'A Crushing Blow to Freedom'

Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) with one of the more ridiculous reactions to the Supreme Court ruling yesterday:

"This is a crushing blow to freedom and an absolute insult to the dignity of all Americans. I am deeply disappointed in the Supreme Court for giving the government the authority to force citizens to buy a product. I believe this encroachment of government is unconstitutional and offensive. It puts the life and death health decisions of our families and loved ones in the hands of Washington Bureaucrats. We don't want the compassion of the IRS or the efficiency of the DMV in our healthcare system… Now we must work tirelessly to continue defunding and destroying the monster that is Obamacare."

Okay, I choose to not buy ICBMs and white phosphorous bombs (products manufactured by private companies), oil companies (a product subsidized with our tax dollars), and, for that matter, anything that happens in Missouri, including Todd Akin's salary and healthcare benefits. Because my tax money is being used to buy things from private companies and profiteers every damn day -- things that Republicans heartily approve of. But affordable health insurance is a step too far for these wackaloons. Okay. Maybe they should talk with Newt Gingrich, Bob Dole, Mitt Romney, Bob Bennett and Chuck Grassley -- the Republicans who invented the mandate.

  • Lazarus Durden

    To all GOP lawmakers gnashing their teeth I have something that sums up your current options.

  • joseph2004

    If you think about it, Democrats ought to feel just a little uncomfortable with the way this law was upheld. It’s a little – no, a lot – like the baseball pitcher who’s on his way to a no-hitter. The last batter up hits a grounder to third. It’s a long throw to first but the runner is called out. Only problem is, everybody on that side of the field, and anyone who sees the instant replay, knows that the runner beat the throw, no question about. Hell, even the pitcher knows the runner was safe. But, the call stands. The pitcher gets a W and a no-hitter by his name – along with a big fat asterisk.

    A lot of silly scenarios of how congress will act with its new found powers are tossed around and dismissed for being, well, silly, but that doesn’t make the law that inspires them any less onerous. I don’t know what Roberts was thinking, but when you give the federal government the power to impose a tax on someone for not buying something, the sky really is the limit. It’s not just something to joke about or assume no one will go too far. That goes for Democrats and Republicans.
    Now, Americans are smart enough to reject the truly ridiculous from our vaunted officials.
    Or are they? This site takes no small pleasure highlighting all the truly ridiculous things people say and do all the time. Granted here the focus is almost exclusively on Republicans, but head over to Michelle Malkin or Mark Steyn or any number of others on the right, and you’ll see the same shit regarding Democrats.

    Be careful what you wish for. There’s much more to this ruling than merely getting healthcare to more people. Don’t assume the government’s apparent new powers to tax in order to shape public behavior will go unnoticed, especially among the truly silly.

    • Lazarus Durden

      Man all of that for a slippery slope fallacy, and finishing it off with a false equivalence. Thanks doomsayer. I should probably stock up on guns and ammo now that the big bad government can tax me. GASP! Say it ain’t so! Lament! Call no one happy who is not already dead!

      • joseph2004

        Let me put it this way then:

        George Santayana :

        “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

        History is repleat with examples of “Give them and inch, they’ll take a mile.”

        When was your lobotomy?

        • Lazarus Durden

          Oh you’ve stepped into my world now. You should’ve checked the tag after my name.

          Awesome. You quoted Santanyana. Bully for you! Do you even know what that means, or is in reference to? You just decided to throw it out there as a quip without any context or tether to any sort of reasoned argument.

          Give me an example of one of these repleat examples. Are you talking about Hitler? Or Stalin perhaps? How about King Phillip of Spain? Anyone in particular? Are you going to talk about them in their historical context or just rip them from that to uphold your present day argument. I’d so love for you to tell me what the Founding Fathers would’ve thought. That’s always a great one since no one has any idea what they would’ve thought about any of our problems today.

          Please tell me how the government being able to levy a fine or taxation leads to tyranny. Are you an Anarchist? Is all government bad all the time?

          This is the problem with the slippery slope fallacy. I can come up with all sorts of scenarios that sound reasonable on their face, but really they are just nonsense at their core. The Individual Mandate is not the opening for the death of liberty. It’s not the Rubicon to the Republic. You have no idea how the future is going to unfold, nor is history a good barometer to judge it unless you’re a Stoic or a Nietzsche and you buy into External Recurrence. But even if you did you wouldn’t know what’s coming up any way even though you’ve lived through it before.

          If History could tell us the future historians would be employed as prophets for every major corporation and government institution in the world. History can only be practiced in it’s time and place, in it’s historical context, and only then can very general, qualified speculation be made about our present situation. It gets even more speculative in regards to the future.

          Is the Individual Mandate the end of liberty? Doubtful. Maybe, but doubtful. I have no idea. Neither do you. But my guess is no. It’s just the beginning of the end of unregulated pure capitalism in America. It is the changing of our economic super structure which is long overdue, or has been going on since FDR depending on your historical perspective.

          So apparently my lobotomy is working out fine, however your argument needs a lot of work. Perhaps you’d like to take a glance at a logic book and learn what a fallacy is before you run your mouth.

    • nicole

      Oh shut up, joseph. You sound utterly unhinged and ridiculous.

      • joseph2004

        That’s the nicest thing you’ve said to me in – well, since forever.

        This is your day. Enjoy it.

    • mrbrink

      First of all, there’s no asterisk in your no-hitter scenario for a blown call. It’s a no hitter in the record book.

      Secondly, the power to tax is not a new power. It’s called Article 1 Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution.

      In the history of America, we have taxed and mandated and regulated all sorts of things on individuals and corporations. In 1790, from the very first congress passing a law requiring ship owners buy medical insurance for their seamen to the Musket mandate of 1792 to Social Security and Medicare.

      What YOU should be worried about is the faulty logic of right wing ideologues sitting on the Supreme Court who keep offering up counter-factual arguments and childish interpretation of written law and the Constitution.

      Eat your broccoli, fuckers.

      • joseph2004

        The point is, the court has affirmed that the Government can tax an individual for anything, even for doing absolutely nothing. It’s one thing to provide a tax credit to incentivize someone to eat brocoli (or buy health care). They benefit if they do, but aren’t harmed (financially) if they don’t. It’s quite another to penalize them for not eating brocoli by taxing their income. After all brocoli is healthy and if everyone were made to eat it on a regular basis (with a few wavers tossed in), just think how much healthier everyone would be – and how much healthcare money would be saved long-term with so many more healthy people. Can’t prove you ate brocoli this last tax year – no receipts? – then sorry, we’re going to tax you $100 – you know, to be used for “the common defense and general Welfare.” Of course, since more people will be eating brocoli now – a whole lot of people (well, at least buying it, not necessarily eating it (their loss)), the price of brocoli will go up, not down, for everybody. Basic supply and demand. Hmmm.

        I understand the elation Obamacare supporters are feeling right now. That’s all fine. It’s been a battle and “they” won. But I’m always taken aback by how sanguine liberals are about expanding government power.

        You got what you wanted. Now we have to live with it.

        • mrbrink

          For profit health insurance is an area where the federal government allowed despicable practices to go on for many years until Barack Obama came along.

          What the Supreme Court actually affirmed was that Medicare for all would be constitutional.

        • Lazarus Durden

          Another horrible fallacious argument. The government already penalizes you for not behaving in certain ways. Get in a accident and you don’t have insurance you pay a fine. Not wearing your seat belt. Fine. Not wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle. Fine. Jaywalking. Fine. Loitering. Pay a fine. Building without a permit in city limits. Fine. Not building up to code. Fine and forced to make changes. They even put an excise tax on cigarettes.

          You’re acting like we lived in some libertarian paradise and with one stroke of pen BAM! we’re under a dictatorship. The broccoli argument? Really?

          Do you honestly think the government will set up an agency to monitor vegetable consumption on an individual basis? Really?

    • mrbrink

      On September 2, 1972, Milt Pappas was pitching for the Cubs and was one out away from a perfect game. Bruce Froemming, the home plate umpire, called two straight balls after a 2-2 count, costing Pappas a perfect game. Froemming, who walked off the field smirking and laughing and talking shit back to a rightfully furious Pappas, didn’t blow the call, he was just a fucking asshole with the authority to call balls and strikes.

    • Victor_the_Crab

      Pssst… You’re a douchebag.

      Have a nice day.

  • Dan Rawsthorne

    Hooray! Roberts’ Court upholds “Freeloaders Tax”!! Now let’s take a look at what calling a tax a tax does to Romney’s time as Governor…

  • mrbrink

    Well, it was a sad day for the freedom to die in America without health insurance.

    Right wing conservatives everywhere are in mourning for the lost individual freedom of health insurance corporations and Medicare scammers who lost their God-given corporate rights to rob the government and discriminate against the sick and the poor.

    I’m sure that after a good long group cry and some gentle Meat Loaf man-hugging through the varying stages of grief this will all blow over with some time and sober reflection. Like, President Obama’s birth certificate. The New Deal. The Civil Rights Act. Roe v. Wade. The Confederacy. Modern science. The Dixie Chicks.

  • bphoon

    “This is a crushing blow to freedom and an absolute insult to the dignity of all Americans.”

    And Citizen’s United, which is facilitating the wholesale corruption of our entire political system/government isn’t?

    Funny isn’t it (not) how whatever they’re against (even if they were for it before they were against it) is a “crushing blow to freedom” and “tyranny” while whatever they’re for is something that “insures the freedom of all Americans” and is “supported by the overwhelming majority of the American People”?

    The hyperbole would be comic if I didn’t think so many of our erstwhile fellow citizens agreed with it…

  • trgahan

    funny how the party of The Patriot Act, anti-aboration law, anti-Shari laws, anti-immigration laws, voter ID laws, anti-disclosure laws, anti-lawsuit laws, anti-bankruptcy laws, anti-investigative reporting of factory farms laws, etc, etc can claim the ruling of our Supreme Court that a law designed to provide citizens with cheap, boarder healthcare is a “crushing blow to freedom.”

    Scaried still is not that this guy said that millions of Americans say “Hell Yeah!” in response.

  • Zirgar

    Breaking: Right wingers are against mandates, believe it will lead to manmarriages.

  • Zirgar

    Keep the DMV out of my vagina!

    • Lazarus Durden

      *gets ready to make a crack about zoning for the vagina DMV. Is restrained by more mature half of his brain.*

  • Miranda

    Ya know with all of their fantasies of being shackled and oppressed, you’d think they’d love msnbc – at least on the weekend with all those prison shows.

    • muselet

      The Republican waited. He hated it, but he had learned to be patient, to ignore the pressure of the ropes encircling his forearms and the trickle of sweat that always got in his eyes under his gimp mask …


      • Lazarus Durden

        You know you just made some GOP blood pressure rise with that post. A lot of them are into the Scene.

  • Draxiar

    I wonder if they mind being mandated to sign up for Selective Service?

    And really, the uninsured aren’t being mandated to buy a “product” insomuch as they are being mandated to buy a “service”.

  • zirgar

    Republicans: “That cannot be called freedom which does not allow us to fuck over as many people as possible for our own benefit.”

    • nicole

      We have a winner!

      Speaking of ridiculous reactions to the health care decision, wingnut Vanderboegh advocates an armed insurrection.

      I wish they’d get their own country to fuck up.

      • Bob Rutledge

        They’re trying really fucking hard.

        See: repressive voter laws, enshrined fear of The Other, anti-science legislation, and on and on and on.

        • nicole

          Yeah, Bob, but it’s still our country they’re fucking up. I would not be completely adverse to another civil war. I positively loathe these people, and I don’t think anything else will do.