Skip to comments.Learning Four Lessons from Obamacare
Posted on 03/29/2012 8:23:42 PM PDT by jfd1776
Even before the Supreme Court issues its ruling this June, we have learned a great deal from this process. The long history of Obamacare, hopefully already entering its final months, has been as instructive to the student as it has been devastating on the economy. These are certainly not the only lessons we have learned from it, but here are a few worth remembering.
LEGISLATION HAS CONSEQUENCES.
Even though Obamacare was frontloaded on taxes and backloaded on benefits it wouldnt provide a single dollar of real benefits for four years its effect on the economy was instantaneous. Within two months of passage, dozens of public companies had quietly (or sometimes not so quietly) announced that they had to recalculate their future profit margins downward.
AT&T, Verizon, Caterpillar, John Deere, AK Steel, Valero Energy, among others, all announced within a month of the bills passage that it would cost them hundreds of millions, or more. Several of the huge old employers, with equally huge old lists of employees and retirees, announced that it would cost them north of a billion dollars.
This caused an immediate drop in value for these companies. When costs go up without commensurate increases in revenue, the stock value goes down. When profits drop, so must raises, bonuses, dividends, future hiring.
It didnt just affect these companies; it affected everyone: remember that these are public companies, which means that everyone elses investments, 401Ks, retirement plans in general, have suffered as a result. Obamacare cost the economy billions of dollars just in the first month after its passage. Wonder why this alleged recovery has been so tepid? Wonder why so many companies still arent hiring, why unemployment is still so high, why companies are terrified of adding headcount with the risk of massive Obamacare-costs hanging over the head of every newly-created position? Well, heres one reason.
The list of reasons to pass the bill were long and direct, pompously pronounced by politicians with absolute power, as the 2008 elections had delivered House, Senate, and White House alike to the Democrats.
Remember how they said that you could keep your current insurance program if you liked it, no matter what? Well, they lied. They knew full well that their program would drive many insurance companies out of business, and force many more to abandon whole classes of policies, while greatly changing the rest. Thats exactly what happened. Many millions of us who were perfectly happy with what we had have lost it because of Obamacare.
Remember how they said that you could keep your current doctor, if you liked him or her, no matter what? Well, they lied. They knew full well that their program would change the profit models across the medical sector so much, that hundreds or even thousands of medical offices, clinics, even hospitals, would be forced to close, or move, or so change their business that they could no longer accept you as a patient. Look especially at rural areas for evidence of this, as Obamacare makes the presence of healthcare services in sparsely populated regions less and less fiscally viable.
Remember how they said not to worry, Bishop Dolan, they wont force doctors or hospitals to fund abortions? Dont worry, Rep Stupak, they wont force pharmacies to fund abortifacients? Well, the ink was barely dry when this was found in the bill. By late 2011, it was clear that they had intended all along to force doctors, nurses, and pharmacies to do things contrary to their conscience; now that you work for the state, you must transfer your religious observance from God to the almighty bureaucrat. Doctors, nurses, and pharmacists work for Washington now; better face your altar thataway from now on
Democrats in elective office lie. It's how they get elected, and how they pass their bills once they're there. When will the often decent, well-intentioned voters of the Democrat party learn that they are lied to, daily, by their very own party's candidates and officeholders? How gullible can a group be?
DEMOCRATS DON'T BELIEVE IN FREEDOM OF RELIGION.
Yes indeed, religion plays a role here. There is a great deal of morality in the world of healthcare; theres no way around it and it grows every year as technology improves.
Different people have different views on how much should be done to save or prolong life how much should be done to give a chance to a premature infant how much should be done to save a person who has been grievously injured in a car crash or house fire.
There is no clear right-or-wrong answer to these questions. There is no single dividing line, before which you save, beyond which you surrender. And there can never be.
The free market helps, somewhat, as it enables an answer to develop without a single conscious life-or-death choice by a rule or a bureaucrat. The wealthy person might be willing to pour his own funds into a hard case; the more expensive insurance plan has budgeted to do so. The poorer person may accept fate and say a prayer; the more bare-bones insurance plan cannot go too far or it is unfair to its other plan members. Often sad, even tragic, but it works as well as one can hope.
This is not a perfect system, and no one would suggest it is but its far better than a government stepping in and drawing the lines, based on how a distant bureaucrat views such subjective things as qualify of life. When the government has the power, their view of right-and-wrong will rule the day for everyone, whether you agree with their view or not.
If the bureaucrats culture tells him that abortion is a good, that euthanasia is a good, then thats what theyll order subsidized. If the bureaucrats culture tells him that blindness or paraplegia or a hundred other mental or physical disabilities are not worth the taxpayers precious dollars, watch that viewpoint color his choices in which operations to authorize, and in which ones to deny.
There is no perfect solution, but with healthcare in private hands, the freedom to make our private choices in these matters, hard as they sometimes are, is respected. With healthcare in the governments hands, that freedom is removed. And all choices will be made in accordance with the states religion a religion that currently values contraception, sterilization, and abortion very highly how far off is it until we add transgender surgery, plastic surgery, and euthanasia to that list, while denying funds to a hundred other cases in the process?
LEGISLATORS AND PRESIDENTS SWEAR AN OATH, TOO.
Ever since the Marshall Court established the concept of judicial review two centuries ago, American politicians (and press, and pundits, and students ) have shared a belief that the Supreme Court is the defender of the Constitution, that the Supreme Court is the last bulwark against unconstitutional law.
For this reason, many in politics have taken a casual nature about the Constitutionality of the bills they consider. Dont worry, if its unconstitutional, SCOTUS can strike it down; no harm, no foul! How wrong they are.
The best recent example is the famous McCain-Feingold campaign finance legislation of the late 1990s. Blatantly unconstitutional, but terribly popular from a populist perspective Lets get the Money out of Politics! Yeah!!! too many in government decided they couldnt take the heat of opposing it, so the House passed it then the Senate passed it then the President signed it all on the assumption that it would be thrown out or at least, the unconstitutional parts would be thrown out by the Supreme Court. Well, it finally made it to the Supreme Court, and most of it stood. Maybe its the fault of those who brought the case; maybe its the fault of the court at the time; whatever the reason, all these people who passed the buck found out the hard way that they shouldnt have done so.
The same thing applies here in the Obamacare debate. Maybe the Supreme Court will strike it down completely, maybe just partially, maybe not at all. But in the meantime, our economy has been devastated for over two years by this monstrosity, and the devastation continues. Counting on someone else to make it right down the road is no help to all the injured parties along the way.
The fact is, every Congressman and every President takes an oath of office to honor and obey the Constitution. None of them ever have a right to disobey the Constitution, not in writing a bill, not in sponsoring a bill, not in voting it out of committee or giving it cloture, not in signing the darned thing once others have passed it!
The Framers did not expect everyone in government to be perfect. As Publius said, if men were angels, there would be no need for government at all. Why then have we accepted that Congress and the President are not angels, but become dependent upon the nine members of the Supreme Court wearing those heavenly wings?
It is time to hold all elective officials responsible for the Constitutionality of their actions. No more passing the buck. No more voting for a bad bill just to make some constituent group happy. No more wimping out from the right arguments and counting on your neighbors in the black robes to get you out of the mess.
Every politician must obey the Constitution. And when they dont, we must throw them out.
For in the end, this is the lesson of the Obamacare experience: If you allow the existence of circumstances that would allow an economically, morally, and politically devastating bill to become law, then it most certainly will. We must not only overturn this law Repeal and Replace, as the saying goes we must also overturn the unconstitutional anti-constitutional, in fact criminals in Washington who made it possible. We must hold every candidate to his oath, and show him the door, either by ballot box or impeachment, anytime he breaks it.
If we havent learned this much from the Obamacare experience, then we are indeed unteachable, and the Framers were wrong to have such confidence in their descendents.
Copyright 2012 John F. Di Leo
John F. Di Leo is a Chicago-based Customs broker and international trade lecturer. His columns regularly appear in Illinois Review.
Permission is hereby granted to forward freely, provided it is uncut and the byline and IR URL are included. Follow me on LinkedIn or Facebook!
Dictator Baby-Doc Barack has ALWAYS ignored The US Constitution, ESPECIALLY with Obamacare.
The cancer of Obamacare now has invaded World Finances as Obama last week choose a Public health expert for the World Bank Presidency.
Romney has promised to Repeal and REPLACE Obamacare.
Senator (R Tn) Son-of-a-Mitch McConnell has promised to Repeal and REPLACE Obamacare.
According to Michelle Bachmann (R Min), there are currently over 10, 000 REGULATIONS attached to Obamacare.
The major problem with THE NINE SUPREMES is that they are chosen for political reasons by the POTUS, and then they vote as an un-accountable democracy, for a Nation that is NOT a Democracy, but a REPUBLIC.
As a result, THE NINE SUPREMES commonly vote 5 to 4 on most issues. Constitutionality is seldom a consideration, and their up-coming ruling on Obamacare will prove my point.
Now is the time to stand and deliver to address our grievances to the dictates of the Left.
Oppose the dictates of Dictator Baby-Doc Barack!
Our ONLY chance to ABOLISH Obamacare rests with THE NINE SUPREMES, because Romney will be defeated by Obama.
IMHO, if Romney is anointed as the RNC Nominee, THE main issue in the National Election, Obamacare, will be taken off the campaign table. Hence, Romney will not only lose, but suffer another crushing, and sadly typical, RINO defeat.
To those who want poster ideas, here are a few ideas for demonstration posters:
Obamacare was robo-signed by Congress, and is therefore illegal.
Obamacare was 2409 pages long, and is still being written, but not by Congress: witness the forced contraception coverage recently added by HHS Regulators.
Obamacare has caused The Catholic Spring.
Obamacare reduces competition, and therefore is illegal by the 1890 Sherman Anti-Trust Law.
Obamacare is designed to be a US Federal Government monopoly, with no competition.
Obamacare also is illegal according to the US Constitution, because it violates our freedom of choice.
Will THE NINE SUPREMES notice any of these three violations? I seriously doubt it.
BTW, impeached Bill Clinton proved that the US President is above US Federal Law, so anything that the President wants he gets, regardless of the Federal Laws that he has violated.
Obamacare will allow women (and girls) to snuff out their own babies without economic consequence.
If the Supreme Court dumps Obamacare, then the Republicans must be ready to dump Obamacare also.
To Replace or modify Obamacare would result in The Republican Party ceasing to represent the 66 % of Americans that for years have opposed Obamacare.
The overwhelming endorsements by the RNC-E of Romney, the Godfather of Obamacare, is a very convincing indication that the RNC will betray the voters and Replace Obamacare.
Replace Obamacare and the voters will replace the Republican Party.
The era of the Big Tent will be over.
Not sure what you mean, Graewoulf...
We definitely need to “repeal and replace” obamacare.
After it is eliminated, healthcare funding in America will still have numerous challenges to address; we’ll just have lost four years while nationalization dominated the headlines.
Once obamacare is killed, we’ll have to tackle what we needed all along - Medicare reform, tort reform, relaxation of the many cost-crippling insurance mandates, opening up the tax benefit to people who buy insurance directly rather than just limiting it to those who get it as a part of their salary+benefits, etc. etc.
All easily manageable without an obamacare bill. We must never do anything like that monstrosity again...
But we do still need to address these healthcare issues. We just need to address them right, from the free market perspective.
A good step in the right direction would be nominating and electing Rick Santorum, who’s been a backer of health savings accounts as a free market alternative for 20 years.
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Well that’s exciting - I replied to the wrong post! Sorry folks! Ducking my head in shame! :)
” - - - Not sure what you mean, Graewoulf... “
Your is a very detailed defense of the RINO position of replacing something that is a blue cancer to the US Federal Government with something that is a red cancer to the US Federal Government.
This “Repeal and Replace” cr_p is merely the children’s game of “My game is better than your game.”
England went through the same sea-saw BS of Nationalizing and later Privatizing industries after WW Twice, as the Labor and Torries changed power.
Socialized Medicine is the multi-colored cancer, be it Obama”care,” Romney”Care,” Medicaid, Medicare, etc.
End Socialized medicine in 4 years, or bankrupt America.
It is all about the money - - - .
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