Over the weekend Jim Robbins at Rare catalogued some very important ObamaCare information:
“Would you trust thousands of low-level Federal bureaucrats and contractors with one-touch access to your private financial and medical information? Under Obamacare you won’t have any choice. As the Obamacare train-wreck begins to gather steam, there is increasing concern in Congress over something called the Federal Data Services Hub. The Data Hub is a comprehensive database of personal information being established by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to implement the federally facilitated health insurance exchanges. The purpose of the Data Hub, according to a June 2013 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, is to provide ‘electronic, near real-time access to federal data’ and ‘access to state and third party data sources needed to verify consumer-eligibility information.’”
But we basically knew this was in it — even if we didn’t read the bill prior to passage. How else can the federal government takeover one sixth of our $14 trillion economy — a sector as information-intensive as health care — but with a huge database? How else will the government’s Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) decide who gets to live and who gets, you know, a pain pill?
Obamacare is one of myriad big brother laws and un-passed regulations to be imposed.
Dodd-Frank and others attempt to control the financial sector. Net Neutrality and other doctrines attempt to control the Internet sector. Cap and trade, the energy sector, and the DREAM Act to waive immigration laws disliked by Leftists. Card check to force an unwilling workplace to unionize.
And on, and on, and on…
And of several big-data revelations to come to light in recent months, Obamacare’s uber-database is possibly the biggest. To recap:
The government spies on reporters. And their parents.
The government collects phone call data on hundreds of millions of Americans. It allows thousands of National Security Administration (NSA) analysts to listen to them at their individual discretion. These same analysts can also read our emails, texts and Instant Messages, and watch our video chats. The government is working with many of the largest Internet companies to take possession of much of the information they have on us.
The government uses our data to sic the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on opponents, inhibits select political organizations from forming or gaining approval, then releases damaging information on and audits anyone not with the big government program.
The government uses our data to sic the Departments of Labor, Agriculture and Health and Human Services, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and multitudinous other agencies, on opponents.
Will Obamacare use our data in a similar fashion?
And on, and on, and on….
Despite the aforementioned efforts, the Internet is still the last great frontier. A free speech/free market Xanadu that rose in importance too rapidly for the government to keep up.
So they are now trying to play catch-up, with Net Neutrality, cell phone price controls, and Cybersecurity Executive Orders. And that isn’t nearly enough for our overlords. Waiting in the wings for over two years is a proposed complete Internet takeover called Title II Reclassification. By which the government takes near total regulatory control — and throws in the power to tax the Web as well.
As bad as are the economic implications of all this, the First Amendment ones are even worse. Our political speech — print, audio and video — is rapidly and with ever greater exclusivity moving to the Internet. So the government is looking to preemptively commandeer control.
It’s a brave new world. Dozens of sweeping new laws and regulations — by which the government lords over ever more of our lives combined with sweeping programs that collect as much of our information as possible.
Our data — and increasingly our lives — have become the Leviathan’s plaything. Only it’s deadly serious. They know it — and more of us need to get to know it too.