Healthcare

Politics of the possible?

Republican Washington, D.C., insiders have spent the past month wagging their fingers at Tea Party types and telling anyone who will listen that these people just don’t understand realpolitik and the "politics of the possible."

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'Best and brightest' coming to fix ObamaCare website? Uh oh.

Several years ago when I was teaching a profile-writing class at the University of Chicago, nearly all of my students look puzzled at my mention of the Pentagon Papers case of 1971.

Granted, it occurred before any of them were born.

I remembered that classroom experience when reading Monday of the urgent posting at the Department of Health and Human Services' website Sunday promising that HealthCare.gov would get better and that HHS (and presumably the president) are calling on “the best and the brightest” to get to work on quickly fixing the glitches and getting the website running smoothly.

Good luck with that. Monday's New York Times paraphrases “one specialist['s]” conclusion that “…as many as five million lines of software code may need to be rewritten before the Web site runs properly.”

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Obama wakes up

Apparently, a teleprompter somewhere alerted our 44th-least-engaged president that a crisis/opportunity was presenting itself and it was time for him to look up from the 16th tee and act presidential.

What other explanation could there be for President Obama’s sudden focus on the looming government slowdown?

The nation’s chief executive, who has not held a single meeting with Republicans on the 2014 budget over the past couple of weeks, is only marginally more culpable than Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who admitted that he hadn’t talked to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) once over the issue just a few short days ago.

Now, everyone is supposed to be impressed by Obama’s statement urging a short-term continuing resolution be passed to fund the government with a promise that issues will be negotiated in the future.

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Ignoring ObamaCare opportunity

Rahm Emanuel’s infamous quote, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that, it's an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before,” has never been more relevant than it is today when discussing ObamaCare.

House Republican leadership effectively gave up the fight to stop the law when their 2012 election plan failed, leaving them stuck with another four years of President Obama and two more of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

The mantra has turned to the almost whiny complaint that they only control one House and it is unfair to push them to do anything given their woeful position. If only the voters had voted for Mitt Romney and a gaggle of Republican Senate candidates, it could be all different, but they didn’t so the people will just have to live with ObamaCare.

It almost makes you wonder why this crew fought to lead the House Republicans again if they were just going to pout and take their marbles home.

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As Big Labor disowns ObamaCare, will Republicans own it?

While Congress was out on recess this August, the 40,000-member International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) quit the AFL-CIO over the group's acquiescence to President Obama over the perversely named Affordable Care Act (ACA), firing the first shot in the debate over what to do when the law inevitably collapses.

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