Gruber and Iraq WMD: a tale of two deceptions

I Can't Speak

Okay, I admit it. My headline is a bit of a troll but now that you’re reading stick with me for a few minutes.

The Gruber story continues to be the gift that keeps on giving. While Dr. Gruber has been prolific in puffing up his role, the administration has pulled out all the stops to deny Gruber was anything other than one of the many, many Jon Gruber’s you can find in phonebooks across the nation. Our own Ben Howe gives a two-minute tour of the denials

At The Federalist (if you aren’t reading it you should be), Sean Davis takes aim at the Gruber Truthers who are trying to diminish his role. It is an epic takedown.

The fact remains

The CBO used Gruber’s model to score Obamacare.

Gruber was a paid adviser to CBO and two of his grad students assisted in scoring Obamacare.

Gruber was at the White House so frequently that he may have had a cot and sleeping bag stored there.

Now comes Chuck Todd. I don’t have any particular ax to grind with Todd. I’ve never seen his show and I’ve only seen him on occasional interviews. I drag him into this as an exemplar of the mindset that has put a virtual omerta on Grubergate. Via RealClearPolitics:

STEVE MALZBERG, HOST: Bias in the media.

CHUCK TODD, NBC: Yes, sir.

MALZBERG: Is there bias in the media on the left?

TODD: I think there is cultural bias is what I always talk about. The bias stems from the fact that the news media is headquartered in New York City. I’ve always felt that the cultural bias on issues on like religion, particularly social issues, where there is this feeling, middle America feels New York imposes more of its cultural values. I think that is what has created this perception that therefore all media leans left. I think culturally it is there. I don’t think it’s as pervasive as some believe on the right. I think that the cultural stuff is what makes it credible.

MALZBERG: Why did it take nine days once the Gruber video came out, you talked about it on Meet the Press just the other day, but the networks, nine days before they talked about it.

TODD: Well, you know —

MALZBERG: And now it’s a huge story!

TODD: I’m not saying it’s not a story. Look, I’m not in charge of any of those newscasts, but what is the news today of that? It’s a political story. Network news in general hasn’t been covering the political back and forth of Washington a lot lately. I don’t think this has to do with Gruber, specifically. I would just caution people on that.


Just as the Washington Post’s Sarah Kliff dismissed the trial of serial killer/abortionist Kermit Gosnell as a “local crime” story, not worthy of someone who covers policy

Now Todd hints that the Gruber story is “political back and forth” and has nothing to do with the policy that now controls 1/6th of the nation’s GDP.

Let’s go back to 2004 and the Iraq War. Compare the level of press interest in the location of Iraqi WMD (weapons we now know not only existed but actually injured a number of American soldiers), another example of “political back and forth.” Or how about the utterly trumped up story of Valerie Plame that, in its worst light, had no policy implications whatsoever and only served as a means to attack President Bush. Where, then, was this ineffable separation of “policy” (which we all know network news covers rigorously) from “political back and forth” (which they ignore)?

What Todd is rationalizing it the treatment that news anchor Melissa Francis got by CNBC management when she pointed out that the Obamacare numbers simply didn’t add up.

Fox Business Network anchor Melissa Francis said she was “silenced” by CNBC when management told her she was “disrespecting the office of the president” by reporting about Obamacare.

Francis highlighted Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber’s comments about the “stupidity” of American voters and the administration intentionally misleading the public about what’s in the law and said in her experience, some of the media helped to hide the truth about the law.

“It’s shocking, but it doesn’t surprise me because when I was at CNBC, I pointed out to my viewers that the math of Obamacare simply didn’t work,” Francis said Friday. “Not the politics by the way, but just the basic math. And when I did that, I was silenced.”

Francis pointed out that she has an economics degree from Harvard University and said she was simply trying to explain the math behind Obamacare to her viewers — the same math Gruber has candidly admitted the administration tried to hide.

“I said on the air that you couldn’t add millions of people to the system and force insurance companies to cover their pre-existing conditions without raising the price on everyone else,” Francis said. “I pointed out that it couldn’t possibly be true that if you like your plan, you can keep it. That was a lie. And in facts, millions of people had their plans canceled.”

Francis said she was called into a meeting with CNBC management (she would not specify names) and told she was “disrespecting the office of the president.”


Put aside for a moment that it is Todd’s parent company, NBC, who chasitized Francis. Put aside that Jeffrey Immelt,  the CEO of GE — which owns NBC and controls Todd’s career — actually scolded reporters who work for him for being “anti-Obama.” The media is heavily invested in Obama. As his reign of fear and incompetence winds down they will be working overtime to create a Mount Rushmore-sized legacy for him. Reporting on the stark duplicity used in reordering America’s health industry does not serve that agenda.



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