Dan Popp
Fining the righteous
By Dan Popp
October 11, 2013

It is also not good to fine the righteous, Nor to strike the noble for their uprightness. (Proverbs 17:26, NAS95)

When a conservative complains that government force should have no part in health care, he may get the reply, "Well, you don't have to join the exchanges. You can always pay the fine." I even heard this excuse from a government official. It's exactly parallel to the statements, "Rape all the women you want to; you can just go to jail" and, "We have no opinion on murder one way or the other. Go ahead; you can always be executed."

The point of the objection is, Why should I be punished for taking care of my own health care expenses? Why are you fining the righteous?

We use fines for several reasons: To raise money, to reimburse a group of people for costs imposed on them, and to punish bad behavior for the purpose of reducing that behavior.

Which of these reasons could we apply to Obamacare? Do ACA fines raise money to fund the government? If they do, they're way too small to feed DC's voracious appetite. Do they offset costs that you, the scofflaw, are imposing on the group? No, just the opposite; you taking care of your own family should reduce costs to the government. Of course the reason for the fine is to modify your behavior.

Now, unlike "providing access to health care for all Americans," behavior modification is actually something the government is supposed to do, and can do. But it should be modifying the behavior of the wicked.
    ... law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching.... (1 Timothy 1:9b-10)
The sword of the law is used unjustly if it's used to harm the harmless. But more than that, in this fallen world the coercive power of government should be used with reverence for the just Judge who will one day set all wrongs to right. If, when you get political power over someone, you use that power to bend him toward the wrong instead of the right; or if you use it arbitrarily, "because you can," then you're abusing that power. You're striking the noble for his integrity. You have a grip on the handle, when you should be feeling the blade.

The law was made for the lawless.

For Obamacare to be a just law, we'd have to believe that an individual is worthy of punishment because he has chosen something other than what the powerful would like him to choose. He has a "choice," but one of those choices comes with a free punch to the face. "You don't have to do our bidding," explain our benevolent masters, "you can always take the whipping."

But it's worse than that.

As if fining individuals for good choices weren't bad enough, the antichrist theocrats behind Obamacare want to fine charitable hospitals for healing the poor. And, in their bumbling bureaucratic effort to drive all the sheeple into their tiny pen, the tyrants may end up driving those hospitals out of business. Yes, the people who created a non-functional 600-million-dollar website in the name of health care – wielding a scheme modeled on the medical plan of Otto Von Bismarck – know better and care more than the people who run non-profit hospitals.

Those evil charity hospitals just have to go.

With almost unbelievable irony, President Obama said recently, "We can't make extortion routine as part of our democracy." You can look it up. The former professor of Constitutional Law thinks this is a democracy, and that's not even the kicker: He's not aware that "routine extortion" is an operational description of the law called by his name.

extortion: (noun) The crime of obtaining money or some other thing of value by the abuse of one's office or authority. Oppressive or illegal exaction, as of excessive price or interest. The act of securing money, favours, etc. by intimidation or violence; blackmail.

No, you don't have to do what the compassionate people want – you really don't. Just do what they say, or they'll shoot. Because they love you.

You can always pay the fine.

It is also not good to fine the righteous, Nor to strike the noble for their uprightness.

© Dan Popp


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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