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Official SCOTUS Thread - 2013 Term

  • tent84

    1thegame said... (original post)

    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.

    And that's how we get the government that we have today -- by viewing the Constitution as some technicality to be ignored or creatively worked around rather than as the guiding document for how our government should work.

  • 1thegame said... (original post)

    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....

    There are two independent issues here - what is the best way to solve the problem, and whether the solution one proposes is one that Congress has the constitutional power to implement. It's not an either-or thing, like one matters more than the other. You can have the best policy idea in the world, but if Congress doesn't have the power to do it, then it's just an academic debate. Just look at the Morrison case - very few people thought that the Violence Against Women Act was a bad idea on policy grounds, but the Act was overturned by the Supreme Court because it did not fall within Congress' enumerated powers. So, yeah, it's important to have the policy debate, but whether it's constitutional or not is an independent concern. And in these lawsuits, it's the only relevant concern.

  • Do people seriously not understand that the constitutional question and the "what should we do instead?" question are completely unrelated and don't have to be answered together?

  • neal990 said... (original post)

    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."

    you're talking at a much more specific policy level than I am. I'm trying to take a step back from all of the specifics and focus on the core issue at hand, which is that somebodys gotta pay for the medical treatment of the uninsured and I want that somebody to be the individual instead of the taxpayer. The specifics around how to best make that happen are certainly up for debate....

  • neal990

    Healthcare costs in this country would probably plummet if Congress commissioned a group of nutritionists and dieticians to come up with a national diet and then mandated that every American must abide by that diet. Similarly, and probably more realistically, Congress could mandate that every American go out and purchase a gym membership. In the aggregate, people making the decision not to purchase gym memberships are imposing huge costs on our system.

    Just because these ideas would work doesn't mean Congress has the authority to pursue them. [Although if the individual mandate passes constitutional muster then the gym membership thing likely would as well.]

  • What is the actual law on what hospitals have to do without asking for proof of ability to pay? I mean, clearly they don't have to attend to every need of every citizen - i.e. you can't get free cancer drugs from the hospital if you can't afford them. Is it something like they just have to get the patient to a "stable" condition? I'm just trying to get an accurate picture of what "taxpayers" are on the hook for in relation to the uninsured. Those defending Obamacare are making it sound like taxpayers are footing the bill for comprehensive medical care for these people. I think that's clearly not right, but I don't know where the line is between what kinds of medical treatment uninsured people are entitled to under the law and what they're not entitled to.

  • dixonownsyou said... (original post)

    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.

    No it would be like you sign up for open enrollments at work. You go to the computer and it gives you a list of choices to pick.

    While 250 a month wouldn't cover someone who is 80 years old that price is offset with family of 5 that gets covered. When I applied for kaiser a few years back my son and I were 400 a month. 250 is just a round number I just thought up. But if you are in a pool like work it offsets. Again reading through this mess of a debate is all about over reaching govt vs evil people who don't care about sick children. Lets just do it my way and I'm sure 80-90% of people will be happy. No one wants Americans dieing in the streets.

  • 1thegame said... (original post)

    you're talking at a much more specific policy level than I am. I'm trying to take a step back from all of the specifics and focus on the core issue at hand, which is that somebodys gotta pay for the medical treatment of the uninsured and I want that somebody to be the individual instead of the taxpayer. The specifics around how to best make that happen are certainly up for debate....

    The trouble I have with this is the following - if the "uninsured" is uninsured because he is too poor to buy insurance, he's probably going to be eligible for Medicaid or eligible for significant subsidies under ObamaCare, in which case the "taxpayer" is picking up the bill anyways (neal referred to this earlier). If the "uninsured" is uninsured not because he can't afford buy insurance, but because he chooses not to, then he should be able to cover his medical bills out of pocket in the case of illness, in which case the taxpayer is not on the hook. Who are the "individuals" that are not paying for treatment now that are being forced to pay under ObamaCare?

  • MisterNiceGuy said... (original post)

    What is the actual law on what hospitals have to do without asking for proof of ability to pay? I mean, clearly they don't have to attend to every need of every citizen - i.e. you can't get free cancer drugs from the hospital if you can't afford them. Is it something like they just have to get the patient to a "stable" condition? I'm just trying to get an accurate picture of what "taxpayers" are on the hook for in relation to the uninsured. Those defending Obamacare are making it sound like taxpayers are footing the bill for comprehensive medical care for these people. I think that's clearly not right, but I don't know where the line is between what kinds of medical treatment uninsured people are entitled to under the law and what they're not entitled to.

    i think the simple answer is emergency care. Obv, thats a broad category and not black and white to define, but thats what tax payers are on the hook for. a gunshot wound, a car accident, a severe respiratory ailment etc etc. and its costing taxpayers tons of money right now, because the care is getting more expensive and the number of uninsured is getting higher along with unemployment rates. Right now taxpayers foot the bill and the bill just keeps growing and growing.....

  • MisterNiceGuy said... (original post)

    If the "uninsured" is uninsured not because he can't afford buy insurance, but because he chooses not to, then he should be able to cover his medical bills out of pocket in the case of illness, in which case the taxpayer is not on the hook. Who are the "individuals" that are not paying for treatment now that are being forced to pay under ObamaCare?

    I think you misunderstand the reality of the expenses. A young healthy person can get medical insurance for what 100 bucks a month? 150? maybe even less. A bill that many "can" afford to pay. But if he gets really sick or into a bad accident and has to spend a week in the ER it can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. At that point, the bill is too much for him and it falls on taxpayers to pay it. Thats the problem at hand.

    Kaiser used a real world example about his dad earlier in this thread.....

  • frode said... (original post)

    LOL at forcing people to buy insurance being fair or just.

    This already exists.

  • frode said... (original post)

    Lol at the notion of evil americans who don't care about people "dieing" in the streets.

    I just meant that's what you get called by some if you are against Obama care.

  • 1thegame said... (original post)

    I think you misunderstand the reality of the expenses. A young healthy person can get medical insurance for what 100 bucks a month? 150? maybe even less. A bill that many "can" afford to pay. But if he gets really sick or into a bad accident and has to spend a week in the ER it can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. At that point, the bill is too much for him and it falls on taxpayers to pay it. Thats the problem at hand.

    Kaiser used a real world example about his dad earlier in this thread.....

    It's really hard for any person, regardless of youth, to get a decent policy (i.e, not high-deductible) for $100/mo. $150 is probably reasonable for young, healthy men. For women, young = child-bearing age, and you can't get anything decent for so little money.

    Obviously if the employer subsidizes it, then the costs could be affordable, but I think the public has a pretty skewed idea about the cost of health insurance for unemployed or self-employed people.

  • bmacumd said... (original post)

    This already exists.

    Please, for the love of God, don't use car insurance as your proof here.

    Even ignoring the other logical fallacies, that's still state government, not federal.

    This post was edited by tecmoHOOperbowl 4 years ago

  • neal990 said... (original post)

    Healthcare costs in this country would probably plummet if Congress commissioned a group of nutritionists and dieticians to come up with a national diet and then mandated that every American must abide by that diet. Similarly, and probably more realistically, Congress could mandate that every American go out and purchase a gym membership. In the aggregate, people making the decision not to purchase gym memberships are imposing huge costs on our system.

    Just because these ideas would work doesn't mean Congress has the authority to pursue them. [Although if the individual mandate passes constitutional muster then the gym membership thing likely would as well.]

    Right, just like car accident deaths would go down if the speed limit was lowered to 35. There is an obvious balancing act between what is good for society and what is good for the individual. "Forcing" people to buy health insurance (something that benefits them, doesnt directly hurt their liberty in terms of their day to day life, and only affects their pocketbook) in order to keep taxpayers from having to foot the bill for inevitable medical emergencies is walking a fine line for sure. But again, the reality is that someone has to pay, I would rather that fell on the individual than taxpayers. Taxpayers need to be protected from being taken advantage of too.....

  • MisterNiceGuy said... (original post)

    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."

    Okay, I'm going to seriously respond to somebody who thinks "Living Constitution" theory reminds them of a Disney movie based on a ride at Disney World?

    So the only time our federal government does anything is if there is an amendment to do so?

    Also, as much as auto insurance is mandated by individual states, most state require motorists to have car insurance. Some states are stricter then others for what is required. Nobody screams about this, or their screams fall on deaf ears.

    I fundamentally would be opposed to this for the following reasons. There are too many states who would refuse to enact mandatory health insurance. Why? Because they are literally dumb and uneducated. These same state legislatures are so backwards they want creationism to be taught in the classroom and our country will be a bunch split between educated people in the northeast (those with reputable college degrees and understandings that the world does not revolve around a religious fable) and those who think the world was created in 7 days and a 300 year old man lived inside of a whale. If you literally believe that the world was created in 7 days then your opinion does not count in anything that affects others. Period. End of story.

    So, yes, I know our founders (community organizers, elitists) would laugh at these f'ing rednecks and half-ass law school grads like Ken Cuccinelli who are backwards to common sense on 75% of real issues.

  • 1thegame said... (original post)

    I think you misunderstand the reality of the expenses. A young healthy person can get medical insurance for what 100 bucks a month? 150? maybe even less. A bill that many "can" afford to pay. But if he gets really sick or into a bad accident and has to spend a week in the ER it can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. At that point, the bill is too much for him and it falls on taxpayers to pay it. Thats the problem at hand.

    Kaiser used a real world example about his dad earlier in this thread.....

    Well, right, Kaiser's example is what prompted my question. However, how much of the 250k would have been covered if his dad had been uninsured? That's the question. I doubt it would be anywhere close to the full 250k. That amount is, what, 6 months' worth of medical bills? If that is at all representative of a catastrophic injury (stroke + shattered spine sounds pretty catastrophic to me - Kaiser, hope your dad is recovering well, all politics aside), then I think it's a little extreme to talk about a week in the ER costing hundreds of thousands of dollars as a typical case. Either way, I don't have the data, but I just find it hard to believe that there is this epidemic of young, healthy (voluntarily) uninsured people experiencing catastrophic injuries and racking up $300k bills at the hospital on the taxpayer's dime. By the way, I am no xenophobic nativist (I supported the Bush immigration plan), but nobody is talking about the cost that the millions of illegal immigrants impose when they go to the ER. As far as I am aware, ObamaCare doesn't do anything to address that issue.

  • States require auto insurance for motorists. Not everyone. Any citizen is free to choose not to buy auto insurance.

    Even if someone grants that forcing the public to buy health insurance is in the country's best interest (and I disagree with that wholeheartedly), if it's not constitutional, it's not constitutional. Obviously, that's open to interpretation and will come through the courts in the upcoming months/years. However, I'm sure you see the myriad problems in allowing people to legislate around the constitution for the "good of the country." If the Constitution is standing in the way of legitimate progress, then the mechanism exists to amend it. No one on this thread is saying that the Constitution has to expressly permit something for a law to be passed.

  • bmacumd said... (original post)

    Okay, I'm going to seriously respond to somebody who thinks "Living Constitution" theory reminds them of a Disney movie based on a ride at Disney World?

    So the only time our federal government does anything is if there is an amendment to do so?

    Also, as much as auto insurance is mandated by individual states, most state require motorists to have car insurance. Some states are stricter then others for what is required. Nobody screams about this, or their screams fall on deaf ears.

    I fundamentally would be opposed to this for the following reasons. There are too many states who would refuse to enact mandatory health insurance. Why? Because they are literally dumb and uneducated. These same state legislatures are so backwards they want creationism to be taught in the classroom and our country will be a bunch split between educated people in the northeast (those with reputable college degrees and understandings that the world does not revolve around a religious fable) and those who think the world was created in 7 days and a 300 year old man lived inside of a whale. If you literally believe that the world was created in 7 days then your opinion does not count in anything that affects others. Period. End of story.

    So, yes, I know our founders (community organizers, elitists) would laugh at these f'ing rednecks and half-ass law school grads like Ken Cuccinelli who are backwards to common sense on 75% of real issues.

    Do you realize how arrogant and condescending you sound?

  • I think it's awesome that because there are a handful of legislators in Kansas that want only 7-day creationism to be taught, we should refuse to allow states generally to make their own decisions about health care.

  • neal990

    bmacumd said... (original post)

    I fundamentally would be opposed to this for the following reasons. There are too many states who would refuse to enact mandatory health insurance. Why? Because they are literally dumb and uneducated. These same state legislatures are so backwards they want creationism to be taught in the classroom and our country will be a bunch split between educated people in the northeast (those with reputable college degrees and understandings that the world does not revolve around a religious fable) and those who think the world was created in 7 days and a 300 year old man lived inside of a whale. If you literally believe that the world was created in 7 days then your opinion does not count in anything that affects others. Period. End of story.

    Your argument is that, if I'm following you correctly, if states mandate insurance rather than the federal government the country will be divided into two groups- one that is great (the northeast, evidently) and one that believes a 300 year old man lived inside of a whale?

    If state legislatures are so dangerous, why not have everything administered at the federal level? Can the same deliberative bodies that are literally dumb and uneducated be trusted with all of the responsibilities they currently have?

  • To clarify...the 250K was a bill for 19 days in the hospital, the surgeries, the helicopter and the months of rehab he's been doing from home with in-home nurses. If his stroke would have been serious (it really didn't affect him very much thank Scott) then the hospital stay would have been much longer and he would have had to have brain surgery and the fee would have been WAY over 500k....probably close to a million.

    To clarify more....his accident was the result of a tree falling on his car during a crazy summer storm while he was stopped in traffic. I bring this up to show that this stuff can happen to anybody and I'm pretty sure we can't mandate trees to check for insurance cards prior to pinning them in the car while breaking their necks.

    IMO...and I know it's my opinion...it just makes more sense that everyone have insurance. Take away for a minute that uninsured people f*ck up my taxes....doesn't it just make sense that a freak accident can't cause a family to lose everything in a heartbeat?....while battling something like rehab?

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

  • tecmoHOOperbowl said... (original post)

    It's really hard for any person, regardless of youth, to get a decent policy (i.e, not high-deductible) for $100/mo. $150 is probably reasonable for young, healthy men. For women, young = child-bearing age, and you can't get anything decent for so little money.

    Obviously if the employer subsidizes it, then the costs could be affordable, but I think the public has a pretty skewed idea about the cost of health insurance for unemployed or self-employed people.

    I said $250 and its possible. 4 years ago it was 400 for me and my son. Even if thats too low, up the price it costs. It will be 100x better than whats happening now and cheaper.

  • MisterNiceGuy said... (original post)

    What is the actual law on what hospitals have to do without asking for proof of ability to pay? I mean, clearly they don't have to attend to every need of every citizen - i.e. you can't get free cancer drugs from the hospital if you can't afford them. Is it something like they just have to get the patient to a "stable" condition? I'm just trying to get an accurate picture of what "taxpayers" are on the hook for in relation to the uninsured. Those defending Obamacare are making it sound like taxpayers are footing the bill for comprehensive medical care for these people. I think that's clearly not right, but I don't know where the line is between what kinds of medical treatment uninsured people are entitled to under the law and what they're not entitled to.

    I am a nice guy.

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

  • sniper_terp said... (original post)

    I said $250 and its possible. 4 years ago it was 400 for me and my son. Even if thats too low, up the price it costs. It will be 100x better than whats happening now and cheaper.

    I was replying to 1thegame's post, not yours.