The 60-40 cloture Senate vote to shut off debate on Obamacare came shortly after 1 a.m. in blizzard-shocked Washington, D.C.
Oddly, some of the liberals pushing this vote would define Guantanamo prisoners deprived of sleep and kept up until 1 a.m. to be victims whose confessions should be accepted only as evidence that they have been tortured.
But when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid forces geriatric U.S. senators to prop their eyes open with toothpicks for this dead-of-night vote at an hour when sleepy people cause accidents such as Bhopal and Three Mile Island, the liberal media applauds this as wise policymaking.
Reid's strange rush to ram Obamacare through the Senate by Christmas Eve should strike most grown-ups as imprudent at best, insane at worst.
As moderate Maine Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe said Sunday on ABC's "This Week," lawmakers were given no chance to amend this bill — and almost no time to read 400 new pages Reid added at the last moment — although benefits under Obamacare will not commence until 2014.
This new version of Obamacare, adds a new entitlement for long-term care and will allocate $33 trillion, Snowe said. But it is being fast-tracked through the Senate as if it were needed urgently but of so little importance that it can be forced through without deliberation or full debate.
As cynical politics, Reid's ram-through makes perfect sense. The more that Americans learn what's in Obamacare, the more they reject it. To prevent members from traveling home and experiencing firsthand the boiling public anger there, Reid is keeping Senators locked up.
Few pieces of legislation have as many devils in their details as this now-2,700 page monstrosity.
But let's focus on one example of Obamacare's future victims so that men, women and children can grasp what it means for them:
1. Obamacare could kill Santa Claus.
2. Pundits have long noted that Santa is among the most politically incorrect role models in our culture. He wears fur and exploits reindeer and elves. He threatens our global climate by operating a toy factory at the pristine but environmentally fragile North Pole.
3. Santa may be associated with the religious right and is judgmental — rewarding children not equally or by favoring minorities, but based on his subjective assessment of who has been “naughty” or “nice.”
Would Santa be provided medical treatment under Obamacare? Maybe not, for at least three reasons:
Reason One: Santa Claus is old, more than 1,000 by some accounts. With Obamacrats rationing costly medical treatments and slashing Medicare by nearly $500 billion, it's clear that Santa never would be allowed a liver, kidney, or other organ transplant at his age.
But Santa probably would be provided with end-of-life counseling and perhaps even suicide pills to expedite his departure.
The revised Reid bill, which supposedly incorporates language restricting abortions, continues to require that everyone with health insurance pay monthly into a fund for those who abort their unborn babies.
Two: Santa Claus is fat. Other socialist healthcare systems have denied people surgery based on their being overweight, claiming that to treat them would be a waste of taxpayer money.
In one Scandanavian socialist welfare state, mothers have had their children taken away solely because a severely obese woman is perceived as an unfit mother.
Obesity remains a scientific mystery in some ways. A high percentage of obese people are infected with one particular virus, which may influence how fat is stored in the body. In others, genetic predispositions may push some towards obesity much as others inherit a predisposition to become alcoholics.
To deny obese people such as Santa medical care because of being overweight is therefore more than a little like refusing to provide medical care to someone based on his or her skin color, another inherited trait, or their victimization by a weight-promoting virus.
Is it fair to cut off medical care for people because of their genes, or because they suffer a life-shortening, fat-producing infectious disease?
Three: Santa Claus smokes, as we hear in one Christmas poem, with pipe smoke encircling his head like a wreath.
But what if this causes Santa to need a lung transplant? Would Obamacare pay for it?
In Great Britain's socialist National Health Service, patients have been denied certain care options such as lung transplants because they were chronic smokers.
Under Obamacare, smokers likewise could be refused certain treatments.
Nicotine from tobacco is, by some assessments, at least three times more “addictive” than heroin. (Or to be scientifically precise, nicotine is not addictive but is “severely habituating,” because smokers do not need an ever-increasing dose to get their fix; those tobacco company executives who told a congressional committee years ago that their products are not “addictive” were right.)
The government already has used heavy taxes to provide cash for medical care, taxes justified by claiming that this penalty reduces smoking, especially among young people.
But if high cost greatly reduced smoking, it also would greatly reduce government tobacco tax revenue that power-addicted politicians now from anti-smoking programs to the general fund for spending.
These politicians are preying on some of the weakest among us — the poor and lower middle-class people who are hooked on nicotine.
Honest lawmakers, would outlaw tobacco if they believed their own propaganda about its health dangers. Instead they fatten on the profits, the plump tax revenues.
But such tobacco tax revenues, now largely diverted to the general fund, would have to be spent on smoking-related healthcare unless rationing was imposed. (The same may become true with health taxes imposed on fat-stimulating foods such as soda pop.) Smokers such as Santa will be denied health options.
Yes, Virginia, Obamacare could kill Santa Claus.
And this is particularly ironic because today's godless liberals nowadays mostly reject and ridicule God — but still have total belief in Santa Claus — with the idea that some mysterious being can supply infinite goodies to us at no cost.
Lowell Ponte is co-host of the radio show “Night-Watch,” heard live nationwide at 10 p.m. Eastern time Monday through Friday on gcnlive.com.
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