Thursday, March 24, 2011

Happy Anniversary, ACA

Yesterday was the one-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act, known to the middle-school clique on Fox and Capitol Hill as “Obamacare (neener-neener).” They celebrated by lying their asses off about about it. Steve Benen sums it up:

Perhaps the most exasperating aspect of health care debate was the incessant lying. An aggressive rhetoric fight over ideological goals makes sense, and plenty of overheated predictions are to be expected, but claims made by opponents of reform turned out to be so soul-crushingly false, it was genuinely depressing.

At one point, during the House debate, Ruth Marcus marveled at the “appalling amount of misinformation being peddled” by Republicans. “I don’t mean the usual hyperbole…. I mean the flood of sheer factual misstatements,” she said at the time. “You have to wonder: Are the Republican arguments against the bill so weak that they have to resort to these misrepresentations and distortions?”


A year later, Republicans are still trying to kill the policy — and they’re still lying. We’re not talking about exaggerations; we’re talking about demonstrable errors of fact.

And with all their fabrications, obfuscations, and falsehoods, they have yet to offer anything other than “repeal.” For a while they were doing the “repeal and replace” bit until they realized that they hadn’t come up with anything to replace it with. That’s because they don’t want to replace it; they want to go back to the old way of having our healthcare system in the hands of corporations and run it as a for-profit enterprise. After all, it worked for Rick Scott, and look where that got him.

What’s going to be fun is watching the Republicans continue to lie about the healthcare law while at the same time trying to run Mitt Romney, the man who set up the model for the ACA in Massachusetts, as their candidate for president in 2012. We should set up a bingo card for the different ways they try to explain how the law he promoted and signed into law is nothing at all like what was signed into law by President Obama. They will take the fine art of bullshit to heights we’ve only dreamed of.

PS: Sen. Ron Johnson, newly-elected Republican from Wisconsin, had an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal tearing down the healthcare bill. Aaron Carroll of The Incidental Economist takes him apart.