Calvinball Court
Monday June 30th 2014, 10:18 pm
Filed under: Politics

Calvinball is from Calvin and Hobbes, where the one who holds the ball makes up the rules and changes them constantly to keep their personal advantage going.

I’m going to go political today, sorry, and I know not all will agree with me and if you don’t, thank you for putting up with me anyway.

Okay. That Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision? Ruth Bader Ginsberg had some very relevant points to make on the dissenting side.

It looks to me like they established religion of one group of people over another. Hobby Lobby was not a household; they are a large for-profit corporation that invested their 401Ks in the companies manufacturing the very products they denied their employees and they sell goods made by cheap labor in a country with forced sterilizations and abortions, so the hypocrisy is strong in this one.

Here’s John Oliver the day before the case came down, anticipating how it was going to go. He gives credit to Hobby Lobby’s good deeds where they have rightfully earned it and then, in the stand-up comedian style he’s so good at, he tells it to them straight on the rest.

The question I have is, do job applicants now have a right to ask a prospective employer what their religion is? Because it is suddenly very relevant, while the employer sure can’t legally ask the applicant theirs.

Ginsberg brings up Jehovah’s Witnesses and blood transfusions, but they reject more than blood.

On the practical side, if you allow an employer to opt out of providing medical coverage for various cherry-picked items because of the employer’s religion, you have to deal with the outcome that will inevitably happen that someone someday will be in the hospital on TPN, IV feeding for the very ill like I went through five years ago with the infusion alone costing $2000 per day hospital care aside–and as this case stands, their employer in the name of their religion can stick their supposedly insured employee with that whole bill. Because, you know, the employee’s going to hell for messing with their veins but the employer doesn’t want to be dragged down there with them.

Even though the employee paid their premiums. Which were part of their compensation package. And even though this was not an individual denying them, it’s a corporation, ie a fictitious legal entity created specifically to put a buffer between an individual and the company they own.

Apply this scenario to any chemo infusion drug, too, and you see how widespread a problem we suddenly have here just to start.

Corporations are not real people.  This has not been a controversial statement for 200 years and it shouldn’t be now.

Scalia on his more outrageous cases like this claims that the ruling applies only to this one thing right here, but that is never true at the lower court level. Precedent sets precedents and other courts honor and uphold the Supreme Court, apparently more than Scalia does.

That IV case or something very like it is going to happen. They have set themselves up to be overturned.

We can only pray we have a different membership on the Court by then, and soon.

12 Comments so far
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Amen! And will it stop at employers? If employers can cherry pick, can Medicare? My chemo runs about $20K q 3 weeks; a PET scan runs $10K. Even though chemo isn’t working as well any more, my quality of life is still acceptable.

Comment by carol telsey 07.01.14 @ 6:43 am

Whenever a topic like this comes up, I have to wonder if the insurance covers Viagra.

Comment by Sherry in Idaho 07.01.14 @ 6:48 am

Amen…I’m just too fit-to-be-tied for words…you said it well.

Comment by Jayleen Hatmaker 07.01.14 @ 8:51 am

@Sherry: I have read that it does.

Comment by AlisonH 07.01.14 @ 9:04 am

Just so angry right now. This does NOT feel as if it was a well thought out decision. The long term implications on many fronts is frightening!

This is another example of treating women as second class. All of our bodies belong to them. Some of the articles say “you have the option to go to Planned Parenthood”. WRONG! The far right is closing Planned Parenthood offices as fast as possible. The wide ranging implications of this decision are frightening!

Comment by Mary 07.01.14 @ 12:09 pm

I agree will the comments you have made and the above, especially #2 viagra. I quit shopping Hobby Lobby a few years ago for their employee/employer situation and will not be back even though at one time I used to haunt the store for supplies, regularly. Time to ‘vote with our feet and dollars’ as my mother would say. The Supreme Court has just messed up big time.

Comment by Helen 07.02.14 @ 7:24 am

Thank you, Alison, for excellent commentary, and bonus-points for the Calvinball reference. This is so very scary. There are many women who need hormone/birth-control pills for medical conditions, and this gives them no recourse. Yet, as you noted, viagra isn’t challenged. It’s bad enough that insurance companies can deny medical needs, but now the employer? I have heard people say, “Well, a person doesn’t have to work at Hobby Lobby.” But, maybe one does, for the apparent decent wage, and maybe that is the only job one can find. This is just so wrong. I will never shop there.

Comment by DebbieR 07.02.14 @ 1:50 pm

Is it worth mentioning that 16 of the 20 birth control meds ” required” ARE covered by Hobby Lobby insurance coverage to their employees? Corporations are run by people, and cannot be seen as being completely dis-connected from those people and their rights…probably the lone dissenter here…but courteously, I hope.

Comment by Ruth 07.02.14 @ 7:44 pm

Thanks, Alison. I am with you on this.

That said, I’d rather see insurance decoupled altogether from employment. That all started when wage freezes during WWII led to some clever companies getting around the freezes by offering insurance benefits, thereby distorting the market. How about a sufficient wage that the employees could then afford to buy their insurance on an open market, ideally in groups, but not tied to an employer? Then we’d have more awareness of the cost of insurance, more freedom to change jobs, and the freedom to access the health care that matched our personal values.

Comment by twinsetellen 07.02.14 @ 8:20 pm

I will get too cranky if I start in on it, so I’ll just say: Ruth Bader Ginsberg is my imaginary grandma.

Comment by Lanafactrix 07.02.14 @ 9:42 pm

And one day, one whole day later, the Court itself threw out limits on limits on birth control coverage. So much for the strict interpretations Scalia claimed it would have.

Comment by AlisonH 07.02.14 @ 11:53 pm

Not to mention that the SAME PEOPLE defending Hobby Lobby’s ability to pick and choose based on their religion would have a FIT if a Muslim, Jewish, or Islamic person owned a company and tried to do anything of the kind. We are a nation of hypocrites.

Comment by Toni 07.03.14 @ 8:44 am

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