I subscribe to a fairly large number of conservative, libertarian, and traditional Catholic periodicals, mostly monthlies – not that I can possibly read them all cover to cover, but at least I get to pick and choose articles of interest and support the “cause” (or “causes”) as well. The problem is that right now I feel like I'm caught in some sort of time warp, because the issues that have been coming in over the past week or so – mostly dated April – all convey the same picture of ObamaCare, namely that it's doomed to failure, and what the impact is going to be on Obama, his administration, his legacy, the Democrats, the Republicans, conservatives, etc. All very interesting, of course – except that the premise was totally wrong, because ObamaCare has not only passed, but with flying colors. So what were all of these people thinking? We know how risky it is to count votes before the actual voting occurs – and liberals in Washington are unmatched at making last-minute “deals” (AKA “bribes”) to get collectivist legislation passed. And the “on the fence” legislators may not respect themselves in the morning, but by then it will be too late; they'll be “on the record” as having supported yet another liberal incursion into the lives and liberties of Americans.
Maybe all of these opinionators were thinking of the “conservative Democrats” (assuming such an animal can even exist anywhere on the planet)... or the “anti-abortion Democrats”. But they were pacified by Obama's solemn promise that ObamaCare would not open the floodgates for more taxpayer-funded abortions; he would see to it. Which he seems to have done – except that he can take that promise back with an additional stroke of the pen any time he likes. I compare it to the used car salesman who tells you to go ahead and sign on the dotted line, and he'll fill in the numbers later. Abortion being the holy grail of liberals/Democrats, they are not about to give it up for any reason, least of all some vague promise made in the heat of political battle.
Another point they invariably make – or try to – is that ObamaCare is directly contrary to “the will of the American people”, or the voters, or whoever. But how can that be, when a majority – or at least a plurality – voted for Obama, knowing full well that nationalizing health care was at the top of his list of priorities? And how can it be when the Democrats acquired majorities in both houses, again courtesy of the voters? Unless we suspect that every election that a Democrat won in 2008 was stolen – not theoretically impossible, but unlikely, in my opinion. And besides, the voters don't have to be avidly “for” something, just as long as they're not against it. Will the legislators who voted for ObamaCare really be “punished” this fall (for those up for re-election) – or will the parade have moved on to different issues by then? And of course ObamaCare is not truly “the law of the land” (a favorite phrase among liberals these days, for some reason) until all of the lawsuits already being prepared have tried, and failed, to get all or part of it rescinded. Plenty of other massive programs down through the years, going back at least as far as the New Deal, have been passed and implemented with great fanfare and celebration, only to be broken up on the shoals of the legal system, which is not yet a total captive of the executive branch. And – not to forget – Congress can always change its mind. ObamaCare could come up for another vote next week and be defeated – unlikely, but at least possible; that's just the way the system is set up.
So in any case, the conservative print media are experiencing a bit of a “Dewey Beats Truman” moment right now – and one could say it was foolish of them to count these Easter chicks before they were hatched. True enough, and it shows how wishful thinking can corrupt even the most “fair and balanced” journalism. But they will regroup, dust themselves off, and charge back into the fray – on health care or some other issue. And we do need their labors. Now if they could just stop confusing their enthusiasm with reality they might be able to contribute even more.