FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
Congress’ fiduciary duty to repeal ObamaCare
As I was putting together the latest roundup of horrible ObamaCare news, I found myself wondering how Congress could reconcile a failure to repeal or defund this disaster with their basic fiduciary duty to the American taxpayer. I know this will sound hopelessly quaint, but the government is supposed to be a careful steward of our public treasury. The treasury is filled with property confiscated from its rightful owners by force. This is morally justified on the grounds that vital services must be performed for the general public. Of course we have great debates over how “vital” any of these “services” are, but even the biggest Big Government enthusiast should agree that government at every level must be careful with the taxpayers’ money.
But would the current crop of statists and socialists even think of public money in those terms? By which I mean the “taxpayers’ money” formulation. They don’t see it that way at all. They think all money and resources are the rightful property of the State and the ruling class. We should be grateful for what they allow us to keep. Actually, they don’t even extend us the courtesy of seeing it as money we “keep,” because they don’t think it was ever the property of those who earned it. Think that’s hyperbole? Recall the last debate over tax increases, and the one before that, and the one before that. Remember that tax reductions are always portrayed as a “gift” to plutocrats by their Republican friends. The Bush tax cuts were a “party” that nobody wanted to pay for. Tax relief for private industry is something liberals always say “we” can’t “afford,” as though referring to boxed Christmas presents purchased at a department store.
Perhaps that’s why no one on the Left seems even slightly concerned about the staggering levels of waste, fraud, and abuse in government programs. They don’t view this as outrageous carelessness with property taxed from its rightful owners. They don’t think it’s a violation of the sacred bond between taxpayers and government. Liberals are increasingly disinterested in talking to “taxpayers” at all. The people who pull the socialist sled are far less important than the people riding around on it. Fraud doesn’t trouble those people unless it reaches levels that would prevent government agencies from functioning, or growing. We are nowhere near that point, so who cares if scam artists are effortlessly stuffing their pockets with taxpayer-financed ObamaPhones, ripping off the gigantic food stamp program, or stealing tax refunds?
It’s also remarkable to see Big Government’s energetic handmaidens untroubled by the IRS scandal. Abuse of their precious mega-bureaucracies should fill them with rage. The sacred temple of the State has been violated. Vast powers accumulated for the good of The People have been turned to sinister purpose. The outcome of a presidential election can be fairly questioned, due to voter suppression – a sacrilege against radiant Democracy. That should fill the people who think free elections sanctify limitless political power with blind rage. It certainly would if the victims were, say, environmental and civil-rights groups. But the victims are Tea Party and pro-life undesirables, while fallout from investigating the scandal would do enormous damage to the Democrats, so the party of Big Government not only doesn’t care, they aggressively wish to bury the whole unsightly mess.
And now we’ve got ObamaCare, which will invite even further abuses of power from vast government agencies, including the IRS. In fact, a high official linked to the IRS abuse-of-power scandal will be running ObamaCare enforcement. We’ve learned that the computer systems for the ObamaCare exchanges are running months behind schedule, raising serious concerns about security. “The most likely serious security breach would be identity theft,” says Reuters. “A hacker could steal the Social Security numbers and other information that people provide when signing up for insurance.”
If you think the rest of the welfare state is hideously vulnerable to abuse, wait until you get a load of ObamaCare fraud. The minimal security measures have been swept away by Obama’s illegal rollback of the employer mandate. The whole thing will be running on the honor system until employers finally begin submitting data in 2015. The Heritage Foundation notes there is a $2,500 cap on repayments for incorrectly claimed subsidies, which is a rock-solid cash-money incentive to grab more than $2,500 in extra subsidies by under-reporting income.
Even before the scam artists get busy, Obama’s mandate delay will cost taxpayers $12 billion. Not a single Democrat batted a single eyelash over this astounding waste of public money. A tax cut worth half that much would have been assailed as an expensive gift to the rich that government cannot possibly afford.
Leaving aside everything else that’s wrong with ObamaCare, how can Congress possibly vote to fund a system guaranteed to expose taxpayers to rampant looting of the public treasury, not to mention identity theft? With every cost projection from the hucksters who wrote the Affordable Care Act exposed as a ridiculous fantasy, how can any representative with a shred of responsibility vote to detonate a trillion-dollar deficit bomb? They really should repeal ObamaCare in full, immediately, and get to work on real market-based reforms that would actually improve the cost and availability of health care. (When are we going to learn that the cost and availability of everything are inseparably related?)
But if full repeal is politically impossible due to this out-of-touch President’s veto pen, I call upon every member of Congress, from both parties, to fulfill their essential financial duty to the American people and defund this disaster. If you won’t do it, please spare us any further prattle about your “public service” or “oath of office.” You know nothing of either service or oath-keeping.