Well, as we all expected, Mrs. Bill now has her gazillion-dollar, increase-the-reach-of-the-federal-government health care fiasco plan out there for public inspection. Here’s what Rich Lowry has to say about it:

Hillary Care 2.0

According to Mrs. Bill’s plan, the government will mandate that every person must purchase health insurance. Questions: on what constitutional authority does she plan to do this? Put another way, can we name any other thing that the constitution mandates Americans purchase? We’ll wait…

Fact is, socialists like Mrs. Bill Clinton (and every other Democrat candidate, and many, many Republicans) don’t give a flying rip about the Constitution until they find some conservative stepping out of constitutional line, and then they profess a great love and respect for the document. But take it seriously? That’s asking way too much out of Mrs. Bill and her ilk…

22 responses »

  1. Hefe says:

    The constitution may not mandate it, but the governmant already requires the purchase of car insurance. Of course there are some differences, btu they are both “insurance”.

  2. Byron says:

    Incorrect, weedhoppa; you have spoken mistakenly. For 30 points, tell me why…

  3. Graham says:

    Do non-car-owners have to buy car insurance?

  4. Byron says:

    Graham gets the THIRTY points!!! Congrats, Graham!

    Use them wisely…

  5. Whatever says:

    So then the extension is that those with no health whatsoever to insure (that is, the dead) would not be required to have health insurance. Great point.

    It’s not like we don’t have a bunch of other things we’re required to pay for whether we ever use them or not. It’s just that we lump them all in under “taxes” and no one gets to line item question them.

    The constitution is a good thing, but trying to use it to stop what would actually be good for the country and it’s citizens is downright un-American.

  6. shuff says:

    “I hadn’t had a health problem to speak of in almost 7 years, until 2009 when they passed that bill and I about retched”

    No, seriously. I am flying so close each month to an empty bank account, I have to almost work magic to not go under. I’m sure there’s at least several thousand more Americans in a similar situation or worse. It’s alright, but it’s no fun. No fun to tighten the belt; character building, certainly, and a great mental challenge, but not fun. And it’s even less fun when you get that bill in the mail, for that thing you didn’t need or want.. why would you ever want to put EVERYONE in the country through that?

  7. Byron says:

    Whatever,

    I’m missing the reference to the dead; was there something in Rich Lowry’s article that prompted the comment? Now, as to the taxes comment, I’m certainly in favor of lowering taxes on everyone, lowering them significantly, in fact eliminating the IRS altogether, and also eliminating almost every government “service” beyond those very basic things that the Constitution enumerates.

    And no, the Constitution is more than a “good thing”; it is the LAW OF THE LAND. Now, if you want to change the Constitution, there are Constitutionally-provided means for doing that. But to say that it’s “un-American” to abide by the Constitution—which is what you’re saying—is, sorry, un-American.

    And that doesn’t even address the idea that Mrs. Bill’s health fiasco plan is “good for the country”. No…freedom is good for the country. Capitalism is good for the country. The massive intrusion of government into our lives is categorically bad for our country.

  8. shuff says:

    The government owns the roads. (another thing)

    No private person/company owns the public roads, and so on all roads we have the government’s rules. “On our roads, you shall drive never without insurance” is one of them. It’s got very little to do with the car. Everything about the car has to follow their rules, though, because you’re taking it on their road.

    They do not own private hospitals, like Butler Memorial Hospital, but they COULD conceivably change the laws so that they are REQUIRED to serve only patients who have insurance. Whether or not this is a good idea, is not the point.

    The point is that they do not own Me, in any sense, so in the absence of using a hospital under their regulation, they have no jurisdiction over what I do or do not purchase.

    Citizens are NOT subject to regulations issued by any executive department, except when acting as part of an organization being regulated.

    Citizens ARE subject to legislation, and answerable to the justice department. Important distinction.

    Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

  9. Don says:

    I’m sensing a visit from Mr. Troll.

    Whatever? Give me a break…

  10. Whatever says:

    The reference to being dead was for comparison with the auto insurance comment. People without autos aren’t required to have auto insurance. People without any health (therefore, dead) aren’t required to have any health insurance. In my opinion, that’s how valid that comparison is.

    I also did not say that you shouldn’t abide by the Constitution (imagine my total lack of shock that someone disagrees with the core here so they get wildly misquoted in rebuttal). People being healthy is a good thing. People trying to find a way to make sure people are healthy is a good thing. People throwing “that’s unconsitutional” around to try to stop that is not a good thing.

  11. Hefe says:

    Sorry Byron. I’ll stand by my comparison. The difference between forced to have health insurance and car insurance is negligible. They are both insurance, they would both be things I would be required to pay for. The only difference, is I could choose to not own a car, which is not really much of a choice. There’s a point where the “choice in the matter” argument becomes a non sequitor (hope I’m using that one right). Not quite the same thing a choosing a bank that has a smaller ATM fee.

  12. Byron says:

    To Hefe first:

    But that is the point: you are not required to drive. You may feel that it’s not much of a choice, and I’d agree in one sense, because I certainly need that practically, but nonetheless I am not required to buy insurance. Driving is a privilege, and in order to exercise that privilege, I have an obligation. You are only required to purchase insurance if you choose to exercise a privilege. I can choose (as some friends of ours do) not to own a car, and these folks are not required to buy insurance for that non-existent car. For me, as for most Americans, the benefit of driving outweighs whatever negative might accrue as a result of having to purchase auto insurance. Could the day come when I’d feel differently? Certainly. If auto insurance were to triple or quadruple in price, there’d be many, I believe, who’d weigh the cost/benefits and decide not to own a car, who’d seek out alternative transportation in some form or fashion. The point is that we as Americans have a choice in the matter, even if under current circumstances, the choice is for most of us a very easy one to make. But the difference you call “negligible” is the difference that makes the difference.

    Now to What,

    “Wildly misquoted”? Please. If I misquoted you, then you must speak a heck of a lot more clearly. You said that the Constitution was a “good thing”, but effectively that it ought to be ignored if it stands in the way of “doing what is right for the country”. How else can your words be read other than to say that? In your rebuttal, you seem to effectively reinforce what you said earlier.

    The Constitution is (or was intended to be, better put it that way) the law of the land. The simple question is, “do we go by the law, or do we not?” And if “Mrs. Bill 2.0” contains provisions that are in fact contrary to the Constitution, what are we to do? You don’t like “throwing ‘that’s unconstitutional’ around”, but what do we do when a given proposal in fact is unconstitutional? Do we simply ignore the rules that we profess to live by as a nation in favor of some vague benefit? What then do we do when a majority of Congress, or the President, would decide to simply ignore other parts of the Constitution in the name of the “public good”? If we can justify ignoring the law in the arena of health care, why can’t we then justify it in any/every other area? If the government won’t play by its own rules, then how can any rules be enforced at all?

    If the Constitution isn’t to your liking; if it ought to be changed in order to accommodate Mrs. Bill’s ideas about health care, then there are mechanisms for doing so, but until those mechanisms are enacted, and the Constitution indeed is changed, then as a nation of laws, we are bound to obey it.

    If I’ve misquoted you, What, then I would ask you to answer questions like these, to clarify what you really mean, because it’s hard for me to understand you in any other way than to read you to say, “hang the law when it comes to health care; we’ve got bigger fish to fry”.

  13. Hefe says:

    OK, Byron. I’ll bite on the difference. Let’s say that Hilary modifies her plan so that you are not required to buy health insurance for yourself, but it is mandatory for any children you have. It would effectively accomplish the same thing in one generation, yet you could “choose” not to buy this health insurance by not having children. Is this similar enough to the other mandatory insurance? Would you then mot have a problem with that, since the obligatory choice has been introduced?

  14. Byron says:

    Nice try, but…it is a right to have children, while it is a privilege to drive a car. Though some might wish it to be otherwise, nobody can be prohibited from having as many children as he/she should wish. This is recognized as a fundamental human right (and let’s not follow the obtuse line of reasoning about “what about those who can’t conceive?” That’s a different issue, and we all understand it thusly). Driving is not such a right; there are a variety of people who, for a variety of reasons, are not able to exercise, or who do not choose to exercise, the privilege. None of these folks are required to purchase insurance, because they do not/cannot exercise the privilege.

    The difference is to be found, it seems to me, between “privilege” and “right”.

  15. Hefe says:

    Well I will continue to play devil’s advocate here. It seems the goal posts have just moved. Is is about optional vs non-optional, or is it right vs privilege?

  16. Whatever says:

    One, there are a great many things that presidents and legislators – including the current ones – have done that are either unconsitutional and highly questionable as to whether they are constitutional or not. I don’t want this to necessarily turn into a bash W session, but if you’ve paid any attention since 9-11 and are honest about it, you know that is true. SO trying to turn this into some discussion about following the law or breaking it not only misses the bigger picture, but also doesn’t ring true in the face of the reality of history, especially recent history with that question.
    Two, IMO, people often just try to use “unconstitutional” as the excuse when they don’t like something personally. That’s what it sounds like here with you Byron.
    I stand by my opinion that universal health care is a good thing and if the constitution is somehow standing in the way of doing something good for the country, then it should be changed. And I do still believe it is “un-American” to stand by a cry “unconstitutional” at something that would be good for the country instead of working to change the constitution (which is what I said before – and is not anywhere close to what you attributed to me).

  17. Derlin says:

    Whoa, how is having a child a right? I am only seeing it as a privilege. It takes two to dance this tango, so one has to find another willing to get close enough for a few seconds, and then have nine months of patience. So, if I can’t find anyone on my own willing to mate, does the government as enforcer of rights pledge to provide someone for me (or worse, provide me with a “get out of jail card” good for one count of rape)? What about sterility? Both adoption and fertility treatments are expensive. So’s this website: http://marryourdaughter.biz/ (don’t worry, it’s a hoax). I have a right to private property, which would apply well to a car, but not so well to a child.

    Of course, once children are present, I believe parenting is a right, thought not a universal one.

    I like Hefe’s suggestion, to mandate minimal health coverage for children; people should have to think before baby-making (or at the least be forced to think twice before doing it again).

    I definitely think we need a health insurance overhaul, I’m just not convinced that the government can do that best by entering into the insurance market itself.

    Does health care coverage fall into the okay to price-gouge category? I can see that people can change their ATM habits to work around fees, but one can only do so much to change one’s health to make coverage an option for many people.

  18. Byron says:

    Hefe,

    You’re making me think, but let me try again. I have a fundamental human right (I’ll answer you on that later, Derlin) to bear a child. There is no such fundamental human right to drive a car. The government can rightly deprive me of the privilege of driving a car (I drive drunk; I commit vehicular homicide; I fail to purchase insurance). The government cannot deprive me of the right to conceive, under normal circumstance (if I commit a crime, and am locked up, of course, a whole lot of my rights are taken away, the right to conceive a child being one of them, for the length of my incarceration, but that is a corollary punishment).

    And thus, in the exercise of my fundamental rights as a human being, I find no instance of the government being able to demand that I purchase something. What makes a good point in one sense: taxes do something similar, often—which is why I personally believe that Social Security, for instance, should be dismantled on moral grounds (let’s just leave that for another discussion another day, shall we? Thanks.).

    I find no constitutional warrant for the government forcing me to purchase something that does not entail along with it the granting of a privilege by that government (a driver’s license, a hunting license, etc.). And by the way, though I don’t know the numbers, it is a fallacy to suggest that the 40-something million Americans without health care are all in the “can’t afford it club”. There are plenty who do not have it for other reasons, who do not at all see it as a “privilege” in any sense of the word, but rather as a needless drain on their finances. For some of these, to be sure, they’re acting stupidly, but there are folks who are self-insured, for instance, and the government has no business telling folks who don’t need and don’t want health insurance coverage that they must purchase it.

  19. Byron says:

    What,

    I wholeheartedly concur with your first premise: government, whether Republican- or Democrat-run, has increasingly ignored the Constitution. Robert Bork’s The Tempting of America: The Political Seduction of the Law is a tour-de-force (look it up, Don; it’s not a bicycle race) on the subject of the political abuse of the Constitution. Roe v. Wade is but one shining example of the Supreme Court ignoring the Constitution as well. That point is well-taken.

    But your upshot is wanting, What. Effectively, you seem to reason, “well, we haven’t done a consistent job of following the Constitution at many points, so let’s ignore it even further”. The solution to thirst isn’t to drink more and more salt water; the solution to unconstitutional government actions isn’t to broaden the scope of unconstitutional government actions. No, we need to call all of our lawmakers back to the Constitution—which is why we must elect a President who is committed to appointing strict constructionists to the bench (like Mike Huckabee!!!). That alone won’t solve the problem, of course, but it’s a start. Those same lawmakers need themselves to respect and defend the Constitution. But you seem to say, “well, we’ve ignored it 10 times, let’s ignore it another”. I don’t think that’s much of an argument.

    Sure, What, I’m sure that some folks might do what you suggest—but again, does that mean that nothing can be spoken of as “unconstitutional”? I ask, where is the constitutional warrant for Mrs. Bill’s insistence that every citizen purchase health care? If such cannot be found—and the onus is on the proposers/defenders to justify their actions constitutionally—then the action is, by definition, unconstitutional. Doesn’t matter if I love it or hate it. If we were going by what I like or hate, I’d call Viagra ads, hip-hop, and the Dallas Cowboys “unconstitutional”, but it wouldn’t make them so.

    And sorry, What, but I don’t see anywhere where you suggested that we should work to change the Constitution. If you did, point it out to me (post #), please, because I surely missed it. Also though, if you did, then I wholeheartedly agree with you. If Mrs. Bill 2.0 is a good idea for the country (and we’ll disagree on that), but it is indeed unconstitutional (as I think is clearly true), then by all means, work to change the Constitution in order to allow for it, and then write the laws accordingly.

  20. Byron says:

    Finally to Derlin. Yes, it is a fundamental human right to procreate, but of course, the exercise of that right is contingent upon certain factors as you suggest. But this isn’t noteworthy, once you think about it. The 2nd Amendment conveys to us the right to bear arms, but that right is unable to be exercised by, say, quadriplegics. The government isn’t bound to get me a mate so I can procreate, nor to fix Hefe’s “ED”, nor is it bound to cure paralysis so I can hunt ducks, nor is it bound to create a designer religion for me so that I can worship according to the dictates of my conscience if I can’t find a faith that I believe to be true, or “fulfilling”, or that helps me “Discover the Champion in Me” (guess where that little gem comes from!). I have the right to own private property, but if I’m penniless and in debt, I can’t well exercise that right. Doesn’t mean I don’t have it, and sure doesn’t mean that the government is obligated to ensure that I’m in a position to exercise it (although if we elect Dennis Kucinich, he’ll find a way to make that happen, I’m sure.). I flew on a plane once with Dennis Kucinich (to his credit, he flew coach), and all I could think was, “aren’t you missing from the set of Star Wars? ‘Phone’s for you, Mr. Kucinich; it’s George Lucas.'”

    Why would we need to mandate minimal health coverage for children (I’m not sure Hefe is suggesting that, are you, Hefe?)? No one is turned away from the hospital because of a failure to be able to pay. That’s the law. Currently. Right now. Kids aren’t dying because hospitals won’t treat.

    Finally, to your final point on price-gouging, look, the system is broken, I agree. If anything I’ve said comes off as “things are all cool now”, well, that’s not what I mean to say. The question is, to fix them, do we go in the direction of more government intervention, more government control, or do we go in other direction, more free-market with a minimum of government safeguards? We don’t have a free-market system currently; we have a witches’ brew of snails, pigtails, and newt’s eye (no, not Newt).

    The fundamental disagreement, when you boil it all down, is whether government tends to solve such problems or make them worse. To me, the evidence is one-sided: government makes most everything less efficient, less effective, less free. That doesn’t mean that there is no place for government, but that place ought to be limited (sounds vaguely…constitutional!).

  21. Derlin says:

    It looks like at least one state, Indiana, permits you to self insure your motor vehicles. Of course, to do so, you tie up $40,000 for your first car, and $20,000 for each additional car, up to $1,000,000. I think I’ll stick with private insurance for the time being.

    Click to access A00010.PDF

  22. Byron says:

    As would I, as would I.

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