WASHINGTON – MIT professor Jonathan Gruber is the most recent example of the supreme and dangerous arrogance of second rate intellectuals.
In the context of an academic meeting held a year ago, (and obviously unaware that his remarks were recorded), he said that of course there was deliberate deception in the way in which Obamacare, a piece of historic legislation to which he contributed as a senior advisor to the administration, had to be presented to the public in a deliberately obscure and misleading way. “Lack of transparency –he said– is a huge political advantage”.
Do not tell the truth, because the voters will not understand it
If you had told America the truth, namely that this is a tax so that the rich would subsidize health care for the poor, it would have been impossible to sell it politically. In the same context of an august academic meeting he said a few other revealing things about the stupidity of the American public.
A good law
Bottom line, according to Gruber, Obamacare is a very good piece of legislation. Of course, it must be good because he helped design it. But –you see– the general public being too unsophisticated to grasp its value, it was perfectly OK to tell America that this gigantic, (and in the end hopelessly flawed –this is my opinion), “reform” was really something else.
This deceit was necessary in order to have the law passed.
Hubris and presumption
I did say in a different occasion that Obamacare is the triumph of hubristic intellectuals who think they know best and who assume that they can regulate anything and obtain desired outcomes if they are only given the power to do so.
Well, now we have to add arrogance and presumption to hubris. Gruber did say in the same meeting that deception was quite alright, in as much as it allowed the proponents of the law to achieve their (noble) goals.
And with this statement Gruber proves to be arrogant, hubristic and also unintelligent. This health care reform law, while it has some good elements, overall is a disaster. Its unintended consequences include employers who reduce the hours of their workers, and other job providers who will not hire more workers in order not to be obliged to give them costly health insurance. Besides, self-employed professionals have seen their health insurance premiums doubled. And there is a lot more.
But Gruber obviously does not see any of this. Or, if he does, he does not appreciate how all these new burdens inhibit economic activities and therefore growth in an already slow-moving economy.
In his utopian “Republic” Plato established that there would be absolute rulers. But we could rest assured that they would rule well and wisely because they would be true philosophers motivated only by the desire to pursue noble goals that would benefit all citizens.
In our present day (real) Republic we are not so lucky. We are ruled with the help of presumptuous MIT academics, working with an “I know what is good for you” president, who concocted a monstrosity, managed to have it narrowly passed by Congress by misrepresenting what it included, and still today say that this law represents a very good change.
Such is the megalomania of these pseudo-intellectuals that they cannot even see the damage they caused. Since it was their idea, it must be perfect, all evidence to the contrary notwithstanding.