Break Out the Sad Music, It’s Almost Over

If you’ve seen Moonrise Kingdom, you might recognize this song from the soundtrack, about escaping the harsh realities of life with art. It’s probably the appropriate accompaniment to James Fallows’ piece on whether the US has been undergoing a coup.

Underscoring the point, a Bloomberg poll of 21 constitutional scholars found that 19 of them believe the individual mandate is constitutional, but only eight said they expected the Supreme Court to rule that way. The headline nicely conveys the reality of the current Court: “Obama Health Law Seen Valid, Scholars Expect Rejection.”

How would you characterize a legal system that knowledgeable observers assume will not follow the law and instead will advance a particular party-faction agenda? That’s how we used to talk about the Chinese courts when I was living there. Now it’s how law professors are describing the Supreme Court of the John Roberts era.

When the Supreme Court puts a torpedo in the side of HCR, I’d suggest spending some time with Winterreise, Death and the Maiden, and a bottle of Scotch, because the music of someone who died of syphillis at age 31 strikes about the right tone for the country we’ve become.






179 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    Fuck that. However the Supreme Court rules, I’m more motivated than ever. We may go down, but I’m going down swinging.

  2. 2
    ruemara says:

    @Baud: Amen.

  3. 3
    Chukwu says:

    I wish a motherfucker would overturn healthcare reform.

    Baud@1: Right on.

  4. 4
    amk says:

    @Baud: Bingo. +1. The fucking left folds easily. And the decision is not even out yet.

  5. 5
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    I’d suggest spending some time with Winterreise

    Yes, especially the last song in the cycle, Der Leiermann (The Organ Grinder, or The Hurdy-Gurdy Man). It breaks my heart every time I hear it.

    At the end of the village he finds the old barefoot hurdy-gurdy man, winding away his tunes, but no one has given him a penny, or listens, and even the dogs growl at him. But he just carries on playing, and the poet thinks he will cast in his lot with him.

    :: sob ::

  6. 6
    Linda Featheringill says:

    I understand that the Administration plus the dems in the House and Senate have been busy writing new legislation to compensate for whatever damage the SCOTUS does.

    I’m not sure how effective more legislation would be.

  7. 7
    Raven says:

    No life in prison for juvies.

  8. 8
    JPL says:

    @Raven: The Montana campaign was reversed though. Good for juvies though

    the juvie case was 5-4.. wtf.. is wrong with the conservative judges

  9. 9
    Raven says:

    Miller and Jackson, juvenile life without parole cases, have been decided.

    Justice Kagan wrote the opinion. Vote is 5-4

  10. 10
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Let me add to the chorus of people saying don’t fucking curl up and die.

  11. 11
    Kane says:

    Now remember, when things look bad and it looks like you’re not gonna make it, then you gotta get mean. I mean plumb, mad-dog mean. ‘Cause if you lose your head and you give up, then you neither live nor win. That’s just the way it is.

    -Josey Wales

  12. 12
    JPL says:

    @Raven: It should have been unanimous.

  13. 13
    mistermix says:

    @JPL: Not in New China.

  14. 14
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @JPL:

    It would have been except that half of the court is populated with people who hate their fellow Americans.

  15. 15
    Raven says:

    @JPL: Alito is reading a LONG dissent.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @Raven:

    Alito is reading a LONG dissent.

    Hopefully, the first of many.

  17. 17
    Raven says:

    The Ninth Circuit is reversed in part and affirmed in part. Justice Kagan does not participate. (arizona)

  18. 18
    efroh says:

    Fuck the Montana decision. They had the opportunity to walk back one of the worst decisions they have ever made (right up there with Dred Scott) but the radicals are living in their own fantasyland now (and are dragging us along with them). At least it was 5-4.

    @JPL:

    wtf.. is wrong with the conservative judges

    They were dropped on their heads as infants is my guess.

  19. 19
    Raven says:

    Most of the key provisions of SB1070 (3 of 4) are invalidated. One provision is held not to be proved preempted; it must be construed.

  20. 20
    Raven says:

    here’s a live link in case you missed it

    http://scotusblog.wpengine.com/

  21. 21
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @efroh: So much for that “States Rights” shit, eh?

  22. 22
    Raven says:

    The provision that the Court says is not yet preempted is the “check your papers” provision that commands officers to check immigration status.

  23. 23
    wonkie says:

    I would like to share this post on my Facebook page. At the bottom of the post is a share button. If I click it, I get a menu. If I select Facebook,then a little icon and a headline appears representing a Balloon Juice post–but the wrong post. Not the post I want to share. The post that shows up to share is usually from about ten or more posts back. Thus I am unalbe to share posts. Or at least unable to share the one I want to share. Does this happen to anyone but me? Is there a cure?

  24. 24
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @wonkie: Just copy the URL in your browser bar and past that into your facebook page.

  25. 25
    Raven says:

    NO health care today.

  26. 26
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    Also, no HC opinion today

  27. 27
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    @wonkie: Happens to me as well. I usually just copy the article link and paste it into FB.

  28. 28
    Raven says:

    @wonkie: I answered you yesterday, did you try what I suggested?

  29. 29
    General Stuck says:

    Scotus blog says no health care decision today. The ‘check your papers’ AZ law is upheld. But will allow illegal immigrants to seek work and not get arrested for that. Mighty white of them, eh?

    I suspect they will announce the ACA dec as they are turning out the lights for the summer, due to hyper active imaginations of the folks that do security for the supremes.

  30. 30
    KXB says:

    Regarding Montana – how are Tea Partiers going to react when Montana – about as red as they come, cannot make its own laws to set spending limits on their own elections? Isn’t this the Federal Government interfering with the states conducting their business? Why should federal spending law apply to a local county official?

  31. 31
    japa21 says:

    Usually, the SC is not much of a campaign issue, as people really don’t pay much attention to it. This year is different. People are noticing more and getting pissed off. I want to see Romney defend Alito and Scalia. Today’s decision could give PBO MT.

  32. 32
    Seebach says:

    “Justice Scalia began his dissent by saying that he would uphold all parts of the Arizona law. “

  33. 33
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Some SCOTUS breaking news.

    http://nbcpolitics.msnbc.msn.c.....n-law?lite

  34. 34
    Linda Featheringill says:

    It looks to me like states’ rights didn’t have a good day today. Hmmm.

  35. 35
    4tehlulz says:

    INTERNAL PASSPORTS FOR EVERYBODY (dark)

  36. 36
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @Seebach: Antonin Scalia is a cancer on the American judicial system.

  37. 37
    Dave says:

    Scalia wrote, and will read, a seven-page dissent on the Arizona decision. Talk about a cranky bastard…

  38. 38
    General Stuck says:

    A win in mandatory life sentences for juveniles in murder cases. Alito went ballistic, I hear, reading a scathing dissent for the little runts to be locked up and the key thrown away. He is one of the deepest shitstains on the planet.

  39. 39
    rumpole says:

    There is nothing more painful than watching CNN’s team of legal experts go through the decision and try to analyze it. I’ve tried to tell my folks that cable news will make you stupid. And watching these hacks try to go through the immigration decision, filling dead time with nails-on-blackboard inanity simply confirms that bias. If this is how we as a country get informed, we are doomed.

  40. 40
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @General Stuck: Samuel Alito is a cancer on the American judicial system, also too.

  41. 41
    Dave says:

    I think the “check your papers” part that was upheld isn’t as bad as it first looks. The SCOTUSBlog said that the decision said it could be challenged again and that there were other actions currently being taken against it in the court system (racial profiling). Maybe the majority wants to let all challenges to that part play out first before ruling on it?

  42. 42
    joes527 says:

    @Linda Featheringill:

    I understand that the Administration plus the dems in the House and Senate have been busy writing new legislation …

    How cute.

    Writing new legislation. Is that like a sternly worded letter?

    Pro-tip: Writing legislation means nothing. Passing legislation is the whole ball game, and nothing supported by any Democrat will be allowed to pass. Not even the best possible (plausible) outcome in November will shift the power enough to change this.

    If ACA is struck down or fatally crippled, there will be no do-over.

  43. 43
    BGinCHI says:

    @General Stuck: Fifty bucks his computer is loaded with torture pr0n.

  44. 44
    Scott S. says:

    I’ve got my doubts that Scalia is actually a citizen. May we please deport him to some place hot and hellish?

  45. 45
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    On net, the #SB1070 decision is a significant win for the Obama Administration. It got almost everything it wanted.

    scotusblog

  46. 46
    General Stuck says:

    @Dave:

    LOts more cases in the pipeline on the AZ law. Notably for ‘check your papers’ being a form of racial profiling. So a lot more to go on that.

  47. 47
    BGinCHI says:

    @Scott S.: Florida?

  48. 48
    Alex S. says:

    Part of my reasoning for thinking that the law will be upheld by 6-3 is that overturning the law would be something so-unbelievable-it-just-can’t-happen. It would throw the whole ethos of a profession out of the window. There would be no more legal ‘science’. Even conservative lawyers or judges have to have some kind of self-respect for their work that should make them resist such a move by the Supreme Court.

  49. 49
    shortstop says:

    @wonkie: When you share it, be sure to note that those 13 constitutional law scholars don’t know the law and thus couldn’t comment at BJ.

  50. 50
    Baud says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:

    Wonder what Romney will say, since his BFF Roberts joined the majority. Piss off his base or the Latinos?

  51. 51
    Dave says:

    @General Stuck: Yeah, so I would call the 1070 ruling a big win for common sense. Hopefully Kennedy’s reasonableness carries over to the ACA…

  52. 52
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    As part of Scalia’s statement in dissent, he is commenting on the president’s announcement about suspending deportation of illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children — something that was not part of the case.

  53. 53
    Scott S. says:

    @BGinCHI: I was thinking more “volcano.”

  54. 54
    4tehlulz says:

    Also, Scalia is a douchebag of epic proportions.

    DREAM Lite has nothing to do with the Arizona case.

  55. 55
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    I haven’t read the opinion yet , but the immigration case sounds as though it is a net win for the Feda and a net loss for AZ.

  56. 56
    Dave says:

    Interesting clip from SCOTUSBlog about Scalia’s dissent:

    As part of Scalia’s statement in dissent, he is commenting on the president’s announcement about suspending deportation of illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children — something that was not part of the case.

    The fact he is a Justice is embarrassing. Isn’t this professionally wrong, to go outside the parameters of the case?

  57. 57
    BGinCHI says:

    @Scott S.: First we make him walk the streets of Orlando, then we plunge him into a volcano.

    If the volcano will take him.

  58. 58
    eric says:

    @4tehlulz: yes it does….the both involve scary “darkies” and not dark in the mediterranean sense

  59. 59
    4tehlulz says:

    ACA drops on Thursday.

    10:37 Tom: From the opinion authorship, health care is almost certainly being written by CJ Roberts, perhaps in part with Justice Kennedy.

    This could be good news.

  60. 60
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Alex S.: It does feel like a watershed moment like Dreed Scott were we are going to find out if we actually government by rule of law or something that just coddles a privilege minority.

  61. 61
    Baud says:

    @Dave:

    The fact he is a Justice is embarrassing. Isn’t this professionally wrong, to go outside the parameters of the case?

    During the ACA argument, Scalia commented on Ben Nelson’s “Cornhusker Compromise” even though that did end up in the final bill.

    Scalia grows more shameless with age. I just hope his and Alito’s anger today are a sign that they’ve lost the ACA battle.

  62. 62
    joes527 says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: They aren’t even pretending to be above the fray any more. Thy have come to terms with the fact that they are politicians, and are embracing it publicly.

  63. 63
    Mark S. says:

    Scotusblog:

    10:37 Tom: From the opinion authorship, health care is almost certainly being written by CJ Roberts, perhaps in part with Justice Kennedy.

    Where is he getting that?

  64. 64
    Dave says:

    @4tehlulz: I like that possibility. Some commenter here a while back theorized Roberts could join a majority upholding the ACA in order to write the opinion and narrowly tailor it so only health-care could be a mandatory purchase.

  65. 65
    BGinCHI says:

    So that’s 2 cases now, just in the last week, with SEIU being the other one, that SCOTUS has gone beyond the case at hand to change the law.

    How do you impeach these motherfuckers?

  66. 66
    General Stuck says:

    Another interesting clip from the SB

    Tom: From the opinion authorship, health care is almost certainly being written by CJ Roberts, perhaps in part with Justice Kennedy.

    My entrails reading points to the omnes prediction for good news upholding the ACA. Though far from certain.

  67. 67
    Linda Featheringill says:

    @joes527: #42

    Peace.

  68. 68
    beltane says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: It took a Civil War to undo Dread Scott. There is a good chance it will takes something just as disruptive to undo the latest right-wing assaults on freedom and decency.

  69. 69
    Xenos says:

    @4tehlulz:

    This could be good news.

    I think so, guardedly. A winning decision for Scalia would be written by Scalia. Unless we are getting one of those seven-part messes of convoluted concurring-in-part yet dissenting-in-part opinions.

  70. 70
    shortstop says:

    Roberts would still write the opinion if they uphold the ACA in large part but strike down the mandate.

  71. 71
    Baud says:

    @Xenos:

    A winning decision for Scalia would be written by Scalia.

    Not necessarily. The only way the Chief Justice would not write the opinion is if he is in the dissent. If the CJ agrees with Scalia that the ACA should be struck down, it would still be a Roberts opinion.

  72. 72
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @General Stuck:

    The ‘check your papers’ AZ law is upheld. But will allow illegal immigrants to seek work and not get arrested for that. Mighty white of them, eh?

    Heh.

  73. 73
    jwest says:

    Still trying to understand liberals…

    What happens when people who lean left, but are not hardcore internet junkies are put into a social or business setting with people discussing current events? If someone relied on the New York Times or NBC for the bulk of their information, they would have walked into conversations about Obamacare thinking it was constitutional or, god forbid, someone would ask them what they thought of Fast and Furious without them ever hearing the phrase prior to the committee vote to cite Holder for contempt of congress.

    Does this lack of knowledge influence how their friends and coworkers (or bosses) think of them? Would people be less likely to entrust a large project or grant a promotion to someone who seemed uninformed and clueless? Even with like-minded friends, would they be hesitant to invite the ill-informed to dinner parties in the fear that the person would embarrass themselves by not knowing what is happening in the world?

    This is the MSM’s fault, not the individual. However, one has to wonder what the repercussions are and if people recognize the effects of limited information.

  74. 74
    Arm The Homeless says:

    @Xenos: I see it exactly the opposite. Roberts wasn’t going to let Scalia write the case anyways, because he is the lightning-rod on the court. It sounds like Roberts gets to lower the boom, and Kennedy gets to explain why this case is not precedent-making and doesn’t concern SS, Medicare, etc.

    This is how they are going to justify to themselves that they aren’t shredding stare decisis, despite how it looks … again

  75. 75
    joes527 says:

    the headlines at Google News are hilarious:

    Supreme Court Upholds Key Part of Arizona Law – WSJ
    High court strikes down key parts of Arizona immigration law -MSNBC
    Controversial Ariz. immigration provision upheld – CBS
    Supreme Court strikes down most of Arizona’s SB 1070 – Arizona Star

    Our amazing MSM knows that they are supposed to spin, and they are spinning for all they are worth.

  76. 76
    General Stuck says:

    I am some struck by the fairly obvious unhinged angry Alito lengthy dissent read from the bench on the juvenile sentencing decision, then by Scalia taking a swipe at Obama in his reading the dissent for AZ. As I understand it, fairly rare for reading dissents from the bench. Sounds like fairly marked angry butthurt from the knuckle dragger justices. In general for this session.

  77. 77
    amk says:

    @General Stuck: See what you did there. Nice.

  78. 78
    beltane says:

    @joes527: The Guardian says “Supreme Court strikes down key parts of Arizona immigration law.”

    A lesson as to why American media should be avoided except to be mocked and monitored as the propaganda it is.

  79. 79
    Jewish Steel says:

    Roberts is the Erlkoenig.

  80. 80
    RaflW says:

    Montana campaign finance law dead. Citizens United reaffirmed. Democracy is over, brought to you by 5 very privileged men with supreme agendas above the law.

    I think Fallow’s observations about us v. China is way too apt.

    And with our shit-assed media, it won’t be told as a story of an out of control court, but as the left failing to do something or other that they’ll make up.

  81. 81
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: God, he really is a flaming fuck, isn’t he?

  82. 82

    @Alex S.:

    It would throw the whole ethos of a profession out of the window. There would be no more legal ‘science’.

    That’s what worries me: To the Economic Royalists, ‘science’ of any form is the enemy. That’s why they consistently end up on the anti-science side, whatever the topic or domain.

    It’s clear now that their explicit goal is a world where those in command bellow “SO SHALL IT BE!” from the throne (or the boardroom), with no chance for argument, refutation or interference from the little people. “No more legal science” would be, to them… total victory.

    Never mind health care or immigration: We’re fighting to preserve core Enlightenment principles that have informed our civilization for nearly five centuries.

  83. 83
    sparky says:

    i find all this gnashing of teeth about health care legislation a bit sad, not to mention confused. don’t you realize that the powers that be want this to pass–the medical industrial complex is in favor of it because it enshrines private for profit medicine over any kind of public health care system?

    i confess i just don’t understand the fervor here for upholding legislation that is so deeply biased towards the corporatocracy.

  84. 84
    flukebucket says:

    @joes527:

    LOL!! Spinning is right. It is almost like watching cotton candy being made.

  85. 85
    flukebucket says:

    @joes527:

    LOL!! Spinning is right. It is almost like watching cotton candy being made.

  86. 86
    BGinCHI says:

    @jwest:

    If someone relied on the New York Times or NBC for the bulk of their information…

    Lost me right there.

    Nice post though, projecting the Fox News model onto the left. You might as well take that shit elsewhere. You’ve stumbled into a “smart people” blog space.

  87. 87
    Baud says:

    @sparky:

    don’t you realize that the powers that be want this to pass

    If that’s what’s need to get Roberts’s vote, great.

    i just don’t understand the fervor here for upholding legislation that is so deeply biased towards the corporatocracy

    Because it will help millions of people.

  88. 88
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @4tehlulz: But isn’t the popular theory of the case that Roberts and Kennedy will go the same way regardless of the decision? That’s what leads to the 6-3 uphold or 5-4 reverse scenarios.

  89. 89
    Yutsano says:

    @BGinCHI: You made it past the first sentence?

  90. 90
  91. 91
    Steeplejack says:

    @jwest:

    Still trying to understand conservatives . .  .
    __
    What happens when people who lean right but are not hardcore Internet junkies are put into a social or business setting with people discussing current events? If someone relied on Fox News or Glenn Beck for the bulk of their information, they would have walked into conversations about Obamacare thinking it was an infernal socialist plot, or, God forbid, someone would ask them what they thought of Fast and Furious without them ever hearing that it was begun under President Bush and only became an issue when the president became a Negro.
    __
    Does this lack of knowledge influence how their friends and coworkers (or bosses) think of them? Would people be less likely to entrust a large project or grant a promotion to someone who seemed uninformed and clueless? Even with like-minded friends, would they be hesitant to invite the ill-informed to dinner parties in the fear that the person would embarrass themselves by not shutting the hell up about what they mistakenly believe is happening in the world?
    __
    This is the MSM’s fault, not the individual. However, one has to wonder what the repercussions are and if people recognize the effects of limited information.

    Fix’d.

  92. 92
    BGinCHI says:

    @Yutsano: Buns of steel.

  93. 93
    gene108 says:

    Republicans are Star Trek fans. They realize that, as evidenced in TNG, Romulans had the right idea to only allow the fit and non-deformed to survive.

    Why bother letting blind people like Jordy live?

    Eventually, America will be a country, where only the strong will survive and the world will come around to our way of thinking.

  94. 94
    sparky says:

    @Baud: who does it help beyond the people in the medicaid expansion, which has nothing to do with the rest of this legislation?

    is it really better to have a system where the IRS duns you for your contribution to corporate profits? is that the kind of society you want to live in?

  95. 95
    scav says:

    @BGinCHI: Custer’s Last Tweet.

  96. 96
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @sparky: Right now the “corporatocracy” makes money hand over fist by denying people medical treatment. If there’s a way to let them make money by helping people to _receive_ medical treatment, that is an improvement. And, yes, I agree that the government should be the nation’s health insurer, but, you know, not enough people vote for that, so that’s not what we get.

  97. 97
    shortstop says:

    1. Hamhanded trolls arrive.
    2. Thread dies as everyone rushes to reargue facts that have been pointed out approximately 2,673,894 times to same trolls.
    3. Trolls laugh.

  98. 98
    wonkie says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: Okay. I can do that. I just wondered why the Share button doesn’t work.

  99. 99
    beltane says:

    @shortstop: Let’s move on to step #4: Ignore trolls.

  100. 100
    scav says:

    @scav: ahem citing myself seems most appropriate for this one

    The Long Re-Tweet from Moscow.

  101. 101
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @sparky: Oh, I didn’t realize we were talking about the kind of society we _wanted_ to live in. I thought we were trying to nudge the one we _do_ live in towards a small improvement.

  102. 102
    Baud says:

    @sparky: My response @shortstop.

  103. 103
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @shortstop: @beltane: I am weak. I can’t use the same discretion when the Earnest Lefties pop up that I do when UNLIMITED CORPORATE CASH guy does.

  104. 104
    chopper says:

    @General Stuck:

    if alito and scalia are butthurt today, maybe they’re pissed off for a reason. makes me think maybe the ACA decision might actually go the way we want it to.

    who knows with these guys tho.

  105. 105
    shortstop says:

    @beltane: If only. My esteemed buddy BG is unintentionally ironic when he says this is a smart people’s space.

  106. 106
    Culture of Truth says:

    Ah I ‘ve been on the wrong thread

  107. 107
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @chopper: Maybe they’re feeling their oats.

  108. 108
    Shalimar says:

    @Xenos: Not necessarily written by Scalia, because the Chief Justice assigns the opinion if he is on the majority side. Which is the reason most people expect it to be 6-3 rather than 5-4 if Kennedy votes to uphold, because Roberts will want to control the opinion.

  109. 109
    shortstop says:

    @FlipYrWhig: You’re better than this, Flip. You’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and gosh darn it, we really like you.

    ETA: Still cracks me up that Stuart Smalley is now a U.S. senator. Then I remember that this comedian is better verse in policy details that 90 percent of the rest of the senate, and my giggles trail off uncertainly.

  110. 110
    lacp says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Yeah, ideologically I’m in favor of single-payer and against the current bill. Except the current bill is actually helping some people who need it and my ideological convictions aren’t doing doodly-squat. And it’s highly unlikely that overturning ACA would lead to something better, at least any time in the near future.

  111. 111

    @gene108:

    Eventually, America will be a country, where only the strong will survive and the world will come around to our way of thinking.

    Well… they talk a big game about ‘survival of the fittest’ and all.

    But looking at a Mitt Romney or an Antonin Scalia, ‘rugged survivor, red in tooth and claw’ is NOT exactly the phrase that comes to mind. I just see pasty, well-padded potentates, solely protected by a system that they themselves seem eager to destroy.

    Neither of them would last 10 minutes in the Hobbsian nightmare they try so hard to bring about.

  112. 112
    sparky says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    Right now the “corporatocracy” makes money hand over fist by denying people medical treatment.

    please stop and think about this for a minute. insurers make money from paying customers (not people who are outside the system) who are then denied treatment. that’s why they want this–more customers, forced to buy. or is that you think that insurers will suddenly change their ways?

    If there’s a way to let them make money by helping people to receive medical treatment, that is an improvement.

    i can understand this, but i don’t think that is what is going to happen. that said, i can see why you might believe otherwise. i think the social cost is too high and that this legislation is designed to destroy single-payer once and for all. but then i have a rather different view of Obama than many people on this blog.

    edit: so perhaps we shall just have to agree to disagree. and hope that you are right and i am wrong.

    @shortstop: if this is directed at moi, you are rather badly mistaken as to my identity here.

  113. 113
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    And, yes, I agree that the government should be the nation’s health insurer, but, you know, not enough people vote for that, so that’s not what we get.

    I have this neat idea. Let’s all get sick and die until they all do vote for that.

    That’ll show them we mean business.

  114. 114
    Dave says:

    So say the Court comes in Thursday and invalidates the Mandate but upholds the rest. In some way, isn’t that a better outcome since it screws the insurance companies on mandated payments but forces them to continue to cover people? Or am I missing something big in there that makes it worse?

  115. 115
    Brachiator says:

    @mistermix:

    When the Supreme Court puts a torpedo in the side of HCR, I’d suggest spending some time with Winterreise, Death and the Maiden, and a bottle of Scotch

    Damn. When you have to break out Death and the Maiden, that’s some serious shit.

    The Busch Quartet performance from 1937 is superb. The The Takacs Quartet is a superior modern reading.

    Not a big Scotch person, but depending on how crazy things get, I may have to wander through some single malts.

    @beltane:

    The Guardian says “Supreme Court strikes down key parts of Arizona immigration law.”
    __
    A lesson as to why American media should be avoided except to be mocked and monitored as the propaganda it is.

    The radio reports I listened to on the way in to work today all said the same thing. I guess I missed the propaganda channels. One talk radio station was trying to put some spin on things even though the host admitted that he had not yet read the complete stories about the decision. Crap like this is easily avoided.

  116. 116
    The Dangerman says:

    I’ve flipped almost 180 from a few days ago; I now think the mandate will go down and, since no severability, that takes the whole thing down…

    …but wait, that’s not all my crystal balls say this morning. Oh, no. The mandate is supposed to address the free rider problem, where people show up in ER’s and either can’t or won’t pay. Easy fix there. Show up in the ER without insurance or a large checkbook and you get tossed in the street. Mandatory care gets struck down, too.

    Tell me I’m just in a pisser of a Monday mood.

  117. 117
    General Stuck says:

    @chopper:

    the ACA is the motherlode for the right wing. You’d think they’d have their smiley faces on, from being victorious in the wingnut cause of the new century. Or at least not going bugnut whackadoodle, but who knows with these guys, like you say.

  118. 118
    gwangung says:

    please stop and think about this for a minute. insurers make money from paying customers not people who are outside the system who are then denied treatment.

    Stop and think. People who are denied treatment ARE NOT NECESSARILY OUTSIDE THE SYSTEM.

    Many pay in. And then are denied treatment.

    Others don’t pay in…but taxpayers pay for treatment.

    You’re not grasping the entire system.

  119. 119
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    NYTimes:

    Liljenquist’s case is that Hatch has used his influence to increase government spending through pet projects, his partnership with the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., in creating a $9-billion-a-year health care program for children and his vote for Medicare prescription drug benefits.

    Jesus Christ. This is the modern Conservative Republican Party: running AGAINST health care for children and drugs for the disabled and elderly.

    Who the hell votes for these people? Who fucking thinks this way?

    .

  120. 120
    David in NY says:

    @sparky:

    please stop and think about this for a minute

    Um, you think about it. Here’s how they make money — you pay your premiums, they deny you coverage. (And in my experience, they work hard at the latter.)

  121. 121
    Baud says:

    @Dave:

    In some way, isn’t that a better outcome since it screws the insurance companies on mandated payments but forces them to continue to cover people? Or am I missing something big in there that makes it worse?

    If they overturn the mandate, they will probably overturn the requirement that insurance companies cover everyone.

  122. 122
    joes527 says:

    @JGabriel:

    Jesus Christ. This is the modern Conservative Republican Party: running AGAINST health care for children and drugs for the disabled and elderly.

    Who the hell votes for these people?

    A good number of the disabled and elderly. That’s who.

    EDT FYWPBQ

  123. 123
    Dave says:

    @Baud: But what if they don’t? That is a definite possibility.

  124. 124
    burnspbesq says:

    @Baud:

    Fuck that. However the Supreme Court rules, I’m more motivated than ever. We may go down, but I’m going down swinging.

    Pretty much. Theme music for Thursday is “This Is Why We Fight” by the Decemberists.

    “When we die, we will die with our arms unbound.
    This is why we fight.”

  125. 125
    chopper says:

    @Dave:

    depends on how the rest of the law regulates insurance rates. if the insurance companies are able to get away with jacking up everyone’s rates in response, arguing that they can’t afford to deny coverage for the old myriad reasons, it will piss everyone off.

    otherwise, the insurance companies start going bankrupt. which to me is a win.

  126. 126
    Baud says:

    @Dave:

    But what if they don’t? That is a definite possibility.

    Then it depends how the market plays out. The reason for the mandate is to prevent free riders — people who wait till they get sick to purchase insurance. If a lot of people are free riders without the mandate, then the system collapses. If there are few, then win-win.

  127. 127
    chopper says:

    @joes527:

    and adults with the minds of children.

  128. 128
    David in NY says:

    @joes527: The Google headlines may be hilarious — but they’re all true. I’m not sure what your problem is — go read the opinion and see how well you do summarizing it in eight words or less.

  129. 129
    chopper says:

    @David in NY:

    “Supreme Court Cuts Baby in Half: Baby Dies”.

    there you go. 8 fuckin’ words.

  130. 130
    David in NY says:

    @Baud:

    If they overturn the mandate, they will probably overturn the requirement that insurance companies cover everyone.

    That’s about the most popular aspect of the law — that you can get insurance even if you’ve got some pre-existing condition.

    Doing away with it does away with universal health insurance, I think.

  131. 131
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    With most of the AZ law being struck down (and the check-your-papers part being deliberately left open to further challenge, if you read what Kennedy said), I’m a bit more optimistic about HCR than I was yesterday. Scalia and Alito being all fumey and butthurt is good for my soul, but I’m not sure what it means in terms of predictions. It’s not like they were ever going to be anything but an anti-HCR vote in the first place.

    The Montana decision is sad but not surprising. That’s a long term battle if we want to get rid of that disgrace of a Citizens United decision

  132. 132
    Dave says:

    @chopper: Okay, so assume they jack up the rates. The part of the law requiring a high percentage of collected rates to go back into covering people’s claims (80 or 85%?) would funnel most of that back to the people in covered procedures or the companies have to cut their policyholders checks.

    I am just trying to see if there is a huge negative to the Mandate going down but the rest of the law being upheld.

    They way I see it, if the insurance companies start failing due to expenses, that would create an opportunity for the government to step in as an “insurer of last resort” or something similar. Maybe losing the mandate is a long-way around to a single-payer plan?

  133. 133
    David in NY says:

    @chopper: For clarity, I’ll take any of the others over yours. If only the baby (SB1070) died. Do you know what the portions struck down were?

  134. 134
    burnspbesq says:

    @sparky:

    i confess i just don’t understand the fervor here for upholding legislation that is so deeply biased towards the corporatocracy.

    Because it improves the lives of millions of Americans, ya dumbfuck.

  135. 135
    MikeJ says:

    @Dave: Oh yeah, heighten the contradictions always works well.

  136. 136
    Davis X. Machina says:

    The underlying debate is still whether access to health care is a privilege, or not.

    Half of the country is drunk on ‘freedom’ enough to think, “Why, yes, yes it is.”

    But then they think that way about food and shelter, so at least they’re consistent…

  137. 137
    chopper says:

    @Dave:

    assuming the overhead restrictions stay, yeah, most of the money would go to covering actual healthcare. but people’s rates would still go up and people would still bitch up a storm. people aren’t exactly swimming in take-home cash these days. and the fact that their rates would go up because of a law with obama’s name all over it would not help his chances for reelection.

    if, however, the insurance companies are not able to bring up rates then yeah, they start going under and oh shit, i guess we’ll need a public option or single payer or ‘medicare for all’. well fuck me, we’d actually get what we want.

    we wouldn’t know how it all works out tho for some time.

  138. 138
    Baud says:

    @Dave:

    Maybe losing the mandate is a long-way around to a single-payer plan?

    Key words for a lot of people…

  139. 139
    BGinCHI says:

    @Culture of Truth: And….scene.

  140. 140
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Baud: Losing Dred Scott was a way of getting rid of slavery — the long way around.

  141. 141
  142. 142
    ruemara says:

    @David in NY: Sure. “SCOTUS Strikes Down Key Portions of Arizona Law”

  143. 143
  144. 144
    4tehlulz says:

    @chopper: Needs more unicorns.

  145. 145
    General Stuck says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    The Montana decision is sad but not surprising. That’s a long term battle if we want to get rid of that disgrace of a Citizens United decision

    My sense, per the short decision Per Incuriam, is that the CU case is reversed ASAP, soon as one or more of the wingnuts is gone from the court, and either a liberal, or moderate takes their place. Or a principled conservative, if there are any of those remaining in the wild. One of many reasons Obama has to win, and we keep the senate. Highest of high stakes.

  146. 146
    chopper says:

    @David in NY:
    1) the bit about requiring undocumented immigrants to have to carry federal IDs
    2) the bit making it illegal for undocumented immigrants to work or solicit for work
    3) the bit allowing state and local police to arrest assumed-to-be undocumented immigrants without a warrant, based only on probable cause that they’re here illegally.

    the only bit upheld was the ‘papers please’ bit and it really was sent back to the state courts to actually construe the law first.

  147. 147
    General Stuck says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    The Montana decision is sad but not surprising. That’s a long term battle if we want to get rid of that disgrace of a Citizens United decision

    My sense, per the short decision Per Incuriam, is that the CU case is reversed ASAP, soon as one or more of the wingnuts is gone from the court, and either a liberal, or moderate takes their place. Or a principled conservative, if there are any of those remaining in the wild. One of many reasons Obama has to win, and we keep the senate. Highest of high stakes.

  148. 148
    burnspbesq says:

    @Dave:

    Maybe losing the mandate is a long-way around to a single-payer plan?

    And in the meantime, millions suffer and die waiting for the unicorn to shit chocolate ice cream. How does that qualify as a step in the right direction?

  149. 149
    sparky says:

    @gwangung: actually if you read the rest of what i wrote you’d see that i said exactly the same thing. the only bit i left out was the cost of the uninsured to the taxpayer (or more properly, medicare). currently, the institution eats the costs that are not reimbursed by payors such as medicare. under the ACA the costs of the uninsured are also to be borne by the insured, except that in theory the costs would be spread among a larger pool. in other words, more people pay in, and the insurers reap more profits from that larger pool.

    let me try this another way: do you really think the insurers would be supporting this plan if they thought they would lose money under it?

    Here is the chairman of Aetna, via NPR

    He says at one level, the Affordable Care Act represents a huge opportunity for the U.S. health insurance industry.

    “Our organization has taken the view that when someone takes a $2.5 trillion industry and throws another trillion dollars into the bag, shakes it up, throws it on the table, and says ‘Who wants it?’ that’s the time to get creative,”

    [Y]ou’d think the industry would love the idea of requiring most people to either have insurance or to pay a penalty. But from the start, insurers have been worried that the penalty in the law for not having insurance is too small.

    doesn’t read to me as if the insurers are having their feet held to the fire, now does it?

  150. 150
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Constitution? Nothing that concpetual. Self-interest? Not even something that basic.

    Smells like team spirit.

    Health care reform is an issue with an unusually broad reach. When voters think about the issue, though, we are thinking about it primarily through the lens of partisanship and groups, not through the lens of self-interest.

    From the invalulable Monkey Cage blog, with graphs and numbers galore.

  151. 151
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @General Stuck:

    One of many reasons Obama has to win, and we keep the senate. Highest of high stakes.

    You left out the part about the drones.

  152. 152
    waynski says:

    @JGabriel: Actually, Alito wants healthcare for children by putting them in prison for life. Maybe that’s why he was so upset this morning. We’re the ones denying children healthcare.

  153. 153
    catclub says:

    @Dave: Your case is indeed death for large insurance companies.

    It is left to the reader to determine how likely a conservative majority (that includes Roberts) is to come to such a decision.

  154. 154
    negative 1 says:

    @Baud: No, they’ll just raise rates and tell everyone it’s because they’re forced to cover everyone. Very simple. Our health insurance at my company goes up 12% per year. It can go up much more, and probably will.

  155. 155
    chopper says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    if only the drones dropped health care coverage. like the little health packs in video games.

  156. 156
    sparky says:

    @Davis X. Machina: interesting post, and i think it makes sense, to the extent health care is an abstraction, to see it through the usual lens. certainly some of my problems with it come from what i see as a covert rightist conquest of the sphere. but i also don’t think it will do me any good, for personal reasons.

    i still think that the presence of institutional support will carry the day. the Rs who are hoping for an invalidation are not the locus of power in this country.

  157. 157
    Chris says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Health care reform is an issue with an unusually broad reach. When voters think about the issue, though, we are thinking about it primarily through the lens of partisanship and groups, not through the lens of self-interest.

    Lot of issues are like that these days.

    But they usually manage to make an exception where they’re concerned. E.G, welfare is ruining this country, but “hey, I WORKED for that welfare money,” “yeah, but I don’t earn very much,” etc.

  158. 158
    4tehlulz says:

    @sparky: Yes, someone will make money somehow.

    Do you oppose Medicare on the same grounds? Lots of people make money off Medicare, too.

  159. 159
    gex says:

    @JPL: They believe the age of reason begins at 7 years old. Old enough to answer for your soul, old enough to get life in prison.

  160. 160
    danimal says:

    @General Stuck: Agreed, to a point. Keeping the Senate won’t mean a damn thing without filibuster reform.

    Why, yes, I do believe the GOP would filibuster any Dem-nominated replacement of a conservative SCOTUS jurist. Without a doubt.

  161. 161
    Violet says:

    Will the healthcare verdict be a Thursday morning thing or a Thursday later in the day thing?

  162. 162
    SenyorDave says:

    Scalia and Thomas would vote to re-implement slavery tomorrow, Alito and Roberts would uphold slavery if it were around today, and Kennedy would uphold slavery if it would help some of the corporations. Will HCR survive? IMO no, but maybe Kennedy will be a contrarian on this one.

  163. 163
    Baud says:

    @Violet: Thursday beginning at 10 am.

  164. 164
    gene108 says:

    @Judas Escargot, Acerbic Prophet of the Mighty Potato God:

    Money is a form of strength, just like it’s a form of free speech.

    With money, you can hire folks to be “red in tooth and claw” for you.

  165. 165
    Violet says:

    @Baud: Thanks.

  166. 166
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @sparky:

    currently, the institution eats the costs that are not reimbursed by payors such as medicare.

    This is where you’re wrong, Sparky. Health care providers don’t “eat” the cost of uninsured patients. They spread that cost around to the insured patients.

  167. 167
    gwangung says:

    let me try this another way: do you really think the insurers would be supporting this plan if they thought they would lose money under it?

    Let’s put it another way. When your own sources says, “At one level….”, do you really think that this isn’t someone making lemonade out of lemons?

    And you CAN’T focus on just those who are not in the system—the biggest areas of objection was those who were paying into the system and not getting the benefits.

  168. 168
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @sparky: I think the idea is to show insurance companies that they can still make profits as middlemen between patients and doctors if the patients get treated and reimbursed. So, yeah, it’s a concession to business and profit, but so it is when logging companies are pushed to adopt sustainable practices. It’s still capitalism, but with a human face.

    The problem is that people who have health insurance might hate their insurance company, but they can be made to hate the idea of the government as their insurance company even worse. So to get people not to run away frightened of changes in the health care system, you need to assure them that if they like what they have now they can keep it. ETA which means enshrining for-profit companies in the system.

  169. 169
    General Stuck says:

    @danimal:

    Why, yes, I do believe the GOP would filibuster any Dem-nominated replacement of a conservative SCOTUS jurist. Without a doubt.

    Absolutely they will. And pull out all the stops to replace with another, even more radical wingnut. But they will be hoisted on their own petards for wanting to banish the filibuster for judges, under Bush. The executive session is separate from the legislative session, so dems can simply do what the wingers threatened to do, and nuke that sucker and keep the leg filibuster in tact. I think by then, both Obama and Reid will be bloody minded enough from the right wing bullshit, to take that step. But we are talking about democrats, so who knows.

    About all the cards will still be held by our side, and the wingnuts would be further exposed as obstructions on steroids for filibustering a SCOTUS nominee. I read a poll this morn, that for the first time I can remember, respondents recognized that the GOP was blocking Obama from governing.

  170. 170
    slag says:

    Great movie!

  171. 171
    Elie says:

    @Linda Featheringill:

    Well, you can’t give up trying to pass legislation, can you?

    We have to try to fix anything they screw up..

  172. 172
    joes527 says:

    @David in NY: High Court Delivers Mixed Verdict on Arizona Law.

    …five, six, seven EIGHT!. I didn’t even have to cheat with SCOTUS.

    And I didn’t designate a winner (who just happened to coincide with my political leaning — it is a coincidence man!) I just reported the facts.

    Yeah I know. Reporting doesn’t generate the clicks like polemics do.

  173. 173
    chopper says:

    @gex:

    ‘mazel tov! you are now a man, son. you can now spend the rest of your life in prison if you fuck up.”

  174. 174
    Valdivia says:

    I saw at TPM that Theda Skocpol had an article about the striking down of the mandate and how to manage it to make it a win for health care in general and the Dems politically.

  175. 175
    The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge says:

    Pure tea-leaf reading, but I think the fact that the decision on Health Care was put off ’till Thursday is a good sign. Scalia and Alito were allowed to take up all the time today to sputter and posture for their wingnut fans. Alito in particular is fuming about something, something much more important than this decision he was fulminating at such length about. I think it was done this way to give them their airtime as compensation for losing the biggie. Just a hunch.

  176. 176
    Ben Cisco says:

    @BGinCHI: She’s got a mind like a steel trap.

    Rusted shut.

    \Foghorn Leghorn

  177. 177
    Brachiator says:

    @JGabriel:

    Jesus Christ. This is the modern Conservative Republican Party: running AGAINST health care for children and drugs for the disabled and elderly.

    A piece in the recent New Yorker points out how the Republicans used to be in favor of the individual mandate, until there were against it.

    The mandate made its political début in a 1989 Heritage Foundation brief titled “Assuring Affordable Health Care for All Americans,” as a counterpoint to the single-payer system and the employer mandate, which were favored in Democratic circles. In the brief, Stuart Butler, the foundation’s health-care expert, argued, “Many states now require passengers in automobiles to wear seat-belts for their own protection. Many others require anybody driving a car to have liability insurance. But neither the federal government nor any state requires all households to protect themselves from the potentially catastrophic costs of a serious accident or illness. Under the Heritage plan, there would be such a requirement.”
    __
    The mandate made its first legislative appearance in 1993, in the Health Equity and Access Reform Today Act—the Republicans’ alternative to President Clinton’s health-reform bill—which was sponsored by John Chafee, of Rhode Island, and co-sponsored by eighteen Republicans, including Bob Dole, who was then the Senate Minority Leader.

    But somewhere along the way, the Republicans shifted and decided that health care reform was unconstitutional.

    My take on this is that somewehere around the time of the Clinton Administration, the GOP decided that they were the only legitimate political party, and that bipartisanship, co-operation and compromise must be avoided in order to ensure that the GOP has all the power and calls all the shots.

  178. 178
    rikyrah says:

    Baud:

    amen.

    amen.
    amen.

  179. 179

    […] Snark watch: “When the Supreme Court puts a torpedo in the side of HCR, I’d suggest spending some time with Winterreise, Death and the Maiden, and a bottle of Scotch, because the music of someone who died of syphillis at age 31 strikes about the right tone for the […]

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