Hitler, Stalin, “protestors”, “young people”, “U.S. scientists”, the “middle class”, “U.S. women”, the Ayatollah Khomeini, “the computer”, “the whistleblowers”, “You” have all been named Time Magazine’s “man” or woman or group or movement or machine or whatever of the year. This year it is “ObamaCare” that deserves the epithet as the entity that “most affected the news and our lives, for good or ill, and embodied what was important about the year.”
Beyond any doubt ObamaCare is singularly responsible for the most eye opening, mind-blowing, political planetary shaking of the past decade. Since 2007 we have been writing on target analysis about Barack Obama only to be rewarded with sneers of “crazy” from the Obama Hopium guzzlers many of whom write for Big Media outlets. Now, thanks to ObamaCare what we wrote that was derided as “crazy, bitter, clingy, dead-ender, rat-f*cking” is now conventional wisdom. Our analysis of Obama is majoritarian opinion. But you knew that… we’ve also written that before.
There is another reason why ObamaCare is deserving of a Time Magazine cover story as the most important news story of the year. In a little noticed article by Carl Cannon ObamaCare is placed in the strategic center of politics it deserves. Cannon’s article lists the many Republicans that denounced ObamaCare. Christie calls ObamaCare “an awful law. Senator Tim Scott slams it as “an absolute failure” with the worst “yet to come”. Senator Ted Cruz pits at it as a “train wreck”. Senator Rand Paul deplores the violation of the Constitution which is ObamaCare. Senator Kelly Ayotte sneers that ObamaCare is “a mess”. Governor Scott Walker plots an escape hatch for Wisconsin residents. Governor Susanna Martinez denounces “the ultimate in social engineering”. Senator John McCain calls for “total repeal”. Carl Cannon notes that this list “pretty much covers the ideological spectrum of the modern Republican Party.”
Cannon’s contribution is not that inventory of what ObamaCare has wrought. It is the strategic landscape Cannon adroitly paints that is so smart. It’s what we will call The Grand Army Of The Republicans:
“Such unity has been a long time in coming. Someday, they should stop and thank Barack Obama. He’s no socialist, but he has helped fill a void that has plagued Republicans since Mikhail Gorbachev arrived on the world stage. [snip]
The Berlin Wall came down, the Iron Curtain went away, the Soviet Union split apart, and America’s longest war came to a close.
Democrats swiftly sought to turn the national conversation to talk of a “peace dividend” and increasing spending on domestic programs. And in the run-up to the 1992 Republican convention in Houston, influential New York Times scribe R.W. “Johnny” Apple wrote a little too gleefully, “The end of the cold war has robbed the president’s party of one of its mightiest swords.”
But the GOP’s problem wasn’t just that the Democrats’ program suddenly seemed more appealing and less risky. It was that the Cold War had knitted together the then-diverse Republican coalition. In the post-World War II Republican Party, two great factions had emerged.”
Bill Clinton was very well aware that with the forced collapse of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics he could run for president by “Putting People First”. The foreign policy barrier to the presidency was no longer operational. With the end of the Cold War it was likely that Americans would turn to domestic issues.
Bill Clinton won the presidency while running against an incumbent Republican president. Bill Clinton then set about to dismember the Republican Party and steal some of their most potent domestic issues. From welfare reform to school uniforms Bill Clinton led the Democratic Party into the mainstream of American life and neither Special Prosecutors sniffing panties nor personal misbehavior well known to the American voters before election time could stop the Big Dawg and his centrist party of, by, and for the people. Simultaneously the Republican Party was in a vortex of disarray as their Cold War unity of factions fell apart:
“The first included economic conservatives—apostles of small government at home and promotion of freedom abroad. Their galvanizing issues were lower taxes, less government regulation, and a muscular U.S. military. The second brought together the social conservatives whose animating issues ranged over two generations from school prayer to abortion to gays in the military and same-sex marriage. They, too, opposed communism, a system that dismissed religion as “the opiate of the masses” and that persecuted believers.
In Ronald Reagan, each side found its champion, the results being landslide victories in 1980 and 1984 and a 1988 Reagan farewell that left the party stronger than it has been in nearly a century.
Today, that advantage has dissipated into a morass of conservative purity tests, Tea Party-fueled protests, government shutdowns, and intramural culture wars. The upshot has been Democratic presidential tickets outpolling Republicans in five of the last six national elections.”
George W. Bush was in many ways an accidental president. His “compassionate conservatism” and family named masked intra-party divisions but did not end them. Bush’s popularity was on the wane during his first summer in office only to spectacularly rise after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks on the World Trade Center. Bush then depleted the good will Americans had in him with an ill advised war in Iraq which only helped Iran become a renewed power center.
The Iraq War ate Bush from within and by the time of Katrina and the attempts to reform Social Security the Republican Party factions hated each other and cared more about party dominance than party victory. After eight years which ended with a financial debacle and Wall Street bailouts not only were Democrats positioned for victory but Republican factions were ready to kill each other. Indeed, many Republicans secretly or openly wanted Barack Obama to win in 2008 because an Obama victory would force the Republican Party closer to what they wanted it to be not what the other factions wanted the Party to be. Some Republicans/conservatives, such as Peggy Noonan, preferred to attack those of us who warned against Barack Obama in order to ensure an Obama 2008 victory. That was then. ObamaCare is now. ObamaCare brings back Republican Party unity and the Grand Army of the Republicans:
“Obamacare has changed the game, not in the sense of making the GOP brand popular again—there’s still a ways to go on that score—but by reminding Republicans what they have in common.
The Affordable Care Act is a giant, nanny state, one-size-fits-all, top-down government overreach that appalls economic conservatives. Meanwhile, its stringent requirements that employers do such things as provide “free” contraceptive care is an affront to social conservatives, not to mention the Catholic Church. To every Republican, the thing is a parody of liberal excess.
Republicans now know what they are against, as they did in the Cold War.“
ObamaCare reshaped the political strategic landscape. Even at the liberal The Atlantic the issue discussed is The Democratic Party: How It Can Save Itself. Long time Democratic strategist Ted Van Dyk is worried and sees the need to change. Van Dyk foolishly calls Hillary Clinton “the establishment candidate” in 2008 which she was not. Barack Obama was the one that Reid, Pelousy, Daschle, Kennedy, and Kerry secretly anointed. Still Van Dyk makes some clear headed judgements about the disasters to come for what was once a great American political party.
Using every bit of political finesse and diplomatic language Van Dyk damns with praise and strongly urges Obama Dimocrats to toss aside the Hopium:
“Democrats need to return to the mindset of their most skillful prior leaders. Those leaders, from the New Deal onward, always began by asking: What are our country’s most pressing needs? Then, what are our proposals to meet those needs? Finally, how can we mobilize majorities in the country and Congress to enact those proposals?
Comprehensive healthcare reform was a worthy priority for the administration. It was undertaken, however, at a time when the country remained financially and economically unstable—and when people of all outlooks were wary about an ambitious remake of a huge part of the economy. Unlike Medicare, Medicaid, or the Medicare prescription-drug benefit, it was formulated and narrowly passed on a one-party basis without public opinion supporting it. If he were to do it over, Obama would no doubt take the Lyndon Johnson/Ted Kennedy approach to healthcare reform and enlist a few Republican leaders and ideas, such as tort reform or selling insurance across state lines.
That mindset does not focus on one-upping Republicans in the next news cycle or gaining an edge for the next election. It focuses on serious governance.
Environmental, cultural, social, and other issues have moved forward on the national agenda since FDR and LBJ laid down New Deal and Great Society policy frameworks for the country. But the Big Two issues—the economy and national security—remain the Big Two, and remain to be addressed.
The first imperative is to provide long-term financial and economic stability to the country. Residual federal debt of $17 to $31 trillion, depending on whether you count off-budget obligations, must be reduced. This is necessary not only to fend off inflation and protect the dollar but also to facilitate ongoing governance. From a liberal or Democratic viewpoint, there can be few public initiatives if an ever-growing share of public resources is gobbled up by debt service.
This will require a bipartisan fix to taxes, spending, and entitlements along the lines proposed by Obama’s Simpson-Bowles commission.”
Van Dyk should not be so diplomatic. Obama Dimocrats will denounce him no matter how soft his words or how mealy mouthed his excuses for Barack Obama are. Van Dyk’s critique, however muted, stings:
“But Obama opted instead to flay Republicans for their supposed hostility to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. He clearly did not recognize that, unless dealt with comprehensively and in bipartisan fashion, this issue would remain unresolved. A relatively painless combination of measures, recognized for decades as a solution, would include cost-of-living adjustments; small increases in the ages for Social Security and Medicare eligibility; and lifting the cap on earnings subject to tax withholding. The only thing missing has been the political will to apply the solution now rather than in a later presidential term. The next president will have to do it all over again.
Another part of this challenge—comprehensive tax reform—must also be addressed on a bipartisan basis. [snip]
On the national-security side, Democrats need to reconsider the Wilsonianism that has pervaded their thinking since World War I. Both parties, but Democrats more than Republicans, have wanted “to make the world safe for democracy” with interventions in many places where American vital interests were not at stake. [snip]
Democrats also must reconsider the habit of seeing Americans as senior citizens, African Americans, Latinos, Asians, Jews, single mothers, Baby Boomers, Generation X and Y members, secular or religious, higher-educated or not, debtors or savers, union or non-union, wealthy or members of the middle class. These are useful categories for pollsters and campaign consultants as they try to figure out what certain people think and the best way to influence them. But they are a trap for policymakers. [snip]
Wedge politics and tailored political messaging can bring a campaign or even a presidency short-term success. But, for the longer run, most Americans feel they are in it together and badly want bipartisan action to keep the economy stable and growing, to keep the country safe here and abroad, and to keep American society open and fair.”
You don’t have to agree with Van Dyk’s policy prescriptions nor his analysis. But his introspection is brought about because of ObamaCare. Strategists from all parties see what has happened during the Obama years and what will happen in the future to Obama Dimocrats. It ain’t pretty:
“Pundits on the left and right agree: Obamacare will leave a mark on Democrats in the 2014 elections.
When the most hopey-changey of journalists, Ezra Klein of The Washington Post, writes “Change hurts, particularly in health care insurance, and it may well hurt Democrats in 2014,” you know we’re headed for a stormy political year.
There are 33 U.S. Senate seats up for election in 2014 — 13 held by Republicans and 20 held by Democrats. The GOP needs a six-seat swing to take control the Senate.
Conventional political wisdom holds that it’s still a long time before these senators face the electorate. The flub of HealthCare.Gov on Oct. 1 was ugly, to be sure, but the website will get fixed. People will forget. The president says the website problems are a mere “bump in the road.”
But Democratic strategists know better. It’s a “bump in the road” on a highway to a massive reconfiguration of health care. That spells disruption, and in politics, disruption is a dangerous thing.
So far, about 5 million people in the individual market have seen their policies canceled. By late summer and early fall of 2014, an estimated 80 million more people will have their employer-based insurance yanked out from underneath them.
This won’t be a “glitch.” This will be Obamacare manifesting itself exactly as Democrats envisioned.”
Because of ObamaCare Americans are discovering that Obama is a treacherous lying boob:
“When most or all the measures fall simultaneously, it means that something dramatic has happened to undermine the public’s confidence in the president,” Sabato says. “The Obamacare rollout and presidential misleading on keeping your doctor and insurance explain [Obama’s] recent polling fate.”
But not entirely. There’s another factor. Obama is on his own now. He’s flying solo as president. And what the polls reveal, when taken together, is a rising concern that he may not be up to the job.“
Because of ObamaCare that “situation comedy” demographic which is the Obama Coalition is discovering that Obama is a treacherous lying boob:
“President Obama won re-election with the rock-solid support of what has become known as the “Obama Coalition” — young people, minorities, women, and low-income voters. Without a firm foundation — and high turnout — among those groups, Obama would not be in the White House today.
Now, little more than a year after the president’s re-election, his job approval rating has fallen among all segments of the American electorate. But it has fallen the most among those who did the most to elect him.
For example, according to a new Gallup compilation, Obama’s job approval rating among Hispanic Americans has plunged from 75 percent in December 2012 to 52 percent today — a drop of 23 percentage points, the sharpest decline among any voter group. Among Americans who make less than $24,000 a year, the president’s approval rating has fallen from 64 percent last December to 46 percent today. Among Americans 18 to 29 years of age, it has fallen from 61 percent to 46 percent. Among women, it has fallen from 57 percent to 43 percent.”
The Hopium Guzzlers are waking up from their druggie slumbers. One of them, Micheal Zuckerman, an Obama campaign worker is comically crestfallen in his plea to Barack Obama published in The Atlantic. Bemoaning that ObamaCare has “lost its soul” Zuckerman provides same laughs at his expense but there is at least an acknowledgement, through his tears, that all is not well in Obamaland and there is a fight in the Obama Dimocrat party:
“Voters were already tuning Obama out before the Healthcare.gov woes. Now, with tanking approval ratings, he’s in danger of becoming a lame duck. In this climate, a series of cautious, policy-heavy speeches about the ACA’s benefits is unlikely to break through. [snip]
Third, Obama is the standard-bearer of a party in the midst of a fight over the validity of its philosophical underpinning. (The administration’s Healthcare.gov incompetence has not helped.) With 2014 looming and many of his supporters in retreat (or at least feeling that way), Obama needs to fight the progressive corner. If the country has really come to a point at which a Democratic president won’t defend the basic ideas behind “income redistribution”—something we’ve been doing for over 150 years now—Democrats are soon going to have much bigger problems than a malfunctioning website. Obama’s opponents certainly aren’t shying away from making their own moral claims.”
The philosophical underpinnings of a party that nominated and elected a flim-flam con man are not sturdy. The renown pollster Charlie Cook has done all he can to salvage Barack Obama. Now ObamaCare forces Cook to stop his defense of Obama and issue storm warnings:
“Can Democrats Recover From the Obamacare Catastrophe?
If Republicans don’t flub the coming fiscal debates like they did in the fall, voters will focus squarely on the health care rollout.
Most graphs of polling data show shifts that are very gradual. (Tracking real-time changes in poll results often is about as exciting as watching paint dry.) Recently, however, the HuffPost Pollster website produced a graph of national polling on Congress that showed one of the most dramatic shifts I’ve ever seen in 40 years of involvement in politics. It charts responses to the question of whether voters would like Republicans or Democrats to control the House.”
The other Charlie Cooke calls this implosion caused by ObamaCare “the exodus”:
“In late 2013, the GOP is not only still around, it is ascendant. The magical Obama coalition, thought by many to be composed of mere automatons who would follow the Democratic party wherever it went, is starting to fracture. This is not to say that its members are lining up to re-register as Republicans and subscribe to National Review, of course. But they are expressing dissatisfaction — and, crucially, not just with this president but with the central ideological achievement of his tenure. Obamacare, not time, is dragging the man down. Who would have thought that government policies could lead to political change?“
Stumbling, bumbling, treacherous Obama was sure to make the Republican Party ascendant. And as Jay Cost notes, 2014 is going to likely be a banner year for Republicans. In large part that is because united teams win. ObamaCare united Republicans as a party. Republicans are also forging an alliance against ObamaCare with the American voter.
The ObamaCare disasters cannot be ignored. Even today in the New York Times the ObamaCare lies are published for all Hopium Guzzlers to see if not read. Ever so slowly even Hopium Guzzlers are learning that ObamaCare premiums are followed by high co-pays and really high deductibles.
Barack Obama can run and hide inside caskets intended for men of accomplishment. Barack Obama’s allies can continue to race-bait as was done recently at MSNBC: Let’s face it, “ObamaCare” was a word coined by wealthy white men to diminish Obama’s accomplishments. It won’t work however to help Barack Obama. ObamaCare has Obama on the death list.
ObamaCare has exposed Barack Obama as a treacherous boob. For that alone, ObamaCare deserves to be Time Magazine’s 2013 thing of the year. And if events go as we suspect be prepared for Time to award ObamaCare the thing of the year award in 2014 as well.