FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
Above politics, above dissent
The White House furies were swiftly unleashed across social media in the wake of the Supreme Court agreeing to hear Hobby Lobby’s case against the ObamaCare mandates, which force the owners of the craft superstore to violate their religious beliefs. Democrat politicians and their volunteer lefty auxiliaries bleated the “War on Women” line that mean old religious fanatics want to tell free-spirited women how to live their lives.
“Birth control is basic health care for millions of women – employers shouldn’t get to take that away,” shrieked one pre-packaged Twitter message. Democrats circulated images of a mock “rejection letter” from “your boss” declaring, “The Affordable Care Act promised free contraception coverage for all women. But a Supreme Court decision overturned that guarantee and gave employers an opportunity to deny such coverage. As a result, we have chosen to rejection your contraception coverage.”
As usual, Democrats are a pack of miserable liars who assume their constituents are stupid and easily-stampeded, and it’s probably a safe bet. Just for starters, Hobby Lobby doesn’t object to covering all contraceptives; they’re primarily concerned with abortifacient drugs. But even if they did profess an objection to paying for any contraception coverage, that would hardy be equivalent to “denying” anyone access to anything. Insurance coverage is not needed to purchase birth control. It’s cheap and readily available everywhere. And while we discuss contraception under the rubric of “health care,” birth control is hardly a “basic health care” necessity. It’s beyond stupid to accuse employers who refuse to provide it of “taking it away.”
And even if insurance plans cover birth control supplies, that doesn’t make them “free.” There’s no more obvious indicator of the extremely low esteem Democrats hold their constituents in. Benefits covered by other people are not free – that’s as silly as a carjacker bragging about the free automobile he’s driving. Even more to the point, these ObamaCare plans are fabulously expensive. What kind of fool celebrates scoring ten or twenty bucks’ worth of “free” party favors, after paying two or three hundred dollars more for insurance?
That’s one aspect of one-size-fits-nobody government control. The magic of ObamaCare is the use of heavy-handed government control to find the worst of all possible worlds, offending both religious and economic liberty to create a managed marketplace that is both unjust and inefficient. It’s all part of an elaborate game to conceal raw wealth transfers beneath the technocratic veneer of “reform,” administered through a system that allows the Ruling Class to reward its allies and manipulate the populace… for example, by dangling “free” goodies before them, and persuading them to hate anyone who would “deny” their just rewards.
Surely one of the strangest aspects of ObamaCare’s assault on religious liberty is the routine insistence that it’s non-political or non-ideological. Those who dissent from the judgment of the elite are portrayed as oppressors. President Obama allegedly believes “no one, including the government or for-profit corporations, should dictate birth control decisions to women.” Then why is he dictating them?
This is part of the same mind-set that led to Obama’s jaw-dropping opinion, delivered to Democrat donors in Seattle yesterday, that he’s “not a particularly ideological person.” You see, the judgment of the Lightworker and his team of benevolent genius central planners is beyond ideology. There is no legitimate dissent from their rule – everyone who disagrees with Barack Obama is a racist, terrorist, traitor, oppressor, or greedy S.O.B. – so how can you call him an “ideologue?” He is the fountain of all wisdom. The Sun has no ideology, and need win no political contests to rise each morning.
In a similar vein, these contraceptive mandates are edicts handed down from Olympus, higher than any personal conviction or religious teaching. Birth control and abortion are sacraments. Refusing to buy them for other people constitutes “denying them access” to their sacred entitlement. No price is too low to give offense, because an absolute good should be funded by the collective whole, under the wise guidance of Big Government theocracy. There is no legitimate dissent from these commands, so the rulers who impose them are not playing politics or dictating morality. Only their adversaries can be guilty of such offenses. Never mind that five minutes ago, it was considered entirely normal to expect people to buy their own birth control down at the local drug store. What the Ruling Class judges good swiftly becomes essential, and what is essential must also be “free.”
That’s another way the Ruling Class expresses its contempt for the witless serfs, who cannot be trusted to make decisions for themselves. Even the smallest out-of-pocket price for the sacrament of birth control might prompt them to spend the money elsewhere, so they must be led to the right decision by making it free of charge.
Another remarkable comment President Obama made during his fundraising swing through Seattle was his opinion that the biggest “barrier and impediment we have right now is the Congress, in particular the House of Representatives.” What’s funny is that the same man bristles at suggestions that he’s a dictator. Of course he is, and obviously he thinks he should be. Every dictator views dissent as an unacceptable “impediment” to “progress.” Parliamentary procedure is always castigated as a frustrating speed bump on the road to Paradise. And there are always receptive ears for these arguments, because people generally dislike political squabbling, and expect the government to function with the decisive efficiency of a well-run corporation.
But consider the corollary of this distaste for politics and ideology: it’s another way of saying that important decisions should be raised beyond the reach of individual conscience, personal judgment, or even popular will. We draw ever closer to a singularity of power, in which a (hopefully) benevolent dictator is elected every four years, and total submission to his agenda is expected until we get a chance to “fire” him during the next election. That’s not the way a Republic is supposed to work. Instead of cursing “gridlock,” we should be suspicious of any Big Government plan that can draw enough sustained opposition from our elected representatives to be gridlocked. We should not accept periodic elections as a sufficient check on power. “Freedom” is not the right to cast one vote in millions, to decide which of your next two or three prospective masters you like better.
And we should have absolutely zero patience for lectures from the Ruling Class about what we’re allowed to argue with. This piffle about “denying access” to contraception is another way of saying that submission to political authority, in an increasingly large majority of daily life, is mandatory. There shouldn’t be so many irresistible demands placed upon free people. If the ObamaCare mandate survives… if ObamaCare itself survives… you can bet there will be more. You’ll be amazed to learn what you are not permitted to “take away” next.