Barack Obama Criticism Health care Politics The Opinionsphere

Matthew Continetti on the Health Care Debate: A Nihilist’s Defense of the Right Wing Hardline

[digg-reddit-me]I had written a few pieces some weeks ago criticizing the Obama administration for relying too much on technocratic instead of democratic institutions, though I attributed a good deal of the problem to the flaws which are so glaring in our democratic institutions. (Is Obama Leading Us To A Technocratic Dystopia? and An Encroaching Technocracy.) So I was a bit excited to see The Weekly Standard pick up on this subject in a piece by Matthew Continetti called “Technocracy in America.” I had a vague recollection of The Weekly Standard as a serious intellectual journal that – while right wing – took issues seriously.

What I found instead was something profoundly unserious at almost every point. The main thesis of the piece was that liberals hated democracy and that conservatives attacks on health care were justified. Despite it’s title, it barely touched on the idea of technocracy, except as a glancing reference to insinuate that Democrats hate the people. Most opinion pieces can be characterized as

  • propaganda meant to stiffen the spine of the already committed or cleverly persuade without honest discussion the unconvinced;
  • a polemic which is meant to advance the case for a controversial position as far as possible; or
  • civil discourse which is designed to educate and engage  and requires a good faith effort to understand and explain one’s opponents’ views.

This piece fell almost entirely into the first category. Which was disappointing. For the first portion of the piece, Continetti attempted to explain Barack Obama’s approach to health care – and it reads like an inoculation, an attempt to shape the audience’s perception of Obama’s words so that they prove ineffective, rather than an attempt to accurately describe them. Continetti starts out with the presumption that one of the core principles of liberalism is a “contempt for debate and smug sense of moral and intellectual superiority” which he describes as the reason Obama believes his health care plan is a good one. He distorts Obama’s message combating lies about health care reform by saying that Obama – by pointing to the various lies and calling them such – is saying that “There is no legitimate basis for opposition. There are only lies.”

Continetti then moves to several questionable assertions of fact meant to undermine the President’s claims – that:

  • it is a “widely held view that the best improvement to the Democrats’ grandiose plans is to scuttle them and start over with a set of targeted insurance reforms” (Continetti doesn’t cite any polls here – and perhaps that is because polling has consistently shown that a majority of the public supports Obama’s reform plans when the policies are described, but that support has weakened for what is perceived to be Obama’s plans);
  • that in “a world where money is fungible,” of course any spending on health care will go to abortions (But couldn’t the same argument be used to say tax cuts funding abortions?); and
  • that illegal immigrants would get health care under Obama’s health care system because “who would ever tell José and Maria No mas when they show up at the emergency room in need of care?” (Of course, Continetti conveniently omits that this is also the status quo.

Continetti – as he works for The Weekly Standard – also realized he must defend Sarah Palin against charges that she was hyping charges about “death panels.” She wasn’t, Continetti argues – she was merely creating “an extrapolation based on an analysis of the facts” when she wrote on Facebook:

The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s “death panel” so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their “level of productivity in society,” whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil.

My “extrapolation based upon an analysis of facts” is that Sarah Palin can’t read as at least one of the facts that Palin based her “extrapolation” on was an idiot’s reading of one of the hundreds of articles Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel wrote back in the 1990s.

But then, at the very end, I almost had hope. Amidst the constant smears of “the angry and arrogant left-wing” and paeans to the “instinctual conservatism of an American populace that is skeptical of complicated and expensive government interventions” and the constant attempts to mislead his audience about what Obama was saying, a small hint of anything other than political posturing enter into the piece. But that’ll be Part II.

6 replies on “Matthew Continetti on the Health Care Debate: A Nihilist’s Defense of the Right Wing Hardline”

Our government panders to the 20 to 30 plus (?) illegal immigrants allowing them free subsidies from taxpayers in the US. California–a Sanctuary State has one of the worst records that currently languish under the immense burden of near bankruptcy, instead of –ATTRACTING–ICE to illegal business operations. Certain legislators in Sacramento, led by Gilbert Cedillo-D has authored a lame brain resolution condemning any interference in immigration enforcement. Congressman Brian Bilbray-R Calif. reminds Sen. Cedillo that this resolution breaks the laws of the Constitution. “He should look up the separation of powers section and this resolution is nothing more than political posturing.” Cedillo urges President Obama to declare an immediate moratorium on immigration policies and practices until a comprehensive reform of immigration is enacted. The resolution states ” The State of California values all of its residents, whether they be citizens, legal residents, or undocumented immigrants, and strives to enable all residents to work and live free from discrimination, exploitation, and repressive federal immigration enforcement.” This man certainly has no love for the legal American worker and should be immediately discarded from office as his words are a form of treachery to the jobless people hurting.

Why wouldn’t certain legislators want health care for foreign labor, because they have an over abundance of illegal immigrant families to financially support? Our own government is so absorbed in protecting every other countries border? They remain unconcerned to our poor replica border fence that should have been a two-tier periphery, with border patrol surveillance lanes in between, as originally planned by Rep. Duncan Hunter. Every time a good enforcement plan is written, it’s methodically cut to pieces by pro-illegal worker politicians and open border fanatics. Though we spend billions on our armed forces in foreign lands, the rich countries in Europe just forward token troops and little money: while our nation is literary falling apart at the seams–or its rivets?

Any moment now I expect to hear of yet another collapsing ailing city bridge, deteriorating waterworks, the underground pipes and eroding highway. Our cities are already exhibiting inward decay, but years of neglect by the very people who’s supposed to protect us do nothing? I have reiterated watch “The Crumbling of America” on the History (International) channel in the next few weeks and learn? This is where your tax dollars should be going? We must not allow the Administration as in previous times keep sending our precious tax dollars to other countries. These politicians are deaf, dumb and intentionally blind to the rigors our industrial nation is going through. Not just Democrats, but the Republicans have had their sticky fingers in the bad apple–SPECIAL INTEREST–barrel, where money is plentiful. It’s like they are intentionally trying to turn our magnificent country into a third world nation, while making other cheap labor countries, on an even par with our sovereign society as US wages tumble? Then Again the Council of Foreign Relations have been amplifying its agenda of free movement of cheap labor through North America for years?

Most of these other lands have been at each others throats for centuries, so why do we expect any metamorphism into something any different? Only change can come from within, not by our nation expending billions of dollars, American lives? We must build our own borders fences, tall and strong and meant to keep out drug dealers, criminal aliens, terrorists and the never ending tracks of illegal aliens. Our politician’s noses are involved in too much foreign policy, while our aging infrastructure implodes. Trillions of dollars are spirited out the country, while we gain little in return. Washington–MUST–start giving back to the jobless American worker by placing a 5 year moratorium on all immigration, even legal? The next politicians should deliver us from any new sinister path to citizenship or better referred to as BLANKET AMNESTY? Follow the “Rule of Law” and not twist it into something else for their own convenience, as it will come back to haunt them at the voting booth. Unless ACORN steps-in with another fed contract and handles sign-ups for the ballot box? In that case will still see absentee ballots for the deceased people, pets and anybody who has learned that you need no government picture ID to sign on to vote.

The 1986 immigration reform bill dismally failed last time and all we inherited was 5 million illegal immigrants that still keep on coming with their impoverished hands out. Anti-Illegal immigrant forces are growing in numbers to stop another travesty. They acknowledge it could end up costing billions, perhaps even trillions of dollars. Nationwide we have seen the advent of closing hospitals and emergency rooms that have been submerged everyday by swarms by penniless foreigners and their families. Yes! We need health care reform. Americans are dying, going bankrupt , falling under the spell of debt collectors. The special interest lobbyists are causing mass hysteria by lying to the people. Many insurance companies are under this bombardment in television, radio and mass media. Their Status quo wants no change to their profits or high flying CEO’s making millions of dollars. on patients backs? I want health care reform, for the sake of my step daughter who died of Cancer, because the insurers said it was a pre-existing condition and they couldn’t continue to insure her?

It has become an enigma–THAT THE EMPLOYERS WHO HIRE THEM-LEAVE THE MAJORITY OF SICK PEOPLE ON THE STEPS OF EMERGENCY ROOMS. SO THAT THEIR RESPONSIBILITY ENDS THERE? THEY DRIVE AWAY WITH A CLEAR CONSCIOUS? THEN IS LEFT FOR THE TAXPAYERS CHECK BOOK TO PAY THE BILL? THOSE EMPLOYERS SHOULD BE HUNTED DOWN AND HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR EVERY CENT. We have already been warned by the census bureau of overpopulation in the not too distant future. WE now have a very unique deterrent called E-Verify, that is a part of the SAVE ACT and our lawmakers should stop procrastinating and make it permanent for every worker? Washington knows their walking on quicksand, if the try to under fund or spirit away E-Verify this time around? The corrupting influences from the special interest lobby, have failed to induce many lawmakers to table E-Verify. In our future it could have many other uses other than extracting unauthorized labor from the workplace. Once fully installed it could check state drivers license applicants, insurance, school and higher education registrations and hospital admittances.
Americans have been unknowingly paying taxes to underwrite subsidies for the illegal population for decades. This is the biggest draw to American jobs, because the employers who hire them are sentient that taxpayers will foot the bills for education, health food stamps, housing and other government benefit consignments that even as citizens are denied. Keep the phone calls coming at 202-224-3121 LOOK FOR ANSWERS AT NUMBERSUSA, JUDICIAL WATCH & OVERPOPULATION AT CAPSWEB? These websites can identity politicians who actually work for the American people and others whose immigration grading level is unsatisfactory to stay in office? Have you heard about any large ICE raids lately? ICE got the order to cease and desist from the motley Democratic leadership. They are also using their influence to either weaken the federal training program 287 G that gives local police federal right to hold for questioning suspicious individual’s immigration status and to rescind the no-match-letter capability in determining a person’s right to work?

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