When I was having a little discussion on Facebook about the fine that Hobby Lobby will soon incur because its owners don’t understand that a) businesses aren’t religious organizations and b) emergency contraception doesn’t cause abortions, I managed to incur the wrath of liberty-loving Colorado State Senator Tim Neville, who compared the Affordable Care Act with the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 … since mandating that employers provide access to health insurance and mandating the return of slaves to their owners are pretty much identical.
Not only is the Affordable Care Act tantamount to slavery, he notes, it’s also socialism … which leads inexorably to slavery.
According to Neville, one should never have to pay a tax to operate a business nor should one ever have to violate the tenets of his religious faith … even, it seems, if those tenets are entirely made up by the individual or violate the rights of others.
Neville concluded his lesson in liberty by arguing that a far better option than the health care that’s subsidized by my employer would be for me “to visit ehealthinsurance.com and choose a high deductible insurance plan with a health savings account, allowing opportunities to lower your cost of insurance by choosing a policy that covers what you need.”
So … the best way to increase liberty for everyone is for me to pay more for my health care needs. Because let’s not fool ourselves, that’s what “a high deductible insurance plan” means: When I go to the doctor for a well visit, I pay that high deductible. When my child has a persistent cough and then later an ear infection and then later needs vaccinations or to see a specialist, I pay that high deductible and then I pay it again and then I pay it again. When my wife needs surgery, I pay that high deductible.
And I’d better plan at the beginning of the year for any and every health care needs that we might have all year long. Because if I plan wrong, we might end up bankrupt. Or maybe we’ll only have to decide not to vaccinate our kids since it’s prohibitively expensive.
In Neville’s world, this makes sense … either because he has a lot of money or because he’s not worried about having a bunch of health care needs this year. Or both!
This is liberty and anything else is slavery, as far as Neville is concerned. No one should ever have to do anything he doesn’t want to do … except pay a high deductible for every single health issue that arises. This is, apparently, the only way that Hobby Lobby can maintain its corporate religious freedom: By not paying fines for freely choosing to deny coverage of certain reproductive health care options to female employees … because those women shouldn’t be making those reproductive health choices in the first place (since Neville and others like him believe they are “morally problematic).
Incidentally, here’s a little news item about the way that Neville got appointed to his state senate seat:
A Republican vacancy committee on Thursday night denied veteran state Rep. Jim Kerr, R-Littleton, a promotion to the upper chamber by the narrowest of margins and instead chose activist Tim Neville to take over for retiring Senate Minority Leader Mike Kopp. But the proceedings turned sour after the 60-58 vote was confirmed in a supervised recount as Kerr supporters charged that a handful of Republicans who should have voted hadn’t been notified of the meeting.
Liberty! Freedom! Having things handed to you on a silver platter! Corporations are people!
A pair of Wisconsin parents took a decidedly modern approach toward punishing their daughter when she misbehaved recently: They confiscated her phone and used it to take several photos of themselves doing silly faces, which they subsequently uploaded to her Facebook page.
The best, worst parents ever.
US police reportedly detained a Marine Corps veteran in a mental hospital over Facebook posts, triggering outrage in the online community. Brandon J. Raub claimed the FBI was concerned about his “calling for the arrest of government officials.”
Raub, 26, is now being held in the John Randolph Behavioral Health psychiatric ward. In an online interview with local media, Raub’s mother reported that her son’s hearing is due to take place later on Monday. Raub claimed in a phone interview that he was brought to the ward against his will.
FBI and Secret Service officials said that Raub wasn’t arrested on specific charges, and declined to comment further, local newspaper the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. Police officials allege they were only tasked with transporting Raub, and had no hand in his being interred in a mental health institution.
Raub was confronted by FBI agents at his home on Thursday and taken away in handcuffs. He was then reportedly questioned over several incendiary Facebook posts he made. “They were concerned about me calling for the arrest of government officials,” Raub said.
The Richmond FBI office said they had received a complaint about Raub’s “threatening posts.”
The video of the detention emerged on YouTube and immediately went viral, earning 67,000 views in the handful of hours after the footage was posted.
“I talked to a Secret Service gentleman for 20, 30 minutes. I was very cooperative and answered everything honestly. I really love America, and I think that idea that you can be detained and sent somewhere without due process and a lawyer … is crazy,” Raub told local media in a phone interview.
Raub posted Facebook messages that suggested that the US government was behind the 9/11 attacks, and signed a petition to re-open the investigation into the terrorist act.
“If you are unaware of the great amount of evil perpetrated by the American Government I suggest you take… your head out of the sand. The day of reckoning is almost at hand,” he wrote on August 5. He authored a later post saying,“The Revolution is here. And I will lead it.”
A Facebook group supporting Raub has been created, and has over 3,000 members. Raub served in the US Marine Corps from 2005 to 2011, and was a combat engineer Sergeant in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This is from my hometown.
Besides the hype, besides the technical fuckups of NASDAQ, besides the overvaluation and offering too many shares during their IPO, I think the reason Facebook’s stock is failing as much as it is right now is that people have come to realize that Everybody’s Favorite Social Network is just too obnoxious, intrusive, and data-scrapingly assholish in the way it treats everyone from its most ardent users to, sadly, people on third-party platforms like, I dunno, TUMBLR, that perhaps want nothing at all to do with the privacy black hole that is Mark Zuckerberg’s dickishness incarnate but wake up and log on to find THIS UTTER BULLSHIT.
I go on Tumblr to be on Tumblr, Tumblr. Please leave the shitty Facebook tactics to Facebook.
"Whatever happened, one thing is indisputable. The little guy (by which I mean the retail investor, who probably isn’t really a “little guy” as compared to someone who’s on unemployment or facing foreclosure) got screwed. And along with Facebook, the key parties involved in the screwing included Facebook’s three biggest underwriting banks, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan.
Why do those names sound familiar? Oh that’s right — they were key players in wrecking the economy of the United States by screwing around with mortgage-backed securities. And if you want to go even further back, they were all hip-deep in the IPO scandals that made the dot-com boom such a minefield of fraud and get-rich-quick scams. (Indeed, one of the weirder ironic twists to the Facebook story is the sight of Business Insider founder Henry Blodget, who was himself banned for life from the securities industry for fraudulently hyping dot-com stocks, waxing aggrieved at the improprieties involved in the IPO.)"