As Obamacare marches civil society down the Green Mile toward the nanny state death of soft tyranny, Republicans have been arguing whether to identify the uniformed officers next to us as security guards or policemen.
On the issue of whether to call the individual mandate a “tax” or a “penalty,” Republicans—like Democrats before last week’s Supreme Court ruling—are trying to have it both ways.
Republicans are seeking to have it both ways like Democrats during oral argument. Like John Roberts during the ruling. Like Democrats after the ruling.
Obamacare is the new social justice, but not in the way liberals intended. Instead, like social justice, no one can say for sure what it means, but that won’t stop them from using it as a rhetorical sledgehammer. Even Nancy “pass it to find out what’s in it” Pelosi was overwhelmed by the 2700-page Pandora’s Box of Orwellian doublethink.
RNC Chair Reince Priebus also jumps down the rabbit hole into Democrat Wonderland (though not for the first time): Continue reading
In Obamacare, the Supreme Court entered a world of paradox matched only by the nonsensical universe of quantum mechanics. Schrodinger’s cat is a famous thought experiment that according to quantum theory suggests that a cat in a box is simultaneously dead and alive until you open the box. Similarly, Obamacare’s individual mandate according to the federal government was simultaneously a tax and not a tax in court proceedings, until Chief Justice John Roberts issued his opinion and declared it a tax.
Yet conservative pundits are telling us to hang on to the silver lining.
Silver linings sound wonderful. Enlightened and positive people see them as small beacons of hope glimmering through harsh reality. The problem is that silver linings are accompanied by roiling masses of mile-high thunderstorms spanning several states that sweep through the mid-Atlantic in a dark red Doppler line, leaving a devastating warpath of death and destruction from which power companies still haven’t recovered. (bonus irony points for running straight through Washington, DC).
Even worse, the silver linings may not exist. Continue reading
Ezra Klein recently attempted to answer the supposedly perplexing question of “Why (do) Republicans Oppose the Individual Health Care Mandate?” A simple blog post could have done the trick; first noting that a majority of the country has opposed Obamacare since its passage, and then utilizing Occam’s Razor to conclude that the electoral incentive, as evidenced by the 2010 mid-term shellacking, served as the Republicans’ motivation. But no, Klein instead takes to The New Yorker to weave a devious tale of political partisanship, intellectual inconsistency, and faulty brain chemistry. He begins:
On March 23, 2010, the day that President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, fourteen state attorneys general filed suit against the law’s requirement that most Americans purchase health insurance, on the ground that it was unconstitutional. It was hard to find a law professor in the country who took them seriously. “The argument about constitutionality is, if not frivolous, close to it,” Sanford Levinson, a University of Texas law-school professor, told the McClatchy newspapers. Erwin Chemerinsky, the dean of the law school at the University of California at Irvine, told the Times, “There is no case law, post 1937, that would support an individual’s right not to buy health care if the government wants to mandate it.”
If Klein couldn’t find law professors who took the arguments seriously, then he didn’t look very hard. Klein suffers here from the same confirmation bias he’ll go on to criticize in the rest of the article. And why is “post 1937″, a seemingly arbitrary year, relevant? The Constitution was adopted 150 years priors, but 1937 was when FDR threatened and intimidated the Supreme Court with his court packing scheme. Just because the court started making ridiculous rulings regarding economic liberty at that point doesn’t mean we should be beholden to those flawed decisions forever. Next comes the back story of Republicans long-lost love for the individual mandate: Continue reading
President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and senior staff, react in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, as the House passes the health care reform bill. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Whether the bias in this Q&A by Walter Dellinger on the WaPo website is a reflection of the bias of the readers or the question screeners, we don’t know for sure, but based on past history, probably a combination of both. You can click through this “live” discussion page to read each question and see Dellinger’s response, but old Frick will pick a few of his favorites and run them through BiasBreakdown’s liberal-to-conservative universal translator to let you know what’s really going through their heads.
Universal access to health care
The concept that universal health care is somehow unconstitutional blows my mind. Those in opposition refuse the facts and will continue their rhetoric and propaganda. No wonder America has the most expensive health care system in the world! My question: How can such a system long survive?
Walter Dellinger :
I agree that we are in a bad way if we don’t have this law. It will be difficult to pass any other. And regardless of what one thinks of the social justice of extending coverage to 30 million Americans, the present system has made treatment more expensive, using emergency rooms as providers and passing the higher cost of that on to others.
The universal translator says…. Continue reading