Editor’s note: Michael Ackley’s columns may include satire and parody based on current events, and thus mix fact with fiction. He assumes informed readers will be able to tell the difference.

Seldom does the nuttiness in Washington, D.C., overshadow the nuttiness in California, but the Obamacare debacle has accomplished the feat.

Nevertheless, California, though out of the spotlight, has kept pace in the lamebrain race.

You may remember Janet Napolitano. She was secretary of Homeland Security before her promotion to the presidency of the University of California. Her accession to the academic job brought an avalanche of criticism of Homeland’s deportations during her tenure.

To assuage the concerns of the university’s soft-headed student body, Napolitano said she will expend $5 million to counsel and otherwise aid the university’s illegal alien students.

The Associated Press quoted her, “UC welcomes all students who qualify academically, whether they are documented or undocumented. Consider this a down payment – one more piece of evidence of our commitment to all Californians.”

One can imagine a Napolitano counselor chatting with an illegal scholar: “Don’t worry about Immigration and Customs Enforcement. If they dare to show up on campus, we’ll say they’re Israelis and sic the Palestinian Students Association on them.”

A university spokeswoman said the $5 million would come from “reserves” in accounts used to help faculty with their mortgages and to pay for “campus efficiency projects.” As UC faculty tend to be as soft-headed as their students, they probably won’t mind. As for efficiency: Why start now?

Napolitano announced she would present more “big ideas” in the near future, which makes that “down payment” crack all the more disquieting.

Di Fi to the rescue: Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu is one of the Democrats quivering like tomato aspic since the national media no longer can conceal the truth about Obamacare.

She’s getting a buck-up, though, from California’s senior Sen. Diane Feinstein. Di Fi, as she is known in the Golden State, is co-sponsoring Landrieu’s “Keeping the Affordable Care Act Promise Act,” subtitled, “The Bill to Save our Butts Bill.”

Said Feinstein, “This bill will extend the grandfather date for individual insurance plans so that individuals who have insurance policies they like can keep them indefinitely. …”

Therefore, if the bill passes and the president signs it (a matter not at all assured) insurance companies will have to uncancel policies they canceled to conform to the Affordable Care Act.

(One wonders how this squares with Article One, Section Nine, of the United States Constitution. You know, that line that says, “No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.” You could argue that the entire ACA is an ex post facto law, because it alters relationships that existed before its passage.)

If Landrieu’s measure becomes law, individuals still will be required to buy health insurance – and insurance companies that decide to stay in the market – will be required to sell insurance that meets ACA standards, except to individuals who already have health insurance. For individuals who already have health insurance, insurance companies will be required to sell policies that conform to the ACA or to retain/reinstate policies that don’t conform to the ACA, if the individuals who already have the latter policies decide they want to stay with them. Or, as President Obama said, “keep” them.

If you aren’t confused yet, we have failed.

Feinstein, who won’t face another election until 2018, declared – one assumes with a straight face – that “the Affordable Care Act is a good law, but it is not perfect” (our emphasis).

No kidding. The senator’s offices as of last week had received more than 30,000 constituent complaints about policy cancellations, ballooning premiums and mammoth deductibles.

His Highness: Last week the president announced another alteration of the Affordable Care Act, extending the policy grandfather clause for a year.

He then took four or five questions and provided filibuster-worthy answers to each.

Of those posing the questions, only CBS’ Major Garrett was semi-challenging, and nobody asked what yours truly thought the most obvious question of all:

“Under what authority do you usurp the law-writing function of Congress?” Nobody in the media seems willing to demand that Barack Obama explain himself. The Washington, D.C., press corps remains the most lazy, supine and pusillanimous assemblage of reporters in the entire nation.

But perhaps we’re being too harsh. It may be the ladies and gentlemen of the Capitol press corps are not  lazy, supine and pusillanimous. It could be they are what kindly educators used to call “slow.”


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