The following is an excerpt from OpinionJournal.com’s “Best of the Web” written by the editor, James Taranto.
It’s Always in the Last Place You Look
“Frank Bruni Found Courtney Love’s iPhone in a Cab”–headline, New York magazine website, Nov. 21
The Dream That Won’t Die
Peter Beinart of the Daily Beast warns the Democratic Party that “if Obamacare never gets fixed, it might just sour the single best relationship the Democratic Party has: its love affair with the young.” The conditional clause seems unnecessary given that ObamaCare’s proper operation centers on ripping off the young.
But Beinart, who was formerly young himself, thinks that young voters may be losing their faith in government as they are exposed to the reality of it. We’d say stop the presses if the Beast had presses.
Beinart, however, doesn’t think the Dems’ loss will be the Republicans’ gain: “Among millennials, the Republican Party’s brand remains horrendous. . . . More fundamentally, few millennials embrace the right’s basic contention that a larger welfare state threatens their freedom and that an unregulated free market will solve their economic woes.” Of course, when you put it that way, who does?
So where will these young voters go? Beinart answers with this blast from the past:
Instead of re-aligning young people, the Obamacare debacle is more likely to de-align them. It validates the Occupy movement, which took its grievances directly to Wall Street because it lacked any faith that Washington could redress them. A couple of months ago, I suggested that the frustrations that Occupy voiced would eventually find their way into presidential politics . . .
We dimly recall that something called “the Occupy movement” was all the rage among middle-aged lefty columnists some years ago. But are young voters even old enough to remember it?
Fun With ObamaCare
[Last] week we collect[ed] more ObamaCare material than we can use, so we thought we’d do an amusing Friday roundup. First up is this nearly impenetrable paragraph from an analytical blog post by the Washington Post’s Juliet Eilperin and Scott Wilson:
Obama’s problem with messaging is not the only consequence of a schedule crowded with ceremonial events and the delicate politics of Iran’s nuclear program. He also faces a problem with consistency.
What the hell does that even mean? Here’s our best guess: Obama lies a lot, and his excuse is that he’s busy.
Then we have this colicky lead to a post by Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times, a die-hard ObamaCare apologist:
You may have heard, unless you’ve been living under a rock, that the Affordable Care Act isn’t perfect. Programs that aim to restructure one-sixth of the U.S. economy rarely are at the outset, and that’s even more true when their introduction is accompanied by determined efforts by some politicians in some states to make them fail.
As far as we can tell, the set of “programs that aim to restructure one-sixth of the U.S. economy” consists of one member.
The Post’s Greg Sargent–we like to think of him as “Ezra Klein, junior grade,” which we suppose is a promotion–has a post titled “Why ObamaCare Could Still Succeed.” We were about to file this under “Shortest Books Ever Written,” but we laughed out loud at this assertion:
If the federal website is mostly operational by the end of the month, it’s likely we’ll see amassive flood of advertising from insurance companies selling new plans over the exchanges.
Even funnier than Sargent’s gargantuan “if” is his touching faith in the power of insurance company advertising. Meanwhile in the real world–well, in South Dakota, anyway–AdAge reports that Wellmark, a private health insurer, is running ads selling off-exchange policies by making fun of ObamaCare’s failures.
And FoxNews.com reports today that “newly released emails between top Obama administration tech officials are shedding more light on the severity of the concerns that were raised before the disastrous rollout of the ObamaCare website”:
In a Sept. 26 email to top CMS officials including HealthCare.gov project manager Henry Chao, Akhtar Zaman from the CMS Office of Information Services gave a grim report after three days of performance and stress tests on the website. He cited numerous instances where tests were unsuccessful.
“The results are not good and not consistent at all,” Zaman wrote.
Chao responded to this report by emailing a stern warning to CMS staffers.
“I DO NOT WANT A REPEAT OF WHAT HAPPENED NEAR THE END OF DECEMBER 2005 WHERE MEDICARE.GOV HAD A MELTDOWN (THIS IS TO GET YOUR ATTENTION IF I DIDN’T HAVE IT ALREADY),” he said.
Now we understand why it went so horribly wrong. If you send emails in all caps, the recipient will assume you’re a nut and ignore them. EVERYBODY KNOWS THAT!!
For more “Best of the Web” click here and look for the “Best of the Web Today” link in the middle column below “Today’s Columnists.”