Let everyone you care about know about this bamboozle. Lawrence O'Donnell reads the ACTUAL language from the ACTUAL individual mandate section of the tax bill in the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. There is no individual mandate requirement. Once again, politicians do not read the important bills they should know cold.
Why should you listen to Lawrence O'Donnell? Lawrence O'Donnell wrote this kind of language as a Senate staffer.
From Wikipedia: "[F]rom 1993 to 1995, he [O'Donnell] was staff director of the United States Senate Committee on Finance, once again under Senator Moynihan's chairmanship. He thus led the staff of the Senate's tax-writing committee during the consideration of President Bill Clinton's first budget, which Congress enacted in the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993."
EDIT - June 28, 2012
After the Supreme Court decision today, I downloaded and searched the full language of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from www.healthcare.gov/law/full:
By Justice Roberts insisting in his decision today that the mandate was a tax, he confirmed the language that O'Donnell reads (correctly) in this video starting at 2:25 minutes. Let me be clear: by insisting that the mandate is a "TAX," Roberts caused the language below to kick in as the law of the land. The bottom line is that you don't have to buy health insurance. There is no tax you have to pay. There is no penalty. You will not suffer, BY LAW, any action from the IRS.
HERE IT IS:
Locate it on PAGE 151 OF SECTION 1502, or page 170 of the PDF. LOOK IT UP YOURSELF.
(g) ADMINISTRATION AND PROCEDURE.—
(1) IN GENERAL.—The penalty provided by this section
shall be paid upon notice and demand by the Secretary, and
except as provided in paragraph (2), shall be assessed and collected
in the same manner as an assessable penalty under subchapter
B of chapter 68.
(2) SPECIAL RULES.—Notwithstanding any other provision
(A) WAIVER OF CRIMINAL PENALTIES.—In the case of
any failure by a taxpayer to timely pay any penalty imposed
by this section, such taxpayer shall not be subject to
any criminal prosecution or penalty with respect to such
(B) LIMITATIONS ON LIENS AND LEVIES.—The Secretary
(i) file notice of lien with respect to any property
of a taxpayer by reason of any failure to pay the penalty
imposed by this section, or
(ii) levy on any such property with respect to
Ergo, you don't have to buy zip.