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Liberalsí Hobby Lobby Doublethink: If birth control is not your boss's business, why make him pay?
National Review ^ | 07/01/2014 | Jonah Goldberg

Posted on 07/02/2014 7:42:37 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Abortion-rights protesters gathered outside the Supreme Court building on Monday holding signs that read “Birth Control: Not My Boss’s Business.”

Much to their chagrin, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito agreed in his ruling in the Hobby Lobby case.

Of course, that’s not how supporters of the government’s contraception mandate see it. They actually believe that birth control is their boss’s business, and they want the federal government to force employers to agree.

More on that later, but it’s first worth noting how we got here.

First, contrary to a lot of lazy punditry, there is no Obamacare contraception mandate. As my National Review colleague Ramesh Ponnuru notes, even President Obama’s liberal rubber-stamp Congress of 2009–10 never addressed — or even debated — the question of whether companies can be forced to provide contraceptive coverage. Department of Health and Human Services bureaucrats simply asserted that they could impose such a requirement. Indeed, “several pro-life Democrats,” Ponnuru adds, “who provided the law’s narrow margin of victory in the House have said they would have voted against the law had it included the mandate.”

Moreover, Hobby Lobby never objected to covering birth control per se. It already covers 16 kinds of birth control for its employees. But it objected to paying for what it considers to be abortifacients, which don’t prevent a pregnancy but terminate one. The pro-abortion-rights lobby can argue that “abortion” and “birth control” are synonymous terms, but that doesn’t make it true.

One lesson here is that overreaching can have unintended consequences. We saw that last week when the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the White House had overplayed its hand when it comes to the president’s ability to make recess appointments. By abusing a presidential prerogative, Obama invited the court to address the issue. As a result, presidential power — at least in this regard — is now more curtailed.

Similarly, the Hobby Lobby decision opens the door for closely held companies to deny coverage of all forms of birth control if they can plausibly argue that doing so would violate their conscience. The decision doesn’t apply to large, publicly held corporations, but even if it did, it is unlikely that many companies would go down that path. And even if they did, birth control would not be “banned” – employees simply would have to pay for it themselves. The notion that denying a subsidy for a product is equivalent to banning that product is one of the odder tenets of contemporary liberalism.

This gets us to why I think the ruling’s majority essentially agreed with the protesters. If I like to dress up as a character from Game of Thrones on weekends, pretending to fight snow zombies and treating my mutt like she’s a mystical direwolf, that’s none of my employer’s business. But if I ask my employer to pay for my trip to a Game of Thrones fan convention, I am asking him to make it his business. If my employer refuses, that may or may not be unfair, but it’s his right. If, in response, I go to the convention and have the government force my employer to pay for my travel, that only makes things worse. It not only makes my private pursuits my boss’s business, it makes them the business of taxpayers and a bunch of bureaucrats in Washington.

At the heart of this, and so many other recent controversies, is an honest disagreement about how society should be organized. For liberals (and far too many Republicans), businesses should be de facto, if not de jure, extensions of government. If something is desirable, businesses should be forced to impose it. The fact that the owner disagrees or that it is not in the business’s economic interest is immaterial. And it’s not just businesses. Recall that the Obama administration has tried to force explicitly religious groups to betray their beliefs as well.

Obviously, there’s room for nuance here. Few people think that we should scrap minimal workplace-safety rules, for instance. No one thinks the Church of Satan should be permitted ritual human sacrifice. But when in doubt, the government should err on the side of laissez faire et laissez passer, le monde va de lui-même.

Not everything is your boss’s business, or anybody else’s.

— Jonah Goldberg is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and editor-at-large of National Review Online.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: contraceptives; hobbylobby; mandate

1 posted on 07/02/2014 7:42:37 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

The left doesn’t care about this aspect of so-called healthcare than any other. It is only because they seek to demoralize, defund, cripple and crush the ideals of feeling, thinking Americans who haven’t bought into humanism, secularism and the evils of the socialist construct. They do this because they have nothing in their lives in which to believe except government that oppresses.


2 posted on 07/02/2014 7:45:53 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: SeekAndFind
If birth control is not your boss's business, why make him pay?

If one's homosexual practices are not our business, why make us legitimize them with 'marriage'?

3 posted on 07/02/2014 7:46:24 AM PDT by ConservingFreedom (A goverrnment strong enough to impose your standards is strong enough to ban them.)
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To: SeekAndFind
Liberals’ Hobby Lobby Doublethink: If birth control is not your boss's business, why make him pay?

Logic like this will cause liberal heads to...


4 posted on 07/02/2014 7:48:14 AM PDT by Responsibility2nd (NO LIBS. This Means Liberals and (L)libertarians! Same Thing. NO LIBS!!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Where’s the outrage over the government’s limiting the mandated choices to 20.


5 posted on 07/02/2014 7:50:30 AM PDT by black_diamond
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To: SeekAndFind

I’m pleased with the incredible intensity of the internal consternation of the left on this. = head explosions.


6 posted on 07/02/2014 7:51:03 AM PDT by Attention Surplus Disorder (At no time was the Obama administration aware of what the Obama administration was doing)
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To: SeekAndFind

as Rush Limbaugh once told Sandra Fluke, if we taxpayers have to pay, can we watch?

ooops, look at the trouble THAT caused!


7 posted on 07/02/2014 7:56:27 AM PDT by silverleaf (Age takes a toll: Please have exact change)
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To: SeekAndFind

This is the moment to make these points...the fallacies of Obamacare...argue the original points. The rube goldberg government solution makes no sense. Why is government removing choices from the consumer in the first place...let’s give individuals THEIR choice...not someone in DC.


8 posted on 07/02/2014 7:59:31 AM PDT by ilgipper
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To: SeekAndFind


9 posted on 07/02/2014 8:00:57 AM PDT by Iron Munro (The Obamas Black skin has morphed into Teflon thanks to the Obama Media)
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To: SeekAndFind

Wish my boss would pay for my cigarettes... Smoking is like having sex...it’s a choice.


10 posted on 07/02/2014 8:03:40 AM PDT by Dallas59
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To: SeekAndFind
“Birth Control: Not My Boss’s Business.”

Well, his wallet isn't your business, bitches.

11 posted on 07/02/2014 8:14:47 AM PDT by ScottinVA (If it doesn't include border security, it isn't "reform." It's called "amnesty.")
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To: SeekAndFind
that is exactly what i said to my niece on her FB wall... "you don't want your CEO in your business... but the moment he begins to pay for your sexual freedom is the moment you invite him into your bedroom... so which is it?" she took down her FB post... :)

i was dismayed because i wanted to continue discussing this with her and her friends... btw, not all of her friends agreed with her...

12 posted on 07/02/2014 8:23:48 AM PDT by latina4dubya (when i have money i buy books... if i have anything left, i buy 6-inch heels and a bottle of wine...)
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To: SeekAndFind

Jonah G. sums it up in one trenchant question.


13 posted on 07/02/2014 8:23:56 AM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("I set before you this day Life and Death, a Blessing and a Curse.")
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To: SeekAndFind

Liberals generally don’t think much.


14 posted on 07/02/2014 8:25:03 AM PDT by uncitizen (Buckle up! We're on the Facism Fast Track!)
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To: SeekAndFind

The Hobby Lobby decision wasn’t about birth control, it was about abortion pills.


15 posted on 07/02/2014 8:30:50 AM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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