“The Stupidity Of The American Voter”: This Is Our Government, This Is The ACA, This Is The Obama Administration, And This Is Arrogant, Undemocratic And Unethical….Now What?

Neither the words not the arrogance should shock anyone who is clear-eyed and been paying attention. The fact, however, that one of the key architects of the Affordable Care Act would feel comfortable saying this in public exposes something rotten and ugly about our elected and appointed deceivers. Here is what M.I.T. economist Jonathan Gruber, recognized as one of the chief architects of Obamacare, said in a 2013 symposium, caught on video and only surfacing in the media—that biased, unreliable, conservative media, natch—now:

“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical for the thing to pass.”


1. Res ipsa loquitur. Still…

2. I guess that explains the other transparency issues in the administration, unless you are so gullible that you believe that Gruber was not expressing the culture in which the ACA was passed.

3. Note that the stupid voters are Obama’s supporters.

4. Leaders who have such contempt for those they lead are not only untrustworthy, but dangerous.

5. Any law that is passed with this philosophy deserves to be repealed for that reason alone.

6. This does not describe a democracy. This describes government by fraud.

7. So Justice Roberts was right all along. It was a tax. It was a tax intentionally disguised to slip past stupid voters and lazy legislators.

8. And Gruber is proud of it.

9. I guess M.I.T. is proud too. I believe any reputable school would fire someone like this from the faculty. He is advocating cheating.

10. The video above is on YouTube. Send it far and wide, especially to your progressive and Democratic friends. Their reactions will be fascinating.


19 thoughts on ““The Stupidity Of The American Voter”: This Is Our Government, This Is The ACA, This Is The Obama Administration, And This Is Arrogant, Undemocratic And Unethical….Now What?

  1. Not stupid voters, gulled voters, and not stupid legislators, legislators who were in on the deceit. Those opposed were simply too few to prevent its passage. More to the point, though, Obama and his remaining supporters are still touting the ACA as his greatest achievement and will continue to tout it as such long after he is gone from the White House in January 2017. C.S. Lewis once put into the mouth of one of his “sage” characters as he addresses the hero of the piece how to break an enchantment words to the effect of it would not be to his advantage to continue into the unknown with men uninformed or men deceived, for that is not how great unenchantments are achieved. Great legislation is also not achieved by a nation hoodwinked, and if you have to hoodwink a nation to pass it, was it ever that great to begin with?

  2. Couldn’t it be said that the original Declaration of Independence of the U.S. also would not have come to pass, given the unanimous approval that was self-imposed by the body that approved it, without some lack of transparency and without some delegates’ deliberate shirking of responsibility to represent and act knowingly for the benefit of large constituencies (New York comes to mind – but maybe I am depending too much on what I gleaned from the musical “1776”)?

    I hope you know that I am not trying to make a case for consequentialism. Nor am I defending the deception which was used to enact the ACA.

    • It may be obvious to you (and me) that they think their base is stupid, but it’s not obvious to the stupid base. You can’t be “apathetic” to smoking gun evidence whether it surprises you or not. It is confirmation. Were all the journalists, Rachel Maddow, pundits, ACA fans similarly lying when they cited the CBO figures to tell critics and skeptics (like, say, me) that we were biased, ignorant, fact-ignoring fools? I don’t think so….not all of them, at least.

  3. Pingback: Lexington Libertarian | We Lied To Pass Obamacare

  4. I am totally apathetic to this video.

    It was clear during the legislative process that Democrats were writing this bill with the explicit goal of gaming the CBO scores. That was obvious and apparent when they were doing it, so I can’t even count this video as confirmation.

    The rest is also just standard, obvious stuff. I view the likelihood of voting as a function of voter knowledge and involvement. So the more knowledgeable and interested you are in policy then more likely you are to vote. Democrats win when they turn out the low information/involvement voters, Republicans win when they stay home. Just look at the Maryland elections, when 2.6 million people turned out from Maryland in the 2008 presidential election the Democratic wins by 700,000 votes. When 1.6 million people from Maryland turn out for the 2014 governors race a Republican wins by 70,000 votes. The total difference in voter turnout between the two elections, 1 million votes, was more votes than Hogan received to win in 2014, 847,000.

    Of course it’s the strategy of the Democrats to turn out low information voters and then craft policy/legislation in a non-transparent manor. While it’s nice that Dr. Gruber comes out and says as much, I don’t need the confirmation because it’s obviously true.

    • It is also not likely to matter to their voting base. It is apparent that the Democratic party has intentionally created a poverty-stricken class dependent on government benefits. Have you ever seen how hard it is to get off welfare? Say you are a single mother on welfare. You get free housing, free daycare, food stamps, WIC,free college, and other assistance. This adds up to over $20,000/year. If you get a minimum wage job, you make $14,500 full-time minus ~$1500 for social security and unemployment tax (and possibly others). You also lose everything..including daycare! Why not have a graded scale so they always make more money if they work? Why not take $1 in benefits for every $2 made in wages so people could get out of the system? You can’t do it because the Democrats protest! This is about staying in power, not helping people. This is about controlling the populace, not being elected representatives of the public will.

      I think Bloomberg’s soda ban is the perfect example of the modern Democratic policy. Micromanaging people for what they feel is ‘the greater good’. Next, enforced 6 AM calisthenics.

      • I wish this was even controversial, but although maybe a little heavy on the hyperbole, it’s pretty standard stuff. It’s called the poverty trap, and the CBO did a report in 2012 showing the effective marginal tax rates when you include all federal taxes and transfers, see page 7:

        Click to access 11-15-2012-MarginalTaxRates.pdf

        From around $10,000 to $22,000 of income, the effective marginal tax rate is north of 70%, and for a range of a couple thousand dollars it’s north of 90%. This excludes state taxes and benefits, but it’s the data side of what you describe. For every dollar a person makes between ~$17,000 – ~$20,000, they will see an increase in income of $0.05. Unless someone earning the minimum wage can expect to see a single large pay jump, like going from no college education to having a college education, it’s rational to not try to increase your income.

        • Wanna really benefit the “poor”?

          Abolish the income tax.

          Then, with tax burdens shifted to sales/excise/foreign trade taxes, the people can easily opt out of taxes simply by deciding if their consumption is worth the cost.

          The beauty of that is also people have IMMEDIATE PAINFUL visibility of how much the Fed wrings out of them on a constant basis, unlike the nefarious income tax, which is quietly removed a small bit at a time, behind the scenes and generally un-noticed as people have simply grown accustomed to not getting what their employer pays them.

  5. I will say first that in all this talk of stupidity, this guy takes the cake. What an idiot. Sure he is highly educated but many book smart people are just dumb. But at least he is honest, I will get to that in a minute.

    Now, as to his comments that he made, I believe he is confusing the idea of “stupidity” and “ignorance”. I believe it is true that many politicians rely on the ignorance of the American voter. Both sides are guilty of it and both sides should be ashamed of it. Now, there are circumstances where one might choose to be willfully ignorant. In those cases then perhaps we can rightly call the persons stupid, but that could be another discussion for another time.

    I am sure that if you look back at the administrations of Bush II, Clinton, Bush I, Reagan, etc that you will find many examples where items were passed because people took advantage of the ignorance of the American voter. So replace stupidity with ignorance and perhaps Gruber is correct.

    Now, as it comes to transparency, I really do not see how the law was passed in an opaque way. The base, unamended, bills were available on the internet to read. When the discussion over healthcare reform began I made sure to download the originals from the government websites and to track amendments as they took place. Each week I would check to see if an amendment was made and I would then see what that amendment meant in the overall scope of the bill. I am unsure how such a process lacks transparency. The only people who cannot see through it are the people who didn’t bother to read it.

    The persons fighting the implementation of the Affordable Care Act also relied on the ignorance of the american voter. I remember the letter that was sent out by the “Liberty Council” that stated that section 22 of some part of the bill would lead to rationing of health services and death panels. My Congressional representative at the time, Joseph Cao, took this as the truth at his town hall meetings when he presented the issues he had with the bill. Of course, that section had nothing to do with death panels or rationing of healthcare. That section only limited cost sharing that an insurance company could do. No more. No less.

    Again, to be clear, I am not making the argument of “they did it so we can do it too”. I am making the argument that Gruber is basically describing the attitude of most American politicians, left and right, and how they view the electorate. And why do they view the electorate that way? Because in many cases the electorate proves them right. When you can say a turd sandwich is filet mignon and they believe you, then that doesn’t give the typical politician much reason to not continuously represent turd sandwiches as filet mignons.

    And whose fault is it? It is all our fault. All voters, left, right, and center. We are to blame for who we elect. We are to blame for allowing them to get away with horrible 30 second campaign commercials and sound blurbs and not fact checking them to see if they are actually correct or not. We are to blame for continuously supporting those who do not have respect for us to be honest with us. We are at fault for believing the media when they say a candidate is an “also ran” or otherwise not worthy of our time because he/she hasn’t collected the requisite enough campaign contributions to be worthy of your consideration (which to the media means to buy advertising from them). When we as voters wake up and realize that in 2014 you should not need a vast amount of money to win elections we will start getting better candidates who are better suited to go serve the people instead of themselves and their campaign contributors. Until then, those who are elected on both sides of the aisle will continue to assume that we are a bunch of ignorant sheep who will just follow what is said.

    As to Jack’s observations, I am not sure how many laws would survive such a purge of all laws passed based on the ignorance of voters were required to be stripped from the books.

    I have consistently said that the mandate was legal under the authority of Congress to amend the tax code since before its passage. I remember Lawrence ODonnell on MSNBC making the same argument prior to passage. There are other fines in our tax code. I always thought they should sell it as that. However, as Gruber says, if these politicians see that they can get away with it, then they are going to keep on doing it.

    • It is a tax when its constitutionality was questioned. When it was challenged based on the Origination Clause, it was not a tax. It is whatever it needs to be to be declared valid.

  6. 1. et cum spiritu tuo.
    2. a stretch.
    3. Perry, cruz, and palin not to mention michelle bauchmann also have some stupid supporters. So Obama has not cornered the market.
    4. I agree that lying to get us into a war, spending the government into bankruptcy off the books, deregulating banking and housing encouraging a collapse of both, are bad things that leaders should not do.
    5. If we had to repeal all the laws that were passed after misrepresentations were made about them, there would be a lot of repealed laws. It is never right. One must compare the good any legislation would do vs. the bad, then go out and play a round of Gulf of Tonkin, or sit in on a death committee.
    6. Your observation here makes clear you are at opposite ends with the Republican icon Abraham Lincoln, and the Constitution should be un-amended to permit slavery and servitude.
    7. If you were to ask 1,000 people at random who Gruber is, no one would recognize the name. What does he lead.
    8 . You give no credit to Members of Congress and their staffs. They all knew that provisions were in the bill to finance the program. The Supreme Court upheld the method. Or are we just to accept the position of one of the nine?
    9. You are the last person I ever expected to recommend firing an M.I.T. professor for speaking his mind — Georgetown professor, yes. Next, you’ll be censuring Tom and Ray (I meant the late Tommy) for using their M.I.T. degrees disgracefully on the radio.
    10. Sister Patricia Joseph taught me never to shake a feather pillow out a window, because you can never collect all the feathers later. I am sure what she had in mind is spreading a bunch of bullshit and trying to make it look like some capital offense.

    • Well, %$%^*&&&$. I just spent 45 minutes writing a full rebuttal and lost it in the last sentence. It may take me a while to stop screaming, so here’s the short version, minus the fun:

      2. A stretch to say that the key architect of Obamacare is stating the mindset of those who created, advocated and passed Obamacare. Wow.

      3. Rationalization #2.

      4. Same rationalization, the Official Obama “Yeah, well what about Bush?” variation, and an especially bad one, since it is itself a lie. I’m kind of suprised Democrats aren’t embarrassed to keep doing this. I guess you use what you got.

      5. If we did that, corrupt and lying leaders would stop trying to fool and deceive the public they are sworn to serve. Rationalization #1.

      6. Rationalization 32. The Unethical Role Model: “He/She would have done the same thing”. I even mention Lincoln! Here it is:

      This is a fantasy rationalization, and therefore a wonderfully versatile one. Just pick the great, famous and admired man or woman who you think would be most likely to engage in the wrongful conduct you are considering, and you will immediately feel good about it. If you are doing no worse than Churchill, of Gandhi, or Lincoln, or Martin Luther King or Princess Diana, after all, how bad can you be? This is a clever rationalization, but a transparent one. Andrew Jackson was a racist and a killer, but he isn’t admired for being a racist and a killer. FDR was vindictive and ruthless, but those aren’t the qualities that made him a great President. Lincoln, Jefferson, Oprah—it’s easy to cherry-pick flaws among the great and famous, but absurd to use those aspects of their personalities as objects of emulation. It is true: Clarence Darrow would have bribed a jury (and did); Arthur Miller would have neglected a disabled son; Jackie Kennedy would have lived a lie. The fact that we can find someone objectively remarkable who engaged in just about any crime or unethical act we can imagine merely proves that even the best of us fail to negotiate the challenges of life perfectly. It isn’t an excuse to stop trying to do the best we can in our own lives.

      Sometimes the ends DO justify the means. I guess you and Gruber really think passing a lazy, poorly drafted health insurance law that can’t and won’t work, that hurts middle class families and doesn’t lower health care costs using a lie is the same as ending the selling and enslaving of a race.

      7. And nobody knows who Valerie Jarrett is. So what? You covered Watergate. Who had heard of John Dean? Because he wasn’t known, his revelations about what the White House was saying and doing about Watergate should have been ignored? Seriously?

      8. Huh? Gruber admits the mandate was a tax. The President and his Party denied it was a tax. Some members of Congress joined in the lie—dishonest, corrupt—others never bothered to check—lazy, incompetent, irresponsible. Obama’s lawyer argued it WAS a tax, even after getting it passed by claiming it was not. Why is it hard to grasp that this is wrong?

      9. Advocating cheating is faculty misconduct that undermines higher education.

      10. So elected leaders lying to the members of the public who trust them to trick them into supporting policies and laws they would oppose if they were informed is no big deal to you, then. Because that’s what you just wrote, and I know you to be a smart, honorable man.

      I don’t get it.

  7. It’s long been an open secret that professional leftists hold their supporters in contempt. In a way, you can understand, as they have so successfully duped and swindled them for so long. Nor are they shamed about this in any way. To know shame, one must first possess a ethical code that transcends self interest and takes others into consideration. If you are a member of an “intellectual elite” and attempting to legitimize this status through the subtle subjugation of your “less cultured” fellows, then what checks to you have on the means you employ? Elitism is always to be found in any society, but it is the bane of any free one when it tries to make an actual ruling class out of itself… and by deceit and falsehood.

  8. What makes this especially heinous, is that Obama was the President promising that HIS would be the most transparent administration in the History of the USA. Kind of like, Clinton promising to have the most Moral administration in USA history! What a FREAKING farce! I knew it was all a lie, since I worked in Healthcare for decades, including 6 years with the Medicare Fiscal Intermediary in my state.

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