Chief Justice John Roberts’ decision on the ObamaCare case was, if anything, even worse than most conservative critics have said. At CFIF, I consider it point by point. Although I didn’t use these terms, what I show is that Roberts mischaracterized precedents, tortured logic, deliberately skated around constitutional restrictions on the taxing power, redefined words, unliterally rewrote the statute in two places, conflated tax breaks with an unprecedented beast amounting to a tax on inactivity, blatantly politicized the court in the name of avoiding a politicized image, and, as an aside, elevated a cliched aphorism to quasi-precedential status. In some places, he was grossly intellectually dishonest; in others, he was intellectually incoherent and/or philosophically hollow. If indeed he bowed to pressure from Barack Obama and the media, then he was pathetically craven; in finding a taxing power that not a single other court had found, he was stupendously arrogant. The decision was hamhandedly manipulative, logically insupportable, and deeply cynicial — and, of course, was, throughout the taxing part, full of utter sophistry.
Maybe Roberts was hoping that, with regard to the East Coast establishment, he will be seen like Confederate General Johnston was outside Atlanta, when he kept retreating rather than engaging Gen. Sherman in battle. A local newspaper editor, enthralled, wrote the Johnston’s reputation had “grown with every backward step.”
In terms of constitutional law and effective limits on federal action, by acknowledging limits on the Commerce Clause while expanding them on the taxing power he was like the American officer in Vietnam who said he had to “destroy the village in order to save it.” This decision was the judicial equivalent of a justice showing evidence of suffering from Stockholm Syndrome with regard to the coastal “elites.”
Call Roberts the Bart Stupak of the Supreme Court. He capitulation was just that bad.
Again, please do read my CFIF piece. Here’s one paragraph, from a much larger article:
The maxim to choose an interpretation of a law that would accept the law as constitutional, over an alternative interpretation that doesn’t, is meant to apply in cases where the two interpretations are equally or near-equally reasonable. Here, though, as we have seen, Roberts had to strain and stretch and twist and skate and float and use misdirection in order to somehow, some way, pretend to impose a plausible interpretation on an assertion that is not even in the same logical solar system as interpretations that are “straightforward” and “natural.”
And yes, I do cite chapter and verse (figuratively speaking) to back up these assertions and conclusions.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?