WSJ's Henninger: 'Big Government Finally Imploded' July 3

Thursday, 11 Jul 2013 01:26 PM

By Dan Weil

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The Obama administration's postponement of the Affordable Care Act's employer mandate signals the collapse of government overreach upon itself, claims Wall Street Journal columnist Daniel Henninger.

"Mark July 3, 2013, as the day Big Government finally imploded," he writes. That was the day the administration announced that the mandate would be delayed by a year.

The rule requires that businesses with more than 50 employees offer them health insurance or pay a fine. The Obamacare law stipulated that the mandate would be implemented Jan. 1, 2014. The administration extended that deadline by a year.

"The one-year rollover of Obamacare because of its 'complexity' suggests it's time to call in the physicists, the people who study black holes and death stars," Henninger says. "That's what the federal government looks like after expanding ever outward for the past 224 years."

Even liberals must realize the flaws of Obamacare now, he says. "While they troweled brick after brick into a 2,000-page law, the rest of the world was reshaping itself into smaller, more nimble units whose defining metaphor is the 140-character Twitter message."

President Barack Obama this week has again called for "smarter" government. "It requires whatever lies on the far side of chutzpah to say this after passing a 1930s-style law that is both incomprehensible and simply won't work," Henninger says.

But it's not just Obamacare, he says. "Important parts of the federal government are breaking down almost simultaneously."

There's the National Security Agency surveillance program scandal. Some conservatives see the program as unwarranted government intrusion. But, "what's more concretely frightening is that a dweeb like Edward Snowden could download the content of the NSA's computers onto a thumb drive and walk out of the world's 'most secretive' agency," Henninger writes.

"Here's the short answer: The NSA has 40,000 employees. (Some say it's as high as 55,000, but it's a secret.)"

Then there's the Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservatives groups. "The agency managers' defense was that the IRS is too big for anyone to know what its agents are doing. Thus both the NSA and IRS are too big to avoid endangering the public," Henninger says.

The government has turned into a disaster, he says. "Whether Obamacare or the border fence [which Henninger also opposes], Washington is winding down into a black hole of its own making. The debate's over. Liberalism will be swept into this vortex, too."

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