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A Case in Point of Alinsky-Style Politics and Governing: Gruber, Transparency, Taxes, and the Mandate

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the latest video making the rounds of a certain Dr. Jonathan Gruber, a man who was involved in crafting and passing Obamacare.  I have mentioned Gruber in the past, when he made remarks that had that distinctive eugenic smell about them.

Transcript (He talked fast in some parts, verify if you excerpt from this):

It’s just, you can’t do it, politically,  You just literally can not do it.  OK, transparent financing, unless that transparent financing–also transparent spending–I mean, this bill was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO [Congressional Budget Office] did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. OK? So it’s written to do that. In terms of risk-rated subsidies, if you had a law which said healthy people are going to pay in–you made explicit that healthy people pay in and sick people get money–it would not have passed. OK? Just as–lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, you know, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass. And you know, its a second best argument… Look, I wish Mark was right that we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not. So,  it’s kind of like his reporter story.  You know, yea, there’s things I wish we could change, but I’d rather have this law than not.

There was a time, when I was younger, that I had this view that the two political parties were essentially on the same quest, with equal levels of corruption and sincerity, but following from different principles, and I thought it was a basically tenable position to say that good men could sincerely differ.   As I’ve gotten older, I’ve read more and seen more, and I know now that the problem runs much deeper than this.  Namely, this:  one of the principles that the Dems openly acknowledge as good and virtuous is DECEPTION.

This doesn’t mean that the Republicans don’t lie.  They certainly do–and often.  But when they do it, they know they are engaging in a behavior that would disgust their base, which feels strongly about truthfulness.  To illustrate further, the Republicans have become the party representing certain values regarding sexuality, in particular chastity before marriage and faithfulness after marriage.  The Democrats, however, have a worldview that assumes that everyone is going to “do it like they do it on Discovery Channel” and well, that’s ok;  moreover, only the prudes carry about the private behavior of politicians.  So, if a Democrat is caught having a torrid affair, there is a collective yawn–that sort of thing is just par for the course.  If a Republican is caught having a torrid affair, the media goes on and on about it, and that Republican’s political career is in a precarious state… in large part, because the people that elected him in the first place cannot get over their disgust.

Similar to how the Republican base upholds chastity and faithfulness, they also uphold truth.  If a Republican is caught in a lie, it disgusts the Republican base, and anyone else who thinks that truth is a good thing.  But Democrat ideologues accept the Alinsky formula (as expressed in Rules for Radicals, for example) that the ends always justify the means, and deception and character assassination are not merely acceptable tools for gaining power and exercising it, but preferred methods.

Part of this stems from other elements of the Democrat worldview, which we see implied in the Gruber clip above.  For example, liberals tend to think that their fellow man is incapable of taking care of himself or making decisions for himself that really are in his own best interest.  Thus, it is necessary in some cases to tell people what they want to hear “for their own good” or “for the common good” even if what you tell them is a blatant lie and fabrication.  They really do think that the American voter is stupid, but they have sort of a soft spot for the average imbecile on the street, so they do what they can–despite the fact that in this case, Obamacare, if the American voter had been told the truth, they would have rejected it… would have rejected what was “in their own best interests” but they were too stupid to recognize.

I am not saying that all liberals and Democrats and Progressives similarly embrace a Machiavellian outlook.  Not at all.  As I implied above, there was a day when I myself had liberal and Democrat tendencies.  However, I did think that truth was important for its own sake.  (One turning point for me was the Clinton-Lewinsky affair)  It may be possible still to have and uphold liberal values free from the utilitarian machinations exhibited by the Democrat elites… but we are long past the point where we can entertain any hope that the Democrat Party will be able to promote them honestly and fairly, in the open, publicly, so that all Americans can decide for themselves if they agree with those principles.  The fact that these elites have to hide their views and values at all perhaps tells us all we need to know.

Unfortunately, just because we have ample justification for believing the opposite of whatever a given Democrat politicians says, it doesn’t follow that the Republicans can be trusted.   And that makes me sad, because eventually, when it is absolutely known to everyone that the rule of law no longer exists and absolutely known that our elected officials will not represent the values of those who elect them, attempting to resolve differences via elections will no longer seem viable.  It’s not going to be a pretty, and my fear is that the way things are proceeding, this day draws closer faster and faster.  But time will tell.


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