Family Security Mattersby Pam Meister
In the Middle East and other places where America is reviled, we often hear chants of â€œDeath to Americaâ€ by anti-American protesters. Who needs anti-American protesters when we have our own government working against our interests?
With the House passage of health care â€œreform,â€ Americans now must purchase an â€œapprovedâ€ health insurance plan or pay a fine. Approved by whom? Why, the government, of course, and the IRS is now in the happy (?) position of playing Gestapo.
Under the various proposals now on the table, the IRS would become the main agency for determining who has an "acceptable" health insurance plan; for finding and punishing those who don't have such a plan; for subsidizing individual health insurance costs through the issuance of a tax credits; and for enforcing the rules on those who attempt to opt out, abuse, or game the system. A substantial portion of H.R. 3200, the House health care bill, is devoted to amending the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 in order to give the IRS the authority to perform these new duties.
If you thought you loved the IRS before, wait until they have the power to fine you for not having a health insurance plan that the bureaucratic horde deems acceptable!
Insurers are also banned from denying coverage based upon a pre-existing condition, a move that takes the word â€œprivateâ€ out of â€œprivate sector.â€
Mark Steyn wishes all of us a Happy Dependence Day:
It's a huge transformative event in Americans' view of themselves and of the role of government. ... as I've been saying for years now, governmentalized health care not only changes the relationship of the citizen to the state but the very character of the people. As I wrote in NR recently, there's plenty of evidence to support that from Britain, Canada and elsewhere.
More prosaically, it's also unaffordable. That's why one of the first things that middle-rank powers abandon once they go down this road is a global military capability. If you take the view that the US is an imperialist aggressor, congratulations: You can cease worrying. But, if you think that America has been the ultimate guarantor of the post-war global order, it's less cheery. Five years from now, just as in Canada and Europe two generations ago, we'll be getting used to announcements of defense cuts to prop up the unsustainable costs of big government at home. And, as the superpower retrenches, America's enemies will be quick to scent opportunity.
Heâ€™s exactly right. Many European nations funneled their defense dollars into their government-funded â€œcradle to graveâ€ social programs like health care coverage and generous welfare benefits because they didnâ€™t have any other source of funding to raid. More importantly, they did it knowing that if push came to shove, America would come to their pathetic rescue. They may say they hate our guts, but they hate us knowing that whatever our differences, we have their backs.
That was then, this is now. Who will have their backs once America cuts down on its big, bad, imperialist military?
And who will have our backs? The European military forces are mere shells of what they once were. And what few forces they do have they are loath to loan out to anyone, least of all to American interests. (See Iraq and Afghanistan.) Besides, they have their own problems. As Islamism rises within their own nations, thanks much to their overly-permissive immigration policies and PC-induced fear of expecting immigrants to assimilate into their cultures, they may be too busy to come to our aid for anything.
Most disturbing of all is the idea that the America that was founded on the idea that the individual knew best how to live his life and government would play an important â€“ but limited â€“ role in the individualâ€™s ability to pursue happiness may well be on the way of the dodo. It is becoming what Mark Levin calls a â€œsoft tyranny.â€
A number of states are standing by with legislation designed to nullify the blow via their 10th Amendment rights. Whether it will be enough remains to be seen.
Death to America? I pray not, but my pessimism grows each and every day.
Pam Meister is the editor of FamilySecurityMatters.org.
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