Posted by Brad @ 3:06 pm on July 8th 2013

Admission: I Have Absolutely No Idea How Obamacare is Going to Work

And maybe the answer is “it won’t”.


  1. Weird. I was unaware that the President of the United States got to decide which laws to enforce and which to ignore.

    If the President is going to choose not to enforce the PPACA’s employer mandate, future Presidents can make the same decision, surely?

    Comment by Rojas — 7/9/2013 @ 11:23 am

  2. On the plus side, nothing like running a massive entitlement program on the honor system for awhile.

    Comment by Brad — 7/9/2013 @ 11:30 am

  3. Ezra Klein and others argue that this is good news…for Obama.

    Comment by Brad — 7/9/2013 @ 11:33 am

  4. But Rojas this NRO writer noticed it too.

    Well, if you combine pervasive regulation of everything with the arbitrary power to suspend whatever law you like, what you get at the end of the day is arbitrary power to say what the law is. So, a tax on everyoneís income, minus the presidentís suspension of the tax on people he likes, becomes simply a tax on whomever he doesnít like. Thatís just a dictatorship.

    I know the tendency would be to dismiss that out-of-hand for the use of the word dictatorship and the source, but he’s not wrong.

    Comment by Brad — 7/9/2013 @ 2:38 pm

  5. I mean, I’m really befuddled here. The President of the United States is explicitly choosing to ignore the implementation schedule in a piece of legislation passed by Congress, and the entire political establishment–both parties–seem fine with it.

    Did I misunderstand something in 8th grade civics? I mean, isn’t this WILDLY, INSANELY illegal?

    Comment by Rojas — 7/9/2013 @ 6:09 pm

  6. See this post.

    Comment by Brad — 7/10/2013 @ 9:52 am

  7. And the response from Republicans is that they are going to hold a vote on delaying the individual mandate as well.

    Of course, they’ll need 60 votes in the Senate, passage in the House, and a signature from the president to do that.

    Obama on the other hand just, like, can.

    There is obviously a huge underlying problem that this is a symptom of, all stemming more or less from our insanity following 911 and now generalizing to every other area of governance. That being, if something’s really really important you guys, the laws as written don’t matter – or they do only selectively. Or, more to the point, if nobody SAYS the laws matter or punishes people for breaking them, then in what practical way are the laws laws as we’ve always understood them?

    This is also dovetailing nicely with a legislative branch that has refused to take its check and balance responsibilities seriously but who have at the same time erected monumental impediments to collective action (filibuster etc.) such that when they do choose to act they are either handcuffed or outright ignorable (e.g. recess appointments, Obama’s climate change policy, or simply the fact that the executive branch has become SO all encompassing that they can reasonably argue that basically every government function is their discretion). It used to be that Congress could act but the President had his soapbox. It’s the other way around now.

    It’s a Brave New World in American government. I think it started, roughly, with the Authorization of the Use of Force – a six page, non-binding resolution that somehow then dictated two wars, a massive national security superstructure, a rewriting of the Geneva Conventions, military field manuals, and all government policy relating to, you know, “Terror in the world”.

    But wherever you put it, during that period from 2001 to 2005 when people were harangued off the stage for suggesting things as archaic and idiotically and unnecessarily impediment-y as a Declaration of War, when pointing out limitations of government’s ability to act was seen as the same thing as taking a moral position akin to supporting the thing government wanted to act against, and so on and so forth, we became a nation where what government wanted to do was seen as much more important than what government COULD or COULD NOT do. And from 2005 to 2013, when we had the opportunity to correct our haste, to reclarify, to punish those who went too far and lay new groundrules for those that would follow – when the handcuffs were out, open, on the table in front of us and we had the opportunity to snap them back on – we collectively decided not to.

    So, here we are.

    Comment by Brad — 7/10/2013 @ 10:11 am

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