Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Defending The American Dream

obama-roberts hi 5
I cross posted what Erick Erickson had written about Chief Justice John Roberts joining the Left on SCOTUS in affirming Obamacare is Constitutional legislation. Roberts voted with the Left with the proviso that Obamacare cannot force funding by forcing citizens to pay a penalty to the government for not purchasing a product. The product in the case is government mandated insurance. Roberts’ majority opinion indicates thus Obamacare cannot be based on the Commerce Clause of the Constitution as was the original intention of the Obamacare legislation (Officially known as Affordable Care Act).

The only way Obamacare can be Constitutional is as a TAX. Thus, John Roberts attempted to make Obamacare an issue Congress deals with instead of the Courts. At the time I thought Erickson’s analysis of Roberts joining the Leftist Justices was good insight.

I was going through my email (I am always behind), I discovered Justin Smith’s take on Chief Justice Roberts joining the Leftist Justices affirming Obamacare. I am now of the opinion that Roberts’ decision had good intentions; HOWEVER by making the penalty for not getting mandated insurance a tax Roberts opened a can of worms that could justify Congressional taxation in future forced penalties the might require Americans to buy a product.

Justin Smith has an excellent point.

JRH 7/17/12
Defending The American Dream

By Justin Smith
Sent: 7/14/2012 1:31 PM

Chief Justice John Roberts decided to uphold the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act after first deciding to rule against it. Supposedly, he chose this path to uphold the "integrity" of the Supreme Court by giving the Court a heightened appearance of fairmindedness and not marked by political divisions. And, he attempted to achieve a 6-3 majority opinion by convincing Justice Kennedy to join him. Kennedy refused and, in turn, tried to get Roberts to abide by his first choice. Rather than upholding the integrity of a Court that historically has always been somewhat split along political lines, Justice Roberts' actions have highlighted the importance of Supreme Court nominations making the Court a focus of the November elections, since the next president will potentially seat the next four Supreme Court Justices, and have made the Court seem duplicitous, desirious of adulation from the press, and, in all actuality, too motivated by politics at the expense of the U.S. Constitution, which all the Justices have sworn to be their guide in administering justice!

From our U.S. Constitution: "Congress shall have the power to lay and collect pay debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all...shall be uniform throughout the United States...'uniform'...Therefore Roberts should have found this Act unconstitutional based on the multiple exemptions given across the nation. Whatever happened to the equal application of the law?

Although the Court majority accepted that the federal government is not permitted to force individuals to buy services they do not want, by calling the penalty for not buying health insurance a tax, the Court has opened a Pandora's Box. Now, in theory if not practice, all Americans can be taxed for not buying something the federal government/Nanny State thinks we need...any product...any service...anything!

Roberts' opinion/ruling states, "That Congress apparently regards such extensive failure to comply with the mandate as tolerable suggests that Congress did not think it was creating four million outlaws. It suggests instead that the shared responsibility payment merely imposes a tax citizens may lawfully choose to pay in lieu of buying health insurance." No! The Progressive Communists that pushed this bill through over the objections of 70% of the American people, thinking or not, simply did not care as they were giddy with absolute power and the corruption it entailed. Outlaw or patriot, describe me as you wish; I have no intention of obeying this mandate or paying any associated fine, and several states have already stated that they would not comply, as they also opt out of the Medicaid aspect of this Act.

"General welfare" applies to the United States as a whole. The redistribution of wealth, or "transfer payments" among citizens, like those mandated under Obamacare does not qualify for taxation in an originalist reading of the Constitution. Taxation and regulation are close substitutes, so a limitation on one power is negated if the other power is still available. No practical difference exists between ordering an action and taxing or fining people who don't obey. As illustrated in the Child Labor Tax case of 1922 and the U.S. v Butler in 1936, Chief Justice Roberts has ignored a fundamental principle: If direct regulation is beyond the scope of the Commerce Clause, as he ruled, then taxation as an indirect route to the same regulation is not an option as well, which he failed to find or admit.

Roberts initially did not find the "tax" argument particularly plausible, however, he quotes Justice Holmes in explanation of his ruling: "As between two possible interpretations of a statute, by one of which it would be unconstitutional and by the other valid, our plain duty is to adopt that which will save the act." What utter nonsense to apply this logic to so clearly an unconstitutional Act. Roberts' only duty was to uphold the U.S. Constitution and determine the constitutionality of this Affordable Care Act, not to rewrite the law and engage in judicial activism. However, he instead succumbed to pressure from the Leftists across the nation and the White House, the Left Court itself and the left-leaning "mainstream media", as he applied his own version of upholding the "integrity" of the Court; if anything, Roberts has lost sight of that integrity, and in so doing, he has diminished and severely harmed the U.S. Constitution. This unnatural show of restraint and the twisted, convoluted path Roberts took to declare the penalty a tax in deference to the President's Office and Congress is tantamount to a dereliction of judicial duty and a danger to each and every American's Liberty and Freedom!

Rather than find Obamacare unconstitutional outright and discarding the entire Act, Roberts got cute and clever, as he rolled the dice with our Freedom at stake. Speaking only for himself, Roberts said, "It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices." Roberts simply made a coward's choice, because when he was nominated for the Court, he told Congress that he did not view striking down a federal law as judicial activism. Twenty-one tax increases and numerous regulations limiting our Freedom are contained within Obamacare; despite what five lawyers in the Supreme Court said and if ever a law deserved being struck down, this Affordable Care Act was the one.

Roberts' only saving grace was calling the penalty associated with the individual mandate a tax, which enables Congress to repeal this bill with a simple 51 majority vote through reconciliation. Also, due to the fact that entitlement policies are all fiscal in nature, they must go into a budget; budgetary matters cannot be filibustered. Virtually all of this bill can be repealed effectively through reconciliation, and whatever is left, mainly regulatory policy, will be totally neutralized and useless. But, in order to achieve this, Conservative Statesmen, who are willing to make the hard choices, must gain the majority in the Senate.

Mitt Romney's simple statements have a certain profound essence in describing the Affordable Care Act: "Obamacare was bad policy yesterday; it's bad policy today. Obamacare was bad law yesterday; it's bad law today."

Americans don't consider the Affordable Care Act a done deal, far from it. This is simply a clarion call, a spur to action. We must not let America sink further into debt through this unsustainable monstrosity called "obamacare", which has already caused insurance costs to increase by 30% (COBRA doubled) and prompted many primary care physicians to consider leaving medicine. We cannot allow these debilitating, crippling Freedom-killing mandates and taxes to proceed and take hold without a fight. We will uphold the integrity of the Constitution and America, and we will not abandon the American Dream and Our Children to government dependency, death-panels, less opportunity and fewer Freedoms!

By Justin O Smith

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