The Lovecraftian World of Obamacare

Facts are easy. You can check facts. But supporters of the health law are warping reality to such a debauched degree it looks like something out of a tale by H.P. Lovecraft.

CthulhuH.P. LovecraftObamacare’s conservative critics sure know how to make themselves look out of touch. From Sarah Palin’s 2009 warning about “death panels” to last week’s headlines that a new CBO report said the Affordable Care Act would kill more than two million jobs, the law’s critics keep telling whoppers.

Say this much for the critics, though: At least they’re just bungling the facts.

Facts are easy. You can check facts. What supporters of the law are doing, on the other hand, transcends factual bungling. It’s far more advanced: a warping of reality so debauched it looks like something out of a tale by H.P. Lovecraft.

Christina and Timothy Sandefur offer a perfect example in the latest issue of Regulation magazine. The fine levied for failing to purchase insurance, they note, is a “penalty that’s a tax but doesn’t raise revenue.”

Cast your mind back to those halcyon days of yore, when the law was first being debated. Democrats were keen to insist, as President Obama did in an interview with George Stephanopoulous, that the penalty was “absolutely not a tax increase.” On the other hand, the law’s proponents worried the Supreme Court would not buy the line that Congress had the power to impose the levy under the Commerce Clause. (They were right about that.)

So they came up with the bright idea of calling the penalty an “excise tax on individuals without essential health benefits coverage.” That was pretty sketchy, since an excise tax applies to the purchase of goods, not to individuals who haven’t bought a good. But it worked: In 2012 the Supreme Court’s majority rescued Obamacare by agreeing to call the penalty a tax.

At the same time, the Court also insisted that the penalty was not a tax. This was the only way to get around the Anti-Injunction Act, which generally requires someone to pay a tax before he can challenge the collection of it. Since the mandate penalties originally did not kick in until 2014, that would have prevented the Court from ruling on the law’s merits until much later.

But wait, there’s more!

The Constitution says “all bills for raising revenue” must originate in the House of Representatives. But the ACA originated in the Senate, when Majority Leader Harry Reid took a House-passed measure, deleted its text, and substituted what became the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for the original bill.

The Pacific Legal Foundation is challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare on Origination-Clause grounds. In response, the Obama administration claims the ACA not only originated in the House, but also that it is — wait for it! — “not a ‘Bill for raising Revenue.’ ”

So is the penalty a tax or not? Answer: Pick a color between one and 10.

And this is only the beginning. Consider the ACA’s other controversial mandate — the contraception mandate, now being challenged by (among others) Hobby Lobby, a company called Conestoga Woods, and Little Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic charity. They do not want to be forced to provide or arrange for contraception, which violates their religious beliefs.

In response, Obamacare defenders could simply say that life is full of trade-offs, and ensuring access to free contraception is more important than religious liberty. Instead, they want to claim both sides of the argument by insisting that those who object to the mandate are the ones violating religious freedom. Not buying your employees contraception, their argument goes, violates the employees’ freedom of religion. How? Because, um … hey, look, a squirrel!

The other day The New York Times took this absurdity another step further. The paper argued — you might want to grab a chair — that not forcing companies to furnish contraceptives for their employees violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

Moving on: The Affordable Care Act says people who qualify can obtain subsidies to buy insurance through an exchange “established by the state.” Thirty-four states have no exchange of their own; they have exchanges established by Washington. This means the people of those states are ineligible for subsidies. According to the law’s defenders, though, the language of the law does not say what it says, because we all know what Congress really meant. Or something like that.

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  • sarcasmic||

    Don't blame me. I voted for Cthulhu.

  • Bryan C||

    But Azathoth won.

  • sarcasmic||

    I can always accurately guess the outcome of an election by taking the inverse of my ballot.

  • Azathoth!!||

    I did?

    Maybe that's where my exclamation points came from.

    So how do we get the shoggoth out of the white house then?

    And her mate.

  • Riven||

    Only because Nyarlathotep split the vote

  • WTF||

    Why vote for the lesser evil?

  • Agammamon||

    Vote for Cthulhu 2016 - He promises to eat you *first*.

  • Azathoth!!||

    You know, a bunch of us were talking about this 'eat you first' thing during a lull in the piping, and we really don't understand where it comes from.

    There's an issue of scale to be considered.

    You're all quite tiny. Just noticing you is difficult. Eating you would be like making a meal of dust mites--it might alleviate the dust bunny problem somewhat, but it would hardly be filling.

    Inhaled might be a better word.

  • newshutz||

    You will develop an allery

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Well, sure, when you put all these things together in one article, it looks really bad. But at least the bill was posted for five days of public comment before it was signed into law.

  • Wandering Texan||

    I get a headache whenever someone references the laughably short amount of time this bill was considered. I'm not convinced that we have a clear picture of the damn thing now, even as its being implemented.

  • Agammamon||

    we don't. That's why this administration has to (illegally) keep tweaking the law. As each requirement comes up, and they finally understand the effect it will have, they change implementation dates or just flat-out offer money to people the law forbids, or offers exemptions to 'needy' industries.

  • Wandering Texan||

    Not enough aspirin in the world today...

  • John||

    So you are telling me that this time we actually did vote for Cthulhu?

  • SugarFree||

    That drawing of Cthulhu taking a dump is really disturbing.

  • Tonio||

    This from the master of disturbing.

    HPL wasn't much of an artist, but I'm glad we do have that visual representation.

  • SugarFree||

    The Elder Gods are waiting for the stars to be right to build a bidet.

  • Tonio||

    Dammit, Sug, now there is an unsavory mixture of coffee and saliva all over my monitor and keyboard.

  • SugarFree||

    unsavory mixture of coffee and saliva

    Toniotorum.

  • Tonio||

    Heh. Thanks.

    I take my coffee with lots of (real) milk and sugar if that helps the image.

  • Dweebston||

    Cue graphic paragraphs by Sugarfree (or whoever's the lactose intolerant poster) describing the horrors of consuming dairy.

  • Lord Peter Wimsey||

    This was my first thought as well! I wonder what Lovecraft would have thought of that drawing, given that he had a morbid fear of some bodily functions that was only exceeded by his fear of immigrants and foreigners.

    I just reread "THE WHISPERER IN DARKNESS" and watched the movie on FANDOR. The former is excellent and the latter very good.

  • Tonio||

    That's a good observation, your lordship. Unfortunate coincidence or unconscious misfortune? There's a PhD thesis right there.

  • Loki||

    Elder Gods have to shit too.

  • Tonio||

    Citation needed?

  • Loki||

    They eat don't they? Anything that eats shits. Or as Uhura said in ST6: "The thing's gotta have a tailpipe."

  • Agammamon||

    They're not even made of matter, as we understand the term.

  • Juice||

    Anything that eats shits.

    Not Meatwad.

  • John||

    Isn't Chtulhu a priest and not actual one of the old ones? Or have I confused my Lovecraft mythology?

  • UnCivilServant||

    Various apochypha published after his demise might have muddied the already unclear waters a bit. I still class him as a great old one.

  • John||

    That sounds like we are talking about whether he belongs in the baseball hall of fame or something. Funny.

    He isn't human whatever he is. Thanks.

  • Loki||

    I thought he was one of the old ones, but I'm note that read up on Lovecraft, to be honest.

  • SugarFree||

    Cthulhu is a Great Old One, one of the many immortal aliens of immense power that have been imprisoned on Earth or in a dimension with a connection to the Earth.

  • Wandering Texan||

    You might be mixing him up with Nyarlathotep.

  • John||

    Yes. I am. Been a while since I read that stuff.

  • Riven||

    He was an old one (or at least a highly respected agent of the old ones) when I started reading. I suppose that's what he'll always be to me.

    But I'm a romantic.

  • Brandybuck||

    Elder Gods have to shit too.


    Boethiah, Prince of Plots, tricked Trinimac to go into his mouth. Boethiah talked like Trinimac for awhile then, and gathered enough people to listen to him. Boethiah showed them the lies of the et'Ada, and told them Trinimac was the biggest liar of all. Then Boethiah relieved himself of Trinimac right there on the ground before them to prove all the things he said were the truth. His people rubbed his soil on their faces and became the Dunmer. The Pariah People fled and became the Orsimer, and worshipped the dung they called Malacath.

  • John||

    No Sugar Free. That is a cake he is farting into. Reason put it up just for you.

  • SugarFree||

    Where are the sprinkles, smart guy?

  • John||

    This is a PG 13 website. They can't show that.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Sebelius R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn

  • Tonio||

    Heh.

  • Tony||

    Yeah throw stones about fantasy worlds, libertarian. There really isn't any net loss of freedom going from the pre-ACA world to the ACA world. We already had universal single-payer socialist red commie healthcare for old and poor people, for the love of fuck. Maybe we would have had flying cars by now without them (fueled by burning the corpses of the old and poor, perhaps), but it didn't exactly bring about a mass feeling of oppression. Life is short. Be less whiny.

  • ||

    I see you are completely out of ammo and have resorted to flinging poo, loser.

  • Tonio||

    Better response to Tony, PB, et als:

  • WTF||

    'Tony' must have new puppeteers. His idiotic poo-flinging is getting worse than shreek.

  • John||

    Even Tony doesn't have anything left to say on this. Normally Tony at least gets the talking points right. Shreek is too stupid to even do that. But here, there are no talking points left so Tony is left sounding like Shreek.

    Throw in a couple of Christfags and you would think that Shreek had hijacked Tony's account.

  • Tony||

    Well it's quite a bit simpler when the sum total of your political worldview consists of being against whatever the president does. I don't have anything left to say? When have you ever had anything to say about healthcare reform?

  • Michael S. Langston||

    2 million and counting lost jobs.

    9 million and counting lost insurance plans.

    Other tens of millions (when employers are required to comply) soon to have worse insurance and higher rates.

    And this is all pro-freedom, huh? Nothing at all lost - nothing at all to see.

    Up next - the claim that smokers can be ticketed/jailed due to the cost the inflict on taxpayers through healthcare.

  • Free Society||

    When have you had anything to say about reform? Further politicization of the healthcare industry isn't reform, it's an expansion of current trends.

  • Alan||

    Actually he's right for once. The U.S. already did have socialized medicine - just a really inefficient and byzantine sort of socialized medicine that didn't cover everyone. Prior to Obamacare, Americans spent more public money on healthcare, per capita (and presumably in total) than any other country in the world. Then we paid that much again in private money for healthcare - and people who ran into major health problems were still going bankrupt in order to deal with their bills.

    Obamacare is a mess to be sure, but it has a few redeeming features. If it can eventually reduce some of the protectionist and cost-increasing features of our healthcare system, it might even be worth doing. As screwy as it is, it might even simplify things in the long term.

  • newshutz||

    Big IF there, Alan

    so far PPACA has increased cronyism, complexity, and cost

  • WTF||

    First off, the retarded don't rule the night. They don't rule it. Nobody does. And they don't run in packs. And while they may not be as strong as apes, don't lock eyes with 'em, don't do it. Puts 'em on edge. They might go into berzerker mode; come at you like a whirling dervish, all fists and elbows. You might be screaming "No, no, no" and all they hear is "Who wants cake?" Let me tell you something: They all do. They all want cake.

  • Agammamon||

    Who wants cake - the faces in my French fries keep screaming WHO WANTS CAKE!

  • kevrob||

    WTF is Wilfred Brimley and I demand my £5.

    Kevin R

  • sarcasmic||

    There really isn't any net loss of freedom going from the pre-ACA world to the ACA world.

    Yeah. Except for the freedom to not purchase insurance, or the freedom to purchase insurance that doesn't cover things you don't think you need, or the freedom to be an employer and not provide health insurance...

    but it didn't exactly bring about a mass feeling of oppression

    Die strawman! Die! Die motherfucker! Die!

  • ||

    Somehow Tony thinks NOT paying for other people's contraceptive coverage abridges their religious rfreedom, but forcing them to pay for maternity coverage doesn't.

  • sarcasmic||

    Tony has expressed more than once his belief that libertarians wish to impose liberty on society.

    That's right. He used the word impose.

    Because true freedom for Tony means asking permission and obeying orders. That way he's free from responsibility, and to him that's the only freedom that matters.

  • WTF||

    "And if liberty is to be attributable of the real man and not of the scarecrow invented by the individualistic Liberalism, then Fascism is for liberty. It is the only kind of liberty that is serious — the liberty of the State."
    Benito Mussolini

    Not surprising 'Tony' agrees with this.

  • Free Society||

    Progressives are fascists. They are direct ideological descendants of fascists. But they'll deny it tooth and nail. But what are the differences, really?

    If ideologies were people, then basically Mr Fascist raped Ms Modern Liberal and she birthed an ugly baby named Progressivism.

  • Loki||

    But without that mandatory maternity coverage you might get hit by a bus causing your wife to become pregnant!

  • DarrenM||

    Anything that requires a person to do something he doesn't want to do (like work) is anti-freedom. So, we must take wealth from those who have the most, because they won't miss it (much), and give that wealth to those who have little. This increases freedom for the many at a slight expense of the few. Whether that makes sense is irrelevant.

  • Tony||

    In what way are you not free to forgo purchasing insurance? Nobody's going to jail for failing to buy or provide adequate insurance. If the death of freedom comes in the form of tax code incentives to increase access to health insurance, then the world must be nearly perfect and you must be extremely bored to be bitching so much.

  • Jordan||

    In what way are you not free to forgo purchasing insurance?

    Can you try to go one day without being intentionally dishonest?

    If the death of freedom comes in the form of tax code incentives to increase access to health insurance, then the world must be nearly perfect and you must be extremely bored to be bitching so much.

    I hope that strawman has access to health insurance.

  • newshutz||

    The deductible on burn treatments is a bitch

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Runless yearner illuminate chasten atmosphere weed samaritan.

  • SForza||

    I've seen a bunch of posts like this from you, but have yet to figure them out. Hint?

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Replies to Tony.

    Random words out of the dictionary make as much sense as he does.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Tony, the law contains many provisions other than just the individual mandate. These provisions restrict what kind of insurance providers can offer, to whom and for how much(which, of course works in the other direction for consumers). It imposes taxes on certain things, and mandates certain employers do certain things. So again, you just seem to be being disingenuous to say what you are saying.

    BTW-the individual mandate itself can not be waved off with a 'well, it is not criminally enforced.' If a 600 dollar tax were put on abortion services I would find that appalling and not say 'well, it is just a tax code, no imposition on choice there!'

  • Tony||

    If these things are unacceptable then it's hard to imagine any form of healthcare reform (that actually increases access) that would be acceptable to you. It matters more what the regulations do than that there are regulations at all. So if real burdens were being placed on people, as in your abortion example, I'd agree that the law was ill-advised. But the regulations aim to incentivize increased access to better-quality health insurance than was available before to some people. I don't know how you'd do that without some mandating and some regulating.

    Of course you know I'd prefer a much bigger overhaul of the system, and putting aside the all-important fact of what votes could be had in Congress, we might as well have done so, since the reaction of opponents couldn't have possibly been any more hysterical.

  • ||

    It matters more what the regulations do than that there are regulations at all.

    In other words, the end justifies the means.

  • ||

    Except it didn't increase access. Fuck, it didn't even increase access to insurance.

    And hows doubling my monthly premiums for a real burden? Asshole.

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    But the regulations aim to incentivize increased access to better-quality health insurance than was available before to some people. I don't know how you'd do that without some mandating and some regulating.

    You could skip it and adopt the Singapore model. It's basically mandatory HSAs and subsidies for the poor. No insurance, no single payer, and no price fixing.

    They have the best health outcomes in the world, at a fraction of the cost of other countries, including Europe. And, the poor get medicine. And, that's all the matters, right?

    I expect you to start advocating the Singapore model any day now.

  • WTF||

    Forget about the penaltax enforced by men with guns and threats of jail for failure to pay it.
    You really are a completely dishonest moron.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    You are right, but what is far worse in my opinion is pretending like the only provision in the thousand page ACA is the penaltax.

  • WTF||

    Oh, agreed.

  • Loki||

    Riiiight, because nobody's freedom is really infringed upon until they're locked in a cage. Sure.

  • sarcasmic||

    As long as Tony keeps moving the goalposts he can't lose!

  • Loki||

    If someone does end up in prison for failure to pay the penaltax it'll be "No one was executed, so no loss of freedom! Stop whining!"

  • ||

    Tonio made this exact argument wrt to religious exemptions from the employer mandate just the other day.

  • Tonio||

    Uh, no, I didn't, AM. I said that there were degrees of opression. And I provided some examples.

  • ||

    I said that there were degrees of opression. And I provided some examples.

    Yes, you used as an example the Little Sisters of Charity and said that because they were not being locked up in jail for failing to comply with the employer mandate, they should stop whining. You were pretty proud of it at the time, don't shy away from it now.

  • Tonio||

    You mean here, when I posted this?

    Tonio|2.7.14 @ 9:26AM|#

    Yes, because that's exactly like forbidding the exercise, even privately, of any religion other than the state religion. Because requiring that religious organizations play by the same rules as everyone else is exactly like executing apostates.

    The whole contraceptive mandate is debatable, but conflating that with outright bans is dishonest and unhelpful.
  • Michael S. Langston||

    So what if it's not thhe same as executing apostates - either in this country people are free to believe what they wish, and as a result implement policies in their lives/businesses/non-profits which match those beliefs - then anything preventing that is wrong.

    So arguing which oppression hurts more then is dishonest and unhelpful.

    Q) Is it oppression?
    A) Yes?
    Q) Do we believe in a free society?
    A) TBD

    But if the second answer is, as it once was, a resounding yes, then trying to say that oppression isn't anything compared to this other oppression is obfuscation at best.

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    Nobody's going to jail...

    Again, wow: those are high standards.

  • Free Society||

    In what way are you not free to forgo purchasing insurance?

    Tony, for the sake of argument, please prove us all wrong by not buying health insurance and not paying the fine. Methinks we won't be hearing from you again for 5-10 years.

  • Lord Peter Wimsey||

    It's funny when liberals and conservatives call libertarians whiney. We are the least whiney (but most snarky) people around. In fact, we suffer greatly listening to Team Red and Team Blue constantly whine, even though they pretty much control everything.

    But yeah, Tony, no net loss of freedom. No net loss of money. Just a Brave New World that only racists would deny us all.

  • Lord Humungus||

    *blah blah blah*

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Tony, this strikes me as disingenuous, as you surely know that this law has a lot of regulations and such related to groups other than the old and the poor.

  • sarcasmic||

    Tony being disingenuous? I never!

  • WTF||

    Yeah, let me put on my shocked face.

  • Dweebston||

    Don't you people see? The intentions were good! They were so good.

  • Dweebston||

    And why are you still around? We're already living in your world, Tony. Your party passed this law, it has their fingerprints (and your spittle) all over it. It's a done deal, besides all of the swollen bits your administration continues hammering out (or avoiding looking at). Why bother continuing to salivate over it?

    You're worried, aren't you? Does posting apologias here assuage your conscience?

  • Tonio||

    Damn, that was good, Dweebston.

  • Tony||

    I'm just here to argue.

  • WhatAboutBob||

    I'm just here to argue dishonestly.

    I finished that sentence for you.

  • OneOut||

    Tony

    "I'm just here to argue"

    I am new here. Maybe that is what made me realize this sooner than some others who have been here for some time.

    You like to argue. To you it is just intellectual stimulation. I get that. You think you are sharpening your mind by sparing with some of the smarter people on board here.

    But can you not do so honestly ? What do you gain by just making up indefensible positions and making indefensible statements such as, "no net loss of freedoms".

    Does trying to defend that ignorance make you think you will be a better lawyer some day ? Maybe so ? I don't know.

    Perhaps you can enlighten us one day with the truth.

    Anyway. If I ever get caught with my dick in a hooker and a joint in my mouth I will call you for I know you have had plenty of practice defending the indefensible.

  • Daniel Lemke||

    Hilarious.

  • Tony||

    I don't get why that's automatically indefensible. It's actually the claim I'm making, and I'm defending it by saying that the status quo prior to the ACA wasn't vastly more free than post-ACA. There was actually a healthcare cost and access problem country in this problem, which is why it's been a political issue for decades. Post-ACA we have definite increases in freedom (take the preexisting conditions bit, just for one). I count expanded Medicaid as an increase in freedom--but I get that we probably fundamentally disagree here, because libertarians tend to see being taxed $0.10 as a bigger imposition than going bankrupt on medical costs.

    I don't think that's necessarily totally indefensible, but it doesn't really make any sense either.

  • LynchPin1477||

    I farted while reading this.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    Hemingway, jackassery rebound bounty hunter storyteller muddler was.

  • Dweebston||

    Well a very, very heavay, a heavy drit, burtation tonight—we had a very dairse Darrison… but let's go ahead tearis tasin losh clabitte behend the pet.

  • Bryan C||

    So to sum up your argument, the giant law that you guys never read and keep running away from really does nothing new at all, but opposing it is bad because getting rid of the giant law that obviously changes nothing would totally ruin everything, so we all need to just stop whining about our crazy fantasies where freedom is important because old poor people don't need freedom so what makes you so special and besides it's always been that way because the giant law we cannot change didn't do anything.

    Thanks, Tony. I never thought of it that way.

  • James Taggart||

    You should write speeches for Nancy Pelosi.

  • ||

    There really isn't any net loss of freedom going from the pre-ACA world to the ACA world.

    What idiocy! No 'net' loss, huh? So just a gross loss of freedom then, eh? The whole bill is a freedom default swap.

    but it didn't exactly bring about a mass feeling of oppression.

    So... success!

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    but it didn't exactly bring about a mass feeling of oppression.

    Those are high standards.

    Americans' Belief That Gov't Is Too Powerful at Record Level.

  • Ken Shultz||

    For most people, what they believe is just not a function of the facts; the facts we believe, for most of us, are a function of our preconceived conclusions.

    Hate to say that I see that in comments sometimes. Hell, I'm susceptible to it myself!

    A lot of people believed certain "facts" about Iraq because they wanted to go to war. A lot of people believe certain "facts" about global warming because they're hostile to capitalism; actually, there's more than enough of that going around with climate change skeptics, too. A lot of people believe certain "facts" about Iran because they don't want to go to war...

    This is the stuff that noble lies are made of. This is how Jane Fonda ended up vouching for the good treatment of tortured American POWs. If you believe we shouldn't be fighting the war in Vietnam bad enough, you can make yourself see any fact you want to see to support that position.

    For most people, whether you like ObamaCare or don't determines which "facts" they believe. Show me somebody that recognizes facts that contradict their preferred position, and I'll show you someone worth talking to.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    We are all guilty of this here, particularly with the Cop Shoots X stories. Both from the writer's perspective and the commenter's. We'll tear other articles to ribbons for their inaccuracies yet assume any article about a dirty pig is completely accurate. I do it too, and shouldn't.

    I started coming here because of Reason's objectivity compared to other places. I'd like to see a bit more of it.

  • sssbobbyr||

    "I started coming here because of Reason's objectivity compared to other places. I'd like to see a bit more of it."

    I concur.

  • John||

    Everyone does. You just have to try your best to avoid it. If you do occasionally see how the other side has a point, you are probably doing well.

    I am as anti-cop as anyone. But I have on several occasions defended the police on here. Sometimes, in fact a lot of times, the cop is right. The facts are what they are even when they don't fit your preferred narrative.

  • The Last American Hero||

    Except there's only 2 breeds of pigs - the sadistic power tripping kind that abuse the powers entrusted to them by society and the kind that looks the other way when the sadistic power tripping kind abuse the powers entrusted to them by society.

    I'll change my position when I see the latter hold the former to account.

  • ||

    99% of cops give the rest a bad name.

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    +1%

  • LynchPin1477||

    At least the commentariat here calls B.S. when they see it. I wish there were more people who held opposite opinions (like Tony) but actually argued in good faith and came up with meaningful criticisms (not like Tony).

  • John||

    The problem is that the left has gone so batshit insane, I am not sure there is any reasonable way to defend them.

    There are lots of ways to criticize Republicans and the board does so in spades. But defending the left, without resorting to lying, false equivalence, ad hominen, or concern trolling is pretty damned difficult these days.

    In fairness, Tony does about as good of a job as anyone could do. The positions he defends really are just that indefensible.

  • Tony||

    What was that, torture lover?

  • ||

    It's okay when Obama does it.

  • Tony||

    It's okay that Bush did it because I just pulled the lie out of my ass that Obama does it too.

  • OneOut||

    He is using Reason to practice being a lawyer.

    You wish to be a trial lawyer, don't you Tony ?

    I would hire him. If I got caught in a absolutely indefensible situation, I would hire Tony.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I agree Lynch. In addition to the objectivity of the coverage, the commenters here are smarter than you'll find elsewhere, and I learn stuff from people here. Participating in this forum has made me smarter and more knowledgeable than I would have been otherwise. ...and I learn very little from people who I already agree with.

  • Deli-bro||

    In response to Ken: The problem isn't so much cherry-picking facts that fit your world-view as you say, but conflating perceptions, predictions, opinions, and other non-fact assertions with facts.

    Most people (this is my opinion, not a fact), cannot tell the difference between fact and non-fact. I'll take some of your examples to show you what I mean.

    Concerning Iraq, I don't think anyone outside of the top echelons of power had any hard facts on WMDs in Iraq. Many citizens trusted their government to not lie to them about it though, so took it as fact that there were WMDs in Iraq and that we should go to war.

    Concerning Jane Fonda, her opinion was that POWs were treated well. That is a subjective, qualitative claim. An outrageous one to most people certainly, but it can't be stated as fact that POWs were treated poorly either. From what I understand of what happened, I think the Vietcong knew that an influential person was visiting and didn't show her the worst of what was going on, similar to the Potemkin villages of early communist Russia.

  • Brian||

    This is why I like freedom.

    If a group of people want to get together and create their own socialist utopia, go for it. If the facts as they see it indicate that Communism really never got a fair shot, go ahead and do it, with a bunch of people who agree. And, let us see the results. Consider it a fact-finding venture for everyone.

    Sure, people an hurt and damage others. So, any system should be oriented around dealing with that. I'm not harming anyone by not joining their communist commune.

    It's when the guns come out and people start mandating that we're all in this together, that's my problem.

    Society ceases to be a place where people can experiment and try new things, and becomes a place where rulers pretend that they have the complexity of humanity all figured out.

    That's why so many status quo defenders spend so much time whining as if the system handed down to us by elites is "the bestest best system we've ever come up with!"

    If it's so great, why the guns?

  • Deli-bro||

    I agree completely. Not sure if you have read it before or not, but The Law by Frederic Bastiat is an excellent portrayal of that line of thinking.

    I'm a young guy living in Massachusetts, so almost all of my acquaintances are left-leaning to some degree. Many of them don't even realize that government is essentially the monopoly of legitimate force and coercion. It seems obvious, but once I point that out and walk them through what that means, many people I talk to become at least sympathetic to libertarianism.

    The difficulty in explaining the out-of-control scope of our government is that police don't execute people for not wearing seatbelts. The key for us, as libtertarians, is to point out that that $50 dollar ticket comes with the implied threat of force. If you refuse to pay up, the government will arrest you. If you resist, physical, and potentially lethal, force will be used.

    Anytime I discuss the merits of government policy with someone, I try to say "Is this worth killing people over?"

  • Alan||

    Well said. I see a lot of problems with Obamacare, but some of the complaints are clearly overblown - as if Americans weren't already paying more public money for healthcare (per capita) than any other nation in the world, and still running the risk of going bankrupt due to the cost of medical care.

    Some of the proposed reforms are good ones - like requiring hospitals to publish prices so patients can shop around for the best price. It might be worthwhile to work on the best reforms rather than just complaining about it.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    some of the complaints are clearly overblown

    Name one overblown complaint please - as from where I sit, the complaints are often nor loud enough.

    How much should one complain when the government attempts to and is moving towards nationalizing 16% of the economy?

    & exactly how does a government go bankrupt on healthcare costs if they don't provide health care benefits as it is absolutely not true that healthcare was destined to bankrupt the entire government.

    It's the government's and voters' absolute refusal to spend within reality that will bankrupt the government.

    You can blame healthcare all you want - but if this government wasn't blowing billions on healthcare, they would blow it someplace else and our bankruptcy would still be on the horizon (eg see many local governments going bankrupt for pension problems).

    Sorry, but gross reduction in freedoms, gross increase in healthcare costs, gross decrease in people with insurance, gross decrease in overall job market, and more pain to come cannot have any overblown complaints.

    & wait until they start wanting to outlaw smoking and such due to the "cost to healthcare".

    Don't believe me? Would you have believed 20 years ago a state could outlaw a specific size of soda for the same reason?

  • ||

    Isn’t it wonderful that those who could work will choose not to so they can reap benefits from the shrinking cohort of the employed? Obamacare is liberating people from the tyranny of gainful employment! What could be better?

    It's almost like Democrats don't care about getting the votes of the 53% of Americans have to pay taxes to support this shit.

    It's like Romney in negative.

  • WTF||

    They figure there are enough guilty liberals in that 53% to carry them over the finish line.

  • James Taggart||

    So far, election outcomes have supported that point of view.

  • Agammamon||

    Weirdly enough - they *don't have to worry.
    They figure they'll get that 47% *and* up to 10% of the 'net taxpayer' group simply because, for some reason, ultra-rich liberals will keep supporting them no matter how much of their substance gets eaten away.

  • Loki||

    ultra-rich liberals will keep supporting them no matter how much of their substance gets eaten away.

    That's because for ultra-rich liberals, being a left wing proggie douche is all about teh feelz. It feelz good to "care" so much about the poor that you're willing to vote for someone who will take from them and give to the poor the state to set up idiotic government programs to "help" the poor so that they don't have to lift a Goddamned finger themselves.

    Afterall, if they had to give to charities or worse, volunteer somewhere, they might actually end up coming into contact with some dirty poor person. Basically voting for progs allows them to assuage their guilty consciences and pat themselves on the back for being so "caring" without having to break a sweat. Because sweating is icky and "working class." Limousine liberals are some of the worst people in the world.

  • ||

    I wish those ultra-rich liberals would have some compassion for the people in the second and third quintiles who are trying to do things like save for a down payment, save for retirement, and build their net worth.

    Just because you're making above the median income does not mean you are a bottomless money pit with no human aspirations worth recognizing.

  • Alan||

    They know that people in the second and third quintiles are trying to save money and become rich. That's exactly why they favor policies that will prevent the second and third quintiles from upstaging the first quintile.

  • Brian||

    that, and ultra-rich people live in a democracy that engages in class warfare all the time, and offers opportunities to socialize their risk and privatize their profits.

    Therefore, it makes sense, from a PR perspective and a political perspective, to go along with the system. That way, they appear compassionate and caring to the pleebs, while greasing the palms of the politically powerful, so they use the system to their own advantage.

    All of these rich people have PR advisors that tell them exactly what to say in public. They're not going to go against it and affect their livelihoods, just to stand up for ideals (if they have any).

    Furthermore, the value of money has diminishing returns. A middle class person paying 25-35% in taxes has their options much more limited than an incredibly wealthy person paying 45-65%. They can consider it the cost of doing business.

  • ||

    They figure they'll get that 47% *and* up to 10% of the 'net taxpayer' group simply because, for some reason, ultra-rich liberals will keep supporting them no matter how much of their substance gets eaten away.

    They don't need anywhere near that much if a meaningful percentage of the productive in this country turn away in revulsion and don't vote.

  • Sevo||

    "From Sarah Palin’s 2009 warning about “death panels” to last week’s headlines that a new CBO report said the Affordable Care Act would kill more than two million jobs, the law’s critics keep telling whoppers."

    Well, they won't be "death panels" since that name is toxic, but there will be death panels.
    And is doesn't the CBO report make that claim?
    I'm confused here.

  • John||

    This whole article is one of those "liberals have really fucked up but I need to make sure I talk about how horrible the Republicans are so my Prog friends will still like me" articles Reason does about every week.

    Hinkle has one paragraph rightly pointing out how rediculous liberals were to claim people working less and leaving the work force really is different than Obamacare destroying jobs. Then in the next paragraph he says Conservatives were wrong to say it was destroying jobs. If conservatives are wrong, then the liberals have a point. They both can't be wrong here.

    And yeah, I would say Palin's prediction has been borne out in spades. Why Hinkle feels to need to pretend it hasn't is beyond me, expect to say that he really is worried his Prog friends might not like him for being mean to them.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "but I need to make sure I talk about how horrible the Republicans are so my Prog friends will still like me"

    Or maybe it is motivated by the fact that to a libertarian Republicans are also statists?

  • John||

    Or maybe you are a moron who can't understand why the arguments he makes don't make any sense?

    Or is that you understand fully, can't really defend them, so you just make an assertion with a buzz work like "statist" and hope you can change the subject and concern troll the thread?

    I am betting on option number two. If you think Hinkle's criticisms make sense, tell us why. If you can't do that, concern troll elsewhere and please let people have something relevant to say do so.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    You seem to have this general idea that when libertarians take a moment to criticize Republicans they are doing it to please some liberal cocktail party throwing elites rather than that most libertarians are not going to like Republicans much either since they are pretty statist themselves. It's silly.

  • John||

    Again, I point out above why Hinle's criticisms don't make sense. If you can tell why that is not the case, do so.

    Your opinions of my opinions of Reason are not relevant to the discussion and your posting them is just you shitting on the thread because it makes a point you don't like but can't respond to.

    I don't give a fuck what you think about my opinions. I am, however, willing to listen to what you have to say about the article and specifically Hinkle's claims in it. If you are not bright enough to do that, then you are wasting both of our times. So again, please stop throwing shit in an attempt to obscure a point you don't like.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Hinckle is specifically saying the claims based on the recent CBO were less than accurate or exaggerated while elsewhere he says the Democrats were wrong to claim there was no effect of hours or jobs being cut back. Those two statements are not in contradiction.

    But more to the point, I like Hinkle's regular posts here. He seems to consistently come down on the libertarian side and against statism, and, unlike yourself, does not argue for the necessity of the state to take my money for the education of other people's children or to foster marriage or worse, to engage in nation building half way across the world. So I am afraid when I see you accusing him of bias because he criticized something Team Red said I think that says more about you than him.

  • ||

    I like Hinkle's regular posts here

    Oh c'mon. Hinkle is almost as bad as Nick's butt buddy from OCR who deals much more in rhetorical flourish than in making coherent arguments.

    To John's point, you can't have it both ways. Personally, I side with those who reject the "job killing" claims related to management of health care benefits. "job killing" is an Employer, not Employee, action.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Again, I think Hinckle is truer to libertarianism than John is.

    As to your specific point, I think what Hinckle is saying is that 1. liberals who claim the ACA will not result in cut hours and jobs are wrong and 2. conservatives misrepresented or at least exaggerated the specific claims of the recent CBO announcement. Both of those can be true.

  • John||

    2. conservatives misrepresented or at least exaggerated the specific claims of the recent CBO announcement.

    Damn you are mendacious. That sounds good until you consider why Hinkel claims conservatives misrepented the CBO. When you understand that Hinkle claims that conservatives misrepresented the CBO report by claiming it destroyed jobs right after he claimed liberals were wrong to claim that reducing hours is not really destroying jobs, your point is on its face ridiculous.

    We all read the article Bo. Stop pretending we didn't or are as dense as you want to appear to be.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Good lord John, this is childishly simple.

    Let's say liberals say a particular minimum wage law will not make unemployment any higher. Then lets say a report comes out saying it will slightly make unemployment higher. If someone took that report and exaggerated what it said, they would not be in conflict with also saying the liberal claim was erroneous.

  • John||

    Bo,

    Your entire paragraph has nothing to do with the argument and makes no relevant point regarding it. Neither I nor anyone else can respond to arguments that are nonsense and unresponsive to the main point.

    I am not sure if you really are this dense or it is your troll act to make arguments that have nothing to do with the point and thus lead people who do understand the point down various rabbit holes.

    Either way the effect is the same. You do not rise to the level of being worthy of paying attention to or responding to. Sorry but I will pass on going to your level of idiocy and allowing you to beat with on experience.

    Come back when you can make a cogent point.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    In four paragraphs you did not address my point, which I made in one sentence.

    And it is me trolling. Wow.

  • ||

    liberals who claim the ACA will not result in cut hours and jobs are wrong

    But that's not what they're saying in regards to the news about people leaving the workforce because OCare protects their bennies. There's a gigantic difference between OCare leading to Employer decisions to cut jobs vs. OCare leading to Employee decisions to not work.

    Yes, there most certainly ARE facets of OCare that lead to Employer decisions to cut jobs. And those facets are job killing. But this particular debate is not discussion those facets.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Look, I hate Obamacare. It is abhorrent form beginning to end. From the tax on tanning salons to the restrictions on insurers to making the Little Sisters of the Poor do what their conscience forbids just so Obama can score political points with women.

    Having said that, one can believe both that liberals who claimed employers would not cut hours and jobs to avoid falling under certain provisions AND that some Republicans misrepresented the CBO news that some workers would elect to leave the workplace because the ACA would cover benefits they were working to maintain. One can say, without having to postulate they are just saying it to please some hypothetical liberal friends, that the latter is not the same thing as 'killing jobs.'

    And again, what gets my goat is when John, who is quite explicit in his support of statism (certainly the Iraq debacle is one of the top five statist blunders of recent times) calls out Hinkle, who consistently argues against the state, tries to make this bogus claim in order to try to paint Hinkle as the biased one.

  • ||

    calls out Hinkle, who consistently argues against the state

    Does it really matter whose team he's on if his arguments are terribly presented? We're calling Hinkle out, like Ron Hart (I finally remembered his name) for being a hack. His viewpoints don't elevate his hackery. He sucks at presenting a good argument.

    Sullum and Balko are two of the best around. There are many others. Hinkle I could do without.

    You are acting simply like a TEAM player.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    So John takes the time to call out the author on what is a throwaway line in his article that criticizes Team Red, accuses the author of Team Blue bias, and I step in to say how tiresome that is, and it is ME acting like a Team player?

    With all due respect PM, that assessment from you says more about you and your likely Team proclivities than anything about me.

  • JWatts||

    "So John takes the time to call out the author on what is a throwaway line in his article that criticizes Team Red,"

    John called him out specifically for using a throw away line.

  • The Last American Hero||

    I'm not so sure - a lot of people are content to hang on to unemployment until the benefits are close to running out. How is that an employer action? It's the State enabling sloth.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I think this would have been a better way to characterize some of what the CBO was talking about. Instead of 'jobs killed' it would have been more accurate to say 'workforce participation depressed in favor of government handouts.'

    Now, I myself do not have much of an issue with politicians and pundits using the former line because politics is not always an exact and careful game.

    But to call out Hinkle because he happens to not care for the former and wishes people said the latter because it is more accurate is wrong. And when the person calling him out uses a tired line like 'impress his liberal friends' it is worth saying 'oh, please.'

  • ||

    So I am afraid when I see you accusing him of bias because he criticized something Team Red said I think that says more about you than him.

    The criticism was that he said something abjectly retarded that made absolutely no sense except in a context so narrow as to be meaningless, not which TEAM it was in reference to. Republicans were right to claim that the CBO report said Obamacare will cost 2 million jobs, because it will. Hinkle is spitting hairs over the difference between laying off 2 million people (which wasn't a specific argument I even seen anybody make wrt the CBO report) and incentivizing 2 million people to stay home instead of working. Functionally, there is no difference. He's playing the "look how balanced muh coverage!" is game. It's pandering. That you ate it up with a fork is proof enough of that.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    See, much like John, who declared it hyperbole, you seem to concede that what the Republicans Hinkle criticized said can be interpreted as not fully correct. You dismiss it as 'splitting hairs,' but that suggests you yourself see a hair to split. You are willing to forgive the Republicans for not being 100% technically accurate and think it is 'splitting hairs' to point out they are not. But maybe Hinkle is the kind of guy who tries to insist on people being as accurate as possible, even in the rough game of politics. Now, maybe Hinkle is wrong, maybe he is naïve to have such a standard. But to call him out as biased for it, especially from a guy who has explicitly taken a bevy of abhorrently statist positions here in just the few months I have been reading, strikes me as the greatest of chutzpah. That John gets away with that here is just further evidence of how Reason's comment board has become kind of a paleo/conservative board. This is fairly remarkable given that in libertarian circles Reason, the magazine (its writers, editors and fellows) are certainly not of this type. Why the libertarians here have allowed this culture to flourish here is beyond me.

  • ||

    Bo is completely right here.

    The Republicans shot themselves in the foot by not bothering to read the report and went off an idiotic tangent about job losses. Which completely fucked the whole story, which actually is enormously advantageous to them.

    Why bullshit about job killing, when you've got the Democrats on the record openly saying it's awesome to put more people on the dole?

  • ||

    Bo is completely right here.

    The Republicans shot themselves in the foot by not bothering to read the report and went off an idiotic tangent about job losses. Which completely fucked the whole story, which actually is enormously advantageous to them.

    Why bullshit about job killing, when you've got the Democrats on the record openly saying it's awesome to put more people on the dole?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    We have the lowest labor force participation in a long time under Obama. We see more and more nations like Greece failing as the percentage of people dependent swamps the shrinking percentage of people laying the eggs. We ourselves see the handwriting on the wall about our bloated entitlement programs going under due to a shrinking base of people working and paying in. And then this report says Obama's signature legislation is going to exacerbate that.

    But yes, the GOP, stuck on some Luntzian magic words PR campaign, have to shoehorn it into 'jobs killed' rhetoric. And anyone who questions that must just be doing so to impress their liberal friends.

    Sheesh.

  • ||

    You dismiss it as 'splitting hairs,' but that suggests you yourself see a hair to split.

    I actually don't, but I can see how someone with an agenda might torture it to make a "gotcha" point that misses the substance of the criticism entirely, sacrificing accuracy for precision; and that's giving Hinkle the most charitable possible interpretation. Again, that the only person who can easily sympathize with this level of infinitesimally petty pedantry for its own sake is you kinda sums up the entirety of the criticism.

    That John gets away with that here is just further evidence of how Reason's comment board has become kind of a paleo/conservative board.

    SOCONS! SOCONS ERRYWHERE!!!!

    John gets shit all the time on here from just about everyone, including me, when he's playing the Team Red version of you. That he isn't should probably tell you something (and if the something it tells you is that everybody but you on this website is a rabid BUSHPIG CHRISTFAG SOCON!!!!(!!!!!)!!!!, you're doing it wrong)

  • Sevo||

    "Hinkle has one paragraph rightly pointing out how rediculous liberals were to claim people working less and leaving the work force really is different than Obamacare destroying jobs."

    Well, I guess they aren't jobs - "jobs", just like the death panel won't be the "death panel".

  • Loki||

    Those were sub-standard jobs anyway. /prog-derp

  • ||

    Well, conservatives are really, freaking dumb for claiming it destroys jobs, instead of going after the truth, which is that it encourages free-riding.

    That left the field open for liberals to trot out multiple layers of bullshit from saying it has something to do with job lock to isn't it great people don't have to have jobs to pay for their healthcare anymore.

    As a result, the news media is distracted by the fact that Republicans are telling a whopper about jobs, and are completely ignoring the fact that liberals are openly championing encouraging able-bodied adults to go on the dole.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Hazel, you are obviously just saying this to impress your liberal friends.

  • John||

    Hazel,

    If I quit my job to go on welfare and my employer doesn't hire anyone to replace me, my job has been destroyed.

    The only way the Liberal account works is if the aggregate number of hours stayed constant. Then, it really would be the case of the law causing some people to choose not to work but not otherwise destroying jobs.

    But that is not what is happening according to the CBO report. What is happening is people will work less or stop working and those hours won't be made up by other workers. That is destroying jobs.

  • ||

    Jesus Christ on a stick, John. You're going to sit there and split semantic hairs about job destruction when the Democrats are running around with their cock hanging out celebrating dependence?

    You're so focused on not admitting that the Republicans ever, ever, said anything untrue or incorrect, that you're unable to stop to notice how insanely stupid the Democrats are being.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "You're so focused on not admitting that the Republicans ever, ever, said anything untrue or incorrect"

    His raison d'etre it seems.

  • John||

    I don't what to tell you Hazel. If I quit my job tommorow, they would hire someone else. That is because, my job is still there and the work has to be done. But if I quit and my employer doesn't hire someone new, my job is gone. That is no different than if I had been laid off. The difference between me being fired and being laid off is in the first case my job remains and my misfortune is someone else' good fortune and the total level of employment remains the same. In the second case, no one benefits from my misfortune and the level of employment drops.

    So, if I quit and no one gets my job thanks me quitting, MY JOB NO LONGER EXISTS.

    What the fuck is wrong with you Hazel. That is basic labor economics. It is not hard. Did you fall and hit your head or something?

  • ||

    Who cares?

    It would be much more interesting to point out that having 2.5 million fewer workers paying taxes will inevitably create a drag on the economy through higher taxes on everyone else, which will destroy jobs by reducing overall growth in the long run.

    Your hair splitting about what counts as job-killing is just going to bore and antagonize swing voters. It's a stupid, counter-productive line of argument.

  • John||

    Who cares?

    The two and a half million people who are no longer employed maybe? Maybe voters who worry about the state of the economy.

    By your idiotic logic Hazel, no program ever destroys jobs. The government could just say "this program just caused people to voluntarily leave their positions and not be replaced."

    You keep screaming I am just talking about "semantics" and then immediately invent a new way to describe a job being destroyed.

    The CBO report clearly shows that this program is going to destroy 2.5 million jobs. There is no honest way to deny that. Claiming that is not really true because those people will just be "leaving jobs voluntarily and not be replaced" is absurd.

    Hinkle is dead wrong here. I am frankly surprised you are trying to defend him.

  • ||

    The two and a half million people who are no longer employed maybe?

    The two and a half million people who are no longer employed are happy to be receiving their free shit.

    The people who are hurt by this are the people PAYING FOR THEIR SUBSIDIES.

    Focus on THEM.

  • John||

    The two and a half million people who are no longer employed are happy to be receiving their free shit.

    Good for them. But they won't be replaced at their jobs which means THOSE JOBS NO LONGER EXIST. And that is the point. If you want to bitch about free shit, have fun.

    But that won't make the Republican point any less correct or Hinkle any less of an idiot. Why are you choosing to die on this hill? You are not a concern troll like Bo. And you normally are smart enough to know better.

  • OneOut||

    John is correct here.

    If Obamacare causes the loss of 2.5 million jobs, Obamacare has killed 2.5 million jobs.

    The little spins are ineffectual.

    Obamacare killed/resulted in the loss of 2.5 million jobs.

    Period.

  • ||

    You're going to sit there and split semantic hairs about job destruction when the Democrats are running around with their cock hanging out celebrating dependence?

    That's actually more like what the people obsessing over the definition of a "destroyed job" are doing.

    "HERPITY DERP DURRR! 2 million fewer people will be in the labor force, but no jobs will be "destroyed"

    Calling that a "whopper" when the substance of it is true and the entirety of the criticism rests on the precise definition of the word "destroyed" is the semantic masturbation.

  • ||

    Just focus on the fact that people are going to be incentivized to become welfare dependents.

    Don't worry about whether what the Republicans said is true or not.

    Focus on the REAL ISSUE.
    ObamaCare incentivizes going on the dole instead of supporting yourself. THat's the core problem.

  • John||

    Don't worry about whether what the Republicans said is true or not.

    How about we not lie and say they were wrong when in fact that were right? How about that Hazel?

    And can you just admit PM and I are right about the CBO report? If you can do that, I will gladly engage in a bitch fest about free shit with you.

  • SusanM||

    The problem is that you're using a hypothetical situation which depends on unknown variables when a huge concrete situation is right there in front of you.

    If people aren't replaced if they leave then maybe their company was happy to save the money on a redundant position in the first place. If you leave your job then a partial subsidy on insurance isn't going to pay the bills so you're going to have to work somewhere - perhaps somewhere that you like and will be as productive or more, at least in reaching your own personal goals. To list a few examples. Attacking it from that end makes one look either naive or dishonest.

    Attacking the principle of the subsidy and of the government promoting dependance is a much more fruitful line as there's a lot less wiggle room for the opposition. Although you'd have to explain Friedman and Hayeks tentative support for a minimum income.

  • SusanM||

    Attacking it from that end and screaming "JERB KILLURZ" makes one look either naive or dishonest.

  • John||

    Attacking it from that end and screaming "JERB KILLURZ" makes one look either naive or dishones

    No. It makes one look honest because that is exactly what it does.

    Do we need to explain to you like we did to Hazel how labor markets work? Can you just read the posts and figure it out yourself or do you need special tutoring?

  • John||

    Susan,

    The dependence angle is perfectly appropriate. But I never claimed it wasn't. My point was always that the Republican claims were correct and Hinkle was engaging in smarmy ass "but they did it too" equivocation in the article.

    That was all I ever said. And that point stands. But that doesn't mean that the law isn't also awful because it encourages people not to work.

  • John||

    If people aren't replaced if they leave then maybe their company was happy to save the money on a redundant position in the first place.

    Maybe. But the much more likly reason is that the employer planned to lay them off and the employee quit before it happened.

    Companies generally don't keep employees out of a sense of charity. They keep them because they need them. And if they quit, the company replaces them usually. If not, then the job was going to be eliminated anyway. Sure, in some cases maybe the company realizes "hey we really didn't need Bob after all". But that is just a one off anecdote and illustrates nothing other than macro economic describes the aggregate not every individual case.

  • SusanM||

    I see what you're saying. But what I'm saying is that arguing from that end only leads to a miasma of buts and what ifs - especially if you start off with an oversimplified premise - which gives the progs an advantage.

    Politics is perception. I'm not objecting to the principles behind the argument but it's presentation. IIRC, you don't have a particularly high view of the average voter so why assume that they won't be confused when something like this happens? They're not going to look into the details and weigh the evidence, they're going to think "Wow, the Repubs are lying about Obamacare" and leave it at that.

  • John||

    Susan that may be true. But that just means the Republicans did not play good politics. It doesn't mean they were wrong or were lying, which is what Hinkle accused them of.

    This whole thing was always about my criticism of Hinkle not about any larger issues of how the Republicans should attack this law. Hinkle was wrong to call the Republicans liars on this. That was always my point.

  • SusanM||

    Okay, I see where you're coming from.

  • OneOut||

    "isn't going to pay the bills so you're going to have to work somewhere - perhaps somewhere that you like and will be as productive or more, at least in reaching your own personal goals."

    is that you Nancy Pelosi ?

    So they are going to leave a job because of Obamacare dis incentives and then get a "more productive" job because of Obamacare subsidies ? Is Obamacare going to subsidize some jobs over others ?

  • ||

    Just focus on the fact that people are going to be incentivized to become welfare dependents.

    Don't worry about whether what the Republicans said is true or not.

    Nobody was focused on or worried about the veracity of the Republicans' statements on the matter here until Hinkle called them untrue when they weren't. That was the point.

  • Tonio||

    Facts are easy. You can check facts.

    You can check your bourgeoisie fact-privelege right there Mr. Barton Hinkel. /proggie

  • Loki||

    the latest issue of Regulation magazine

    This is a real thing? WTF?

  • Sevo||

    Oh, yes.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    It is a magazine critical of regulation, put out by Cato.

  • Loki||

    Ah, I was assuming it was a magazine put out by Cass Sunstien to give regulators a hummer.

  • Sevo||

    Pretty dry reading, but there are gems.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Accurate assessment on both counts, Sevo.

  • Root Boy||

    That is probably Government Executive magazine

  • Cloudbuster||

    Death Panels are a whopper? The administration has admitted that there will be health care rationing and death panels in all but name. Someday Grandma's going to get a letter from the government: "It has been determined that further aggressive treatment of your condition is not optimal. You are being referred to the hospice and palliative care system."

    Since private care options will have been all but destroyed for everyone but the very rich, this will be a death sentence for people in the middle class and lower.

  • Agammamon||

    She won't even get that letter. The NHS will make that determination and then her doctor will quietly put her on the Liverpool Care Pathway for the sick and Dying and they'll simply stop feeding her.

    Oh wait, that's what's happening in the UK *right now* so it'll be 10 years before we start it here.

  • Dweebston||

    The "death panels" bit was overblown, which is the point. Substantively it's correct because it's inevitable, but there were better and more immediate reasons to oppose the bill other than mawkish, liberal-lite arguments about grandma being taken off chemo.

  • John||

    Yes. It was a clever piece of hyperbole to illustrate an underlying truth. Since the defenders of this law knew it was the truth but couldn't admit it, they focused on the hyperbole and the semantics hoping no one would notice the truth it was meant to illustrate.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Here you admit that it is hyperbole, which is defined as "the use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech. It may be used to evoke strong feelings or to create a strong impression, but is not meant to be taken literally" but supra you claimed that for Hinckle to criticize such means he must be trying to impress his liberal friends.

    Sheesh.

  • John||

    I can't explain the nuances of logic and rhetoric to you in this forum. And they seem beyond you anyway.

    To put it in simpler terms that you might understand. There is nothing wrong with hyperbole as a rhetorical device and its use doesn't mean there isn't underlying and important truths being illustrated. And my criticisms of Hinkle have nothing to do with the rhetorical devices he uses but rather the underlying truth and internal logic of his claims.

    I really don't know what else to tell you or know how to make you understand when you clearly lack the ability or willingness to do so.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    It is inconceivable to John that someone could object to an (he admits!) exaggeration, so much so that it can only be explained by some ulterior motive. And of course, that motive is the tired 'cosmotarians needz cocktailz parties!' one.

    How tiresome.

  • John||

    Yes Bo, you are very tiresome. I find it difficult to believe you are as thick as you appear to be. You just pretend to be so and make tiresome and false arguments just to fuck with the threads and obscure points you don't like. I should not indulge you as much as I do.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Now who is making no argument at all?

    Since you say you want to engage the point, here it is (again!): is it so inconceivable that Hinckle could just object to what you yourself declare is hyperbole that you have to conclude that he is only doing so to curry favor with some liberal elite friends? I mean, maybe he just dislikes hyperbole wherever it comes from. And the whole 'to be friends with liberals, cocktail parties!' thing was tiresome when the paleos trotted out, but it is just pathetic for a Team Red person such as yourself to make it.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    John is a fucking Team Red idiot placeholder who thinks Sarah Palin in an intellectual.

    Go back and read his predictions - he is always wrong. Always.

    Romney is POTUS now, did you know that?

  • John||

    CHRISTFAG!!!

    Yes Shreek, help Bo shit all over the thread so we don't notice how the Black Messiah fucked this up. Do your best shreek. This is your element. There are not any talking points left for you to fuck up. Throwing shit is all your side has left. And you do that well.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Who is 'sh*tting' on the thread but you, who felt the need to call out the author because he criticized people on your team in a brief, throwaway sentence?

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|2.12.14 @ 11:43AM|#
    "John is a fucking Team Red idiot placeholder who thinks Sarah Palin in an intellectual."

    And you, you lying piece of shit, try to misdirect the issue, ignoring that Palin is right, and you and your fave liar-in-chief are wrong.

  • ||

    It is inconceivable to John that someone could object to an (he admits!) exaggeration...

    Hinkle didn't call the "death panels" remark an exaggeration - he called a "whopper", which in common parlance means "a lie". It wasn't a lie. It was barely an exaggeration (only in the sense that "death panels" is perhaps a loaded term).

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    While 'whopper' can be taken to mean a lie it originates from saying something is enormous, extreme, big, exaggerated. This is why people say 'he told a whopper of a lie,' which, if it only meant a lie would be a redundant phrase. I think Hinkle could be fairly read to say it was an extreme and/or exaggerated claim. Heck, even John called it 'hyperbole.'

  • ||

    Without a qualifying noun to apply it to, most people with a functional grasp of American English are going to assume "whopper" to be describing a lie. If you want to go down that rabbit hole, we may as well say "he could have been referring to a Burger King hamburger sandwich". Yeah, he sure could have, but since we're all basically literate people, we know that not to be the case.

    In any case, it was a ridiculous bit of pedantry whose only purpose in the context of the article was to grope for some equivalence between Republicans and Democrats wrt to falsehoods about the ACA for the sake of balance. In the sense that it provided a workable byline for the article, I guess it worked. It's about as valid an equivalence as comparing an uncited Wikipedia synopsis in a policy speech to Obama's "If you like your policy you can keep your policy, period" remark.

  • Nazdrakke||

    I really don't know what else to tell you or know how to make you understand when you clearly lack the ability or willingness to do so.

    Keep pushing that rock, Tantalus, you'll get it to the top eventually.

  • Azathoth!!||

    No, John, it wasn't 'hyperbole'. It was poetic license.

    Using the term 'hyperbole' lets idiots leap on you. Your trademark misspelling and crude turns of phrase might be endearing, but they allow for things like this to happen

    Palin wasn't exaggerating, she was calling a spade a spade instead of calling it an Independent Patients Advisory Board.

    The board of unelected bureaucrats who will decide if your value to society merits your continued treatment is very real.

  • John||

    I wouldn't call my turns of phrase crude.

    But other than that, yes, she was dead on. But you have to remember that people like Bo and Shreek are so fanatical that you have to give them some ground, especially when it relates to Palin. If I had said, she was dead on accurate, they just would have laughed and said "you think Palin is smart" and been able to avoid the underlying point completely.

  • Sevo||

    ..."there were better and more immediate reasons to oppose the bill other than mawkish, liberal-lite arguments about grandma being taken off chemo."

    I dunno. Dear ol' Mom being cut from the list has a certain resonance for me.
    And I'm not real sympathetic to the claim that facts of that sort really aren't discussed in 'polite company'.
    Let's be clear: Some government agency is gonna decide who gets the meds next week, and if Mom's got the short straw, she gets the box.
    If that's too strong for polite company, well, maybe polite company needs a bit of an awakening.

  • John||

    there were better and more immediate reasons to oppose the bill other than mawkish, liberal-lite arguments about grandma being taken off chemo."

    I think a concrete example of a government program killing someone is a perfectly valid argument against it. The person who wrote that doesn't know what "mawkish" means.

    Mawkish means a weak emotional appeal lacking substance. Since when is the fate of an actual person not substantive or purely emotional?

    A mawkish appeal would be something like "if this bill doesn't pass American Children will have to suffer". Pointing to an actual person and a real consequence of the bill, is argument by anecdote. But it is not mawkish.

  • Dweebston||

    I don't disagree with you about the substance of the point. It's just a shame that it's unfortunate valid concerns were ellided by the left and its media because they had "death panel" soundbytes from Palin et al.

  • Dweebston||

    I really need to proof my comments before posting.

    just a shame/it's unfortunate

    Take your pick.

  • John||

    They would have round some other way to lie. I think Palin made a clever point that hurt them. That is why they went so insane over it. The truth is to these people like holy water is to a vampire. All they do is lie and anyone who tells the truth creates the risk that the entire body of lies will be exposed.

  • Sevo||

    "That is why they went so insane over it."

    And the major news outlets weather-vaned right in line, serving up propaganda rather than calling them on the bullshit.
    Regardless of Palin's qualifications, she was right and she got her chops busted for it.

  • Dweebston||

    But this was never aimed at people with coverage. Obama bent over backwards lying assuring people who already had insurance that the ACA wouldn't affect them. The people whom he wanted onboard were the young and the naive who earnestly believed the law would help poor folks (and themselves, of course). The question of death panels was moot, and harping on it played to the wrong sort of voter: people already opposed to the law.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Again, maybe Hinkle just does not like exaggerated or appeal-to-emotion arguments, even if they are rhetorically useful in some people's eyes.

    I mean, this gets my goat. Hinkle consistently takes an anti-state view on things. Then we have this self declared conservative Republican who in recent months has admitted to me that he supported the Iraq War (the second one no less), has argued for a state role in education and fostering marriage, trying to call out Hinkle because he did not like what he himself called 'hyperbole' by some Republicans. That is chutzpah.

  • ||

    Since you keep bringing it up, it may be useful to point out that Hinkle supports both a role for the state in eduction (he supports public schools with a voucher system) and marriage (he supports expanding the current set of marriage laws to include homosexual couples). None of which is relevant to the fact that he called a lie that which was not a lie.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I think you are mischaracterizing Hinkle on gay marriage.

    "Set aside for the moment the profoundly authoritarian implications of assuming that “ordering ... human relationships” is any part of government’s job. And that government can be trusted to know what is “ideal” and “optimal.” And that it should seek to enforce its vision of what is “ideal” rather than simply protect individuals’ liberty to pursue their own happiness as they define it."

    http://www.timesdispatch.com/o.....4ebd4.html

    He is not supporting government marriage, he is saying, even if one were to accept that role then gay marriages should still be allowed alongside straight ones.

  • ||

    He is not supporting government marriage, he is saying, even if one were to accept that role then gay marriages should still be allowed alongside straight ones.

    Without that role there is literally no such thing as government marriage, so it's a distinction without a difference. Hinkle is quite adept at fabricating those.

  • Sevo||

    Dweebston|2.12.14 @ 11:39AM|#
    "But this was never aimed at people with coverage."

    True enough (at least that was the claim), but he scores Maggy's drawers for the supposed aim at the not-covered.

  • Cloudbuster||

    I think this is more accurately described as Kafkaesque than Lovecraftian.

  • Tonio||

    Agreed, but I'll take any excuse for a good Lovecraft mythos reference.

  • John||

    ^^THIS^^

  • Number 2||

    We all seem to have forgotten the original purported purpose of the law, contained in its very name: to reduce the cost of health insurance and provide coverage to 45 million uninsured Americans.

    Have your premiums gone down? And even the law's defenders admit that after it is fully implemented, 25 million Americans will remain uninsured.

    But now we know the real purpose of the law: to spare people of the burden of actually having to hold jobs!

  • John||

    It was sold as a way to reduce costs, provide better care to the poor, and increase employment by making American companies more competitive since their health care costs would go down.

    No kidding. Everyone who argued for this was suffering from some form of insanity.

  • Sevo||

    "It was sold as a way to reduce costs, provide better care to the poor, and increase employment by making American companies more competitive since their health care costs would go down."

    And as it has failed in all particulars, it is defended simply because that lying bastard in the WH got it passed.
    There is zero justification other than that.

  • John||

    All they have left is "its the law" and "the Republicans don't have any ideas".

    They passed a law which is a complete disaster and resulting in huge amounts of harm and misery. But apparently they have no obligation to offer ways to fix it. It is the Republicans job to do that I guess and if they can't do it then the law stays.

    God these people are awful.

  • Loki||

    a place where the individual mandate is both a tax and not a tax; where the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause requires religious people to violate their faith; where “the state” means “the federal government”; where taking a job is wage slavery, but taking a handout is freedom.

    You forgot "freedom is asking permission and taking orders, not taking is giving, minimizing one's tax burden through legal means is tax evasion..."

    I'm sure there's several more, but you all get the idea.

  • WTF||

    "Freedom is slavery, war is peace, etc."

  • Agammamon||

    Not paying your taxes is a violation of human rights.

    Richard Murphy ‏@RichardJMurphy · 4h
    Blog: The non-payment of tax is an abuse of human rights - It's been argued on the blog this morning that: Taki... http://ow.ly/2DNsY3

  • Paul.||

    Tax is as a result a property right belonging to a government.

    Oh... my... lord.

  • Loki||

    THIS IS WHAT PROGRESSIVES ACTUALLY BELIEVE.

  • Root Boy||

    Sure they do. I listened to some prog radio host yesterday (Tom Hartman?) and he was listing how much the average tax payer pays for UI - claimed $25/yr.

    But.....we all pay $4K/yr in subsidies to big oil and such. YOU PAY THAT EVERY YEAR, SUCKER!!!

    No word on how much income tax is paid by Exxon and other corporations every year.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Property rights are created by law.

    Once you posit that any right is created by government, that right is no longer really a right, it is just a privilege afforded you by those with power.

  • Paul.||

    I've argued here that some rights are created by law, but natural rights aren't. Natural rights are the things that you can do in the absence of government. Free speech, right to bear arms etc.

    But I can live with the notion that some rights are created and protected by law: Right to trial by jury. That's not really something that exists in the absence of government.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    FYI, for those of you into these things, Netflix will stream "Call of Cthulhu", a 2005 pic made to look like a 1920s silent.

  • Paul.||

    The Republicans should just say, "Two million jobs killed or weakened!"

  • John||

    Two million jobs that were not saved.

  • ||

    The Republicans should completely shut up about jobs and start talking about makers vs. takers.

    That's two million more people on the dole and two million fewer epople to support them. And the Democrats think that's just awesome.

  • Root Boy||

    Because it's now at a point where too many voters are on some sort of dole.

    Romney's 47% comment will not go down well with the electorate.

    Need more talk about how regulations and uncertainty (changing laws at whim) destroy the economy and jobs.

  • ||

    And the Democrats don't give a shit about the 53% who do pay taxes.

    Otherwise they wouldn't be celebrating loading more people ont otheir backs.

  • John||

    Hazel. You are wrong about the jobs. Think about it. I am surprised you can't see that. If the total number of hours worked goes down, jobs are destroyed. It is really that simple. We have a terrible labor force participation rate and huge numbers of unemployed. If the Liberal acount were true and people were just voluntarily leaving jobs because they no longer needed them to have insurance but no jobs were being destroyed, the total number of hours worked would remain the same as previously unemployed people took the place of those choosing not to work.

    But the number of hours is going down. That means those people are quitting and their job is going away when they leave.

    Get it?

  • ||

    It's a semantic point!Nobody gives a shit!

    You're letting the Democrats get away with saying that it's greta people are being liberated from their jobs. As if the money is coming out of th ether.

    They've got a giant gaping hole in their defenses, and you're focused on a fucking anthill!

  • John||

    It's a semantic point!Nobody gives a shit!]

    I guess semantics is one word to use for the truth.

    The bottom line here is that people are choosing to quit their jobs and either it is too expensive to hire replacements for them or Obamacare is so corrosive to the incentive to work employers will be unable to hire replacements for them. That is two sides of the same coin. It is called destroying jobs.

    If that makes you uncomfortable, I don't know what to tell you. I don't control the logic and the predictable second order effects of this. I just try to explain it to you.

  • R C Dean||

    The bottom line here is that people are choosing to quit their jobs

    Not even that. That's part of the Dem fantasy that the disappearance of 2mm FTE worth of paid work (which I am comfortable call "jobs") is people voluntarily abandoning their jobs.

    Most of those jobs will disappear through attrition. The current holder is fired, gets another job, retires, whatev. And the job just disappears. Even if the current holder did leave voluntarily (retirement, another job), that job is still gone.

  • John||

    Yes. That is the point I have tried about ten times to make to Hazel. If I leave my job, be it get fired or quit or retire or whatever, and my employer doesn't replace me, my job no longer exists. It has been destroyed.

    And yes, I don't buy for a minute that those jobs are going to be destroyed through voluntary attrition. That was just the CBO lying to try and put a good spin on this disaster. Those people are mostly or nearly all going to be laid off.

    But I just assumed that point because it was hard enough to get the first point through Haze's thick skull and didn't want to distract from my efforts.

  • ||

    Did you not even pay attention to the report? The CBO is explicitly saying those people WILL leave voluntarily, because they will be incentivized to do so by the subsidies. THAT THE WHOLE POINT.
    The marginal tax rates are so high that you might as well not work, because you'll just spend all your extra income on health insurance when you lose your subsidies.

  • OneOut||

    ergo the job has been destroyed by legislation.

  • BillEverman||

    But put yourself in the position of the employer. Old Bob has decided not to work anymore because Obamacare makes it possible for him not to. What do you do? Do you suddenly realize that Old Bob wasn't actually contributing anything to your bottom line, and why did we keep that guy around anyway?...or do you go find a replacement?

    If you go find a replacement, then those man-hours weren't actually "lost"; they've just been awarded to some unemployed guy who's grateful to get it. Thus, Old Bobs everywhere rejoice at their extra leisure time while the number of man-hours remain steady, and unemployment drops by 2.5 million full-time jobs' worth of man-hours. But that's not what the CBO report is saying. Why not?

  • Paul.||

    You're letting the Democrats get away with saying that it's greta people are being liberated from their jobs.

    I agree here a hunnert ten percent. This goes right to my point about Democrats becoming the party that simply wants to pay people not to work.

    Progressives have argued, clearly, on these here pages that if I have to drag my ass into the office every day to finance someone else's dream of becoming an Artiste there is a net increase in freedom because they've been liberated from having to work for a living.

    This is the most corrosive form of thinking that has become mainstream Democratic thought and talking points. Liberals lost, progressives won. This is the outcome.

  • R C Dean||

    You're letting the Democrats get away with saying that it's greta people are being liberated from their jobs.

    No, we're not. We're saying (1) The Dem's idiot law will destroy 2mm jobs and (2) the Dems think that destroying jobs is a good thing.

  • Root Boy||

    And Nancy Pelosi was saying this as far back as 2011 (or even right after the law passed in 2010) that it will be great for all those young people who want to be artists and writers to quit.

    Yet Obama was re-elected on this and other economy and work ethic killing platforms in 2012.

    I didn't think Romney was a great alternative (and didn't vote for him) but he at least tried to point to work ethic as being important while Obama spouted off that you didn't build that.

    We're done as far as I can see. People don't give a shit and want the government to take care of them.

  • prolefeed||

    I'm gonna guess that if implemented fully, more than 2 million jobs would be destroyed or not created in the first place, but it's starting to look like that full implementation isn't gonna happen.

    Unless the Ds don't get their asses handed to them in the midterms, in which case all bets are off. If people screw up and there's no consequences, expect more and bigger screwups.

  • ||

    The Dem's idiot law will not destroy jobs, it will cause millions of people to reduce their hours worked so they can qualify for subsidies.

    Arguing about whether it's a "job killer" or not distracts attention from whether it is a good idea to incentivize people to work less so they can get bigger subsidies.

  • John||

    Yes it will Hazel. If it didn't the number of hours worked wouldn't be shown to drop.

    What the hell is wrong with you today? Are you so obsessed with the Welfarz that you can't think?

  • ||

    I'm obsessed with the fact that you guys are blowing this huge opportunity to tear a hole in the core of the progressive movement's philosophy, by idiotically obsessing over the definition of "job loss".

  • DarrenM||

    How can you "tear a hole in the core of the progressive movement's philosophy" if you simultaneously allow progressives to define the terms you will presumably use to do it?

  • JWatts||

    I agree with this. If you let one side define the terminology, you've put yourself at a severe disadvantage in winning any influence on the undecided.

    The usage "job loss" is literally true. And it has emotional appeal to the independents. So I'm not sure what the beef is in pointing it out.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Hazel -

    I think I get your point here - but as John pointed out, it's a strategic/political question.

    & I think when you assume if had been argued "correctly" it would've worked, you are assuming the media and others bashing the R's for their exaggeration correct assessment of the CBO report would be treated differently if only they had not exaggerated made a proper assessment of the CBO report.

    Sorry, but in reality - any use of the CBO report was going to be dismissed by almost all media and the current WH/supporters.

    In fact - had they made a perfect argument, utilizing language reminiscent of Thomas Paine - they simply would've hidden it by never talking about it.

    So sure - may be R's would've been better off arguing from point A instead of point B, but let's not fool ourselves into assuming there is any strategic position the R's can take which is dis-favorable to Obama, but would still get an honest and objective hearing from most media.

    Not to fear though - the FCC is coming to fix all those media problems - like too much Fox and not enough "global climate change".

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Sorry, but in reality - any use of the CBO report was going to be dismissed by almost all media and the current WH/supporters.

    To offer proof - see the idea from the D's right after the report came out that it's really a positive thing for the economy overall.

    I think maybe for the R's and L's, it's time to stop contemplating how to argue specific points and win with the media and instead work on proper arguments with intellectual consistency all of which can be tied to the goals of freedom.

    & screw the media when they don't understand or when "R's got together today to talk about economic issues, but only racists showed up" or whatever new criticism they come up with because until more fundamental societal change exists, the current SOP is not going to change.

    Step 1 - research person making argument and find it if they are either "good people" or fighting for the "right side".

    If argued by "good people" but on the "wrong side" - publish with direct critique about a recent friend leaning towards evil. Page 32-F

    If argued by "good people" and is on the "right side" - then publish with phrases such as "all reasonable people agree" or "common sense tells us all" - ensure any contradictory facts are excluded or dismissed outright. Page 1-A

    If argued by "bad people" on the "wrong side" - hide argument completely, but publish articles against various stawmen - include words like "racist", "teabaggers", and others. Page 16-A (but definitely news, not opinion).

  • CampingInYourPark||

    The Republicans should completely shut up about jobs and start talking about makers vs. takers

    Seems like I've seen this strategy played out involuntarily before and it doesn't end well.

  • ||

    The Democrats weren't openly advocating creating more takers then.

  • ||

    The Democrats weren't openly advocating creating more takers then.

    You must have been looking at a very different set of Democrats than I was.

  • R C Dean||

    From Sarah Palin’s 2009 warning about “death panels” to last week’s headlines that a new CBO report said the Affordable Care Act would kill more than two million jobs, the law’s critics keep telling whoppers.

    OK, its arguable whether Palin's quip about death panels is accurate (it really depends on what value of accurate you are applying), but characterizing the CBO report as saying OCare will cost us more than 2mm FTE jobs is pretty accurate for almost any value of accurate.

  • John||

    Yes it is. But Hazel swears that is just people like you and I playing semantics and no one gives a shit.

  • ||

    You're playing pointless semantic games, instead of noticing the fact that the D's are now on record saying it's a good thing for people to quit work and go on welfare, because it "liberates" them from their shitty jobs.

    You're like ignoring this giant fucking target they've painted in the middle of their forehead, because youre too busy arguing about whether your fly is technically unzipped or not.

  • John||

    No you are Hazel. I am not the one claiming that millions of people no longer working really isn't the same as the program destoying jobs.

    Stop projecting. I and RC are calling the CBO report what it is. You are the one playing semantic games pretending a reduction in the total number of hours worked isn't a reduction in employment.

    You are just dead wrong here. Just admit it and stop digging.

  • ||

    What sort of alternate reality do you live in?

    I want you to be in the one that helps libertarians win. You're going to die on that hill clinging to a Republican flag.

    It's sad.

  • John||

    Since when are you Karl Rove master political strategist?

    My point is that the Republicans were right when they said the CBO destroyed jobs and Hinkle was wrong when he tried to call them out for it. I have no idea and make no claim on whether them doing that or not is good political strategy. But even if it is bad strategy, they are still telling the truth and Hinkle is still wrong.

    What is sad here Hazel is that you have had your ass handed to you up and down this thread and you are so fucking insecure you can't just admit you were wrong about the CBO report. Instead you are reduced some pathetic claim that "who cares I was just talking about strategy".

    Really Hazel? No one was talking about political strategy here. I am the one who made the point initially. And I can assure you my point was to ding Hinkle not to comment on strategy. The Republicans are right on this and Hinkle is wrong. Get over it. Sometimes life is like that.

  • ||

    John, I'm not arguing the semantic point, because it's completely stupid. Sure some of those jobs won't be replaced, some will. But to the average person, when they see 2.5 million people quitting, they're not going to think "job killing".

    You can argue til you are blue in the face that 2.5 million fewer workers means 2.5 million fewer jobs. It's not going to change anyone's mind. it is not a valueable or fruitful line of argument.

    And in the meantime, the D's get away with saying that it's liberating to live off of subsidies paid for by someone else. And you're too busy arguing semantics to counter that.

  • John||

    None of them will be replaced Hazel. We know that because the drop in the number hours worked. Here is the bottom line

    2.5 million people stop working

    The total number of hours worked drops so much that it is clear those people were not replaced by new workers in significant numbers.

    That means it destroyed jobs and the CBO is spinning to avoid admitting that. Tony is retarrded. You are not. So get your head out of your ass and stop denying the obvious.

  • prolefeed||

    It's not alternate reality to say that the CBO report says that 2 million FTE jobs are projected to disappear, if that is what the report actually says.

    You might dispute the projection's accuracy or relevance, or argue that a loss of "FTE jobs" is not as meaningful as a complete absence of employment, but the CBO said what they said.

  • ||

    You might dispute the projection's accuracy or relevance, or argue that a loss of "FTE jobs" is not as meaningful as a complete absence of employment, but the CBO said what they said.

    This is the whole story in a nutshell.

    Hazel is presuming that anyone defending the accuracy of that statement by Republicans must therefore be neglecting to notice the Democrats' spinmeisters. Inconceivable as it may be, some of us have a broad enough attention span to accommodate both. And the issue wouldn't have even been brought up here at all had it not been for Hinkle describing it as a misstatement when it really wasn't.

  • Root Boy||

    And that seems to be the disagreement - John says heads win and HM says tails looses.

    We're all in the same boat trying to bail it out, while Tony and PBP are happily punching holes in the hull.

  • John||

    Root Boy,

    The CBO report says what it says. And the Republican characterization of it was dead on. Hinkle was wrong to criticize them for it and his criticism wasn't even internally consistent since in the paragraph before that he criticizes liberals for pretending the CBO report didn't really say Obamacare was going to destroy jobs.

    I understand why a congenital retard like Shreek who is just here to throw shit or a concern troll like Bo who is just here to make sure that facts and arguments that cut against his side are obscured, would have a problem with me or anyone else pointing this out.

    Why it is that it set a normally reasonable person like Hazel off is beyond me. My best guess is that she didn't understand the argument about the CBO report and was too insecure to concede the point after it was explained to her. But that is only a guess.

  • Tony||

    The Republican characterization, like their characterizations of everything, was a lie. There is a majorly important difference between the law causing layoffs and the law causing people to freely choose to leave jobs or cut their hours. Sorry your bumper sticker didn't work out for you.

  • John||

    Shut up Tony the adults are talking. We already knew you were an idiot. It Hazel turning into one that is at issue

  • John||

    Shut up Tony the adults are talking. We already knew you were an idiot. It Hazel turning into one that is at issue

  • Michael S. Langston||

    The Republican characterization, like their characterizations of everything, was a lie.

    For anyone who cares - if you ever find yourself believing your opponents in politics always lie - you are in an echo chamber and need to back out and check your premises.

    & no Tony - coming to a site with opinions you don't agree in, then lying about every thing to ensure Obama=good and others=evil - is not allowing you to effectively leave your echo chamber.

    In fact - with you - it seems to only have entrenched you.

    But for those with more open minds - as stated above, or some other thread, we all sometimes believe things because they seem to agree with our beliefs versus the facts bearing it out - one of the key signals that you might be falling into those traps too much is when your opponents are all "stupid" or "corrupt" or whatever...

    In a world where your side is always right and your opponents are always wrong - the smart amongst us sees that as signal to take stock of our beliefs.

    Tony not so much...

  • Tony||

    I would normally agree with you, and trust me when I say that Republicans' near-perfect inability to utter a single truthful thing baffles me as much as it would anyone.

  • BillEverman||

    But if they are "freely choosing to leave their jobs or cut their hours", then why aren't their employers "freely choosing" to replace them? If it were simply people choosing to leave their jobs or reduce their hours, then the number of hours worked in total would remain steady as unemployment dropped. But that's not what is being projected.

  • ||

    The CBO report says that 2.5 million FTE workers will leave the workforce. Since the population keeps growing and there are multiple other confounding factors, it's impossible to tell whether that means more jobs or fewer jobs.

  • ||

    The CBO projects the loss of 2.5 million FTE WORKERS from the labor force. Given that there is population growth and economic facotrs, it's impossible to predict what will happen to the overall employment rate.

    But more people on the dole, is more people on the dole, period.

  • John||

    Yes Hazel it says all of that. But when you combine that with the overall reduction in hours worked it becomes clear that this jobs are being destroyed

    What happened here is the CBO took the data and tried to spinit by claiming those are just people leaving the workforce and not jobs being destroyed. First that is fantasy. People will leave because they are fired I don't care what CBO pretends. But second, the corresponding reduction hours in work reveals the truth that those jobs are gone. It is not just people quiting.

    This thing destroys jobs. If think ceding that point and letting the dems lie and instead bitching about welfare and bums is a good political, you are a bigger half wit than Tony

    Now just stop it. You have embaressed yourself enough. We like you.

  • ||

    John, I don't understand why you seem so intent on proving that the report says people will be laid off. The explicit text of what the CBO said is bad enough.

    People will be incentivized to work less so they can get bigger subsidies! Conversely, people will be disincentivized from earning more, because they will LOSE their subsidies! This is why Rand Paul called it a "poverty trap". Because it is!

    You're totally neglecting this HUGE issue, because you're absolutely intent of defending the GOPs stupid decision to spin it as job-killing.

    It actually says something MUCH WORSE THAN THAT!

  • Michael S. Langston||

    ...the report says people will be laid off...

    I've not seen one person say the reports says these lost jobs are the same as being laid off.

    I've seen arguments which attempts to make them analogous, but in the entire thread I see nothing but "those jobs really are destroyed" with your reply "no they're not".

    Trying to now change "jobs are really destroyed" into "2.5 million people will be laid off" is a mispresentation of the entire thread.

    If I've misread something - feel free to pull it from this thread's comments and show it - I'm open to being wrong.

    But I don't think I am and if not, I'd say it underscores the point that you are still arguing a point, in a vain attempt to win an argument you've already lost - which usually, see the left today as an example, results in more confusing and ever increasing logical inconsistencies.

    IE - this might be a sign....

  • prolefeed||

    The Constitution says “all bills for raising revenue” must originate in the House of Representatives. But the ACA originated in the Senate, when Majority Leader Harry Reid took a House-passed measure, deleted its text, and substituted what became the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for the original bill.

    Technically, a "gut and replace" bill that originated in the is still a House bill. The Constitution does not specify what portion of the original content of proposed legislation must survive into the enacted bill to be considered to meet the requirements on origination.

  • R C Dean||

    So, when the Constitution says "All bills", it really just means "All bill numbers"? Because that's all that's left of a gut and replace bill: the bill number.

  • prolefeed||

    Technical details matter. The Constitution says "All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills."

    Gut and replace is technically an "Amendment". Try to propose wording to prevent "gut and replace", and guess what? Then they'll amend a bill by preserving 1% of the original content, or 10%, or whatever.

    If you don't like "gut and replace", you would need to amend the Constitution, and finding wording that wouldn't create an even bigger mess that couldn't be finessed would likely be impossible.

  • prolefeed||

    Look, I hate gut and replace as much or more as you do, but after working 8 years in the Hawaii state legislature observing the sausage making at close quarters, I reluctantly don't see a practical way to replace the Constitution's wording, and if you say, "Well, let's just ignore wording that we find inconvenient", that's gonna be a precedence statists will be delighted to run with.

  • prolefeed||

    First sentence should have read: "Technically, a "gut and replace" bill that originated in the House is still a House bill."

    Fucking Windows 8.

  • OldMexican||

    The other day The New York Times took this absurdity another step further


    For The New York Times, taking an absurdity one step further is just another day at the job.

    Remember how the NYT misrepresented economist and libertarian extraordinaire Walter Block's comment about slavery (making it seem like he said slavery wasn't so bad) by completely taking it out of context?

  • sasob||

    In response, Obamacare defenders could simply say that life is full of trade-offs, and ensuring access to free contraception is more important than religious liberty.

    The real trade-off they're offering - the one they always offer - is "your money or your life."

  • DarrenM||

    When the employer mandate finally kicks in, I wonder how many employers will use this as an opportunity to cut wages.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    When the employer mandate finally kicks in, I wonder how many employers will use this as an opportunity to cut wages.

    The increased costs for healthcare plans, which will have to be at least partially borne out by the employees, will be an effective wage cut as is.

    Though some companies may well need to cut salaries, or freeze raises to help as well.

    The salary cut is built in to O-care, as in the future employees with good health insurance today, will have to take less access for higher monthly costs and higher out of pocket costs.

    Which means even those "rich" enough to afford all of this without too much pain, will still have less to spend on other interests.

    Further depressing demand for goods and services, further depressing demand for jobs themselves.

    The only people will a silver lining here are those who actually hate illegal immigrants - as with a constantly shrinking job market, many are likely to go home, and far more who might have come will not.

    Of course immigration is the one way we were staying afloat - as wealthier and more educated Americans have fewer children, our future demographics are very bad (too many old people who are not really producing and too few young people who are).

    Europe is having the same problem - we were going to fair better though because we immigrate our young, whereas they actively keep immigrants from normal society.

    But leave it to Obama to screw up their reason for coming here along with everything else...

  • XM||

    The conservative side of the internet and news (for the most part) have accurately represented the CBO report - that it is a disincentive for work. They'll still argue it's a job killer, of course.

    Sorry, but the equivalency game doesn't work in that case.

  • BillEverman||

    In defense of the "job killer" account, I understand that the CBO report projects that people will leave their jobs or cut their hours voluntarily, and that that is not equivalent to a layoff. But the CBO is saying this will result in a "loss" of the equivalent man-hours of 2.5 million full-time employees. So the question becomes, what happens after someone voluntarily cuts their hours or quits? Does their employer just suddenly decide that they are better off without them? Normally, the employer would replace the person or the hours with another employee, or adding hours to current staff...but that would result in no net loss of man-hours, and actually lower the unemployment rate. But that doesn't seem to correspond with what the CBO is describing, which is why it sounds like a "job killer".

  • Alan||

    "A world in which nobody has to do unpleasant work is a world in which you ride to the park on a unicorn."

    Actually, we are already having problems due to technological unemployment. As robotics and artificial intelligence advance, we may find that humans don't have any jobs left to do, which produces its own problems - as most people have a psychological need for meaningful work.

    We will probably find something useful for people to do, though it may be in the arts rather than, say, sewage maintenance - but it probably isn't a bad idea to start reducing the number of hours that we consider the baseline for full time work. I consider the decoupling of healthcare from employment to be a no brainer on this front - though I would prefer not to have the subsidies. Even so, it is possibly still the least bad option given the current political realities.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    ...it probably isn't a bad idea to start reducing the number of hours that we consider the baseline for full time work.

    First, is absolutely is a bad idea to reduce the number of hours or work as it will absolutely reduce the total amount of economic activity and innovation possible.

    Second, even if I were to assume decreasing hours would have an overall net positive right now - I would absolutely disagree that government coercion, in the form of incentives not to work, or regulation/taxation which kills jobs, or whatever, would be doubly as wrong.

    But assuming working less would be good is like those international business articles where they cannot seem to understand how France doesn't have near the same productivity increases that the US has.

    Umm.... could it be US citizens tend to work more?

    Nah - it's racist or something.

    But irregardless, the point is there is an real and known downside to reducing hours as it would by it's very definition reduce what could be accomplished.

    Assuming otherwise seems odd....

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Sorry - two more thoughts - on psychological need, I agree - which is another reason reducing hours to the point of reducing jobs available will have other negative consequences which are so far unseen, even if one assumes those not working gain subsidies in a level that keeps their income as it was when they were working.

    Secondly - I don't see why the arts is somehow better than sewage maintenance and I would make the argument that people are allowed to go into the arts right now - with thousands making millions, and millions making thousands, daily in today's society.

    If you have the talent, desire, etc - you can go into the arts right now.

    Though don't get me wrong - artists contributions to society are great and should not be diminished - I think Americans are all better off for Mark Twain.

    However, in the long run, sewage maintenance is a requirement for society's health - taken from that vantage point if you had only one sewage person and only one writer in your town and that writer was Shakespeare - that town would still be much worse off from sewage guy's death than the writer's.

    Though I do agree that that job and others will likely be automated in the future, and overall that's a positive thing when people don't have to work in those conditions - it's still a real job, which produces real known benefits and will always be required (even if robots end up with the job in the future).

  • cheap soccer jerseys||

    The news media is distracted by the fact that Republicans are telling a whopper about jobs, and are completely ignoring the fact that liberals are openly championing encouraging able-bodied adults to go on the dole.

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