I was in Washinton DC on the day that the United States Supreme Court was hearing arguments on the constitutionality of the individual mandate in the controversial health care law known as “Obamacare”. The area in front of the court was filled with activists on both sides of the issue. As I approached the courthouse I saw a group of people departing, which appeared to be SEIU members. They were discussing what sounded like compensation for their brief shift on the sidewalk in front of the Courthouse. There are several mentions of $20 that was given to each of them in a brown envelope.
As Nancy Pelosi might say, we call that astroturf.
March 28, 2012 at 10:34 am
Right, and I’m sure no one was compensated to protest Obamacare. Way to keep an open mind.
Martin M. McMartin
March 28, 2012 at 10:48 am
John P., I found no evidence of any anti-Obamacare protesters being compensated, who exactly do you think would pay these patriots? The Unions were very involved in organizing this demonstration on the anti-liberty side and unions have a history of paying people to protest. There is no such history on the pro-liberty side but thanks for commenting.
March 28, 2012 at 11:57 am
I agree with you fully that the unions have a history of paying people to protest. I also think it’s ludicrous that they do.
But not only do I completely disagree with your skewed description of calling it ‘anti-liberty’ and ‘pro-liberty’ sides (that’s hardly what I’d called “balanced,” and assumes no middle ground), but if I associate your described ‘pro-liberty’ with the GOP (can we agree on that?), there certainly is a history. Both Dem and GOP parties have paid protesters in the past; it’s a standard (and awful) practice, whether people are paying in envelopes or behind the scenes. And if you think otherwise, you’re tricking yourself into feeling like you’re in the right. We can certainly agree it’s a ridiculous practice no matter who’s doing it.
It seems you’re letting your mind be tainted with party lines, which is what continues to drive a spike between this country, keeping us more divided than ever, and hindering progress. Our future depends on people checking facts and weighing information before forming an opinion, not just blindly following their gut on important issues. Please, please, be one to seriously investigate both sides of every issue and make the right decision. Have you read the actual text of the act? You’ll find there’s a few great things, a few bad things, and a lot of gray area.
Martin M. McMartin
March 28, 2012 at 12:29 pm
First, I used pro-liberty and anti-liberty because this law is not about health care, it is about liberty. The fact that it may be perceived to contain some good or even great things is far outweighed by the requirment to cede our individual sovereignty to the federal government. This law, as Justice Kennedy (a very “balanced” justice) stated, fundamentally transforms the relationship between the federal government and the citizenry. This is not about protecting patients or making health care more affordable, it is about controlling you and I. Today they are making the case for why the health care market is unique and thereby requires the extreme measure of forcing us to purchase goods or services from a private entity and tomorrow they will make the case on why the next market is unique as well and on and on. Listen to Justice Breyer yesterday when he said that as long as congress creates a federal universal scheme for anything they can force Americans to do whatever they deem necessary and proper to carry out the scheme. If that does not concern you, you should move to Cuba now, the weather is better.
So you see, it has nothing to do with Dem and GOP parties, it is much larger than that.
P.S. I asked over a hundred pro-liberty activists if they had been compensated for showing up to the rally yesterday and they all said they had not. Considering there were 3 to 4 thousand people there, that is a pretty good sample.
March 28, 2012 at 3:09 pm
So ultimately the debate comes down to whether health care is a public service. You seem to think this law opens the flood gates, but I disagree. If the flood gates are open, it’s not because of health care– where were you when the Patriot act was passed? Or for the creation of the homeland security office? Those seem more like communism-leaning actions to me. Any other government service– say, welfare, or police, should be under fire according to this, because everyone is “forced” to pay for it (and we have even less choice there). I believe in privatization where it makes sense, and I believe most in this country do as well, despite what your conservative tendencies are pushing you to state. But I don’t believe that to be the case with health care.
I personally believe that if someone is sick, they should be able to get help, no matter their financial stability. I believe this for two reasons: first, because it’s just the right thing to do, plain and simple.
But second, because I believe it keeps “the system” stable. You’re going to use the healthcare system no matter what (we all die sometime), and I foot the bill if you don’t have insurance (or your provider chooses not to cover you). But I foot a smaller bill with the kind of regulation Obamacare puts in play. Simultaneously, healthcare costs have been skyrocketing, to the point that without insurance, folks can’t afford it. And an innumerable amount of cases show insurance companies rejecting coverage for people with dire illnesses, a very Scrooge-y take (“..if they’re going to die, they should do it!”).
Lots more, but I’m short on time today. Maybe we’ll continue this. Free debate is one of the things that makes this country great.
March 29, 2012 at 11:22 am
Hey John P. I was at the Court on Monday. A member of my (unpaid) group witnessed the pro-Obamacare “protesters” being handed signs and told what their “name” and “story” was for the morning. At 11:00 an organizer told the group they were done and they all dropped their signs in a pile and left.
Not one person who was against the unconstitutional health care law was paid to be there. Who would pay them? It was a bunch of individuals and small groups/ministries who were not there as a united group. On Tuesday the Prolife youth showed up to counter NARAL and the Planned Parenthood employees who were bussed there on company time (its part of their job descriptions). Do you think the 350+ MILLION dollars of our taxpayer monies we give Planned Parenthood yearly paid for that protest. I do.
March 29, 2012 at 2:18 pm
Hi Lizzie! Is there any chance you got video of that? We would love to feature it on our website! Also, thanks to McMartin for putting this up! It’s been linked to on RedState.