Two years ago today Obamacare was signed into law:
Mr. Obama signed the measure, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, during a festive and at times raucous ceremony in the East Room of the White House. He spoke to an audience of nearly 300, including more than 200 Democratic lawmakers who rode a yearlong legislative roller coaster that ended with House passage of the bill Sunday night. They interrupted him repeatedly with cheers, applause and standing ovations.
My posts that day:
- The Morning After The Morning After: ” If, as seems likely, the job market does not improve or slightly worsens, the blame needs to be placed — as it correctly should be — squarely at the feet of a President and party whose priority has been a deceptive and destructive health care plan, not helping the private sector grow. Democrats can talk their way out of almost anything, particularly with the help of the mainstream media, except the job numbers.”
- We Need “Blue Light” Mandates: “If the government can force people to purchase private health insurance under threat of penalty because such purchase is necessary for the health care insurance system to work, then why not have Congress decree weekly “Blue Light” mandates to further various legislative purposes. How about requiring people to replace the brakes on their cars, even if not yet worn out, to lower the risk of accidents? Or reversible ceiling fans to lower energy use? Or two shovels, one for themselves and one for a community shovel ready project (if they can find one)? Any other suggestions?”
The winner of the Blue LIght Mandate contest was the The Guns & Tobacco Mandate:
Here is the winning suggestion, from reader Malclave:
Mandate that all US citizens must annually purchase one handgun, rifle, or shotgun.
While we’re at it, everyone should be required to purchase 2 packs of cigarettes a week. Smoking them, of course, will be illegal.
Under the legal reasoning of the supporters of the health care mandate, I believe the Guns & Tobacco Mandate would pass constitutional muster.
The right to keep and bear arms specifically is protected by the Second Amendment to the Constitution. Since firearms are manufactured using metals and other materials shipped in interstate commerce, and are shipped across state lines, the federal government has a legitimate interest in regulating such activities, consistent with the Second Amendment. The mandated purchase of firearms would help maintain a well-functioning national weapons manufacturing and sales market, and thereby would further a legitimate governmental purpose.
As to tobacco, the fertilizer used to grow the tobacco is shipped in interstate commerce, as are the leaves for processing and manufactured end product. The ban on smoking the product once purchased also would be constitutional, since smoking contributes to health care costs which are assumed or subsidized by the federal government. Since heavy taxes are levied on tobacco, including taxes used to fund health care services, the government has a legitimate purpose in maintaining a steady flow of purchases and making sure the cancer sticks were not smoked.
Although not stated in Malclave’s proposal, I believe it is implicit that in the event a citizen or alien lawfully present in the United States failed to make such purchases, there would be a tax imposed based upon how evil the person was, as expressed numerically by his or her adjusted gross income.
Hence, the Guns & Tobacco Mandate really is just a tax, so it’s all good.
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