Democrats & Liberals Archives

Deliver the Goods

In The Art of the Deal, Tony Schwartz ghostwrites on behalf of his client:

“You can’t con people, at least not for long. You can create excitement, you can do wonderful promotion and get all kinds of press, and you can throw in a little hyperbole. But if you don’t deliver the goods, people will eventually catch on … I’d never understood how Jimmy Carter became president. The answer is that as poorly qualified as he was for the job, Jimmy Carter had the nerve, the guts, the balls, to ask for something extraordinary. That ability above all helped him get elected president. But, then, of course, the American people caught on pretty quickly that Carter couldn’t do the job, and he lost in a landslide when he ran for reelection.”

Donald Trump is a man who created an entire career premised upon the oxymoronic concept of "Truthful Hyperbole", a useful euphemism for outright lying. It's a useful talent for a salesman or a lawyer, but it is not a skill Americans appreciate seeing in their President. Barack Obama famously ended his Presidency saying, "reality has a way of asserting itself".

Today, we witnessed the assertion of such a reality. The Republican effort to repeal Obamacare has been abandoned. Unable to realize the "benefits" of cutting the ACA's taxes will likely stymie future tax reform efforts. Meanwhile, the normal business of government lingers on. A deeply unpopular budget from Donald Trump must be reconciled by a Congress scared of the growing opposition to conservatism from their constituents. A debt ceiling must be raised despite the protestations of an emboldened radical cohort of extreme rightists in the HFC.

Given this, I suspect we will see many more instances of "reality asserting itself" over the upcoming year. Paul Ryan better be prepared for more "growing pains" to come if he ever ones to lead a governing coalition instead of a mere opposition.

Posted by Warren Porter at March 24, 2017 9:47 PM
Comment #414649

It should be clear that the only way that Trump will succeed is to move to the left. The intransigent conservative right will block him on all fronts. They don’t compromise. When Boehner left, it should have been clear that the conservative caucus in the House will not work with the majority leadership. If you can’t get a bill passed within your own party after almost eight years of promising repeal and replace, then you are not going to get anything meaningful done.

The option is to work with the Democrats to neuter the conservative caucus. We shall see if Trump can read the tea leaves.

Posted by: Rich at March 24, 2017 10:32 PM
Comment #414650

“Don’t be afraid to walk away. Make crazy claims you can’t back up. Blame everyone else. Whine. Sit in a big truck.”

The Art of the Deal

(Tweet by Ken Tremendous)

Posted by: phx8 at March 24, 2017 11:02 PM
Comment #414651

So let me get this straight a republican controlled HoR can vote 43 times to repeal Obamacare but cannot come up with a replacement for this most horrible of laws! The great negotiator cannot get a deal passed with in his own party! The deal they were trying to get through Congress would have put millions without insurance and the repubs couldn’t agree on going back to the good ol’ days!

The repubs have told us we need a businessman running the country, and it seems they have found a way to make GWB look good, but have utterly failed in convincing anyone a businessman can do the job. The good thing is the new Trunmpcare/Ryancare debauchery of a scam was so bad this failure is good news. Hopefully all our conservative friends here on WB have learned a lesson from this goat roping. You guys have been defrauded!

Posted by: j2t2 at March 25, 2017 1:34 AM
Comment #414655

What a disgrace. What an utter disgrace. Dozens of votes by Republicans to repeal, or repeal and replace Obamacare. Seven years to prepare an alternative. Seven years. All that time to build a consensus in the insurance industry, in Congress, and among voters. And that was the result?

And they CHOSE to do that. That was Republicans putting their best foot forward with an important piece of legislation that they have talked about incessantly for seven years. Ugh. What a horrible piece bill. Just awful. And what a bad job of attempting to pass it.

Trump was just as bad as Ryan. Trump tried to sway ‘no’ votes because he was supposedly a great salesman and closer, but, boy, he was not. He knew nothing about the product. He did not care. Obama stumped the country over a period of a year, pushing for health care reform, and whatever people may think of him, he was passionate and he was knowledgeable and he was involved. Trump went golfing every weekend. The actual legislation was contrary to what Trump promised in his campaign. How stupid.

Ryan and the GOP faced the same problem within their own party that they have faced for years. One portion of the GOP is conservative. The other portion, the Freedom Caucus et al, consists of Area 51 extremist. The middle can be convinced to be radical, but really, they just want to reward the rich and Big Oil.

Knowing this, it would have made sense to court at least a few Democrats. Why not put together a moderate proposal that would actually have a chance of receiving a vote in the House? Instead, the GOP did a spectacular and very public snow plow with its face, and then, without having to even bothered with consulting with the opposition party, Trump tried to blame Democrats.

What an absolute disgrace.

Posted by: phx8 at March 25, 2017 1:13 PM
Comment #414657

Yup, stupidity and failure reigned in the House of Hidden Horrors.

Thankfully, conservatives and some moderates saved the day and refused to vote for another Obamacare type debacle.

We have seen the Obamacare foundation crumbling for a few years now and its demise appears to be accelerating. Perhaps our Liberal friends can tell us how long it has to remain alive.

I do believe Obamacare has a “do not resuscitate” sign hung on its big toe.

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 25, 2017 3:00 PM
Comment #414658

“We have seen the Obamacare foundation crumbling for a few years now and its demise appears to be accelerating.”

Nope. The ACA is fine, according to the CBO. The organization for actuaries said no, there is no ‘death spiral.’ That has been a talking point for the GOP for the past seven years and it never came true and there is no reason to believe it will come true in the future either. Premiums for the next four years are expected to increase a little more than 6% a year.

There are ways it can be improved, but the GOP seems to have no plans for that. One of the main points of the GOP plan was to provide tax cuts for the rich by not insuring the poor and elderly. Now the GOP will supposedly move on to tax legislation and forget about health care. Deficits, ho!

The only way Obamacare will fail is if the GOP causes it. The HHS Secretary, Price, can do a lot of damage all by himself, but no one knows what he will go through with it. When Trump fired the AG’s he fired the one investigating Price for insider trading, so he bought Price some time, but that won’t stop the legal system in southern NY from eventually catching up with that crook.

Posted by: phx8 at March 25, 2017 3:37 PM
Comment #414659

Sorry to disappoint phx8, but I don’t get my opinion on Obamacare from GOP talking points.

I have posted numerous articles from responsible sources, that have highlighted major companies withdrawing from the Obamacare marketplace due to huge losses.

I have also posted numerous articles from responsible sources that have highlighted premium increases for health care across the board.

I have also posted numerous articles from responsible sources that have highlighted the deleterious effect Obamacare has had, and continues to have, on small business.

I can believe what I have read or I can just take your word.

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 25, 2017 3:49 PM
Comment #414661

So Royal has your information come from the same group of people that have insisted upon the 43 repeal votes, and have lied consistently the past 8 years about Obamacare? You have just seen the result of this scam and yet your sources are “responsible”! Ha, get over yourself dude. You have been defrauded by the far right conservatives who have no answer, who have put nothing on the table but the garbage that even repubs cannot stomach.

Time for you guys to get real, stop fooling yourself into believing your team has a clue. The freedumb caucus has fooled you, they didn’t save the day their plan would only do more damage to the country. Of course your “responsible” source won’t tell you that so you may need to dig a bit deeper. Maybe ask Rubio why he intentionally wrote legislation to cause Obamacare self inflicted problems.

What has become clear is this, Trump is a fraud, Ryan is a clown and conservatives are morally bankrupt.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 25, 2017 4:18 PM
Comment #414663

“So Royal has your information come from the same group of people that have insisted upon the 43 repeal votes,…”


Too bad my jackass Pal never read the links I posted from neutral sources. But, I doubt j2t2 reads anything but the pulp fiction generated by the Socialist Left and expect others to be just as myopic.

He won’t believe that the insurance companies who provide Obamacare plans are dropping out due to huge losses. He refuses to accept into his thinking the many major news reports of enormous increases in health care premiums.

Many Lefty’s suffer from ignorance and sloth.

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 25, 2017 4:33 PM
Comment #414664

Aetna pulled out of the exchanges out of spite. They wanted to do a big merger and the Obama administration denied it.

Premiums increased under Obamacare by about 21% nationwide between 2011 to 2016. From 2006 to 2011 they went up over 30%. They are expected to increase an average of @ 6% for the next four years. That’s not great, but it’s not bad either.

Personally, I want universal health care/single payer/Medicare-for-All. I see no reason whatsoever why private health insurers should be involved in health care. Obamacare is better than nothing, or that travesty of a bill put out there by the House, but Obamacare deductions are too high and it costs too much per year.

We are the only industrialized country in the world with private health care insurers, and we pay twice as much per capita as other countries with government funded health care, yet fail to even cover everyone.

Posted by: phx8 at March 25, 2017 5:17 PM
Comment #414665

“…Obamacare deductions are too high and it costs too much per year.”

Ah, yes, place the burden on those who still work and play by the rules or; just add the increased cost to our national debt.

Has phx8 any idea how much it will cost; to lower cost?

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 25, 2017 5:33 PM
Comment #414666

Working people already pay a substantial portion of their income to private health insurers. Employers contribute, though that makes no sense, since everyone needs health care regardless of whether they are employed or unemployed, young or old.

Private health insurers are motivated by the need to make a profit every year, and increase that profit year over year. There is no practical reason not transition our current system into a single payer model that works better and costs less, like, say, every other country in the world. Over time, it would be reasonable to expect health care to drop from 17% of GDP down to what the rest of the world experiences, 12% of GDP or lower.

Posted by: phx8 at March 25, 2017 5:39 PM
Comment #414667

“Private health insurers are motivated by the need to make a profit every year, and increase that profit year over year.”

Spoken like a true Socialist. Can you not apply the same statement to every industry and private endeavor? Eliminate capitalism and enjoy nirvana?

Posted by: Royal Flush at March 25, 2017 5:53 PM
Comment #414668

Efficiency and creative destruction are benefits of capitalism. It innovates, evolves, and adapts as technologies change. So there are sectors of the economy where capitalism works better than government.

Health care insurance does not benefit consumers when it becomes more efficient, because that involves charging more for a service that never really changes, while denying coverage more and more in order to increase profits. There are sectors where capitalism simply does not work very well-not only health care, but also the military, the police and fire departments, and so on.

Posted by: phx8 at March 25, 2017 6:35 PM
Comment #414673

Not once did I hear someone say this bill would repeal the ACA. I don’t think it did. I heard no one said this would allow insurance to be purchased across state lines. I don’t think it did that either. No where did I hear this bill would cover preexisting conditions.

What I did here is that this bill is Obamacare Lite.

I hoped this bill would fail. I’m glad it did. Now they should concentrate on what they said they were going to do, Repeal and Replace.

They don’t have to do it all in one bill. They can repeal the ACA. They can write a bill that covers preexisting conditions. They can write another that allows the purchase across state lines. They can write a bill that controls tort. The all or nothing approach should fail, and I’m glad it did.

Posted by: Weary Willie at March 26, 2017 10:47 AM
Comment #414674

phx8, private security is much more efficient than local police departments. The only reason people don’t provide their own security is because they think the government should. They think the government should provide their children’s education, their fire protection, their defense in court, all less efficient than tailor made solutions that are paid for by the consumer.

Perhaps what we’re dealing with is a flawed frame of mind, not a flawed system.

Posted by: Weary Willie at March 26, 2017 10:51 AM
Comment #414676
Not once did I hear someone say this bill would repeal the ACA.

Here you go.

Posted by: Warren Porter at March 26, 2017 12:13 PM
Comment #414677
private security is much more efficient than local police departments.

Oh BS Weary. Thy serve two different purposes. How well does the security guard at the local warehouse do when he has to respond to a domestic violence call down the road? Or an auto accident? About as well as a cop guarding just one building or complex instead of an entire precinct.

I know myths die hard Weary but it is time to put this one to rest.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 26, 2017 2:01 PM
Comment #414678

There is still a way for the GOP to destroy health care coverage for millions. Currently part of the subsidy uses CSR’s, Cost Sharing Reduction reimbursements. With these, the federal government reimburses private carriers for temporarily covering some of the cost of the subsidies. If Price at HHS discontinued these reimbursements, it would throw seven million off insurance, and probably scare private health insurers away from the market for good. Price could then claim that the federal government simply cannot afford to make such pay outs, and besides, it is just Obamacare going into a death spiral and imploding. Of course, that’s false. It would actually be the federal government withholding the funds it collected for the ACA from going towards the ACA. But that would be enough to cripple it.

Posted by: phx8 at March 26, 2017 2:42 PM
Comment #414681

Why would Trump spend so much on security if he can get better security from the local police?

How much more efficient is a home security system compared to a local policeman? Why would anyone waste money on a home security system when they already pay their city and county and the federal government all that money for security?

Thanks for the twitter feed from some stranger, Warren Porter. I got more news from him than I did on the entire media’s reporting of the issue.

Posted by: Weary Willie at March 26, 2017 4:14 PM
Comment #414682
Why would Trump spend so much on security if he can get better security from the local police.
Maybe because the local police aren’t for sale.
I got more news from him than I did on the entire media’s reporting of the issue.

So, do you agree with the contents of said tweet?

Posted by: Warren Porter at March 26, 2017 5:43 PM
Comment #414683

Weary, do you really want a police force with the manpower to protect each and every one of us around the clock. I wonder how good Trumps private security is at solving crimes and writing tickets for speeders. I also wonder how much Trumps spends to get the “efficiency” you speak of. Were we to extrapolate this figure out to each and every American would it be less than what we spend now? If not wouldn’t that put your myth to rest?

Posted by: j2t2 at March 26, 2017 5:55 PM
Comment #414689

Royal Flush-
Would you like to comment on the Republican’s refusal, under the Affordable Care Act, to allocate money to the Insurance companies, as the text of the law promises, in order to make up for greater than expected costs in the marketplace? Indications are that this is somewhat responsible for many of the rate-hikes and pull-outs people like you gloated over.

Or put another way, if Obamacare is so terrible a system, why are Republicans sabotaging it, especially when they’re short a replacement? Is it just that hard not to do damage with your policies for your own political gain? Is there some point at which responsibility to the country overtakes obligations to promote the fortunes of your party? You guys seem to think you’re so indispensable that you’re justified in doing whatever it takes to win the elections.

The irony is, your people were never prepared to actually govern. Having spent most of the last eight years simply being critics, doing very little to constructively lead the country, your leadership at this point is lacking in practical value, because you haven’t practiced putting together actual policy, both in the real world of politics, and in the real world in which the policy unfolds. You’ve become the very ivory tower academics you long criticized the Democrats as. And you’re going to pay for that. A whole bunch of people learned you aren’t capable of delivering on your promises, even with a majority in Congress and the White House. A whole bunch of people finally got educated as to how much Obamacare actually did for them, what rights and what services it has afforded them. You guys can’t continue being a bunch of useless saboteurs forever, especially with all the things Trump did to win the 2016 election looming over them.

The time came to put up or shut up, and Republicans had nothing any sane person would care to accept to put up.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 27, 2017 8:09 AM
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