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SCOTUS vs ACA

Update VII: Well, he’s wrong about this:

Boehner: “What I’m concerned about is a law that’s driving up the cost of health care, and making it harder for employers to hire people.”

1.) The LAW doesn’t drive up the cost of health care.  Rather, it does absolutely nothing to rein costs in.  That’s what makes it such a bad law- it’s every Republican’s wet dream, including the opportunity to now call it a tax!  It will now become the new political football between the parties, replacing the abortion bugaboo that’s just about run its course.  You could say that like Roe v. Wade, the ACA is also one of those laws that is incomplete and doesn’t address the underlying issues but will be used as a proxy until we all cry uncle in 40 years.  Except for the individual mandate, it doesn’t follow any of the principles of good health care policy which would include increased competition and cost controls.

2.) Employers find it hard to hire people because employees insist on getting paid.  Many Republican politicians come from states that once didn’t pay people as a matter of principle.

Boehner: “The number one concern for families and small business people is the cost of health insurance, and the Republican health care reforms will in fact lower health care costs.”

HOW does that work, John?  You guys don’t have a plan that doesn’t leave every man, woman and child vulnerable to high cost insurance plans or no plan at all.  Come to think of it, this is what ACA does too, except now more people will have the opportunity to hand over their small personal fortunes and savings accounts to insurance companies.  What is it Republicans have to be angry about?  You’ve got nearly everything you ever wanted.  Was it because a plan than no one but a Republican could love was forced upon you?
I want to move to Micronesia.

Update VI: I find myself hating the ACA because of the individual mandate even though in principle, I know that universal coverage is needed for a health care policy to be effective.  The reason is that with the ACA, we have disincentivized competition and cost controls.  Without those two pieces in the policy, this thing is going to feel like an albatross around the neck for the consumer and the Democratic party.  Sure, you can go without a high cost policy but when you do end up going to the hospital for some emergency that could have been treated with a lower cost insurance plan, you’re going to get socked with a tax when you are least able to pay it.

The characteristics of good health care policy are not a mystery and yet, this president and his party has declined to implement them in this law.  (See this excellent Frontline episode on what those characteristics are and how our elected officials have completely f^*(ed us over with the ACA)

As Lambert says, you can’t buff a turd.  This is the worst of all worlds for the vast majority of people who are forced to buy insurance on the individual market.  You’re made to feel irresponsible if you don’t put paying your health insurance the very first priority among a long list of monthly expenses.  There is no public option, insurers are not required to offer a reasonably priced option, no Tricare, no Medicare for All, no mandatory expansion of Medicaid. And zero cost controls on hospitals or providers. You’re either a “have” or a “have-not” now.

Bottom line: Poor policy is no substitute for no policy, especially now that it has been “decided” and is “over”.

Thanks Dems.  You deserve everything that’s coming to you.

Can we have Hillary now?!

BTW, Lambert has a very insightful post on what the new socio-political landscape now looks like.

Update V:

Obama: For those who don’t currently have health insurance, “this law provides an array of quality affordable private health insurance plans to choose from.”

Define “affordable” and “quality”, or “array”.  For that matter, why can’t we have a public option?

Obama: “Today the Supreme Court also upheld the principle People who can afford health insurance should take the responsibility to buy health insurance”

Has he seen what individual policies cost in NJ where the “array” starts at about $1000/month for a basic, high deductible policy??  Who the hell can afford that?!

Update IV: Here’s a snippet of Democratic party reactions from a NYTimes summary of the impact of the ruling:

“This decision is a victory for the American people,” said Representative Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader in the House. “With this ruling, Americans will benefit from critical patient protections, lower costs for the middle class [Really?  That's not what my source in the health insurance business is saying.  She says more consolidation among big companies, less competition], more coverage for families and greater accountability for the insurance industry.”

Jim Kessler, the senior vice president of Third Way, a liberal research group in Washington, said the president’s campaign team and his Democratic allies now had a challenge ahead of them to explain the ruling.

“I think it’s a big win for Obama if they handle it right,” Mr. Kessler said. “What they need to be saying is to declare that the fight is now over. It’s been decided by Congress. It’s been decided by the courts. This is now over. It’s in the past.”

You gotta give the Democrats credit for utter cluelessness.  No one does it better.  Yes, let’s craft an expensive, inadequate bill that burdens average Americans with private sector insurance premiums at a premium or slap them with a tax when they don’t pay it, and “tell them tough titties if they don’t like it because it’s over, looooosers.  We’re done talking about conservative non-plans or medicare for all or public options.  Did you hear us, nation?  It’s OVER!  Get in line, let’s Unify.  “People all over the world, join hands, get on a LOVE train, LOVE train…”

(Karl Rove sits in a corner and smiles like a Cheshire Cat.)

In a way, this concretizes (is that a word?) all of the worst aspects of insurance into law. There will be no competition.  Sure, the insurance companies will gripe about not being able to deny coverage mercilessly but they’ll get over it.

{{damn}}  I was really hoping for Tricare.

Update III: IANAL but this tweet by Dave Dayan concerns me greatly:

SCOTUSBlog: “rejection of Commerce Clause and Nec. and Proper Clause… a major blow to Congress’s authority to pass social welfare laws”

Is there a poison pill slipped into this ruling?

Update II:  Ok, I think I see how this is going to play out on Fox:

Supreme Court Rules that Obamacare Tax is Legal.

Well, that didn’t take long:

Obama lied to the American people. Again. He said it wasn’t a tax. Obama lies; freedom dies.

Update: The ruling came down a couple of minutes ago.  The NYTimes editors are reading it now.  You can follow it at the Elections 2012 page.  Also, follow coverage live at SCOTUSblog.

Andy Carvin tweets:

SCOTUSblog: “The individual mandate survives as a tax.” Does that mean the commerce clause version is dead, but a tax version conceivable?

Yes, this makes sense to me.  In a way, we are all forced to pay into the medicare system even if we can’t use it until we get older.  We pay for it with payroll taxes.  So, if the universal mandate is to stand, it has to be through a similar tax.  Otherwise, the ACA would force people to purchase insurance at whatever price the market would bear, which is what is happening now.  So, would this push us *closer* to medicare for all?? What are the chances that this SCOTUS would actually do something positive for the public?

Or, are they anticipating a firestorm from the private sector and libertarians, as Digby has suggested?  This might actually put Obama in more of a pickle this year if the answer is to raise taxes and spurn the free market.  No one would be happy except the uninsured.

And who cares about them, right?

{{sneaky bastards}}

Other questions:

1.) If you don’t have a job, how can you pay the tax?

2.) Would there be a mechanism to pay the tax at time of service?

3.) Would this make it more or less likely that employer provided health insurance benefits would continue?

Amy Howe of SCOTUSblog sums it up this way:

In Plain English: The Affordable Care Act, including its individual mandate that virtually all Americans buy health insurance, is constitutional. There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn’t comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.

Soooo, is this a win for Romney?  Or Obama?  Does this mean that we still have to pay through the nose?  Because that would be a loss for all of us, unless we get to pay a tax at the point of service, which wouldn’t be so bad if you set aside funds to cover it, I guess.  But what kind of money are we talking about here?

*******************************

The ruling should be out sometime this morning and, presumably, all hell will break loose.  If it stays intact, Romney will have to figure out a way of condemning pretty much the same healthcare bill he signed into law in Massachusetts.  If it is rejected, in whole or in part, Obama is going to have to figure out how to run on a new “accomplishment”.

Either way, we’re stuck with outrageous health insurance bills.

So, to the poll:

What’s that you say, Bernie?  Medicare for all?  It’s short, it’s got a good beat, you can dance to it:

And the military has socialized medicine.  {{snort!}}  Yep, pretty much.  I was raised on socialized medicine.

Jeffrey Toobin weighs in.  He thinks the individual mandate is in jeopardy based on oral arguments.

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43 Responses

  1. I don’t have a clue. As soon as I start to make a guess, I change my mind.

  2. I’m wondering if Obama was signaling something by wearing a Grey tie yesterday.

    • LOL! Tie semiphore.

      It’s the blue tie we have to watch for. Blue ties scream “Trust me!”

      No word from the kid yet. I assume she has arrived safely and is in exhausted-giddy mode. The time I took her to Paris when she was eight, she made me climb the Eiffel Tower as soon as we dumped our suitcases in the room. We got about halfway up and I could tell she was flagging. Took the elevator up the rest of the way. The only thing that kept her awake at that point was a crying baby that I wanted to chuck into the Seine. She was almost asleep on her feet. That’ll learn her, thought I. She kind of perked up on the Metro on the way back. Anyway, intrepid traveller that she is, she knows to force herself to stay awake the first day.

      There are a couple of webcams in Nuremberg. It looks like a nice day there.

  3. CNN says Mandate unconstitutional.

    • ScotusBlog claims indiv. mandate upheld.

      • Read the update.

        • I’ve rarely had so much fun — listening to Wolf Blitzer get it totally wrong while reading the quick-feedback on twitter!

          I just wish I had some idea how this is going to affect me. I think it’s a clear win for you (not as good a win as Medicare for Everyone but, that wasn’t an option today)

          • I’m not sure it’s a clear win for me. What I wanted was a low cost health insurance plan. I’d even go for an HMO or Tricare type of arrangement with a prescription drug option and a moderate deductible, say $1200/year/family. That seems reasonable since I am not someone who goes running to the doctor for every little thing. If it cost me $300/month, I could live with a policy like that.
            Not sure that’s what I’m going to get. What kind of tax are we talking about? How much will it be? When would it be paid? How many times per 12 month period would you be socked with it?

          • I was just thinking about your COBRA clock and that presumably there’d be some options out there to replace it for you. Maybe even subsidies?

            But, I can’t tell at all if/how I’m affected. I’m on former employers health insurance and I don’t know if that will continue. Or if subsidies apply if I stay on it.

          • I think my options will be greater if I move out of NJ. For some bizarre reason, the individual insurance options in this state are at the top of the scale but in PA, I can get a policy that meets my needs for significantly less than the COBRA that I’m paying now.

  4. On the Medicaid issue, SCOTUSblog says, “Another way to think about Medicaid: the Constitution requires that states have a choice about whether to participate in the expansion of eligibility; if they decide not to, they can continue to receive funds for the rest of the program.”

  5. Now the question is, How will they calculate the subsidies.

  6. Bottom line: Roberts voted for the mandate so we know it’s bad for the people.

  7. I wonder if the tax wrinkle is also a set-up….since the mandate has not gone into effect (now as a tax) the issue might not be ripe for consideration by SCOTUS. In essence:

    “So the mandate survives as a “tax” – will that mean the “Court” will pass on its ruling since this “tax” hasn’t been collected yet?

    Any constitutional lawyers out there (and no thank you Barack – I’ve never considered you a constitutional scholar!)?

  8. What it means is the deconstruction of Social Security through the use of government mandated private annuities may proceed as planned.

    Meanwhile poorer/unemployed people will be fined for not buy buying high deductable insurance where even when the insurance pays [and it always tries not to] for a major illness the insured declares bankruptcy. Say you are making median wage of $26,364 [2010-HuffPo] and you have a minor heart attack with an average cost of 76,0000.00 USD. Assuming, your insurance pays [a big assumption on individual policies], your 6,000.00 USD deductable will be eaten up in one go [that's where the good news ends], with an 80/20 split on the remaining 70,000.00 USD [2010-CBS], you will pay 14,000 in addition to the 6,000.00 for a total of 20,000.00 USD! Let’s you are 50 years old, you’ve been paying about 270.00 USD [CNN-2009] per month, or 3240.00 USD per year and lets say we split that in half, your out of pocket expense is 21,620.00 USD for the heart attack alone. That’s about 120% of your after payroll tax yearly income…off to bankruptcy court you go.

    If you own a house, you will lose it, because lost work time means you missed at least three payments, so our median wage “insured” heart attack victim losses everything under the Democratic “insurance” plan. Nice going guys!

    Not that everything is bad in the bill, it does improve around the edges, by enrolling more on Medicaid, instead of an estimated 60,000 needless deaths, we will have something closer to 35,000 needless deaths. That should thrust the US past 49th place [2010-Columbia University] in health care worldwide. But let’s be clear, by forcing additional costs onto states, who are already in financial straits, States are compelled to cut elsewhere. Gee, who do you think gets the short end of that stick? The 1 percent?

    Since the economic downturn in 2007 about 100,000 [American Progress] per week have lost their health insurance, if they have already lost everything, they can apply for Medicaid under this program, if not, they will be fined for not having insurance until they lose everything and can then apply for Medicaid. As the economy slowly improves [maybe not, we could be headed for another recession] these folks will have every incentive NOT to take work, because they would lose insurance and start paying the fine instead. Republicans will be sure to make hay out to this “free loading” and start hacking at Medicaid.

    This is what passes for wonkish “LIBERAL” health policy, no wonder the Supreme Court gave it a pass, it will gut liberal/progressive policy for the foreseeable future. When you see ignorant angry crowds of plebeians, egged on by Fox, wanting to string “Limousine Liberals” up by their necks, or voting “against their own interests” supporters of this monstrosity can be sure they played a vital role in the USA’s declining standard of living.

    Did I mention this does nothing to reduce the cost of Medical Care in the US, which is by a factor of 2, the most expensive in the world, which is the core problem? No? Sorry to go off topic, I know we don’t do solutions in the USA any more.

    • I’d like to disagree with what you’ve written here but I can’t.
      This bill was not constructed using best principles. It was written as a way to force everyone into high cost products. There are different, workable public insurance strategies from around the world that include mandates, cost savings, and some kind of rationing/scheduling. We picked the one kind of policy that would make the high cost of health care in the US permanent and mandatory without a public option. You either have a job and pay a fortune for insurance or you have nothing and get covered.

      • “I’d like to disagree with what you’ve written here but I can’t.” – RD

        Well, that’s gotta be a first, for both of us…now if I could only do a good job proof reading my comments.

        • BTW, this is not a “liberal” health care policy. That’s where you are wrong. A truly liberal health care policy would have included a public option and incentivized cost control measures to increase competition without eliminating the free market.

          • “BTW, this is not a “liberal” health care policy.”

            I thought I covered that point with the sarcastic phrase:

            “This is what passes for wonkish “LIBERAL” health policy”

          • I can’t tell anymore when people are being sarcastic about Obamacrats being liberals or not. All I know is that they are not and yet, there are many people who continue to think that he’s as commie as they come. Go figure.
            Anyway, I would like to point out that Hillary’s plan would have included a public option because that would have been the second leg of a three legged stool on health care policy- increased competition. The last part of the stool was cost containment. Alas, we will likely not see anything like good policy now unless the Democrats get rid of Obama and the class of money politicians that brought him.

  9. “a public option” has always been a red herring.

    in 2008? A massive jobs programs should have been the first priority and that’s where I think Hillary’s core “liberalism” would have come to the fore. Unlike Obama, who shows every sign of being sociopathic, Hillary does genuinely care about working people, as did Elenore, much much more so than Bill.

    Given the cards an incoming Democratic president had in 2008. I would have revived John Kerry’s stated 2004 proposal of a national catastrophic coverage with a 20,000 deductible [no moral hazard here and use Christopher Reeves dead body...I'm sure both he and his wife would approve] administered by Medicare. This lowers health insurance cost dramatically as insurance company’s have little risk, as they do now, because a really bad case is always dumped on to the public payrolls [see Christopher Reeves dead body].

    Lower Medicare opt in coverage* to an opt in 50 [but start negotiations at age 40], that’s where private insurance goes through the roof.

    I would leave to the next Democrat to lower Medicare down another notch.

    * the default is opt in, if you don’t want it, to opt out you get a court document swearing/attesting to the fact you are aware of private insurance risks and wish to take them until 65.

    • That should have been a reply to You RD…my bad.

      BTW, my facebook seems to have blocked my original post on my page in a way that only I can see it…clever no?

  10. Man that court decision stinks. Obamacare is just terrible.

  11. Here’s the thing. A young person with no pre-existing conditions at this point in her life will probably come out ahead of the game financially if she decides not to buy insurance, pays the fine, and pays for her yearly medical expenses out of pocket. This is because the minimum requirements for the level of insurance required is much more insurance than she needs. A “catastrophe only” policy is not sufficient to exempt her from the fine. The fine goes to the government to help offset the cost of subsidizing people who want to buy insurance but can’t afford it, not to the insurance companies. Should our young woman develop a health condition in the future that makes buying insurance a smarter idea, the insurance companies must accept her and cannot charge her more because she now has a pre-existing condition. If young people are smart, the insurance companies will not be getting as big an influx of people who pay more in than they take out as has been touted. The only way for the insurance companies to maintain their profits while taking on people who are already sick will be to raise everyone’s rates – putting more people in the group needing subsidized premiums. If we can wait this out long enough, the insurance companies will either go bankrupt or the government will be paying for everyone’s health care.

    • This post really leaves out the data point that younger people are far more likely to be involved in catastrophic accidents which leave them in intensive need of medical care for the rest of their lives.

    • OR, as my health insurance insider has suggested, the big companies will merge. The result will be less competition and higher rates. Isn’t that exciting? Look at how well that worked for big pharma.

    • If the fine goes to helping government offset the cost of subsidising poor people to BUY insurance from the PRIvate insurance companies, that means that the fine-money is going THROUGH the government conduit TO the ultimate PRIvate insurance company beneficiaries.

      So the fine-money is inDEED going to the PRIvate lords of Big Insura. The government is just a pass-through mechanism so blame can be attached to “government” instead of attaching to “government’s” private owners, lords, and masters. In this case, the Lords of Big Insura.

    • There will be a limited open window of opportunity to buy insurance with no penalty for preexisting conditions. That is how it works when you first go on medicare and buy a supplement. The government is not stupid, they aren’t going to let you basically screw everyone else in the pool. You’ll have to get in and pay like everyone else until you need the services.

    • There is a way to speed that process up. It would require the informed co-operation of tens of millions of dis-insured people . . . without any organizing leadership which could be assassinated to stop the informed co-operation.

      And that way to speed up the process would be this: people should study what income threshhold disqualifies them for government subsidies to pay for this Forced Mandate shitsurance. They should then shrink their income to below that threshhold so they can qualify for those subsidies. If enough people do this aggressively enough, they can sink the system by making the overall subsidy burden unaffordable for government. Once the system has been well and truly sunk, then we can go back to the drawing board.

      Of course we will also have to try and protect Medicare against the Republican-Shitobamacrat Conspiracy . . . if we can. Because the 2 Party Conspiracy Against America is already planning to abolish Medicare and dump all our prepayed and ongoingly-payed money down the Forced Mandate Shitsurance rathole.

  12. 2.) Employers find it hard to hire people because employees insist on getting paid.

    Well, this decision fixes that! Congress now has the power to mandate that employers hire people whether they need (or can afford) to or not. Furthermore, Congress can mandate that those people buy stuff from those employers, whether they need (or can afford) to or not!

    The recession’s over – I feel better already!

    • This bill is more like forcing the unemployed to hire themselves…And then shelving Unemployment insurance because everybody is now working…ooh that’s the ticket.

      • I think you’re getting closer. I’ve always felt that the ACA would allow employers to shed employees without guilt and hire them back as contractors. The burden of insurance now falls on the back of the worker who is required to buy it.
        Note that the ACA does not mandate that the insurance companies provide a less expensive product or force hospitals and providers to accept reduced payments.
        I knew someone who went to the hospital for a hernia operation and was only there for four hours. He got a bill for $70,000. His wife called the insurance company and said there must be some mistake. They said there was. It was actually $40,000. This story is not an urban legend. It happened to a former colleague who was also a French expat. She was beyond outraged. Her husband didn’t even spend the night in the hospital. Needless to say, she was not impressed with our famed American health care system.

      • Exactly!

  13. Great post!

  14. So fun catching up on your updates. !! My day was high-jacked (again) so I’m just getting caught up now.

  15. Just to put the Roberts rationale in some perspective, my first job out of college was as an auditor for the long gone HEW during the end days of the Nixon administration. Yes, the Feds used the threat of withholding Medicaid payments from states to “force” the expansion of services to poor kids. I audited one of those programs and at least one of the states in “my” region wanted to withhold services but decided the penalty was too costly (it was Indiana).

    A couple jobs later, I was working the other side doing the budgets for the Westchester County, NY Department of Social Services. I personally did the Medicaid in the 1980s and 1990s during the Reagan and Bush I years. Again, the states had no option of just withholding new services nor did counties (in New York State the costs were split between local districts, the state, and the federal government. States were allowed to submit a waiver application for one, and only one, exception to the Medicaid program and that needed approval which was far from automatic.

    Roberts decision flies in the face of the way Nixon, Ford, Reagan, and Bush I administered Medicaid. I was there and Roberts, a hoity toity corporate law blood sucker was not. He’s not a Democrat, for sure. He’s not even a Republican. He’s a corporate stooge.

  16. I’m not sure how it’s going to happen but this is going to come back and bite us in the ass. Obama didn’t care about anything but achieving something that Bill and Hillary couldn’t, no matter how riddled with significant defects the plan and John Roberts is, as David Kowalski wrote above, a corporate stooge. Neither gives a shit about good public policy or the well-being of Americans as a whole.

    We’re fucked.

  17. Well, I predicted that the SCourt would uphold the Forced Mandate. And I predicted that Roberts would find a way to vote to uphold. So I am going around collecting my I told you so’s. Not here, really, but another blog where I voiced that prediction several times.

    My reasoning was the crudest possible vulgar Marxocialist analysis.
    Roberts is Class-Allegiant to the same social class which Obama works for. The Forced Mandate is meant to be a Trillion Dollar goldmine for the PRIvate insurance industry. No way was the Federalist Society embed Roberts going to let anyone close that goldmine down.

    So now, if I get disemployed, or if my employER decides to crop and cancel our group employEES coverage, I get to buy a “not shinola” quality plan on the “Shitsurance Fuxchanges” as I used to call them over on Hullabaloo before I got banned there. There is supposedly an income threshhold below which you are qualified for “federal subsidy assistance” to pay off the Big Insura racketeers for supposedly “coverage” which supposedly “covers”. So if I get de-jobbed or dis-insured at work, my mission will be to lower my income down to the point where I qualify for that subsidy.

    Baucus-Obama Romneycare will be revealed to one and all as a cynical racket. Since Big Insura will be working the racket from its end, it is only fair that I work the racket from my end if I am forced into that position.

  18. A top surrogate for President Obama insisted Friday that the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act was not a tax — despite the fact that the Supreme Court narrowly preserved the law on those grounds. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick [D] told reporters “This is a penalty,” Patrick said. “It’s about dealing with the freeloaders.” In fact, in court arguments the administration said it was a tax*.

    I agree with Gov. Deval Patrick [D] contention that the administration was being deceitful in arguments before the Supreme Court, where I would beg to differ is in the characterization by this DEMOCRAT [speaking for Obama] of the working poor as “free loaders”. This statement should clarify for posterity how far removed the Democrats of 2012 are from the party of FDR.

    The former Democratic Party of FDR overcame the world wide depression, the combined military power of the Nazi’s & Imperial Empire of Japan, the scourge of segregation, all the while electrifying the nation, fighting a Nuclear Armed nation to a standstill, dramatically reducing poverty, landing a man on the moon and providing for the general welfare to such a degree that we were the envy of the world in 1969.

    The current Democratic Party, is systematically returning the nation to a pre-FDR construct, more akin to 19th century economics, minus the benefits of Mercantilism along the lines of the discredited economist Milton Friedman. What a legacy to reject, what a waste, what a disgrace to return to the corruption that was endemic to the gilded age. I pity todays children who will live in a fallen empire when it crumbles from within.

    *Solicitor General’s Third Backup Argument Is a Winner in Health Law Case, – “Solicitor General Donald Verrilli cited the taxing power in the administration’s third backup argument before the court” – American Bar Assc. Journal

    http://www.politico.com/politico44/2012/06/obama-campaign-its-a-penalty-not-a-tax-127721.html

  19. Just now I saw a good little sub-threadlet over at Naked Capitalism on how to deal with the government-upperclass conspiracy against America as embodied in the B O Romneycare plan and other things. And here it is . . .

    JGordon says:
    June 28, 2012 at 8:26 pm
    This is an excellent ruling by the Supreme Court. Because of it I have totally and completely stopped caring about what happens to America.

    When the taxes on Roman peasants became too onerous, the peasants simply walked off the land and joined the poor in the cities so they could get their free bread and circuses. That is an excellent lesson from history that all should take to heart. For myself, I am in the process of reducing my income so that I can apply for the numerous government benefits available to aid the poor people. I have calculated that after getting on the government dole, not only will I work a lot less, but I’ll also have a lot more free income to spend on things I like.

    And for those who are looking forward to the total economic collapse of America, this also significantly hastens that. Who could possible be unhappy with this Supreme Court desecion? (That might sound like sarcasm, and if so I apologize. That is my honest evaluation of the sitation after thinking about it for a bit.)

    Buy some rabbits, start growing a productive garden, and stock up on solar panels and ammo. You’re going to need them.

    Reply
    • Capo Regime says:
    June 28, 2012 at 8:57 pm
    J Gordon this is brilliant. Seriously the best way to deal with the monstrosity of that is the U.S. is to literally check out, go on the dole or ebt and just sit around. It would be a peaceful type of strike if you will. Frankly, most jobs are rather pointless and doing nothing and getting benfits not a bad way to go. Hell freaking out at work and leading them to think you are nuts is probably a good start to get home and get even SSI disability. You really are on to something here…..

    Reply
    ◦ Capo Regime says:
    June 28, 2012 at 9:01 pm
    A sort of slacker revolution if you will. No violence or even protesting. No leadership or manifestos. Basically we all stop giving a shit and figure out ways to become dependent on the state and ultimately drive it into the ground. While we wait we work out, learn to grow things, play guitar or anything that suits our fancy. File lots of lawsuits to clog courts, ask for any and all government help, tie up all the government phone lines and websites,….I bet if just 20% of the working population checked out the thing would end in 90 days….

    Leaderless mass resistance, leaderless economic rebellion, passive obstructionism, ” I obey but I do not comply” , uncivil obedience, etc.
    Dmitri Orlov wrote that the reigning approach to life among the “intelligentsia” and the “middling-classy” in the USSR of Brezhnevian stagnation became the Russian equivalent of “not giving a shit” .

    • My only self-caveat would be that I would prefer to see “not giving a shit” focused against the private upper class. Because if it is the “state and government” we bankrupt, the private upper class will privatise the wreckage of what had used to be OUR “state and government”. In fact, the private upper class is actively conSPIRing to bankrupt the government, through its public-face embeds like Bush and Pelosi and Reid and Obama.

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