“A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth. Authoritarian institutions and marketers have always known this fact.”
― Daniel Kahneman (GoodReads), Thinking, Fast and Slow
Whether in business or in politics, it seems that the more assertive and confident individuals in an organization will likely have an advantage, and as Dr. Daniel Kahneman, a Nobel-winning psychologist explained in an interview with the DailyBeast:
"People like leaders who look like they are dominant, optimistic, friendly to their friends, and quick on the trigger when it comes to enemies. They like boldness and despise the appearance of timidity and protracted doubt."
Research mentioned in BusinessNewsDaily, finds that companies must walk a fine line when searching for leaders that are confident versus overconfident, and they quote one of the study's authors, Professor Stephen Ferris of the University of Missouri:
"No one wants to follow a timid leader; confidence is very contagious and can enhance investor interest and help with innovation."
Of course, the nation's government is not a company, but the American public must elect leaders that they trust to do a good job in the position to which each is elected. So, with the idea and then the debate over the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare, the public is revisiting the entire affair.
People are alert to the promises made and the frequent repetitions about healthcare coverage:
From TheLead, Jake Tapper's CNN show: "If you like your doctor you will be able to keep your doctor. Period," Obama said in a speech in Chicago in 2009. "If you like your healthcare plan, you will be able to keep your healthcare plan. Period."
From HuffingtonPost: "Nevertheless, when you hear the words, "If you like your plan, you can keep it," do you immediately think to yourself, "Of course by that they mean I'll keep my plan provided that, say, my copayment never changes?" No, you don't. You are a normal human being, accustomed to straightforward-sounding things meaning what they seem to imply."
Linda Douglass, communications director for the White House Office of Health Reform, has stated at WhiteHouse.gov: "... one of my jobs is to keep track of all the disinformation that's out there about health insurance reform." Douglass then provides a clip of the promise made by President Barack Obama on the health care matter:
"THE PRESIDENT: Here is a guarantee that I've made. If you have insurance that you like, then you will be able to keep that insurance. If you've got a doctor that you like, you will be able to keep your doctor. Nobody is trying to change what works in the system. We are trying to change what doesn't work in the system."
Former Obama Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is now quoted in the WeeklyStandard as being questioned over his take on the whole promise thing. Gibbs was asked:
"Robert. you're a communications guy and you were there. How could the president say, and there's a clip we'll show where he says it many, many, many, many -- I remember it -- 'You can keep your plan.'
Gibbs replied: "Well, look, I don't recall significant discussions around some of the verbage on this, to be a hundred percent honest with you,"
Question: "But do you agree it was a wrong move?"
Answer: "Oh, well, certainly."
Sticker shock, limited choice, worries
And today, theLead story by CNN correspondent Jake Tapper is that Obama Administration officials have expressed another concern about the Affordable Care Act: and that would be "disappointment from consumers" once they face "sticker shock and limited choice."
Governor Peter Shumlin of Vermont has invoked a health exchange "safety valve" for residents in his state who have suffered a month of malfunctions online trying to find options for coverage, according to the BurlingtonFreePress.
Shumlin's statement, according to the story:
"I won't tolerate a situation where Vermonters go into the holiday season worried and confused by their health care options come Jan. 1. That is simply unacceptable."
The implementation of the safety valve, using Section 41a of the 2012 health care law, according to the information online, allows theVermont Dept. of Financial Regulation to free the populace to buy their own insurance plans as well as give small employers the go ahead to extend their insurance coverage plans until March 31.