Monday, March 22, 2010

Murder, She Wrote

“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever.” — O’Brien to Winston Smith, Nineteen Eighty-Four*

Politically, mass civil disobedience is appropriate only as a prelude to civil war—as the declaration of a total break with a country’s political institutions. — Ayn Rand**


George Orwell’s quotation is best underscored with a photo of gloating, laughing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, hefting an over-sized gavel, one allegedly used to hammer semi-socialist Medicare Reform into law, as she lead her fawning boy toys into the House. If you want a picture of America’s future, imagine her pounding the faces of Americans with that gavel, or twisting her heel into the face of anyone who opposes her, for the sheer pleasure of it. She looks like a frivolous, mentally light-weight Society matron, but she has the soul of a killer and the shrewdness of a successful gangster. She is the distaff version of Tony Soprano, or of James Taggart of Atlas Shrugged, who wanted to hear John Galt scream. It was she who “pressured” Obama and Reid into going for broke, instead of passing health care “reform” piecemeal.

Just who is the actual President of the United States? I can’t recall our having elected a matriarch.

And, to clarify Rand's observation -- it is President Barack Obama, Pelosi, Senator Harry Reid and every Congressman who voted "Yea," and every Senator who voted for the Senate version of the same bill, who have broken with the country's political institutions to form an illegitimate statist government. The Constitution is quite clear on that matter.

Mass civil disobedience, if it can be communicated and orchestrated, is the proper response to such treason. That treason is represented in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (HR 3590), passed by the House on March 21, 10:49 p.m., on a “motion to concur in Senate Amendments.” The Democrats squeaked by with a majority of 219 for, 212 votes against. All one hundred and seventy-eight Republicans voted against the bill, and thirty-four Democrats. Readers with strong stomachs may read the proceedings of the 21st here. Readers who wish to go blind or insane reading the bill’s full text, may go here.

What is the political institution that has been usurped? A federal government constrained in its powers by the Constitution (before the Sixteenth or income tax amendment, and the Eighteenth Amendment, or Prohibition amendment), limited in its powers over individuals and states, and prohibited from expanding those powers through legislation or the courts.

In short, a government constitutionally fettered in the exercise of its power, but limited in that power to uphold and protect individual rights. And that is all.

Instead, we hear Pelosi crowing about her victory in Sunday’s health care vote in the House:

In doing so, we will honor the vows of our founders, who in the Declaration of Independence said that we are ‘endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.’ This legislation will lead to healthier lives, more liberty to pursue hopes and dreams and happiness for the American people. This is an American proposal that honors the traditions of our country.


One wishes one had the power to prohibit such creatures from quoting thinkers such as Thomas Jefferson, to prevent them from perverting the meaning of the words of their moral and intellectual superiors. Pelosi’s intention, however, was to pervert the meaning of the Declaration’s principles; make no mistake about that. Of course, there is nothing in the Constitution that mentions “health care” or any Congressional power to legislate for or against it. But words, concepts, and clear meanings are nothing to Pelosi and her co-conspirators in the White House and Congress.

The task now is to educate Americans on that point, and to persuade them to support every effort to repeal and challenge Obamacare in court -- as well as support any individual who refuses to comply and is persecuted or rounded up by the government. Americans must be persuaded of the true, evil nature of Pelosi, Reid, Obama and that whole gang. Because that gang has usurped the Constitution in complete contempt of it, of the moral principles underlying it, and of the American people, we no longer have a "representative" government -- but a clique of tyrants. This is what we must convince Americans of -- enough of them to make a difference.

I find little solace in the Democrats being dethroned in November, which is a virtual certainty. Republicans may replace most of them in the House, but I have no confidence in their ability or motive to oppose Obamacare and get it sliced, diced, or even repealed. More likely, because they share with the Democrats the same altruist premises, they will simply seek to lessen the harsher provisions of the tyranny, such as possibly disconnecting the IRS’s expanded power to collect, enforce, and punish. For as long as the Republicans do not challenge the law on moral grounds, they will remain abettors to the crime, as “fiscal conservatives” -- as they have always been with Democratically inspired “social legislation” and economic “reform.”

Should the Republicans anger the electorate as do-nothing compromisers, the Democrats may find themselves back in the saddle in 2012. Columnist Mark Steyn makes a trenchant observation about why Pelosi and the Democrats do not care if they are massacred next November.

Look at it from the Dems' point of view. You pass Obamacare. You lose the 2010 election, which gives the GOP co-ownership of an awkward couple of years. And you come back in 2012 to find your health care apparatus is still in place, a fetid behemoth of toxic pustules oozing all over the basement, and, simply through the natural processes of government, already bigger and more expensive and more bureaucratic than it was when you passed it two years earlier. That's a huge prize, and well worth a midterm timeout.


In short, the Democrats are not bothered by an electoral ostracism. The little golden treasure box of power goodies will still be there after the Republicans have cursed it but cozened the electorate by leaving all its confiscatory essentials intact, kinder, gentler, but still toxic to individual rights and liberty.

Several states have already passed resolutions, or plan to file lawsuits, citing the 10th Amendment or the right of nullification of federal law, stating that their citizens are not legally required to purchase federally mandated health insurance.

However, it will not be enough for states' attorneys general to file lawsuits against mandatory health insurance, or to cite nullification. They must also challenge the IRS enforcement provisions in the law as part of those suits. If the IRS can threaten to empty an individual’s bank account for non-compliance of the law, state law not obliging him to buy federal health insurance will not be much protection. Do not doubt the extent of thuggery Obama et al. have intended this law to reach.

A state's well-intended protection of its citizens against federal taxing power, after all, will be seen as virtual secession. The states would, explicitly or implicitly, be challenging the federal government’s power to tax, as stated in the 16th Amendment, ratified in 1913:

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.


A challenge to the mandated purchase of government-approved health insurance must logically and necessarily challenge that taxing power. Non-compliance by an individual in any state would result in a penalty tax. A state might ensure an individual’s right to not buy the insurance, but would be helpless to prevent that individual from being punished by the federal government. Such resolutions and acts by the states would be as weather vanes blowing in the wind.

So, it is the taxing authority of the federal government that must also be challenged. That event would be earth-shaking, for it would threaten all of the federal government’s powers to regulate and tax commerce and individuals (as well as the states’, counties‘, and municipalities’ own taxing powers). What are the chances of that challenge being made by the states singly or collectively? I do not hold out hope.

Furthermore, most states are dependent on federal funds for highways, education and other subsidized realms. They are addicted to federal assistance. Washington can retaliate by threatening to withhold or deny those subsidies and funds. And the challenge more likely will go poof.

That is one big carrot dangling at the end of the federal two-by-four.

Many of the proposed lawsuits against Obamacare are focusing on the language of the Constitution. One of the more credible arguments is that while Congress may regulate commerce between the states (the term regulate meaning something entirely different to the Founders, chiefly that individual state commercial law should have some uniformity), how can Congress regulate non-activity or no commerce? Or cause the commerce to occur, such as mandating the purchase of health insurance, whether within states or across state lines, and then “regulate“ it?

I would believe in the efficacy of such arguments were we not up against a gangster government (thank you, Michelle Bachmann, for that term) to whom words, oaths of office, individual rights, private property, privately earned wealth, and constitutional language mean absolutely nothing. This has been so amply and obviously demonstrated by Obama, Pelosi, Reid and their gang that I will not recount the numerous incidents there.

The Supreme Court regained some credibility when it ruled unequivocally in favor of the First Amendment in the Citizens United case. Should a challenge to Obamacare ever reach that court, could we count on an encore of that glorious moment? I am placing no bets, especially if Obama has a chance to pack the court after the retirement of Justice John Paul Stevens.

Barack Obama seems to be just a willing stooge, a youngster putty in the hands of a seasoned politician. The Wicked Witch of the West, the Harridan of the House, the Nurse Ratched of what she treats as her own private cuckoo’s nest -- America -- is but one half of the real power behind the throne in the White House. The other half is equally repellent, Rahm Emanuel, chief of staff and professional enforcer.

Bonnie and Clyde, if you will, who boasted that they robbed banks. And committed murder. Oh, I could call Pelosi especially so many more names, few of them printable here.


*Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four: Text, Sources, Criticism, 1963. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich (1982 edition), p. 178.

**”The Cashing-in: The Student Rebellion,” in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, by Ayn Rand. 1965. New York: Signet, 1967, pp. 256-7.

7 comments:

Randy said...

I had hoped after December that the concious statists taunts to us true Americans would cease. I was decieving myself and the time seems near for revolution. Woe to thee who opposes the righteous.

Anonymous said...

Ed:

You make a valid, though depressing point: the one plausible Constitutional challenge to this Bill, (that it is unprecedented and unconstitutional for the US Government to require people buy a good or service, because one exists- a clear attack on thr right to be free) may be short circuited by "gangster government" somehow. If this point is publicized, and the Tea Party people make it clear they are here to stay, and make a MORAL case for liberty AND show this bill violates that freedom, Pelosi could be put on ice, rhetorically speaking.

We all have underestimated the ruthlessness and "gangster shrewdness" of Pelosi. She is formidable. But morality and ideology is on the side of liberty and preserving this Union.

They have not won yet. But it will take a big effort by every person who wants to live free.

Edward Cline said...

I answered a query by another reader thusly:

I haven't seen the issue of the IRS provisions tackled anywhere else. But that issue came straightaway to my mind when I read of all the lawsuits and possible constitutional challenges. It's the key issue, the empowering one, and anyone raising it in court will be opening up a can of worms that will spread over the whole banquet table of statist policies. Has any state politician or conservative intellectual the courage to open that can? I don't know of very many. Obama and Congress wouldn't have bothered with mandatory health insurance if the element of force or the threat of it were not its empowering ingredient. Every -- and I mean every -- piece of social or economic legislation that has been foisted on this country must employ the element of force -- from the Sherman Antitrust Act to the Federal Reserve Act and the 16th Amendment all the way up to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and so on, almost endlessly.

As for engineering mass civil disobedience, that will take an educational campaign by thinkers, rational educators, intellectuals that will last for a while and which must be sustained. There are countless moral, well-meaning, concerned Americans out there who need moral and philosophical guidance, and they're not getting it from the Republicans. That's where I come in, in my owned limited way.

Our country changed on March 21st, at 10:39 p.m. The foundation of a socialist state was laid next to the pile of bricks that is our semi-socialist state (Social Security, Medicare, etc.). It's going to take a terrific fight to have it and those bricks removed, and replaced with something resembling the Jefferson Memorial (my personal favorite Washington "monument").

Ed

Anonymous said...

Well it didn't take long for the GOP to prove Ed right. On the huffpost "Cornyn: We won't Call for Repealing all of health care." "There is non-controversial stuff here like the preexisting conditions exclusion and those sorts of things," the Texas Republican said. "Now we are not interested in repealing that. And that is frankly a distraction."

Chris Sandvick

Tim C. said...

Here is the email I got from Pelosi's office after using the "contact your representative" link at http://www.house.gov/. Yes, I did so just to see what would happen. Unfortunately, I don't have time to address each nauseating point (many of which Mr. Cline and others already have - Ed getting special mention for his brilliance with the pen however), but I provide the raw text for whoever wishes to be informed, use it in their blog, just plain be disgusted beyond belief, what have you.

"March 26, 2010

Dear Mr. Clark:

Thank you for contacting me to express your views on health insurance reform. I appreciate hearing from you on this critical and urgent issue.

Since our nation's inception, we has striven to honor the vows of our founders, who in the Declaration of Independence said that we are 'endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.'

On March 21, 2010, the House of Representatives completed what Senator Kennedy called "the great unfinished business of our society," in passing health insurance reform legislation that ensures every American has access to quality, affordable health care as a right and not a privilege. This historic legislation, in the league of Social Security and Medicare, will lead to healthier lives, more liberty to pursue hopes and dreams and happiness for the American people.

The final health insurance reform legislation (the Senate bill as improved by the Reconciliation Bill) ensures my key goals of affordability for the middle class, accessibility for all Americans, and accountability for the insurance industry.

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has determined that it will provide coverage to 32 million more people, or more than 94% percent of Americans, while lowering health care costs over the long term. This historic legislation will reduce the deficit by $143 billion over the next ten years, with $1.2 trillion in additional deficit reduction in the following 10 years.

Health insurance reform puts American families and small business owners - not the insurance companies - in control of their own health care. Those who already have health insurance will no longer be subjected to the insurance industry's worst practices, including extreme premium increases or having their health care coverage taken away when they get sick - just when they need it most.

Reform makes health insurance affordable for middle class and small businesses by reducing premiums and out-of-pocket costs. Millions of Americans will have access to affordable insurance choices just as big businesses have - through a new competitive health insurance market that keeps cost down. By holding insurance companies accountable, we will keep premiums down and prevent denials of care and coverage, including for pre-existing conditions.

For seniors, we improve Medicare benefits with lower prescription drug costs for those in the 'donut hole,' better chronic care, free preventive care, and nearly a decade more of solvency for Medicare.

Several key provisions begin immediately, including small business tax credits, free preventive care in all new private plans, ending the denial of coverage for children with pre-existing conditions, and allowing youth to stay on their parents' health plans until their 26th birthday.

In San Francisco, health insurance reform improves insurance coverage for those who already have health insurance while extending coverage to 31,000 uninsured San Franciscans. 22,000 San Francisco small businesses and 144,000 families will be eligible to receive tax credits in order to help keep coverage affordable. Medicare will be improved for 97,000 San Francisco seniors and 9,200 fellow San Franciscans with pre-existing conditions may no longer be blocked from obtaining coverage.

TimC said...

(part 2, max char limit reached and I don't see how to email Mr. Cline directly):

The health reform legislation that we passed also had the support of more than 350 organizations, representing Americans of every age, every background, and every part of the country, including AARP, the American Medical Association and the Catholic Health Association.

On November 7th, the House of Representatives passed the Affordable Health Care for America Act, H.R. 3962, in a bipartisan vote of 220-215. On December 24th, the Senate passed their version of health insurance reform, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, H.R. 3590, by a vote of 60 - 39.

On March 18th, House Democrats unveiled legislation to improve the Senate-passed bill, H.R. 4872. On March 21st, the House passed the Senate version of health insurance reform legislation by a vote of 219 to 212 and the Reconciliation bill to improve the Senate bill by a vote of 220 to 211. The Reconciliation bill passed the Senate with minor amendments on March 25th, by a vote of 56 -43 and passed the House of Representatives the same day by a vote of 220 - 207.

I proudly joined President Obama on March 23rd, as he signed comprehensive health reform into law, making history and progress for the American people by enacting health care for all Americans.

Thank you again for contacting me on this critical issue. I hope you will continue to communicate with me on matters of concern to you. For more information on this and other issues affecting our city and our nation, please visit my website at www.house.gov/pelosi or sign up to receive e-mail updates at www.house.gov/pelosi/IMA/subscription.html.

Sincerely,

Nancy Pelosi
Member of Congress

Please do not reply to this e-mail because this mailbox is unattended."

I particularly like the last line.

Anonymous said...

Mrs. Pelosi, thank you for your reply. However, I must inform you that no matter how much you say health care as a right and not a privelege promotes liberty, you are wrong. Your logical senses seem to have left you in a poor state. Please refer to Aristotle's seminal text regarding the matter.

We have a right to our lives, which implies our property, in order to promote our own happiness as we see fit and to reap the benefits of our decisions, positive or negative. The health care bill, medicare, medicaid and social security all remove the individual from the thought equation and replace them with a government entity. Further, the individual is now beholden to the state to support those programs or else. Sure, I could stop working and live off the system, but no self respecting adult would consider it. The other option is to withold our income 'illegally', in which case you and your kind will happily show your true colors at the point of a gun.

Your thuggery will not go unnoticed. The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time.