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  • Despotism, Thy Name Is Obamacare

    Two years ago, everything about Obamacare was in the future. Recall the revealing comment at the time by then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D–CA) that Congress had to pass the legislation to see what was in it. Now that the disputed law is in its implementation stage, Americans are beginning to see what is in it and what it means for them. Welcome to the future.

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, is the centerpiece of the current progressive agenda. At its core is the requirement for individuals—under penalty of law—to buy health insurance. As we have argued before, this requirement is unprecedented and unconstitutional. The concern is that if government can regulate inactivity, it can do anything and everything.

    We now see how this new regime will operate. Massive regulatory authority over one-sixth of the American economy is transferred to a collection of more than 150 federal agencies, bureaus, and commissions, along with an unprecedented delegation of power to the Secretary of Health and Human Services. As a result, key policy decisions are given over to bureaucrats whose “rules” in the guise of “regulations,” mostly unaccountable and invisible to the public, have the full force and effect of laws passed by Congress.

    This new bureaucratic reign, its arbitrary discretion, and the resulting potential for cronyism can be seen in Obamacare’s earliest actions. Even before the law is fully implemented, administrators have granted almost 2,000 waivers (mostly for union and business friends) to its own health care regulations. One whole program (the CLASS Act, Obamacare’s long-term care insurance plan) has been unilaterally cancelled as completely unworkable—but kept on the books for possible future implementation.

    We now have the first real taste of what is to come. Not only do we have to buy health insurance, but now they’re telling us what that health insurance will look like.

    It turns out that under Obamacare—earlier denials to the contrary notwithstanding—all insurance plans must cover, at no charge, abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, sterilization, and patient education and counseling for women of reproductive age. Religious employers such as Catholic hospitals, Christian schools, and faith-based pregnancy care centers will have to provide and pay for such coverage for their employees regardless of their religious beliefs. Although religious institutions vehemently objected that the proposed rule would force them to provide services that as a matter of faith they find morally objectionable, Health and Human Services issued the final rule in its entirety and without the slightest change.

    This is not a one-time exception to the rule of Obamacare; it is the establishment of the rule itself. One can only imagine what life will be like when the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) begins rationing health benefits to reduce Medicare spending. It is not the details in Obamacare that are the real problem but the form of governance it establishes, by which unelected experts are empowered to make the rules as they go along.

    What is happening has little to do with health care or even public policy and everything to do with the role of government in the most immediate and intimate matters of our lives. All is subject to government control, regulatory dictate, and administrative whim. Nothing will be allowed outside of the new regulatory scheme: no independent state programs, no individuals or businesses permitted not to participate, no true private market alternatives.

    There should be no surprise here. This is the heart of the progressive project. It is what happens when a model of government focused on determining outcomes, despite good intentions, finally acquires the unlimited authority to reshape society to its bureaucratic blueprint.

    Posted in Featured, First Principles, Obamacare [slideshow_deploy]

    36 Responses to Despotism, Thy Name Is Obamacare

    1. hughbaby says:

      I am reminded of an old episode of the Twilight Zone. Can't remember all the details but the story line was that a man was adjudged by the government to be unnecessary because he was a librarian. Since there were no longer any books he was to be executed. He was given a choice of how to die and in the end tricked the government leader.
      My point in bringing all to our attention is that this is where we are headed. When an unelected and unaccountable committee can make life or death health care decisions for us then we are fully enslaved to the government. Next will be elimination of non-productive citizens in the name of balancing the budget.

      • Jeanne Stotler says:

        I saw a similair movie, you were assigned colors according to your status, then therewere death squads, they would go out and give shots to kill people who were no longer useable, children were taken from families and educated in state schools, neighbors spied and turned in other neighbors. It was far out fiction then, but is beging to happen under this administration.

        • Margus12 says:

          What are you talking about? As an outsider reading this, it appears that you're just opposed to the Healthcare Bill for no particular reason.

          • guest says:

            Margus 12,
            If the Healthcare Bill is so good then why have 2000 waivers been granted?

          • Mike says:

            There is nothing to like about it. Unconstitutional Mandates, violation of religious freedoms, forcing all private providers to provide the same exact insurance as if everyone needs the same coverage or wants it. It expands Medicaid but robs seniors of Medicare Advantage.
            Remember Obama promising 85% can keep their insurance. Besides that being a lie did you ever ask who the 15% were that gets screwed by his plan? The elderly!
            Why are members of Congress and the White House exempt? Why are unions exempt? Certain corporations are exempt but not all. But if it is fair for all shouldn't all pay equally and be served by it equally? will Pelosi's husband go ahead of us in the line because he is her husband or will he wait for weeks for an appointment like in the British system, or months for a specialist?

    2. skydash says:

      Sad,but true and a surprise to no one who has taken the slightest amount of time to educate themselves on this onerous document.

    3. subconch says:

      Terribly true. The Czars and bureaucrats outnumber our elected representatives. And if this much is known in an election year, imagine what is to come.

    4. subconch says:

      Terribly true. The Czars and bureaucrats outnumber our elected representatives. And if this much is known in an election year, imagine what is to come.
      (this is not spam, double posted, deleted one, both gone, re-posted twice, sorry for ignorance)

    5. Mike, Wichita Falls says:

      I'm glad all of these Obamacare issues are bubbling up BEFORE oral arguments are made at the Supreme Court next month. It's difficult to believe that they would not strike down part if not all of it as unconstitutional. At least the Landmark Legal Foundation amicus brief makes many convincing arguments to that effect. What if they only repeal part? There still needs to be a push to repeal Obamacare. It ought to be a plank in the GOP platform. Although all four GOP Presidential candidates have said they will repeal Obamacare, which one do you really believe will do so?

      So far, only Santorum convinces me.

      • Margus12 says:

        Are you and the others on here truly comfortable with the fact that 40 million of your fellow citizens don't have healthcare, or is it that you just don't care?

        • SVG says:

          First you explain why they don't have health care and yet get just as good of care as anyone of us who do? Why did my father get to sign his life savings away after a hospitol stay while the guy who had no health care said to the discharge clerk "I can't pay for any of this" and was told don't worry it is taken care of?!

        • ORConservative says:

          It's called personal responsibility…oh, I forgot, America, under the obama regime is headed toward the land of "no one takes personal responsibility anymore" AND "we need the taxpayers to take care of me because I need something and don't feel like working". Scary.

      • Charcoal says:

        That their choice. I bet they have a cell phone.

    6. Bob says:

      The requirement to make birth control and other reproductive services available would not be an issue if the overly oppressive ideals of the religious right were actually observed by its 'constituents.' Obamacare is not requiring that birth control is used, just that it is available. If a religious orgs members need to use these morally objectionable services, then that probably means there is something wrong with the church.

      • Margus12 says:

        At last! Someone talking sense.

      • Todd says:

        Birth control is available – and in many different forms. And it is not that expensive. I am still wondering why birth control is so important to the socialist in this country. I believe that it comes down to a control issue. And socialist like to control every aspect of a person's life. By the way, I will not call the liberal left and the Democratic party by those names anymore. They are socialists and need to be labelled as such. I am waiting for them to finally stand up and be proud of what they are. Why do they hide it?

      • GAP300 says:

        Bob, you're missing the point entirely. The issue is not the contraceptive but rather that the government is REQUIRING that it be covered. If it can require this coverage then it can require some type of coverage that you might object to somewhere down the line. By the way, if it's a covered expense then all policyholiders are paying for it not just the ones utilizing the service. Do you get it now?

      • Helen Spingola says:

        When a Church member goes against the Church's beliefs and teachings, there's something wrong
        with the individual, not "SOMETHING WRONG WITH THE CHURCH" – don't blame the Church for
        the individual's weakness.

      • bubbawithab says:

        Oh Bob… Your post is so fraught with fallacies, yet I will only mention one for you to go research: post hoc ergo propter hoc. Now, go find the "thought" it applies to (hint – it's the last one). If there is an epiphany, then you have been successful and it is your moral obligation to explain the reasoning to Margus12.

    7. Nolakonk says:

      Joe Wilson was right after all.

    8. Sam says:

      We know that our arguments are dictated by our needs, and our needs cannot be dictated to by arguments.

    9. dancingmom says:

      Not much attention has been given to the patient education and counseling relating to sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs, and contraceptives. Does it include propaganda about the fake population crisis? Do they inform women of the connection between abortion and birth control and subsequent higher rates of breast cancer, as well as blood clots and other health hazards? Does the patient education include Natural Family Planning or the comparison of success rates of various birth control methods with NFP? How about the inability of any of these so-called services to prevent sexually transmitted diseases?

      I am very suspicious of the patient education and counseling. Does it take place at rural retreats in northern Russia — and you can come home after you pass their test?

    10. Don W says:

      Major problems with PPACA or Obamacare that are not addressed in the media are the MLR and Guarantee Issue provisions.

    11. Don W says:

      The MLR (medical loss ratio) says that insurance carriers must pay out 80% of premiums in claims (85% for larger groups). What other industry has a limit on how much money they can make? Is that not completely against what America stands for? You can only make X amount, otherwise give it back.

    12. Don W says:

      The guarantee issue provision for individuals will turn the individual health care world upside down. It effectively says, anybody can get an individual health policy. Right now, if you have medical issues you can get it as part of a group plan through work, or go through a State funded High Risk Pool. Because not anybody can get health insurance, individual policies can be very reasonablly priced – with the implementation of the guarantee issue rider, health premiums in the individual world will triple. At that point, the government will come in and say, well insurance companies, we gave you a shot and you screwed up. We are going to take this over.
      When this happens, socialist healthcare will become reality. 1/8 of the US economy is based in health care. The gov has its hands in enough right now, and have managed to screw up most things they touch. 13% of our economy, millions of jobs, and hundreds of billions of dollars are in the balance.

      Long story short – these are the real issues with PPACA/Obamacare

    13. Lloyd Scallan says:

      Yet no one is doing anything to stop this or Obama's other policies to drive this nation into socialism. I employ the people who read this blog, please realize the established Republicans and their candidate (Mitt) will not repeal ObamaCare. They will continue to deceive the American voter.

    14. CraigJCasey says:

      Obamacare places no limits on government power or medicaid spending. If the PPACA Dragon is not slain now, it will get much much bigger and destroy the States & Federal budgets. http://www.cobrahealth.com/Unaffordable.html

    15. RennyG says:

      This "fungus" has spread into our govermental system and I don't think we can do anything about it!
      But, I know who can correct it if we help, it's "OUR LORD AND SAVIOR!!" How about we all pray to Him for help!!!!???

    16. bubbawithab says:

      None dare call it tyranny, except Matthew Spalding of course. As usual, he is spot on. If you haven't, get his book "We Still Hold These Truths." Must read, in the same realm "The Theme is Freedom" (Evans), "Kingdoms in Conflict" (Colson), "Vindicating the Founders" (West) and "Liberal Fascism" (Goldberg). And no, I don't know the guy so I'm not shilling. :)

    17. bubbawithab says:

      None dare call it tyranny, except Matthew Spalding of course. As usual, he is spot on. If you haven't, get his book "We Still Hold These Truths." Must read, in the same realm "The Theme is Freedom" (Evans), "Kingdoms in Conflict" (Colson), "Vindicating the Founders" (West) and "Liberal Fascism" (Goldberg). And no, I don't know the guy so I'm not shilling. :)

    18. Tim Essenburg says:

      "The concern is that if government can regulate inactivity, it can do anything and everything." That is an interesting statement. In all states that I know of, there is a requirement that a child/youth attend school until a certain age. If they choose "inactivity"–do not attend school–they are truant. Is this another form of "despotism"? Similarly, I think students need to be "up to date" on immunizations or they are not allowed to attend school. The inactivity of not being up to date results in a penalty. Is this, too, despotism?

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