Yamamoto Redux

by: the Common Constitutionalist

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto said after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

I hope this is exactly what has happened. Following the unbelievably bad decision doled out by Chief John Souter-Roberts and the other hacks on the bench, I believe conservatives will rise up & turn out in mass this November. They must!

Shockingly, I’ve already heard more than once today, Justice Roberts apologists trying to explain that Roberts is conservative but just got these 2 decisions (Arizona & Obamacare) wrong.

BULL CRAP!! You are the Chief Justice of the most powerful court in the world. He can’t and I contend, he didn’t “get in wrong”, in his eyes.

There are 2 likely scenarios presently floating around to explain his actions.

Scenario number 1, is that he has always been a moderate to liberal judge and was appointed by a like-minded individual, George W. Bush. Number 1A is that “W” insisted he did not have a litmus test for appointment to the court. Roberts was asked no hard questions and could better hide his true positions.

I think this is a mistake. The president should have a “litmus test”. How else would one find out how a judge will rule. I certainly would have a test. What the heck is so wrong with knowing where a candidate stands before potentially making a permanent mistake. After all, these are lifetime appointments.

It would be like hiring an employee with a wholly inadequate interview, and once he is hired, he makes all the wrong decisions, but you may never fire him, nor may you ever leave the company. You are stuck with him in perpetuity.

Scenario number 2 has been put forth today. It is that Roberts was somehow pressured from without to change his position. Could be. If that’s the case, I have even less respect for him than I did. I believe this scenario to be unlikely.

How, after all this time of hearing the tax is not a tax but a penalty, has it magically become a tax again. Simple. Like activists do, they just change the language. Simply reinterpret the penalty clause so it’s now a tax. Roberts all but comes out and states that the congress didn’t realize it was a tax when they labelled it a penalty. Wow, Congress sure is stupid.

Thank heavens the Chief Justice was there to set them straight. The problem is that congress knew full well Obamacare wouldn’t have passed to begin with if the penalty was called a tax. Obama said it himself on several occasions. That’s why they labelled it a penalty in the first place. Those who crafted this piece of crap knew exactly what they were doing. and how to properly word it.

So now the precedent has been set. Congress may now tax us for virtually anything they please in conjunction with the health of the citizenry. And, of course, everything can be said to involve our health. The food you consume, the car you drive, where you live, etc.

Keep Smiling Comrade Roberts

 But, you say, we can elect those who promise to repeal Obamacare in full. That will take care of it, right? Only partially. The law would be no more, but the Supreme Court taxing precedent cannot be undone without the court, itself, reversing it. What are the odds of that happening?

Don’t listen to the inside-the-beltway apologists like George Will, Charles Krauthammer, or even Erick Erickson. There was no lesson learned, no victory of any kind.

If you want to learn something, read the dissenting opinion of the 4 justices that stood up for us and more importantly, took their job seriously and did the only thing they were appointed to do, stood up for the Constitution.  

Thank you Justices Sam Alido, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas & I can’t believe I’m doing this, but also Anthony Kennedy. We had this won but for Roberts.

Never thought I’d say this either but, GO MITT!

Then we need to “repeal & replace” everyone in the republican leadership, both in the House and Senate.

Standing “O” for the Chief Justice

by: the Common Constitutionalist

So the Supreme Court, or should I say 5 of them, in conjunction with King Barack, Janet “Big Sis” Napolitano and Eric “The Red” Holder, have granted defacto amnesty to those who invade the state of Arizona and most likely, the rest of the country. What’s to stop them now? Like a Christmas sale at Walmart, they will rush the gate. Once they are here, as long as they don’t commit a felony, they’re home free.

Which way to the voting booth?

The wizards of smart who criticize state and local government action on immigration fail to keep in mind one simple but critical point: The states have these rights.

It is preposterous to take the position that, short of federal action or the commission of a crime, governors and mayors are constitutionally powerless to deal with illegal immigrants within their states and cities. The argument that state and local governments must incur enormous fiscal and societal costs, asserting that all aspects of immigration (legal or illegal) are entirely the purview of the federal government, is constitutionally suspect, if not absurd.

The Ninth and Tenth Amendments firmly established the federalist system of government by first stating that the rights contained in the Bill of Rights should “not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people” and adding the corollary limiting provision that “powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution…are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

The power delegated to Congress, in this matter, seems to me, quite clear. Article 1, Section 8, paragraph 4 states, “Congress shall have the power… to establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization”. Plain English; no more, no less.  Naturalization and Immigration are not synonymous and must not be construed as such.

The legal definition of Naturalization: “The act by which an alien is made a citizen of the United States of America.”

The legal definition of Immigration: “The removing into one place from another. It differs from emigration, which is the moving from one place into another.

You know James Madison, the father of our Constitution. If he wanted immigration to be the sole purview of the federal government, he would have put it in there.

He did, however state the following in Federalist 45:  “The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all (emphasis added) the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the States.”

I’d say immigration is encompassed in Madison’s statement and I’m not a Supreme Court Justice.

As the U.S. Supreme Court found more than 100 years ago in Manigault v. Springs, 199 U.S. 473, 480 (1905), state and local police power is “an exercise of the sovereign right of the Government to protect the lives, health, morals, comfort and general welfare of the people.” This decision followed Sturges v. Crowninshield, 17 U.S. 122, 193 (1819), in which the Supreme Court found that those sovereign powers “proceed, not from the people of America, but from the people of the several states; and remain, after the adoption of the constitution, what they were before.”

In my opinion, the Constitution, which was ratified by a razor thin margin in the first place, would have never been, if the states knew they would had to surrender their sovereignty on this issue.

If immigration is indeed the sole responsibility of the feds, are not sanctuary cities then illegal? After all, these cities took it upon themselves to grant favorable immigration status to some, outside federal jurisdiction.

Arizona was simply trying to affirm already existing federal law.

What about other things, like the fact that some states have emission standards that are higher than the federal. Is that not illegal? How about local or state minimum wage laws that exceed the federal. Why is that legal?

I could continue to demonstrate the absurd by being absurd but I think I’ve made my point.

My frustration stems from incredulity. How is it that a clear majority of Americans agree with Arizona, yet congress does nothing? A nation of well over 300 million people could be ruled by so few. 5 in this case.

Buckle up. It may get worse come Thursday! Our lives literally hang in the balance.

Attribution: Matt Mayer at Heritage

Who Needs Enemies…

Republican Surrenderists for Obamacare

by: Michelle Malkin

During the summer of 2009, conservative activists turned up the heat on Democratic politicians to protest the innovation-destroying, liberty-usurping Obamacare mandate. In the summer of 2012, it’s squishy Republican politicians who deserve the grassroots flames.

In case you hadn’t heard, even if the Supreme Court overturns the progressives’ federal health care juggernaut, prominent GOP leaders vow to preserve its most “popular” provisions. These big-government Republicans show appalling indifference to the dire market disruptions and culture of dependency that Obamacare schemes have wrought.

GOP Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri, vice chair of the Senate GOP Conference, told a St. Louis radio station two weeks ago that he supports keeping at least three Obamacare regulatory pillars: federally imposed coverage of “children” up to age 26 on their parents’ health insurance policies (the infamous, unfunded “slacker mandate”), federally mandated coverage regardless of pre-existing conditions (“guaranteed issue,” which leads to an adverse-selection death spiral) and closure of the coverage gap in the massive Bush-backed Medicare drug entitlement (the “donut hole fix” that will obliterate the program’s cost-controls).

Some Republicans are even trying to out-Obama Obamacare. GOP Rep. Steve Stivers of Ohio is pushing a proposal to increase the mandatory coverage age for dependents to age 31. And once a fire-breathing dragon for repeal, GOP Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee hem-hawed when asked by the liberal Talking Points Memo website whether Republicans would be introducing specific bills to preserve the guaranteed issue and slacker mandate provisions.

“Well, I think we need to be prepared,” Alexander told TPM. “And we will be prepared.”

How about getting informed? As I reported while the Obamacare backroom wheeling-dealing was going on, some 20 states already had passed legislation requiring insurers to cover adult children before the federal rule was imposed, and nearly 20 others were already on the expensive path toward doing so. In New Jersey, Wisconsin and elsewhere, these top-down benefits mandates were among key factors driving up the cost of insurance and limiting access instead of expanding it.

Fortunately for fiscal conservatives, GOP Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina still has his head screwed on straight. Last week, he blasted GOP enablers of the welfare state. He notes that “multiple studies have suggested that every 1 percent increase in premiums increases the number of uninsured by approximately 200,000 to 300,000 individuals nationwide.” The slacker mandate has raised premiums by at least 1 percent since it was enacted, DeMint adds, meaning “that hundreds of thousands of individuals have lost coverage — because they were priced out of the individual market, or because their employers decided to stop offering coverage — as a result of the new requirements.”

This is no textbook hypothetical. No less than the Service Employees International Union Local 1199 — one of Obamacare’s biggest cheerleaders — dropped health care coverage for children in late 2010 because of costly mandates, including, you guessed it, the slacker mandate. “Our limited resources are already stretched as far as possible,” the SEIU 1199 benefits managers wrote in a letter to more than 30,000 families, “and meeting this new requirement would be financially impossible.”

Chris Jacobs, senior analyst for the Senate Joint Economic Committee, points to a new study by the left-leaning Commonwealth Fund that reveals that the benefits of the slacker provision have “disproportionately accrued to affluent and wealthy families.” Moreover, this unfunded mandate is fostering greater dependency — and providing employment disincentives — by encouraging high numbers of young adults to reject other forms of insurance in order to take advantage of “free” parental coverage.

Where does presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney stand? Despite repeated assurances that he will abandon Obamacare in its entirety, Romney is surrounded by GOP socialized medicine helpmates. In January, Romney adviser Norm Coleman said, “(We’re) not going to repeal the act in its entirety … you can’t whole cloth throw it out.”

Earlier this month, Romney named former Utah GOP Gov. Mike Leavitt his transition leader. Leavitt supports and has profited handsomely from Obamacare’s health care exchange mandate. Then there’s the Romneycare mandate in Massachusetts, conceived by Obamacare architect and MIT economist Jonathan Gruber, which includes the very same slacker mandate provision enshrined in the Democrats’ law.

Who needs enemies when you’ve got Republican Surrenderists for Obamacare waiting in the wings?

Law vs. Morality

 Liberty-loving Patriots Have a Duty to Disobey Unconstitutional Laws

By: Walter E. Williams
(One of my Heros & favorite Limbaugh fill-in host)

Let’s think about whether all acts of Congress deserve our respect and obedience. Suppose Congress enacted a law — and the Supreme Court ruled it constitutional — requiring American families to attend church services at least three times a month. Should we obey such a law? Suppose Congress, acting under the Constitution’s commerce clause, enacted a law requiring motorists to get eight hours of sleep before driving on interstate highways. Its justification might be that drowsy motorists risk highway accidents and accidents affect interstate commerce. Suppose you were a jury member during the 1850s and a free person were on trial for assisting a runaway slave, in clear violation of the Fugitive Slave Act. Would you vote to convict and punish?

A moral person would find each one of those laws either morally repugnant or to be a clear violation of our Constitution. You say, “Williams, you’re wrong this time. In 1859, in Ableman v. Booth, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 constitutional.” That court decision, as well as some others in our past, makes my case. Moral people can’t rely solely on the courts to establish what’s right or wrong. Slavery is immoral; therefore, any laws that support slavery are also immoral. In the words of Thomas Jefferson, “to consider the judges as the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions (is) a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy.”

Soon, the Supreme Court will rule on the constitutionality of Obamacare, euphemistically titled the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. There is absolutely no constitutional authority for Congress to force any American to enter into a contract to buy any good or service. But if the court rules that Obamacare is constitutional, what should we do?

State governors and legislators ought to summon up the courage of our Founding Fathers in response to the 5th Congress’ Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798. Led by Jefferson and James Madison, the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798 and 1799 were drafted where legislatures took the position that the Alien and Sedition Acts were unconstitutional. They said, “Resolved, That the several States composing, the United States of America, are not united on the principle of unlimited submission to their general government … (and) whensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force.” The 10th Amendment to our Constitution supports that vision: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

In a word, if the Supreme Court rules that Obamacare is constitutional, citizens should press their state governors and legislatures to nullify the law. You say, “Williams, the last time states got into this nullification business, it led to a war that cost 600,000 lives.” Two things are different this time. First, most Americans are against Obamacare, and secondly, I don’t believe that you could find a U.S. soldier who would follow a presidential order to descend on a state to round up or shoot down fellow Americans because they refuse to follow a congressional order to buy health insurance.

Congress has already gone far beyond the powers delegated to it by the Constitution. In Federalist No. 45, Madison explained: “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite.” That vision has been turned on its head; it’s the federal government whose powers are numerous and indefinite, and those of the state are now few and defined.

Former slave Frederick Douglass advised: “Find out just what people will submit to and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them. … The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.”

Barack and the Supremes

By: The Common Constitutionalist

I’d like to speak of the Obamacare legacy. Not what Obamacare will do to just healthcare, but the affect it will have on virtually every aspect of American life.

I personally know people; friends, colleagues and coworkers that will be adversely affected if Obamacare is allowed to withstand Supreme Court scrutiny. Adversely affected. That’s an understatement. How about crushed.

We here the liberals decry how unfair the current free-market (had to gag a little there. Our healthcare is far from free-market) system is. The poor are literally left to die in the streets. We all know this to be bunk, but it’s pretty close to the way they describe it.

We will all be adversely affected, but the ones the grand designers claim to care about, those currently on Medicare & Medicaid, will suffer the most.

Medicare is, of course, government controlled medical care for the elderly & Medicaid mainly for the poor.

For those on Medicare, there will be death panels. Oh, they won’t be called that, but rest assured, or should I say, Rest in Peace, there will a panel of government bureaucrats to decide whether you deserve that new hip or pacemaker. Old Granny, at 85, can’t benefit from an MRI like that 30-year-old taxpayer or that 40-year-old would benefit more from a cancer screening than Gramps, at 80.

The poor, currently on Medicaid, will of course get the shaft due to rationing. They will get what’s left over from the productive members of society. This is of course a form of eugenics. If you are unable to prove that you are of value to the collective, you will naturally be last in line for medical care, as are the elderly.

Not a very rosy picture, I’ll grant you, but I believe that if we continue down this path, it will be the logical end.

This is just one of the reasons this Supreme Court decision is so paramount.

If the High Court bestows constitutional precedence on Obamacare, there is no end to the government’s meddling in our everyday affairs.

Why couldn’t the government just tell us that we have to buy broccoli or brussel sprouts or some other nasty vegetable and must consume them daily, in the name of improving our health?

A whole new government department could be formed. Think of all the new jobs. It could be called The Major Intergovernmental Council of Health Education for Life Long Excellence or MICHELLE. There would be an army of agents similar to the electric company meter readers. They would travel the countryside making sure we all had our proper intake of good food and, of course, all the while, keeping a trained eye out for contraband like salt or a black market cheeseburger hidden under the mattress.

The president could appoint a new government fast food oversight board. After all, it is said that fast food is making us fat and killing us all. This will surely put a strain on the health care system. Maybe the board recommends to the president that fast food restaurants simply be closed.

Another board could be responsible for alcohol and tobacco coupons. Those who consume these substances will have to present a coupon giving them permission to buy the substance. Of course, the coupons will be rationed. We wouldn’t want anyone to abuse them. That would put a strain on the health care system.

Again, look at all the jobs that are being created, but I digress.

This is what can happen with a simple Supreme Court ruling. If the Supreme Court rules that the government can force us to purchase health insurance why could they not force us to purchase anything?

Once the Supreme Court rules in favor or against anything it sets precedence. Once this precedence has been set the Constitution is all but thrown out the window. Any subsequent case that comes before the Supreme Court will simply cite that precedent as proof of its constitutionality.

Ask yourself  just how far this could go? Why could they not just start demanding more control over us?

Why could we not be told what car we had to buy or what house or where we must go on vacation? Surely having too many children would put a strain on the health care system, not to mention the school system, the food supply, et al.

The government must also concern itself with not only our health but also the health of the planet. They wouldn’t want us burning all those fossil fuels to heat and cool our homes. Naturally we would be required to purchase smart meters and smart thermostats so they could control the heating, cooling and electrical use of each house.

It would be great! We could have rolling blackouts just like Venezuela.

Now just sit back and imagine the utopia. Life will be easy. You’ll never have to make another decision again. Everything will be taken care of and we will be wanting for nothing. Kind of like being in boot camp all over again.

Life in Utopian America:

We will grow up being told what foods to eat, what school to attend and what clothes to wear.

We will be told what college to attend, what our vocation will be and how much money we will be allowed to make.

Prior to starting our new job we will be required to give one or two years of community service in order to help pay for our free college education and for the good of the collective.

We will then be free to marry a woman, a man, or perhaps our pet hamster. We will have no more than 2.4 perfect children. Of course, if they’re not perfect, we can always abort them. Don’t worry about that whole parenting thing, the schools will take care of that.

We will work at our preselected vocation for a number of years until such time as our usefulness to the collective is exhausted.

At that time we will be given our choice of residence at a lovely nearby government rest home.

When another board decides it is too costly to care for us we will simply be given a pain pill and asked to go sit in the corner and die with dignity.

It’s a Wonderful Life! Where do I sign?

Stickum Up and Buy this Healthcare plan

By Eric Peters

This is written as the Supreme Court is weighing the constitutionality of ObamaCare – in particular, it is considering whether the federal government has the authority under the Constitution to force people at gunpoint to buy a health insurance policy from a private, for-profit business. That this is even being – as opposed to dismissed out of hand – tells us just how far down the slippery slope we’ve already slid. But what most people – especially people who support the mandate – may not have considered is where the precedent about to be established will take us.

Unfortunately in law, precedent is everything, because it becomes practice.

Once the courts countenance a given thing, it becomes the basis for countenancing other, similar-in-principle things.  Some 25 years ago, when the courts ruled it was within the government’s constitutional authority to stop motorists at random, without even the pretext of probable cause (as clearly demanded – without qualification – by the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution), a precedent was established. Today, we are subject to random stops – and random searches – at any time, just about. It has become a routine – and routinely accepted – practice.

If the government has the authority to force each of us to buy a health insurance policy on the basis of “interstate commerce” or some appeal to the collective greater good – then a new precedent will have been established. Why, having gone that far, would they stop there? Do you imagine the government will stop there?  Has it ever once, having expanded its authority, failed to expand upon that authority?

Why not also force people at gunpoint to buy life insurance?  As things stand, there are families left without a breadwinner – and the breadwinner’s income – following an untimely death. Perhaps some people cannot afford to buy life insurance.  Surely life insurance is just as vital to interstate commerce – and the “security” provided by a policy just as much a “right” as the “right” to health care? Precisely the same arguments can – and will – be used. You are a fool if you don’t see it coming. And it will not come because of the government’s concern for you. It will come because of the concern over the money (and power) to be had – the two things really driving the individual mandate of Obamacare.

Private (an increasingly meaningless term) businesses have had an epiphany. They have come to realize that it’s in their interests to crawl under the sheets with the government. Because government can force people to buy the businesses’ product or service. Why compete for customers’ dollars when you can use the police power of the state to compel them to hand over the loot? And even better, you (the “private” business) no longer need worry much about quality, efficiency or customer service. After all, what are your customers going to do? They have to buy what you’re selling – or else.

As bad as HMOs and PPOs are – as Soviet and DMV-like as the staff at your doctor’s office may be – at least they cannot put a gun to your head. At least, you have the option of telling them what you think – and walking out the door. Shortly, that may change. And the only thing that will change is the threat of violence for noncompliance. The Soviet and DMV-like experience will be the same – no, it will grow worse. Because you won’t be able to say no – or walk out the door.

Not without the NKVD[People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs] stepping in to correct you. 

And then the precedent will be expanded – and become the general practice.

Life insurance. Home insurance (even if you’ve paid off your home and would rather save the $800 a year that is typically charged). And since this is a car-minded column, let’s not forget cars.

GM and Ford and the rest of them are having a heck of time selling the American consumer on the merits of electric and other “green” cars. Surely, it is in the interests of the furtherance of interstate commerce and the Greater Good that Americans be required to purchase a “green” vehicle. It would help the car companies. It would be an investment in “our future.” Surely, we cannot afford to allow selfish and irresponsible people to avoid paying their fair share….

I wish this were farce. But if the Supremes hold ObamaCare “constitutional” then we no longer have a Constitution. What we will have is the precedent of unlimited, open-ended federal authority – which in short order will become the routine practice of forcing each of us to do (and buy) literally anything. The flower will have blossomed. America will cease to exist.

But we’ll have “health care.”

And much more besides…