Skip to comments.Not So Good News . . .
Posted on 06/29/2012 7:31:50 AM PDT by madprof98
Ive read all the arguments, some ingenious, for why the Roberts majority opinion is actually good in the long run. I dont buy that at all, and worry that rationalizing defeats is no way to learn from them. From now on, the precedent has been established that U.S. citizens can be forced to buy a product that government deems necessary period. Who cares what a particular president on occasion deems to call it tax, mandate, whatever at any given expedient time, or what a justice does to finesse that definition to protect implementation of the law?
The same is true with the Arizona decision. I dont see how that decision is such great news either: We now live in a country where a state that tries to follow and enforce federal law is seen as a usurping power, while those government entities, such as the sanctuary cities, which deliberately seek to undermine federal immigration law are, for all practical purposes, exempt. Add that Arizona is now supposedly acting unconstitutionally in trying to close its borders, and the president is apparently acting constitutionally as he sidesteps Congress and implements de facto amnesty by fiat, doing far more damage to the notion of federal law than any conceivable action by Arizona. That is surreal.
As for the culture of the Court, we must accept that when four liberal judges vote in typically liberal fashion they are open-minded, and when conservative judges do the same they are partisan and small-minded, putting enormous pressure, apparently, on the latter to now and then vote in liberal fashion, and none at all on the former to do anything but remain orthodox. There is no conservative majority, but rather a 4/3/2 court, with absolutely predictably liberal justices and those inclined often to join them becoming a reliable majority.
As for the Holder contempt charge, nothing much will come of it. Holder will not release the required documents any time soon; the matter will be manufactured into an illiberal assault on an African-American attorney general who has already shamelessly used the race card in his defense; and there will be, as planned, stalling and stasis until after the election and little knowledge about or justice given to a slain American officer.
Meanwhile, after a disastrous May and June, Obama is edging up again in the polls. For all the reports of his fundraising problems or his existential election crises, he seems to have many millions in key swing states to run class-warfare hits against Romney. The serial Swiss bank accounts and shipping jobs overseas dont seem to be countered, and so are having some effect. If Obama is where he is after a disastrous 60 days, where will he be after a so-so next two months? Conservatives should not listen to themselves and their ingenious rationalization about how things are really swinging their way, and instead accept that the presidency, the courts, and much of Congress are doing all they can, as quickly as they can, with enormous powers at their disposal, to change the fundamental nature of the United States and so far are mostly winning. All of the above should mobilize conservatives in 2012 as never before and open their eyes to the resources and zealotry pledged against them: November is really a sort of last-ditch effort in a way prior elections were not.
Health insurance isn’t just a product. It’s a contract. What happened to the contracts clause?
You don’t have to enter into a contract, you just pay a tax if you don’t. I think the 14th amendment and the equal protection clause is a better argument.
VDH is absolutely correct - and has a great historical perspective. There was nothing good about yesterday’s ruling.
I was thinking the same thing yesterday as I read all the comments about the silver linings. VA AG’s piece in National Review today is the worst of all.
Roberts’ credibility as a Constitutional Scholar is now on par with that of 0bama.
VDH nails it again. On point and brilliant.
VDH delivered yet again. There is no silver lining.
Not only is this an AWFUL (as in ‘How in the world can Roberts did that’ AWFULNESS) decision on the largest government intrusion into private citizens’ life and rights. The precedence it set will reverberate for a long, long, very long time.
Not only our elected representatives do not listen to us, the people, who should be their boss and not the other way around.
Now we’ve seen the slippery road of ‘meaning and definition’ being twisted to an unrecognizable degree by Roberts’ reasoning. Think on it, law gets passed by our betters, then gets new definition by the court.
What Roberts did is unforgivable, that The Constitution is no longer the last defense against a tyrannical goverment.
VDH just stated (much more elegantly) exactly what I have been saying — point-by-point.
"we're subjects of an Imperial bureaucracy."
As soon as you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipes and all kinds of music, you must fall down and worship the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. Daniel 3:5
Some things never change, no matter how much we hope they would.
First good piece I’ve read today. THanks for telling it straight, Victor.
My take on the whole thing is in some short platitudes:
Things have to get worse before they get better.
You have to break a few eggs to make an omelette.
The phoenix will rise from the ashes, but first you need ashes.
Fact is, we are very much going the way of ancient Rome. People have made that comparison for most of my life (I’m 58), but they were perceived as clutching at straws. But no more. The parallels are obvious and hard to ignore. But I am familiar with Bible prophesy. It clearly states that before the return of Christ it will be worse in the world than any time in history.
Everybody needs to man up and realize that there have been few times in history where there was not great suffering. We’ve had a mindbogglingly long run, but the chickens are coming home to roost.
Do you want to see your future, in a fashion? Watch The Pianist. Seriously. The reasons and victims may be different, but it is the world we are living. It is the world many humans are living right now and have been living the whole time we’ve been enjoying our relatively utopian existence.
Frankly, the populations of modern western countries remind me of the “above surface” humans in the distant future in the first version of the movie, “The Time Machine”. Children in so many bad ways.
This is just the next step in a clear march we have been on for a hundred years, albeit one of the larger steps. Mankind is simply doing what he always does: self destruct.
This may really help the R’s this november, but that is really irrelevant too since they have all but removed the mask, exposing them as just the other side of the same coin.
Heads, I win, tails, you lose.
Freedom is dead. I really don't feel like celebrating the 4th next week. To me, it's become a hollow joke.
I honestly wonder if Roberts didn’t just get tired of the country trying to balance itself on the edge of the precipice and finally decided to give it a good boot in the butt just to get things moving to the next phase.
What he did, though, was tell us, “you don’t like it? Then vote for representatives who will destroy it or shut the hell up. I’m not doing your dirty work any more.” In a democracy, not only do we get the government we deserve, but we NEED TO. We need to see that actions have consequences, not that some supreme court judge is going to fly in with his cape flowing in the wind and protect us from ourselves.
There might be an ignition point where the temperature reaches a critical stage required for a conflagration.Then again, it could all fizzle out.
The more outrageous and over the top the administration and their minions behave, the better chance that ignition point is reached.
It’s far worse than Hanson thinks it is.
Here is my take (keep in mind I have only read the first few pages of the decision, more goodies are probably located within)
The libs have been using the commerce clause since roosevelt to push their agenda through... the courts have backed them up.
They have also used the Necessary and General clause to push through their agenda... the courts have backed them up.
They have also slowly eroded states rights... the courts have backed them up.
All 3 of these items were the “sledgehammer” that the commies and socialists used to force their agenda through.
No more. Roberts took that sledgehammer away and gave them back a one ounce tack hammer.
The states were not allowed to opt out of fubocare without incurring a large financial penalty. Roberts tood that penalty away, allowing the individual states the opportunity to opt out. Victory for states rights.
The commerce clause cannot be used to create commerce in order to regulate it. Victory for conservatives and reaffirms the power of the court to rule out legislation that uses this clause ( most if not all the libs premier social programs were passed this way, no more ).
The Necessary and general clause can no longer be interpreted to include any damn social program the libs see fit to pass. Victory once again for conservatives and constitution loving people everywhere.
As for the tax thing, the congress has ALWAYS had this power. They got nothing extra or added because of this ruling.
All this means is that anything they pass from this point forward has to be called a tax. The genie is out of the bottle, and clarity in government will be the result.
Roberts hoodwinked the shit out of the libs, and has restored more constitutional limits on government than any other justice before him.
My guess ( and this is only a guess ) is that the libs wanted this thing so badly that they were willing to do ANYTHING to have it upheld. Roberts saw the opportunity and took it. The disgust of the old bag ginsberg regarding his majority opinion is enough to satisfy me that this was the case.
I firmly believe that you get the government you elect. With a lousy 50% turnout getting called heavy, it turns my stomach. Roberts took the opportunity to slap down the voting public, rightfully telling US that it is our responsibility to elect people that represent our views. He is 100% correct on this count.
In order to change the way this government functions will take at least 80 to 90% turnout at the polls.
Roberts struck a major blow for constitutionalism yesterday. Now, it is our turn.
I believe we will reach “critical mass”. The question for me is not if, but when.
And I strongly believe Obama will not finish his term. It will probably be due to personal meltdown.
I’m looking forward to his “biggest tax increase in US history” becoming a hot election issue. He was already doing very poorly. I figure he’ll lose it.
It’s a continuation of established & accepted tax law:
You pay $X unless you can demonstrate a qualifying deduction.
Go thru your 1040 form and notice there’s a bunch of such cases: sometimes X is a fixed amount, sometimes it varies, usually it’s veiled by some indirection but upshot is you pay that amount unless you can demonstrate a qualifying deduction.
Now one of the qualifying deductions is gov’t-approved health insurance, and X = $3000.
For 47% of “taxpayers”, the small fraction thereof who don’t have that qualifying deduction will have other deductions which will reduce that amount to $0.
It’s like current taxation:
You pay $1000 unless you have a dependent child with a Social Security Number.
You pay $500 unless you purchased a home-energy-reduction product (insulation, solar panels, etc.).
You pay $1000 (or whatever) unless you purchased an electric car.
There’s a whole bunch of products for which you, in effect, pay a tax if you don’t buy (flip side of getting a deduction if you do).
Just a new take on standard law.
I don’t like where I’m taking this.
How fast can we get an Amendment through the states?
I don't see how this is possible. When have they been able to tax anyone/everyone just for living and breathing? I agree with the other assessments, but this one (and you're not the only one who's said this) makes no sense to me.
Yeah. The cute part is that the media have two years to spin it before the hammer comes down.
This is no different than me driving past a federal park that has a $5 admission fee and being told I must pay $4 for not entering. No one in their right mind could reasonably argue that I was not being punished for failing to enter the park.
Victor David Hanson sees things as I do. I am as appalled as he that people are busily polishing the turds we have been presented, and calling them shiny.
“There was nothing good about yesterdays ruling.”
I don’t buy into this theory totally, I agree this decision doesn’t make sense no matter how I view it, but there is one salient point, and that is the fact that if you are going to try and force people to do what you want through the tax code, then at least it will be out in the open as a tax, and not hidden under the false pretense of a mandate.
Do you think Obamacare would have passed as a tax increase?
The very term Tax Increase, for whatever reason, will be a hard battle to win in any congress.
You brought some clarity I had not seen. Thank you very much. The only thing you mentioned that I had seen, and I really appreciated, was this statement by you:
“Roberts took the opportunity to slap down the voting public, rightfully telling US that it is our responsibility to elect people that represent our views. He is 100% correct on this count.”
And his statements to that effect within the decision itself was the truly sweet part of this.
It's unbelievable, I suppose it's a coping mechanism.
When all other rights are taken away, the right of rebellion is made perfect. - Thomas Paine
This just depresses the hell out of me...again.
they were granted and have always had this power. The only reason they do no use it is we the people would throw them out on their collective asses.
Now that they have to call a spade a spade (taxes) they will be even more heistant to pass anything that includes extra taxes... hence, transparency.
You should be able to differentiate between estimable NR contributors such as Mssrs. Hanson and Steyn—and the NRO lily-livered editorial staff.
And his statements to that effect within the decision itself was the truly sweet part of this.
This argument is specious.
The 2010 elections were a direct result of 0bama/Roberts Care. Had the SCOTUS sent the bill back to Congress for a do-over, it would not come out of the current representation anywhere close to where it is now. The people did speak at the ballot box and Roberts vetoed their input. Roberts is constitutionally retarded.
I think playing the Obama video with Stephonopolis, adamantly saying this was not a tax, followed by showing his attorneys arguing that it IS a tax before the SCOTUS will, itself be enough to get him out of office, especially if used to amplify and support all the other arguments that he is duplicitous in his governing style.
I’ve said since about late 2009 that he is either the amateur he appears to be, and will go down hard, or he is the beast in Revelation and it will take God’s overt action to deal with him. I suspect we will find out sometime in the next 3.5 to 4 years.
(to the good old Ben)
No, Sir. We can not keep it a Republic.
At least it was a glorious run for some > 200 years.
I think you have a very good point. The people do need to take responsibility for the trash they elect to office. At the same time, I suspect that Judge Roberts has either by nefarious intention or by his wish to drop the ball back in our laps, has handed us the tools to reshape our government and nation, but only if we are willing to do the work ourselves. If we choose to pout, cry and whine about how unfair it is to have bad government rather than take back our government; so be it. We can be subjects.
I very much enjoyed reading your post and your reasoning. I am trying to find some positives in Roberts’ ruling. Sometimes I wish some of the wiser legal beagle Freepers could do a point-counterpoint.
For example, Freeper Buckwheat surely does not see your sliver (I meant sliver not silver) of linings, and I’d like to hear your point counterpoint to his argument which is also substantial regarding limitations on the commerce clause.
I agree with his point that you just can’t tax everything. Doesn’t it have to have some constitutional basis otherwise we are just paying 9 black robes to sit in black robes ?
Taxing power or commerce clause - does it really make any difference if we still wind up screwed and constitutionally violated?
Here is Buckwheat’s argument to be digested and compared to your equally astute observations.
“The Roberts opinion is the Wickard of our generation.
You will recall that Wickard v. Filburn, 317 U.S. 111 (1942) vividly re-imagined the Commerce Clause so that it covered a farmer growing a crop for his private use on his own land. In this case the fact that he was growing grain to feed to his own livestock and because he was not going to put that grain on the market, he was somehow possibly going to have an effect on interestate commerce and that gave the federal government the nexus for regulating the crop.
Wickard plagues us today. Most recently in Gonzales v. Raich (2005), where a the Court ruled that a person, growing marijuana on her own property with her own soil somehow was engaged in interestate commerce.
In Raich, the court said, Congress can regulate purely intrastate activity that is not itself commercial, in that it is not produced for sale, if it concludes that failure to regulate that class of activity would undercut the regulation of the interstate market in that commodity.
Now we have an expansion of this treasonous logic, for if government can wrap anything in an activity that can be taxed, then it too is legitimate, no matter how extreme.
I would point out that taxes must only be levied for legitimate government functions, and those come from the enumerated powers. In this ruling, the Court stated that ObamaCare could not be justified under the ever-elastic Commerce Clause. In doing so, they admitted it was not found in the enumerated powers. But since it was suddenly a tax, the tax could be levied and the law could stand.
So, in my opinion, this ruling is treasonous because it devises an end run around the Ninth and Tenth Amendments.”
“Freedom is dead. I really don’t feel like celebrating the 4th next week. To me, it’s become a hollow joke.”
I agree. In fact I just had an exchange with the 1 democrat remaining in my group of friends and she wished us all a “happy 4th of July.”
I replied to all with, “I agree, it is no longer independence day, just the 4th.”
She replied, “Smart ass CSM, you don’t hold the market on patriotism.”
I replied, “It is now precedent that we can be taxed for INACTIVITY. We are no longer an independent people.”
I find it disgusting that anyone could claim this legislation was “patriotic.” Personally, I am angry that I made any sacrifice in my life to protect our freedoms when all it took was a black robe to steal them anyway. I am very angry and depressed, almost more so than after 9-11. Maybe more so......I am trying to decide between foreign enemies and domestic enemies.
—This argument is specious. —
It is not an argument. It is an observation.
Either celebrate Independence Day or pay the Tax.............
“As for the tax thing, the congress has ALWAYS had this power.”
Wrong. They have never been able to tax INACTIVITY. They have had the power to tax the states (fair aportionment or whatever), implement excise taxes (tax activity) and tax income of any sort (16th ammendment.)
By instituting a new ability to tax INACTIVITY, we have just removed any remaining limits on the Federal Government. In addition, we have no legal remedy to fix this Constitutinal Crisis!
America died yesterday...she was already severely wounded, but we now have no legal recourse to “re-limit” the federal government’s reach.
Maybe for you, but it is part of traitor Roberts’ (fallacious) argumentation.
All of these legal niceties ignore the precarious economic straits we are in. Teetering on the edge of the precipice, our only hope was for business to gain some short term hope had Obamacare been thrown out. The fact that now it will be at least seven months before any action to cripple or repeal will be undertaken may be the difference.
Unfortunately, big economic changes take at least six months to affect things - just enough to get Obama past election day. (then comes the crash)
—The people do need to take responsibility for the trash they elect to office. At the same time, I suspect that Judge Roberts has either by nefarious intention or by his wish to drop the ball back in our laps, has handed us the tools to reshape our government and nation, but only if we are willing to do the work ourselves. If we choose to pout, cry and whine about how unfair it is to have bad government rather than take back our government; so be it. We can be subjects.—
Yep. I think Roberts is trying to give teeth to the phrase “you get the government you deserve” and is telling us that if this ridiculous monstrosity survives, we have nobody to blame but ourselves, and we have a golden opportunity in just a few months to do something.
Let us see if we are up to the task.
I have already made several decisions about ObamaCare. First, I won’t cave and let them force me to buy something I don’t want or need at the present. Second, I won’t cave to the IRS and pay their “fine” (tax) for something I haven’t purchased. Finally, I will let them send me to prison for not caving to them.
If we all refuse to “buy” the insurance and pay the “fine”. there aren’t enough jail cells to hold the majority of America in prison.
Bobby Kennedy, years ago when he was the US Attorney General, said that civil disobedience is a necessary way to overcome bad and unfair laws.
Let’s find out.
No. That's why it wasn't passed as a tax increase, it was passed as a penalty. Roberts did not rule on the law, he re-wrote it, using arguments advanced by neither party. It is a breathtaking judicial over-reach.
Roberts took the opportunity to slap down the voting public, rightfully telling US that it is our responsibility to elect people that represent our views. He is 100% correct on this count.
And his statements to that effect within the decision itself was the truly sweet part of this.”
As a Representative Republic with 3 equal branches of government that were designed to provide CHECKS AND BALANCES on each other, our Chief Justice failed to perform his duty. The Court’s only job is to protect the individual from an over reaching federal government that is LIMITED BY THE USSC!
If Chief Justice Roberts is correct that it is not the job of the court to protect individuals from the voting public, then we might as well disband the court completely.
He failed to perform his explicit duty and should be held accountable.