The Big Think

November 5, 2013

Why Credibility Matters

Filed under: Politics — jasony @ 1:26 pm

Lying About Lies: Why Credibility Matters

Watch the video of Obama reinventing history with the “what-we-said-was” construction. Notice how he is looking at notes. Remarkably, this was not an off-the-cuff remark; it was written, reviewed, and approved by senior White House officials, then recited by the president. An orchestrated deceit.

Why didn’t Obama add their caveats during his reelection campaign? His aides debated it. Some argued that the president had to shoot straight with the public. Others feared that he public wouldn’t understand the nuance and GOP rival Mitt Romney would use it to his advantage.

The cynics won. The truth was buried. And the man who promised to run the most transparent administration in history participated in a lie.

…this president is toying with a fragile commodity: his credibility. Once Americans stop believing in Obama, they will stop listening to him. They won’t trust government to manage health care. And they will wonder what happened to the reform-minded leader who promised never to lie to them.

Many people would argue that he was never there in the first place. A growing number of people are realizing that a government that can’t even design a website has no business mucking about in 1/6th of the economy.

I’ve received a few well intentioned emails from friends who seem to think that even though health care “reform” has been a universally acknowledged debacle, somehow the lies we were told and the deception that had to take place were excusable because they were for some Greater Good. That the policies we’re seeing eliminated from the market were never good enough anyway (an argument that completely disregards our freedom to choose what is best for ourselves and fits cozily into Bill Maher’s position of “yes, the President lied, but American’s are stupid and needed to be lied to for their own good”).

What makes me the saddest about these earnest friends is their inability to stand on the principles of freedom that our country was founded upon. To stand on the long-term concept of self-reliance and personal responsibility. The freedom to enter into a contract without Big Brother looking over your shoulder. The freedom to choose not to engage in economic activity if we deem it unaffordable or not right for us. And most importantly, the freedom to live in a country where the government does not have a say in an increasing slice of our daily lives. It’s embarrassing to me that they would be so short sighted as to give up their personal freedom for a little temporary safety, and maddening that they’re not educated enough to see that the people they’re railing against, the ones they think are being close-minded or traditional or extreme, are the very ones who are focusing not on the small issues of “what can I get from Big Brother for free?” but instead are looking at the larger issues of liberty, constitutionality, and sustainable freedom. Arguing with these folks is an empty, futile, depressing exercise.

The ACA has been exposed as a titanic failure, not just measured in website crashes but in actuarial impossibilities. It would be hilarious to watch supporters’ efforts to put lipstick on this pig if it weren’t for the fact that we are all going to suffer, and badly, for their ignorant shortsightedness.

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