“Monty Pythonâ€”are they still going? I mean, who wants to see that again really? It was really funny in the sixtiesâ€¦ Still, a bunch of wrinkly old men trying to relive their youth and make a load of money, I mean, the best one died years ago!”
Dick Morris gloatingly notes that HHS has quietly essentially repealed the individual mandate, Obamacare’s single most controversial feature.
In a policy retreat that is little-known and virtually uncovered in media circles (except for the Wall Street Journal), the Obama administration has effectively postponed, for three years, any requirement that those whose health care policies were canceled or will be canceled from having to buy health insurance.
This regulatory decision, coupled with the delays granted to employers large and small in the mandate that they cover their workers, so truncates Obamacare as to amount to its a virtual repeal.
Specifically, by delaying the individual mandate for three years, Obama has given the GOP everything it sought in its abortive government shutdown in October 2013.
Now, those whose health care policies were canceled can opt out of the individual mandate â€” and not pay the fine for being uncovered â€” simply by checking a box on the form.
Under the new rules, according to the Wall Street Journal, â€œall you need to do is fill out a form attesting that your plan was canceled and that you â€˜believe that the plan options available in the [Obamacare] Marketplace in your area are more expensive than your canceled health insurance policyâ€™ or â€˜you consider other available policies unaffordable.â€™
You can even opt out of the requirement to buy new insurance if â€œyou experienced another hardship in obtaining health insurance.â€ Documentation? The regulation only requires that you provide it â€œif possible.â€
Effectively, this means that anyone who wants an exemption from Obamacare who previously had a policy that was canceled can get one simply by asking for it. No proof. No documentation.
The policy retreat is the latest in a series of administration attempts to backpedal on the law and its requirements as their reality dawns on voters in swing states and on Democratic senators trying to entice them to back their re-election.
The previous step back was an announcement last week that the one-year moratorium on cancellations would be extended to three years, effectively pushing it out past the 2016 elections. …
Altogether, the retreat of this president from the enforcement of his signature program is breathtaking and can only be summed up as a repeal, or postponement of the bulk of the Obamacare lawâ€™s provisions.
Can Obama repeal and postpone his way to keeping a Senate majority in the fall? Weâ€™ll see.
Steven Hayward (the new contributor at PowerLine) is doing an excellent job.
Yesterday, he linked a new paper from the Cultural Cognition Project at Yale University, whose conclusions will not make liberals happy.
The conventional explanation for controversy over climate change emphasizes impediments to public understanding: Limited popular knowledge of science, the inability of ordinary citizens to assess technical information, and the resulting widespread use of unreliable cognitive heuristics to assess risk. A large survey of U.S. adults (N = 1540) found little support for this account. On the whole, the most scientifically literate and numerate subjects were slightly less likely, not more, to see climate change as a serious threat than the least scientifically literate and numerate ones.
Hayward rubbed salt in liberal wounds by quoting himself in an earlier posting, in which he compared climate change allegations to a poem by T.S. Eliot:
â€œWhat might have been and has been / Point to one end, which is always present,â€ Eliot continues in Burnt Norton. Which reminds me of the climate record (â€œtime future contained in time pastâ€). We donâ€™t understand the climate past with reasonable precision, as the intense debate about the â€œhockey stickâ€ graph showed, and the computer models predicting a 2 to 5 degree rise in the future are clearly riddled with large uncertainties, given the range of prospective temperatures they spit out. No matter. â€œWhat is always presentâ€ today is the cocksure certainty that catastrophic global warming is occurring, and damn the weatherman. Think of it as the ultimate modernist free-verse, only without literary allusions â€œan abstraction / Remaining a perpetual possibility / Only in a world of speculation.â€
Hayward capped it all off by remarking “now the whole farce is starting to remind me of Monty Pythonâ€™s â€œdead parrotâ€ sketchâ€”the climate crisis isnâ€™t dead, itâ€™s just restinâ€™.”
A superbly apt comparison to the position of advocates of Warmism in the aftermath of the Climategate Scandal, two old-fashioned winters, and the re-emergence of speculation about diminished solar activity and impending severe cooling.