Sunday, March 22, 2015

ObamaCare Turns Five


ObamaCare Turns Five - A Preview
- by Logan Albright

Monday marks the fifth anniversary of the Affordable Care Act - AKA ObamaCare - being signed into law. Since that fateful day, Americans have been faced with fewer health care choices, higher prices, and burdensome mandates that have made an already tangled health care bureaucracy exponentially worse.

To commemorate the half decade of the government’s takeover of health care, FreedomWorks will be releasing The Five Days of ObamaCare, one day for each year of the law’s existence. On each day, we will highlight a different aspect of how the Affordable Care Act has made life worse, and emphasize the need for true patient-centered reform - now, not later. Read more here...

It's Budget Time Again! Here's What to Expect Next Week
- by Josh Withrow

Credit where credit is due - the Republican-controlled House and Senate are going through a full and open budget process, and they're even on schedule to pass a budget resolution before the April 15th legal deadline. In the event that they succeed in passing a unified budget through both chambers, it would be the first time Congress has done so since 2009 (the Ryan/Murray budget deal of 2013 was hardly a product of regular order). Here's what to expect over the next week.

Next week, the House will vote on a number of alternate proposals that would fully replace the current House proposal if passed. These will likely include the Republican Study Committee's somewhat more ambitious conservative budget, the Progressive Caucus budget, and the president's proposal as well. Read more here...

March Freedom Artist: Richard Wobbe's Stained Glass
- by Frances Byrd

Richard Wobbe is one of our newer artists at Liberatchik, but he is quickly making up for lost time. He wanted to describe how he came to our group in his own words:

Being a person who has always marched to my own drums, made choices on who and what I chose to be around, I found a family at FreedomWorks. There, I have been a long time member and have met great people like Matt Kibbe, Adam Brandon and his crew. One day while reading the FreedomWorks newsletter, I was thrilled to find they had a supporting group of artists. The group's name is Liberatchik. As it turns out, Liberatchik is a group of libertarian and conservative artists with the same ideals and goals as mine. I contacted Frances Byrd, their highly energetic National Director, and she welcomed me into the group. Being a self-taught artist, I have never been associated with any artists’ group. Prior to finding a second home with all of the artists and good people associated with Liberatchik, I never thought the two words "conservative" and "artist" could be used together! See more here...



Justice for All: FreedomWorks' 5 Principles for a Better Justice System
- by Jason Pye

The American justice system is collapsing under its own weight. Big government policies passed by Congress have led to a justice system that traps nonviolent offenders in an endless cycle. This deprives them of economic opportunities and costs taxpayers billions of dollars each year. The Internal Revenue Service and law enforcement agencies at all levels of government have run roughshod over private property rights and due process through abuse of civil asset forfeiture. Read more here...

Wait, the Government Can Take YOUR Property Without Convicting You of a Crime?
- by Daisy Belden

Civil asset forfeiture laws allow the government to seize private property, even when citizens’ haven't been charged with a crime. These laws are a glaring violation of our 5th Amendment right to property and due process. In these cases, law enforcement must only provide probable cause in order to seize property, which, in practice, includes even the most dubious pieces of evidence.

In a study by the Cato Institute, it was found that in 80% of asset forfeiture cases, the person whose property was seized by the government was never charged with a crime. These laws turn the police into revenue collectors, instead of leaving them to deal with hardened, dangerous criminals. Not only that, but the level of bureaucracy involved in getting back your own property, taken more often than not when you haven't even committed a crime, is simply un-American. Read more here...

FreedomWorks at the PA YAL Conference
- by Andrew Maul

On March 14th, FreedomWorks partnered with Young Americans for Liberty for the Pennsylvania YAL Conference at Pittsburgh's Duquesne University. The conference offered almost 100 young Americans a one-day training and networking event designed to build stronger state cooperation, improve activists' effectiveness, and inspire attendees to do even more to advance the cause of liberty. I spoke on behalf of FreedomWorks for lower taxes, less government, and more freedom. Other FreedomWorks volunteers spoke with conference participants and provided them with literature, t-shirts, and engaged with them on important issues of the day. See more here...


Billions to Insurance Companies? Without Legal Consent?
- by Ted Abram

Why the U.S. Treasury Department paid nearly $3 billion to our major, health insurance companies? Ways and Means Chairman, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), wants to know. Sadly, our Treasury officials are stonewalling their responses by referring Rep. Ryan to our Department of Justice, which claims our ObamaCare law authorized the payments. In a brief to related to a lawsuit brought by the Speaker of the House, the DOJ wrote:

“The cost sharing reduction payments are being made as part of a mandatory payment program that Congress has fully appropriated.” Read more here...

Obama's Private Army: Militarizing the Federal Agencies
- by Michael Greibrok

Currently there are 73 federal agencies that have full-time armed officers with arresting authority. According to a 2008 report by the Department of Justice, there were 120,000 full-time law enforcement officers working for federal agencies and 24 different federal agencies employed at least 250 full-time officers. Federal agencies with at least 250 full-time officers included the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Mint, U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Veterans Health Administration. Read more here...

Senator Rand Paul on Justice Reform
- by Michael Greibrok

Last Friday Senator Rand Paul spoke at Bowie State University about the need to reform our justice system. He spoke of the need to reform a system where 2 million American children have fathers in prison, leading to a breakdown of the American family. He spoke of the need to reform a system that too often prevents individuals from gaining employment after their release from prison and instead turns them over to the welfare state. Most importantly, he spoke of real proposals to implement the necessary changes, not vague hopes or dreams. Read more here...


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