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Bush-appointed judge dismisses legal challenge to health reform

By Sahil Kapur
Friday, February 4, 2011 10:35 EDT
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WASHINGTON – A federal judge on Thursday sided with the Obama administration on the sweeping health care reform law, throwing out a challenge to its constitutionality.

Keith Starrett, a George W. Bush- appointed US District Court judge in southern Mississippi, said opponents of the individual mandate had offered “insufficient” basis to challenge the government’s ability to regulate health insurance coverage.

The 23-page decision, obtained by the Huffington Post‘s Sam Stein, read: “The Court finds that the allegations of Plaintiffs’ First Amended Petition, as stated therein, are insufficient to show that they have standing to challenge the minimum essential coverage provision of the PPACA [Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act]. Therefore, the Court dismisses Plaintiffs’ First Amended Petition without prejudice.”

It concluded, “the Court finds that the ten primary Plaintiffs have not plead sufficient facts to establish that they have standing to challenge the Constitutionality of the minimum essential coverage provision of the PPACA.”

The lawsuit was filed by Mississippi Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant and 10 other state residents, according to the Hattiesburg American, who argued that the law would grant Congress “unlimited power to regulate, prohibit, or mandate any or all activities in the United States.”

Starrett offered them 30 days to amend their complaint.

The ruling is the latest in a heated legal battle that is widely expected to reach the Supreme Court. Including Starrett, five judges have weighed in on challenges to the law: three have said it passes the legal test and two have ruled it unconstitutional.

Florida federal judge Roger Vinson made waves earlier this week when he declared the entire reforms unconstitutional on the basis that the individual mandate was legally unjustifiable and “not severable” from the law.

The White House dismissed it and the other legal ruling against the law as “judicial activism” by Republican-aligned judges.

 
 
 
 
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  • Anonymous

    There you have it, folks. According to the courts, the government can force you to buy expensive things you can’t afford upon penalty of jail.

  • Anonymous

    Yup. And if you do not understand that the world, including us, is in the midst of a globalist takeover, using any sort of government stooge and structure they can, then, well… open thine eyes.

  • H.P. Loathecraft

    But if an insurance company denies you coverage they can be fined, what is it, a whole $100.00 a day (?)

  • Taleisin

    This isn’t an effective way for our leaders to have a reasonable debate.
    Why not use the internet and allow people to vote on it?
    At least, get a guesstimate of what people want. Wouldn’t that be democratic?
    It can’t be more dodgy than an electronic voting machine and they’re considered acceptable.

  • Anonymous

    The corporotization of medicine is killing us. It is the ultimate clash of morality and greed. Humanity has been through this many times and still does not get it.

    Love one another.
    Do as you would have done.
    First do no harm.
    Listen, reason, respond.

  • Anonymous

    Please substantiate the “penalty of jail” statement.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/CTGKYFNDGU6KJEHQNNPXA64ZZI Pj

    First of all, there is no “penalty of jail.” The assertion is false, and you should therefore withdraw it. Don’t bother arguing the point… it is false, and therefore cannot be substantiated. But once you try to substantiate it and fail, then you should withdraw the assertion.

    Next: In 1792, Congress passed the Militia Act of 1792, requiring:

    “…every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch, with a box therein, to contain not less than twenty four cartridges, suited to the bore of his musket or firelock, each cartridge to contain a proper quantity of powder and ball; or with a good rifle, knapsack, shot-pouch, and powder-horn, twenty balls suited to the bore of his rifle, and a quarter of a pound of powder…”
    http://www.constitution.org/mil/mil_act_1792.htm

    So quit whining.

    As far as “expensive things you can’t afford” goes, it is the risk of illness or severe injury which is actually the expensive thing that you can’t afford, and therefore needs to be insured against.

    Since hospitals are generally prohibited by law from refusing necessary medical care, it is those who are insured who now collectively pick up the tab for the uninsured, but worse: they do so at many multiples of what that cost would otherwise be, as it is typically rendered through an emergency room… the most expensive delivery option there is.

    So far, the federal district courts are divided on the issue. Likely the appellate courts will be as well… but it may go directly to the Supreme Court, since it is going there anyway.

  • Anonymous

    Hmm, imagine, government forcing you to buy private for profit insurance or you are fined, this is not what we have in Canada, it protects the companies (fascism) and it profits them..keeps their monopoly. Their stocks rose on the announcement of this program, many doctors are going to quit too. Using this as precedent politicians are going to feel free to tell you what you can and cannot buy in the future if this passes. We need real universal healthcare, not this crap and I am sorry but like in Britain (not Canada) you are put under a cost benefit analysis.

  • Anonymous

    Yep, whoopee

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/CTGKYFNDGU6KJEHQNNPXA64ZZI Pj

    How to guard against trollocracy, though?

  • Anonymous

    They will even (gasp!) pay subsidies if you can’t afford it! The horror!

  • Anonymous

    The court did not “uphold” the health care reform legislation. It held that the plaintiffs did not have standing to challenge it — quite a different thing.

  • Anonymous

    I’m sorry Obama… I support the law but without a public option I have a feeling it will be thrown out. But, you knew that didn’t you, you corporate wh0re.

  • Anonymous

    MyEpicTruth is myopic. Without insurance, one can’t afford to get sick.

  • Taleisin

    I haven’t heard of trollocracy before. Yes that would require honesty and there tends to be a lack of that in American politics. In ancient Greece, the citizens got to vote themselves rather than have representatives do it for them. You guys don’t appear to like your representatives.

    Maybe we could txt them in like we do with ‘See America Dance’ votes. Do a rough poll to determine what the nation thinks and decide if they want to vote on it themselves.

    Keep the debate factual and explain reasonably what the options are, and let the American people choose.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/2CDWIFBAEAK2R3FP6O3UXNVTJQ kjhkngjnhkj f

    what????? what are you doing pointing out things liek taht???? you damn rePUKEliCONS are all the same!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11111

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/2CDWIFBAEAK2R3FP6O3UXNVTJQ kjhkngjnhkj f

    Not “they” – we. We will pay, through higher taxes.

    The Government doesn’t have anything of it’s own, only what it takes from the people.

  • Anonymous

    I haven’t read the complaint yet, but from the Huffpo article, the judge didn’t UPHOLD the PPACA at all. He said the plaintiffs had submitted an inadequate pleading, told them what part of their complaint needs to be fixed, and has given them a 30-day window in which to do so. If they can indeed jump thru the ‘standing hoop,’ there is no telling how he’ll rule on the mandate.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, like the Government taking you and/or your kids to fight in wars to secure another country’s natural resources, said wars run by people who have a financial interest in the weapons and natural resources industries. We have the mindless, patriotic duty to sacrifice our and our childrens’ lives for these wars and to pay for them with taxes, but God FORFEND that our duty include paying to maintain the health of our glorious cannon fodder.

  • Anonymous

    It’s not really even right-wing activism…it’s a far-right teabagger activism….you can spot the right-wing teabagger Judicial activists by the way the either choose Corporations “rights” over the people, or when they try weaken Government protections of the people, Citizens United or ruling a health care plan as “unconstitutional, etc,) …they should be signaled out and prosecuted…stripped of their robe and barred from practicing the Law, prosecuted for political activism…we can not have a country where the law is based on a Judges political whims and alliances….(that WOULD be unconstitutional)

  • Shawn Rosvold

    So do you disagree with car insurance? Isn’t that the government forcing you to buy something upon penalty of jail?

  • Anonymous

    Not all judges appointed by republicans are activist political hacks. The one in FL and the one in VA who has a record of financial ties to the healthcare activism are. Republicans are thugs. That is the basis of everything republican or rightwing.

  • Anonymous

    This is not unusual in a court case. The issues that need to be addressed may make their argument moot, anyway. The judge is saying they have not made their case and have to come up with another way to express their concerns regarding Constitutionality, which may not be possible.

  • Anonymous

    I saw today, that Aetna made huge profits in health insurance last quarter. Hmmm. This new health care law bill is not hurting them one bit. It may be increasing their profits.

  • Anonymous

    The Fascist 5 justices in the SCOTUS will eventually offer an opinion and then throw out the law, just like they did with the campaign finance law. Judicial activism is OK when it’s right-wing activism. Scalia probably won’t wait until he hears the case to pass judgement on it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UOZY33676ETK2DGLBUSD7L6B7A B

    Troll

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TX3MXXPF52BXCKGNLDNPADILPQ paul rogers

    So what you are saying is that, if their legal interpretation furthers a leftist agenda, they are pure as the driven snow and wise old scholars. If however, their interpretation does not further that agenda, they are right wing activist fascists?

  • Guest

    Both sides are thugs Kasinca. Both sides have done their part to get us where we are now. Both sides have the same overall agenda. Stop thinking 2 dimensional and look behind the curtain.

    Oz is actually a group of offshore bankers running the world behind the scenes. They have their grubby little hands on both sides of the political spectrum. The kicker is, they could give a rip about us, look at the Georgia Guidstones, pretty much sums up what the fat cats have in mind.

  • Ed Dominguez

    In a couple of day’s if not hours the GOP will call Starrett a traitor. It’s funny that the GOP were hoping that this man who was a Bush man that he would back the idea the law was illegal.

  • Anonymous

    So what are you saying the recent decision regarding corporations donating to candidates is a good ruling? The republicans are great projectionist. All we heard about during the bush adm. was we don’t want activist judges! Which of course meant we are going to get activist judges on the supreme court to work for the republican agenda. I wonder how much money exchanged hands with that decision.

  • Guest
  • Anonymous

    No. What he is saying as that a matter of FACT (not important to RW nutjobs) is that this is the most activist court in recent memory. SC judges should not hang out with the VP or allow their wives to be tea party activists.

  • justintime

    Conservatism is the domination of society by an aristocracy. Conservatism is incompatible with democracy, prosperity, and civilization in general. It is a destructive system of inequality and prejudice that is founded on deception and has no place in the modern world.
    Philip Agre, August 2004

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for posting!!!

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    What is being LOST in all of these headlines and discussions is that the INSURANCE companies want to have the mandate. Without that the mandate of having HEALTHY insureds they can not afford the extension of coverage for pre-existing conditions.

  • talis

    And force you to be drafted, drive at posted speeds, buy car insurance, pay taxes etc.
    You should really educate yourself on the commerce clause and the court rulings that have validated it.
    That being said, I believe that we will all end up with medicare or something like it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    No, no, no. You’re either on the red team or blue. Get with the program…

  • talis

    Some of us understand that taxes are what makes this country roll :)
    Im willing to pay taxes to have infrastructure and healthcare for all even if it means we pay more.

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    I’ll make you a deal RPR, if you vow to NEVER get treatment of any kind at a US hospital open to the general public OR take any drug developed by and American drug company or University I’ll let you opt out of the system.

    Why do you have to stay away from the American health care system? Simple because my tax dollars have subsidized EVERY facet of the operation of the system from the construction of the hospitals and teaching universities to the funding of the drug treatment research to the doctors student loans to the non-profit tax status of many hospitals.

    This is OUR system. It is not, as the for profit hospitals would like you to believes, a standalone industry that get no help from the TAX PAYERS.

    Therefore it is not only reasonable and moral that we DEMAND that ALL who access it pay for its cost and up keep but is CONSTITUTIONALLY valid under the commerce clause that when you use it that you pay for its use AND that WE THE PEOPLE have the right to set the TERMS of USE!

  • Anonymous

    You’re right and by extension the same economic logic holds true whether the mandated health insurance is private or single-payer public insurance.

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    Have you learned nothing from FL 2000 and OH 2004? The Repugnants have great hackers and have no compunction in using them to further their agenda!

    A vote yes but not with ANY computers involved!

  • Sarcasmlost

    Exactly. Tossing it out for lack of standing/justiciability is not bravery; it’s the opposite. It doesn’t touch the merits, and it permits ducking the issue. Moreover, as you note, it was dismissal without prejudice. Thus, he’s either A) setting this up for appellate-proof grounds (not unthinkable with this Court and their love of limiting actions) or B) will keep the plaintiffs running to satisfy Lujan, etc for years.

  • Anonymous

    Bullshit, … Take a look at the CEO’s pay package, such as Bill McGuire, … 1.7 BILLION dollars for 10 years?

    WTF does anyone need money like that for? Remember, … that 1.7 BILLION he made for that 10 years was only made available to him by DENYING claims in which PEOPLE DIED in order for that to happen!!!!

    BTW, … 1.7 BILLION = 1,700 MILLION

    Question: What ONE man is realistically worth that?
    Answer: NO ONE!

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    No probelm if you don’t want health insurance stay out of OUR healthcare system….see above for a more detailed explanation!

  • justintime

    So now the Health Care Law score is three US District Judges FOR constitutionality and two AGAINST. There are 94 US Court districts and a total of 26 lawsuits pending against the Health Care Law. This is not over by any stretch of the imagination. I think oktoss is right. This will be kicked upstairs to the Supremes. The big issue is severability. The dems forgot to put in a clause to assure that if part of the law is found unconstitutional, the entire law can’t be declared unconstitutional.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    I don’t exactly see the Dems breaking up monopolies and denying corporations their “rights”, I don’t see them strengthening our protections, I also don’t see how you can, with a straight face, call forced health insurance with the punishment being an IRS fine, a health plan. As far as the rest your statements, just remember when and if the Rethugs take the White House all those things will just be turned around and used against judges they want to single out.

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    You already do pay for the uninsured according to studies it’s about $385 per insured per year! And they STILL don’t have insurance!

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ Stumptownhero

    What can you do now if they deny coverage or RECIND coverage that you have been paying for? Oh right just shut up and DIE!

  • Anonymous

    Does Egypt ring a bell?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    Umm actually you aren’t forced to buy car insurance and we don’t currently have a draft (which has nothing to do with commerce)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LJMNZL5KJFX2H5CKWK2S75HU7I Kevin

    Do I need to buy it if I am not a driver and have no plans on driving?

  • http://www.amazon.com/Mine-Daniel-R-Cobb/dp/1441474358/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_1 Daniel R Cobb

    If you’re going to drive a car on the road, you are required to carry car insurance, for yourself and others you may collide with. If you own a home, you are required to have homeowner’s insurance. If you work, you are required to pay social security taxes. So if you have no medical insurance and you wind up in an emergency room and in 5 days, tally up a $75,000 bill to save your life, if you cannot pay, the bill is passed on to paying customers with increased medical fees, i.e., to you and me. Everyone uses medical services, but the uninsured often use emergency room services, which are the most expensive, and avoiding preventative care which would have saved them then resulting the emergency room visit. Uninsured patients cost every one. This is why we need mandated healthcare insurance.

  • http://www.amazon.com/Mine-Daniel-R-Cobb/dp/1441474358/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_1 Daniel R Cobb

    The only person who doesn’t need healthcare insurance is the billionaire, and the person who will never ever need medical care. If you don’t need medical care and never will, then you’re already dead.

  • Anonymous

    You don’t have to own a car, Shawn.

  • Guest

    We need Medicare for all! No compromise!

  • Anonymous

    This is why we need Universal Health Care. Everyone will use the health care system during their lifetime. It is not really an option. Therefore, everyone needs to be covered. Why the cost of seeing a doctor or using the system is so expensive is another issue. One hour in the emergency room will cost the average city-dweller around $2,000. That does not include tests, x-rays, specialists, bandages, casts, splints, tongue depressors, aspirin, etc.
    Now, if everyone paid into the system, a la Medicare or the public school system, everyone would be covered and the simplification of the entire system would save tons of money, for everyone. You and I are paying for uninsured people at a rate far more expensive than if every person paid a portion through taxes. It works everywhere else in the world, but our politicians are bought and sold to the highest bidder, which happens to be Big Insurance and Big Pharma.

  • http://www.amazon.com/Mine-Daniel-R-Cobb/dp/1441474358/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_1 Daniel R Cobb

    AGREED.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TX3MXXPF52BXCKGNLDNPADILPQ paul rogers

    The only problem with your argument is that it is a proven FACT that (excpet for Kagan) this is the LEAST activist SCOTUS in U.S,. history. That point isn’t up for debate anymore.

  • Anonymous

    why not have everyone pay 2%. if you make 20000 annually you pay 400 dollars or 8 dollars a week.
    then you are fully covered for everything. then you get these scumbag bankers taking their 200 million bonuses, fine that scumbag pays 400000 for his, it all equals out that way

  • Anonymous

    To quote Tommy from one of my favorite films, “Miller’s Crossing,” “That ain’t the record either!” There’s several people in America made more than 1.7 Billion last year alone. And in 2006 McGuire only ranked 133 in CEO compensation by Forbes magazine. Life is good at the top, where all those incremental production increases aggregate!

  • d f bizzle

    What state do you live in where you don’t need auto-liability insurance to drive on public roads?

  • GunTotingLib

    There is no penalty of jail. In 2014 if you don’t have some form of health insurance you may have to pay a little extra tax then those of us that do.

    Also, if you don’t buy a house you will pay a little more tax then those of us that buy a house.

    if you don’t buy a hybrid car you will pay a little more tax then those of us that buy a hybrid car.

    if you don’t buy a college education for your child you will pay a little more tax then those of us that buy a college education for our child.

    There are several things that the government has decided that if you buy you will pay less tax then those of you that don’t buy those things. You are free NOT to buy health insurance , you will just pay a little extra tax just like you will if you do not buy a house or a hybrid car, ect.

  • GunTotingLib

    Well I am ok paying a little tax to help poor people keep from dieing from lack of health care.

    “Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me”

    Jesus was obviously a bleeding heart liberal. If someone is “sick” and you do not “look after” them you are destine to hell. That is not according to this liberal atheist, but that is according to Matthew 25 and Jesus himself. Seeing that all Americans have access to heath care is not only the right thing to do, the American thing to do, but for all you Christians , it is the christian thing to do.

  • GunTotingLib

    That is the cost to pay for the expenses of the uninsured that they are unable to pay because they are poor and uninsured. That will go away if every one has some form of insurance.
    People go to emergency rooms when they are desperately sick. That is the most expensive type of care. and most are unable to pay. If they could go see a doctor for a $20 or $30 co payment and get treatment BEFORE they need to go to the emergency room, it would be cheaper for us all. Who do you think pays for that unpayed $4000 ER visit? It is added to each of our bills.

  • GunTotingLib

    But if you have a heart attack, a stroke, trouble breathing they will take you to the ER and save your life. and they will present you with a $40,000 or $50,000 or more bill. And when you can’t pay it who do you think will? Each of us that have insurance will. Because the cost of our health care goes up to cover the cost of noncollectable bills. I say if you a willing to wear an unremovealbe bracelet that says “let me die”, then maybe we can let you have no health insurance.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    And these whiners are the exact same people who complain about freeloaders. Go figure . . .

  • GunTotingLib

    Right, need to get corporations out of health care. Do we want a corporation that has as it’s PRIMARY, number 1 responsibility, TO MAKE PROFIT, deciding how we should treat your sickness, ect? Those are where the real death panels sit, corporate boardrooms. I trust our American government to pay my health care bills more then I trust a for profit corporation, run by a mega millionaire CEO who will make more millions if he care figure out how to save money treating my sickness. We trust our government to care for our grandparents and our military men and they seem to like it. If any of our leaders need care they go to the socialized Bethesda naval hospital with it’s government doctors.They are not going to corporation hospitals.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    Plus, and this is very important, the likelihood is that potentially catastrophic medical conditions will be caught at the earliest stages, instead of the emergency room mode, which is usually the last stages, requiring Herculean efforts and expenses to reverse, if possible at all.

  • GunTotingLib

    We need a public option. Or be able to buy into medicare.

  • GunTotingLib

    Right on!

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    “founded on deception” —

    The assignment for this text should be to make a list of the examples one finds of this element — for a 101 course, needless to say. Most of us here can think of plenty.

    But this is the most important element in the quote, and must be propounded without stint.

    Without systemic deception applied at every juncture, the whole edifice would collapse of its own weight.

  • GunTotingLib

    Most people pay more already. At my work place Ins cost $52 a week. Many of our workers make $10.00 a hour. That is $400.00 a week gross pay. 52/400=13%. They pay a health care tax of 13%. Because I make a lot more money I only pay 6%. The working class is hit much harder. We could all pay a couple % , employers pay a couple % and we all could have health care. Just by getting corporations out of HC ins we save the 30% they take off the top right a way.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    One single ruling shows how ludicrous your post is: Citizens United. It not only overturns a century of what should be stare decisis but was actually solicited by the smirking CJ. That, my friend, is activism.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    Time to reverse Marbury v Madison then

  • justintime

    Glad you liked the Philip Agre quote from:

    What is Conservatism and What is Wrong With It
    http://polaris.gseis.ucla.edu/pagre/conservatism.html

    Here’s another excerpt:

    From the pharaohs of ancient Egypt to the self-regarding thugs of ancient Rome to the glorified warlords of medieval and absolutist Europe, in nearly every urbanized society throughout human history, there have been people who have tried to constitute themselves as an aristocracy. These people and their allies are the conservatives.

    The tactics of conservatism vary widely by place and time. But the most central feature of conservatism is deference: a psychologically internalized attitude on the part of the common people that the aristocracy are better people than they are. Modern-day liberals often theorize that conservatives use “social issues” as a way to mask economic objectives, but this is almost backward: the true goal of conservatism is to establish an aristocracy, which is a social and psychological condition of inequality. Economic inequality and regressive taxation, while certainly welcomed by the aristocracy, are best understood as a means to their actual goal, which is simply to be aristocrats. More generally, it is crucial to conservatism that the people must literally love the order that dominates them. Of course this notion sounds bizarre to modern ears, but it is perfectly overt in the writings of leading conservative theorists such as Burke. Democracy, for them, is not about the mechanisms of voting and office-holding. In fact conservatives hold a wide variety of opinions about such secondary formal matters. For conservatives, rather, democracy is a psychological condition. People who believe that the aristocracy rightfully dominates society because of its intrinsic superiority are conservatives; democrats, by contrast, believe that they are of equal social worth. Conservatism is the antithesis of democracy. This has been true for thousands of years.

    The defenders of aristocracy represent aristocracy as a natural phenomenon, but in reality it is the most artificial thing on earth. Although one of the goals of every aristocracy is to make its preferred social order seem permanent and timeless, in reality conservatism must be reinvented in every generation. This is true for many reasons, including internal conflicts among the aristocrats; institutional shifts due to climate, markets, or warfare; and ideological gains and losses in the perpetual struggle against democracy. In some societies the aristocracy is rigid, closed, and stratified, while in others it is more of an aspiration among various fluid and factionalized groups. The situation in the United States right now is toward the latter end of the spectrum. A main goal in life of all aristocrats, however, is to pass on their positions of privilege to their children, and many of the aspiring aristocrats of the United States are appointing their children to positions in government and in the archipelago of think tanks that promote conservative theories.

    Conservatism in every place and time is founded on deception. The deceptions of conservatism today are especially sophisticated, simply because culture today is sufficiently democratic that the myths of earlier times will no longer suffice.

    Your first assignment: Read the entire essay. You’ll be glad you did.

  • Anonymous

    This judge did not “uphold” health care reform. What he said was that the people trying to sue were not in a position to sue (they did not have standing). This is not a comment on the legality/constitutionality of the law, which he did not judge. The headline is mis-leading.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    Actually, the judge did NOT say the law was constitutional. Read the article, it said the plaintiffs lacked standing, that same f*ing BS federal judges have used to throw our domestic spying lawsuits.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    I do not like traditional “Western” medicine. I would only go to the doctor or hospital if I needed emergency surgery, for example after a car accident. Why the bloody hell should I be forced to buy a product I don’t want? So you can get it cheaper? Thats theft.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    WHY WHY WHY is “health care” so expensive in the USA? In France, a tourist would pay about 5 or 10 grand for such a stay, a fee most working Americans could hope to pay off in year or so.

    Because in the USA the government acts to protect “health care” from reasonable competition. These sick care companies then give generously to the politicians, and we end up with a system that is completely fucked, Obama’s “change” did nothing to fix this.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    I am not aware of ANY state that forces you to drive a car.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    Reread the article. The judge did not say the law was constitutional. It was thrown out for that most dubious of reasons- the plaintiffs lacked standing to sue. Same thing they do with domestic spying suits.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    Fascism is the merger of Corporate and State power. Which is what this law does, so there is quite a bit of irony in calling those opposing it fascist.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    Which is why the insurance lobby spent so much to buy the individual mandate.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/42THFKXIPMJHQBIH6OPI4RVIDY Thebes

    So, tyranny is fine so long as its a tyranny of the majority?

  • Anonymous

    Facts to sane and rational people. Facts do not matter to anti-American types.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    the true goal of conservatism is to establish an aristocracy“Silver spoons to some mouths, golden spoons to others
    Dare a man to change the given order?
    Though they smile and tell us all of us are brothers
    Never was it true this side of Jordan.” — Old Coat

    More generally, it is crucial to conservatism that the people must literally love the order that dominates them. Like the “philosophy” of Leo Strauss, wherein the Sages care not for religion or patriotism, but they promulgate both, for the instruction of the Gentlemen, who fight their perpetual wars. The bulk of humanity, the Vulgar Many, are merely cattle to be exploited or killed as necessary.

    democrats, by contrast, believe that they are of equal social worthThe Romans called the early Christians “atheists” because they rejected the whole Roman pantheon, even though their god Jesus had his own statue there. They were also called “Levellers” because a slave could be a bishop.

    Conservatism in every place and time is founded on deception.“These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power. In vain they seek to hide behind the flag and the Constitution. In their blindness they forget what the flag and the Constitution stand for. Now, as always, they stand for democracy, not tyranny; for freedom, not subjection; and against a dictatorship by mob rule and the over-privileged alike.” — FDR, 1936

    Your first assignment: Read the entire essay. You'll be glad you did.I’ve already copied it into my PDA’s 8G SD card. I know a gold mine when I see one!

  • Anonymous

    Because if you do need emergency surgery or are in a car accident and you DON’T have insurance AND you can’t afford to pay the resulting medical bills, guess who pays to treat your sorry ass? The REST OF US.

    In any case, you won’t be forced to buy anything. You will have the option of not buying health insurance and instead paying a tax penalty that is, relative to the cost of insurance, very modest at the higher of $695 or 2.5% of income.

    Actually, your argument MIGHT work, so long as you and others like you would be required, in the event of catastrophic illness or injury where Western medicine was required, would be forced to pay for all such treatment IN ADVANCE, regardless of the medical consequences. That would give you your “freedom” and alleviate the rest of us of carrying the burden of your risk. Deal?

  • Anonymous

    How is this comment a “troll” comment… i made the same one before I saw this one.. the headline is misleading.. we should demand better of Raw Story than manipulating the headline to sound different than the story.

  • Anonymous

    You are exactly right, health care insurance companies on average only spend 65% of revenue on care, the rest goes to admin expense, advertising, senior management bonuses, dividends to share holders, etc. Medicare spends 95% on cost of care and only 5% on admin expense. This means that for each billion dollars, 50% more money is spent on patient care with a single payer system. It’s time to end the for-profit health care insurance system in the U.S.

  • Anonymous

    This argument is a bit dishonest. The reality in most parts of this country is that not driving a car is not a realistic option. Of course, in my case, living in NYC, I don’t own a car because I really don’t need to own one. On those occasions that I need to rent one, however, I, too, must fork out money for liability coverage.

  • justintime

    Here’s another gem from Philip Agre:

    Learning How to Write http://elenarazlogova.org/hist300/agre.pdf
    Philip E. Agre
    October 1998

    Society has given up teaching people how to write. Everyone is to blame for this.
    Teaching people how to write is labor-intensive and therefore costly. It entails unpleasant
    work. It involves language — lots of it. And it requires prolonged seclusion from noise
    and moving images.

    The real problem is political. Conservatives and liberals, it seems, both value social
    engineering more than good writing. Conservatives worship order and structure, and their
    soul-destroying formalism gave writing a bad name. Liberals prefer freedom. They
    stopped teaching the oppressive forms of language in the name of personal expression.
    The problem, of course, is that you can’t express yourself if you can’t write a decent sentence.

    Let’s ignore the ideologies and just teach people how to write. In this article I have
    gathered the best ideas on the subject that I have encountered in my years as a writer and teacher.

    *You don’t learn to write by writing — you learn to write by revising something you
    have written. Write it once, get detailed comments on it, and then write it again. This is
    the fundamental law of writing, from which there is no escape, and my central purpose is
    to make this law intuitive . . . .

    Read the whole thing, it’s only 5 pages

    I just discovered Phil Agre . . . http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_E._Agre
    A list of his publications . . . http://gargasz.info/sociology/index.php/philip-e-agre-list-of-publications/

  • DesertSun59

    I’m guessing that you don’t need a traditional education either. You know the basics like reading, writing and arithmetic. Simply put, the numbers don’t add up in your alternate view of the universe.

    Your view of reality is that I should pay for your emergency care whether I like it or not because you don’t ‘agree’ with the premise of health care insurance industry reform.

    Well, Thebes sums up in a nutshell why this issue is lost on most Americans.

  • Donald Berghuis

    But with your accident, you go to the hospital, spend $100000 of my money that I pay in for routine medical care and you don’t have insurance—then I am paying for you…and that, by your definition, is theft.

  • Anonymous

    Exactly!!
    I just got another color advertising flyer from a hospital. Our medical dollars are going for this crap. Every day I see an advertisement by a hospital touting the hiring of another doctor turned MBA. Doctors should be studying advanced treatments and procedures. Operating on your assets is more profitable than operating on you. Only in America can the medical complex makes us pay for digging our own graves and then sell us the shovel. There is no morality left in America.

  • Donald Berghuis

    I don’t know about your state,Kevin, but in Connecticut where I live, the first thig a police officer asks when you have an accident is “Driver’s licnse, registration,, and INSURANE CARDS” , so yes you are “actually forced to buy car insurance, at least the collision part….you want to pay for your own car’s repairs, that’s up to you, but if you hit e, I want you to pay for my car damage and my injuries.

  • Donald Berghuis

    Come on , Thebes, you are not living in an agrarian culture where everyone worked on the farm or in some small town that your job was in…..I am retired now, but when I was working , I drove 35 miles in and 35 miles back home every working day…..no I wasn’t forced todrive a car, but how else could I have worked and done all the stuff people have to do each day….?

  • Anonymous

    Well sure he would. It’s a bill made for big biz, just that the repubs aren’t allowed to admit it, such is the magic and genius of making Obomba prez.

  • Donald Berghuis

    More money than you and I can count, probably.

  • Donald Berghuis

    Maybe in your dreams, Kevin. Which rethug are you backing for President in 2012—–Palin, RandPaul, or someone I hadn’t even thought sbout…Romney??author of Romneycare….or a sterling character like Newt Gigrich???come on…Republican in the WH? not soon.

  • Anonymous

    The mis-leading headline is a typical political tactic to spin the article to a certain position. Actually a pathetic tactic.

  • Anonymous

    The fact is: Most states show that driving is a PRIVILEGE not a RIGHT. And, in most states, you are required to show “FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY” to prove you can pay for all the damages and injury related to an accident caused by you. So, the state allows you to do this in 2 ways:

    1. You can post a bond with the state for a specified amount, that is held in the event you ever have to pay out for an accident

    OR

    2. You buy auto insurance, at state approved minimums of coverage. Obviously, the route that most people choose, as they don’t have the amounts required to be able to post a bond with the state.

  • Jaimie11

    The Federal Government is constitutionally required to provide for the national defense.

    That is the only damn thing it does of the very, very few things it is required to do, but get in your face, get in your business and private affairs, that it does, and does, and wants to do more of.

  • Jaimie11

    Who is “they”? And whose money do they pay with?

  • Jaimie11

    STEALS, STEALS from the people.

  • Jaimie11

    Yes, and now you have given them permission to steal your money and use it not only to fight those illegal wars, but to fight a war against you personally through inserting itself in your private relationship with your doctor. Why would you trust a corrupt government to treat you fairly when it has demonstrated time and again it is incapable of ethical behavior?

  • Jaimie11

    Well the more you pay the more will be skimmed off the top to line the pockets of the 2% and their lackeys. It’s an unwinnable game and only the starry eyed believe what the politicians whisper in your dear little ear.

  • Jaimie11

    He was talking to individual people, not to corrupt greedy warmongering government. Get it straight. Government is the problem, it won’t, it can’t provide the solution.

  • Jaimie11

    States regulate insurance companies, not the feds. A little constitutional oversight, Shawn?

  • Jaimie11

    Health and medical costs increase mostly due to greed on the part of corporate owners and investors. And due to the legalized fraud perpetrated on the people by the debt based money system which has as one of its primary objectives inflation of your money so that it buys less and less.

  • Jaimie11

    If you can afford health insurance but don’t want to buy it you will be in big trouble with the IRS. Now that is overt coercion if ever I saw it.

  • Jaimie11

    If you can afford health insurance but don’t want to buy it you will be in big trouble with the IRS. Now that is overt coercion if ever I saw it, and fighting the IRS often gets people into prison.

  • Jaimie11

    That’s apparently the purpose of our constantly being told our form of government is a democracy when it is really a democratic republic. In a democracy majority does rule. And manipulating the consent of two opposing parties is far easier than managing multiple factors.

  • Anonymous

    The only way “Obama” could have changed this is if Reid had fixed the filibuster in 2009 in anticipation of the GOP’s obstruction. That he did not ruined everything.

  • Jaimie11

    “I trust our American government to pay my health care bills more then I trust a for profit corporation”

    Pipe dream, Gun. Your corrupt government is OWNED by a consolidation of the corporate owned means of production and distribution, a huge monopoly, that uses the government as a profit making machine sucking out your life’s blood.

    You are little more than a slave to it, an expendable one at that. When the cost of maintaining you becomes greater than the profit to be made on you, poof – you’ll be vanished.

  • Jaimie11

    And the quality of medical care will be reduced. Why would smart, compassionate, persistent, serious people spend all those years in school, postponing social and family life, running up huge student loans, in order to work for government limited incomes, to enact questionable standard of care practices developed by Big Pharma, and give up all their autonomy, their skills and art, to be directed by flow chart diagnostics that limit accurate diagnoses, and to prescribe one-size-fits-all treatments?

  • Anonymous

    It’s nothing of the sort. Contrary to the arrogant Glenn Beck “educated” constitutionalists who believe that constitutional doctrine can be boiled down to a handful of political slogans, the concept of standing is something that judges and lawyers have wrestled with since the time of English common law. The difference between a decision on the merits and one decided on technical grounds may not be readily apparent to a non-lawyer. It’s an easy enough mistake for anyone to make. That said, the denial of standing does provide some indication of which way this judge is leaning on the substantive issues.

  • Anonymous

    Another misleading headline from RS. You’re getting as bad as Drudge. The judge did not uphold health care reform. He did not consider any of the merits of the substantive arguments on either side. He merely found that the plaintiffs did not have standing to bring the suit, based on the documentation they provided. The judge did, in a sense, uphold the government’s position but that was also limited to legal standing.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    I’m about halfway through the first one you gave me. Here are some of my reactions. These are notes to myself, but I will share them and that which comes of them. I will say this much: I believe that structure is the key to understanding, and that a psychology exists surrounding the Big Lie that is operating, as it were, beyond the sound barrier. I wrote a comment over at Veterans Today to a piece by Nila Sagadevan called “9/11 – MISSION ACCOMPLISHED?” in which I expanded upon the idea of the “band gap” that exists in semiconductors. I would ask you to read the comment there under my username, but briefly, ” The “Big Lie”, the “Große Lüge” that Hitler referred to in chapter 10 of Mein Kampf, is noteworthy not because it is a lie, nor because it is bigger than other lies, but because it breaks the lie barrier. Like a plane breaking the sound barrier, it enters into, operates in, a wholly other realm. It is a piece of engineering.”

    That is what enthralls me about the piece you gave me to read. It approaches the matter on a structural basis, but recognizes that it operates in one more dimension than our normal geometry accounts for, and so must use what is to a two dimensional surface, “perspective”. Here are my notes so far.

    "But the most central feature of conservatism is deference"Stockholm syndrome

    "the true goal of conservatism is to establish an aristocracy, which is a social and psychological condition of inequality" psychological condition = Mind Kontrol. This is the key – Bernays, Ewen Cameron, & al.

    "their actual goal, which is simply to be aristocrats"As the goal of a tapeworm is to attach

    "Conservatism is the antithesis of democracy."Democracy is a structural term, etymologically clear about its meaning. Conservatism is a descriptive, rather. Sure, its about conserving something, but also about first acquiring it. What? Privilege.

    "Conservatism constantly changes, always adapting itself to provide the minimum amount of freedom that is required to hold together a dominant coalition in the society."Brilliant!

    "Freedom is impossible unless the common people internalize aristocratic domination."!

    "Conservatism promotes (and so does liberalism, misguidedly) the idea that liberalism is about activist government where conservatism is not."!

    "To impose its order on society, conservatism must destroy civilization."Like the looting of the Baghdad museum

    "The magnitude of the falsehood here is so great that decent people have been set back on their heels."The Große Lüge principle

    "Conservatism continually twists the language of conscience into its opposite. It has no choice: conservatism is unjust, and cannot survive except by pretending to be the opposite of what it is."Tsk!

    "Conservatism frequently attempts to destroy rational thought, for example, by using language in ways that stand just out of reach of rational debate or rebuttal."This is what I want — structural tools

    "The main idea of public relations is the distinction between "messages" and "facts". Messages are the things you want people to believe. A message should be vague enough that it is difficult to refute by rational means."Here again, structure. Cf. slang for vagueness/indeterminacy.

    "Projection was an important part of the Florida election controversy, for example when Republicans tried to get illegal ballots counted and prevent legal ballots from being counted, while claiming that Democrats were trying to steal the election."This is key structure. There’s something here psychological that gets past the mind, in spite of? No! Because of the “odor”, shall we say, of the offense being named, and the untrained mind is, like a color-blind person, unable to notice the transfer. The bluster of the right-winger bumps off the inklings and hunches that come naturally to mind, and essentially disables the defense, like the brief scene of a gloved hand cutting the lights with wire cutters in a TV thriller. Why? Because the gall, daring yes but so low down, means that raising an eyebrow will be insufficient: one must accuse them of an extremely wicked, shameless, and elaborate plan — make a very large investment in conflict in very short order. The natural organic styles of resistance are inadequate.

    The Große Lüge (the “Big Lie”) has clearly matured from a tactic to an article of faith. Their use of it is cultified, in a very nearly Satanic way. They see it as the sacrament of their god.

  • justintime

    When the lie’s so big

    They got lies so big
    They don’t make a noise
    They tell ‘em so well
    Like a secret disease
    That makes you go numb

    With a big ol’ lie
    And a flag and a pie
    And a mom and a bible
    Most folks are just liable
    To buy any line
    Any place, any time

    When the lie’s so big
    As in Robertson’s case,
    (That sinister face
    Behind all the Jesus hurrah)

    Could result in the end
    To a worrisome trend
    In which every American
    Not “born again”
    Could be punished in cruel and unusual ways
    By this treacherous cretin
    Who tells everyone
    That he’s Jesus’ best friend

    When the lie’s so big
    And the fog gets so thick
    And the facts disappear
    The Republican Trick
    Can be played out again
    People, please tell me when
    We’ll be rid of these men!

    Just who do they really
    Suppose that they are?
    And how did they manage to travel as far
    As they seem to have come?
    Were we really that dumb?

    People, wake up
    Figure it out
    Religious fanatics
    Around and about
    The Court House, The State House,
    The Congress, The White House

    Criminal saints
    With a “Heavenly Mission” –
    A nation enraptured
    By pure superstition

    When the lie’s so big
    And the fog gets so thick
    And the facts disappear
    The Republican Trick
    Can be played out again
    People, please tell me when
    We’ll be rid of these men!

    The incomparable Frank Zappa
    live in Barcelona 1988
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBIcxstki1w

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_TTCYMSQW7E5EVBYYMS2YSNCSAM Anonymous

    Just to make sure we’re clear here, when someone shows up in the ER with no insurance, two things happen.

    1.) If you can’t or won’t pay for services, but have a home or anything else of real value, collections agents may sue you for it. You heard me right; if you own a home and wind up in the ER with no insurance, the hospital will have one of the lawyers they keep on retainer take you to court to put a lien on your home, which may then result in foreclosure, depending on the laws of your state. Otherwise they may petition the court to have your wages garnished for the cost. The vast majority of your attending physicians will not have that kind of financial power, but if you will not work with them on making arrangements to pay the cost of care they will send you to an outside collections agency who can then sue you. People with no health insurance, who work for a living, typically want to work with physicians and hospitals about paying their bills, and mutually-acceptable payment arrangements are common. People who are out of work at the time typically go to collections. The rate of recovery in collections is poor for physicians; I can’t speak to how well collections works out for hospitals.

    2. Where “everyone else” gets hit by this is in the medical community’s attempt to recover those lost profits by increasing the price. Because of insurance contracts, this does not, for the most part, work, except against others with no health insurance, or who see physicians and go to hospitals not accepting their insurance. Those insurance contracts include fee schedules, stating how much an insurance company will pay a provider for any given visit or procedure. Those rates are based on Medicare’s pay scale, and are often based on old pay scales (the scale changes every year), such that some insurance companies can wind up paying less than Medicare for services, and Medicare isn’t known for paying well. Insurance companies have sufficient power that providers of care at all levels have little room for negotiation. It is mostly “take what they’re offering, or lose out on the business of the patients.” I’ve personally seen a big hospital change drop an insurance for a time to try to negotiate a more favorable pay rate, and it didn’t work out well for them at all.

    I am in this business, and I am not making this scenario up. I intend no political leaning by it. I just want you to get a peek at what’s going on, day in and day out. I invite you to dig further into it in order to inform your opinion as clearly as possible. It is a fascinating situation, and a provoker of strong feelings in a lot of people.

  • justintime

    I like the Veteran’s Today site and your perceptive comments.
    If you’re not already hip to cognitive linguist George Lakoff, check out:
    http://www.truth-out.org/the-new-centrism-and-its-discontents67155
    And his books: The Political Mind, Moral Politics, Don’t Think of an Elephant!, Whose Freedom? and Thinking Points

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    Lakoff is very insightful. My DFA group did a few sessions on his stuff in ’06. There’s a lot out there, but just the very fact of abstracting the mechanics of it, the structure. In McLuhan’s phrase, The Medium is the Massage. It’s like the difference between the web page and the source code, between the Matrix and reality. Getting people to unplug from the content so they can look at it for the artifice that it is, that is the all-important Rubicon to cross. Get off the limb before you saw it off.

  • http://proudprimate.com Proud Primate

    Raising his lonely mental floss. Ah, indeed, one of a kind.

    My sig line is Machiavelli: “E sono tanto semplice li uomini e tanto obediscano a la necessità presenti che colui che inganna troverà sempre chi si lascerà ingannare.” (“And they are so simple, the people, and so obedient to the present necessity that whosoever would deceive always finds him who will let himself be deceived.”)

  • Shawn Rosvold

    The point is that the for the greater public good, a requirement to have insurance is necessary. Forgetting that national health insurance is the right thing to do for a moment, it’s cheaper to provide everyone with health care so that illnesses do not become more serious and costly. When that happens, we all pay, whether there’s a national health care plan or not.

    Here’s the bottom line: if you want affordable health care, cut out the middle man. The insurance companies are raking in billions by not providing health care. The current compromise is just that, a compromise. If the legislation had passed as originally written then we’d all be paying less. I am from Canada originally and I know that their system works. I’d be happy to answer any honest questions if you have any. I won’t respond to right wing flames.

  • Jaimie11

    The point is that the states can mandate citizens purchase insurance, that is in keeping with the Constitution. The federal government may not do that except in certain instances. And even if you believe it should have that power in this case, you’re sadly mistaken if you believe health care will be improved, cost controlled, or even extended to all who need it. The government is too corrupt to fulfill your expectations.

    As for your second point, you won’t be cutting out the middle man, he will just be hidden from view. And Canada’s budget is stressed at the seams meaning that adjustments to restrict access will have to be implemented.

    I have many contacts in Canada through my role as an advocate for a particular orphan disease, and I am well aware of the disparities between access in the various provinces,
    and extended wait times for services, six months in many cases, and in some, no services at all.

    Recently the husband of a friend of mine suffered a surprise heart attack and was taken to hospital. He was told he would have to go home and wait for an angioplasty in about six months. It was not until a doctor walked into his room, a neighbor by lucky coincidence,
    who ordered the angioplasty to be done immediately. He is now fully recovered and back to normal, back at work productive, far fewer than six months after the procedure.

  • Shawn Rosvold

    And your question is?

  • Jaimie11

    Why are you willing to trust a government that persistently reveals itself to be corrupt and unprincipled to manage your health care?

  • Anonymous

    I don’t know why people can’t understand this, it looks like something Bush admin would have came up with and all these people would be up in arms if it was Bush.

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