Obama's stated logic behind compelling all Americans to buy health insurance was that the system wouldn't work, unless everyone was compelled to be part of it. Conformity is of course is a major requirement for big government solutions, they don't work unless everyone is forced to take part in them. And they don't work unless everyone lives mostly the same. Without individual choices that might take them off the graph. (They still don't work even then, but the numbers look better up front.) And this is how big government solutions lead to the pursuit of a "More Manageable People".
Or at least that's the way it used to be. Until with the best of intentions, we began replacing a government of the people, with a government that saw the people as ants who needed to be brought into line. The late 19th and 20th century saw the rise of a new idea of American government, no longer representative, but transformative. Government no longer existed to listen to the people, but to take them by the hand and reform them. Teach them to wash behind the ears, save money or spend it (as the situation called for), drink less and be obedient. All in order to make their lives better and teach them to be a better people.
Soon everything from stopping alcoholism to disease prevention to ending poverty and fighting racism became the purview of government. And the results were not only disastrous over and over again, but also grimly totalitarian. We sterilized people we considered inferior in order to fight poverty. A view upheld, promoted and enforced by luminaries such as Oliver Wendell Holmes and Margaret Sanger. We created a national crime syndicate in order to fight alcoholism. We caused massive social disruption, first through aggressive segregation efforts and then aggressive desegregation efforts, both led by Democrats. We bankrupted the economy to save the economy. We created an entire culture of poverty in order to fight poverty.
The progressive idea of government was broken. Badly broken. And in the process Americans had traded their birthright of freedom, for the promise of government solutions that made the social problems they were trying to solve that much worse. But rather than admit defeat and pull back, the big government reformers decided that there was nothing wrong with their ideas-- there was something wrong with the American people.
Their grand failures inspired them not to an attitude of humility, but hostility. Their analysis of their own failures blamed not so much their policy, as the people. The American people were willful. They behaved and thought in ways the social scientists did not expect. They did not do what was "good for them". They needed nannies and regimentation. They had to be made more manageable and brought into line.
But since "manageable" is not a terribly democratic or appealing world, "equality" was instead repurposed to mean the same thing. Where equality had once meant equal right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, it instead became the euphemism for creating an average society, one in which people would be forced to live like everyone else, to think like everyone else, to have the same jobs, the same wages and the same lives. Only then would the big government plans finally work, because the people they were meant to work on would be interchangeable, cogs in a machine, even numbers without fractions that add up very nicely.
Where the Old America had been based around the revolutionary notion that people should define their own lives by their own decisions, the New America had reverted to the medieval notion that everything would run best if people lived the way they were supposed to, did what they were told, and shut up when their betters (with the appropriate degrees and government positions) were talking. The Town Halls and the Tea Party movement represented an explosive clash between the Old America, that actually took the Constitution seriously, and the New America, that viewed it as a framework for imposing their solutions on an ignorant public.
Where the Old American was a random variable, the New American had to be a known and fixed quantity. After all how do you plan big government solutions that affect hundreds of millions of people, unless you reduce those people to a handful of numbers. You cannot cover the health care of 400 million different and unique people. Only individual providers and doctors can do that. What you can do is cover the health care of what you define as a typical American family and a typical American single individual, and then force everyone into that category. Compulsory insurance, Death panels, heavy taxes on large coverage-- and all the assorted totalitarian ugliness of ObamaCare is the logical outcome of that philosophy. Everyone must fall into the same category, or the system can't work. And if you don't conform, you will be made to conform. Good bye Constitution. Hello Flow Chart.
Wealth Redistribution eliminates classes and pushes everyone further into the average column. By eliminating classes, it also eliminates social mobility, which creates a more controllable static society in which everyone is just getting by, except the people with government connections or engaged in illegal activity (the two are often interchangeable in a tightly regulated system). Forget about the urchin becoming a Carnegie. That's off the graph. Forget about the middle class too. Making everyone average means pushing everyone down, not up-- because it requires less resources to deprive people of wealth, than to give them wealth, and it helps pay for the redistribution process too.
Capitalism smashed feudalism once, by shaking up the nobility and creating power based on economic success, rather than inherited titles or brutality. Now feudalism is back, except it's being called socialism, but the endgame is the same. A static society with a massive lower class tethered to specific highly regulated occupations, and a tiny upper class that has been put in charge of running their lives. The new "Protectors of the People" may be armed with PhD's, rather than banners and cavalry, but the end result is the same.
Lenin promised the peasants, land. Under Communism, not only did the peasants lose what little land they had, they also lost their livestock and even the right to leave the farm without permission. Now consider how many rights American farmers have lost since the 19th century. Consider how many rights Americans have lost, period. How many forms do you have to fill out to do even the simplest things. How much permission do you need from the authorities to do what you want. How well do you even know the laws you're governed by. All for your own good. To be a more manageable people.
The reformers could never accept the reality of human nature. That people would drink more than is good for them. That people will eat more than is good for them. That some will earn more and some will earn less. That some will be bigoted and others ignorant. That people will make good choices and bad choices. But rather than understanding that American government was created not to impose solutions, but to protect that ability to choose-- the reformers instead decided that government could be a moral force by taking away those choices, and allowing only those choices they approved of.
To create a more Manageable People is the objective of all tyrannies. But in 1776, Americans demonstrated how unmanageable a people they were. The Tea Party movement is demonstrating that again today. And those who would manage Americans into a state of absolute conformity should remember that as well.