Obama Has a Mandate – but with Whom?
posted at 6:42 pm on September 21, 2009 by Dafydd ab Hugh
President Barack H. Obama was all over the broadcast map yesterday, reading the usual litany of whoppers, floppers, and gobstoppers that flows from the Teleprompter of the United States. (TOTUS — I picture an object like a Dalek from Dr. Who… “Exterminate! Exterminate!”)
Having nothing better to do (I mislaid my toenail clipper), I read an article quoting some of what our august president said this September.
Hot cars and health czars
Here is one of my favorites, where Obama argues in favor of an individual mandate for every American to have health insurance:
“What it’s saying is, is that we’re not going to have other people carrying your burdens for you any more than the fact that right now everybody in America, just about, has to get auto insurance,” Mr. Obama said on ABC’s “This Week.” “People say to themselves, that is a fair way to make sure that, if you hit my car, that I’m not covering all the costs.”
I have already accepted the arguments against such an individual mandate; but even back when I reluctantly accepted it, I never made an argument as foolish as this one. How dumb is it? Let me count just a few of the ways:
No, Mr. President; it’s not true that “everybody in America, just about, has to get auto insurance.” Only those people who (a) drive, (b) drive on the public roads, and (c) own a car have to buy auto insurance; that constitutes a lot less than (“everybody” minus “just about”). The remainder (children, non-drivers, those that drive only on private land, those that only borrow other people’s cars because they can’t afford one of their own) do not have to buy automobile insurance.
But under ObamaCare, everybody in America must buy insurance (or have it bought for them), no exceptions.
Even when you are required to buy auto insurance, you don’t have to buy insurance to protect yourself, unless you live in a state that requires vile and disgusting “no fault” insurance. In any other state, you only need to buy insurance for damage you cause to other people. If you don’t want to insure against damage to your own car — or your own body — that’s up to you.
But under ObamaCare, the mandate applies entirely to insurance to protect you, yourself from damage to you, yourself. It wouldn’t cover any damage you cause to someone else… just yourself.
Even in states that “require” insurance, you generally can opt out of the insurance mandate by posting a bond of some certain amount.
But under ObamaCare — fugeddaboudit. You won’t be able to opt out of the mandate just by posting a bond… or having a medical savings account (MSA), or catastrophic care, or what have you. In fact, you (or your employer) will almost certainly have to buy a gold-plated health insurance policy that covers everything, including abortions, fertility treatments, STD treatment, homeopathic treatment, acupuncture, colon cleansing, tooth whitening, and mental health care (which you may need after paying your premium each month).
Note, you won’t be able to use any of that stuff, or any other specialized care (including anesthesiology — what could go wrong?), because of rationing — cf. Canada. But by golly, at least you’ll be covered!
Here’s the next burst of risible rhetoric:
And now, the insurance mandate is being criticized by lawmakers and Americans who say that the cost of coverage will amount to a new tax that would violate the president’s campaign pledge against imposing new taxes on Americans who make under $250,000….
“My critics say everything is a tax increase,” Mr. Obama said on “This Week.” “For us to say that you’ve got to take a responsibility to get health insurance is absolutely not a tax increase.”
Huh; it’ll sure feel like a tax. The feds will say, “Either you spend several hundred dollars per year buying the insurance we tell you to buy, or else you pay a fine of several hundred dollars.” If it walks and squawks like a tax…
Technically, it’s not extortion if Guido says, “You got a nice place here; sure would be a shame if anything happened to it.” But I think everybody knows what Guido (and his capo) really mean.
Debates and mandates
Here’s the last. It’s not exactly an argument about health-care reform but rather about criticism of health-care reform; and it masquerades as a defense of such critics. But its absurdity lies not in the actual words but in the hidden meaning behind them:
Mr. Obama also said Sunday that he doesn’t agree with recent comments from former President Jimmy Carter that “an overwhelming portion” of the criticism over health care is based on the president’s race.
“This debate that is taking place is not about race. It’s about people being worried about how our government should operate,” he said. “I do think we all have an obligation to try to conduct this conversation in a very civil way.”
Allow me to quote from a very much more reliable narrator, Michael Barone:
I would submit that the president’s call for an end to “bickering” and the charges of racism by some of his supporters are the natural reflex of people who are not used to hearing people disagree with them and who are determined to shut them up.
This comes naturally to liberals educated in our great colleges and universities, so many of which have speech codes whose primary aim is to prevent the expression of certain conservative ideas and which are commonly deployed for that purpose….
Similarly, the “mainstream media” — the old-line broadcast networks, The New York Times, etc. — present a politically correct picture of the world. The result is that liberals can live in a cocoon, an America in which seldom is heard a discouraging word….
Speaker Nancy Pelosi has warned us that there’s a danger that intense rhetoric can provoke violence, and no decent person wants to see harm come to our president or other leaders. But it’s interesting that the two most violent incidents at this summer’s town hall meetings came when a union thug beat up a 65-year-old black conservative in Missouri and when a liberal protester bit off part of a man’s finger in California.
The absurdity of Obama’s argument above is that he still maintains the fiction — delusion? — that both sides are equally responsible for the “incivility;” I dispute that utterly. One side is saying, “Hey, let’s debate this revolutionary rewrite of the entire American health-care system… before Congress votes on it.”
The other side is saying something very different: “Shut up,” he explained.
Jokeses and hoaxes
It amazes me just how many truly, deeply unintelligent things this alleged genius says — says and defends, to the bitter end. If I didn’t know better, having been instructed by so many important people in government, in the Democrat Party, and in the sundry elite liberal media, I could almost begin to believe that we may not have as bright an Obamacle as we ordered.
Does Amazon have a refund policy on presidential elections?
Cross-posted on Big Lizards…
Recently in the Green Room: