President’s Obamacare Chief Fending Off Criticism From All Corners

-By Warner Todd Huston

President Obama chose former Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius to head the Department of Health and Human Services, the agency most involved in implementing the Affordable Care Act. But Sebelius is under heavy criticism for her efforts thus far to break out the “train wreck” that is Obamacare.

The Orwellian named Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is causing heartburn all across the political spectrum and for many HHS Secretary Sebelius’ missteps are making matters worse.

things have been sour from the beginning. One of the law’s principal authors, Democrat Senator Max Baucus of Montana, has called Obamacare a “huge train wreck.”

“I’m very concerned that not enough is being done so far–very concerned. Small businesses have no idea what to do, what to expect,” Baucus warned on April 17.

Baucus isn’t the only one worried. Polling still shows that more oppose the law than favor it.

This uncertainty has had real-world effects. From companies fearing expansion of their businesses and adding jobs because they don’t know how Obamacare will affect them, to continued slow economic growth as a result, to the growth of new companies feeding off government by seeking information on the law and then selling that knowledge to anyone concerned, Obamacare is causing major upheaval across the country.

Sadly, Secretary Sebelius is not managing all this very well–though it seems a practically impossible job, anyway.

A major misstep occurred earlier in May when it was reported that the Secretary was “suggesting” that private businesses “donate” large sums of money to her in order to help her implement Obamacare, an effort one wag called the “Sebelius Shakedown.”

Sebelius has also been very slow moving in response to queries and problems with the law. According to The Hill one liberal lawmaker said “She’s been terribly defensive, terribly slow to react.”

“There have been many conversations among progressives about this. We want a personality that acts to confront any glitches immediately–more of a nose-to-the-grindstone manager.”

This liberal lawmaker also noted that this mess could be a major problem for Democrats in the upcoming mid-term elections.

Obamacare is growing government certainly, but it is also creating a whole new class of people feeding off government.

As the old saying goes, nature abhors a vacuum, and the emptiness in question with Obamacare is a dearth of information on just how this massively intrusive law will affect business and, well, everyone else. The vacuum is being filled by a somewhat new lobbyist-cum information peddling entity called the “political intelligence” company.

These non-governmental agencies are flooding Capital Hill with operatives trying to find out everything they can about a a law about which few people have even the slightest handle. They then return the info back to their people who crunch the numbers and parse the language of the law and its various proposed fixes and sell what they discover to industry representatives who are truly in the dark about what this law will do to them.

Everyone is scrambling to figure Obamacare out. From the businesses that will have to abide by it, to the healthcare providers that will be regulated by it, to the very lawmakers that claimed to have written it, no one in the nation has the first idea what Obamacare will do.

As government came in to muddy the waters with an increasingly unpopular healthcare law, now a whole new phalanx of operatives are coming forth to make a living off government and its follies.

Apparently Obamacare has been good for someone.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,, and, as well as,,,,, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001