On Tuesday, less than 24 hours after a federal appeals court announced its 2-1 Halbig v. Burwell ruling, declaring subsidies on federal health insurance exchanges illegal, left-wing journalism was reduced momentarily to a simpering heap of comical hand-wringing.

We say “momentarily” because despair eventually gave way to defiance, with headlines boldly declaring: “Here's why the ruling doesn't matter,” “Here's why the ruling hurts the GOP,” etc.

But before the left managed to find its pluck and pull itself together, the Daily Beast's Michael Tomasky distinguished himself among his peers by grabbing top prize for Most Absurd Thing Said About the Ruling.

Here, enjoy:

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And he wins top place for more than just a silly headline. The entire article reads like a parody:

• “It’s truly extraordinary, the lengths modern conservatism will go to to ensure that more members of what Dickens called ‘the surplus population’ will die.”

• “It’s revolting beyond words. Actually, not really beyond words. I have a few. Orwellian, Malthusian, barbarous, depraved ... I think you get me. But will it work?”

• “If they succeed, their dismantling of the ACA will dwarf everything else that has happened in our era. The GOP will be known for years to come as the party that literally ripped security out of the hands of millions of people who so briefly and tenuously had it. They call themselves the ‘party of life.’ And as with most of what they say, the opposite is the truth.”

Good grief. There’s enough beard-tearing drama packed into those sentences to make even a Dostoevsky character blush.

Anyway, if you're interested in an explanation of the ruling that doesn't come across like it was written by a person hyperventilating into a brown paper bag, I suggest you read Phillip Klein's take on the issue.

But honest to goodness, that Daily Beast article really is a piece of work. It must be strange, going through life constantly in fear of being murdered by Republicans.

Probably explains why the left is so humorless.