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Official SCOTUS Thread - 2013 Term

  • frode said... (original post)

    What is "just" also includes what Congress is allowed to do by the Constitution.

    The money for the care HAS to come from somewhere doesnt it? Why shouldnt Govt be able to decide if its the individual or the tax payer? Who should decide?

    This post was edited by 1thegame 4 years ago

  • frode said... (original post)

    Ok so because I don't have a solution to the problem, people should be forced to buy insurance? What kind of logic is that?

    Guess what, I dont have a solution either. So if neither of us has a solution, I guess we have to get behind one of the options on the table, because the problem isnt going to go away. People will always get sick and someone will always have to pay for their care. I would prefer for that someone to not be taxpayers, despite the fact that I'm not crazy about the idea of "forcing" people to buy health insurance......

  • 1thegame said... (original post)

    The question is always what is fair and just. Your biggest problem in this thread is that you forget that very basic principle.

    I'm going to completely jettison my whole concept of what I believe to be "fair" and just go with whatever you think.

    Actually, I'll let it be legislated for me.

    Sweet, I feel so much better.

  • neal990

    frode said... (original post)

    Answer: It's moronic liberal logic. Yes, there is no good solution, so let's raise taxes and put a little more milk in the government teat so we can squeeze it harder!!

    It's politicians' favorite syllogism: Something must be done. This is something. Therefore, it must be done.

    1thegame, even though I would be against it on principle, I'd have less of a problem of an individual mandate at the state level. States have far more general "police" powers than the federal government by design. So for instance, Massachusetts can constitutionally mandate that its citizens by healthcare. The federal government cannot.

  • frode said... (original post)

    Making people buy insurance=raising their taxes. The taxpayer is paying either way

    Not following you here at all. Buying insurance and paying taxes are two different things with different results for the individual. I dont see how they are =

  • neal990 said... (original post)

    So for instance, Massachusetts can constitutionally mandate that its citizens by healthcare. The federal government cannot.

    ORLY?

  • neal990 said... (original post)

    It's politicians' favorite syllogism: Something must be done. This is something. Therefore, it must be done.

    Are you suggesting that nothing needs to be done and that this is all political bullshit? I mean something does need to be done, right? Are tax payers not currently footing the bill for the medical treatment of uninsured people that cant pay for their own care? Is that not a problem for society?

  • rewsde said... (original post)

    ORLY?

    Uh, yes, RLY. The federal government is one of enumerated powers (i.e. it can only do something if the Constitution specifically authorizes it). The 10th Amendment states that those powers not granted to the federal government by the Constitution are reserved to the states and the people. The Massachusetts constitution does not structure the state government as one of enumerated powers. Therefore, it can pretty much do anything unless their constitution specifically forbids it.

  • neal990 said... (original post)


    1thegame, even though I would be against it on principle, I'd have less of a problem of an individual mandate at the state level.

    To be honest with you, I don't think its that interesting to hear about what you're against. I'm much more interested to hear what you're for. The default is that sick and injured poor uninsured people get treatment and that the costs get paid by taxpayers.

    I think we can agree that people will always get sick/injured. We can agree that society has no appetite to deny people emergency medical care. We can agree that someone will always have to be on the hook to pay for that care.

    The only real question is who should pay, the individual (through direct payment or insurance) or society (through taxes). You really want it to be society? If that is your position/what you are "for", please tell me why you think its better....

  • neal990

    1thegame said... (original post)

    Are you suggesting that nothing needs to be done and that this is all political bullshit? I mean something does need to be done, right? Are tax payers not currently footing the bill for the medical treatment of uninsured people that cant pay for their own care? Is that not a problem for society?

    I assume you mean tax payers are footing the bill for uninsured that CAN pay for their own care. Because tax payers are probably always going to foot the bill for those who CANT pay for their own care. The mandate is trying to get that hypothetical 25 year old who is making enough to afford healthcare but chooses to spend that money elsewhere into the system. Like tent says, those are the people the insurance company wants signed up because for most of them the money they pay in premiums will be much greater than the amount the insurance company has to spend on their care. The insurance company can stomach covering high risk people (people with preexisting conditions) if the government forces healthy, low risk people into the pool as well.

    It's one method to (hypothetically) drive costs down, or at least keep them from rising so quickly. But it doesn't mean it is the best. And even if it IS the best, it doesn't mean it passes constitutional muster. The constitution doesn't ask what is most convenient or expedient, it asks what is the government allowed to do.

  • tent84

    1thegame said... (original post)

    To be honest with you, I don't think its that interesting to hear about what you're against. I'm much more interested to hear what you're for.

    I'm for limiting the powers of the federal government as mandated in the Constitution. You aren't. Thats okay, we can disagree on that.

  • tent84 said... (original post)

    I'm for limiting the powers of the federal government as mandated in the Constitution. You aren't. Thats okay, we can disagree on that.

    Translation: fuck personal responsibility, let taxpayers keep paying the medical bills for the uninsured, even as medical costs rise and the ranks of the unemployed/uninsured grow.

    Cool, sounds like you have it all figured out.

  • neal990 said... (original post)

    I assume you mean tax payers are footing the bill for uninsured that CAN pay for their own care. Because tax payers are probably always going to foot the bill for those who CANT pay for their own care.

    No, I mean tax payers footing the bill for uninsured that CANT pay for their own care. You know, people that have 30 bucks a month to pay for insurance but dont have 200K to pay for a week long stay at the ER (i didnt research those numbers so dont get all technical on this, the point is that monthly insurance premiums are something that many can afford and trips to the ER are something that many cant, so taxpayers ends up stuck with the bill)

  • tent84

    If you don't like what the Constitution says, there's a process by which it can be amended.

  • PaulUMD

    1thegame said... (original post)

    Translation: fuck personal responsibility, let taxpayers keep paying the medical bills for the uninsured, even as medical costs rise and the ranks of the unemployed/uninsured grow.

    Cool, sounds like you have it all figured out.

    It doesn't have to get personal, man.

    But I think you've hit an interesting point in terms of conservatives here. It's picking between a pre-New Deal interpretation of the Commerce Clause and the idea of personal responsibility in terms of insuring one's self for medical costs. As I said before, many conservatives have lauded the idea of a mandate in the past, including the father of the individual mandate, one Mittens Romney. Taking out the politics of it all, it's an interesting philosophical exercise for someone of conservative leanings, I would think.

  • Torts you are "fine" with denying people health care if they do not have insurance. That makes you unrealistic since it is not going to happen. Federal law-as you know or should know-requires medical providers to provide emergency health care to patients and to stabilize them without asking for proof of insurance. Poor people use emergency rooms at hospitals all the time as their dr.'s office for the flu etc. hospital cannot just turn them away because they have to 1st make sure it is "just the flu" and even if it is, sometimes the flu kills.

    so you have to operate in a real world:

    1. people without health insurance will get treated regardless of whether they have it or not.

    2. treating people in emergency room settings for non medical emergencies is inefficient and creates waste.

    Now, onto the legal argument. There is no doubt a state could require you to buy health insurance. A state requires you to buy car insurance, and it could require you to do a lot of things under its police power.

    Basic constitutional law though is the federal govt is one of LIMITED enumerated powers-unlike the states that have a police power. Federal power has expanded, however, over the decades through liberal interpretation of the commerce clause. Child labor laws(a good thing) are federal regulation of a traditional state area(labor)
    under the commerce clause. Conservatives have always thought the 10th amendment should limit the commerce clause more than it does.

    There is no doubt that under an expanded view of the commerce clause, the regulation of Health care affects interstate commerce and would give Congress the power to act. The issue is what right, if any, comes into play that should curtail the application of the commerce clause when congress acts to force people to buy health insurance?

    Congress has the obvious power to tax its citizens. And that also forces people to part with money for the "general welfare." Congress could tax(there is no question about this) people and use the money to provide health coverage. So can it do directly what it can most assuredly do indirectly? Is there a substantive difference between a new tax(health insurance tax) and requiring people to buy health insurance?

    Hard to say what the current court will do. If it follows precedent i think the law is const. But the majority of the Court does not particularly like Obama, and you could see them saying the tenth amendment prevents the use of the commerce clause in this situation, and that statute before it does not use a "tax mechanism" that would be permissible under congress' taxing power, so that issue is not before the Court. In other words, the Court would say that the states have the power to force its citizens
    to buy health insurance under its inherent police power, but the federal govt does not under the commerce clause. That the federal govt by design is one of limited- not all encompassing powers.

    Many of Pitt's 58 "rushing attempts" were the result qb Tino Sunseri fleeing the pocket like a man whose clothes were on fire.

  • I'm not sure why we are making this so hard. Lets just say we give everyone $250 a month to buy health insurance from an insurance company if they don't have it. Lets say 30 million have no insurance(i think that's the number right?) that's 90 billion a year. Done and done.

  • dixonownsyou

    sniper_terp said... (original post)

    I'm not sure why we are making this so hard. Lets just say we give everyone $250 a month to buy health insurance from an insurance company if they don't have it. Lets say 30 million have no insurance(i think that's the number right?) that's 90 billion a year. Done and done.

    Would the idea be that they would have to use the $250 for and only for health insurance? You'd have to use a debit card model, ala new food stamps. You'd also have to insure somehow--perhaps using similar language to the Obama healthcare bill--that people couldn't be turned down buying insurance because of preexisting conditions.

    Or else the $250 per month is worthless.

    The $250 per month would be a good enough subsidy for younger, healthier people, but for older people/those more prone to sickness, I'm not sure that would cover your premium. It would subsidize it decently, though. I'd be interested in looking at the numbers for average monthly premium costs for an older American vs. lower monthly premiums + high deductibles.

    Interesting idea, though.

    "And I try to har-mo-nize with songs the lonesome sparrow sings... There are no kings inside the Gates of Eden."

  • frode said... (original post)

    I'm fine with denying services to people if they don't pay, so I refuse the way you have the decision structured.

    Under that premise I would be fine with it too...but that would require overturning a bunch of pre-existing laws currently on the books. You're argument isn't valid because what you're saying isn't in question and would need to be to make your end result a viable option...it isn't.

    9/21/2010...RIP Old IMS.

  • One point that I think is being missed here is that a majority of our unisured citizens are not homeless or incapable of covering their own medical expense/health insurance premiums. They actually make other decisions with their money, be it cars/vacation/social activities, house/rent payments, etc. Those people making such a decision do so knowing full well that they are exposed to potential costs if something catatrophic happens. My feeling is they need to deal with the consequences if it does and not rely on other Americans as a backstop. I guess that means personal responsibility.

  • PaulUMD said... (original post)

    It doesn't have to get personal, man.

    But I think you've hit an interesting point in terms of conservatives here. It's picking between a pre-New Deal interpretation of the Commerce Clause and the idea of personal responsibility in terms of insuring one's self for medical costs. As I said before, many conservatives have lauded the idea of a mandate in the past, including the father of the individual mandate, one Mittens Romney. Taking out the politics of it all, it's an interesting philosophical exercise for someone of conservative leanings, I would think.

    I wasnt being personal at all, he is entitled to think that his interpretation of the constitution is what really matters in this discussion, as opposed to you know, actually trying to discuss ideas around fixing a huge societal problem.

    Here's the thing, the philosophical debate has already happened. The real philosophical debate in this is what to do with people that cant pay for medical care, refuse the care or put it on societies dime. That question has been answered. There is no appetite in this society (from the far left, the far right or anyone in between) to refuse emergency medical care to people that cant pay for it.

    The only debate that remains is who should pay for it. Somehow "conservatives" that constantly rail against big govt and laud personal responsibility want to put it on govt/taxpayers to pay for it and "librerals" want individuals to be on the hook for their own health care costs. Its wacky....I get why its this way, but its still wacky. Just goes to show that political positions are always changing and that liberal policies can become conservative and vice versa and its like people dont even notice, they are so tied to the idea of political party = identity....

  • JTerp said... (original post)

    One point that I think is being missed here is that a majority of our unisured citizens are not homeless or incapable of covering their own medical expense/health insurance premiums. They actually make other decisions with their money, be it cars/vacation/social activities, house/rent payments, etc. Those people making such a decision do so knowing full well that they are exposed to potential costs if something catatrophic happens. My feeling is they need to deal with the consequences if it does and not rely on other Americans as a backstop. I guess that means personal responsibility.

    Right. And even those people who would choose to decline HC and do make a decent middle class wage still will NEVER be able to afford open heart surgery or a devastating car wreck. My father is a middle class regular Joe and had an accident this summer that thankfully was covered by workmans comp. He shattered his spine and suffered a stroke in the process. So far the bills are somewhere around 250K. If he didn't have insurance then there would be no way a retired guy like him could ever pay these bills even if he sold his house, cashed in his minimal saving and sold his possessions. I mean we're not talking about COULD he pay for it here...we're talking about NEVER being able to pay for it until the day he dies.

    So what happens to those people who are healthy one day and have a horrible accident the next while they CHOOSE to not have HC? We pay for it...we all do. Why is that fair? My Dad has insurance as did his company and I'm thankful he/they did not only because if he ever gets back to 100% he won't have to live out of his car...but also because he was responsible enough to not lump those unpaid bills on me and my kids.

    9/21/2010...RIP Old IMS.

  • bmacumd said... (original post)

    This isn't entirely true. Over the last 100 years there powers of our government have grown with the realities and complexities of our civilization that did not exist when the constitution was founded. Just the same that the 2nd amendment allows your or I to own a gun since we potential members of a "well regulated militia" (although in 2008 in the most recent case, the Court upheld the right to bear arms even if you are not a member of a militia). So there is progression in terms of the meaning of certain amendments and clauses.

    Congress and the Courts have allowed the Commerce Clause to expand in its meaning, with the advancements of our Union.

    I have a hard time believing this will ever be permanently struck down and having Ken Cuccinelli (His best quote....."The longer you delay the commencement of sexual activity, you have healthier and happier kids and more successful kids.") being the face of opposition is laughable beyond reproach.

    Ah, yes, the good old "living Constitution" theory. Reminds me of what Captain Barbossa says about the Pirate Code in Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl - "the code is more what you'd call 'guidelines' than actual rules." Me, I prefer a "dead Constitution." The Founders provided a mechanism for "progression" - it's called the amendment process. Once you depart from the original intent of the document's authors, judges have no reference point from which to interpret the Constitution other than their own idea of "fairness" and "progress."

  • neal990

    1thegame said... (original post)

    The only debate that remains is who should pay for it. Somehow "conservatives" that constantly rail against big govt and laud personal responsibility want to put it on govt/taxpayers to pay for it and "librerals" want individuals to be on the hook for their own health care costs. Its wacky....I get why its this way, but its still wacky. Just goes to show that political positions are always changing and that liberal policies can become conservative and vice versa and its like people dont even notice, they are so tied to the idea of political party = identity....

    Characterizing this healthcare bill as promoting "personal responsibility" instead of putting it on the government and tax payers is a pretty big stretch. Yes, it compels individuals to buy health insurance. But most will have their employers paying 2/3 of their premiums, shielding them from the true cost. And everyone will be buying insurance in a heavily subsidized market, also shielding people from the true costs. I get the point you are trying to make, but let's not act like this is some huge welfare reform telling people to get off their lazy asses, dig deep into their pockets, and lift themselves up by their bootstraps. The individual mandate is just saying "you're now forced to enter the heavily [taxpayer] subsidized and gerrymandered market we have created. Bring in your employer if you can."

  • frode said... (original post)

    Gov't making you buy something is the same as the gov't taking your money and buying you what they want you to buy.

    I dont think its the same at all

    - Most choose to buy insurance even when its not required and most would not choose to pay taxes if they were not required
    - Insurance directly benefits the insured, taxes are an indirect benefit

    bottom line is that these are pretty big differences.