In the spring of 2009, a Republican strategist settled on a brilliant and powerful attack line for President Barack Obama's ambitious plan to overhaul America's health insurance system. Frank Luntz, a consultant famous for his phraseology, urged GOP leaders to call it a "government takeover."
"Takeovers are like coups," Luntz wrote in a 28-page memo. "They both lead to dictators and a loss of freedom."
The line stuck. By the time the health care bill was headed toward passage in early 2010, Obama and congressional Democrats had sanded down their program, dropping the "public option" concept that was derided as too much government intrusion. The law passed in March, with new regulations, but no government-run plan....
By selecting "government takeover' as Lie of the Year, PolitiFact is not making a judgment on whether the health care law is good policy.
The phrase is simply not true.
Read the rest at PolitiFact.
Lie of the year? If there was a kid who failed kindergarten, and the school insisted that he be passed on to the next grade over the teachers protests that he never learned the basics, and therefore will be on the path to being illiterate as an adult, would that school say the teacher is telling the "lie of the year" because the child is not yet the grown-up idiot his teacher promises he'll be?
How do I know this isn't the lie of the year?
Well, I can start with Bawney up there...
"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."
...and I can end with the fact that mankind wasn't born yesterday.