MIT professor Gruber vs. “stupid American voters”

See UPDATE Below

Jonathan Gruber, MIT economist and sometime architect of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) has a fancy mathematical model named after himself–the Gruber Microsimulation Model (GMSIM)*. This model forms the basis of Obamacare.

Gruber is The Ford Professor of Economics at MIT. He teaches a class in Public Finance and Public Policy to the impressionable young minds whose parents shell out thousands for a prestigious MIT education.

But he is also the Director of the National Bureau of Economic Research’s Program on Health Care from 2009-present. He was paid almost $400,000 in taxpayer money to provide technical assistance to the creators of Obamacare.

In this now-famous video, Gruber is very pleased with how he and the other architects of Obamacare pulled a fast one on the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). And how they carefully disguised the true effects of the law from “stupid American voters”:

Until recently, Democrat Senator Max Baucus was very pleased with Gruber and his GMSIM model, calling it “unbiased, like the Congressional Budget Office.” On the floor of the Senate, CSPAN recorded Baucus as saying that Gruber was the source of the figure batted around by Obama claiming Obamacare would save a family of four $2,500 a year (and we all know what a lie THAT was):

Baucus (from the CSPAN transcript):

In addition to CBO, MIT’s Jon Gruber has also done a study on premiums. And what does he conclude? He concludes, using Congressional Budget Office data, the Senate bill could mean people purchasing individual insurance would save every year $200 for single coverage and $500 for family coverage in 2009 dollars. Most people think he is one of the best outside experts. He has big computer models. He takes the CBO data and, in some respects, he has helped CBO by giving some information to CBO that
it otherwise does not have.

Mr. Gruber also points out that people with low incomes would receive premium tax credits that will reduce the price they pay for health insurance by as much as $2,500 to $7,500.

To help us “stupid Americans,” understand why Obamacare is such a wonderful invention, Gruber even wrote a comic book (or maybe you could call it a “graphic novel”).

Jonathan Gruber wrote a comic book explaining Obamacare

On FOX News, Megyn Kelly featured Gruber in a second video saying that “the American people are too stupid to understand.”

UPDATE: In yet a third video, Gruber talks about how they exploited the basic lack of understanding of the American voter, playing fast and loose with the truth by telling voters the new tax would fall on the INSURANCE companies for so-called “Cadillac Plans,” even though the Insurance companies would just pass the tax on to consumers.

He really thinks Americans are stupid, doesn’t he? So what are we going to do about it?

*About Gruber’s Model

According to a 2012 story in the New York Times, Gruber invented the concept of the Individual Mandate in Obamacare. Gruber has “nearly cornered the market on the technical science” of modeling health care laws. Furthermore, Gruber is “the only person you can go to for that kind of thing, which is why the White House reached out to him in the first place.”

 

Contrarian scientist Lennart Bengtsson slammed by climate cabal

This week, a renowned climate scientist and research fellow at the University of Reading in the UK was treated to the same sort of emotional blackmail doled out to Galileo in the 17th century by the Roman Catholic Church for publishing theories that disputed the sanctioned scientific views of that day.

Lennart Bengtsson has a long and distinguished career in the mainstream of climate science. The 79-year-old meteorologist has published some 225 peer-reviewed articles and was Head of Research for the ECMWF (European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasting) from 1975-1981 and Director from 1982-1990. He also was Director of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg from 1990-2001 and from 2008 was Director of the International Space Science Institute in Bern, Switzerland.

However, Bengtsson has long questioned why climate models are not able to accurately predict the climate. In an interview with Hans von Storch, Bengtsson said that he is concerned that the global temperature rise of only about 1-1/3 degrees Farenheit since the end of the 19th century doesn’t match the large increase in greenhouse gases added to the atmosphere by burning of fossil fuels.

Climate models don’t match the real world

It is an established fact that the Earth’s average temperature has not risen at all in the last 17 years.

Bengtsson is concerned that the United Nations’ IPCC group, which regularly puts out reports on the sad state of the world’s climate, is not paying enough attention to this fact, nor to the lack of ocean surface warming and the increases in Antarctic sea ice in the last several years.

Furthermore, he told von Storch, he began to be dismayed by the way the science behind the IPCC report was being used to advance a purely political agenda.

In fact, President Obama’s newly released National Climate Assessment report relies heavily on the IPCC report. The NCA will be the basis of the EPA’s upcoming regulation of carbon dioxide emissions from existing coal-fired power plants, which is expected to cause the price of energy to skyrocket, and in the process, cut quite a few jobs.

Climate science ‘not ready for prime time’

This “dramatic makeover of the power industry” based on a science that is not yet well understood is exactly what has Bengtsson worried. “Climate science must be focused to understand such matters much better and for this reason it is appropriate to have an open mind and not follow the IPCC as believers of a religious faith,” he told von Storch.

His doubt and questions eventually led him to join a think tank called the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), which the mainstream climate science community regards with disdain, though its members come from every flavor of the political spectrum.

Though he doesn’t agree with all the scientists at GWPF, Bengtsson said he believes there should be a variety of opinions aired about such a complex system as the Earth’s climate. And furthermore, he is interested in the group’s desire to use science to help society adapt to changes in climate that occur in the future, such as, for example, using nuclear energy to replace fossil fuels.

Brutal backlash

Unfortunately, the collaboration was short lived. Within a week after his announcement, Bengtsson wrote an email to the GWPF to resign his new position, due to the vicious backlash he received from the mainstream climate science community. In it, he wrote:

“I have been put under such an enormous group pressure in recent days from all over the world that has become virtually unbearable to me. If this is going to continue I will be unable to conduct my normal work and will even start to worry about my health and safety….

It is a situation that reminds me about the time of McCarthy.”

–Lennart Bengtsson

One of the most striking claims Bengtsson made is that “the pressure had mainly come from climate scientists in the US,” and specifically a scientist who works for the U.S. Government, who insisted on removing his name from a paper co-authored with Bengtsson.

This “My Way or the Highway” approach reminds me of what President Obama, incidentally the head of the U.S. Government, expressed this past week, when he said, “We’ve still got some climate deniers who shout loud, but they’re wasting everybody’s time on a settled debate.”

 

Politicizing Climate Science – 3.0

UPDATE: See independent scientists’ critique of the National Climate Assessment.

With much fanfare, President Obama today released the final version of the Third National Climate Assessment (NCA). In order to impress upon the public that drastic changes in the weather, such as rain and heat and lightning and snowstorms, are caused by human activities, the Administration put on a dog-and-pony show, complete with TV Weather Presenter/Actor Al Roker.

The final NCA report contains hundreds of pages of dire warnings about how we despicable humans are causing climate disruptions of all sorts, due to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from power plants, factories and cars.

In advance of the parade of eight TV weatherpersons, White House counselor John Podesta announced, like John the Baptist in the wilderness preparing the Way of the Lord, that Republicans in Congress would not be able to stop the inevitable: Obama’s climate agenda.

word cloud - politicsPodesta’s pronouncement revealed that the real purpose of the latest report is to provide political cover for new Executive Orders, which will result in more environmental regulations designed to kill the coal industry and hamstring the rest of the country with “necessarily skyrocketing” electricity prices.

The Climate Science Supplement

Wanting to skip the report’s political palaver, Ms. Contrarian Scientist hunted for the science behind it, which, she hoped, could be found in one of the Appendices, labeled the “Climate Science Supplement.”

The Supplement was written by a long list of scientists, including Katherine Hayhoe, Evangelical Christian and former science adviser to Newt Gingrich.

Remember how, during the 2012 primaries, Newt recanted his former support for global warming and in the process, distanced himself from Ms. Hayhoe? Well, it’s payback time, and this is intended as a direct smear on Republicans. As for Ms. Hayhoe, she has become something of a celebrity in the global warming crowd these days.

After the Supplement’s list of authors, we find 12 “Supplemental Messages” that the scientists divined during their years-long assessment of the “best available science.”

These “messages” remind Ms. Contrarian Scientist of the “talking points” that Ben Rhodes wanted Susan Rice to emphasize on the Sunday Talk shows after the massacre of our Ambassador and three other Americans in Benghazi.

The very first Supplemental Message asserts that, although climate changes in the past have been caused by natural factors, human activities are now the dominant agents of change. Oh, really? Humans have more effect on the climate of Earth than the Sun? Or than the oceans, which cover 70 percent of the planet?

It was all too much. Ms. Contrarian Scientist had to take a break from the politics and leave the real science for another day.