I blogged before about how the Supreme Court should probably abolish the Old School Renaissance, and how it has a history of deciding in favour of mandated health insurance. It appears that the supreme court hasn’t broken with that tradition, and will uphold Obamacare’s individual mandate. Of course the devil’s in the detail and Obamacare is, as universal healthcare packages go, pretty shit, but this is overall a big win for Americans. Guys, if you keep plugging away at it you may one day get a decent, affordable healthcare system. Ganbare! There appears to be some devil in the detail – maybe the supreme court has limited Obama’s ability to force states to accept his medicaid expansions (because with 40% of Americans on food stamps, why on earth would you need to expand the safety net?) – but the mandate is a central plank of Obamacare, and if that’s all you guys can hope for, I guess it’s a good thing the court didn’t strike it down. Just to remind my readers of how perverse such a decision would have been:
in 1790, the first Congress, which was packed with framers, required all ship owners to provide medical insurance for seamen; in 1798, Congress also required seamen to buy hospital insurance for themselves. In 1792, Congress enacted a law mandating that all able-bodied citizens obtain a firearm. This history negates any claim that forcing the purchase of insurance or other products is unprecedented or contrary to any possible intention of the framers.
It’s a win for originalism!