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Obamacare: It's Alive

Today in health care reform.

10:01 PM, Mar 21, 2010 • By MATTHEW CONTINETTI
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Sometime in the next hour, the House of Representatives of the United States of America will pass into law a health care reform that the people they represent oppose. In so doing, they will complete the decades-long project of American liberals to create an American welfare state along the lines you find in postwar Western Europe. Next comes immigration, cap-and-trade, a universal entitlement to higher education, and card-check legislation empowering unions. And after that come the tax hikes -- not just on the rich, but on everyone -- that will be required to pay for this drastic expansion of government. Never in modern congressional memory has so much been affected for so many by so few.

Do not believe anyone who tells you they understand the path American politics will take after this vote. It is truly unique. And yet a few things are clear. One, the idea of the "pro-life" Democrat should be tossed into the dust-heap along with such outmoded concepts as cold-fusion. Two, Obama will achieve a short-term bump in his political capital, and likely his poll ratings, because he will have achieved something that every Democratic president since Harry Truman has been unable to accomplish. And three, Obamacare is a testable proposition. The proponents of this legislation have made distinct claims regarding its costs and consequences that should not be forgotten -- especially when America encounters its first debt crisis some years from now.

Let's give the last word to Rep. Paul Ryan:

Liberals are right. America will never be the same.

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