Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Monday, December 13th, 2010.

The Health Care Law Is Not Struck Down

Obama Administration

Some headlines are saying that a federal court has struck down the health care law. Some others are saying part of the law is “struck down.”

Here’s what happened. A federal district judge in Virginia declared the individual mandate to be unconstitutional. However, two other federal district judges have declared it to be constitutional. We’re far from the last word, however.

Also, according to Ezra Klein, the Virginia judge refused to strike down the entire law, which is want the prosecutors wanted. He also refused to stop implementation of any part of the health care reform law, pending appeal. Nothing really has changed.

This eventually will go to the Supreme Court. Of course, just about anything could happen there.

Update: Gawker says the judge in this case owns a piece of a GOP consulting firm.

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When Push Comes to Shove

Obama Administration

Cape Cod police and fire officials say there have been two recent acts of arson — one failed, the other burned a house under construction — in which the arsonist left a message saying “[bleep] the rich.”

Naturally, the Right Blosophere puts this down to class warfare, instigated by liberal envy and resentment. The Jammie Wearing Fool writes,

I blame the class warfare rhetoric of the Democrats for these incidents of arson. Maybe if the left didn’t demonize wealthy people so much they wouldn’t stoke such hatred in their supporters. … Socialist blowhard Bernie Sanders was unavailable for comment.

I guess if it weren’t for leftists rudely pointing out that America is bankrupting itself with tax breaks to rich people that do little good to stimulate the economy, these things wouldn’t happen.

The BooMan disagrees

Or, maybe, if wealthy people hadn’t enjoyed super low tax rates for the last thirty years while we ran the government on people’s Social Security money, we wouldn’t be so upset about the idea of you using our Social Security money to pay off the debt you ran up making sure the world is safe for ExxonMobil. It couldn’t be that this random arsonist is actually pissed off about getting hosed, could it? Because I know plenty of people are about to blow a gasket at how badly this country is rigged against working people. Even when we have a Democratic president and huge Democratic majorities in Congress, we still can’t get decent reforms and we have to settle for half-ass. So, yeah, blame it on some Jewish guy from Vermont. I’m sure Bernie Sanders is to blame for every out-of-work malcontent who is fantasizing about slitting the throats of the top 2% that just got a near-trillion dollar bailout in the form of lower income and estate taxes.

In case any righties drop by here, let me be clear that no one is advocating actual arson or throat-slitting.

However, since I recently argued that there is only a difference in degree between censorship by threats of violence and censorship by threats of defunding, I suppose I should address the charge that progressive rhetoric might incite violence against wealthy people.

Rhetoric can incite violence; no question about it. As far as I’m concerned, Bill O’Reilly bears some responsibility for the murder of Dr. George Tiller.

On the other hand — among other things, Bernie Sanders said,

“How can I get by on one house?” Sanders said. “I need five houses, ten houses! I need three jet planes to take me all over the world! Sorry, American people. We’ve got the money, we’ve got the power, we’ve got the lobbyists here and on Wall Street. Tough luck. That’s the world, get used to it. Rich get richer. Middle class shrinks.”

That may be inflammatory, but it’s the truth. The middle class is shrinking in the U.S., which is a bad omen for all of us.

On the other hand, O’Reilly was telling his audience that Dr. George Tiller aborted healthy babies about to be born. If true, that would have been a clear violation of Kansas law. There is no evidence that ever stood up in court that Tiller violated the law.

Getting back to the topic — there is nothing so critical to the long-term health and stability of a nation than a stable middle class. Even if they are able to suppress the speech of progressives, if the economic trends of the past 40 years continue, sooner or later the rich will be forced to live within armed fortresses, or on their own private islands. And that’s not a threat, righties; that’s the way the world is.

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Krugman Reads WaPo

Obama Administration

The Doom of Broder

Orwellian Centrism

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