November 15, 2013

The NYT acknowledges Obama's in trouble by reminding us that Bush was really, really bad. Remember?!!

At the website front page the teaser headline  — which is also the headline in the paper version — is:  "As Troubles Pile Up, a Crisis of Confidence for Obama." But if you click to the article, the headline becomes "Health Law Rollout’s Stumbles Draw Parallels to Bush’s Hurricane Response."

I can think of a whole bunch of non-parallels:

1. Bush's political party didn't design and enact Hurricane Katrina.

2. Bush didn't have 5 years to craft his response to the hurricane.

3. Bush didn't have the power to redesign the hurricane as he designed his response to it.

4. The Republican Bush believed he could not simply bully past the Democratic Mayor of New Orleans and the Democratic Governor of Louisiana and impose a federal solution, but the Democrat Obama and his party in Congress aggressively and voluntarily took over an area of policy that might have been left to the states.

5. The media were ready to slam Bush long and hard for everything — making big scandals out of things that, done by Obama, would have been forgotten a week later (what are the Valerie Plame-level screwups of Obama's?) — but the media have bent over backwards for years to help make Obama look good and to bury or never even uncover all of his lies and misdeeds.

6. If Bush experienced a disaster like the rollout of Obamacare, the NYT wouldn't use its front page to remind us of something Bill Clinton did that looked bad.

But let's check out the asserted parallels in that NYT article by Michael D. Shear:
The disastrous rollout of his health care law not only threatens the rest of his agenda but also raises questions about his competence in the same way that the Bush administration’s botched response to Hurricane Katrina undermined any semblance of Republican efficiency.

But unlike Mr. Bush, who faced confrontational but occasionally cooperative Democrats, Mr. Obama is battling a Republican opposition that has refused to open the door to any legislative fixes to the health care law and has blocked him at virtually every turn. 
Oh, well, that's another nonparallel. Republicans oppose Obama, unlike those Democrats who sometimes helped Bush. And the NYT reinforces my point #5 (above).

But think about it this way, NYT. What if Bush and the Republicans had created the hurricane, and the Democrats adamantly believed it would be better not to have a hurricane? Would the Democrats have been "occasionally cooperative" to Republicans who smugly announced that they won the election and they've been wanting this hurricane for 100 years and canceling the hurricane was not an option?
Republicans readily made the Hurricane Katrina comparison. 
Oh? Note the wording. It doesn't say that important Republicans were bringing up Katrina on their own. I suspect that the journalist, Shear, asked various Republicans to talk about Bush and Katrina and some of them did.
“The echoes to the fall of 2005 are really eerie,” said Peter D. Feaver, a top national security official in Mr. Bush’s second term. “Katrina, which is shorthand for bungled administration policy, matches to the rollout of the website.” 
Okay, so Shear got Feaver to put a name on the assertion that Republicans made the comparison. No other Republican is named. Shear moves on to Obama's "top aides" and tells us — here's my point #5 again —  that they stressed how unlike Katrina it is, since "Mr. Obama is struggling to extend health care to millions of people who do not have it. Those are very different issues."

I agree. The health care screwup isn't a natural disaster. Obama and the Democrats made their own disaster, stepping up to do something they should have known they weren't going to be able to do well, and they lied about what they were doing to get it passed.

And yet they meant well. They wanted to help people. Unlike Bush, who — what? — asked for that hurricane?

ADDED: My point #4, above, draws from this passage in Bush's "Decision Points" (previously blogged here):
If I invoked the Insurrection Act against [Governor Blanco's] wishes, the world would see a male Republican president usurping the authority of a female Democratic governor by declaring an insurrection in a largely African American city. That left me in a tough position. That would arouse controversy anywhere. To do so in the Deep South, where there had been centuries of states' rights tensions, could unleash holy hell.
And the NYT would have framed it that way (which is my point #5).

136 comments:

St. George said...

Preach it, sistah!

rehajm said...

!!!!APPLAUSE!!!!

Curious George said...

Look, the NYT is preaching to their own psycho choir. Most of America knows what a train wreck this is. And they know exactly who is responsible. Even many of the choir knows, like the NYT surely must. Their DNA requires they spin it.

I have not seen one FB post from a lib friend regarding Obamacare. It's as if it doesn't exist.

Rusty said...

have not seen one FB post from a lib friend regarding Obamacare. It's as if it doesn't exist.

Odd that. Isn't it.

My lib FB friends have long ago unfriended me. It seems they don't like reasoned debate.

Freeman Hunt said...

I have a Facebook friend who posted that she was tired of people complaining about Obamacare. Ha!

Matthew Sablan said...

Republicans have met Obama half way, or more, on many, many issues. Just like Democrats supported the war in Iraq with Bush much of the time.

The ACA, though, is too much, too far.

Matthew Sablan said...

I keep my Facebook politicking to a minimum, usually solely for egregious things I think EVERYONE should approve of or dislike.

Imagine my surprise the number of people who disapproved of any mention of the illegality of the IRS targeting methods (I used to work for Tax Analysts here in VA, so tax law and the IRS are actual interests of mine that, I think, most people don't share.)

Curious George said...

"Rusty said...

My lib FB friends have long ago unfriended me. It seems they don't like reasoned debate."

That too, although for most I can see their posts. It starts with my posting a counter. And then friend after friend offering nothing more than name calling. Libs cannot survive outside their echo bubble. Sad.

C Stanley said...

Iraq would have been a better analogy.

betamax3000 said...

In Regard to Ann's Six Points:

I Feel a Seventh Point Must Be Added. I Do Not Know What That Point Is, But Inevitably Someone Will Find It.

I Have Seen How These Things Work.

Clyde said...

It used to just be George W. Bush on those "Miss Me Yet?" billboards. I suspect it won't be long until we're seeing "Miss Me Yet?" billboards with Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon. Obama had better be grateful that nobody remembers what James Buchanan looked like.

betamax3000 said...

Found It.

7. Amanda McCracken Has Taken Thirty-Five Years To Roll Out Her Virginity Program, and Still Has Yet to Find the First Acceptable Enrollee. Is This Akin to a Natural Disaster, or to a Botched Government Birth-Control Distribution Program?

Matthew Sablan said...

"Iraq would have been a better analogy."

-- No it wouldn't; most Democrats fully supported Iraq until election time.

Henry said...

Beautiful done.

The Althouse dissection lays bare the new narrative: that the problems with Obamacare aren't due to its structural perversities, but to "bungled rollout."

This article also stands as an example of how not to learn about Obamacare. Ignore any article that discusses its politics. The political articles are chaff. The political reporters are mayflies. Focus on the actual administration of the actual law by the actual administration.

Clyde said...

And why, oh why, should the Republicans work with Obama on Obamacare, which he and the Democrats rammed down America's throat without a single Republican vote? It's a complete and utter disaster, and it's all theirs. Own it, bitches!

madAsHell said...

I'm sorry.
I obama'd.
I'll make it up to you.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Bush didn't tell us that Katrina was better for Louisiana than the crappy state they had.

C Stanley said...

"Iraq would have been a better analogy."

-- No it wouldn't; most Democrats fully supported Iraq until election time.


That's exactly why it is a useful analogy though. If a president takes on a huge and consequential initiative, ostensibly selling it politically with untruths, should his opponents go along?

If the two situations are compared and contrasted, there are many similarities and some differences. A significant difference is the choice of the opposing party to buy in, or not. The GOP can be seen as making the right choice in this instance (not that the NYT would ever portray it that way.)

Bob Boyd said...

@betamax3000

Its akin to a broken dyke.

moistwilly said...

Where's Inga? MIA.

betamax3000 said...

Re: "I can think of a whole bunch of non-parallels"

Myself, I Can Think of a Whole Bunch of Nonpareils: Jujubes are the Obvious First Example.

betamax3000 said...

That Should have Been "Non-Nonpariels". I Blame Katrina. And the Waves.

Hagar said...

What was it in "The Man Who Killed Liberty Valance"? When the legend overtakes the truth, print the legend?

A medical emergency response team from the University Hospital and the Bernalillo Co. sheriff with 20 deputies left Albuquerque and headed for New Orleans 3 days before Katrina made landfall to help out as requested by FEMA.
If that was true for Albuquerque, 1200 miles away, it surely was true for other cities and states as well.

The federal assistance for New Orleans and the other Gulf Coast areas affected by Katrina, was in fact the largest and most effective area emergency aid operation in U.S. histoy.

Democrats may argue that it still was not enough, but that it was feeble or botched as compared by emergency aid operations conducted by previous administrations, simply is not true.

betamax3000 said...

How Obama is Like Confectioneries.
How Obama is Not Like Confectioneries.

Obama: Nonpariel or Jujube?

Henry said...

I just want to hear Mr. Obama say:

"Heck of a job, me."

Bob Loblaw said...

Hagar, good point. The biggest botch of Katrina was much of the reporting by the established media.

In fact, the biggest parallel I can see between OCare and Katrina is a press whose initial reports are wildly off-base.

Hagar said...

The Louisiana State government's and certainly the New Orleans city government's management responses were pathetic, but Brownie did indeed do a "Heck of a job!"

Freder Frederson said...

Republicans have met Obama half way, or more, on many, many issues.

Really? Please provide some examples.

betamax3000 said...

Sleight-of-Hand by the NYT: We Will Change the Conversation to ObamaCare Vs Katrina Rather than ObamaCare Vs the People. As Several Here Have Mentioned, the Next will Probably Be ObamaCare vs Iraq, Which Will Lead to Every Obama Gimmick Heralded as: Is This ObamaCare's 'Petraeus' Surge?

damikesc said...

Did he ignore that the GOP was called terrorists for proposing the EXACT SAME DAMNED THING OBAMA IS FUCKING DOING?

Did that dipshit forget that?

Republicans should do literally nothing. Say that they were accused of being terrorists when they tried to do what Obama did so they aren't going to participate with somebody so fundamentally unserious and so prone to slander as our Resident is.

And why, oh why, should the Republicans work with Obama on Obamacare, which he and the Democrats rammed down America's throat without a single Republican vote?

As has been pointed out repeatedly, if it was successful, would Obama be seeking to share the credit with the GOP?

Why the hell should they accept any semblance of the blame for this abortion?

Democrats may argue that it still was not enough, but that it was feeble or botched as compared by emergency aid operations conducted by previous administrations, simply is not true.

Thing is, the response was botched horribly...

...by the state of LA and the city of New Orleans. Republicans didn't run either at the time.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"The biggest botch of Katrina was much of the reporting by the established media."

I remember seeing a "five years after" retrospective where journalists were discussing what they did right and what they did wrong.

Unsurprisingly, they were awed by there own awesomeness.

chuckunderscore said...

They did not 'mean well', Anne. They simply meant to consume 1/6 of the economy into the federal government and, with it, to perpetuate Democratic party rule. They meant the opposite of 'well'.

betamax3000 said...

With the Kennedy Assassination's Big Fifty Comes Up the NYT Can Sidestep to How Obamacare Fulfills JFK's Vision. Obama Will Give a Speech Saying That Getting a Man to the Moon Was Hard Work, and There Were Many Problems Encountered Along the Way But We Made It: With ObamaCare He Will Parallel the Problems, then Proclaim That By the End of the Decade Every American Will Have Health Care. Lingering Pause as He Looks Skyward: Hold Pose for NYT Photographers.

MadisonMan said...

Waitaminute!

How do you know that Bush and the Republicans didn't design and enact/roll out Katrina. It was a weather modification experiment that went horribly awry and it all started with -- wait for it -- chemtrails.

The NYTimes is laughably transparent in this article. I wonder why they didn't compare Obama's troubles to, say, Clinton's, just to remind us of that fun time in history.

rcommal said...

Oh, well done, Althouse. Bravo!!!!

mishu said...

"This hurricane is coming. However, if you like your weather the way it is, you can keep your weather."

jacksonjay said...

Republicans have met Obama half way, or more, on many, many issues.

Matters foreign:

Arms control with Russia
Iraq
Afghanistan
Libya
Syria

Matters domestic: (not so much)

Sequester
Increased taxes (little bit more) on "millionaires and billionaires"

Xmas said...

It's also amazing that reporters aren't pointing out that the Republicans were willing to fall on the sword of bad publicity to delay the implementation of the individual mandate.

45 days ago, the Republicans offered Obama and his team an out on this coming debacle. 45 days ago, insurance companies could have scrambled to keep the old policies available. 45 days ago the Republicans were evil, racists, elitist scum who hated the poor and the sick. 45 days ago, a smart, informed and capable President would have taken the offer from the Republicans, wrangled MORE concessions from them while simultaneously saving himself and his whole party from this disaster.

The main difference between Bush and Obama is that Bush surrounded himself with people that were more knowledgeable and more capable of doing their jobs than himself. Bush's advisers are still praised or treated like boogeymen: Rumsfeld, Cheney, Rice, Powell, Rove. 5 years later, and we still know their names. Who does Obama have in those ranks, Rahm "Naked Confrontation in the Shower" Emanuel and...

BDNYC said...

I read that article this morning and had to stifle my dual urges to laugh and vomit.

BDNYC said...

I read that article this morning and had to stifle my dual urges to laugh and vomit.

betamax3000 said...

Knowing what We Know Now, I Believe if the Election Were Held Again Obama Would Still Win. Millions Can Lose Their Coverage and Still Not Be Enough Votes to Outweigh the Insulated. The Upper Jaw of the Liberal Rich Will Always Clamp with Equal Pressure to the Lower Jaw of the Dependent and Subsidized: the Middle is Simply Food to Be Consumed and Excreted.

Katrina: I'm Walking on Sunshine.

Meade said...

ACA -- The Affordable Catastrophe Act.

Hammond X Gritzkofe said...

Thank you, Prof. A. Very well put.

Hagar said...

The Democrats also claim that the stingy Bush Administration did not appropriate sufficient money for reconstruction after Katrina.

However, last I read about it, there still is a rather large amount of unspent Katrina funds in the Fedearl budget, even after Obama's "stimulus" and all.

How come?

Basil said...

I, for one, am mighty impressed with the Professor's explicit and public recognition of the nature of the left's propaganda machine and her willingness to blog about it.

However, I fear that someday soon we will read a post about the cold shoulders she is getting up at the ole' Law School from her fellow professors. Actually surprised the lefty social "shaming" hasn't already started against her.

madAsHell said...

ACA -- The Affordable Catastrophe Act.

The Avoidable Catastrophe Act.
It's another Obama unforced error.

betamax3000 said...

From an Earlier Althouse Post:

"Millions feel the pain and the anger as the big machine grinds into motion and pulls them in... ...Once Obamacare is in motion and everybody's in and the screaming at the intake point has given way to muffled groaning from inside the grinding machinery..."

While Government-as-Machinery Can Be Apt, it Also Implies a Certain Soullessness, Action Independent of Thought. I Prefer the Government-as-Beast: the President, the Congress, the IRS, EPA, NSA, etc etc, All Acting as Organs Out to protect Their Functions, Directed By Both Voluntary and Involuntary Actions. It Chooses What to Consume, and Places its "Intake" Appropriately. Again: Upper Jaw, Lower Jaw, Grind, Excrete.

Levi Starks said...

I'm sorry to have to tell you this Ann,
But it's not fixable.
And by "it",
I mean any of it....

Michael said...

Professor. This is a really excellent deconstruction of the Times' piece. Nice.

Michael said...

Professor. This is a really excellent deconstruction of the Times' piece. Nice.

Peter said...

OK, the New York Times is so far gone that its writers no longer realize they're writing propaganda. Even though those of us on the outside often see the NYT as little more than Sulzberger'Sandbox.

But as a matter of law, does POTUS have the constitutional authority to declare that it's now lawful for insurance companies to offer non-compliant policies for another year? Or does this actually require that he sign a bill passed by both houses of Congress (etc.)? And if he lacks this authority, is there any way anyone would have standing to sue?

Presidents have almost always pushed their authority as far as possible, and then some. But is this continuing executive re-writing of legislation somehow different?

CWJ said...

Heck of a job, AA!

betamax3000 said...

Also: A Beast Can Act Out of Malice. Cat to Mouse: I Won.

betamax3000 said...

Obamacare: There is No Way One Lone Person Could Possibly Do This. There is Obviously a Second Gunman, Maybe Three.

Coincidentally, Pelosi and Reid Were Seen on the Grassy Knoll.

Kelly said...

The media coverage on Katrina was criminal. How many rapes were there at the dome?? None, although that didn't stop the hysterical reporting. There was looting for electronics in NO, in the Philippines the looting is for food and water.

It's often said that when a President fails at domestic policy or becomes a lame duck they turn to foreign policy. Clearly Obama is the lamest of ducks, but does the world really deserve his attentions??? They loved him so much that he received foreign donations during his first campaign, maybe they do deserve his undivided attention.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

Many thanks, Professor, for illuminating the corrosive mind-rot at the NYT. The sooner it follows the sale of Newsweek, the better - perhaps Jeff Bezos would like to buy another propaganda organization.

El Pollo Raylan said...

All very good until the very last line:

And yet they meant well. They wanted to help people. Unlike Bush, who — what? — asked for that hurricane?

Well yes, Bush et al. sort of did ask for the hurricane, being oil proponents. Tell me that isn't core lefty thinking these days.

Meade said...

The Avoidable Catastrophe Act.

Very good!

Q: How is Obamacare just like Hurricane Katrina?
A: Both were Acts of God.

JOB said...

Of course we all know that Bush's endgame was to have a one-weather system the whole time.

JOB

Curious George said...

You know you are truly fucked when Bill Clinton thinks that the TRUTH is the only way out.

Michael K said...

One other difference is that FEMA did no better with the storm last year in New Jersey.

Michael K said...

" Blogger C Stanley said...

Iraq would have been a better analogy."

No, the Democrats all voted for Iraq.

Cedarford said...

Clyde said...
It used to just be George W. Bush on those "Miss Me Yet?" billboards. I suspect it won't be long until we're seeing "Miss Me Yet?" billboards with Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon.
======================
Posters of Nixon might only confuse people. Older people think of Nixon as a SOB, but an SOB that was competent, loved his country, and got a lot of good things done. Younger people are inclined to think of Nixon as history and have a hard time getting why Nixon resigned while other Presidents covered up bigger things.

Bush II, Buchanan, Carter, Obama are in a different category. Presidents who really fucked things up.

Besides, I never got why the Bush II posters went up...shouldn't that be for Presidents the voters really miss not having the same quality in office today....like Reagan and Clinton?? When things were competently managed and America was prospering and adding jobs???

Mingus Jerry said...

Did George Bush call the previous LA storms "substandard?"

David-2 said...

Hagar is right. Katrina was a disaster for Bush only because the media and Democrats made it so, and the Republicans, as usual, were powerless to stop it (plus they had Brownie on their side).

The US Navy prepared in advance and was ready offshore of New Orleans to move in as soon as the hurricane moved out. They arrived in force well within the 3 days that was the well known response time for the federal government in disasters. All governments at all levels knew - or were supposed to know - of that three day response time. So a non-parallel is that in Katrina, the Federal government worked as planned.

But there is a parallel to be found.

Remember that when Democrat Louisiana governor wouldn't officially call in the feds Bush called her directly to beg to be allowed to intervene. She refused for political reasons. Just like the Obama and the Democrats, before the rollout of the website, refused to delay it for political reasons

Hari said...

Suppose the Republicans had been willing to work with the Obama on this. What exactly might they have done?

How did the Republicans screw up the development of the website? How did the Republicans cause or fail to prevent the canceled policies?

Both of these problems were caused entirely by the administration's execution of the law.

The one thing the Republicans did offer/demand--a one year delay of the law--would have been the best possible thing that could have happened to Obama.

I think we can be certain that had the Democrats offered Bush a one-year delay of Katrina, he would have taken it.

tim in vermont said...

Ann,
Do you have memories of reading the NYT as straight news? I have been reading it the way Russians read Pravda as long as I can remember. That is to say: "If they are saying this, it must mean that."

mrs. e said...

In reference to the first part of #6 -the rollout of Medicare Part D had a lot of similar issues - website, prescriptions lost, early confusion. The comparison should have been here.

The only parallel I can see is a systemic takedown of a president's legacy - a negative branding, if you will. When things go well, those in-charge take the credit; when it goes poorly, the blame. It's what we do.

As a country, we should have had a better response to Katrina. Healthcare, as well. Politics got in the way of both.

EDH said...

As I said in the previous thread, Republicans should insist that the "knowledgeable and competent" Hillary lead any attempt to save Obamacare as a condition of their support.

Stourley Kracklite said...

I'd love to know the source for the implication that Democrats impeded federal relief for Hurricane Katrina. Thank you!

Hagar said...

@Michael K,

I think a good argument could be made that FEMA did less well with last year's storm in New Jersey than it did with Katrina in 2005.

And last year's storm was not as bad, and New Jersey is right there in the Government's back yard, so to speak. All kinds of transportation facilities, etc., available, and a cooperative Governor too.

Hagar said...

You can re-write history, as the Democrats have done with the Kennedy "Camelot" and the Bush administrations, but I don't think you can get away with re-writing the current reality forever.

RecChief said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matthew Sablan said...

Let's not forget the GOP's willingness to work with Obama on storm responses, such as Sandy, even when lots of the money got wasted/spent in unrelated ways.

RecChief said...

Feaver was a national security official. what does he know about disaster response. maybe he knows quite a bit, but it looks like he was the only former official willing to make a comparison to Katrina, but in a different area of expertise.

A spot on analysis, Althouse.

YoungHegelian said...

"It's Chinatown, Perfesser."

tim in vermont said...

"I'd love to know the source for the implication that Democrats impeded federal relief for Hurricane Katrina. "

Not national Democrats, but local elected officials who were overwhelmingly Democrat.

Skeptical Voter said...

Well you see Katrina wasn't exactly a "man caused disaster"--heck it wasn't even a Pelosi Reid caused disaster. So I fail to see the NYT's parallel here.

AJ Lynch said...

Won't anyone defend Obama's incompetence? Bueller? Somefeller? Anyone?

Rusty said...

Meade said...
ACA -- The Affordable Catastrophe Act.

Alas, Mr. Meade, no catastrophe is affordable.

Rusty said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cubanbob said...

There is the Democrat Alternative Universe and then there is the universe we live in. Occasionally I read the NYT to see whats going on in The Democrat Alternative Universe. Tim in VT is right. One simply needs to read the NYT the same way Russians read Pravda.

The new talking points from the left is that since the ACA is a disaster we need to further double down on stupid and go straight to Single Payer. Naturally when those evil, mercenary kulak doctors refuse to get onboard they will need to be re-educated. Or liquidated and replaced by witch doctors.

cubanbob said...

There is the Democrat Alternative Universe and then there is the universe we live in. Occasionally I read the NYT to see whats going on in The Democrat Alternative Universe. Tim in VT is right. One simply needs to read the NYT the same way Russians read Pravda.

The new talking points from the left is that since the ACA is a disaster we need to further double down on stupid and go straight to Single Payer. Naturally when those evil, mercenary kulak doctors refuse to get onboard they will need to be re-educated. Or liquidated and replaced by witch doctors.

jacksonjay said...

NYT Editorial Board - "misspoke"

NYT reporters - "incorrect promise"

normal people - "LIED"

MayBee said...

Excellent.

Michael K said...

"Remember that when Democrat Louisiana governor wouldn't officially call in the feds Bush called her directly to beg to be allowed to intervene. She refused for political reasons. Just like the Obama and the Democrats, before the rollout of the website, refused to delay it for political reasons"

I flew into New Orleans the year before, just as Hurricane Ivan swerved east and missed city. It was the next day. I saw no evidence of ANY preparation; no boarded windows, no barricades, nothing. I was going to the College of Surgeons meeting and we didn't know if it would be cancelled until that day.

I was not surprised at the effects of Katrina on New Orleans.

Matthew Sablan said...

Decision Points should really be required reading for people wanting to discuss the Bush Presidency. The insights there into things, especially Katrina, were eye opening for me, and I was generally supportive of him to begin with.

alan markus said...

I have not seen one FB post from a lib friend regarding Obamacare

Over at OFA's Obamacare Facebook site, the pro-Obamacare folk's posts are sounding as unhinged & incoherent as most of the anti-Obamacare posters. They are grasping at straws trying to defend Obamacare. The only pro-Obama comments that are articulate are the pasted in "I enrolled on the exchange and now I have insurance for $140 a month, Thank you Obamacare!" types of posts.

As I recall, a few days after the exchange opened Inga pasted a few of them in here - she had several FB friends that allegedly got Obamacare.

MayBee said...

There is kind of one comparison. In the days leading up to Katrina, people were told to evacuate. Those who wouldn't evacuate were told they could go to the Superdome. There would not be food provided, and they feared the power might go out and the water might come into the building. But still, they reasoned, people would be kept alive and for that they would be grateful.

Then the storm hit, and NO looked like the hit wasn't so bad.....until the levy broke. Expel at the Super Dome were not just happy to be alive. People at their homes were not chagrined they had not made safety preparations. They were all desperate and pissed that things weren't better than they were.
And the government wasn't sure how to respond, because their plan had involved a relatively small number of people just being grateful to be alive. The idea that people would put up with something awful because it was better than what could have been, was a nonstarter.

And so Obamacare. They were not counting on people (a statistical minority) to be pissed. What looked on paper like a manageable number turned out to be an unbearable number in reality. They were hoping those people could be convinced their new insurance was going to protect them in a way much better than what might have been with their old policies.

It was another case of theoretical hardship seeming so much more bearable when it was all still theoretical.

alan markus said...

Notice how much Bush is relied upon to prop up Obama - that's always the fallback, compare him to Bush, never to better presidents.

The election of 2008 was really Obama versus Palin.

tim in vermont said...

It is all about the hoarders. Those in good health were hoarding that health, and those responsible enough to buy insurance, even when not paid for by employers, well, they were hoarding their responsibility. No system can survive these nefarious hoarders! What did you expect?

Matthew Sablan said...

Another difference: We have whole museum displays dedicated to the failure that was the response to Katrina.

I don't think we'll get any of those for the ACA.

MayBee said...

Oh and the idea that Republicans had done nothing to try to fix the law is a lie. It's just that everything they did was labeled as political or obstructive (is that a word)?
They tried to change the grandfather clause, for heavens sake. Did nobody listen to Ted Cruz's "filibuster"? He gave a lot of really good warnings.

AMDG said...

Nail head struck.

B said...

Wasn't more than a week or so ago that one of the marching morons that trolls here - Somefella I think - was telling us how the wicked smart people successful all read the NYT. His position was that conservatives did not and so proved that they weren't either smart or informed.

Leaving aside the fact that Somefella is an idiot, the NYT article is nothing more than a deflection to stroke those wicked smart liberal readers who may be getting a little disturbed about being lied to by Obama and then deceived by the NYT.

There is no cure for smug though. This will work with the Somefella types. The analogy to Katrina will give them an out that allows them to fall back into the 'but, but, when the republicans...it was worse' mode rather than seriously examine how they were duped.

Paul Hogue said...

And the NYT would have framed it that way (which is my point #5).

Bingo!

Crunchy Frog said...

The Obamacare rollout has been about as successful as Apollo 1.

There's your parallel.

William Chadwick said...

Bush is the "liberals'" Arthur. (And by "liberals" I mean of course "tax-happy, coercion-addicted, State-fellating power junkies.") No, not King Arthur. When I was a geeky, out-of-it kid, there was a boy named Arthur who was even geekier and more out-of-it than I was. I used to make fun of Arthur to draw the other kids' attention away from me, so the other kids wouldn't pick on and ridicule me. (I'm not proud of this, but kid-dom is a jungle.) No matter how stupid their policies and how much those policies screw up America, "liberals" can always point to the 43rd POTUS and shout "BOOOSHH!" In other words, "Don't look at what jackasses we are--look at that dummy Bush!"

The flaw in my Arthur analogy is that while "liberals" (even though they believe buncombe and
malarkey even the banjo-playing kid in DELIVERANCE would be too smart to fall for ) think that, somehow, they are still smarter than Bush. I've never seen any evidence of this.

William Chadwick said...

Bush is the "liberals'" Arthur. (And by "liberals" I mean of course "tax-happy, coercion-addicted, State-fellating power junkies.") No, not King Arthur. When I was a geeky, out-of-it kid, there was a boy named Arthur who was even geekier and more out-of-it than I was. I used to make fun of Arthur to draw the other kids' attention away from me, so the other kids wouldn't pick on and ridicule me. (I'm not proud of this, but kid-dom is a jungle.) No matter how stupid their policies and how much those policies screw up America, "liberals" can always point to the 43rd POTUS and shout "BOOOSHH!" In other words, "Don't look at what jackasses we are--look at that dummy Bush!"

The flaw in my Arthur analogy is that while "liberals" (even though they believe buncombe and
malarkey even the banjo-playing kid in DELIVERANCE would be too smart to fall for ) think that, somehow, they are still smarter than Bush. I've never seen any evidence of this.

El Pollo Raylan said...

alan markus wrote: Notice how much Bush is relied upon to prop up Obama - that's always the fallback, compare him to Bush, never to better presidents.

True. Perhaps that's why many bristle at the comparisons to Lincoln. He falls way way short. Of course others just take the offense as evidence of the "New Confederacy."

Birches said...

100 comments and no one is disagreeing with Ann or any of the commenters.

There's nothing left to defend.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Drago said...

Michael K said...
" Blogger C Stanley said...Iraq would have been a better analogy."

"No, the Democrats all voted for Iraq"

When speaking about the several Iraqi operations, it's important to be clear about the discrete missions.

The initial operation (designed solely to oust Saddam from power) went just about as flawlessly as an operation could go.

The biggest glitch? The turks did not allow the 4th ID to launch it's portion of the invasion from the north, otherwise it would have been completed much sooner than the already "quick" 21 days of combat operations.

It was after this mission was complete that additional tasks and another mission (rebuild Iraq) came into being with the rest being history.

So, you know, let's be clear about what really happened.

And while you are doing that, you might want to revisit the cease-fire agreement from the first gulf war which provided all the justification needed to forcibly remove Saddam from power.

n.n said...

There was a man-caused disaster in Benghazi.

There was a man-caused disaster in the selective shutdown of the federal government, which was led by Reid and enforced by Obama. The Republicans passed budget bills, which Reid refused to hear, and Obama happily punished ordinary Americans in retribution. Apparently, they though that they were entitled to an omnibus bill, which would, among other things, obfuscate Obamacare's defects.

It's worth noting that Obama once said he would use a scalpel in government reform, but since entering office has done nothing but hatch[-jobs]. Perhaps he believes that the use of scalpels should be restricted to abortion clinics.

Anyway, Obamacare experienced a partial breached birth, which has caused massive hemorrhaging. In order to save the federal government, the clump of policies and regulations known as Obamacare should be aborted. Not only is it not viable, but it is also a burden. We need Planned Government. We need to save the life of the federal government.

Dismember it. Vacuum it. Flush it. The clump of regulations and policies known as Obamacare. Not the clump of cells known as Obama, Reid, Pelosi et al.

Drago said...

Birches said..."100 comments and no one is disagreeing with Ann or any of the commenters.
There's nothing left to defend."

Give them time.

They are still attempting to formulate the talking points that will magically render this entire issue moot.

Lefties are all over the place blaming republicans, fox news (specifically), the press in general (on MSNBC), the insurance companies, capitalism, the forest moon of Endor, the lack of decent sweet and sour sauce, "headwinds" from Europe, a video, etc.

They will find their "most plausible" scapegoat and they will double/triple/quadruple/n-tuple down.

n.n said...

Drago:

Their gods have been exposed as mortal and fallible. Their dreams of material, physical, and ego instant or immediate gratification cannot be fulfilled as promised. They sacrificed their children's lives in the clinics and at the behest of Planned Parenthood for nothing. They will not receive a return on their investment.

ThomasD said...

"6. If Bush experienced a disaster like the rollout of Obamacare, the NYT wouldn't use its front page to remind us of something Bill Clinton did that looked bad."

Maybe, the first time around, you get a pass for not seeing this coming.

But by 2012 this was an all too obvious pattern.

So anyone, ANYONE who voted for this guy in 2012 not only deserves, but also shares blame for every bit of this.

alan markus said...

Dismember it. Vacuum it. Flush it. The clump of regulations and policies known as Obamacare.

See, there's an analogy that has been floating around in my mind for a long time. Obamacare is a child created by a 3-way between Obama, Pelosi, and Reid. Prenatal testing showed that the result is brain damaged,physically impaired, and will be extremely costly to maintain as long as it is alive. It was also known that the delivery would be a breach birth that could endanger the health of the "mother".

So, since the Dems are pro-choice, why didn't they abort this bastard?

n.n said...

alan markus:

They believe in a progressive morality, in the life of their clump of policies and regulations, and a progressive devaluation of capital and labor, respectively. They have a concern for the "mother" to the extent that she remain available for taxable activity and libertinism; otherwise, she is interchangeable (i.e. diversity), and, in fact, disposable (i.e. property), from conception to death.

Here's another metaphor which explains their investment:

Obamacare was intended to be the Democrat's flagship product. Unfortunately, not only was it rushed to production, but it contains insurmountable design flaws. They probably wanted something similar to Medicare, but they could not afford to wait for an economic revival. Their shareholders and customers alike demanded a return on their investment. The management could not afford another failed product launch, especially after promoting it as the final solution. Their egos and their bottom-line were leveraged beyond any tangible collateral they possessed. It was too late for them to declare bankruptcy and escape with their assets unscathed.

EDH said...

Question: "So, since the Dems are pro-choice, why didn't they abort this bastard?"

Answer: Pelosi, Reid and Obama didn't think they'd have to pay for it.

Indeed, they thought the the extra mouths to feed would qualify them for a whole boat-load of taxpayer funded, vote-buying benefits.

damikesc said...

Lefties are all over the place blaming republicans, fox news (specifically), the press in general (on MSNBC), the insurance companies, capitalism, the forest moon of Endor, the lack of decent sweet and sour sauce, "headwinds" from Europe, a video, etc.

MSNBC on-air personalities even called BS on that spin, to boot.

It's pretty bad.

kimsch said...


MadisonMan said...

Waitaminute!

How do you know that Bush and the Republicans didn't design and enact/roll out Katrina. It was a weather modification experiment that went horribly awry and it all started with -- wait for it -- chemtrails.

The NYTimes is laughably transparent in this article. I wonder why they didn't compare Obama's troubles to, say, Clinton's, just to remind us of that fun time in history.


That. And the infamous Karl Rove weather machine.

tim in vermont said...

Wait until the chickens come home to roost in the form of rising interest rates and inflation of the policy of printing money with no end in sight.

kimsch said...

William, and with all that "BOOSH" he's an imbecile! Bush was able to get enough Dem votes to push a lot of stuff through.

Obama (the smartest man in the room) wasn't able to get even one vote for his signature legislation. AND they had to hurry and rush it through before Brown took the senate seat formerly held by Teddy Kennedy so that they could maintain their 60 votes...

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

How do you know that Bush and the Republicans didn't design and enact/roll out Katrina. It was a weather modification experiment that went horribly awry and it all started with -- wait for it -- chemtrails.

Of course it was a Bush conspiracy. How else could they get Cheney in position to blow up those levees?

Unknown said...

Just a note about how the emergency response system is supposed to work. There is the response phase which is solely a local and state responsibility. Then there is the recovery phase which is a FEMA responsibility.

There are two pieces of legislation that cover Federal responsibility: The Stafford act in which the local authorities, thru the state ask for federal assistance. And there is the insurrection act in which the Feds have to declare the state in insurrection and deploy federal troops. Bush considered that and rejected it for good reason. (there I also the posse comitatus act but not relevant in the case of Katrina) Other than those three legislative acts the feds have no legal authority to intervene in local affairs, even as bad as Katrina was. But Katrina was made worse by the feckless democrats, Blanco and Nagin who did nothing. The Katrina debacle rests squarely on the shoulders the democratic administrations at the state and local level fueled by some of the worst journalism in this country's history.

All gov blanco had to do was invoke the Stafford act--

John Constantius said...

Seriously, where is Inga and the rest of the usual suspects? After a bit of excuse-making around "I didn't actually want Obamacare, I wanted single payer", they all just kind of disappeared. I guess even the most loyal supporters of the One don't want to be associated with this thing anymore.

Success has a thousand fathers but failure is an orphan, I suppose.

DanTheMan said...

This seems a good time to remind everyone of O's self-assessment:

"I would put our legislative and foreign policy accomplishments in our first two years against any president — with the possible exceptions of Johnson, F.D.R. and Lincoln — just in terms of what we've gotten done in modern history."


John Constantius said...

The 10-Step Defense of Obamacare (in more or less chronological order):

1. I've heard some people say there's problems with the website but it seems fine to me.

2. It sounds like there's a few glitches with the website but you had to expect that would happen with so many people accessing it.

3. I guess there's a few bugs but that happens with a rollout, it will be seamless in a couple of days.

4. Even if there are problems with the website, which will be fixed in time, the important thing is that millions more people now have insurance who previously didn't.

5. Wait a minute, what?

6. Now look, the President didn't say if you liked your health insurance you could keep it. He said if you liked your health insurance you could keep it as long as it didn't change.

7. Okay, even if he didn't specifically say that, it was very clear from the context. You'd have to be an idiot not to recognize that or you're deliberately pretending to misunderstand.

8. The exchanges would be working fine and all those people with dropped coverage would be able to buy affordable new policies if it wasn't for Republican obstructionism. And the greedy insurance companies. Racists.

9. I didn't really want Obamacare. I think we should have single payer.

10. [crickets]

Nate Whilk said...

Suggested addition to Althouse's list:

Katrina didn't devastate the whole country.

Matthew Sablan said,

Another difference: We have whole museum displays dedicated to the failure that was the response to Katrina.

I don't think we'll get any of those for the ACA.


Pictures and videos of policy cancellation notices and new, higher-priced plan choices are not quite as dramatic.

Henry said,

I just want to hear Mr. Obama say:

"Heck of a job, me."


Or "Heck of a job, brown me."

rehajm said...

Seriously, where is Inga and the rest of the usual suspects?...they all just kind of disappeared.

When the position of an online commenter becomes so shameless and indefensible it forces the conspicuous absence of said commenter.

Given the frequency of it's occurrence I can't believe this phenomenon lacks a universally adopted name.

Scott said...

Nice, Ann.

MPH said...

That's funny. I saw this article was published right before I went to sleep last night. I said to myself, "I hope Prof. Althouse sees this and responds."

Crazy Jane said...

Actually the New York Times ran a second Page 1 political hit piece today. Apparently JP Morgan (now in the crosshairs of the Justice Department, the SEC and the NY AG for Jamie Dimon's failure to curtsy before the king) has cuddled up with influential Chinese princelings and such.

Perhaps we are supposed to believe that Goldman Sachs, Citibank, Harvard and other Administration-approved institutions would never stoop to such behaviors.

Color me skeptical.

Crazy Jane said...

Actually the New York Times ran a second Page 1 political hit piece today. Apparently JP Morgan (now in the crosshairs of the Justice Department, the SEC and the NY AG for Jamie Dimon's failure to curtsy before the king) has cuddled up with influential Chinese princelings and such.

Perhaps we are supposed to believe that Goldman Sachs, Citibank, Harvard and other Administration-approved institutions would never stoop to such behaviors.

Color me skeptical.

eric said...

"As I recall, a few days after the exchange opened Inga pasted a few of them in here - she had several FB friends that allegedly got Obamacare."

Inga herself claimed to be a beneficiary of Obamacare. Her claim was that she would be paying approximately $100 dollars less a month in premiums.

I asked her to show or tell us which plan she had in 2013 and which plan she had in 2014 so we could compare and see that she was actually making that savings.

I'm still waiting.

Her initial response was to challenge me to show my plans for 2013 and 2014. Which I did immediately by giving links to the FedBlue website.

Again, still waiting on Inga.

Rusty said...

eric you're going to have a long wait.
Inga has long history as a lying tart.

kimsch said...

John,
Re: your number 6: Obamacare requires that policies change. Therefore, your policy changes. Therefore, you can't keep your policy. Q.E.D.

It's like the fine for a biofuel that doesn't exist.

Stourley Kracklite said...

No worries, everyone! I found this source for Democrats impeding federal relief for Hurricane Katrina. Please share!

https://web.archive.org/web/20120304155101/http://jjic.gov.state.la.us/Disaster%20Relief%20Request.pdf

Kirk Parker said...

Clyde,

A Jimmy Carter "Miss Me Yet?" billboard? Genius, pure genius!


Birches,

"There's nothing left to defend"

Sure, but don't gloss over the fact that there was never anything to defend in the first place, and Althouse and some others are distressingly late to the party.

Drago,

"And while you are doing that, you might want to revisit the cease-fire agreement from the first gulf war which provided all the justification needed to forcibly remove Saddam from power."

Good grief, bro--stop confusing the issue with inconvenient facts!!!

treeofmamre said...

The biggest parallel between Katrina and the Obamacare failure is that the press has been lying about what is going on. Remember the stories about rapes and murders in the Superdome? Except in the case of Bush, they were doing everything they could to undermine him, while in the case of Obama they are doing everything they can to protect him.

xtina kershner said...

Stupidest article ever!

5. The media were ready to slam ?Bush long and hard for everything — making big scandals out of things that, done by Obama, would have been forgotten a week later (what are the Valerie Plame-level screwups of Obama's?) — but the media have bent over backwards for years to help make Obama look good and to bury or never even uncover all of his lies and misdeeds. yeah! Like that whole Benghazi thing they NEVER talk about, or make stuff up about!
ACtually, Bush did experience a disaster like the rollout of Obamacare. It was called Medicare Part D and John Boehner called it a disaster. Look it up. Difference is - Democrats helped Bush fix it. Look it up. Moran.

Rusty said...

ACtually, Bush did experience a disaster like the rollout of Obamacare. It was called Medicare Part D and John Boehner called it a disaster. Look it up. Difference is - Democrats helped Bush fix it. Look it up. Moran.

Not on the same level at all. One is a scraped knuckle. The other is a sucking chest wound.
There really is no level of comparison. Your attempt at moral equivalence is as lame as the Obamacare ads aimed at young people.
maybe you can answer this question. How is forcing people to act against their own interests moral?

Alton said...

"Obamacare is a child created by a 3-way between Obama, Pelosi, and Reid."

Not exactly, the mother (federal government) was raped.

Jamie said...

Like Erin Moran? (I do love inadvertent irony.)

Bob Morant said...

The most amazing disconnect that happens with the Bush haters has been about his enhanced interrogation techniques. The liberals condemned it as a program of "organized torture," perpetrated without any due process. It was, in their words, the worst thing we could possibly do, even worse than Obama's organized program of killing those same terrorists, by drone.