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Thursday, April 03, 2014

OTP April 2014: BurstNET Sued for Not Making Equipment Lease Payments

Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 03, 2014 at 01:59 PM | 4718 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: 7 million aca signees and counting, i-95 south, nc, politics

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   701. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:21 PM (#4683816)
Please elaborate. Please don't cite the ACA as an example.
Where, exactly?


So, don't site the biggest infringement of liberty?

Contraceptive mandate. Fining people for failing to buy insurance. Using the EPA to attack the coal industry. Unilaterally changing Federal law without consent of Congress, e.g. de facto amnesty for young illegal immigrants, modifying Obamacare by writ.
   702. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:23 PM (#4683817)
That only justifies a vote for Obama. It doesn't justify Obama's actions.


I haven't attempted to justify anything other than my positions on matters discussed. I voted for Obama twice, because a compromised Democrat is better than a willfully evil Republican. (McCain and Romney both fully endorsed the neocon vision of Cheney's apparatus, regardless of whatever sheen they might have tried to put on things.)

Abstaining, or voting for someone further left on these issues.


When doing as much has a chance of making even some minor iota of difference, I do. No option presents itself in national elections for the POTUS in recent years. (There's a reason I supported Obama over HRC in the 2008 Dem primaries; he failed to live up to that "hope" clearly, which is a "fool me once" scenario.) I could take the Mongoose Way and abstain, certainly. It's not like my vote is going to swing GA. I've done that previously, and I voted for the Greens in 2000 for just that reason. My decision in that regard, come 2016, will come down to who runs and what they are arguing.

None of that will change the fact that the GOP is light years worse on virtually every issue of importance, so I will continue to hold Dan's false premise in that regard up for ridicule and counter.
   703. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:24 PM (#4683820)
So, don't site the biggest infringement of liberty?


Don't use basic law, which is the purpose of government, as a stand in for "infringement of liberty," no. The whinging about contraception is classic, though. The idea that a woman might spend her own earnings on birth control is not an infringement of liberty.
   704. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:29 PM (#4683824)
Don't use basic law, which is the purpose of government, as a stand in for "infringement of liberty," no. The whinging about contraception is classic, though. The idea that a woman might spend her own earnings on birth control is not an infringement of liberty.

So, we can't cite the Nuremberg Laws as evidence of Nazi anti-semitism? Good to know.

No one ever tried to stop a woman from spending her own money on birth control. That's a red herring. The point was that the employer didn't want to spend the corporation's money providing birth control.

I'd like to have my over-the counter allergy medication covered by my health-insurance. Why don't we mandate that? Why is birth control the only type of medication that's called out?

You're really a disgustingly dishonest debater. DJS is right, you have no conception of rights beyond whatever your preferences are. Given the opportunity, you'd make a good little Red Guard.

I'm done arguing with you.
   705. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:35 PM (#4683830)
as for the lefties, I think they're hoping for
- R by a narrow margin in 2014, BIG D sweep in 2016

"Left" and "Democrat" are very much not the same thing.
Democrats don't want "left" policies, they want "Democrat" policies, or more accurately "not-Republican" policies.
Other than maybe abortion rights, I have no idea what principles the Dems would not happily stomp down in order to get elected.
   706. Shredder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:38 PM (#4683833)
The point was that the employer didn't want to spend the corporation's money providing birth control.
The employer isn't. Assuming the company isn't self-insured, the employer is spending the corporation's money (and actually, some of the government's money) to provide their employees with health insurance as part of the employee's compensation. The insurance provider then spends its money on contraception. That insurance package IS the employee's own money.
You're really a disgustingly dishonest debater.
This may be the time when you want to pick up a mirror. Seriously, anyone who argues that regulating carbon emissions and slag ponds is an infringement of liberty is pretty far gone. God forbid industries be responsible for their negative externalities. TYRANNY!
   707. Steve Treder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:41 PM (#4683839)
Even Krauthammer is now saying enough with the Benghazi, already:

Charles Krauthammer declared that the Benghazi investigation "is done" and that time has run out for Republicans to get the answers they want.

"Politically speaking, the administration has won," Krauthammer said on Fox News Channel's “Special Report” Wednesday. "They ran out the clock."
   708. Publius Publicola Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:48 PM (#4683843)
Using the EPA to attack the coal industry.


Wait, what?? Isn't it the EPA's job to scrutinize the coal industry, the reason it exists in the first place??
   709. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 12:57 PM (#4683855)
I'd like to have my over-the counter allergy medication covered by my health-insurance. Why don't we mandate that? Why is birth control the only type of medication that's called out?


Because a woman's right to control her reproductive organs is more important than your right to not have the sniffles. Your sinus drainage isn't comparable to pregnancy. Even if you have a penis.

And as Shredder points out, the insurance benefit is a part of the pay package. It's not "the corporation's money," any more than the salary is. The only reason you have an issue with the contraception mandate is because you hate the idea of birth control
   710. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:00 PM (#4683857)
Charles Krauthammer declared that the Benghazi investigation "is done" and that time has run out for Republicans to get the answers they want.

"Politically speaking, the administration has won," Krauthammer said on Fox News Channel's “Special Report” Wednesday. "They ran out the clock."


"Et tu, Charles?"

---JE
   711. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:07 PM (#4683861)
This is priceless, reading these two comments by the same person:

----
DJS is right, you have no conception of rights beyond whatever your preferences are.


----
So, don't site the biggest infringement of liberty?

Contraceptive mandate. Fining people for failing to buy insurance. Using the EPA to attack the coal industry. Unilaterally changing Federal law without consent of Congress, e.g. de facto amnesty for young illegal immigrants, modifying Obamacare by writ.


Nah, no "preferences" there. Nobody there but us chickens.
   712. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:11 PM (#4683867)
It is interesting, I think, that insurance policies for years and years and years on end provided coverage for vasectomies, with nary a peep from the "infringin' me liberties!" crowd. But require that those same insurance policies provide coverage for female control of contraception... That's just tyranny, man. Tyranny!

Benefits are part of the pay package to employees. How an employee spends her pay is not for His Holiness Snapper, nor his Lord Corporation to decide.

And you have the audacity to accuse me of not respecting liberty. One of us is intent on infringing the liberty of 51% of the population. That's not me.
   713. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:18 PM (#4683871)
Don't use basic law, which is the purpose of government, as a stand in for "infringement of liberty," no. The whinging about contraception is classic, though. The idea that a woman might spend her own earnings on birth control is not an infringement of liberty.
If women want to spend their own earnings on birth control, nobody is stopping them. But the mandate isn't on the woman¹ But you can't buy birth control with a health insurance policy that doesn't cover it any more than you can buy movie tickets with that policy, and it's not "telling a woman what she can do with her own money" to not give her health insurance that covers movie tickets.



¹ Well, a separate illegitimate mandate is on her as part of Obamacare, but not the one being discussed.
   714. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:20 PM (#4683873)
The point was that the employer didn't want to spend the corporation's money providing birth control.
No, actually, that framing buys into the left-wing propaganda. It isn't about money. It's about being forced to participate in the process.
   715. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:21 PM (#4683874)
If women want to spend their own earnings on birth control, nobody is stopping them. But the mandate isn't on the woman¹ But you can't buy birth control with a health insurance policy that doesn't cover it any more than you can buy movie tickets with that policy, and it's not "telling a woman what she can do with her own money" to not give her health insurance that covers movie tickets.


Tell me again about how taxes are like stealing your life again, David. That never gets old.
   716. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:21 PM (#4683875)
Because a woman's right to control her reproductive organs
Don't you mean the woman's right not to control them? If she controlled them, she wouldn't need birth control. And of course this has nothing to do with her reproductive organs.

And as Shredder points out, the insurance benefit is a part of the pay package. It's not "the corporation's money," any more than the salary is. The only reason you have an issue with the contraception mandate is because you hate the idea of birth control
Shredder is, as always, wrong. The insurance benefit isn't part of the pay package, except insofar as the government forces it to be, which is precisely the point.
   717. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:22 PM (#4683876)
It's about being forced to participate in the process.


They can not provide insurance policies.
   718. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:23 PM (#4683877)
Don't you mean the woman's right not to control them? If she controlled them, she wouldn't need birth control.


I like you David, because at least you admit that you're really concerned with making sure women don't use their bodies in ways David Nieporent doesn't approve of.
   719. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:23 PM (#4683879)
It is interesting, I think, that insurance policies for years and years and years on end provided coverage for vasectomies, with nary a peep from the "infringin' me liberties!" crowd. But require that those same insurance policies provide coverage for female control of contraception... That's just tyranny, man. Tyranny!
Yes. Key word is "require." That you don't understand the concept of consent is bizarre.

Benefits are part of the pay package to employees. How an employee spends her pay is not for His Holiness Snapper, nor his Lord Corporation to decide.
Again, no. Only the benefits that are actually provided are part of the pay package. This isn't about how she spends her pay; this is about what pay she's entitled to, which is indeed for the corporation to decide.
   720. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:24 PM (#4683880)
It's about being forced to participate in the process.

They can not provide insurance policies.
Not without being hit with a massive fine by the government.
   721. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:25 PM (#4683881)
I like you David, because at least you admit that you're really concerned with making sure women don't use their bodies in ways David Nieporent doesn't approve of.
I couldn't care less how they use their bodies. I care how they try to force other people to use theirs.
   722. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:28 PM (#4683886)
Tell me again about how taxes are like stealing your life again, David. That never gets old.

I used to know a guy in the pool room named "Half Man", because he was only about 5'2". If David's tax rate is around 30%, I guess he might start calling himself "Mr. 70%".
   723. Shredder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 01:48 PM (#4683900)
Not without being hit with a massive fine by the government.
This is simply a lie. The mandate only applies if any of the employees who would otherwise be covered receives a subsidy on one of the exchanges. If an employer pays their employees enough such that none of them are eligible for subsidies when buying their own insurance, they pay no penalty. There's a nice flow chart that you can follow right here.

1) Does the employer have at least 50 full time employees? Yes -->
2) Does the employer offer coverage to its workers? No -->
3) Did at least one employee receive a premium tax credit or cost sharing subsidy in an exchange? No -->
4) There is no penalty payment required of the employer.


If you own a business with 50 or more employees and you don't want to provide health insurance, you're free to refrain from doing so, and not subject to penalties, so long as you actually pay your employees well. It's completely up to you.
   724. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:02 PM (#4683914)
I care how they try to force other people to use theirs.


Roving bands of women are forcing other women to use birth control?

Things sure have changed since I was a lad.
   725. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:10 PM (#4683919)
There is a pile of conflation going on here.

The government has always regulated health insurance policies. So talking about X being regulated as if it were a new thing that regulations happen is silly.

So the argument is that a specific part of the regulation is infringing. Employer offers insurance and that insurance now includes contraception (or whatever). No one is forcing anyone to use the insurance benefit. And the benefit is not really costing employers any money, because as it turns out pregnant woman are much more expensive (from a health insurance perspective) than women who do not become pregnant.

So employers are not paying more and employees are not forced to use the benefit. A soft tyranny indeed.
   726. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:10 PM (#4683920)
I couldn't care less how they use their bodies. I care how they try to force other people to use theirs.


Yet plans with vasectomies are just fine. Forcing those sad little corporations to pay for a man to defy the will of god like that.
   727. Steve Treder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:14 PM (#4683927)
Roving bands of women are forcing other women to use birth control?

At ... (wait for it) ... GUNPOINT!
   728. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:17 PM (#4683929)
This is simply a lie. The mandate only applies if any of the employees who would otherwise be covered receives a subsidy on one of the exchanges. If an employer pays their employees enough such that none of them are eligible for subsidies when buying their own insurance, they pay no penalty. There's a nice flow chart that you can follow right here.
No; it's not a "lie." It simply omits a trivial qualification which no large company is going to overcome, given how 'generous' the federal government is with its subsidies. It's true that instead of paying a massive fine to the government, you could instead give an even larger raise to all of your employees, far beyond their market value. But that would be even more likely to bankrupt them.
   729. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:18 PM (#4683931)
"Left" and "Democrat" are very much not the same thing.
Democrats don't want "left" policies, they want "Democrat" policies, or more accurately "not-Republican" policies.
Other than maybe abortion rights, I have no idea what principles the Dems would not happily stomp down in order to get elected.


I didn't want this gem to be forgotten. I love the assertion that there are only Republican and "not-republican" policies and then followed on by the tired canard about how Democrats don't have real principles, not like the GOP.
   730. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:19 PM (#4683934)
Yet plans with vasectomies are just fine. Forcing those sad little corporations to pay for a man to defy the will of god like that.
Plans with vasectomies or birth control are just fine. Government mandates that plans cover vasectomies or birth control are not. I know you can't be so stupid as to not understand the difference.

Roving bands of women are forcing other women to use birth control?
No; the government, supposedly acting on behalf of women, is forcing companies to provide birth control coverage.
   731. Shredder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:28 PM (#4683941)
No; it's not a "lie." It simply omits a trivial qualification which no large company is going to overcome, given how 'generous' the federal government is with its subsidies.
You said it's not possible to avoid penalties if an employer subject to the mandate fails to offer insurance to their employees. That is simply factually wrong. Most people would call that a lie, but I'll give the benefit of the doubt. Maybe you weren't lying, and you were just ignorant.
you could instead give an even larger raise to all of your employees, far beyond their market value. But that would be even more likely to bankrupt them.
Well considering you just took away their health insurance so that God wouldn't get mad at you for indirectly contributing to birth control, they probably deserve a raise.
forcing companies to provide birth control coverage.
Are there any insurance companies morally opposed to providing contraceptive coverage? Because those are the companies we're talking about. They're the ones required to provided contraceptive coverage, not the employer. You can try all you want to argue that the employers are providing birth control coverage, but you're wrong. I know that's the way you want to couch it so that you can feel put upon and play the role of victim of TYRANNY! but its simply inaccurate.
Government mandates that plans cover vasectomies or birth control are not.
The government mandates all sorts of things. For one to believe that the above is true it requires one to believe that all government mandates are philosophically wrong. The mandates in the ADA are philosophically wrong. The mandates in the Civil Rights act are philosophically wrong. I know David believes this crap, but generally people that understand how a society actually works realize that such arguments are complete and utter bullshit.
   732. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:34 PM (#4683942)
   733. OCF Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:36 PM (#4683943)
Speaking of rhetoric, more amusing than truly offensive:

(Qoute from Jim DeMint, post #687, including "no liberal is going to win a debate that big government freed the slaves," and there's more where that came from.)

I considered the idea of dropping that quote in front of a panel of the people who grade the AP U.S. History exam. But I don't really harbor that much ill will toward such people, and that quote might just kill them all off when they die laughing.
   734. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:37 PM (#4683945)
Plans with vasectomies or birth control are just fine. Government mandates that plans cover vasectomies or birth control are not. I know you can't be so stupid as to not understand the difference.


Every health plan in America has been regulated by the government as to what it must provide forever (as far as I know), and definitely the last few decades. Do you have equal problems with mandates for any coverage? Because every state enforces coverage minimums on health plans in that state. Every single one.
   735. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:39 PM (#4683947)
I know you can't be so stupid as to not understand the difference.

I actually fear the worst on this one, based on what I've read.

The tyranny of the Obama administration (dare I call it a regime?) must have been terrible for corporate America.

Oh wait.


Is this rhetorical? The Democratic party threw its lot in with Big Capital in around 1990.
   736. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:43 PM (#4683948)
Is this rhetorical? The Democratic party threw its lot in with Big Capital in around 1990.


it is a response to David N crying a river over corporate profit margins. Because you know ACA will certainly bankrupt them ALL (at gunpoint!).

It's true that instead of paying a massive fine to the government, you could instead give an even larger raise to all of your employees, far beyond their market value. But that would be even more likely to bankrupt them.


Corporate America is doing just fine. Better than fine in fact.
   737. spike Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:50 PM (#4683955)
The primary benefit of using an updated SSC rather than a driver's license is that the SSC is federally issued, rather than state issued.

And by extension, the federal venues for obtaining one can't be monkeyed with to make sure it's painful to get, as certain (I think there's a pattern...) states have done.
   738. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:53 PM (#4683957)
The tyranny of the Obama administration (dare I call it a regime?)


Junta?
Regency?
Dominion?
Cliche?
Tyranny?


   739. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:55 PM (#4683960)
Reich.
   740. spike Posted: April 10, 2014 at 02:57 PM (#4683962)
Commune, def.
   741. Bitter Mouse Posted: April 10, 2014 at 03:03 PM (#4683968)
Perhaps autocracy.
   742. spike Posted: April 10, 2014 at 03:25 PM (#4683991)
The tears of rage from the conservative punditocracy over Colbert moving to "Late Night" is flat awesome
   743. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: April 10, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4683997)
Plans with vasectomies or birth control are just fine. Government mandates that plans cover vasectomies or birth control are not. I know you can't be so stupid as to not understand the difference.


As has been pointed out, those plans with vasectomies included have been mandated for years on end. And we heard crickets from the "religious freedom" crowd on the issue all that time. It was only when a different branch of the state, via a law passed by a Democratic administration, mandated equivalent requirement for women to have access to similar birth control options that the we heard this cry of tyranny and religious oppression. Because the problem isn't that plans, mandated by an arm of the state, have set minimum requirements to allow for birth control. The problem, for the "ERMAHGAH RELIGIOUS FREEDOMS" crowd isn't access to birth control, but female access to birth control. Or, to be shorter and more to the point, female control.

Now, I realize you only partially play that game. I realize that you do your very best high wire act between your religious hatred of the idea of women enjoying sex and your decades long rhetorical history of principled libertopianism. So, in point of fact, I actually give you a bit more credit here. I think that, given the options, you'd probably support divorcing "insurance" from "employment" altogether. Now, you'd probably follow that up with a "free market" system by which poor people could never afford insurance at all, but at least you'd admit the first bit. And if you did, we could agree on something.

I would prefer a system where employers were not middlemen in the health insurance racket at all. Employers should pay their people living wage, including the value of the current "corporate insurance plans" on top of existent salaries or wages. Then the employees should be able to take their personal earnings and spend them on a marketplace for insurance plans. Now, in order to generate plans that are actually marketable, someone has to step in and take the place of the net pool provider role that employers currently play. And of course, this is where I'm going to veer off from your libertopian dreamland and point out that the only practical option there is, *gasp*, the state; and that in order to pool risk there's going to need to be a, *gasp*, mandate by which the state requires all citizens to play in the pool of the common good, rather than have the young, healthy, bullet proof folks free ride until they get sick.

Of course, the other option would be to eliminate the rent-seeking vertical of "insurance providers" altogether and have the state provide universal coverage, but that would probably make you pee yourself while asking Bolton's bastard to not cut off your junk or something.
   744. Lassus Posted: April 10, 2014 at 03:57 PM (#4684000)
The tears of rage from the conservative punditocracy over Colbert moving to "Late Night" is flat awesome.

Tears? I was assuming he was retiring the character for his new gig, which means they should be thanking whatever god they have. I of course was ASSUMING that, so maybe the character's traveling with him over there.
   745. spike Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:08 PM (#4684003)
No the character is being retired, and normal folks might have thought as you - but Rush says CBS 'Declared War On The Heartland Of America' By Hiring Stephen Colbert
   746. zenbitz Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:21 PM (#4684013)
Morty I didn't mean literally arguing with yourself.
   747. zonk Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:24 PM (#4684018)
I think Stephen Colbert is pretty talented - but I do have to wonder how well this will all work out for him... Presumably, he'll be putting aside his "Stephen COL-baer" persona and doing it straight, as Stephen Colbert.

Man... I have to say, though -- how far in advance does Bill O'Reilly tape? IIRC (I think It read about it at RS or TPM), just last night Papa Bear had one of his truly epic old white man "DAMN THESE KIDS AND MY LAWN" tirades that was specifically about Colbert. Man... this news ought to make for just an epic show.
   748. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:27 PM (#4684022)
You said it's not possible to avoid penalties if an employer subject to the mandate fails to offer insurance to their employees.
Actually, I didn't; you can tell because I didn't say the words "possible" or "avoid" anywhere. What I said was "Not without being hit with a massive fine by the government." Which is, in every practical sense, correct. I'll bet that every single 50+ company that doesn't offer insurance will be hit with the fine, unless they have the richest secretaries and janitorial staff in the world.

Well considering you just took away their health insurance so that God wouldn't get mad at you for indirectly contributing to birth control, they probably deserve a raise.
Not that big a raise.

Are there any insurance companies morally opposed to providing contraceptive coverage? Because those are the companies we're talking about. They're the ones required to provided contraceptive coverage, not the employer. You can try all you want to argue that the employers are providing birth control coverage, but you're wrong. I know that's the way you want to couch it so that you can feel put upon and play the role of victim of TYRANNY! but its simply inaccurate.
Now, see, that's a plain old lie. The mandate is on employers, not insurance companies. Insurance companies don't get fined; employers do.

(Of course, even if you were telling the truth, it would only change the victim of the government's coercion, not the fact of the coercion.)
   749. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:29 PM (#4684026)
Do you have equal problems with mandates for any coverage?
Do you have to ask?
Because every state enforces coverage minimums on health plans in that state.
I know; that's been one of the biggest factors contributing to the rise in health care spending.
   750. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:30 PM (#4684028)
it is a response to David N crying a river over corporate profit margins. Because you know ACA will certainly bankrupt them ALL (at gunpoint!).
I didn't say that the ACA will bankrupt them all. (Though I'm not sure why you think it's intelligent to lump together "corporations" into an undifferentiated mass.) I said that raising employee pay to the point where they wouldn't have to pay the fine for not providing coverage would bankrupt them.
   751. formerly dp Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:40 PM (#4684039)
The character's going away, from what I read. It was impressive that he pulled it off for as long as he did, and actually managed to get better as the years went along. There were some brilliant moments along the way-- the WH correspondent's dinner, testimony before congress, the Herman Cain campaign in South Carolina--and the show will be missed. I can't see this turning out well; in spite of Colbert's immense talent, late-night network comedy isn't a format where it's easy to be funny.
   752. zonk Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:41 PM (#4684041)
I didn't say that the ACA will bankrupt them all. (Though I'm not sure why you think it's intelligent to lump together "corporations" into an undifferentiated mass.) I said that raising employee pay to the point where they wouldn't have to pay the fine for not providing coverage would bankrupt them.


Might it be more accurate to say that some companies will now be faced with an additional cost burden, and inevitably, if the industry itself to which they do business, is actually needed by the market, then the efficient, best able to compete within the new reality companies within those industries will survive - even thrive - while the inefficient and poorly managed will fall by the wayside in the same manner that certain people have valuable skills that warrant compensation above some baseline, while other people don't have marketable skills and that's just tough luck for them....

   753. Shredder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:42 PM (#4684047)
I'll bet that every single 50+ company that doesn't offer insurance will be hit with the fine, unless they have the richest secretaries and janitorial staff in the world.
That's great. It's still a lie to say they can't avoid penalties. Pay their employees 400x the poverty level and they're all set. Should be easy since they're taking the insurance coverage away.
(Of course, even if you were telling the truth, it would only change the victim of the government's coercion, not the fact of the coercion.
Aw, man, it's no fun when you don't say AT GUNPOINT!!! They only get fined if they choose not to provide insurance and don't pay their employees enough for them to buy their own. It's their choice. Or they could, ya know, just get a policy with contraceptive coverage, instead of coming up with some phony-baloney moral objection.
   754. spike Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:44 PM (#4684049)
I agree on the late-night-is-hard, but from Jon Stewart - “He is a uniquely talented individual,” Stewart said. “He’s wonderful in Colbert Report, but he’s got gears he hasn’t even shown people yet. He would be remarkable.”
   755. Steve Treder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 04:56 PM (#4684062)
I agree on the late-night-is-hard, but from Jon Stewart - “He is a uniquely talented individual,” Stewart said. “He’s wonderful in Colbert Report, but he’s got gears he hasn’t even shown people yet. He would be remarkable.”

Among other things, Colbert has a fine singing voice. One can imagine the show incorporating some musical bits a la Jimmy Fallon.
   756. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 05:02 PM (#4684068)
As has been pointed out, those plans with vasectomies included have been mandated for years on end.
People may have "pointed out" that -- if so, I missed it -- but I don't believe that it's true, anyway.
And we heard crickets from the "religious freedom" crowd on the issue all that time. It was only when a different branch of the state, via a law passed by a Democratic administration, mandated equivalent requirement for women to have access to similar birth control options that the we heard this cry of tyranny and religious oppression.
You mean that there's more attention on a national law that was the subject of intense public debate than there is in a law passed in some backwater left-wing state legislature? What a shock.

Not to mention that the state coverage mandates, as ridiculous as they are, have not generally come coupled with an actual insurance mandate itself.
   757. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 05:05 PM (#4684071)
That's great. It's still a lie to say they can't avoid penalties. Pay their employees 400x the poverty level and they're all set. Should be easy since they're taking the insurance coverage away.
I assume even the nuttiest leftists only want 400% of the poverty level, not 400x the poverty level.
   758. Shredder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 05:08 PM (#4684078)
I assume even the nuttiest leftists only want 400% of the poverty level, not 400x the poverty level.
Correction noted.
   759. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 05:46 PM (#4684093)
That's great. It's still a lie to say they can't avoid penalties. Pay their employees 400x the poverty level and they're all set. Should be easy since they're taking the insurance coverage away.

Absurd. If the only way to avoid paying a penalty to the government is by paying an amount that's equal to or greater than the penalty to someone else, then the company is only "avoiding" the penalty in a semantic sense.
   760. GordonShumway Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:05 PM (#4684106)
Apologies in advance if I misinterpreted anyone’s views.

As a long-time lurker and occasional poster, I get the impression that neither DMN nor Joe K are religious conservatives. So why so much vitriol against the ACA mandate on birth control?

I hate the size of the welfare system, whether by the amount of dollars or of people, as much if not more than any card-carrying conservative. But it should be fairly obvious that one of the best ways to lower the number of people on the welfare system would be to make birth control, contraceptives, and abortion as cheap (if not free) and easily available as possible.

Sure, I agree that it’s silly for people to think that birth control through employee-sponsored health plans are a right and I also believe that the ACA mandate is an encroachment of liberty. But we live in a world of thousands, if not millions, of encroachments of liberty by the government and the ACA mandate is a laughably small one compared to innumerable larger ones.

I would ask DMN, Joe K, and any other compatriots why the wrongs of the ACA mandate on birth control, whatever they may be, outweigh the benefits of lowering the costs of the welfare system, both in terms of direct and indirect costs.
   761. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:18 PM (#4684112)
Go back to Melmac!
   762. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:21 PM (#4684113)
As a long-time lurker and occasional poster, I get the impression that neither DMN nor Joe K are religious conservatives. So why so much vitriol against the ACA mandate on birth control?


DMN vehemently opposes all ACA mandates on libertarian grounds.

   763. Spahn Insane Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:29 PM (#4684116)
DMN vehemently opposes all ACA mandates on libertarian grounds.

Fixed.

   764. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:30 PM (#4684117)
As a long-time lurker and occasional poster, I get the impression that neither DMN nor Joe K are religious conservatives. So why so much vitriol against the ACA mandate on birth control?

Except when mocking Sandra Fluke, I don't recall discussing the specific birth-control mandate much (if at all), but, among other reasons, I oppose it on religious-freedom grounds.

I hate the size of the welfare system, whether by the amount of dollars or of people, as much if not more than any card-carrying conservative. But it should be fairly obvious that one of the best ways to lower the number of people on the welfare system would be to make birth control, contraceptives, and abortion as cheap (if not free) and easily available as possible.

No doubt this is true, and while such a sentiment appeals strongly to my utilitarian streak, which probably rivals if not exceeds The Good Face's on many issues, I still have moral and legal reservations (and outright problems — e.g., I'm opposed to abortion except in cases of rape, incest, and when the life of the mother is at risk).

Sure, I agree that it’s silly for people to think that birth control through employee-sponsored health plans are a right and I also believe that the ACA mandate is an encroachment of liberty. But we live in a world of thousands, if not millions, of encroachments of liberty by the government and the ACA mandate is a laughably small one compared to innumerable larger ones.

Politically, I agree with the above, which is why I haven't made a lot of noise on the issue. But I'm also not a devoutly religious person who's being forced by the government to violate principles I consider inviolable.

I would ask DMN, Joe K, and any other compatriots why the wrongs of the ACA mandate on birth control, whatever they may be, outweigh the benefits of lowering the costs of the welfare system, both in terms of direct and indirect costs.

I don't believe certain rights should be bargained away in such a way.
   765. GordonShumway Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:49 PM (#4684127)
Go back to Melmac!


Alas, Melmac is no more. I weep for my homeland...
   766. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:51 PM (#4684128)
I don't believe certain rights should be bargained away in such a way.
the affordable care act doesn't mandate the use of birth control, only access to it. if you have religious objections to its use, you can choose not to use it. you have that freedom.

but claiming anything more under the ground of religious "freedom" is a dangerous precedent to flirt with.
   767. GordonShumway Posted: April 10, 2014 at 06:54 PM (#4684132)
Joe K: thanks for responding.

Upon re-reading the above posts more carefully (which I initially read very quickly in between breaks at work), I realize that I erroneously attributed some of DMN's posts to you, and assumed that you were a more vocal supporter of what he's advocating here.

My apologies.
   768. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 07:05 PM (#4684137)
the affordable care act doesn't mandate the use of birth control, only access to it. if you have religious objections to its use, you can choose not to use it. you have that freedom.

The ACA forces some employers to pay for something they believe is immoral. Whether that something is actually used or not by the beneficiaries is beside the point.

but claiming anything more under the ground of religious "freedom" is a dangerous precedent to flirt with.

In a country that was founded in large part on the basis of religious freedom, not really.

Indeed, not at all.

***
My apologies.

No problem.
   769. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 07:48 PM (#4684145)
A fair day's wage for a fair day's work is by far the best way for the Democrats to go after persuadable voters.

As if voters are unaware that equal pay for equal work has been the law for more than 50 years? The Equal Pay Act was passed in 1963, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also prohibited sex-based wage discrimination. Democrats are raising wage issues in 2014 out of political desperation rather than because more laws are needed. Won't work, IMHO.
   770. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 07:54 PM (#4684148)
Looks like Kathleen Sebelius is getting the Don Rumsfeld treatment, although before the election this time - Health Secretary Resigns After ObamaCare Woes:
Kathleen Sebelius, the health and human services secretary, is resigning, ending a stormy five-year tenure marred by the disastrous rollout of President Obama’s signature legislative achievement, the Affordable Care Act.

Mr. Obama accepted Ms. Sebelius’s resignation this week, and on Friday morning he will nominate Sylvia Mathews Burwell, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, to replace her, officials said.

Another sign of ObamaCare's success, I suppose.
   771. Morty Causa Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:00 PM (#4684149)
746:

Note taken.
   772. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:02 PM (#4684151)
Another sign of ObamaCare's success, I suppose.

Ezra Klein, on Twitter:

Kathleen Sebelius is resigning because Obamacare has won http://vox.com/e/5366711

I believe this is known as "Voxsplaining."
   773. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:02 PM (#4684152)
The ACA forces some employers to pay for something they believe is immoral. Whether that something is actually used or not by the beneficiaries is beside the point.
In a country that was founded in large part on the basis of religious freedom, not really.

Indeed, not at all.
why do you believe the employers' morality is more worthy of protection than the employee's?
   774. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:08 PM (#4684156)
why do you believe the employers' morality is more worthy of protection than the employee's?

Non sequitur. The employees are free to spend the money paid to them by their employer however they choose, so their "morality" isn't being affected or infringed in the slightest.
   775. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:10 PM (#4684157)
It's still a lie to say they can't avoid penalties. Pay their employees 400x the poverty level and they're all set. Should be easy since they're taking the insurance coverage away.

This has to be one of the most disingenuous comments in BBTF history - even after correcting the 400x to "400%" of the poverty line. Paying everybody at least $47,000 regardless of their job is not really possible for employers, and that is just the minimum for single-person households. A family of 4 would need more than $95,000 in earnings. It's almost impossible for an employer with any type of representative workforce to avoid the ObamaCare penalties. Which is why you don't see many folks making that argument.
   776. Morty Causa Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:13 PM (#4684159)
It's in the nature of community cohesiveness that all of its members, individually and in sub-groups, will have to do or support, maybe only tacitly, maybe only with taxes, things they don't like, think wrong, or even feel is immoral. That's the way it goes. Your sensibilities (or mine) is not a get-out-of-jail card that can be played at will. As has been noted, many people object to wars and other military adventures. And some places of business would still like to restrict the clientele they serve. Too damn bad. A complex social structure cannot function, or even survive, if it's constituents can opt out at will on every important obligation.
   777. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:17 PM (#4684160)
This makes no sense. The employees are free to spend the money paid to them by their employer however they choose, so their "morality" isn't being affected or infringed in the slightest.
what would stop the employer from firing that employee for their immoral use of birth control? if they're unwilling to pay (which is seriously overexpresing their burden) for birth control on the grounds that it's immoral, why shouldn't they fire that employee for using birth control on similar grounds.
   778. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:30 PM (#4684164)
what would stop the employer from firing that employee for their immoral use of birth control? if they're unwilling to pay (which is seriously overexpresing their burden) for birth control on the grounds that it's immoral, why shouldn't they fire that employee for using birth control on similar grounds.

I think this is known around here as "shifting the goalposts."
   779. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:40 PM (#4684166)
I think this is known around here as "shifting the goalposts."
no, it's taking the conversation to its logical conclusion. if this part of the ACA can be overturned on the basis of religious freedom, what stops that standard from applying to any other law that some job creator finds immoral?
   780. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:44 PM (#4684168)
no, it's taking the conversation to its logical conclusion. if this part of the ACA can be overturned on the basis of religious freedom, what stops that standard from applying to any other law that some job creator finds immoral?

Not sure what you're getting at here. Religious freedom means religious freedom.

Food is more of a necessity than birth control. Some places of employment offer their employees lavish dining areas with dozens of choices; others have a vending machine that spits out stale chips; still others have no on-site food or beverage options at all. Are employees of the latter two having their rights violated by their employers?
   781. formerly dp Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:48 PM (#4684169)
A complex social structure cannot function, or even survive, if it's constituents can opt out at will on every important obligation.
The Enlightenment isn't without problems, but on balance it has been a good deal for religious folks. Not sure why they're so insistent on rolling it back-- maybe they don't realize how well it's working out for them.
   782. Morty Causa Posted: April 10, 2014 at 08:57 PM (#4684172)
Not to mention that the Constitution was never intended to be an expression of natural/absolute law/rights.

Moreover, there are points where there is and can be contention between those constitutional rights. You have no right to shout in a crowded theater "Come outside, it's the rapture!" than you do "Fire!" You can't get away from thinking, no matter how many stone tablets you'd like for us to tote.
   783. Morty Causa Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:01 PM (#4684173)
The Enlightenment isn't without problems, but on balance it has been a good deal for religious folks. Not sure why they're so insistent on rolling it back-- maybe they don't realize how well it's working out for them.

Yes, there was a time in the West, as it is still in some places, when government had not made religion subservient to the secular. How did that work out? First, the religious want to do away with government's prerogative in this regard, then comes going for each other's throat, not to mention the jugular of those each deems as insufficiently devotional.
   784. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:01 PM (#4684174)
As a long-time lurker and occasional poster, I get the impression that neither DMN nor Joe K are religious conservatives. So why so much vitriol against the ACA mandate on birth control?
I don't oppose the Obamacare mandate on birth control per se; I don't have any personal objections to contraception. If I were running a company I'd have no problem offering health insurance that included such coverage (if I had a legal choice, I mean). Rather, I oppose Obamacare's contraceptive mandate because I oppose all the Obamacare mandates. It just happens that the contraceptive mandate is the one for which there is currently a viable legal challenge, so it's the focus of the current debate.

I hate the size of the welfare system, whether by the amount of dollars or of people, as much if not more than any card-carrying conservative. But it should be fairly obvious that one of the best ways to lower the number of people on the welfare system would be to make birth control, contraceptives, and abortion as cheap (if not free) and easily available as possible.
Contraception is easily available, and while there's some evidence that the truly poor -- i.e., people on welfare -- may benefit from handouts, there's no reason to believe that there's going to be any significant effect for the people to whom the Obamacare contraceptive mandate applies: full time employees. That having been said, I'm not a utilitarian anyway; while I would like to reduce welfare spending, that isn't the way to do it. No, the )
   785. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:02 PM (#4684175)
Not sure what you're getting at here. Religious freedom means religious freedom.
for who? if an employers claim of religious freedom infringes on an employees expression of theirs, it is not possible for both of them to be protected.

in this case, the employers claim of religious freedom violates the employees. so, again i ask, why do you believe that the employers rights are more worthy of protection.
   786. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:07 PM (#4684178)
what would stop the employer from firing that employee for their immoral use of birth control? if they're unwilling to pay (which is seriously overexpresing their burden) for birth control on the grounds that it's immoral, why shouldn't they fire that employee for using birth control on similar grounds.
Setting aside the fact that the employer would have no way of knowing whether an employee used birth control, from a libertarian perspective the employer ought to have the right to fire the employee for any reason at all. But the Hobby Lobby cases aren't based on libertarian arguments; they're based on the RFRA. There's no reductio ad absurdum for the RFRA; each exemption has to be individually evaluated.

(And, at least from a Catholic or Jewish perspective, it would not be a burden on the employer's religion if the employee buys contraception with his/her own money. Can't address how protestants or others would view it.)
   787. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:11 PM (#4684179)
in this case, the employers claim of religious freedom violates the employees. so, again i ask, why do you believe that the employers rights are more worthy of protection.
No, it doesn't violate the employee's. Indeed, unless you can find an employee whose religion demands that his/her employer provide him with birth control, it doesn't even touch upon the employee's religion.
   788. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:12 PM (#4684180)
A complex social structurefascist society cannot function, or even survive, if it's constituents can opt out at will on every important obligation.
FIFY.
   789. GordonShumway Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:12 PM (#4684181)
I don't oppose the Obamacare mandate on birth control per se; I don't have any personal objections to contraception. If I were running a company I'd have no problem offering health insurance that included such coverage (if I had a legal choice, I mean). Rather, I oppose Obamacare's contraceptive mandate because I oppose all the Obamacare mandates. It just happens that the contraceptive mandate is the one for which there is currently a viable legal challenge, so it's the focus of the current debate.


...

Contraception is easily available, and while there's some evidence that the truly poor -- i.e., people on welfare -- may benefit from handouts, there's no reason to believe that there's going to be any significant effect for the people to whom the Obamacare contraceptive mandate applies: full time employees. That having been said, I'm not a utilitarian anyway; while I would like to reduce welfare spending, that isn't the way to do it. No, the )



DMN: Fair enough - thanks for responding.
   790. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:16 PM (#4684184)
Indeed, unless you can find an employee whose religion demands that his/her employer provide him with birth control,

I believe these are known as "Democrats."
   791. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:17 PM (#4684187)
Looks like the Democrats' equal pay strategy, using the discredited claim* that women make only 77% of what men earn is already backfiring, since many Democrats don't fare very well by that measure:
- Mark Udall pays women 85 cents for every dollar that a man makes.
- Mary Landrieu pays women 88 cents for every dollar that a man makes.
- Mark Begich pays women 82 cents for every dollar that a man makes.
- Mark Warner pays women 75 cents for every dollar that a man makes.
- Gary Peters pays women 67 cents for every dollar that a man makes.

They are all on the Senate ballot this year, and will have to explain why the WH methodology is wrong. Hard to do that while "whipping up the base" on the same issue. And more generally, the Obama White House's pay gap is more than double the average for Washington, DC using that methodology.

* The "77%" claim doesn't control for hours worked, education, occupation, experience and other relevant factors.
   792. zenbitz Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:23 PM (#4684192)
Actually the current US per capita GDP is about $50,000. So it doesn't seem *thermodynamically* impossible.
   793. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:26 PM (#4684195)
No, it doesn't violate the employee's. Indeed, unless you can find an employee whose religion demands that his/her employer provide him with birth control, it doesn't even touch upon the employee's religion.
you've made my point.
the employee's religion doesn't prohibit the use of birth control so this case is about the employer's attempt to impose their own religious beliefs on their employees.


that should not be acceptable to anyone in this country.
   794. Joe Kehoskie Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:31 PM (#4684197)
you've made my point.
the employee's religion doesn't prohibit the use of birth control so this case is about the employer's attempt to impose their own religious beliefs on their employees.


that should not be acceptable to anyone in this country.

You've got to be kidding. The employee's religion has nothing to do with this.
   795. Lassus Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:41 PM (#4684201)
I believe this is known as "Voxsplaining."

I don't even know what vox.com is, but I'm going to use this opportunity to say that "Vox" by Nicholson Baker is an excellent book.
   796. steagles Posted: April 10, 2014 at 09:50 PM (#4684203)
You've got to be kidding. The employee's religion has nothing to do with this.
if an employee's rights are being restricted on grounds of religious freedom, their own religious beliefs should absolutely be considered.

   797. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 10:16 PM (#4684209)
How bad is the outlook for Senate Democrats? It looks like some of the rats are jumping ship:
Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), who caucuses with the Democrats, will decide after the midterm elections whether to switch sides and join the Republicans. He is leaving open the possibility of aligning himself with the GOP if control of the upper chamber changes.

Not sure the GOP will want him, absent a commitment beyond 2016, unless it is otherwise a 50-50 split.
   798. tshipman Posted: April 10, 2014 at 10:47 PM (#4684223)
Not sure the GOP will want him, absent a commitment beyond 2016, unless it is otherwise a 50-50 split.


Probably has something to do with some disagreement w/Reid over committee membership or something stupid like that. Most of those things typically are. Senators (of both parties) are remarkably vain.

***

Re: Religious Liberty:

I don't understand how:
1. Corporations can have religious beliefs.
2. An employer should be allowed to be the sole decider of how you spend one part of your compensation (health care), but not another part of your compensation (wages).
3. The difference between contraception and other forms of religious expression. Should a Jehovah's Witness employer be able to ban diabetic employees from testing their glucose levels? Why not? Edit: Should a Muslim employer be able to insist on female employees wearing a veil?
   799. Steve Treder Posted: April 10, 2014 at 10:50 PM (#4684224)
Because the entire thing is horsesh!t.
   800. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 10, 2014 at 11:04 PM (#4684231)
Flip.
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