Traditionally there is only one nationally imposed tax – federal income tax – which is designed to pay for those functions that must be carried out by national government. Resistance to the Obama healthcare reforms is as passionate as it is precisely because it imposes a federal requirement to purchase health insurance which seems to contravene the basic economic freedom guaranteed by the Constitution. The BBC obviously finds it impossible to believe that ordinary people could actually take issues like this seriously. (They can only be racists or hillibilly know-nothings.) The Corporation really ought to encourage its correspondents to get out more and talk to some of the articulate Americans who don’t spend their lives in liberal salons.