Unconstitutional Obamacare

February 3, 2011

- See all 31 of my articles

Unconstitutional.  What does that mean?  Webster says that it means it is not according or consistent with the constitution of a body politic (such as the US).

As of Monday January 31, 2011 we now have two judges that have ruled that the Health Care reform bill (Obamacare) is unconstitutional.  The judges say that the individual mandate (the part that says everyone in the country must by health coverage) is the unconstitutional part of the bill.  The most recent judge to rule (Judge Vinson) indicated that since the individual mandate is not separable from the bill, the entire thing must be ruled unconstitutional.  So, can’t they just slip in a version of the bill that doesn’t include the mandate?  Nope. 

The idea behind insurance companies is the law of large numbers.  Say you insure 100 people.  The insurance companies are hoping that only a one or two of those 100 are going to get really sick.  This means that the premiums that the other 98 pay are used to pay for the two people that have serious ailments.  By removing the mandate, all the government will have in their pool are those that can’t get coverage because of their health situation.  It’s hard to stay in the green when you’re collecting $12,000 in premium from someone then paying out $2 Million in claims over the next 5 years.

Healthcare is a serious money pit.  Obama was hoping to eliminate the Bush tax cuts and use that extra money to help fund the health care changes.  When the Bush tax cuts were extended, I can only imagine the thoughts running through people’s minds.   I know what mine was, “How are they going to pay for this now?”  Of course that was followed by a, “Thank God they extended those tax cuts.”

I think back to the days when I was out of school but not working.  I wouldn’t have benefited from the new legislation because I was too old to get on my parents policy and didn’t have money to pay for coverage like the government is requiring.  I purchased a short term hospital-surgical plan.  It didn’t cover any doctor visits, any meds or any ER visits; if I needed surgery the policy would kick in.  That is what most people really need to have.  So, why are we forcing everyone to buy coverage that they really don’t want or need?   Why are we forcing anyone to buy anything?  Do we really have a right to tell people how they are going to spend their money?

I like the legislative proposal in South Dakota right now.  Everyone (within 6 months of turning 21) must buy a firearm.  Don’t want it?  Don’t need it?  That doesn’t matter.  You are now required to spend your money to buy a firearm of your choosing.  This isn’t a big deal, $700 for a new Glock is much cheaper than a year’s worth of insurance premiums.

I like the display that these representatives are putting on.  The liberals will be very happy that everyone has healthcare but will they feel the same warm fuzzy tickle up their leg if everyone has a firearm?  The reaction that a liberal has to that proposal is about the same reaction I have to being told that I must buy healthcare.

This is definitely the time to move forward with repealing the healthcare bill.  We need a bipartisan (non-partisan would be even better) group to sit down and make the healthcare system better without jamming things down our throat.  We could even take a year or two to do it and get it right!  Why do it in three months?  Was that necessary?  This bill was crap from the start and now we’re finding that it isn’t constitutional. 

Let’s work on improving the system, establishing risk pools, not mandating coverage and get tort laws reformed.  That would be a great start that both sides of the aisle can embrace.  It should also make a significant improvement in our system without incurring huge amounts of debt.  If that doesn’t work we can always go further, but this idea of jumping headfirst into an empty swimming pool isn’t working.

It will be interesting to see what the Supreme Court ruling will be on this.  The justices also will need to remember to watch their backs over the next couple of years.  Who knows what else they’ll do to keep Obamacare alive.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. kosmo
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 08:32:58

    I see three interlocking issues related to health care reform:

    1) Forcing people to have insurance
    2) Forcing insurance companies to take people with pre-existing conditions
    3) Forcing hospitals to provide emergency coverage

    As I see it, these are an all-or-nothing proposition. Forcing insurance companies to take bad risks without some sort of way to get good risks into the pool makes no sense – people will wait until they are sick to get insurance (since they couldn’t be denied). I think most of us have seen the effects of hospitals being unable to deny emergency treatment – some people have begun using the ER as their primary care physician, causing delays for people with actual emergenicies – and costing hospitals a lot of money that they often don’t recoup. And there are the obvious concerns about the invidual mandate.

    I see health care as a three way partnership (although some would say four way, with government involvement). Forcing one group(s) to make concession while the other(s) don’t will prove problematic. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to see hospitals jump on Vinson’s ruling to claim that being forced to provide emergency treatment in situation where they won’t get paid is also unconstitional.

    Should be a fun ride. It’d be nice to just fast track this to the US Supreme Court and get it resolved.


  2. Martin Kelly
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 10:00:11

    I agree with Kosmo and Squeeky. The only problem I have with Kosmo is the assurtion that the Hospitals will join in claiming an exemption. For the hospitals, costs are garraunteed by the county, this is true for every county in the United States, so they actually have no risk. The problem is as you described it, people with real emergencies are having difficulty getting treatment.

    On the gun thing, there is a couny in west Texas that has the same rule, at the age of 16 everyone must have a firearm. The difference is that in that county, if you cannot affort to purchase the weapon, the county will provide one. The county population is about 10,000. There are well over 100,000 fire arms in that county. As you drive down I-10, there are signs stating that “every citizen in this county is armed”. There is very little personal (face to face) crime in that county. I do not remember what county it is, maybe Squeeky knows.


  3. kosmo
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 10:34:40

    “For the hospitals, costs are garraunteed by the county, this is true for every county in the United States, so they actually have no risk”

    Are you 100% sure about that? I have contradictory information about this as it pertains to a specific local hospital.


  4. Squeaky
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 23:10:04

    Martin, I’m LOVING the thought of a county like that. I hadn’t ever heard of it but they have a new fan. It’s probably across the border from Juarez or in that area. Sound close?

    I’m thinking that I need to become a special voting member for the House and Senate. If I had that voting option, Obamacare would be GONE. That would give us the opportunity to put something together that will make the majority of the US happy.

    I’m a dreamer and an optimist though. Now that the healthcare has passed, it will be here until it breaks us.


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