Confused by all the talk around Halbig v. Burwell? Rumors abound that this case represents the next big legal challenge to Obamacare, but how do we know it's not just hype surrounding a technicality, as the law's supporters suggest? In Halbig, an IRS interpretation of Obamacare – dubious, but crucial to the law's implementation – was rejected by the courts as an unlawful use of administrative authority. The underlying concern is the ongoing revival of extralegal executive powers – akin to the "Royal Prerogative" of yore – under the banner of "Administrative Law." If the Halbig decision stands, it would represent at least a small win against the growth of executive power. But health care isn't the only area where increasingly absolute executive authority is eroding the checks and balances of our constitutional government. Columbia Law Professor Philip Hamburger will join the show to clear up the confusion, and to reveal the long historical struggle to constrain extralegal power as told in his fascinating new book, Is Administrative Law Unlawful?
Though some use it disparagingly, the label of “Bleeding Heart” is worn by others as a badge of honor. This apparent contradiction only starts to make sense when you contrast the frequently damaging results of government policy motivated by the undeniably noble sentiment behind caring for the poor. Matt Zwolinski, Professor of Philosophy at University of San Diego, is out to reframe the debate through what he calls Bleeding Heart Libertarianism. On this show, you’ll find out what this means and how it applies to recurring policy debates about welfare and more. In a nutshell, Zwolinski and his co-bloggers at BleedingHeartLibertarians.com seek to validate the concepts of social justice and responsibility to the poor within the framework of free-market advocacy. Can the union of these ideas translate into a viable political agenda? Later, Bob looks at President Obama’s expansion of executive power, with the release of five Taliban prisoners in exchange for U.S. solider Bowe Bergdahl. Bob also examines a new EPA rule to curb carbon dioxide emissions across the 50 states, and he looks at the effects it is likely to have on the cost of energy. Just who would these new regulations burden the most? You guessed it – the poor! Tune in to sharpen your thinking on how government can best help (or at least do the least harm) to the worst off among us.