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If the .gov can make you buy health insurance

Heh:

Five South Dakota lawmakers have introduced legislation that would require any adult 21 or older to buy a firearm “sufficient to provide for their ordinary self-defense.”

Says a cosponsor:

“Do I or the other cosponsors believe that the State of South Dakota can require citizens to buy firearms? Of course not. But at the same time, we do not believe the federal government can order every citizen to buy health insurance,” he said.

Now, I do find it amusing but, really, is this something elected officials should be spending time on?

Update: Glenn has more, noting it’s not as silly as it seems.

19 Responses to “If the .gov can make you buy health insurance”

  1. Bryan S. Says:

    Actually, that is very reasonable. In fact, since this requirement is in place, then good, not basic, safety should be required in all SD schools.

  2. Reputo Says:

    Absolutely they should spend time on this, especially if it keeps them from spending time on abridging other rights.

  3. Shootin' Buddy Says:

    “is this something elected officials should be spending time on?”

    Without question.

    As Ann Coulter said last night, if Congress introduced a bill requiring every American to buy a Bible and a gun, health care reform would be repealed overnight.

    As an aside, the RKBA started as a duty. In England and in the colonies males were required to be armed.

    Far more precedent for requiring guns and Bibles than health insurance.

  4. Maxpwr Says:

    In 1792, Congress required each man to provide his own musket or flintlock as a condition of Militia service. There is a constitutional basis for the Militia. There is no constitutional basis for purchasing health insurance.

  5. hillbilly Says:

    This is exactly the type of thing they should spend time on, so long as that abomination of an individual-mandate health insurance scam is law of the land.

  6. Jay Says:

    Congress requires me to buy a house. I pay a penalty on my income taxes every year because I don’t.

  7. junyo Says:

    Congress requires me to buy a house. I pay a penalty on my income taxes every year because I don’t.

    Is this renter’s penalty new? Hint: Absence of reward != Penalty

  8. Gunmart Says:

    Here is video of Obama himself back in 2008 saying you cant do a mandate because it would be the same as forcing people to buy a house:

    http://gunmart.blogspot.com/2011/02/video-obama-opposed-health-insurance.html

  9. mikee Says:

    I decry the South Dakota legislators prejudicial pronouncement that everyone must purchase a firearm sufficient for everyday self defense! Is there to be no exception allowed in this legislation for a trusty longsword, a halberd, a mace, a longbow, or that modern abomination of firepower, the crossbow? If the ammo runs out, I’ll wager all those firearm owners would give their eye teeth for a trusty longsword!

  10. Standard Mischief Says:

    Actually I would have no problem with this mandate, as long as there were a few exceptions:

    1) An exemption for anyone who cares to registrar themselves as religiously prohibited from self-defense. This list should be publicly avaiable.

    2) An exemption for anyone willing to pay a yearly $200 “common defense” tax and to wave their franchise. This would also get you out of jury duty. I might wish to change the amount of the tax, but by paying the tax you should get privacy.

    3) paupers exemption: Anyone willing to post a sign on their front door, at least 8×10 inches with 72 point type, the following: “Opposed to firearm ownership, no firearms are kept in this household”

    4) paupers exemption 2: If someone meets income criteria, and is willing to pass basic firearms training given by volunteers, they can get on a waiting list to be issued functional firearms seized from criminals by the state, (after due process). Their personal info is only made public _after_ they are awarded their firearm.

  11. Jay Says:

    junyo: There is no difference (other than a semantic one) between charging me more taxes because I don’t have a home loan and charging me a fee because I don’t buy health insurance.

  12. junyo Says:

    Jay: But you’re not charged more taxes because you don’t have a home loan. For a given level of income, you pay the same tax. Mortgage interest is deductible from the tax basis, but depending on your interest rate, the price of your home, and your other deductions it can work out to less than the standard deduction. Or if you have enough other itemized deductions you can pay less taxes on the same level of income regardless of whether or not you own a home. So not an automatic home loan = tax break. Which is vastly different than saying that if you don’t buy a product, whether you want or need it and whether it makes economic sense, you own the government a check. For the situations to be analogous, the government would have needed to raise taxes across the board, and offered a rebate for people that bought health insurance.

    Also you’ll get no argument from me that the government putting their thumb on the scale of the home mortgage business isn’t the greatest idea in the world.

  13. Bram Says:

    How is it that our Congress and this State Senator are so stupid that they don’t know the limits of their powers? The states have far more power over our lives than the Federal Government, they have just surrendered them all to the Feds – because the Feds can print money.

  14. Jay Says:

    “For the situations to be analogous, the government would have needed to raise taxes across the board, and offered a rebate for people that bought health insurance.”

    My point is that this is a semantic difference. The government could have written the law that way, and it would have literally been indistinguishable in its effects.

  15. SPQR Says:

    But the Democrats explicitly and intentionally did not write the law that way, Jay.

  16. Chas Says:

    Mandatory gun ownership. Great way to drive the commie libs from the state, just like they’ve been doing to us in California and New Jersey.
    No gun? Then they face fines and imprisonment. Bring the power of a gun toting government down on them for a change and see how they like. Might give them a newfound respect for our perspective. They might no longer think that it’s just all fun and games to force laws on gun owners.

  17. Jay Says:

    SPQR, there is NO difference between (a) raising my taxes by $100 and giving me $100 back if I do something, and (b) requiring me to do that thing and fining me $100 if I don’t.

    They use system (a) to encourage home ownership, and system (b) to compel health coverage, but they are really identical systems. Sure the language of the law is different, but there is no difference between them in reality.

  18. Ian Argent Says:

    Reminder – the mortgage home interest deduction is a holdover from the Reagan Tax Reform – prior to that ALL interest was deductible. For businesses, I think certain forms of interest still are.

    It’s also only deductible to a certain income limit (separate from AMT), and only a certain amount is deductible.

  19. Ian Argent Says:

    So, no, it was not developed to encourage home ownership.

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