.”
Oh…and that it was drafted in secrecy by lobbyists from the health care industry and Congressional aides and voted on before anyone in Congress had an opportunity to read it in its final form.
Then there was the fact that the usual procedure of vetting the bill through committees in the House and Senate was bypassed, and floor debate was curtailed.
Of course, the bill was so long and written in such impenetrable jargon and had so many cross-references that it was unreadable. This is what Nancy Pelosi explained that we had to pass it to find out what was in it.
Other than that, though…wait!
There was the little device of swearing that the individual mandate was not a tax until the bill was passed, then arguing before the Supreme Court that it was in fact a tax, as the bill’s architects intended from the start.
Extraordinarily transparent.

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