“So Nash, my husband has convinced me that Obamacare’s not that bad. I mean, it’s just like Romneycare and you supported Mittens.” For the record, I would have supported a tin can in a race against Barry, and Romney had a slightly higher body temperature than a tin can. That being said, there are differences between the two laws. First, Romneycare only affected one state, not the entire country, and the last time I looked, we’re a country of Federalism, where states have rights that the federal govt. doesn’t have. Second, and more important from a practical standpoint is Romneycare doesn’t have (as many) business destroying taxes and that whole death panel thing (which is actually real by the way. It’s in the friggin’ bill. Read it).
In fact, Obamacare is such a destructive force in terms of costs that it may never be fully implemented. Don’t believe me? So far, approximately 2,000 waivers have been handed out by Health and Human Services. The waivers keep their recipients from having to comply with the dictates of Obamacare, which allows them to save money. See, mandating health insurance is really really expensive, and as a result, it increases costs on individuals and businesses in various ways. We conservatives have said for a long time that we don’t want to pay for it, and neither will anyone else. Liberals laughed at us and called us names, because, well, that’s what liberals do. As usual, the reality of money has come home to roost.
Minnesota’s two senators sought Monday to delay a tax on medical devices that was expected to add $28 billion over the next decade to help pay for health care reform.
Those two senators, one of whom is none other than Al “how the hell did I fall into this gig” Franken, are Dems who voted for Obamacare. One of the many tax increases contained within the law directly affects the cost of doing business for manufacturers of medical equipment. Apparently Minnesota has some of those. But it isn’t just two Dem Senators who want this part of the law repealed; there are 18 of them.
Repeal is the ultimate goal of the letter’s 18 signers, including Klobuchar, Franken and all the heavy hitters in the Senate Democratic leadership.
This is so typical. They create these social welfare programs that are so full of compassion, tolerance, and social justice-y goodness that they’re guaranteed to improve the lives of women, gays, blacks, illegals, transgenders, PETA members, college professors, college students, recent college graduates, government employees, spouses of government employees, Hispanics, the homeless, the poor, Sierra club members, people who smoke marijuana because it keeps them from getting blinder, and people who love public transportation but never use it because they might have to sit by any of the aforementioned groups of people. It’s unicorns and rainbows for everyone! And Obamaphones!
EXCEPT THAT WHOLE PART ABOUT PAYING FOR THE DAMN THING IS COMPLETELY AND UTTERLY IGNORED BECAUSE EVERY SINGLE PERSON WHO VOTES FOR A DEMOCRAT IS STUPID! AHHHHHHHHHHH!
I feel better now. Why is it that people who vote for the Democrat are unable to realize that stuff costs money? Is it that hard of a concept to grasp? Here we have Barry’s shining achievement: health care for all. Dammit, health care is a right! Well this completely non-right costs completely real money. And here we have 18 Democratic Senators asking Harry Reid to please please please delay the implementation of this thing because it’s going to make our economy worse which may result in us losing our jobs…after all of them voted for the damn thing.
Just kidding. I know the left understands that stuff costs money. They just want me to pay for it. And you know what? I don’t want to pay for it. This is precisely the reason why I want us to go over the fiscal cliff. I want the taxes of every single person who hates George W. Bush to go up because the George W. Bush tax cuts expire. You know when we’ll do away with liberalism? When liberals have to actually pay for the programs they vote for. When the Obamaphone lady has to actually pay for her Obamaphone, maybe then she’ll realize that her neighbor doesn’t exist to pay for her crap. Well, maybe not her neighbor, but you get my point.
Well, the Court agreed with me that you can’t regulate inactivity. That shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, but this is the Supreme Court after all. Yep, the Obamacare ruling came down by the Supremes today, and everyone is either super-excited, forlorn, or unsure. You can put me somewhere between forlorn and unsure. The ruling stinks because it maintains legislation that will join Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid as a giant blackhole of entitlement suck that we literally can’t pay for. It will also result in rising premiums and less care, while having no impact on rising healthcare costs. And “conservative” justice John Roberts joined the lefty minority to bring the law home. All of those things are bad.
But there are some potential goodies in there too (hence the lengthly dissent of the libs on what should have been considered a victory). First, the individual mandate failed under the Commerce Clause. Why is this important? Because it shows Congress can’t regulate whatever the hell it wants by simply arguing it involves “interstate commerce.” It also proves that I was right about it being an unprecedented overreach by Congress by trying to include inactivity in something that can be regulated. And I like being right. Yes, I know, it still passed constitutional muster under Congress’s taxing authority. That’s true. And the benefit to that is it gives the Republicans a HUGE talking point with an election coming up.
Uh, no George, it’s not a tax increase. I’m serious. George, don’t you know who I am? Seriously, it’s NOT A TAX.
Oh, wait, sorry. It is, ah, a tax. And it’s going to be frickin’ HUGE. And you know who it’s going to disproportionately impact? That’s right. The middle class. Why? Because high-rollers like me already have health insurance, and while it’s only going to get more expensive under this lovely bill, I can probably still afford it. But what about the middle class? They either need to pay the increasing premiums, or get
penalized taxed. So the Prez is a big liar and the voters he needs are going to be most impacted by his lie.
What’s another positive? Well, maybe it will keep me from having to hear about all the “politicians in robes” from the left, since the Chief Justice decided to play for the other team on what is probably the biggest decision the Roberts Court will ever make. You know what you never see? One of the four libs switching sides. Just kidding. We’ll all be hearing about Citizens United in about 10 minutes.
So what have we learned? We learned that the Commerce Clause doesn’t allow for the regulation of inactivity…which those of us who took English class in high school already knew. We learned that the Supreme Court will identify something as a tax, even if the law’s proponent specifically argues that it’s a penalty. We learned that the Chief Justice is more worried about how his court is perceived by the media than he is about actually making good decisions. And finally, we learned that the President is a huge liar, who rammed through the largest tax increase in history while telling everyone it wasn’t a tax increase.
Our little dictator lobs one over the bow of the Supreme Court. **UPDATE: Now with proof of my genius from the Fifth Circuit**
Lest you forget, oral arguments concerning Obamacare were had last week in the Supreme Court. At stake: the individual mandate, and potentially the whole friggin’ law. Despite the assertions of the legal geniuses residing in their ivory tower law schools, the Supremes didn’t seem convinced that forcing every American to purchase a product constituted “regulation of economic activity.” In fact, at least five, and possibly six, of the Justices seemed skeptical about whether inactivity was the type of activity that could be regulated. After the hearings were completed, everyone proceeded to overreact.
The most over-the-top, and predictable, overreaction came from the president yesterday. In a speech delivered with the heads of Mexico and Canada(?), Barry proceeded to threaten the Supreme Court, just in case they were stupid enough to go against the family.
‘Ultimately, I am confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,’ Obama said.
I’m not sure overturning a law passed by Congress is unprecedented. The last time I looked, the Constitution considers the Supreme Court to be equal to Congress. Moreover, the job of the Court has, for a few centuries, been to review legislation passed by Congress for its constitutionality. In fact, the Supreme Court has overturned laws passed by Congress before. Thus, doing so here would not be “unprecedented.” Also, being that the Democrats had to bribe some of their own members in the Senate to get the thing passed in the first place, I’d hardly call Obamacare legislation “passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress” (not that the number of “yes” votes matters to a law’s constitutionality).
Obama noted that for years, conservatives had been arguing that the ‘unelected’ Supreme Court should not adopt an activist approach by making rather than interpreting law, and held up the health legislation as an example.
I agree. Activist judges suck. But overturning Obamacare because the mandate is an unprecedented overreach of the federal government wouldn’t constitute “activism.” In other words, deciding that forcing an American citizen to buy something doesn’t constitute “regulating interstate commerce” isn’t exactly crazy. In fact, as I eluded to earlier, the only way the mandate could be upheld is if the Court decides “regulate” and “activity” actually mean the exact opposite. Don’t get me wrong…it wouldn’t shock me if the Court performed such a manipulation of the English language, but its choosing not to do so certainly wouldn’t constitute radical activism.
‘I think it’s important…to remind people that this is not an abstract argument,’ Obama said.
‘The law that’s already in place has already given 2.5 million young people health care that wouldn’t otherwise have it.
‘There are tens of thousands of adults with preexisting conditions who have health care right now because of this law.’
In a courtroom, the foregoing is what’s called “irrelevant.” I’m sure my life would be much more enjoyable if Congress passed a law requiring me to buy a helicopter, and then provided me the money if I couldn’t afford it; but the satisfaction of laughing at the losers stuck in traffic while I sip champagne in my underwear doesn’t make it constitutional.
It should be noted that Barry’s rant against the Supreme Court is just another example of his dictatorial dreams. Who can forget the fits he still throws when Congress doesn’t give him what he wants? And just as he has done in response to Congress’s alleged “failure to act,” (giving unelected agencies like the EPA and FDA truly unprecedented power, for example), I’m predicting Barry tries to do something extreme if the Court overturns Obamacare. Packing the Courts, a la FDR? Something else? We’ll have to wait and see.
The Fifth Circuit today, while hearing a separate challenge to Obamacare, revealed that it reads this very blog as part of its preparation for important oral arguments.
Overturning a law of course would not be unprecedented — since the Supreme Court since 1803 has asserted the power to strike down laws it interprets as unconstitutional. The three-judge appellate court appears to be asking the administration to admit that basic premise — despite the president’s remarks that implied the contrary. The panel ordered the Justice Department to submit a three-page, single-spaced letter by noon Thursday addressing whether the Executive Branch believes courts have such power, the lawyer said.
Obviously a Fifth Circuit judge isn’t going to go on the record saying he or she relies upon a blog to provide pertinent legal background, but it’s obvious, right? Didn’t I already point out that the Supreme Court has stricken unconstitutional legislation before? Who else can provide this kind of legal research? The president himself isn’t even aware, and he used to be a law professor!
Obvious questions remain: Will the Justice Department respond? Will Eric Holder find the time between running guns to Mexico and racially profiling nuns (I made up the latter)? Will Barry write the letter himself, in purple crayon (the most diverse color)? WILL THIS BLOG FINALLY GET THE CREDIT IT DESERVES?
Well, a federal judge from the District of Columbia has ruled that Obamacare is Constitutional. The score card now sits at 3-2 in favor of its Constitutionality. Of course, the score doesn’t matter because the Supreme Court will be making the ultimate decision, hopefully sooner rather than later. I’m posting about the D.C. decision because I find it truly terrifying that a federal judge would issue a ruling that says this:
It is pure semantics to argue that an individual who makes a choice to forgo health insurance is not ‘acting,’ especially given the serious economic and health-related consequences to every individual of that choice. Making a choice is an affirmative action, whether one decides to do something or not do something. They are two sides of the same coin. To pretend otherwise is to ignore reality.
Read that again, and absorb just what is being asserted here. Let’s remember that the Constitutional issue with Obamacare is whether Congress can compel a private citizen to purchase a product on the private market. Our government argues it possesses this power under the Commerce Clause in the Constitution. The Commerce Clause says this:
The Congress shall have power…. To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes.
The Commerce Clause constitutes one of the very few enumerated powers given to Congress, and its scope seems pretty clear. Of course, thanks to the Supreme Court, this short clause has been twisted into a pretzel, and now serves to support Congress’ regulation of just about everything. Congress has never before tried to force the American people to buy something, however, so Obamacare is truly unprecedented.
O.k., now that we’ve had our review, let’s evaluate the scope of the D.C. ruling.
It is pure semantics to argue that an individual who makes a choice to forgo health insurance is not ‘acting…’
Here, the D.C. court is simply agreeing with the government’s argument that, by doing nothing, one is actually doing something. Take this assertion to its logical conclusion, and Congress can force us to buy whatever it wants. Hopefully it chooses a tank. Because owning a tank would be awesome.
In my opinion, the D.C. court goes beyond that though.
Making a choice is an affirmative action, whether one decides to do something or not do something.
By using this assertion as a basis for its ruling, the court argues that Congress can literally regulate one’s thoughts under the Commerce Clause. I’m crazy, you say? Well, think about it. Where does a decision to not do something reside? It isn’t manifested in physical action, as a decision to do something would be. Instead, it resides only in your brain. The D.C. court believes the decision living in your head can be regulated, it’s that simple.
Am I going too far with this? Maybe. But everyone needs to realize that, if the individual mandate in Obamacare is found to be Constitutional, then there is literally nothing Congress cannot regulate. And if the D.C. court has its way, that would include your own thoughts.
It seems everyone with any shwag is getting a waiver for Obamacare now-days. What is a waiver from Obamacare you ask? Well, in its effort to create awesome health care benefits out of pixie dust and rainbows, the new health care law compels privately-owned insurance providers to give at least $2 million in annual benefits to insureds by 2013. Well that sounds like a great idea! Unlimited insurance benefits for all!
It turns out that there’s a small problem with requiring companies to provide a certain level of coverage to all insureds though. It’s called reality. A company like McDonald’s, for example, provides some health benefits for its low-wage workers because the premiums aren’t terribly high…so it’s affordable. Do you think $2 million a year is going to be affordable? Probably not. Hence the waivers.
The waivers allow health insurance plans to limit how much they will spend on a policy holder’s medical coverage for a given year. Under the new health care law, however, such annual limits are phased out by the year 2014. (Under HHS regulations, annual limits can be no less than $750,000 for 2011, no less than $1.25 million in 2012 and no less than $2 million in 2013.)
So far, 222 organizations have been granted waivers from having to comply with Obamacare. The most recent: three local chapters of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). No, this isn’t about unions per se. Fact it, lots of large companies and charitable organizations have been issued waivers. The purpose of this post is to simply inquire into whether Obamacare can be defined as a good thing if no one can afford to comply with it (I know, this question often vexes liberals)?
Let’s face it…the new health care law is an entitlement program whose purpose is to provide good healthcare, at a cheap cost, to those deemed most at risk. Unfortunately, good healthcare at a cheap cost doesn’t exist in the real world. So, what needs to happen? Well, first, the big political donors need to be satiated. Hence specifically exempting them from the law. Second, those low-wage employees of the big political donors will need to be subsidized in some way by the government. Why? Because if Obamacare results in janitors not receiving the same annual insurance limits of everyone else, even the libs will admit failure.
You see, there is no such thing as a free lunch. A company can’t survive by offering cadillac plans to everyone, and not charging appropriate premiums to everyone. An insurance provider can’t afford to offer insurance to someone with heart disease who smokes five packs a day, while only requiring the premium of a healthier person. But the government doesn’t exist in the real world, and that’s why the end result of Obamacare will be a lack of private insurance providers offering benefits to everyone else.
But that’s the point, isn’t it?
That thud you hear is yet another obamacare fantasy falling to earth. This time it comes with fancy charts, courtesy of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, via the Wall Street Journal:
What’s fun about about this thud is that it directly refutes the primary justification for Obamacare: to cut the rising costs of medical care. Not only does it not cut costs, it’s projected to increase them! And it isn’t just those with private insurance that it affects either. As you can see, everyone’s costs will go up. The only exception is medicare, and that’s only because the feds are going to under-reimburse doctors for their services (which sounds like a great way to secure quality care). And keep in mind, this isn’t a Wall Street Journal study; it’s a federal government study.
The dems are right about one thing: Obamacare will certainly go down in history.