Tuesday, March 23, 2010

20 Ways ObamaCare Will Take Away Our Freedoms

20 Ways ObamaCare Will Take Away Our Freedoms


Mark said...

1-10 look to be restrictions on the individual freedom to get sick/injured and then either 1) make the taxpayers pay for it, or 2) pay for it yourself, or if you can't, go bankrupt.
11-14 look to be regulations on the health care and insurance industries in order to begin moderating costs.
15-20 look to be methods to begin paying for the skyrocketing health care costs, mostly targeted at companies and individuals who can afford a marginal tax increase.
So in general, reasonable. I can live with all that if it means expanding access to health care.

And the Franklin quote is a straw man, since this isn't a matter of giving up freedoms to attain security, but creating a better whole by rearranging the parts.

Tom said...

Mark, respectfully, you are a Canadian, which means you have already surrendered these freedoms, so of course it sounds reasonable. And "expanding access to health care" is a straw man talking point, since the problems in the U.S. are not access, they are cost. We could have and could still better manage cost by making the system, for starters, more open and competitive, not less.

It is difficult to make the case that the Franklin quotation is a straw man, since it is the proponents of nationalized health care who are always claiming that health care is a natural right, equal to or more important than individual freedom.

Paul said...

Hmm...from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. Now where have I heard that before?

jeff bloodworth said...

There is simply no other way to cover pre-existing conditions without a mandate. Moreover, we already have national healthcare--it's called the emergency room. It is way too expensive treat the non-insured with pricey emergency room care (for ailments that are preventable and treatable via primary care doctors). In addition, the non-insured with life-threatening ailments receive care that we all pay for. This is not communism (Paul)--perhaps we have restricted the freedom of young people to make everyone else pay for their catastrophic illnesses. Are these core freedoms? To me (and a lot of Americans) this is the price of civilization. If conservatives would have acted on pre-existing conditions, health care access and the like--you wouldn't have seen this bill. David Frum, as usual, has many keen insights.

Paul said...

"15-20 look to be methods to begin paying for the skyrocketing health care costs, mostly targeted at companies and individuals who can afford a marginal tax increase."

I was commenting on this statement. When does the government stop taking? When do they ever take a pay cut? When do they ever scale back their operations when times are tough? When do they ever do with less?

This bill isn't communism; I know that. It's national socialism and to argue otherwise is foolish. It's a huge steaming pile of crap designed to destroy private insurance companies and transfer wealth from the haves to the have-nots.

There are much better solutions to the problems with health care. This bill swings the pendulum WAY too far to the left and the American people will regret the day it passed.

Paul said...

But I'm just a racist, homophobic teabagger...so what do I know?

Paul said...


jeff bloodworth said...


You quoted Marx not Blair. If you are not making that connection--don't quote a communist. We already have a mixed economy. This idea of "socialism" versus capitalism is a false choice. Once you have social security, student loans, and Medicare--you have a mixed economy. Obama's bill tilts the mix to the left but are we now "socialist" in a way we weren't before? I don't think so.

Neither soc. sec, Medicare, or Pell Grants destroyed the republic. I think we can weather the storm--even if it is a bad bill. Time to take a deep breath and relax. Lots of countries have much more thoroughgoing health packages and they have not bankrupted themselves. I think Americans are smart enough to provide health insurance while making their welfare state distinctly American (meaning smaller and less generous than W. Europe)

Paul said...

When does the government stop taking? When do they ever take a pay cut? When do they ever scale back their operations when times are tough? When do they ever do with less?

Did you even read this part of my comment?

Paul said...

"This idea of "socialism" versus capitalism is a false choice. Once you have social security, student loans, and Medicare--you have a mixed economy. Obama's bill tilts the mix to the left but are we now "socialist" in a way we weren't before? I don't think so.

Neither soc. sec, Medicare, or Pell Grants destroyed the republic. I think we can weather the storm--even if it is a bad bill. Time to take a deep breath and relax. Lots of countries have much more thoroughgoing health packages and they have not bankrupted themselves."

No need to lecture me on economics; I teach if for a living. And just watch as these socialist programs (SS, M/M, HCR) eat away at our liberties over the next two decades. This staggered socialism is death by a thousand cuts and I will stand on principle to stop if from happening.

Paul said...

"Neither soc. sec, Medicare, or Pell Grants destroyed the republic."

They are eating into our economic freedom and will continue to do so.

"I think we can weather the storm--even if it is a bad bill."

'I think' is not good enough for me. Not a risk I'm willing to take.

"Time to take a deep breath and relax."

Ahh...relax, everything will be all right. This is exactly the strategy devised by liberals to try to disarm conservatives that the American Thinker piece discusses at length.

"Lots of countries have much more thoroughgoing health packages and they have not bankrupted themselves."

But they pay much higher taxes, have much less freedom, slower growing economies and a lower standard of living.

Sorry to be so confrontational, Jeff, but this HCR bill is an issue that I'm going to budge on.

And Frum is full of crap:

Paul said...

"Lots of countries have much more thoroughgoing health packages and they have not bankrupted themselves."

They also have virtually no money in the budget for national defense, either.

jeff bloodworth said...


A principled opposition to healthcare is all fine and good. But your tone and tenor is way out of proportion to the actual legislation. All wealthy countries have such programs (ours isn't particularly generous) and last time I checked Sweden, Britain, Canada and the like remain free, democratic, and prosperous. Maybe, just maybe, conservatives could be wrong. Liberals have been wrong on any number of issues--and so have conservatives. A bit of humility and sense of proportion are healthy for everyone. You sound a bit unhinged. Dude, it's a healthcare system. Taxes will rise, growth might be impeded by a few tenths of a percentage points--but it isn't the apocalypse. We don't need to mimic the Glenn Becks and Al Sharptons of the world. The republic will stand and pretty soon we will all wonder--why there was ever such a fuss.

Paul said...

I'm guessing you didn't read the American Thinker piece so I'll excerpt the relevant parts:

"The new plan (Democratic strategy) is designed to accelerate the public through a mass analogue of the "seven stages of grief" (shock, denial, anger, etc.) and quickly get to "acceptance" of their federal government health care takeover and looming European-style, cradle-to-grave social welfare state."

"And they will constantly hammer that this takeover is "the law of the land" that will "never be repealed" and must be accepted as a fait accompli. Anyone who disagrees with them will be portrayed as "dangerously angry" and a potential threat for "violence" in order to paint dissenters as "extremists"."

"But mainly he and his surrogates will also be trying to "dispel fear and myths" in order to get you to "calm down" and accept your new transition from citizen to subject."

jeff bloodworth said...


"citizen to subject," really? You need to quit eating your ideology by the mouthful. You are against a bill--but don't conflate your opposition as some sort of defense of democracy. It ain't that. Democracy means that sometimes you have to accept laws you don't like. I remember similar rhetoric against Clinton in the 90s--just like now, it is inflated and overheated. Work for repeal but people who believe they are fighting against the forces of darkness are usually deluding themselves. This isn't Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union...it is a vibrant democracy with citizens who disagree vehemently. It should be that way. But nobody is reducing you and me into a subject. That is just dumb.

Paul said...

Whatever, dude. Enjoy your servitude. I'm going to fight against it.

Tom said...

I have a suggestion: As always, the terms communism and fascism and even socialism do not apply in the American context. On the other hand, tyranny is a foundational concept for the United States.

The debate over this bill is not whether or not it is communist or fascist, it is whether or not we think it is giving the federal government tyrannical powers. I suspect that Paul thinks so. I do too. And make no mistake, that distinction is why this is not politics as usual. It is not even about democracy either. The founding fathers designed our system of checks and balances because democracies can be tyrannical too. If our system--including the states, the courts, and upcoming elections--do not work to stop this tyranny, then this is only going to get uglier.

jeff bloodworth said...

Tyranny?? Huge Democratic majorities passed a bill. The healthcare bill includes nothing extreme or out of the ordinary, in the context of Western democracies. We had an election--one side won and then it passed its agenda. that isn't tyranny. This sort of rhetoric is eventually going to lead to violence--someone is going to get killed. Now, Bigtent won't be the cause but conservatives with large mouthpieces are going to motivate a crazy person (not a conservative) to do something awful.

Paul said...

The only point I will take issue with is that socialism doesn't apply in the American political context. I think Eugene Debs and Bernie Sanders would beg to differ. BTW, when Obama wasn't voting present, his voting record was to the left of Sanders. Socialism is government ownership of the means of production. They own GM and are seeking to take control of the financial markets, the health care industry, and the student loan industry.

Make no mistake, this bill was the tipping point for a majority of Americans. You can run interference for the Dems by accusing people of violence that hasn't happened yet (except for the violence perpetuated by the SEIU against Kenneth Gladney and the New Black Panthers against Philadelphia voters), but nothing that is said here is going to get anybody killed. Nothing that conservatives with huge mouthpieces say is going to get anybody killed. The only remedies Tom discussed are legal remedies such as elections, court challenges and states' challenges. Stop making things up.
And you also backed up Tom's point about democracies being capable of majoritarian tyranny with your equivalent of Obama's "I won" comment.

Tom said...

Tyranny is oppressive power, most commonly exerted by government. Democracies are just as subject to tyrannical power as any other form of government, which is why we have checks and balances. It should give all of us pause the way that this major a piece of legislation was hammered through in a completely partisan fashion that has thus far run roughshod over those checks and balances. In our system, even strong majorities must compromise.

Feel free to dismiss the concerns, that is your right. But for many Americans, including this one, both the content of the bill and the manner in which it was passed are strong indicators of a federal government trying to take on oppressive powers--taking freedoms to attain security (and phony security at that).

Perhaps I'm being unreasonable--believe me I have thought a lot about this issue. But perhaps it is also worth wondering why a generally reasonable guy would use the term tyranny to describe what is going on. I'm terrified by what our government has done, and I do not think I'm alone. If that sounds scary, then good, maybe we can get back to the messy business of compromising.

Stephen said...

Check out the Andrew Busch article I linked.

DocCox said...

Democratic majorities?!?!?!? Water is shut off in a House Dem's district in California when he is a no vote on healthcare. House Dem changes to yes and, shcokingly, irrigation for all! Sounds like tyranny to me. Nay, sir! It sounds like the leading edge of a cultural purge! (now communism is back into this debate!)

jeff bloodworth said...


You make a good point that since you are reasonable and smart that your use of tyranny should give me pause--it does--I take your ideas seriously. I don't like fundamental disagreements in principle with people I respect--b/c it does enter my mind that they could be right.

I just don't understand why healthcare laws similar to Canada, and much weaker ones at that, are somehow tyrannical. I honestly don't get it.

As for violence, let's remember that during the Clinton years a plane was flown into the White House and the Oklahoma City Bombings. These were perpetrated by nuts--but just like the Weathermen, overheated rhetoric can induce unbalanced idealists to do some awful things. I know that you Tom don't use the term lightly but those with much bigger megaphones using such words lead me to believe someone is going to get killed. That shouldn't silence dissent but I wish the Becks and Limbaughs (and the obscure Internet radio freaks) would be careful.

Paul said...

Cite one comment Rush has made that would incite violence. I'll wait as long as you need me to.
In other news, Castro endorses the plan!


jeff bloodworth said...


If you read what I wrote--I never claimed Rush incited violence. By calling healthcare "lawless" (which is patently absurd) and other overheated and silly things someone is going to this very seriously, too seriously, and run with it. Were liberals and leftists responsible for the Weathermen? No. Were Rush and Gingrich responsible for McVeigh? No.

But--over the top rhetoric often leads to violence. Call the bill horrible, awful, a recession-inducer, a job-killer,---all kinds of things. But passing it was completely legal, democratic, and quite mainstream. Don't you think many liberals felt similar things in regards to the war in Iraq? Though I supported the war, I understand how frustrating it must have been for folks who didn't vote for Bush to watch him wage a war they hate. Yes, he was called all sorts of irresponsible and hate-filled things so the Left does this as well. That doesn't make it good for our political culture. We saw this movie in the 90s--we don't have an audience Paul, it is ok to concede that the other side might be right, once in a while.

g_rob said...

I don't think it's absurd to suggest that something Limbaugh or Beck preaches could lead to violent acts. Beck, at least, consistently speaks as if armed revolution is only days away and that his viewers/listeners need to take up arms in order to protect themselves from the goose-stepping fascists out to get them.

dcat said...

From Denver's ABC affiliate in August 2008:

Limbaugh "said the riots would ensure a Democrat is not elected as president, and his listeners have a responsibility to make sure the riots happen. 'Riots in Denver, at the Democrat Convention, would see to it that we don't elect Democrats,' Limbaugh said during Wednesday's radio broadcast. He then went on to say that's the best thing that could happen to the country."

Look -- some of the talk here is just insane. Tyranny? Oppressive power? Communism? Socialism? National Socialism? This is absurd. Seriously -- it is absurd. And it is absurdity coming from people who have spent virtually their entire adult lives attending public colleges and universities and who in most cases that I know of work for the state or even the federal government.

The Democrats, who ran on health care in 2008 and won handily in both Congress and the White House, then went ahead and after a year of work passed legislation that was what many Republicans once embraced as an acceptable health care policy.

After eight years of torture and wireless wiretapping and claims of outsized executive privilege, and accusations that those who disagreed with them lacked patriotism.

Furthermore, I have no idea what freedom we are losing. And when people ask "when does the government stop taking" I have to ask myself, when do we start paying for what we take? If conservatives actually cut spending when they got into power, well, that I would disagree with but I'd respect it. Instead Reagan never proposed a balanced budget, and Bush the Younger? Let's be serious.

Finally, for now, when Tom says "the content of the bill and the manner in which it was passed are strong indicators of a federal government trying to take on oppressive powers--taking freedoms to attain security (and phony security at that)" I honestly am at a loss. What "manner" are you referring to? Passing with 60 votes in the senate, with 219 in the House and then 220 to use an approach, reconciliation, that Republicans used regularly when they controlled Congress? By threatening to use Deem and Pass which Republicans used regularly when they were in power and then not actually doing so? And what "phony security" are we talking about?

But then again it is true as Jeff pointed out -- this shrill scaremongering happened after Social Security, after Medicare, and after the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act.

We are not less free now, and as all of this comes to pass a large number of people will be considerably more free. This is how policy works in the United States. those of us on the left believe that there are things that government can and must do, and that they can do better than the private sector. Conservatives disagree. This isn't about tyranny or socialism or communism or national socialism. It's about disagreements over the role of government that manifested themselves in a policy that we believe will benefit many millions of Americans. Disagree, fine. But don't tell me that we are any closer to tyranny now than we were under GW Bush. I don't buy it. And if I'd have made arguments half as shrill about the Bush administration as Paul is making here he'd have absolutely been ruthless in his hamhanded way in trying to attack that shrillness.

Step outside of the echo chamber, fellas. There are no jackboots waiting for you. There are real tyrants out there. Proclaiming that the duly elected officials of our government are among them diminishes the accuser, not the accused.


Tom said...

"It is landmark legislation, the most important since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Joe Biden hit it just right: It's a Big Fucking Deal." http://dcatblog.blogspot.com/2010/03/me-on-health-care-self-indulgence-alert.html

Agreed. Now find any legislation since the end of Recontruction that is this important and that passed along perfectly partisan lines, and, if the polls are any indication, against the wishes of the majority of the population. That includes constitutional amendments, the Civil Rights Acts, Voting Rights Act, and declarations of wars and authorization for the use of force, like Vietnam and Iraq.

Feel free to throw the hypocricy argument around all you want, but like Jeff says, we don't have an audience around here, so save the talking points for the next television interview. Maybe instead, just for fun, we actually talk about content of arguments instead of some highly selective standard of consistency across specific situations that are, believe it or not, different.

In that vein, the reason I called the security phony is because health care is far too nebulous a concept to treat as a coherent human right. But that is why it is so dangerous. By treating health care as a right to be guaranteed by the government, this health care bill makes it the responsibility of the government to interfere in all of those funny little corners of health care, including fitness, diet, alcohol consumption, tobacco use, vision, dental care, hygiene, reproduction, genetic diseases, congenital conditions, and on and on and on. It is impossible to see how government interference in any of those areas will not impede personal freedoms and real human rights, like liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.

I have no doubt, none whatsoever, that the members of congress who voted yes on this this bill (without coercion) believe they are doing the right thing and would be aghast at the idea that their action could have tyrannical effects. They are not tyrants. But that does not matter. Their intentions do not matter. Governmental systems, even democratic ones, have a propensity toward tyranny. If the government owns health care, the system will eventually own us all.

Paul said...

VDH weighs in:


DocCox said...

This is an awesome discussion. It is too bad that it is not widely publicized.
Two questions remain: 1) Who is truly at fault? and 2) What are the chances of overturning this monster?
After reading the posts, it should be abundantly clear that what just occurred was tyranny. Enough ink has been devoted to this argument so I will move on to a discussion of who is at fault. Who is at fault? The answer might surprise you. Sure it would be easy to blame the democratic weasels in Congress but they are just following their and a significant portion of their constituents socialist dreams albeit in a tyrannical fashion. The real culprits are the phony, do-nothing Republicans who, by the way, ARE NOT CONSERVATIVE!
The Republicans had ample time to do the right thing to effect rational change and they did nothing. Anyone with any sense knew that two simple things needed to happen in order to easily and effectively reform healthcare: 1) expand Medicare coverage to a few million more impoverished people and it just so happens 32 million people did not need this help, and 2) reform the legal system to prevent the deluge of malpractice suits which is the true driver of healthcare costs. But the do-nothing Republicans failed to act and allowed this tyrannical moment in history to occur.
Now let us address point two. What are the odds of overturning this monstrosity? Answer: Almost none. Surely the historians on this board understand this. All one has to do is ask a simple series of historical questions to reach this conclusion. First, how often does one party have the 60 votes necessary in the Senate to override a filibuster? How often has the US Supreme Court used judicial review to overturn a piece of legislation? The answer to these two questions alone should be enough to cause a great deal of despair but add to them the fact that Joe six-pack has a very short attention span and is easily confused, and there is every chance that healthcare will not be as big an issue as everyone hopes in the upcoming election.
What can be hoped for? The only thing that can be hoped for is reform of the healthcare bill but even then the Republicans will need a majority in the US House, 60 seats in the US Senate and control of the presidency. The diabolic genius of the healthcare bill is that it is phased in over a long time period. Anyone that can do math can see the damaging results to our economy over the long term and the incentive for employers to bail on providing healthcare.
Allow me to provide an example to elucidate. CBS (of all places) ran a story on a small business owner who had less than 100 employees. When they went through the math of healthcare with him it broke out like this: The employer is currently paying $480,000 to cover his employees. The fine for not covering employees is $750 per employee which, in this case, amounted to $90,000. The estimated increased cost for the employee to be compliant with the current healthcare demands in the bill would push his costs to almost double or around 1 million dollars. What would any rational business owner do? This is why we will all be on government healthcare in the end.
But it will take time. It will be slow and gradual. Even in the 2010 election, Republicans will only be able to rant about future, hypothetical pain and Democrats, if they have any sense, will respond with “What pain?” If the economy is doing even slightly better, the average voter will not find the healthcare arguments very compelling.
By the time the true pain occurs it will be too late. Then once a generation or two lives under this horrendous plan, it will seem normal. Academics will write compelling articles in the future filled with charts and graphs showing how much worse healthcare services have gotten in America since 2010 but no one will be listening anymore.

DocCox said...

Part Deux!
But this is actually to be expected as we are in hegemonic decline. The problem is that the healthcare bill is only the latest in a long line of fiscally irresponsible decisions which extends over multiple presidencies and congresses and encompasses decisions made under both parties' watch. It has led to a situation in which historic national debt levels could lead to U.S. bonds being downgraded from their AAA status. Why does this matter and what does it portend?

The reason it matters is because this has all happened before and each time it has signaled an existential threat to order in the world. This phenomenon portends the end of American primacy in the world.

George Modelski's famous work on long cycles identified long eras of prosperity which lasted roughly seventy to one-hundred plus years in which one hegemonic world leader forced order on the anarchic international system creating an environment for stable economic growth. The United States has been that leader since World War II and the era of prosperity and the expansion of development, especially in Asia and Latin America, is unprecedented in history. The standard of living in America has also been unprecedented in world history. All of this occurred under the hegemonic leadership of the United States which is ironically now derided as meddling and wrong-headed by enemies and allies alike.

But wait, it gets worse. The really bad news is that hegemonic leaders almost always fall under the weight of their own ambitions and ever-increasing leadership demands. Paul Kennedy famously argued in his seminal work The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers that the international security requirements that the world leader amasses eventually leads to imperial overstretch. In the imperial overstretch phase of hegemonic leadership, the hegemonic leader commits an ever increasing amount of its resources attempting to impose order militarily on the world system. Eventually, imperial overstretch becomes so great that the hegemonic leader's domestic economy collapses and that state is no longer able to lead.

The current healthcare bill and the recent overspending over the past decade represent the other side of the overstretch coin which will accelerate American decline. It appears that as the world leader becomes more affluent, domestic demand for social welfare programs increases. Instead of strong, competent leadership from elected officials, we get frightened sycophants willing to pander to voters' social welfare demands no matter how damaging to the U. S. economy. I dub this trend as internal overreach and it is just as damaging as imperial overstretch. When the two occur simultaneously, the result will be catastrophic economic failure.

Worse still, the economic decline of the United States not only allows peer competitors, like China, to catch up, but it also ushers in a period of great instability and great power rivalry which usually results in a world war. The decision to overspend not only damages Americans' standard of living, it actually destabilizes the world as the hegemonic leader increasingly becomes unable to force order on the world system and the anarchic state of nature that the hegemonic leader holds at bay resurfaces.

In the end, I believe that the fiscally conservative viewpoint will come back into vogue in the United States. Unfortunately, I believe that by the time it does it will be too late.

g_rob said...

Re: VDH's article. So, they did it first so it's OK? I don't care who it's coming from. Whether it be Moore or Beck or Limbaugh or Gore, they all suck and they all should be ignored.

Paul said...

Wait a minute...wasn't it Obama who tried to fire up his supporters by stating:
"They bring a knife, we bring a gun"


"Get in their faces"

Oh, and it doesn't look like Obama is ignoring Al Sharpton does it?



There's more, but you get the point.

g_rob said...

Yes, and that statement by Obama sucks. And so does the 'they started it' argument. Furthermore, I think there is a difference in poor word choice in a stump speech and the nightly barrage of doomsday crap that Beck puts forward.

Either way, I think the rhetoric on both sides can tend to be inflammatory and it does nothing for the debate. I despise those who make their living on it like Moore, Beck, Limbaugh, etc.

dcat said...

1) I like how selective you guys are with polls.The polling data on helth care has been twisted in gazillions of different ways, with conservatives offering up the opposition to health care as grand evidence of something without ever taking into account that 15% or so of that opposition came from the left which thought the bill did not go far enough -- and of course since it's passage the bill appears popular, either winning a plurality or else being within the margin of error. People being misinformed about the health care bill and then making decisions on that health care bill has almost nothing to do with the healthcare bill.

But whatever happened to not governing by opinion poll? Because when the Iraq War's unpopularity was well above 60% I do not recall anyone here saying that we must react to public opinion.

I'm not going to be lectured on not having an audience here notr am I going to take anide asides about the tv appearances. My audience here is Paul and DocCox. My being on tv about this issue is irrelevant except inasmuch as it possibly helps my credibility, and though I do not see that to be the case, little cheap shots about the fact that I have been on tv about this issue could bring out the fact that I have been asked about the issue outside of this little Big tent echo chamber. Your talking points condescension is cute. But it's also unearned and frankly irrelevant -- you're the one who asserted that the way the bill was passed was somehow illegitimate. Rioger Ailes could have written that little bit of hooey. If you don't want talking points, maybe start on your own side first.

I'm uncertain how a bill that does not include either a single payer or a public option indicates that the government "owns health care."

But on top of that, you continue asserting tyranny without bothering to show it. There is a plausible path, in your mind, between democratic legislation and tyranny that you never saw under George W. Bush or never bothered to mention. It seems peculiar now that democracy is so inclined toward tyranny, an argument I have literally never heard you make before. But now that we have a Democratic President and Congress, well, the apocalypse is nigh!

As for the historic nature of the lack of GOP support: Why is that a problem of the Democrats and not of the Republicans? Why is it a Democratic problem that their party tried to work with the GOP but the GOP refused to work with them? This bill looks remarkably like the one that Mitt Romney signed into law in Massachusetts, and now he is out pretending it is a step toward socialism. The Democrats made good faith efforts in changing the bill to address GOP concerns. Still no movement by the GOP.

Yeah, there is a problem in American politics, it just ain't a problem with the Democrats. It's a problem with people tossing around terms like "tyranny" and "national socialism."


Hman said...

dcat, you are making the mistake of making this a dem-rep battle. Your bringing up Romney's FAILED Massachusett's plan is a case on point. You do acknowledge that health care in Massachusett's is proving to be failed? Right. . . 42 days to see a doctor. And classifying Romney as a republican is also lacking. You can't win a statewide election in Massachusetts unless you are very left of center. Romney, RINO at best.

And please tell this board how any of the democrats have tried to include republicans in this discussion. The meetings, discussions and debate on HC was limited to democrats and democrats only. Your argument seems to be two wrongs make a right. Can you cite one example of socialized health care being either a fiscally or workable success? Canada? no Britian? no Russia? no. . .Cuba? no This president, Pelosi and Reid didn't believe republican input was required because they had a 50+ majority in the House and a filibuster proof majority in the Senate. Closed door deals with groups representing the doctors, insurance companies and unions were made without any republican participation. Does it not bother you that some groups have been permitted to opt out of this plan? Does it not bother you that no tort reform of any kind is part of this plan? Do you really believe medical malpractice lawsuits are not negatively affecting health care in this country? If you don't, I suggest you ask any OGBYN in this county how secure they think their financial life is.

Bush attempted to reform social security 10 years ago, but the democrats stonewalled any discussion or legislation on this with their pr campaign of "lock boxes" and scare tactics. They used the CBO to manipulate the numbers and push the crisis out into the future. Both parties use the CBO to mask their failures: see sub-prime mortgage reform in the 90s. . .

The only misinformation regarding HC is being perpetrated by Barry, Nancy and Harry. They are pushing a failed product that took bribes, coercion and a propaganda campaign to pass. They denied there were death panels, but there are, they denied premiums would increase, but they will, and they denied medicare would be saved, but it won't. This plan is akin to someone telling you that your 50 customer paper route will fund the payments for a M-class Mercedes. . .

Obama care is socialized medicine. The behavior of congressional leaders and this president are marxian.

Doesn't it scare you that this president has lived such an affluent life without any visible source for this affluence?

Hman said...

Jeff Bloodworth,
You post that social security hasn't "destroyed the republic". Well, for the first decade or so of Madoff's ponzi scheme no one was destroyed either. You don't seem to understand or acknowledge the economic timebombs inherent in these unfunded mandates. Of course, soical security-as it sits TODAY, IS poised to ruin the republic.

Marxist behavior to mandate socialized policies is not what this country was suppose to be about. It boggles my mind that you would argue it is.

jeff bloodworth said...


I couldn't agree more that Michael Moore and Glenn Beck need to go far, far away. It's funny, I can somewhat enjoy Moore's movies (at least the three I have seen) but I always realize he twists facts and gets alot wrong. The political class desparately needs people who disagree vehemently but trust one another's motives. Read more David Brooks, EJ Dionne, David Frum, and Peter Beinart. Liberals aren't communists--social security isn't marxism, and healthcare might be bad policy but its fundamentally democractic.

Hman said...

The tactic of propaganda gurus like alinsky, himmler, moore and the present "mainstream media" is to demonize anyone who is a threat in order to render them powerless. In present day terms this means to define any intellectual threat as crazy before the public has formed any lasting impression. The threat from Gengrich was identified too late to stop the 94 midterms but there was a full court press by the mainstream media to label him a lunatic, wife abuser, bad person the rest of the decade-without ever addressing his arguments on an intellectual basis.

These are the tactics being used against Beck. Can you cite anything he has said on his show, published in a book or said on his radio show that would lead you to advocating his removal from public life? Is he propagating falsehoods? If so, please cite. As opposed to Moores baldfaced lies and falsehoods each of his movies treat as SOP. You laugh at Moore but believe Beck is some sort of threat. He is only a "threat" because his arguments are factual and based in historic truths. You want to give moral equivalence to a proven liar like Moore with Beck whose arguments you can't refute but you disagree with. That is a less than intellectually honest argument, IMO.

Healthcare is not only bad policy (see every other country who has tried anything remotely similar), it was not passed in a manner even remotely "democratic". No where in "democratic" are tools like "bribes" "kickbacks" "payoffs" and/or "exemptions" part of the definition. Trading a congressional vote for a judgeship for your brother is not democratic. . . trading a congressional vote for $300 million in Medicare reductions is not democratic and neither is using the reconsiliation process to pass this health care fiasco.

Social security man not be marxist, but it is broke, and yet all this administration does is push and create additional unfunded mandates. I don't believe that is democratic, either.

Again, doesn't it scare you that this clown says he was an active member of a church for 20 years where the pastor advocated race hatred and the destruction of the jewish state, yet he claims to be unaware of these positions? Either Barry agreed with Wright's positions or he didn't understand them. . . or he didn't listen to them. . . or he was a member in name only and never attended the services. It scares me that Obama actions and words never reach agreement. Social security may not be "marxist", but his president sure is.

jeff bloodworth said...

Hman--whatever or whoever you are. Beck and Moore are equal propagandists. I might argue Moore might be more sophisticated but that could be a product of my ideological leanings. Nevertheless, you aren't a serious a commentator. Anyone who claims Obama is somehow a Marxist is either intentionally lying or stupid.

Hman said...

Bloodworth, I sort of feel sorry for anyone who name calls in place in addressing the debate. You post that Beck and Moore are equal, yet offer nothing to substantiate this. Is this what passes for scholarship these days? Interesting.

How about this:


Hman said...

Bloodworth, FYI. Marxism is in part overcoming private property through gaining political power through social revolution and place the productive capacities of a society into government or collective ownership.

During the past year, the productive capacities of this country have been enveloped by this clown and his lackies in Congress. The financial sector has been engulfed, the auto industry, a through this "global warming" nonsense they are attempting to use the non threatening "cap and trade" legislation to take control of the production capacity of this country. To argue this is not marxist in action is foolhardy and ridiculous.

Obamas life is crowded with self avowed communists like Van Jones, revolutionaries like Bill Ayres and race baiting bigots like the Rev. Wright.

You can diminish yourself and slide into your name calling mode, but it doesn't change the actions, behaviors and past of Barry Obama. . . and is is reasonable to conclude he is a marxist bent on carrying out a marxist agenda. I am sorry your only response to this is to shift into your 5 grade bully mode and resort to name calling, but you are what you do. .. and thats what you are doing.

Again, is that what passes for scholarship these days? Interesting.

Tom said...

I have not called this bill communist, fascist, or national socialist. Indeed, I have called for us not to use those terms.

I did make the case that "both the content of the bill and the manner in which it was passed are strong indicators of a federal government trying to take on oppressive powers." I explained very carefully why in my opinion this bill leads to tyrannical government powers. I also asked for an example of legislation since Reconstruction that was this important being passed along perfectly partisan lines. This is an honest request; I can't think of anything. It seems like an important point for how we deal with minority rights.

In response, I have been accused, again, of hypocrisy. Needless to say, I have not been convinced.

Seriously, is there a response out there beyond "Shh, it's okay, everything will be alright, look at Sweden"?

Paul said...

Believe me, the fear and anger on the right is real and genuine, not funded or astroturfed. Our opposition to this plan is principled and we have laid out our arguments in an articulate fashion here. But liberals refuse to listen to or refute our claims. And when they do, it's "everything will be all right" or "Bush did it."

The problems in the American political system today are the cause of the democrats, not the republicans. What does it say that even with huge majorities in the house and senate, people still had to be bought off and coerced to vote for this bill? The democratic party has moved to the far left of the political spectrum, planted themselves there, pointed to what used to be liberalism and said "there's the new middle" and republicans and some moderate democrats are expected to move left and compromise their principles.

Even if conservatives budged and agreed with the bill in principle (which we don't) the timing of passage is horrendous. We are mired in the third worst economic recession in our history, we are carrying $11T in debt, and SS and Medicare have short fuses. (ooops...violent imagery, hope none of the sensitive liberals takes that as a threat). Passing a new entitlement right now is not only irresponsible, it downright dangerous. This has the potential to push our already precarious economic situation over the brink. (Check our Barone's column regarding the bond market.)

The twin goals of this bill are to redistribute wealth (undo Reagan, they say) and move to a single payer medical care system. The proponent have said these things over and over again. What is it about liberals that prevents them from understanding basic economics? We are moving towards a monopoly market (higher prices, reduced supply) when we should be moving towards a monopolistically competitive market (lower prices, more choices, better products). Do liberals not understand economics or are they in favor of monopoly markets?
...more to come

Paul said...

More problems with the democrats:
The unemployment compensation debate with Bunning and Coburn. How cynical of a game are the democrats playing with this issue? All Bunning and Coburn are asking for is that stimulus money (otherwise known as the democrats' campaign warchest) be released for the funding of unemployment benefits instead of borrowing the money. Or does paygo mean nothing to the democrats? And you don't think the same thing will happen to medical care if it is nationalized??? The same cynical games will be played, but this time critical and preventive care will be a political football subject to politician's games. Shame on the democrats for this behavior!

Now PBS (government network) is getting into the act in support of this bill. They are pushing a series of lesson plans that teachers can use to teach that health care is a basic, fundamental right. Tom already covered this nonsense brilliantly, so I'll leave it alone to move on to other things.

You have to be the biggest dupe of all in this debate. On your site you fell for the democrats' strategy of demonizing the opposition to this bill as racist, bigoted and homophobic. How does it feel to be a useful idiot? What a stooge you are! Pelosi, et. al. walked through that crowd with that enormous gavel purposely in hopes that some slur would be used. When no such thing happened (because the opposition is based in principle, not in bigotry) they MADE UP THE "n-word" accusation, the media ran with it and fools like you believed it. But it's just what liberals do I guess. Same thing happened to you when the Duke lacrosse case took place. You fell for that one hook, line and sinker, too. Mostly because YOU are the one who sees everything through the prism of race. You are the one who needs to step out of the echo chamber. As does every Washington, D.C. politician.

g_rob said...

This is a great debate if it can remain civil.

And if you think both sides are not fear-mongering you are a total f*&%$ng idiot. Oops. Seriously, there's no place for inflammatory comments coming from both parties and their demagogues. Beck, Moore and their ilk are easily ignored but when Palin, a supposedly serious politician jumps into the fray, it's disappointing to say the least because there's a lot of idiots that listen to what she says. http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/03/27/1549689/palin-denounces-violence-but-gun.html

Hman, I will agree that Moore and Beck are different shades of the same color. They both use fear, accusations, doomsday scenarios, and misinformation to rally their patrons. Listen to Beck's piece on churches, social justice and Nazis. He's out of hims mind. He doesn't have a clue about Progressivism, he is extremely selective in his evidence, he uses words like Nazi, Marxist, communist, socialist on a regular basis. I understand his argument, but then again I am educated and I teach history. For those who might not be, his argument paints a picture of a vast conspiracy of socialist churches that are plotting to take over our lives and hand us over to the government.

It is very hard to say that either of these people, Moore or Beck and the others like them, can be taken even remotely seriously.

jeff bloodworth said...

I read this morning that Frum was fired by AEI. I have long admired many of AEI's thinkers--it was a bastion of what was best about neo-conservatism--a disdain for intellectual orthodoxy. Frum disagrees with the Right and he is fired. It reminds me of why the neo-cons left the Dems in the first place.

Sadly yet predictably, conservatives are going down the same path liberals followed in the 70s (I know more than a bit about this--as many Bigtenters realize). This is not to say, conservatives should have backed healthcare--but the enforced orthodoxy is reminiscent of what happened to liberals in the post-60s era. I am not accusing bigtenters of enforcing this orthodoxy but I would urge you to listen to conservative dissenters.

As for Tom's kinda funny point about Sweden--The last thing America needs is Scandanavian style democratic socialism--but Denmark, Norway etc...are free, liberal, and democratic. There is nothing authoritarian about federal healthcare legislation. I suppose, Tom, you and I disagree vehemently yet respectfully. I hope you aren't right.

Paul said...

Dig deeper, jeff. Frum and AEI split because of reasons unrelated to ideology. This was not an ideological purge on the part of AEI.

jeff bloodworth said...

Really, Paul. That is not what Frum or his wife are saying. It is not a conicidence that he is "leaving" at this time. Are you ever critical or do you ever question conservatives? I am not knee-jerk lefty--and you attack me as if I'm Michael Moore. Your America only has room for a very small group of people who believe exactly as Paul does. If you can't have a civil discussion with a moderate liberal--you are really ideological. I am team-teaching a class on totalitarianism with a very conservative colleague who hates the healthcare bill. We respect each other yet disagree. Your anger at anything that remotely critques your worldview is stunning. Your enemy is in Waziristan not Pennsylvania.

Paul said...

What in the wold gives you and Frum the moral high ground in this situation? It's his word vs. AEI's and I happen to believe AEI. Team teach all you want, but don't sit here and play the holier than thou card because of it.

Sienna said...

The problem with this socialized medicine fiasco:

"The Constitution does not authorize the Congress to regulate the state governments," Napolitano says. "Nevertheless, in this piece of legislation, the Congress has told the state governments that they must modify their regulation of certain areas of healthcare, they must surrender their regulation of other areas of healthcare, and they must spend state taxpayer-generated dollars in a way that the Congress wants it done.
Special: Do You Back Obama's Healthcare Plan? Vote Here Now!

"That's called commandeering the legislature," he says. "That's the Congress taking away the discretion of the legislature with respect to regulation, and spending taxpayer dollars. That's prohibited in a couple of Supreme Court cases. So on that argument, the attorneys general have a pretty strong case and I think they will prevail.”

Sad, but true. . .and this marxist clown actually taught "constitutional law? The facade Barry wants the American people to believe is crumbling. . . He is not a MARXIST because I post he is, Barry is a MARXIST because that is how he has lived his live, that is the people he has associated himself with and that is how he has governed for the past 15 months. All of you can get in your Brooks and Dunn ("deny, deny, deny") mode all you want, but he is what he is, and that is a marxist. Quit humiliating yourselves and just acceptit, dealwithit and move on. . . ..