In a ruling written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the U.S. Supreme Court — the same entity that acknowledged in 1819 that the “power to tax is the power to destroy” –has ruled that the federal government can use the taxing power to compel its subjects to participate in a government-run corporatist health care system.
During a 2009 interview with the obsequious George Stephanopolos, President Obama said that he “absolutely reject[s] the notion” that the federal health care mandate is a tax increase. This morning, the Court, in a 5-4 ruling written by nominal conservative Chief Justice Roberts, rejected the Obama administration’s argument that the Constitution’s Commerce Clause permits an individual health care mandate; however, the Court also claimed that it could impose such a directive by means of a direct un-apportioned tax (which is not authorized by the Constitution – see Article I section 2, clause 3 — and thus is expressly forbidden by it, as if that mattered anymore).
“Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness,” wrote Roberts, deploying the tactical disingenuousness such people always display whenever they ratify a federal power grab. This feigned humility was used to cloak an unambiguous lie: The measure Roberts describes is a direct un-apportioned tax, which, as we’ve seen, is explicitly forbidden by the Constitution.
In the opinion he wrote on behalf of the four dissenting justices, Antonin Scalia described the Obamacare individual mandate, and the powers arrogated by Washington to enforce it, as a “blatant violation of the constitutional structure,” irrespective of the conceptual framework used to justify it.
Scalia pointed out that with respect to the constitutional power “to tax and spend for the general welfare,” the High Court “has long since expanded that beyond … taxing and spending for those aspects of the general welfare that were within the Federal Government’s enumerated powers” to the point that it now effectively manages practically every aspect of the lives of U.S. citizens – and has absorbed all of the powers and functions once reserved to the states. The gravamen of this case, Scalia insists, is not whether the mandate can be justified on grounds other than the Commerce Clause, but whether there are any identifiable limits on the exercise of federal power:
What is absolutely clear, affirmed by the text of the 1789 Constitution, by the Tenth Amendment ratified in 1791, and by innumerable cases of ours in the 220 years since, is that there are structural limits upon federal power—upon what it can prescribe with respect to private conduct, and upon what it can impose upon the sovereign States. Whatever may be the conceptual limits upon the Commerce Clause and upon the power to tax and spend, they cannot be such as will enable the Federal Government to regulate all private conduct and to compel the States to function as administrators of federal programs.
The Obamacare statute “exceeds federal power both in mandating the purchase of health insurance and in denying non-consenting States all Medicaid funding,” Scalia concludes. “These parts of the Act are central to its design and operation, and all the Act’s other provisions would not have been enacted without them. In our view it must follow that the entire statute is inoperative.”
Roberts’ ruling is applied Leninism – a pragmatic way of justifying the government’s intention to exercise “power without limit, resting directly on force.” Money and time are essentially the same thing; one earns money by investing his time – an irreplaceable and finite quantity – in commerce or labor. Through taxation the State steals life incrementally, rather than destroying it outright.
In his decision, Chief Justice Roberts has placed the High Court’s imprimatur on the proposition that the regime ruling us can steal our lives incrementally in order to force each of us to participate in a health care program that will regulate every aspect of the lives that remain – and either kill or imprison those of us who refuse to participate.
Read the ruling here.