Sunday, March 21, 2010
Health care vote and the new Civil War
by Larry Geller
A vote on the health insurance bill is expected by 9 p.m. Eastern time tonight. At the same time as Congress struggles mightily with this bill, opposition mounts in several states to nullify it.
In part Tea-Party driven but with other sympathizers, 36 states have some kind of process advancing in their legislatures to negate the new law. Two, Virginia and Idaho, have enacted laws.
Only eleven states opposed the US government in the American Civil War. The large number of states seeking to affirm their sovereignty as a defense against the new law is certainly impressive. This does not mean that they would prevail in a court of law, of course, but like the Civil War, the battle is not likely to be a legal one. Even if it is, taking something like this to the present Supreme Court is something of a crap shoot.
The law isn’t even passed yet, but opponents point to two examples of how opposition might play out. Fourteen states now have medical marijuana laws despite unwavering federal prohibition of the weed.
Another example is the Real ID law, against which 19 states have passed some kind of measure. Hawaii, for example, passed SCR31 in 2007, asserting, in part:
Hawaii is proud of its long tradition of protecting civil rights and liberties of all of its residents, affirming the fundamental rights of all people and, in some circumstances, providing more expansive protections than are granted by the United States Constitution
Hawaii has also objected to the huge cost of implementation and asked for a Real ID compliance extension last year.
Even if Tea Partiers are dismissed as ideology-driven idiots who aren’t aware that Medicare is government-run, they are numerous and loud enough to keep the issue very much alive. Their grasp of the facts is not important as facts continue to be devalued by Fox News pundits and defective reporting on all sides of the issue. All that’s necessary in our enlightened age is to have a belief and to be willing to make enough noise about it.
While many citizens may have reasoned opposition to the bill about to be passed (and those opposing are not necessarily Tea Party fanatics), it will be the noise that makes the news. The news is also making the noise—the conservative commercial press loves to cover Tea Parties, and of course Fox News was a prime promoter.
The healtcare issue has been so charged up, and so botched by partisan politics fed by insurance and drug company money, that it just will not go away with passage of the new law. If nothing appears on the horizon to trump it as a news target, it could linger and remain the most powerfully divisive of any social/political/economic legislation for some time to come.
Effectively, there could be a kind of civil war dividing the states. If that happens, who knows what issue will be next. There are plenty of candidates for splits between the states waiting in the wings, including abortion restriction, immigration and affirmative action bigotry. Should opposition to federal legislation succeed on a large scale, the Confederacy may have the last laugh.
rights of our country were of the people not the goverment .by alowing this bill to pass we have submited our freedom away . so many free men faught for our freedom we have destroyed that dream we shoul be ashamed of our selfs we are doing evething the goverment wants us to do to become a one world order and this was the first step .OH how blind we are we have such a vail on that we cant see passed all the superficial worldly things of man . loard please protect our contry as you always have.
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