Category Archives: Healthcare

Honk If You’re Over-Employed!

We live in an absurd world. You may be aware of a recent report-not, let’s keep in mind, from some right wing think tank, but from the Keynesians at the Congressional Budget Office-that Obamacare will lead to a very large increase in the number of people working part time instead of full time, and the CBO officials even seemed to have opened up introductory texts on actual economics saying the law creates “a disincentive to work.” In English for those of you playing at home: it destroys jobs.

Now, despite the fact that this is a government report, the government isn’t gonna take an insult to itself, from itself, lying down. The Obama administration has given the excuse that this is not due to anyone actually involuntarily losing their job, it’s due to people choosing not to work, because they never really wanted to have a job, they just had to to get health insurance.

Follow that? Millions of people won’t be working anymore, but it’s okay, they didn’t want to be working. They were over-employed because they really only wanted health insurance, not a job. In fact, the assertion amounts to a statement that the American people suffer from a chronic over employment problem.

Huh? That’s self-evidently nonsense. Of the entire population of the US, about 43% of people are employed. Of those between the ages of 15 to 64 a little less than 68% of people are employed. And keep in mind, those are people employed at all-the percentage of people with full time jobs is more like 34% and 54%, respectively. I don’t see how anyone could come to the conclusion, looking at those numbers, that too many people have to work too much.

But the assertion is, at any rate, based on the presumption (perhaps shared by the CBO) that Obamacare actually alleviates anyone’s health insurance woes. And, in alleviating these woes, it allows people to make the choices they would “naturally” chose to make, if only it weren’t for having to worry about health insurance. One might well make the argument that people could “naturally” chose not to work, if only they didn’t have to worry about eating. But there is nothing “natural” about the decisions one can make when one is able to use someone else’s income to purchase one’s health insurance-as is the case with subsidized insurance bought with the help of the government. It’s the “natural” choices the slave master can make with the fruit’s of his slave’s labor, or the “natural” choices a thief may make with his ill begotten loot. Of course, people receiving such things from the criminal gang that is the government are not themselves criminals or slave masters-that is the government. They are no more guilty of the crime itself than the thief or the slave master’s children, whom they feed with their ill gotten gains. But it is absurd and perverse in the extreme to suggest nothing untoward is going on, simply because people are responding to incentives. One might as well conclude nothing untoward is ever going on in the economy-people always respond to incentives. This doesn’t mean that incentives can’t be bad.

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Filed under Common Sense, Dumbasses, Economics, Freedom, Healthcare

Right AND Wrong

Much has been made of the alleged “apostasy” of the Romney campaign from the talking points among Republicans, whose campaign strategy to turn the disastrous and wrong Supreme Court decision into a big get out the vote drive was t0 jump on the Court declaring the mandate a tax. What can I say? For once, I agree with Mitt Romney. It shouldn’t have been declared a tax, any proper analysis of the law would have struck it down as an unconstitutional penalty; the fact of the matter is, however, that even when the Supreme Court is wrong, the government is bound to it’s interpretation of the law. So the way I look at it, Obamacare went into the Court an unconstitutional penalty, and left, along with the shredded remains of the Constitution, as a “constitutional” tax, as rewritten by our nation’s latest greatest legislator, John  Roberts.

So why doesn’t any of the media including Fox or WSJ, ask Obama why, if he really believes he didn’t sign a middle class tax hike into law, he doesn’t ask John Roberts to reconsider and declare his law unconstitutional? Why is it that the Obama administration is being allowed to get away with trying to have it both ways and the Republicans are being given a hard time? Even if we go with the media narrative, the we are left to conclude that Romney is an independent thinker who doesn’t just say what other Republicans tell him to, but the Democrats are much smarter because they are all on the same page with different Democrats, but each individual Democrat is not on the same page with him or herself! Baffling!

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Filed under Courts and Law, Dumbasses, Election 2012, Healthcare, Liberals, Republicans

Madison in Tatters

The Supreme Court has, as I am sure many of you are aware, narrowly upheld Obamacare against constitutional challenge. Many say that this isn’t too big a deal, if we just elect Republicans to the Presidency and Senate, and hold the House, we can repeal it and it does not matter what the Court said because Congress has the power to undo what it has the power to do. This is incredibly shortsighted and fails to grasp that what the Court has done, in effect, is fundamentally alter the nature of the American government. Not merely this decision, but the recent decision to tell the States they cannot decide for themselves how to sentence juvenile murderers, and the decision to tell the States that they cannot maintain their sovereign status even if fully compliant with federal law. Moreover, the Court has just engaged in a clear case of violating the separation of powers among the co-equal branches of the federal government. Has there ever been a more clear case of legislating from the bench? I doubt it. Even the majority opinion concedes their reading of the individual mandate as a tax is not “straightforward” nor is it the most “natural” reading, but on the basis of “precedent” points out it doesn’t have to be an easy reading-if they can go out of their way to save a poorly written law, precedent says they should. The dissenting opinion rightly sees this as quite the stretch, as not only did the government, but also the majority, agree that it was not a tax “for purposes of” the Anti-Injunction Act (that is, the ruled it not a tax for the issue of legal standing) the law is clearly written so that this alleged “tax” is a penalty, a distinction that makes the whole difference as to whether the mandate passes muster. The issue is clearly expounded upon by the dissent. The majority’s opinion is baffling, beyond being wrong.

Truly this is the death Madison’s Federalist vision. Every element of restraint on the government’s power is now gone. The government may now undertake to compel any action of Americans under the power to tax-not merely health insurance, but to use an example given by majority opinion author Roberts, a mandate to purchase energy efficient windows, could be enforced by a “tax.” What the government cannot compel of people is unclear because frankly, it really has no limits any longer. Under penalty of “taxation” under penalty of criminal prosecution, anything may now be required of Americans by their own government. None of this is likely to ever be undone. Congresses will come and go, but in the modern era, Supreme Court cases are essentially forever.

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Filed under Courts and Law, Freedom, Healthcare, Liberals

Finally the Semester is Over

Well, I haven’t posted in quite some time. The semester at FAU was brutal, the work load near overwhelming. Well, it’s over now, and I’m off this summer! So I should be able to post more often again. And what do I have to say today? Hm, well, I guess I’ll start with the big news. Congratulations to the US military for finally getting Bin Laden! The American people are quite proud of you guys! Politically speaking, I have to say that I have no strong urge to politicize this achievement, but I think that it’s too late for that from what I have seen. On the one hand, the Administration has enthusiastically seized on this as proof of their national security policy’s superiority, and on the other hand we have those who would like to see credit given where it is due, that being to the previous Administration. The details of this story clearly are supporting the idea that the only “credit” Obama deserves is for making sure that we would have proof (which will be unavailable to world, totally defeating the purpose…) that we actually got Bin Laden. The success of this operation lies with the policies in place when we started into it, years ago under Bush. The intelligence that led to finding Bin Laden came from policies the current President opposed while he was running, some of which he nevertheless continued, but others he has at least tried to eliminate. So it is ridiculous to suggest this somehow vindicates Obama. On the contrary, it is Bush who is vindicated by this.

And now to talk about the other thing on my mind: The coming GOP primary race. Oh boy. What is there to say? I don’t see much promise out of the crowd out there. I think we’ve all had a good laugh at the idea of Donald Trump actually running, but fun’s over guys, we need people who have guts and brains, and Trump’s brain is only (sometimes) good for business, and nothing else. His entire platform consists of taxing Chinese imports. That’s horrifyingly idiotic. I wish more people would be willing to take on the president as boldly as he is (though preferably on matters more substantial than birther conspiracies) but have better ideas (and really almost all of them have better ideas). Is there anyone runner or possibly running that might be a good candidate? Um…hard to say, everybody has problems. I really don’t want anyone who already ran last time, so with that and the fact that Romney has the gall to refuse to disown his Massachusetts Healthcare program, I think he is definitely NOT a good pick. I’m surprised, honestly, that Newt Gingrich is really running, as I was fairly sure he would not. His support for ethanol subsidies, which WSJ has been pointing out fairly regularly, is deeply troubling, but this issue seems to be impossible to get around successfully. The last time we actually managed to nominate someone who opposed those subsidies, well, that was McCain…Mitch Daniels biggest obstacle may be is wife, but I haven’t got much else to say about him, I guess. Tim Pawlenty could stand to be a little bolder in criticizing potential rivals if you ask me. Here’s some probable good news. I like Herman Cain, but getting recognized will be a big obstacle for him (I disagree with the idea that lack of political experience will be a problem, considering that people presently have no love for the political class). If I’m forgetting anyone major I apologize. This whole pool of candidates is putting me to sleep, it’s so boring right now.  But I think anybody should be able to win in the election.

Um, I guess I haven’t got much else to say right now. See ya!

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Filed under Announcements, Defense, Election 2012, General, Healthcare, personal, Republicans

Democrat Gatekeeping

It’s not just for environmental science anymore-in case you hadn’t noticed Dems have a new tactic in the Health care debate-they are acting as the gate keepers. And it’s not to hard either. Republicans aren’t in a position to do any legislating, so it is very easy to paint them as opposed to any change from the Health care status quo-Republican leaders seem to have dropped off the face of the Earth in this debate. I’ve said before that there are problems with the present system (problems chiefly created by liberals) which can be fixed-but not the Obamacare way.

Anyone who dares offer an alternative-like Whole Foods CEO the Veg Libertarian John Mackey-must be destroy, for fear that the gates will open and dissent will flood in. Anyone who dares mention that we could reduce costs substantially through tort reform will not be listened to. Anyone who suggests that it is perverse to subsidize employer provided health care while insisting that we must replace the same with Obamacare-shut up. Anyone who dares mention that competition could be increased substantially if insurance could be bought across state lines-nobody cares what you think. Stuff it.

But this tactic is backfiring. You see, not facing any substantial Republican opposition, Democrats thought they could ram through their dream health care plan-complete with a “public option” to squeeze the private sector out, followed by total and complete control of every aspect of our lives that might be connected to the cost of care, not to mention rationing etc. etc….-they were wrong. Now they are forced into fighting not Republicans, but the American people! People are standing up for their liberty, for the limited government created by our Founders, and standing against the leviathan. There is no opposition party of any effective degree. WE THE PEOPLE are the opposition to a tyrannical government. They will regret making enemies of voters. This Constitutional Republic, if not looking much like either, is still small d-democratic. When you call your constituents an unruly mob, when you respond to their concerns with open contempt, they will bite back-not with arms but at the ballot box. The next election is going to be interesting. The flood gates will open-what will the tide coming in look like?

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Filed under Freedom, Healthcare

Employer Provided Healthcare IS a problem

I’ve said before that I do believe there is a problem with the Healthcare system-namely that, by having it as an insurance based system-especially employer provided insurance-disconnects consumers from the price system. Without the information conmmunicated by prices, consumers don’t behave in their normal way-rather than seek out the affordable Healthcare, they diliberately seek the most expensive care-the highest quality-because they don’t even see what the costs are. Without price competition, there is no effort to reduce prices to attract consumers-only to spare no expense. Well, frivilous law suits also contribute to rising costs, as does Medicare, which creates an even greater rift between the consumer and the price system. Well, it turns out that (H/T Pat) Charles Krauthammer has a plan which would eliminate the disconnecting effect of employer based Healthcare.

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Filed under Economics, Healthcare, Thinkers

We are Oceania

The White House Ministry of Truth wishes me to inform you that crimethink about Healthcare will not be tolerated. Crimethink may consist of anything from taking the words of proponents seriously to any kind of ungoodthink more generally. Noting that Party members such as Barney Frank or Jan Schakowsky have explicitly stated that the public “option” will lead to single payer will earn you a trip to the Ministry of Love for unmiseducation. Understand that they have been malqouted, please, and understand that history is being revised to erase Obama having said these things to. If you see anyone saying otherwise, please report it to the White House Ministry of Truth. And remember War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength. (And on an unrelated note, Cooling is Warming 😉 )

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Filed under Fascism, Healthcare, Liberals

Apparently being too thin is bad…

Better chubby than skin and bones, evidently.

So what does this mean? Maybe that the best information available, and the simplistic thinking which is popular with some, can be very, very wrong. If nothing else, it makes government weight control efforts by taxing soda all that more stupid. And yet some think that having a Department of Love-handles and a Secretary of Lard or a “Fat Czar” sound like good ideas. If they are going to regulate your BMI, well, what is the ideal? Is it even the same for all people? Nobody knows, but busybodies want to micromanage this stuff anyway…

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Filed under Fascism, Freedom, Healthcare, Weird Stuff

There is no Healthcare “Market”

Obama says that thepublic sector needs to get into the healthcare biz to create competition. That makes for a  curious inversion. Ordinarily it is the private sector which is supposed to have competition…so what gives? The truth is that the problem with Healthcare isn’t too much private sector, it’s too little market. In fact there is essentially no market in Healthcare. Who goes to their doctor and asks “How much for a physical?” Who price shops medicine? Pretty much nobody. The thing is that the public sector can’t “create” competition, it can only command and control. When it gets into the healthcare game, it will push out the private sector, because that is quite simply in its economic self interest. But it doesn’t need to. What needs to happen is for the price system to actually be put into practice in healthcare. Because without prices, there is no market. That is what is wrong with the whole system. It isn’t the market-it’s the absence of one.


Filed under Economics, Freedom, Healthcare