Is There a Wonk Bubble?

Journalist, columnist, and blogger Ezra Klein speaks about President Barack Obama's signature health care law at the Families USA’s 19th Annual Health Action Conference in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Journalist, columnist, and blogger Ezra Klein speaks about President Barack Obama’s signature health care law at the Families USA’s 19th Annual Health Action Conference in Washington. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

No, but there’s a Pundit Bubble…

Felix Salmon writes: Call it the Wonk Bubble. If you’re in the market for serious, empirical, quantitative analysis of national policy—or of just about anything else in the news these days—the East Coast Media Elite has you covered like never before.

The Washington Post has Wonkblog, and its Facebook-optimized cousin Know More, and will shortly unveil a “storytelling and policy” project to be run by economics policy correspondent Jim Tankersley. Meanwhile, a large number of Wonkblog and Know More alumni, led by former Wonkblogger-in-chief Ezra Klein, just launched Vox.com, a much more ambitious (if not yet fully formed) website seeking to explain the world in a truly web-native manner.

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His Most Excellent Majesty

EmperorNo

Ace writes: The other day, someone remarked to me about Obama: “The clothes have no emperor.”

Steyn has a similar view.

On Thursday, [King Obama] passed a new law at a press conference. George III never did that. But, having ordered America’s insurance companies to comply with Obamacare, the president announced that he is now ordering them not to comply with Obamacare. The legislative branch (as it’s still quaintly known) passed a law purporting to grandfather your existing health plan. The regulatory bureaucracy then interpreted the law so as to un-grandfather your health plan. So His Most Excellent Majesty has commanded that your health plan be de-un-grandfathered. That seems likely to work….

The most telling line, the one that encapsulates the gulf between the boundless fantasies of the faculty-lounge utopian and the messiness of reality, was this: “What we’re also discovering is that insurance is complicated to buy.” Gee, thanks for sharing, genius. Maybe you should have thought of that before you governmentalized one-sixth of the economy. By “we,” the president means “I.” Out here in the ruder provinces of his decrepit realm, we “folks” are well aware of how complicated insurance is. What isn’t complicated in the Sultanate of Sclerosis? But, as with so many other things, Obama always gives the vague impression that routine features of humdrum human existence are entirely alien to him….

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Thus Spake Obama

spake

The incompetence of our neo-monarchy 

Mark Steyn writes:  It is a condition of my admission to this great land that I am not allowed to foment the overthrow of the United States government. Oh, I signed it airily enough, but you’d be surprised, as the years go by, how often the urge to foment starts to rise in one’s gullet. Fortunately, at least as far as constitutional government goes, the president of the United States is doing a grand job of overthrowing it all by himself.

On Thursday, he passed a new law at a press conference. George III never did that. But, having ordered America’s insurance companies to comply with Obamacare, the president announced that he is now ordering them not to comply with Obamacare. The legislative branch (as it’s still quaintly known) passed a law purporting to grandfather your existing health plan. The regulatory bureaucracy then interpreted the law so as to un-grandfather your health plan. So His Most Excellent Majesty has commanded that your health plan be de-un-grandfathered. That seems likely to work. The insurance industry had three years to prepare for the introduction of Obamacare. Now the King has given them six weeks to de-introduce Obamacare.

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