Unconstitutional or not, the individual mandate is outrageous and offensive. Not because of asking people to take responsibility and pull their own weight, but because it mandates that everyone buys an over-priced and disgusting product from one or another giant financial corporation.
The Senate version is worse: it levies fines for not having insurance but tax breaks for the cost of insurance, while the House version subsidizes the cost of insurance for people with modest incomes, and imposes a tax penalty for no insurance.
The Senate version includes no restraint on their price-fixing and market-monopolization practices, and no public insurance option to restrain prices through competition. But either version would force some 20 or 30 million new customers into the maws of the giant insurance-company vacuum-cleaner, which sucks up and pockets or wastes our hard earned money, and employs armies of clerks and lawyers to haggle over what care we will be allowed in return.
In return we get some rules limiting their discriminatory practices, but they're still allowed to charge up to twice as much for older patients and four times as much for "pre-existing conditions". So older, sicker citizens will be priced out of the market, and will be fined (and maybe prosecuted) for it!
This is reform? Constitutional or not, it is a scandal and must be stopped.
Kerry, Coakley and McGovern, are you listening? This rising tide of protest is not a Republican or a Democratic thing - it's bigger than that. Your system is cracking at the base. Who will speak for us on the inside?