Conservatives across the fruited plain are likely going to be shocked by this - and liberals extremely angered! - but the fact-checking website PolitiFact on Thursday named President Obama's "If you like your health care plan, you can keep it" promise the Lie of the Year.
Such was announced on CNN's The Lead (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
Urging his viewers to "get your tapes rolling at home" to record his prediction, that great Nostradamus of MSNBC predicted on his Wednesday, December 11 program that come March 1, five million people would be signed up for ObamaCare.
"I mean, if we have got 3 million people who have been on to it already, where are we going to be in April?!" the MSNBC host pondered aloud, referring to the total number of visitors to the HealthCare.gov website. "This baby is going to be off the chart!" Dr. Schultz thundered as he gave his prognosis [WATCH video below page break; LISTEN to mp3 audio here]:
Polls have not been kind to President Obama or his health care law lately, and MSNBC has had no choice but to acknowledge that fact. However, on Wednesday’s Andrea Mitchell Reports, NBC News political director Chuck Todd desperately fished for a silver lining in the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll numbers on ObamaCare.
Todd told Mitchell that health care was the key to the president turning around his own low approval ratings. While acknowledging that 50 percent of poll respondents said ObamaCare is a bad idea, Todd found a faint ray of sunshine for supporters of the law. He told the host: [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The New York Times is including all the Happy Talk That’s Fit to Print. Their latest poll came with the headline “Obama Sees a Rebound In His Approval Rating.” One might think it’s getting close to 50 percent.
Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Allison Kopicki wrote, “President Obama’s approval ratings, which hit his all-time low last month, have returned to where they were before the rollout of the health care law’s enrollment process.” Talk about your faint praise: Obama’s back up to 42 percent, compared to 43 percent in September....where it was right before the 2010 midterm elections.
Jay Leno took another shot at the President Tuesday night.
Early in his opening monologue, the NBC Tonight Show host commented about Kanye West wanting to be the Obama of clothing saying, “To achieve his goal, he's designing fashion nobody wants and offering it on a website that doesn't work” (video follows with transcript and absolutely no need for additional commentary):
Congratulations to New York Times writers Lizette Alvarez and Jennifer Preston. They managed to write an upbeat article about the "vastly improved' Obamacare website without mentioning not one but two huge elephants in the room.
The writers bubble over with excitement over the fact that in the first week of December, 112,000 people "selected plans" at the HealthCare.gov website. Left unsaid was the fact that there is still no payment system on that website plus the fact that anybody providing their personal information is at extreme risk of having his personal information hacked due to the fact that HealthCare.gov continues to lack security. However, such "minor" details are conveniently ignored as the Times writers provide us with happy talking points:
As NewsBusters has been reporting, NBC Tonight Show host Jay Leno has been very critical of the current White House resident in recent months.
Possibly his harshest joke yet came Monday when he said, "I tell you, this winter storm has left thousands without electricity. It's as if President Obama had taken over the power companies" (video follows with commentary):
The folks at MSNBC are so comfortable at this point repeating White House talking points they don’t even try to hide it.
On MSNBC Live Monday, substitute host Brian Shactman, after reading administration propaganda about ObamaCare, asked a Democratic Congresswoman – who is also a member of the White House strike team pushing said propaganda – “What are we doing to get that message out there a little more?” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace was not in the mood to put up with Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel's standard-issue leftist guff on Sunday. Last night, I noted that the pressed Emanuel until he forced a "yes" out of him to a simple question: "Didn't he (President Obama) say, 'If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.'" That move brought out Emanuel's ridiculous contention that what Obama somehow really meant was, "If you want to pay more for an insurance company that covers your doctor, you can do that. This is a matter of choice." Everyone but you and a few deluded leftists know that isn't so, Zeke.
A good example of Wallace standing up to what amounted to a bullying attempt by Emanuel, followed by a couple of other howlers delivered by Zeke the Bleak, are after the jump.
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan made some rather ominous economic observations Sunday.
Appearing on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS, Greenspan said, “[T]he level of uncertainty about the very long-term future is far greater than at any time I particularly remember.” He blamed it on “government intervention [that] has been so horrendous that businesses cannot basically decide what to do about the future” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
So it's come to this. During the past week, the Associated Press reported today, "Federal health officials," meaning "the Obama administration," began "urging" (i.e., "telling") counselors and navigators around the country to stop using paper applications for Obamacare coverage, "because of concerns those applications would not be processed in time." It seems that either Team Obama or AP (my money is on AP) doesn't mind risking criticism for waiting to let this news out until a weather- and sports-dominated Saturday. It's apparently okay to keep those who don't know any better, i.e., those who went to the trouble of printing a paper app on their own, in the dark.
So you shouldn't use paper. But the vastly under-reported but inarguable fact is that HealthCare.gov isn't secure; experienced IT security experts strongly warn against using it. So consumers shouldn't be going online either, meaning that there's no defensible way to apply for coverage before the end of the year. Of course, the Associated Press's Kelli Kennedy didn't tell readers that (no form of the word "security" is in her late Saturday morning story), just as she and Time Magazine's web site failed to do earlier this week (bolds are mine):
Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer had some harsh words for Barack Obama Friday.
Appearing on Fox News’s Special Report, Krauthammer said, “It's as if this guy discovers everything late, as if he wandered into the White House on a White House tour and discovered himself in the Oval Office as president.”
In his December 4 story, "A bogus health care website, courtesy of the GOP," MSNBC.com's Geoffrey Cowley essentially compared a California Republican website which denounces ObamaCare to the numerous fraudulent scam sites cropping up which claim to sell health insurance but are ripping unsuspecting consumers off.
Cowley also seemingly lamented the inability of California officials to shut down the site, CoveringHealthCareCA.com, which he charged was a nefarious GOP plot to "undermine Obamacare" by "divert[ing] people" who were "looking for the [state] exchange site" (emphasis mine):
Seung Min Kim and Jennifer Haberkorn at the Politico have apparently been living in hermetically sealed Beltway caves since early October.
In an item which appeared Tuesday evening, the pair acted as if the idea that Americans stand a great chance of losing access to their current doctors and other medical providers as a result of signing up for a health care plan through the Obamacare exchange is something brand new. Kim and Haberkorn write that Republican opponents of Obamacare are going to have to "replicate the uproar" which occurred with "If you like your plan, you can keep your plan," when the uproar has been building for weeks, based on numerous stories involving real people (bolds and numbered tags are mine):
As NewsBusters has been reporting, CBS News has been one of the leading mainstream media outlets in exposing the failings of the ObamaCare website.
One of the standouts has been investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson who took to Twitter Wednesday to absolutely pound the Obama administration for refusing to release information about Healthcare.gov security tests and enrollment figures:
Happy talk, keep talking happy talk,
Talk about things you'd like to do,
You gotta have a dream, if you don't have a dream,
How you gonna have a dream come true? ---"Happy Talk" from "South Pacific."
Carrie Budoff Brown was bubbling over with joy about a supposed Obamacare "surge" in her Politico article. Yes, supposedly massive new Obamacare numbers were suddenly showing up in the past few days. But what did they really mean? Fortunately for those praying for Obamacare success, Brown did not burst that joy bubble until well into the article with crucial caveats to the "surge" numbers. First let us look at the Happy Talk Brown presents at the beginning of the article before we delve into the buried inconvenient truths:
On Tuesday's MSNBC Daily Rundown, host Chuck Todd was eager to declare the ObamaCare disaster to be over and claim Republicans were now of the defensive: "With 750,000 visitors to the site yesterday without a crash and the Obama administration now confident that the website is functioning...the Republican repeal movement may actually now fizzle out completely." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Todd attempted to bolster his assertion by citing leftist Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank, who on Monday declared that supposed fixes to HealthCare.gov meant that "opponents of the Affordable Care Act have lost what may have been their last chance to do away with the law."
According to the letter of the law, the much-talked-about federal subsidies for purchasing ObamaCare are only to be disbursed to eligible customers who bought them via state-run health care exchanges, NOT the federal HealthCare.gov website, argue plaintiffs in a lawsuit before a federal district court in Washington, D.C. The Obama administration, you may recall, is promising subsidies regardless of whether they are purchased from the federal exchange or state exchanges.
Reporting on the lawsuit in today's paper, the Washington Post's SandhyaSomashekhar waited until halfway through her page A2 article -- headlined "Health-law critics see case as their last, best shot" in the print edition -- to summarize the legal reasoning behind the plaintiffs in the case. What's more, the Post staff writer seasoned her article throughout with loaded language attacking the lawsuit (emphasis mine):
It's becoming quite clear that the Obama administration's treatment of the press, along with revelations of deceit associated with promises about the Affordable Care Act, are causing some members of the media to think differently about this White House than they did in the first term.
On Wednesday, National Journal's Ron Fournier told talk radio's Laura Ingraham, "[T]his is a propaganda outfit...they are running a government-sponsored media organization" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On November 19, Henry Chao, deputy chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, told a congressional committee that "[W]e still have to build the payment systems to make payments to issuers in January" for those who have enrolled in plans through HealthCare.gov.
On Black Friday, while almost no one was paying attention, Alex Nussbaum at Bloomberg News reported that "The administration is setting up a temporary process ... (in which) insurers will estimate what they are owed rather than have the government calculate the bill." Somehow, they'll settle up (or "true up") at the detailed level later. Tuesday evening, Roberta Rampton and Caroline Humer at Reuters covered this development. The Reuters item, which went live about an hour before Megyn Kelly's broadcast last night, moved the Fox News host to treat it as her lead story.
As NewsBusters has been reporting the past few months, late night comics have been having a field day with the disaster that is ObamaCare.
On ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live Tuesday, the host spent a good part of his monologue trashing the program including an observation that “the number of speeches Obama has made about affordable healthcare is greater than the number of people who have actually signed up for affordable healthcare” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Call it a case of interview envy--in the context of an ongoing feud between two MSNBC hosts.
There has been bad blood between Joe Scarborough and Chris Matthews for years, as here, here and here. On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough took the occasion of Chris Matthews' impending interview of President Obama to mock the way Matthews' on-air schedule has shrunk. In a particularly low blow, Scarborough even compared the Hardball host to Regis Philbin. View the video after the jump.
How does one do a report on an important commerce-related web site without mentioning serious known security problems which are so bad that respected IT experts warn that it shouldn't be used? Ask Kate Pickert at Time's Swampland blog and Kelli Kennedy at the Associated Press, because that's exactly what they did.
Pickert and Kennedy reviewed the new and not much improved HealthCare.gov on December 2 and 3, respectively. No variation of the word "security" is in either writeup. Both reports ignore the fact that IT experts are absolutely appalled at the site's lack of security.
As NewsBusters reported Tuesday, President Obama has chosen to sit down with one of his biggest fans in the news media Thursday.
At the beginning of Tuesday’s Hardball, host Chris Matthews promoted the event hysterically saying, “We're going to be hitting my biggest questions with the President” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Well now the landing page for the Lean Forward network is hailing HealthCare.gov as the "website [which] might just save your life." The teaser headline links to msnbc.com staffer AliyahFrumin's gauzy treatment of President Obama's latest speech plugging his troubled health care overhaul (emphasis mine; see screen capture below page break):
MSNBC weekend anchor Alex Witt once again showed that she is a big fan of ObamaCare on Sunday’s edition of her eponymous program. Witt’s guest, Dafna Linzer of msnbc.com, had just criticized one of Rep. Mike Rogers’ (R-Mich.) comments on that morning’s Meet the Press, in which Rogers was critical of ObamaCare.
Witt recalled another problem with the rollout that Rogers talked about in that interview: [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The folks at MSNBC are doing whatever they can to promote ObamaCare.
On Tuesday’s Martin Bashir show, MSNBC contributor and Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson actually said, “There will be millions of men who will rise to the occasion” and be grateful when they can now get Viagra (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Leading off a report on Monday's NBC Today, White House correspondent Peter Alexander skeptically observed: "The Obama administration says it met it's own goal of significantly improving the HealthCare.gov website, but that's the easy part. That's like kind of giving yourself a passing grade." At the end of segment, he noted insurance companies warning of the "logistical nightmare" caused by inaccurate information being entered into the ObamaCare database. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Despite such critical analysis of the health care law in the nearly 2-minute report, by Nightly News that evening, anchor Brian Williams reduced the news to a mere 28 seconds, emphasizing only the positive: "We have an update now on the HealthCare.gov website. It is now working better and faster, as the White House promised it would by now. But they say they know it is still far from perfect. By 5:30 this evening Eastern Time, the website had logged 750,000 visitors so far today. That's getting closer to that 800,000 daily user goal the rebooted site is supposed to be able to handle."