Full services start up tomorrow: We’re headed home on Amtrak. Full services resume here tomorrow.
In our view, the weekend’s most appalling news report appeared in yesterday’s New York Times. It concerns the way average people get conned by propaganda and disinformation.
Reporting from West Virginia, Jackie Calmes explained why some low-income people failed to enroll for subsidized health insurance or perhaps for Medicaid. They believed various crazy claims about Obamacare:
CALMES (4/27/14): “Literally, people thought there would be chips embedded in their bodies if they signed up for Obamacare,” Mr. Bryant said.These people believed the bogus claims which were spread far and wide. For that reason, they refused to sign up for affordable health care.
Far to the east, at a branch of the Shenandoah Valley Medical System in Martinsburg, Sara R. Koontz, a social worker, said she had heard people express fears about chip implants as well as “death panels” as she sought to enroll uninsured residents. Some told her that they would rather pay a penalty than sign up for insurance, she said, and even people who did enroll paused in their excitement to ask, “Wait—this isn’t that Obamacare, is it?”
Stoking such sentiments in order to rouse conservatives to vote is central to Republicans’ hopes of not only keeping their House majority but perhaps recapturing the Senate.
Of course, cons and deceptions of this type have driven our discourse for decades. For the past two decades, Sean Hannity has played a leading role in spreading bogus claims about Social Security, federal taxes, and whatever else was current.
Now, we liberals are in a fury because of Hannity’s pimping of the ridiculous Cliven Bundy. Meanwhile, Bundy got pushed from the headlines this weekend by the pitiful apparent statements of 81-year-old Donald Sterling, the Los Angeles Clippers’ owner.
We liberals are aflame, sometimes happily so, about the pitiful statements by Bundy and Sterling. How inane were Sterling’s statements?
So inane that the Los Angeles NAACP has dropped plans to present him with a lifetime achievement award next month! For more information, click here.
We’ll be honest. We think the focus on Bundy and Sterling is in some ways unimpressive. We’re wondering why it takes such ridiculous statements by such ridiculous figures to rouse our liberal world.
Sterling has been considered a ridiculous figure for years. We’re wondering why he was slated to receive that lifetime achievement award, though we can imagine several answers.
Beyond that, we’re thinking about the liberal world’s failure to confront Hannity, and other purveyors of disinformation, down through these many years.
(Just for the record, Sterling’s ridiculous statements were made in private, to his ridiculous girlfriend. Hannity’s endless bogus statements have been made in the open air, to millions of people.)
We liberals! We’re very good at ridiculing the dumbest people in the world. But what has kept us, down through the years, from creating a winning politics?
The liberal world is up and roaring today. As all those people go uninsured, we’re a bit less than impressed.
Meanwhile, this just in: Yesterday, she made it official. As it turns out, Maureen Dowd is prepared to announce that she’s brighter than Bundy too.
Again, we think of the punch line to Carole Leifer’s joke. How far down the evolutionary scale do we have to venture?