Category Archives: Health insurance

The Case Against Hillary: a Compendium of 175 Articles, 2005-2016

For those of you who want to immediately begin digging, please do proceed.

This compendium consists of 175 articles from 2005-2016 taken from independent news websites, blogs, and other sources and focuses on Hillary Clinton’s record as Secretary of State (2009-2013) and as a Presidential Primary candidate in 2008 and 2016. Her Senate record (2001-2009), though also important, is barely covered, but you can search her Senate votes and sponsorships online. In addition, the twitter feed Defeat the DINOcrats includes some graphics about Clinton’s votes on major legislation.

Topics covered include the economy, trade, politics, foreign affairs, diversity, justice, ethics, the environment, health insurance, and others.

Many of the news and opinion sources for this compendium rely on reader contributions to bring us the kind of insightful and independent reporting and commentary that isn’t available in the mainstream corporate media, so please consider giving to them. These organizations include
Alternet
Truthdig
Truthout
Democracy Now!
Pro Publica
Foreign Policy in Focus
The Nation, and
OtherWords.

LINKS
Compendium: https://theciviccenter.wordpress.com/cpdm00000045
This page: https://theciviccenter.wordpress.com/2016/02/27/00000045, http://wp.me/s1XWDT-00000045

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A Mandate for Harry and Louise

I’m sure that almost every public-affairs blog will say something about the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold Obamacare, and this blog will also. Three major problems with Obamacare are its infringement on civil liberties, the use of individual mandates to solve long-standing social and economic problems, and possible preclusion of a single-payer system.

The deciding opinion in the Supreme Court decision came from Chief Justice John Roberts, who said that the individual mandate is not an absolute mandate because individuals have a choice between obtaining health insurance or paying an extra amount through their tax return. Roberts regards this extra amount as a tax, but it’s really a fine–just like a fine that you pay for a traffic violation–and therefore the mandate is absolute. Did the court consider the right to privacy and freedom of association?

The Supreme Court’s validation of the individual mandate sets a dangerous precedent. It empowers the U.S. Government to solve long-standing social and economic problems by forcing individuals to engage in some economic or other activity. For example, Obama or some future President or Congress could abolish Social Security and force everyone to establish a 401(k) plan.

A mandate would not be necessary in a single-payer health insurance system because it would be free. On the radio program Democracy Now, Michael Moore, producer of the documentary film “Sicko,” said that Obamacare is a step toward a single-payer system. On the contrary, Obamacare enshrines and preserves for-profit health insurance and gives it a captive market. In spite of the regulations that attempt to micromanage the health-insurance industry, revenue from premiums could be used to support lobbying and other efforts aimed at thwarting a single-payer system.

A single-payer health insurance system would be held accountable to us, the taxpayers, not to shareholders. For more information about single payer, see this overview by Physicians for a National Health Program.