WashPost Bookends ObamaCare Story with Gripes of Liberal Community College Teacher

ObamaCare is a poison pill that has unintended consequences for part-time employees all over the country, including in the Washington Post's backyard. The liberal paper cannot simply ignore such developments, but when it covers such developments, you can be sure it will find ways to spin the story to take blame away from President Obama and direct it towards conservative Republicans.

Take Sandhya Somashekhar's July 24 print edition front-pager, "Health law's unintended impact on part-timers." The Post staff writer opened by introducing readers to one Kevin Pace, a Northern Virginia Community College adjunct instructor whose employer "slashed his hours this spring to avoid a Jan. 1 requirement that full-time workers for large employers be offered health insurance." "We work so hard for so little pay," Pace groused, "You would think they would want to make an investment in society, pay the teachers back and give us health care," he told Somashekhar, who similarly closed out the article by giving Pace the last word:


Pace, the music professor, said it will be a challenge to make ends meet, even with the odd jobs he does to supplement his college income, which has been cut to $17,000 a year. He gives bass and guitar lessons in his Del Ray home, plays live gigs around the Washington area and runs a nonprofit group called the D.C. Jazz Composers Collective.

He said the state should have recognized the contribution of workers such as himself and coughed up the extra money to offer insurance. Because that didn’t happen, he said, he would have preferred to keep the status quo rather than to end up with reduced hours and an $8,000 pay cut.

“We treat this as our job,” Pace, 34, said. “We devote all of our time and love and hours to teaching our adjunct classes. This isn’t right on any level.”

Pace was also featured in two photographs on the jump page of the article. "Leah Nickelsburg, 11, gets a guitar lesson from Kevin Pace in his Del Ray home. Such odd jobs have helped supplement his income," read the caption for the larger photo. Another photo, showing case "leav[ing] Northern Virginia Community College after a class" noted that "The state cut his hours, which reduced his pay."

While Somashekhar did cite state officials who explained the budgetary constraints which compelled them to cut back hours for adjunct professors, the overall impression left by the article is that hard-working folks like Pace are screwed over by a stingy, conservative state government.

Pace is certainly entitled to his opinions, but while the Post portrayed Pace as an earnest, mild-mannered and seemingly apolitical music teacher, his Facebook wall indicates strongly left-of-center bordering on hostility towards American being a "POS"  -- piece of s**t -- country that "Has it backwards" and isn't liberal enough (emphasis mine):

  • "Let's see...make people stupid, pollute the world, let half of the US burn... Republicans are idiots," Pace commented on Monday, linking to a Huffington Post article headlined, "House Republicans Propose Cuts to EPA, Arts."
  • "G.O.P. Ensuring that NC will be last in education," Pace commented in a Monday link to a Charlotte Observer article, "N.C. budget would end teacher tenure, pay some private school tuition."
  • From July 19: "What's sad is that health care is a universal right and should NEVER be tied to business. What is more important, the right to own a gun and shoot up elementary schools or the right to see your doctor? (P.O.S) U.S.A. Has it backwards."
  • From July 18: "What makes America great? Racism... Assholes," Pace snarked as he linked to a Tumblr page which shamed Twitter users who made racist and xenophobic tweets about Marc Anthony's performance of "God Bless America" at the 2013 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
  • From July 16: "I spoke with McDonnell's office again today. They do not care that the employer count for Obamacare was pushed back a year. McDonnell will not change his "budget". They are not concerned that we lost our jobs, homes, and the possibility for private insurance. They also do not care that classes are being cut. Every time I posed a question regarding the above, they blew it off."
  • From July 2: "We have 2 days to get 30 more signatures. Please take the time to sign this. Classes are already being cancelled at an alarming rate resulting from Bob McDonnell's cuts. Please sign!" This linked to a Change.org petition form, "Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell: Re-Think Your Limit on Adjunct Faculty in Virginia "
  • From June 26: "Cuccinelliisabigot.com. He is still against equality on this great day. What a dick."
  • From June 26: "Hell Yes marriage equality!!!!!"
  • From June 25: "This exact thing will happen if shit head Ken Cuccinelli gets elected," Pace commented in a link to a Washington Post story headlined "Hunger strike protests Philadelphia school layoffs; laid-off music teachers play goodbye show"

Other wall posts indicate that Pace has been eagerly awaiting the publication of Somashekhar's profile.

"Keep an eye on the Washington Post!! Adjunct Advocacy," Pace commented on July 9. "We will be in the Washington Post this week," Pace promised on July 16. "[F]ront page!" exulted Pace this morning.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters