The press continues its disinterested fiddling while the royal mess known as Obamacare burns through money and exhausts the patience of those attempting any kind of oversight.
One of the more obvious examples of this is how the Washington Post's May 17 story on errors in calculating Obamacare subsidies has gone absolutely nowhere. About one-third of the 20 results returned in a Google News search on "healthcare subsidies" (not in quotes) at 11 p.m. ET Friday evening were partial reprints or rewrites of the original story by WaPo reporters Amy Goldstein and Sandhya Somashekhar. Most of the remaining results were from center-right outlets, while a few came from medical sites. The results didn't change much when searching on "health care" instead of "healthcare." What the WaPo pair reported is a breathtaking cacophony of incompetence which, as Heritage noted last year, won't even "solve" itself when Obamacare enrollees file their 2014 tax returns. Goldstein and Somashekhar also missed an opportunity to make a fundamental point, which is that everyone who has enrolled has some exposure.
It’s the bland leading the bland as Obamacare enrollment (sort of) ends. The front page of Monday’s Washington Post carries the headline “New fronts in health battle: Challenges after sign-up milestone.” (Yawn.) The pull quote inside on A-2 is “The unresolved issues mean it is far too soon to know how President Obama’s signature domestic achievement will turn out.”
In that case, why use the word “achievement”? Did they describe the Iraq War as Bush's "signature achievement"? In doing so, the Post sounds just like Obama adviser David Plouffe, whom they quoted from ABC saying “The law’s working” and it’s a “seminal achievement.” The Post account left out Bill Kristol’s response on ABC that Democrats aren’t saying “the law’s working” on the campaign trail.
Some 47 percent of uninsured Americans between the ages of 18 and 64 are now unfavorable towards ObamaCare, the highest negative marks among that demographic since May 2012, according to a survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation. That number could be considerably higher as the margin of error is plus/minus 8 percentage points.
Nevertheless, reporting on the newly-released Kaiser survey, the Washington Post's Sandhya Somashekhar buried those statistics towards the end of her 11-paragraph page A4 story, while spinning the news as largely a PR challenge for the Obama administration and ObamaCare backers on the Left (emphasis mine):
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):
The Washington Post reported Wednesday that President Obama “sought to redirect some of the political blame for the botched rollout of the federal health insurance exchange to Republicans, characterizing GOP lawmakers as rooting for the law’s failure.” But Post reporters Philip Rucker and Sandhya Somashekhar never found a Republican to rebut. Everyone quoted in the story was a member of Team Obama.
“One of the problems we’ve had is one side of Capitol Hill is invested in failure,” Obama said at the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council meeting in Washington. Obama echoed Rush Limbaugh, who said during the Iraq War in the Bush years that Sen. Harry Reid and other Democrats were “invested in defeat.” Obama could blame a “toxic” political atmosphere, and somehow that didn’t include anything he said or any of his lies about Obamacare:
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:
Every now and then a liberal newspaper can pleasantly surprise us. Today is one of those days, although as I explain later, our praise is qualified. In a 27-paragraph story in Monday's edition, staffers Sandhya Somashekhar and Lena Sun noted a recent sting video by pro-life group Live Action wherein Washington, D.C. abortionist Cesare Santangelo admitted that "in the unlikely event that an abortion resulted in a live birth, 'we wouldn't help it.'"
"[T]echnically, you know, legally, we would be obligated to help it, you know, to survive, but it probably wouldn't," Santangelo told the 24-week pregnant woman in the Live Action video. In a subsequent interview with the Post, Santangelo sought to spin what folks could see on the hidden camera expose.
Yesterday the pro-life activists at Live Action released a video of a sting operation they conducted at a Planned Parenthood office in New Jersey. The video clearly shows the office manager giving counsel to a couple posing as pimp and prostitute who claimed to have minors employed as prostitutes, some from out of the country.
Yet despite the shocking content of the video, neither ABC, NBC, nor CBS covered the story in their February 1 evening news programs. Likewise the February 2 "Good Morning America," "Today," and "CBS Early Show" also failed to cover the story.
Even the Washington Post is acknowledging the liberal Jon Stewart-Stephen Colbert rally is being adopted by leftists and Democrats as their rally. The headline in Sunday's news section was “For liberal groups, it's not just for laughs.” Washington Post reporter Sandhya Somashekhar found that the “million moderates march” lingo isn't going to match what's on the ground:
But some liberal groups are doing their best to adopt the rally as their own. Democratic clubs from colleges across the country are sending buses to the event, offering a seat in exchange for a few hours of volunteer time. President Obama, who seemed to talk up the rally at an event last month, is expected to appear on Stewart's "The Daily Show" just a few days before.
And when the Huffington Post's Arianna Huffington announced on the show that she would be offering free transportation to thousands of takers from New York City, she tried to cast herself and Stewart as collaborators in the progressive movement. "You work on the message," she told him. "I'll work on the logistics."
Herndon officials are considering regulations to make the community inhospitable to day laborers, who have returned to sidewalks and street corners since the town shuttered a controversial job center for the mostly Hispanic workers last year.
Somashekhar later added that the new measures, including a "permitting process for homeowners to rent out rooms" are "designed to make life difficult for day laborers." The reporter then conceded that Herndon leaders are reacting to constituent complaints have about loitering day laborers: