"Which is worse? The wolf who cries before eating the lamb or the wolf who does not."— Leo Tolstoy

Friday, October 28, 2011

Super Hypocrite Criticizes Super Committee's Super Secrecy

Transparency For Me But Not For Thee

Although Nancy Pelosi insists she hasn't been shut out of the super committee negotiations, she continues to whine about the super committee's super secret closed-door meetings: “At some point, the discussion has to be more public,”  Pelosi plaintively pontificated to Politico.

Hearing Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi complain about transparency in the legislative process is just about as absurd as if Bull Connor had complained about racism in the Jim Crow South. It wasn't that long ago that Majority Leader Pelosi presided over the process of drafting and negotiating the Obama Administration's landmark health care legislation. The conference committee negotiations on Obamacare, which were conducted entirely in secret with the exclusion of all Republicans from the meetings, were widely criticized as the least transparent legislative process in the modern history of Congress. The Washington Examiner went all the way back to the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 to find a comparison.

Unprincipled Rectitude:  Even a Broken Clock is Right Twice a Day.

Of course, Nancy Pelosi is correct in calling for an end to the closed door deliberations and for a more open and transparent legislative process from the Super Committee. Unfortunately, Pelosi's rectitude is not based on a principled belief in transparency and open government. Instead, it is based on her exclusion from the process. If ex-Speaker Pelosi were one of the cool kids you wouldn't hear any complaints about Super Committee Secrecy.  Instead, she would be declaring that "there has never been a more open process." 

All Dishwashers are Equal but Some Dishwashers Are More Equal Than Others.

The lack of transparency in Obamacare has continued as the Administration refused to release information about the deliberative process used to grant thousands of waivers to the health care law's stringent requirements The waivers are granted to companies, unions and other organizations   who offer affordable health insurance or prescription drug coverage with limited benefits and can establish that offering the benefits required by Obamacare would be a "hardship."
Click on the links below for a list of approved and denied waiver applicants organized by type:

The Obama administration began to release some of the waiver documentation to Judicial Watch in September, nearly nine months after a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit was filed seeking the release of the records.

The primary recipients of these waivers have been industries and labor unions that have donated heavily to Obama's campaigns.   As I researched this issue I was disappointed to find that all of the litigation and reporting on waiver secrecy has been by partisan sources.  As usual, many nominally non-partisan watch dog groups that would have been screaming about such a lack of transparency during the Bush Administration are silent when the secrecy is being practiced by the Obama Administration.  

It is understandable why Pelosi has been silent on this continuing failure in government transparency, given the fact that 20% of the Obamacare waivers granted in April of this year went to luxury restaurants, resorts and hotels in her Congressional district.  So while the dishwashers who work at Café des Amis, Boboquivari’s restaurant, Café Mason, the Franciscan Crab restaurant - and the maids who work at the four-star hotels Campton Place and Hotel Nikko  - all know that they won't be receiving the benefits of Obamacare, they may never know why.

The reason that full transparency and diclosure of the delberative process underlying these waivers is so important is because its chief proponents keep lying about the public policy implications of the waivers.  The video below is of Nancy Pelosi stating that the waivers are unimportant because they mostly involve small companies and will therefore have a negligible impact on the overall goals of the legislation:

Little companies? Such as your average mon-and-pop outfits like McDonald’s, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Jack in the Box,  Cracker Barrel​, Ruby Tuesday’s, and  Waffle House?

No comments:

Post a Comment