HealthCare.gov is so insecure that IT experts say they wouldn't use it themselves. The supposedly firm November 30 deadline for the web site's repair and recovery really isn't. Back-end problems abound. Earlier this week, Henry Chao told a congressional committee that "the back-office systems, the accounting systems, the payment systems, they still need be built." That is, they apparently haven't been started.
This is the time the New Yorker Magazine has chosen to publish a column (HT James Taranto at the Wall Street Journal's Best of the Web) by former Bill Clinton speechwriter Jeff Shesol officially entitled "The Republican War on Competence." The browser window title is even funnier: "Obamacare and the Republican War on Competence." You can't make this up. Shesol's content is just as hysterical.
On Tuesday's NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams noted President Obama and the four former living presidents reciting the Gettysburg Address to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's historic speech, but ignored the fact that Obama omitted the phrase "under God" from his reading and refused to attend the event marking the anniversary. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Williams made a point of declaring that project orchestrated by documentary filmmaker Ken Burns was "urging Americans to memorize and celebrate the Gettysburg Address," and emphasized: "Considering it's one of the most important speeches in American history, think about this, it was only about two minutes long, 272 words in all." Making Obama's gaffe of skipping two of those words all the more noticeable and embarrassing.
During a discussion on the Martin Bashir program Wednesday, The Daily Caller's Matt Lewis decided he had simply had enough. Fellow panelist and Georgetown professor Dr. Michael Eric Dyson was holding forth about how President Obama's political opposition was grounded not in criticism of his ideology or his (lack of) leadership but, you guessed it, racism.
Fed up with conservatives constantly being insulted on MSNBC as racist for opposing the president, Lewis interrupted Dyson and took him to task for refusing to deal with the actual merits of President Obama's policies and job approval, both of which are underwater in recent polls. To that, Dyson angrily shot back that Lewis was trying to cash in on his "white privilege" to "silence a black man" on the issue of race. [watch the video below the page break; listen to the MP3 audio here]
As first reported by NewsBusters, MSNBC’s Martin Bashir ended his program Friday giving arguably the most deplorable defamation of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin by anyone to date.
With no disciplinary action having been administered to Bashir by his superiors, conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh asked on his show Wednesday, "Let's say Dr. Krauthammer or Ted O'Baxter [Bill O'Reilly] would suggest that somebody do to Obama what Bashir suggested happen to Sarah Palin. What do you think would have happened?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
After censoring any coverage of the continuing ObamaCare disaster since Monday morning, NBC did manage to find time to cover Michelle Obama's fashion choices and the First Couple's first date on Wednesday's Today, with co-host Matt Lauer excitedly telling viewers to stay tuned: "First Lady Michelle Obama opens up about her very first date with the future president as well as her biggest fashion regret." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In the segment that followed, news reader Natalie Morales gushed: "We're used to seeing First Lady Michelle Obama looking very stylish and picture perfect, but in a new interview with BET, the First Lady admitted there is one particular look that she now regrets....the First Lady was also asked about her first date with the President and she revealed more about their day-long adventure than she's ever really revealed before."
On Tuesday's PoliticsNation, MSNBC.com Executive Editor Richard Wolffe accused Texas Senator Ted Cruz of "encouraging, inflaming and yes, flirting" with "fringe elements" who are "very ugly" and "racist" as he responded to a clip of the Texas Republican suggesting that the House could have grounds to impeach President Obama.
Host Al Sharpton set up the segment by recounting birther conspiracy theories against the President before moving to a completely unrelated clip of Senator Cruz, and then brought aboard wolffe for comment. Wolffe griped:
Wednesday's CBS This Morning stood out as the only Big Three morning show to spotlight Henry Chao's stunning revelation to Congress – that a significant portion of the I.T. infrastructure needed to support HealthCare.gov has yet to be built. NBC's Today completely ignored Chao's testimony, while GMA aired a 19-second brief that vaguely summarized the hearing. Meanwhile, the ABC show devoted a 1 minute and 45 second report to a puppy that sleeps with a baby.
Major Garrett reported that Chao "told Congress Tuesday the team making emergency repairs still has another major task to accomplish: building 30 percent to 40 percent of the web systems needed to make payments to insurance companies." Garrett also featured two soundbites from the testimony of a panel of cyber-security experts, who warned that the ObamaCare website remains vulnerable to hackers: [audio available here; video below the jump]
Former President George W. Bush was Jay Leno’s guest on NBC’s Tonight Show Tuesday.
When Leno mentioned that President Obama is getting all the late night jokes now, Bush marvelously responded, “Better him than me” (video follows with transcript and absolutely no need for additional commentary):
Can anyone imagine a top Bush 43 adviser, say Karl Rove, telling a reporter that his boss couldn't attend an important American historical anniversary event because "he's too busy trying to save the Republican Party"?
Dan Pfeiffer is "Assistant to the President of the United States and Senior Advisor to the President for Strategy and Communications." Today, in response to a tough but fair question tweeted by Ron Fournier at the National Journal, Pfeiffer said that President Barack Obama wasn't attending the ceremonies surrounding the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address because "there's this whole website thing that someone suggested might destroy the Dem Party." The exchange would surely generate a great deal of press coverage if it involved a conservative or Republican presidential adviser, but the only story other than at Fournier's National Journal was at the Hill, a popular burial ground for such stories. The Fournier-Pfeiffer exchange, with some external razzing, follows the jump (HT Twitchy):
Despite a running time of four hours, NBC's Today show on Tuesday skipped a blistering poll for Barack Obama and the latest news about the disastrous rollout of the President's health care law. Yet, the morning show managed five minutes for discussing the new TV special from singer John Rich and three minutes on table etiquette for Thanksgiving. Not exactly pressing topics. In contrast, both ABC's Good Morning America and CBS This Morning covered the current wave of bad news.
An ABC News/Washington Post survey found Obama's approval rating at just 42 percent, what Jon Karl referred to as "the lowest job approval we have ever seen" for his presidency. GMA's George Stephanopoulos conceded that these are "brutal numbers." Karl even relayed this result: "We asked voters if they can have a mulligan on the 2012 presidential election, who they would vote for? A plurality now say they would vote for Romney over Obama." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] The journalists also focused on what the administration knew in advance of the impending ObamaCare collapse.
Chris Plante at WMAL Radio in Washington reported on his show Tuesday that President Obama joined a cast of 61 "noted lawmakers, politicians, news anchors and celebrities, including every living President, in reciting the Gettysburg Address" for PBS star Ken Burns, who made "The Civil War" documentary series.
Everyone else delivered the address as Lincoln had written it, including the phrase, "that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom." But in his version of the address, President Obama omitted the words "under God." (Video below, at about 1:35.) Will the networks notice this gaffe?
Has the disastrous rollout of ObamaCare even made Whoopi Goldberg lose confidence in the President she adores?
On NBC’s Tonight Show Monday, The View co-host said, “I don't understand how a four-year-old can upload videos and put a whole website together and these guys can't do jack” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
In the wake of the disgusting comments MSNBC's Martin Bashir made about former Alaska governor Sarah Palin Friday, conservative talk radio host Mark Levin had some important observations regarding the incident Monday.
"MSNBC, ladies and gentlemen, is a hateful, vile, character assassinating outlet" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On the front of Tuesday's Style section of The Washington Post is an article titled "Hallowed ground, restored to its roots." The Post assigned gardening writer Adrian Higgins, who wrote of an "elaborate celebration of the 150th anniversary of the president's original remarks" at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in 1863. But nowhere in the 25-paragraph story about clearing the landscape is there any notion that Barack Obama, who has routinely compared himself to Lincoln, refused to attend.
George Condon of National Journal was the latest to report on the snub: "Instead of going to Gettysburg, he will go to the Four Seasons Hotel to address The Wall Street Journal CEO Council's annual meeting and talk about the economy. In his place, he has dispatched little-known Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell to the ceremonies." Spokesman Jay Carney offered nothing to reporters:
Now that even the most partisan Democrats have been forced to admit that the Healthcare.gov website has been a disaster, media lefties are scrambling to answer the question of how it happened—while simultaneously trying to draw as few implications about the leadership of President Obama.
As she so often does, CNN analyst Gloria Borger has provided a preview into what the conventional left-media analysis is going to become: Obama just doesn’t like bad news. And somehow this has something to do with not just George W. Bush but also Ronald Reagan.
Piers Morgan once said "a lot of things are just perfect about Barack Obama," but now the President is in the liberal CNN host's doghouse. According to Morgan's repeated comments on his Friday night show, the President's credibility had been completely shredded.
"I find it very difficult, this ObamaCare thing. When I see the repeated footage of him standing there saying, you can keep your doctor, you can keep your plan, just telling it outright porky pie to the American public, I don't like it. It's not the Barack Obama that I expected," Morgan lamented. [Video below the break.]
A scandalized Chris Matthews on Friday railed against Dick Cheney for having the audacity to call out Barack Obama's "lie" on Americans being able to keep their health insurance. Naturally, the Hardball anchor insinuated that the reason behind this was racism. An angry Matthews fumed, "Dick Cheney comes right out and calls [Obama] a liar. When a right-wing back-bencher did that four years ago, he was called out for rebuke even by his own party." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
The host continued, "Well, now what was condemned as historic bad behavior comes snarling out of Dick Cheney's mouth and nobody says to shut up." Matthews hinted, "Is this, calling the President a liar, the new language of American politics. Or is it a language specially treated for the country's first African-American president?"
Monday's CBS This Morning is the sole Big Three newscast so far to cover the firing of William P. White, a day after the now former D.C. official criticized President Obama's plan to let insurers temporarily restore canceled health insurance policies for a year. Nancy Cordes revealed how "D.C.'s insurance commissioner was abruptly fired by the city's Democratic mayor...after he warned that reinstating canceled plans 'undercuts the purpose' of the new health care exchanges." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
Cordes's mention of Mayor Vincent Gray sacking the commissioner came a day after the Washington Post buried their story on the firing on page C7 of its Metro section on Sunday.
Appearing as a guest on Friday's PoliticsNation, MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry asserted that Republican opposition to ObamaCare was "creating a faulty levee system in our health care" as she tried to argue that the ObamaCare disaster should not be referred to as President Obama's political equivalent of Hurricane Katrina. Host Al Sharpton posed:
On Monday's NBC Today, White House correspondent Peter Alexander lifted talking points directly from an Organizing for Action email while reporting on the political fallout from ObamaCare: "With his signature law under fire, the President faces a daunting to-do list to resuscitate ObamaCare. Number one, fix the website....Number two, clear up confusion....Number three, keep Democratic allies on board....And finally, regain Americans' trust." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In the OFA email, President Obama told his supporters: "I have just over three years left as president – and there's a lot left on my to-do list. That's why I want to talk with you....I want to cut through the noise and talk with you directly about where we're headed in the fight for change."
The hosts of the increasingly superficial Good Morning America on Monday hyped the latest episode of Dancing With the Stars, the newest Justin Bieber movie and previewed Vince Vaughan's film, a combined ten minutes of air time. Yet, the journalists at GMA allowed no time for the news that the insurer United Health is dropping thousands of doctors from its plan as a result of ObamaCare.
The Wall Street Journal on Saturday first reported, "UnitedHealth Group Inc., the nation's largest provider of privately managed Medicare Advantage plans, has dropped thousands of doctors from its networks in recent weeks." NBC's Today and CBS This Morning similarly ignored the story. Stuart Varney highlighted the loss of doctors on Fox Business. [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Well, that settles it. Sunday on ABC's "This Week" (video here) New York Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand admitted that "We all knew" that Obamacare's core guarantee — "If you like your plan-doctor-provider, you can keep your plan-doctor-provider" — was false. That's "we" as in "all of us Democrats."
There's no wiggle room in what Gillibrand said, as will be demonstrated after the jump. Also note how guest host Martha Raddatz, with her use of "we," admitted to viewers that she's on the same team with Washington's Democrats two and possibly three different times (HT Truth Revolt via Ed Driscoll).
While the liberal media may finally be admitting the obvious -- that the ObamaCare rollout has been an “embarrassing,” “botched” failure that has thrown millions off their insurance -- that’s not what they were predicting about the Affordable Care Act when it was first introduced.
Not long ago, they assured their viewers that they could keep their health plans if they liked them; predicted Americans would embrace ObamaCare once they experienced it; and even claimed it would “reduce the deficit.” They also warned any obstruction of ObamaCare by conservatives would result in the death of children and the end of America as a “world power.”
The following is a Top 10 List of the Worst Liberal Media Quotes Pushing ObamaCare: (videos after the jump)
“While I acknowledge he has made a number of mistakes in recent years, I stand firm in my conviction that Barack Obama is one of the greatest presidents America has ever seen. I believe history will prove this, and with time, he will be remembered in the annals of history as a revered revolutionary," Lynch oozed. Even Obamacare is one of the 12 reasons Obama’s the best ever:
It's hard to tell whether a Sunday morning tweet (HT Twitchy) by the Politico's Glenn Thrush is an attempt to deflect attention from the historic Obamacare trainwreck or a sign of a serious midlife crisis.
Poor Glenn is bored. He "can't watch/listen to another word" about the Affordable Care Act. Apparently, writing a roughly 7000-word Politico Magazzzz ... zzz ... zzz ... excuse me, Magazine item about the utter uselessness and policy detachment of most of President Obama's cabinet is more interesting to him (I'm estimating the total word count because I got bored after reading Page 1 of 5 and seeing my word processor count over 1,500 words). Glenn, you really need to get out of Washington and talk to some of the millions who have seen their policies cancelled, along with a few of those who have seen their health insurance premiums double or triple under Obamacare with often worse coverage. One thing they aren't is bored.
In a pathetic analyis piece at the Politico on Friday morning, Politico's Todd S. Purdum engaged in egregious excuse-making driven by a de facto admission that the Affordable Care Act would never have passed if the public had been told the truth about what was in it.
This is the same Todd S. Purdum who recently, as Mark Finkelstein at NewsBusters reported earlier this month, accused Republicans of "calculated sabotage" of Obamacare, and compared their opposition to the "pattern of 'massive resistance' not seen since the Southern states’ defiance of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954." His Friday exercise, which should have been headlined "The Obamacare Scam," was barely less odious (bolds and numbered tags are mine):
My nomination for the best one-liner of the week by someone not specifically employed as a comic goes to TheBlaze TV’s Amy Holmes.
In a Fox News MediaBuzz discussion Sunday about how much of the media have turned on the President as a result of the disastrous rollout of ObamaCare, she said, “I think it's fair to say he's getting a colonoscopy from the press” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
"I think there is no way he could not have known the truth. There was very clearly a situation in which they were thinking, you know what? The media never holds us accountable. They're not going to hold us accountable here."
So said Wyoming Republican senatorial candidate Liz Cheney on Fox News Sunday about the President's "You Can Keep It" pledge (video follows with transcript and commentary):