WASHINGTON, December 10, 2014 — The hearing on December 9 by Jon Gruber in front of the House Oversight Committee would have been all over the news channels if it wasn’t for Diane Feinstein conveniently releasing the Democratic Senator’s report on issues resolved several years ago. However, the report about CIA activities which were thoroughly discussed, debated and finally ended in 2006, dominated the news just as Gruber was doing it to us again.
Recall that it was Jon Gruber, who designed much of the Affordable Care Act and then admitted to deceiving the American public so that the act could be passed. He reasoned that if he told the truth, the majority of Americans would not support the law. This was a law that he believed should be enacted regardless of what the majority of Americans wanted.
His actions led pundits to coin the term “Gruberized” to describe a situation where a learned authority presents information to the public that he knows is not correct. He does so in order to convince people to support something they really do not support.
Eventually Gruberization became synonymous deception. Most Americans began to look at many aspects of the Obama Administration and wondered just how many times they had been gruberized by the President. It began with the shovel ready jobs that were not so shovel ready, the good investments in solar energy that eventually went bad, the Fast and Furious scandal, the the IRS corruption, the the VA disaster and the Benghazi “a video started it” deception. And with Obamacare we were gruberized a number of times starting with the ability to keep your doctor, the ability to keep your policy and the promise of a $2,500 annual saving.
On Tuesday, Jon Gruber himself gruberized us again. Even after he swore to tell us the truth, he managed more deception. He claimed, for instance, that he was not an architect of Obamacare. That’s a gruberization.
An architect is generally defined as a person who plans, designs and oversees the construction of a building. Using that definition, Jon Gruber was certainly an architect of the Affordable Care Act. As with any large complex structure there are a team of architects working. Jon Gruber was part of that team as he provided data to draw the plans, gave input to design the complex system and watched over as it was built.
When Gruber testified that he uses economic simulation models, he is saying that he uses given inputs to determine the likely outcome so the writers of the law can construct it to reach certain goals. In other words, his input was used to design the entire system. That makes him an architect.
Another deception occurred when Gruger was asked about the amount he was paid by federal and state taxpayers to provide his deceptive information. He said he did not recall. That is difficult to believe.
Mr. Gruber is an extremely intelligent man. He can recall the intricacies of formulas used in those sophisticated models of his. He call easily recall most of the knowledge in the textbooks he writes on Public Finance. And he likely can recall how much money he made last year, if asked.
But he said he could not recall how much government has paid to him. Instead he used some legalese to wiggle out of answering the question.
Maybe the biggest deception came when he apologized for the American people for calling them stupid. He said he was sorry and that he didn’t mean it when he said that “if you are a state and don’t set up an exchange, that means your citizens don’t get their tax credits.”
He said that he was “speaking glibbly” and that he was “conjecturing outside my area of expertise.” The definition of glib includes insincere and shallow as well as lacking depth and substance. With the depth of knowledge that Mr. Gruber has, it is hard to imagine that he lacks depth or that he is shallow and lacks substance. That only leaves insincere. And I guess people that deceive are insincere.
At some point everyone is going to have to tell the truth and take responsibility for what they have done. Our future depends on it. In the meantime, watch out for those gruberizations.