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Um, except for two idiot Senate candidates who went down in flames, it was the Democrats who were pushing so-called "social" issues this election cycle with radical positions like forcing everyone to buy health insurance that includes contraceptives, whether they wanted to or not.

Saying the employer or the insurer is one paying for the contraceptives is economic nonsense -- the cost ultimately comes out of the employees' pockets. Should, say, a woman who's gone through menopause or a gay man really have to pay higher health insurance premiums to subsidize someone else's birth control? Given that birth control pills are legal and cheap (~$10 a month at Walgreens) this was really just about trying to create a wedge issue by scaring people with a phony controversy.

And after being in office for four years, Obama waited until about five minutes before the election, when the polls showed support was turning in its favor, to announce his very tepid support for gay marriage. Not exactly, a shining example of leading on principle.




Hacker News is a global forum. A universal health care system that includes contraceptive coverage is nowhere near radical by worldwide standards. Plenty of countries have exactly that.


A few more years, and barring total failure to push the reforms through, repealing healthcare provisions will quickly become totally politically unpalatable in the US too.

Just like the Conservatives in the UK had to turn 180 a few years after the National Health Service was established because it was that or cease to exist as a realistic contender once people saw the effects the existence of the NHS had on their lives.

I think this is part of the reason why the republicans fought this issue so desperately: It is going to be almost impossible to reverse once people experience the full effects.


Should a single man really have to subsidize care for a woman with breast cancer, or a six year old with an inoperable brain tumor?

Shut the fuck up. Healthcare choices are to the individual and the doctor, not to the insurer or the government.

If you don't want to subsidize health, go live in Somolia.


>Shut the fuck up. Healthcare choices are to the individual and the doctor, not to the insurer or the government.

Exhibit 23239 in favor of the argument: politics should not be allowed on this site.


If you don't want to subsidize health, go live in Somolia.

If you love government mandates so much, move to North Korea. See how silly that is?

The real question we should be asking is why employers have anything to do with health insurance in the first place.


"If you love government mandates so much, move to North Korea".

Or Sweden, Canada, England or France. That's the thing. There's plenty of examples of advanced countries with a government run healthcare system.

There are zero examples of advanced countries that do things the way conservatives say would lead to prosperity.


You seem to have missed "See how silly that is?"


It's not silly. All countries with no government or almost no government are hellholes. Whereas, since the fall of the soviet union, most countries with more government than the US are pretty nice.

So, it's not silly to say 'try somalia if you want zero government'. It is silly to say 'try north korea if you want more government', especially since north korea provides fewer government services than western states.


If you don't want to subsidize health, go live in Somolia.

Opposition to government-subsidized healthcare is not anarchism.

So yes, it is silly, to put it nicely.


Can you give me an example of a country without government subsidized healthcare you'd like to live in?


Would you classify the US during the 1990s as a hellhole? The federal government was spending 30% less per capita than it does today, adjusted for inflation.

So, it's not silly to say 'try somalia if you want zero government'.

It's very silly, because it implies that the alternative to spending $3.8 trillion a year is to dismantle core government services.


And all of that difference is either defense spending or entitlements that caught up to us because of the baby boomer population bump. Not 'services' as most people would understand you meaning them.

Domestic discretionary spending has actually been falling relative to inflation the last 12 years. (http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/feb/...)


Because every time somebody proposes that we do it sensibly everybody decides to do their best Joseph McCarthy impression.


Yes, because it's the absolutely the same thing. There's really no difference between $10 a month birth control pills and cancer treatment.

When the government writes thousands of pages of regulations precisely dictating what type of health insurance coverage individuals are required to purchase and how doctors are required to provide and charge for their services, then healthcare choices aren't being made by "the individual and the doctor", they're being made by a remote, unaccountable, unelected bureaucracy.

By all means, let's subsidize health care for low income people. I think there are very few people other than hardcore libertarians who don't want their to be some kind of a safety net that includes health care for those who need it but can't afford it. The point is that a national political party that chooses to make free contraception into a major electoral issue in the middle of an economic crisis is fundamentally unserious.




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