Tuesday, July 03, 2012

We Have Lost: It's a Tax! It's a Penalty!

A difference without a distinction

The Supreme Court lands another blow on the American people. I remember being dumbstruck by the Kelo Decision. In that landmark decision the Court ruled in favor of the City of New London, Connecticut which essentially acted as a strongman by seizing private property from one group of people (homeowners) for the benefit of a more powerful private interest (a giant pharmaceutical company). Ordinarily private property can only taken if there will be direct benefit to the public at large. The tragic irony is that the company never did build on the site - the economy tanked, remember.

In the case against the Affordable Care Act or Obama-Care I am not at all surprised the court ruled for the President's side. It remains to be seen if it will help or hurt the President's re-election chances, but this monstrosity will hurt the country as a whole. What may be constitutional is not necessarily good policy. You buy insurance or you pay a tax/penalty.

With these words the justification was found to allow the Affordable Care Act to stand in it's entirety... “Members of this Court are vested with the authority to interpret the law; we possess neither the expertise nor the prerogative to make policy judgements.  Those decisions are entrusted to our Nation’s elected leaders, who can be thrown out of office if the people disagree with them.  It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices.” (Chief Justice John Roberts, 27 Jun 2012)

So we move on.

Already 13000 pages of regulations have been written - but as yet not put into practice. The IRS will be hiring 800 new auditors immediately with a eventual goal of 16000. This is going to improve the health care system - even I can see that. However...

Medical schools are already seeing a dearth of new medical students. Why would any bright young person spend years training while racking up mountains of debt only to find they will be forced to become unionized government workers like postal carriers and teachers. Don't think that's the goal? It's time you wake up.

Somewhere in that ridiculous bill is a law against doctor owned hospitals. Does it matter at all to you that doctor owned hospitals and clinic systems have been the best run, most mistake free and successful health institutions in the country? The innovation that has given America the most dynamic and advanced health care stems from doctors and systems being allowed to take risks and chances on new therapies and procedures. This phenomenon is already being destroyed by just the fear this new law instills in corporate lawyers. Hospitals have begun forcing doctors to perform surgeries and procedures in a system-wide approved manner only. Innovation is already dying.

This and many other tragedies await us all if this monstrosity is allowed to stand. Of course you won't read or hear about these kinds of esoteric things. You'll only hear that the Republicans want to kick your ADULT child off your employer's health plan. You'll hear that Republicans want to deny insurance for all per-existing conditions and force 10 million people to use emergency rooms for their health care. Frankly that is as much the Republican's fault as it is the rascally media's. They need to clearly articulate a better plan, but they won't (because they're idiots).

We have lost. Don't kid yourself, this will bankrupt the country and the actual health care system will deteriorate - and you'll pay a lot more for it.



TJW said...

First Kelo, Then McCain Fiengold, Now this, why do conservatives keep expecting the Supreme Court to interpret the constitution as it was intended, as a bulwark against the depredations of whim and capricious societal shifts. Garbage legislation keeps getting passed because the republicrats don't have the ca'jones to stop it. They are so worried about offending anyone they accomplish nothing accept to put the country in the position of relying on the "Supremes" to do their job properly and they always get it wrong!