Guest Post: The Taxpayer Funded PR Campaign For Obamacare Begins

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by James E. Miller of the Ludwig von Mises Institute of Canada,


Only in public schools and universities is the fairy tale still taught that governments are representative of the people.  The blue collared man on the street realizes the chips are stacked against him.  For those who don’t have political connections, the pseudo fascist system that is still referred to as “capitalism” in the U.S. is akin to a casino game of chance.  That is, the odds are always in the house’s favor.  The house is the federal leviathan and its equivalent at the state and local level as well as the big, cartelized industries which feed off government protection.  As comedian George Carlin accurately observed:

It’s a big club and you ain’t in it!

Even the catalyst for the American Revolution, the Boston Tea Party, was not a grand political statement on the unjustifiable nature of taxation without representation.  At the time, founding father John Hancock was the richest smuggler in North America.  The British Parliament lowered the import tax on tea in 1773 which cut into Hancock’s profits.  According to economic historian Gary North:

The Tea Party had stopped the unloading of the tea by throwing privately owned tea off a privately owned ship – a ship in competition with Hancock’s ships. The Boston Tea Party was in fact a well-organized protest against lower prices stemming from lower taxes.

The state, by virtue of its monopoly on predation, has always functioned as a power center to be exploited by the elite few.  Politicians deceive their way to public office by promising voters the world while pocketing the campaign funds to do the bidding of their corporate masters.  For all his populist rhetoric, President Obama was bankrolled into office by Wall Street; namely Goldman Sachs.  This is why no top financial executives have been charged for fraud stemming from the housing bubble.  It’s the same reason he backed the granting of immunity to telecommunication companies for illegally aiding Washington in warrant-less domestic wiretapping of private communications. Obama travels the country on the taxpayer’s dime to convince Americans he is still the fighter for the middle class.  The more gullible of voters will believe the lie time and time again despite his administration being staffed by Wall Street alum.  They are infatuated with the idea of being part of something meaningful.  This naivety en masse is the true aim of the state.  It ensures for the least amount of objection and more opportunity for exploitation by the establishment.

The President’s “universal health care” scheme is yet another example of the incestual relationship between big government and big business.

In what can only be described as a modern day case of Orwellian irony, the Health and Human Services Department has awarded a $20 million contract to public relations firm Porter Novelli to begin promoting the Affordable Care Act.  From The Hill newspaper:

The Health and Human Services Department has signed a $20 million contract with a public-relations firm to highlight part of the Affordable Care Act.


The new, multimedia ad campaign is designed to educate the public about how to stay healthy and prevent illnesses, an HHS official said.


The campaign was mandated by the Affordable Care Act and must describe the importance of prevention while also explaining preventive benefits provided by the healthcare law. The law makes many preventive services available without a co-pay or deductible, and provides new preventive benefits to Medicare patients.

To sum up this disconnect between reality and fantasy: the myth goes that government is beholden to the people.  Elected representatives only ever act in the best interest of their constituents.  This is why Congress enacted a health care reform bill that was opposed by a majority of the American public.  But of course the reform was for their own good.  The public wasn’t allowed to know the final ramifications of Obamacare before it was passed.  The truth is never meant for the little people.  That’s why then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi declared “we have to pass the bill so that you can…find out what is in it.”  In other words, “obey us unconditionally.”

Again, this whole affair was supposedly done in the public’s interest.  Average Joe just doesn’t understand what is good for him.  How dare he question the intention of his political leaders!

Now a promotional campaign must be undertaken to convince the people that this new frontier in health care is a great step forward to more affordability.  Taxpayers only have to pick up the $20 million tab to be told about the good their government delivers to them.

What the ad campaign won’t reveal is that the Affordable Care Act was never the product of well-meaning souls but was crafted exclusively by the health industry itself.  The bill is virtually identical to a plan outlined by the trade association American’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) in 2009.  A former Vice President to Wellpoint Inc. was revealed to have written the original bill in 2009.  Stocks of health care companies actually shot up as the bill made its way through Congress.  The reasoning was quite simple since the bill acts as a huge subsidy to the industry.  With millions poised to be forced into buying insurance, Howard Dean was dead on when he called the bill “an insurance company’s dream.”

Like compulsory vaccinations, the individual mandate is nothing but an industry bailout.  Under the guise of protecting the right of citizens, government merely acts as a puppet of entrenched special interests.  Politicians and bureaucrats further advance their dream of centrally managing more of the economy while simultaneously appeasing big business.  Competition is inhibited with regulatory red tape as the big players continue to rake in income and market share.  The state looks out for itself and its financiers only.

With Obamacare, the middle class will end up being liable for yet another entitlement program that, like any other government initiative, will cost more than was initially estimated.  Worse yet, they will be bombarded with advertisements they paid for which attempt to convince them that Uncle Sam has once again delivered prosperity with a badge and a gun.

The disheartening part is some Americans will be foolish enough to actually believe it.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Oh regional Indian's picture

What has been which way for 120 years? UCC? Keeping people alive just because? Hospitals filled with cadavers on life support? Preemies with no hope of a decent life being kept alive in incubators? Just so they can be lifelong patients?


You're just an establishment clown. 


CCanuck's picture

Just ask'n....What/when was the last cure for anything? I agree doctors are underpaid, when compared to a lot of other professions. However the Medical field seems to be stuck, in the way of new cures. Feels like doctor's are mechanics sometimes, I guess it really depends on your personal GP. I have to say it feels like a lot less value for that 17% of GDP.

Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

.man took penicillin for 100yrs for almost everything until these super anti biotics like cypro, augmentin et al appeared with the advent of the bio technology industry.

Does AIDS count? Although it is not cured it was a certain death sentence not that long ago.

Not even just cures, it is procedures, consider a typical gall bladder removal 30yrs ago involved significant surgery, days of discomfort and recovery and higher risk of infection vs now where is it largely none of the above.  Or the testing, man is not sicker than ever despite reports to the contrary, the tests are better than ever which leads to earlier care and higher success rates.

Starving medical R&D funding is devolution personified and largely what happens with nationalized care. R&D money is taken from the leading edge to try and maintain the status quo.

The inevitable problem with these threads is two fold,

insurance was supposed to be for catastrophic loss only,

and something like 90% of the avg American's health costs are incurred in the last 9 months of their lives.

So the notion that the everyday doctor is in some way, shape or form responsible is ludicrous to begin with. They bear responsibility for some piddly amount of any avg Americans total healthcare bill even though they are largely the first line of defense.

Further 90% of the US population has insurance of which something like 85% are content with their plan. Obamacare creates 160 federal agencies so 5% more will have insurance.  While the insureds already pay for the uninsureds via higher costs, now same will happen except the government will take a cut.  It is ludicrous beyond belief to expect that to result in superior, more accessable or more affordable care, it almost by default has to result in the opposite.

Gully Foyle's picture

Xkwisetly Paneful

".man took penicillin for 100yrs"

The fuck you say

The discovery of penicillin is attributed to Scottish scientist and Nobel laureate Alexander Fleming in 1928

I find it relly ironic that in a topic mainly regarding stupid people, that someone gets the History substantially wrong and considers themselves intelligent.

Divine Wind's picture

Dat becuz da truf don't mattah none no moh.


blunderdog's picture

    Why does the US have the highest survival rates for the most common forms of cancer?

    Why does the US bring more premies into the world than any other civilization?

Because US government's been subsidizing both R&D and distribution for (conservatively) 50 years.

It's a rich country, we poured enormous boatloads of tax money into the medical industry. 

We bought an enormous amount of "progress."

Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

By the way, the villification of the gp is no better than the villification of farmers.

remember? how dare they pay them to NOT farm even though they haven't done that in 30yrs and the family farmer is headed the way of extinction but they are the villains.

It is no different here.

 could not be further off base if that was the plan.

Gully Foyle's picture


"yes MD PhD are the ones who are actually curing anything"

What fucking alternate reality do you live in where anything has been cured since the Salk vaccine?

Modern medicine is all about MANAGEMENT not CURE!

Oh regional Indian's picture

Wrong GullyDouchebagfoil.

Cure is for keeping dead meat edible.

you are looking for the word "heal".

Modern medicine is ALL ABOUT THE CURE. Run for the cure, run for the cure.


Divine Wind's picture

There is far far far far far less profit in a CURE than there is in MANAGEMENT.


Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

They are currently paying something like $86 for the most commonly coded office visit,

any idea how many patients a normal GP has to see a day to breakeven at $86 a shot?

have successfully turned primary care into McCare by screwing the general practitioners through anti competitive state health insurance cartels and by paying bottom dollar for the most common bills.

which has led the best and brighest to pursue lab careers and not become attending physicians.

and has led an exodus out of smaller offices to being on hospital payrolls.

To the detriment of the entire human race.

Keep up the good work.

The entire problem is that insurance was designed to prevent catastrophic loss not become a tool for the government and insurance industry to profit off of pushing paper.   

AldousHuxley's picture

lab careerists got laid off in last batch of pharma downsizing.

even greedy CEOs don't have the same job security like a doctor. even CEO's compete globally with Chinese and Indian CEO's whose business is even mroe subsidized by their own governments.

Even banksters have to compete globally with hong king, london, paris, singapore, Tokyo, etc.


Doctors do not have global labor competition. and all the smart ones want the "lifestyle" specialities where they can maximize income per work. Doctors ARE government employees. Without governmen healthcare subsidies, half of people wouldn't be able to afford healthcare and doctors would price themselves out of business. Like wall st, call government supported industry for what it is and nationalize it along with scrutiny of government employee salaries. It is not capitalism. Their high salaries are not market driven when you artificially limit supply of doctors by restricting residency funding.


i'm all for good doctors getting compensated fairly. Right now, doctors are just like politicians....they take percentage of GDP for themselves no matter what their actual contributions are.

wall st., military, government workers, doctors, state subsidized industries are all riding on the coat tales of those who do compete globally.


they claim to save lives, like CEOs claim company revenue increase all on their efforts.


WHY DO HUMAN MECHANICS GET PAID MORE THAN VETS? same skill.  because government pays for humen mechanic services.




AldousHuxley's picture

doctors have lowest forms of intelligence....rote memorization.


economics is about supply and demand


nothing to do with hard you work unless you want to pay $1M to some dumbass who just dug a ditch on your yard 24hours straight.



people will still attempt to become doctors for job security alone even if incomes were lower than other jobs.

guinea's picture

Dude, just go away.  Peddle your filth at DKos. 

SilverIsKing's picture

He must have never watched House. That dude was smart and earned every penny he was paid.

Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

No global competition? Odd since people fly here from elsewhere for care.

Hasn't changed, the FED pays something like $86/visit for the most commonly coded visit.

How many patients a day at $86 a piece does the avg GP have to see just to breakeven?

You're all the smart ones quip is 100% off base, the smart ones stopped going to medical school as the idea of becoming rich practicing medicine became laughable.

Oh regional Indian's picture

Ever heard of MEdical Tourism x?

Medical tourists come to places like India (tons of them from the US, literally, fat, waddling tons) to get even dental work.

Now if an air-ticket + the risk of a 3rd world hospital (Heaven forbid) is better then in-country care, I guess the problem is quite clear to see, ne?


Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

Way to contradict yourself in three posts.

Which is it?

India doesn't provide jackshit in innovation because there aren't enough on the medical care gravytrain even though there is a billion plus people,

or they actually get more than their share thanks  to the tune of tons of medical tourists?

WTFU already. Have resource rich countries with numerous times the population of the US that obviously need medical care and yet provide jack in the way of leading edge innovation. Somewhat similar to the oil rich middle east.  Have people, have resources, have nothing to show for it other than idiotic  platitudes and ludicrous rationalizations.

Good job.



AnAnonymous's picture

What is that innovation stuff?

You need to innovate to provide a common healthcare service?

You need to innovate to provide dental care, facial surgery and the rest?

Gully Foyle's picture

Oh regional Indian

"literally, fat, waddling tons"

They only look fat to you because you live in a nation starving to death. Start eating the cows and it becomes very hard to tell your people from the tourists, well the nonwhite ones.

Lednbrass's picture

Are you honestly trying to claim that people fly from the US to India for dental work? Really?

You are batshit fucking crazy or a complete liar. Airfare alone costs as much or more than to get just about any dental procedure done.

Oh regional Indian's picture

I'm not talking about getting a cavity filled here dumbshit. Google "Medical Tourism".

Airfare, return fare is a $1,000 dollars give or take.

You've obviously done all your travelling with the Imperial Army perhaps?

lednbrass...says it all, is that your brain and balls you were speaking of?


Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

So according to these delusions, one should be able to import mass medical staff internationally dirt cheap and run everyone else out of business.  kind of weird how it is pretty much the opposite as half of the math and science degrees flee the country upon graduation. It's really odd, doctors being overpaid in the US and all, why go somewhere else and be underpaid?



AnAnonymous's picture

It's really odd, doctors being overpaid in the US and all, why go somewhere else and be underpaid?


Because of the absence of work?

Topical avatar, in the end.

otto skorzeny's picture

try getting a union firefighter or cop to pay 1 penny for their healthcare-they're "heroes" so the rest of us slobs "owe" them everything

AldousHuxley's picture

yup. they claim their jobs are dangerous.


well then why the hell their management getting even more money out of taxes with $200k/year pensions at age 50?????


wonder what the need is for firefighters anymore. you hear more about murders than a house catching a fire these days.


bring in chinese and indians to flood police academy.

BlueCollaredOne's picture

The crime has gotten so bad here in parts of DC that the firefighters have been deployed to act as policemen. They are asked to drive around with their hook and ladders, and ambulances so the community "feels their presence".

That being said I live across the street from a firehouse in the city. One night I was walking my dog and one of the firemen approached me to talk. Long story short he told me that he hasn't fought a fire in "37 days, and couldn't wait until summer for a few brushfires.".

Firemen should be a volunteer position.

CCanuck's picture

Most of Ontario, Canada is vols....only in cities, is fireman paid position, great benifits and 4 days on 4 days off for most of em.

Not an easy job, Upper management and admin costs make it a big nut to crack...9/11 sure helped expand  the budgets.



blunderdog's picture

The nice thing about the volunteers is they're "free."  The problem with the volunteers is that they're not responsible for anything. 

If they don't like you, your house may burn down.  If they run over your kid on the way to a fire, it's largely a matter of luck whether they can help with the medical expenses.

Gully Foyle's picture

otto skorzeny

You want to run into a burning building to rescue people for no bennies?

Even though I loathe the modern police attitude, they still tend to get shot quite a bit.

I think you picked the wrong two groups to whine about bennies.

You should have focused on politicians.

Calmyourself's picture

Damn near got killed snatching Mussolini didn't ya..  Under that set of criteria 7 Eleven clerks should make more and get better pensions as they catch much more incoming fire than cops..

philipat's picture

The reason for the individual mandate is actually to stop the middle classes from thinking about alternatives. The other part of the problem is that there remains a misconception that US healthcare is the best in the world when it clearly is not. The US spends 17& of GDP on healthcare (And that;s only covering 75% of the population, which is more than double that of other developed countries which provide healthcare for the whole population and actually have better outcomes than the US (Infant mortality etc.)

Actually, the way to go for the middle classes is to self-insure via a dedicted medical savings account. You don't need healthcare cover for simple things. Self-medication using a combination of generic medicines at WalMart and, if necessary, brandname drugs purchased in Canada (At less than one third of the US cost for drugs manufactured in the US) is a practical alternative. For more serious conditions get on a plane to Thailand or Malaysia where very good healthcare is available at a fraction of US costs. There are also many Global Insurance policies which provide much better value providing the US is excluded. For obvious reasons.

 Now, back to the individual mandate.............................................

AnAnonymous's picture

Self-medication using a combination of generic medicines at WalMart and, if necessary, brandname drugs purchased in Canada (At less than one third of the US cost for drugs manufactured in the US) is a practical alternative.

You know, it is quite common for US citizens to claim that in the current situation, intelligent, educated US citizens weight quite a lot.

I wonder how many decades before the wrong prognosis, the inadequate medication leads to various strands US citizens' intelligence can not handle.

Already an issue in the making but one must say that on this one, maybe because it would jeopardize themselves too with no third recipient to push the disaster on, US citizens try not to kick the can too much.

tsuki's picture

Medical holidays are one of the few growing industries in the US, and if the hospital is approved, often US medical insurance will pay the full amount less air fare.  Many middle class people are outsourcing their medical care. 

Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

Those poor dumbfucks!

Shame of it is, the doctors are all largely educated via the same schools and the same curriculum.

Kind of like largely the nations teachers being educated identically from sea to sea.

Kind of like the idea that children used to have one toy and now have closets full.

Kind of like families used to maybe have one car and now have driveways full.

Kind of like considering obese folks who own  cars and homes "poverty stricken."

Promotion of the idea of material poverty which includes healthcare and education is preposterously farcical but keep on, keeping on.


TWSceptic's picture

Oh please. Democrats want war just as much (actually more compared to Ron Paul). And if you think the money you save on war can pay for the unfunded liabilities you got another thing coming.


You really need to learn the facts before you start posting your opinion.

AnAnonymous's picture

Make the rich pay for their own wars and get what you deserve

US citizen elite no longer need wars other than for satisfying the thirst of US citizen middle class for entitlements.

The US citizen elite have concentrated enough of the world wealth the rest is going to flow to them.

bshirley1968's picture

What are you, 28 years old?  Go find out who was President everytime we go into a war and I think you will find that over 90% of the time is was a DEMOCRAT.  It took a Republican to get us out.  I can't stand their asses either, but you need to get your facts straight.

spooz's picture

Its important to point out the places where the sheeple have made the wrong assumptions.  I just stick with the idea that both sides basically have the same agenda, just different corporate sponsors.

El Oregonian's picture

ZombieCare. Where the mindless mingle for their crumbs...

spooz's picture

Its so hard to break through the propaganda people are exposed to through the main stream media. They have been believing so long in dem v repub they can't see that both sides are complicit in the crony capitalistic status quo.  The health care act is nothing about making health care affordable.  Its about taking care of corporate health care, insurance and, don't forget, Big Pharma.  They all get seats at the table to divide up the spoils while the sheeple pay more and more for less and less.

BlueCollaredOne's picture

You're right. It is my belief that the false left/right paradigm really is at the center of a lot of our problems. If you were to take a poll of people who would consider themselves "politically aware", 95% of those people would be the ones who either believe that Romney/Obama is our savior. The way I see it is that the MSM paints every picture to be in either black or white, when we all know that truth is usually in a shade of gray. Fuck them.

These people lack historical context. How the fuck can they not see that the president is a puppet position? The president is placed there so the vox populi have a person to blame for their woes. The system wants the people to believe that voting truly matters.

America has been on a path of FASCISM (through crony capitalism), MILITARISM ( we've waged at least 7 "military interventions" since we were actually last attacked), and EUGENICISM (by fucking with our food, water, and healthcare.)

But what do I know, I'm just a dumb construction worker

jimijon's picture

I once took a poll of my readers for a little website I have dedicated to the TradeShow industy. I asked if they considered themselves, Democrat, Republican, Tea Party, Conservative, Liberal, Libertarian and Socialist.

Surprisingly about 85% said they were Conservative. They did not select Republican.

This is another of many signs that America is waking up and will be great again.

toady's picture

I get that all the time too.

I usually hear 'fiscally conservative, socially liberal', or the straight-out 'conservative' you mentioned.

I've heard it so much that I respond 'fiscally liberal, socially conservative ' just to get a reaction.

It backfires a lot though ... I end up talking about banning gay marriage a lot....

blunderdog's picture

Yeah, but what's "conservative" MEAN to these folks?

Most of the time I've heard that word, it's someone who means:

  -- big government enforcement of traditional social roles/mores


  -- reduced government spending/services

It's contradictory, but if you try to pin down exactly where the contradictions are, people get angry. 

Very little patience to deal with the ambivalence.  That's the real problem.  People are comforted by thinking things through to some given level, and going past that level, it becomes impossible to discuss anything rationally.

FleaMarketPete's picture

"Don't you touch the healthcare I paid for!!!111"

Yen Cross's picture

 Any comment I post would be skewed. /Ed;

tahoebumsmith's picture

Yeah I just got my notice from Anthem Bluecross a few days ago informing me that my healthcare policy for my family was going up 19% effective July 17th?  Thanks alot Keynesian, I'm not interested in paying for all the illegals you attract. Who would have ever thought we all would be responsible for paying or illegals healthcare? What part of ILLEGAL DON'T YOU FUCKING UNDERSTAND?

spooz's picture

You've soaked up a bit of propaganda there.  The reason health care is expensive is that corporate interests (corporate health care, insurance and Big Pharma) are sucking profits out of what should be a profitless service to the people.  Single payer with a complete overhaul of the existing provider system could make health care affordable, but the duopoly won't let it happen.  You gotta pay to play and the sheeple have no seat at the table.