Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts,
whose surprise vote was decisive
in health care decision.
The other night my wife and I were watching the NBC Nightly News, which is broadcast here on NBC's European cable station.

There was an item about firefighters in Colorado not having health care. It was the typical network news lechh, with a plastic reporter not so much reporting as trying to grab us by the heartstrings. That sort of thing just gets my goat and I blurted out, "Oh gimme a break."

My wife started asking me questions about the the Colorado firefighters thinking I knew something about those who are fighting fires in Colorado and their health care issues. I don't. It was merely the reporter's tone that set me off, although I told my wife I doubted that the firefighters' tale was as straight-forward as NBC's talking emoticon made it seem.

I said that I thought this is NBC's way of providing more back-up for the new Health Care law in America. We got talking about the new law. I explained that I didn't understand all of it and went through a few of the provisions as I understood them.

I told her that people who were already sick or injured or whatever could not be denied health insurance. She didn't have much a problem with that one. I told her the government claims it will help control the costs of health care and health insurance, but "who knows? We have a lot of that here and costs seem to be exploding."

I mentioned that under the new law children could remain on their parents' policy til they were 26. That didn't phase her, although I find it odd that someone who's 25 can be considered a child.

Not a biggie, however.
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I then mentioned the individual mandate and my wife was stunned.

"You mean, even people who don't want health insurance are going to be forced to buy it?"
"Really? Surely that would be ruled out in court."
"No, the Supreme Court just ruled it was constitutional. It's the law of the land."
"I'm shocked by that. I didn't think Americans would stand for anything like that. They always give the impression of not liking it when the government intrudes in their lives. I'm really surprised that Americans are willing to put up with that."

My wife was sure Americans had more respect for individual liberty than that. "If people can be compelled to buy health insurance what can they not be compelled to do?" Indeed. Happy 4th of July.