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 — which isn’t actually a thing that exists — 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!