Thomas B. Edsall, a pillar of the mainstream media’s liberalism, wonders in the New York Times today whether the federal government can manage something as complex as health care:
Health care as a necessity comes only after food, shelter and income security. The mismanagement of the website HealthCare.gov and the cancellation of millions of policies pushes an underlying question out into the open: is the federal government capable of managing the provision of a fundamental service through an extraordinarily complex system?
Better late than never I suppose. And like Robert Kuttner, he sees the political handwriting on the wall:
The chaos surrounding efforts to activate HealthCare.gov reinforces a key conservative meme: that whatever the test is, government will fail it. Insofar as voters experience their interaction with government as frustrating and unreliable, the brunt of political damage will hit Democrats, both as the party of government and as the party of Obamacare. . .
Obama and his party’s elected officials not only have the elections of 2014 and 2016 to worry about, but also the future prospects of the liberal agenda writ large, which had appeared to be slowly gaining momentum before the Obamacare portal snafu. . . In effect, all the gains Democrats made during the period Republicans shut down the government and demanded an end to Obamacare have been lost since Obamacare was actually launched.
And then, lo and behold, this paragraph appears:
“The redistributive arithmetic of Obamacare’s architecture could never add up,” Steven Hayward, a visiting scholar in conservative thought and policy at the University of Colorado, wrote in Forbes magazine: “The wonder is that Obama’s political team didn’t see this coming and prepare a pre-emptive strategy for dealing with the inevitable exposure of the duplicity at the heart of Obamacare’s logic.”
So what does Obama have to say now? You won’t believe this:
“We are going to have to obviously remarket and rebrand [Obamacare], and that will be challenging in this political environment.”
Rebranding? Rebranding?!? Talk about clueless. It’s like offering coupons to people who got cold or poisoned delivery pizza. (Let’s see who knows this really obscure reference.)