Thursday, March 25, 2010

Remember When Candidate Obama Was Against An Individual Mandate For Health Insurance?

That was then.

24 comments:

maxutils said...

The individual mandate is one of the few things in this bill that makes sense. Good for him to recognize that, at least.

Darren said...

Except that it's un-American. Since when can, or even should, the government tell me what I must buy? Seriously, if they can make me buy this, why not make me buy a GM car? Or certain types of food? Or anything else?

There's no justification for this at all, and nothing material has changed between the debate shown in the video and now--except that Obama is now president and will take anything he can call a victory.

maxutils said...

How about police protection? Or jails? Or the military? Or roads? I'm inclined to agree with you that health care is a case where we shouldn't be required to, but if we're going to do it that way, then no one who can't pay for their own care, either by insurance or on their own, should ever be treated. If your willing to take that step, I'm with you. Since that's never going to happen, however, this is the next best alternative. We're already paying for those without insurance . . .mandating coverage will reduce our costs by spreading out the revenue base.

Darren said...

I understand the "economic" argument, but it doesn't jibe with the "freedom" argument.

I thought lefties wanted to "keep your laws off my body"....

maxutils said...

True. In this case, since I want to have health insurance anyway, economics trumps freedom. And, please don't imply I'm a lefty. Probably not intentional, but still . . .

Darren said...

I didn't imply you're a leftie, you inferred it. Guilty conscience? :-)

mazenko said...

Un-American? How, Darren? Under what definition of "American"?

Laws are not passed on "definitions" of what is "American" or "un-American." It's what is legal and constitutional.

FICA is your answer.

The government has a constitutional right to tax, and it has required you to pay a tax - a tax into a social insurance system - your whole working life. In fact, you are subject to the tax simply by being born an American, as you are automatically enrolled and assigned a number. It mandated that you participate in an insurance program.

That has held up as precedence for 75 years. It is the law of the land that has been subject to Constitutional judicial review. That makes it "American."

And, all successful industrialized economies have acknowledged the need for compliance in a large pool that makes the system work. For, if we are going to require all hospitals to provide emergency care on demand, we have a similar right/need to require being insured for it.

Somebody is paying for the health care. Let's make sure we're rational about the shared costs.

Sure, Obama changed his mind. As Keynes said, "when the facts change, my opinion changes. What do you do?"

Darren said...

What facts changed?

As for being un-American, I ask again:
Since when can, or even should, the government tell me what I must buy? Seriously, if they can make me buy this, why not make me buy a GM car? Or certain types of food? Or anything else?

mazenko said...

Since when?

Since they require you to "buy" Social Security and Medicare. You don't have to use it, but you have to "buy" this social insurance.

Held up as Constitutional by judicial review.

It's not about a "good" or "product." That GM car and food reference is a straw man, and you know it has no relevance to this issue. Reducto ad absurdem is a logical fallacy.

Chanman said...

Let's make this simple, Max and Mazenko:

Kindly point to the enumerated power in the Constitution that authorizes the Federal government to make us buy health insurance.

One of you mentioned the military. That is enumerated in Article I, Section 8, Clauses 12 and 13.

See? It can be done. Now do it.

Darren said...

Mazenko, the government is requiring me, under penalty of fine, to purchase a service from a private, for-profit firm. You really have no problem with that?

mazenko said...

No.

mazenko said...

Collect taxes and regulate interstate commerce.

Done.

mazenko said...

The state requires me to have liability auto insurance.

Problem? Illegal? Unconstitutional? Illogical? Irrational? Unethical? Un-conservative?

No, I don't think so.

Darren said...

You're not required to have car insurance as a condition of *breathing* in this country. Gawd, I expected a better argument than that tired one.

maxutils said...

Chanman . . . there isn't one. Unless, HMOs are given the right to compete across state lines is granted, in which case Mazenko is right. I don't support the bill . . . but, if you are going to have national health care, it doesn't even have a prayer of working without mandated coverage. I speak only of efficiency. Now, Chanman, could you point to the provision in the Constitution that permits federal authorities from arresting medicinal marijuana growers in California who are selling their pot to Californians with legal prescriptions? That seems to be a health care issue that has been rightfully decided by our state . . .

allen (in Michigan) said...

So Mike, you're OK with Plessey v Ferguson then? Wilson's segregation of federal service? FDR's concentration camps? I figure if you're up for charmless rationalizations for policies du jour then maybe you can exert yourself a bit and see how those rationalizations work out when applied to somewhat less popular issues.

Oh, and as far as your state mandating auto insurance, it ought to be clear who benefited most from that policy and it isn't insurance "buyers".

Of course states do have different powers - not rights - then the federal government but what's a minor impediment like the Constitution when there's so much good to be done by strong-arming people?

Flip Flop said...

Republicans we're FOR the public mandate before they were against it. Was it un-American when Republicans supported it?

Darren said...

Not that I believe much in the Huffington Post, but if certain Republicans supported that idea at one time, then it was wrong. Maybe that's why the idea didn't go anywhere before, but now that socialists run the country it's become the law of the land.

Chanman said...

Nice circular argument Mazenko. Yes, Congress has the power to collect taxes in order to pay for the enumerated powers that are listed in Article I, Section 8.

Now that we have established this, kindly tell me which enumerated power in Article I, Section 8 gives the Congress the power to control my health insurance.

Oh that's right; you mentioned interstate commerce. First off, since we on the Right have been screaming from the top of our lungs that we should be able to buy health insurance from companies across state lines - but can't - then what interstate commerce are you talking about? Secondly, how is it interstate commerce for Congress and the President telling me that I have to buy health insurance against my will? Being forced to engage in commerce is now interstate commerce according to your twisted logic?

Chanman said...

Max: Who said I was in favor of the feds overriding state drug laws?

I have always opposed federal drug enforcement laws.

You might have asked my position before you presumed it.

Chanman said...

By way Mazenko, the big problem with your useless car insurance analogy is that like you yourself said, the STATE requires it. There is no FEDERAL law that says I have to have car insurance; the STATE of California tells me that. If I really don't like it, then I can move to another state. With this health care control law, I have nowhere to go to get away from it.

Not to mention, the state of California only requires that I get liability insurance for my car in case I injure or kill someone else. This is not the case with the health care control law.

I have an idea: how about busybodies like you stop trying to control my life and leave me the hell alone? Why are you so eager to control other people?

maxutils said...

Chanman, good for you for being consistent. I wish more conservatives, especially those on the Supreme Court, shared your belief. I agree with you that health care shouldn't be mandated for those who don't want it. The problem is, those people can currently make that decision, then get into an auto accident, be treated at the hospital, and not pay. Or, take their kids into the ER, and have them treated at grossly inflated rates, and not pay. Give me a system where that doesn't happen, and I'm on your side. I've come to the conclusion that that will never happen, though; the next best alternative is to require that everyone carry insurance so that they are paying in, at least something, and using the least expensive health care available.

Chanman said...

If people can get into an auto accident and expect us taxpayers to pay for the bills against our will because they don't have health insurance, then that is exactly the root of the problem now isn't it?

It's an easy fix: Stop using taxpayer money to pay the medical bills for people who don't have health insurance. Make them declare bankruptcy, go on a payment plan, go to a charity hospital - I don't care.