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View Diary: Sixth Circuit Upholds Individual Mandate In ACA As Constitutional (85 comments)

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    •  Does it matter? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MsKathy, Gooserock, tomjones

      I'm afraid that once it gets to Fox's supreme Court, it's a goner.  It will be another 5-4 conservative victory.

      I've also read that if the mandate gets struck down then all of the bill is a goner because of the way it was written.

      •  What seems significant to me (9+ / 0-)

        is you had a Republican judge rule in favor here. Hard to translate that to the SCOTUS, but that gives me hope that Kennedy, and possibly one of the conservatives could actually vote in favor as well.

      •  No, and yes... (7+ / 0-)

        One of the Republican appointed judges actually ruled to uphold ACA. And if more GOP appointees on the 4th and 11th Circuit courts rule to uphold, I think it's a good sign we'll at least get Kennedy to rule to uphold ACA. There's really a strong case to be made that the Commerce Clause and Necessary & Proper Clause (aka "The Elastic Clause") allowed Congress to pass ACA and include provisions like the individual mandate and the insurance exchanges.

        •  because it feeds us to the insurance monsters (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Clarliis, SingleVoter

          Another gazillion involuntary "customers" to feed on, what's not to like?

          •  my only thought is that it's the last stop before (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            majcmb1

            negotiable pharma pricing and then cost controls.  

            bring it on; they can't come fast enough for me.

            It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

            by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:19:34 AM PDT

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            •  that's not even optimism, it's just silly. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kyril, wsexson

              You really think that after successfully feeding 100% of the American public to the most monstrous and psychopathic industry this side of the slave trade, our overlords are somehow going to take pity on us by doing something to lower the costs of medications, much less insurance itself?

              Really?

              Operationalize that: how's it supposed to happen?  Spell out the mechanism.   I'm betting you can't do it.  

              •  the "operationalized mechanism" is an albatross: (0+ / 0-)

                especially in the wake of wall street tabloid hounding, the combination of executive pay, HMO profitability (including margin calculus) and healthcare costs, both to individuals and the government subsidy programs hangs heavy on the head that wears the crown -- as long as pressure will be brought to bear.

                also, can so! :P

                It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

                by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 11:59:22 AM PDT

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                •  That's a big "IF." (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  kyril

                  What you're saying in essence is that the situation will become sufficiently outrageous as to provoke demands for reform.

                  And that got us what, exactly, in the financial industry, after a near collapse of the economy and a de-facto 2nd great depression?

                  The psychopaths at the top got their obscene "packages" in taxpayer dollars, and the voters sent more Republicans to Congress in 2010.  That's the definition of a dysfunctional relationship: staying with one's abusive partner.  

                  Now take the influx of new $$ to the insurance industry, much of which from healthy people so therefore more profits to "invest" in elections: factor in Citizens United and the recent decision approving overt campaign contributions.  Outcome: keep the public confusled (neologism: confused + bamboozled) enough to keep the gravy train rolling over our proverbial dead bodies.  

                  Each step down the present road becomes harder and harder to reverse, plus or minus a generalized social explosion at some point, that could as easily break for overt fascism.  

                  •  you give up - i understand that. (0+ / 0-)

                    But that doesn't mean that more than the current administration is willing to attempt can't be achieved.

                    Alternately, if nothing can be done, all conversation is silly.  Feel free to stick that in your mechanism and operationalize it.

                    It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

                    by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 12:25:02 PM PDT

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                    •  Excuse me? Give up? Are you stoned? (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      kyril

                      This shit has made a socialist out of me.  As for giving up, over my dead body, and I put that one to the test a few years ago too.  

                      Those bastards have us on the road to a banana republic; the major question is whether the endpoint is something on the spectrum of socialism or social democracy, or something on the spectrum of fascism.  And the subsidiary question is whether the outcome will be achieved peacefully or not.  

                      •  If there is no power to command redress and (0+ / 0-)

                        correction within the system, by your admission, I don't see where you would find the collective resolve for revolution, nor the hope that the wisdom could be found to ultimately be creative through the effort.

                        It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

                        by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 01:13:41 PM PDT

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                        •  Emergent collective intelligence. (0+ / 0-)

                          Individual cells in the body can't predict when the immune system is about to kick into high gear: the immune response is emergent and systemic.  

                          There's a decent chance the Republicans have worn out their welcome with the public by taking their 2010 gains and going for sheer smash-and-grab looting on behalf of the plutocracy.  Ohio, Michigan, etc. etc.

                          There's also a decent chance, per the "Obama is doing judo" diary, that he's playing them for all they're worth, until they're exhausted and their "invincible front" collapses.  

                          So we may get "punctuated equilibrium" as we did on the gay rights front, where the end of DADT became a breakthrough for equal marriage.  In which case we may very well get the public option and progressive taxation.

                          Bottom line operationally comes down to "more and better Democrats."  There is no excuse for sitting on the couch next year.  

        •  Is it necessary/proper to require (0+ / 0-)

          insurance purchase so drug makers can sell products for more than ten times what they would sell for otherwise?

          Is it proper for the Congress to grant exclusive product rights, which are constitutionally optional, regardless of price when such unrestrained exclusive rights are helping to drive what is allegedly necessary health insurance into an economic death spiral?

          Is it not first necessary to cap drug prices to reasonable amounts?

          Is it not first necessary to cap doctor fees to reasonable amounts, say in line with French, German, Swiss, or Canadian prices?

          Is it not first necessary to cap hospital charges to reasonable amounts, say in line with German prices?

          Is it not necessary to apply the enumerated powers first? and to the maximum extent compatible with due process?

           

      •  One of the 2/3 justices (6+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        atdnext, Wee Mama, wader, Kitty, tomjones, We Won

        who voted to uphold in this case is a Republican appointee. So this may be the first time a Republican or Democrat has ruled outside of partisan expectations. That's a pretty big deal.

        And I don't think it's a given that the Supreme Court Republican appointees will rule to impose further limits on what defines commerce. It could set precedent they don't want to mess with. Kennedy, of course, is the likeliest to vote to uphold the law, but you never know, he might not be the only one.

      •  Btw, I forgot to add... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kitty, tomjones

        That when I said "yes" above, I intended to agree with you that if the mandate is struck down, the entire ACA is pretty much dismantled. That's why the mandate will probably be the biggest point of contention once this case hits SCOTUS.

      •  Yesterday I read (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        itskevin, Kitty, tomjones

        this, which seems to suggest it won't be simply a 5-4 victory, and some conservatives might be more inclined to vote to uphold the Act.

        "I will never compromise on my commitment to equal rights for all LGBT Americans." - President Obama, 2/28/08

        by indiemcemopants on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:36:40 AM PDT

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      •  Bingo, n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kitty
      •  Mandate struck down --> public option. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gooserock

        If the mandate is struck down, what we get is the public option as an alternative.  

    •  From the Dissent (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, atdnext, wader, Publius2008

      and it is really shocking:
      "To the fatalistic view that Congress will always prevail and courts should step
      back and let the people, if offended, speak through their political representatives, I say
      that “courts were designed to be an intermediate body between the people and the
      legislature, in order, among other things, to keep the latter within the limits assigned to
      their authority.” The Federalist No. 78 (A. Hamilton). In this arena, the “public force”
      is entrusted to the courts. Oliver Wendell Holmes, The Path of the Law, 10 Harv. L.
      Rev. 457, 457 (1897). “[W]here the will of the legislature, declared in its statutes, stands
      in opposition to that of the people, declared in the Constitution, the judges ought to be
      governed by the latter rather than the former.” The Federalist No. 78."

      What is striking is the complete lack of case law in the last part of the dissent.  Really this is an attempt to return the law to its state before the New Deal.  As such it is breathtaking in the extent to which it would override Democratic processes.  Given the last 30 years of conservative writings on the need to defer to the legislature, it is stunning in its hypocrisy.

      The problem for those who want to hold HCR unconstitutional will be to identify why this law should be overturned but the rest of the post New Deal Legislation should not.  The Dissent's case is one familiar to any defense lawyer and built on dicta from concurring opinions.  The Dissent's opinion in a way is nothing less than an attempt to undue the 14th Amendment, and the Civil War.

      The bitter truth of deep inequality has been disguised by an era of cheap imported goods and the anyone-can-make-it celebrity myth - Polly Toynbee

      by fladem on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:03:06 AM PDT

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    •  That's it for now (5+ / 0-)

      Can't speak for anyone else, but I found the opinions horribly written.

      The dissent is simply nonsensical from a circuit court judge.

    •  War is peace, non-consumption is commerce: (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SingleVoter, wsexson

      First, "commerce" is deftly redefined from referring to business activity, to become "economics" as a whole, and then:

      "In Raich, the Supreme Court explained that “‘[e]conomics’ refers to ‘the production, distribution, and consumption of commodities.’” "

      Next, the definition of economics is expanded to include "inactivity":

      "As long as Congress does not exceed the established limits of its Commerce Power, there is no constitutional impediment to enacting legislation that could be characterized as regulating inactivity."  (emphasis added)

      Let's be clear about what this decision accomplishes:

      It gives government the power to regulate economic inactivity.  Translation:  failure to consume becomes a form of commerce.  

      Thus any time Congress finds a "rational basis," it can enact one or another forms of compulsory consumption.  

      Where a power is given, it will be used to its full extent.  And thus we will see, in due course:

      = Compulsory 401Ks along the path toward the end of Social Security.  

      = The end of Medicare since seniors too can be compelled to participate in "the market," thus there is "no need" for Medicare.

      = Compulsory new car purchases the next time the auto industry needs a bail-out.   ("Driving is a privilege not a right," and the federal gov can withhold certain monies from states that refuse to make the "driving privilege" contingent upon purchase of a new car whenever required.)

      = Compulsory Christmas shopping when a retail-sector recession might otherwise "threaten" the economy.   (Think it's far-fetched? Just wait and see.)

      All of this and more will throw open the questions:

      Does the power to forbid economic inactivity supersede the freedom of conscience to engage in a low-consumption lifestyle?

      Does the power to forbid economic inactivity supersede the free speech right to advocate a low-consumption lifestyle?

      Or do we end up with one of those interesting paradoxes that, as with advocating revolution vs. engaging in revolution, it's protected speech to advocate a low-consumption lifestyle but prohibited to actually do it?

      This isn't just a can of worms: it's a can of parasitic tapeworms waiting to infest the guts of the body politic.

      Mark my words.

      •  "non-consumption" in this instance is abdication (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ahumbleopinion

        of personal responsibility in that it doesn't connote real inactivity but rather, on the whole, a default to the one of the least fiscally efficient and therefore one of the least financially responsible uses of the public dime.

        "non-consumption" is a delayed cost with one hell of a service charge, submitted to the taxpayers and policy holders at large.

        It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

        by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 03:42:27 PM PDT

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        •  spoken like a true insurance company shill. (0+ / 0-)

          I'm not accusing you of actually being an insurance company shill, but you're spreading their memes for them, just as surely as you'd be spreading cold viruses by sneezing in other peoples's faces.  

          And all of that is bullshit.  Bullshit that disappears altogether in a public option scenario, and a single-payer scenario.  

          You're trying to have it both ways, and it doesn't work.

          And on the off chance that you actually are an insurance industry shill, take this message to your handlers:  We will destroy you, by whatever means are necessary.

          •  ChaCha - you blather; your accusation is without (0+ / 0-)

            accusation.

            You don't care whether I am a schill or not.  You only want to create a taint on those that best you.

            It would be better if you simply cared.

            It seems curiosity has killed the cat that had my tongue.

            by Murphoney on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:28:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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