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Tea Party is Winning

Races for the Senate, U.S. House, etc. and other issues of national importance.

Tea Party is Winning

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jun 29, 2012 9:55 am

Lost in the noise of the liberal win yesterday at the Supreme Court was the severity of the dissent written by the four conservative justices. I didn't read it, but law professor Larence Tribe (who taught both Obama and Roberts) pointed out that the conservatives not only rejected Obamacare on Commerce Clause limiting grounds, they also want to roll-back the interpretation of the taxing authority of the federal gov.

Friends, the entire New Deal and 1960's advancements (or tragedies, depending on your point of view) are built upon the taxing authority of the Fed. The conservative dissent yesterday invalidated Social Security, medicare, medicaid, virtually the entire federal safety net.

Our Supreme Court now has 4½ Tea Party advocates. This is a stunning and vulnerable point we've arrived at.

Legislatively, the Paul Ryan budget boldly dismantles the safety net. The Republican Party has embraced this vision. Forget the 50 million or so that are currently on the edge, more people will fall into poverty under the Ryan/Tea Party agenda. Looking at the big picture, the Tea Party has made incredible progress, they are winning.

I feel like a televangelist. Brothers and sisters, the devil is at your doorstep. Reach deep into your pockets and donate to the OBama campaign. Or at least get somebody else to vote. Despite the encouraging news yesterday, the underlying realities are truly perilous. The fall election will tip the balance one way or the other.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby johnfajardohenry » Fri Jun 29, 2012 1:32 pm

I saw the thread title and thought "Yeah!, sounds good to me"

You see Huckleby, we might not agree some things but we do agree on this. The tea party is winning.

I forget now where I saw it, perhaps Ace's blog, but there was a list of the demmies who made the Holder contempt charge a bipartisan vote. The list showed that most of them had strong Tea Party challengers nipping at their heels. Yippee! Even if the challengers don't win this time, it may put some fear of God into these folks.

Lots of other signs as well. Such as the number of pols who find they need to wash their hair the week of the Demmie convention. Will there be anyone there above the level of city councilperson?

Or Romney's moneybomb yesterday. I think he raised $3.4mm or so.

I think the ruling yesterday was ultimately a great thing for the US. Not least of all because it has gotten the Tea Party fired up even more than they were.

So yeah, the Tea Party is winning. We agree on that even if we may not agree that it is a good thing.

Huckleby wrote:Friends, the entire New Deal and 1960's advancements (or tragedies, depending on your point of view) are built upon the taxing authority of the Fed. The conservative dissent yesterday invalidated Social Security, medicare, medicaid, virtually the entire federal safety net.


When you say "Fed" do you mean the Federal Reserve Board? the Federal reserve Banks? or the Federal Govt?

I am guessing the last as the first 2 have nothing to do with taxes. You should be a bit more clear in the future, though.

Go read the link at the SS website that I posted in the Health Care thread. It tells how Justice Harlan Stone advised Sec Labor Frances Perkins (off the record and probably improperly) that the only way to structure SS so it would not be struck down was to do it explicitly as a tax. Payments out are like any other welfare payment so there was no question there.

So nothing changed there. The Supremes went with the example of 1934. They said it was a "tax" and Congress has more or less unlimited power to tax. They do not have the power to impose any kind of insurance.

So I don't understand why you have your knickers in a twist over this. It simply reaffirms existing practice.

Enjoy the Obamatax while you can. Statists may have won the battle but I think yesterday they lost the war. I think that by making people aware that Congress does have unlimited taxing power (and always has) they will also inspire people to insist that Congress do something about it. Perhaps require a supermajority (75%+) for any new or increased taxes.

I hope so, anyway.

John Henry

[1436 edited to correct a typo]
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby johnfajardohenry » Fri Jun 29, 2012 1:43 pm

johnfajardohenry wrote:
Enjoy the Obamatax while you can. Statists may have won the battle but I think yesterday they lost the war. I think that by making people aware that Congress does have unlimited taxing power (and always has) they will also inspire people to insist that Congress do something about it. Perhaps require a supermajority (75%+) for any new or increased taxes.


And maybe a submajority, say 25% to keep it symmetrical, to cut or eliminate any taxes.

Most of what federal taxes go to pay for is state and local stuff anyway. Let the states tax their own people for the things they want.

As we discussed in another thread, there is no way the people in Texas should be paying for a bicycle path in Oregon or the people in Alabama for trains in California.

It seems very undemocratic to me.

John Henry


John Henry
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jun 29, 2012 1:47 pm

johnfajardohenry wrote: So nothing changed there. The Supremes went with the example of 1934. They said it was a "tax" and Congress has more or less unlimited power to tax. They do not have the power to impose any kind of insurance.

So I don't understand why you have your knickers in a twist over this. It simply reaffirms existing practice.

I'm refering to the dissenters, not what the majority did.
A bare majority was mustered to defend Obamacare even as a tax. The dissenters, in particular Kennedy, wanted to throw it out in its entirety even if the mandate was interpreted as a tax. The conservatives are poised to roll back federal power under the tax & spend clause.

If one more conservative supreme justice is added by Romney, it's katy bar the door. It's entirely possible that the Supreme Court is prepared to join the Tea Party in drastically rolling back social legislation. I'm not saying they will invalidate the safety net programs outright, but they will allow challenges to weaken social security, et. al. Oh ya, and social security really is a tax, even if it started as a insurance program.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby johnfajardohenry » Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:30 pm

Huckleby wrote:
johnfajardohenry wrote:Oh ya, and social security really is a tax, even if it started as a insurance program.


See, we agree on something else. If this keeps up, Hell is going to freeze over.

Seriously, SS was never an insurance program. FDR wanted it to be an insurance program but Stone told him, via Perkins, that this would be struck down.

SS, from the day it was initially proposed in Congress, has always been a technically unconnected tax and welfare payment.

One of the reasons I hope I am able to stay off it when I turn 65 the end of the year. Never been on welfare, never want to go on the welfare. We'll see. I have been told, I think wrongly but the guy is a lawyer, that I cannot legally refuse to accept SS once I hit 70.

I sure can try, though.

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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby johnfajardohenry » Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:34 pm

Huckleby wrote:
johnfajardohenry wrote:
I'm refering to the dissenters, not what the majority did.
A bare majority was mustered to defend Obamacare even as a tax.


I have not read the opinions yet. I have them on my Kindle and perhaps this weekend I'll get the chance.

My understanding, which may well be wrong, is that the dissenters said that since Congress did not call it a tax, the Supremes could not could not call it a tax either.

Since it is not a tax, in their view, it is unconstitutional.

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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Henry Vilas » Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:49 pm

The majority opinion specifically said that using the Commerce Clause as a rationale for the law is unconstitutional, because those presently uninsured are not partaking in the commerce (of health insurance). Neither were black Americans who were refused service during Jim Crow. I guess they would also hold much of civil rights legislation as unconstitutional, since they were specifically based on the Commerce Clause. Would a case challenging the various civil rights acts be unheld or whould they even pass certiorari?
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:29 pm

johnfajardohenry wrote: My understanding, which may well be wrong, is that the dissenters said that since Congress did not call it a tax, the Supremes could not could not call it a tax either.

Since it is not a tax, in their view, it is unconstitutional.

I didn't read it, I'm just echoing the view of Laurence Tribe, a constitutional law professor at Harvard. It was his opinion that the four conservatives were prepared to dismiss Obamacare even if it were done within tax authority.

What the Tea Party has accomplished in 4 years really is quite impressive. I suppose if Romney & Republican majorities are elected in fall, a real possibility, the left will unify and respond with their own firestorm, because the consequences will be severe.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:35 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:... because those presently uninsured are not partaking in the commerce (of health insurance). Neither were black Americans who were refused service during Jim Crow.
Sweet Jesus.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby jman111 » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:39 pm

johnfajardohenry wrote:
Huckleby wrote:I'm refering to the dissenters, not what the majority did.
A bare majority was mustered to defend Obamacare even as a tax.


I have not read the opinions yet. I have them on my Kindle and perhaps this weekend I'll get the chance.

My understanding, which may well be wrong, is that the dissenters said that since Congress did not call it a tax, the Supremes could not could not call it a tax either.

Since it is not a tax, in their view, it is unconstitutional.

John Henry

I believe your understanding of the dissent is correct:
It is important to bear this in mind in evaluating the tax argument of the Government and of those who support it: The issue is not whether Congress had the power to frame the minimum-coverage provision as a tax, but whether it did so.


(edited to fix quote attribution)
Last edited by jman111 on Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:39 pm

the argument that the uninsured are participating in commerce is that they are implicitly recieving services via the charitable policy of hospitals & society, imposing cost burdens on all.

I get the argument that using the commerce clause is extension beyond past precedent, though, since a purchase is compelled. Yet, that seems like reasonable extenstion, limited to health care because of its unique circumstances.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Henry Vilas » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:40 pm

Artie, I guess you have no idea how the U.S. Supreme Court (the final arbiter of our Constitution) has interpreted the Commerce Clause in the past.

Is JC sugary sweet or just cloying so?
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Huckleby » Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:49 pm

I know that a survey was done of legal scholars, and 80% said that Obamacare was constitutional, within the scope of past rulings on Commerce Clause.

OK. But that leaves 20% who disagree. And having heard their arguments, well, I think they have a plausible point of view that Obamacare mandate is new and different. That's all it takes, a plausible argument, if it appeals to the sensibilities of the court. There really is no right or wrong answer on this one.

So that brings us to Scalia's broccolli argument. I say health care is unique, there is the implicit participation not present with broccolli. But none of the conservatives, including Roberts, weighed that distinction heavily.
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby ArturoBandini » Fri Jun 29, 2012 4:19 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:Artie, I guess you have no idea how the U.S. Supreme Court (the final arbiter of our Constitution) has interpreted the Commerce Clause in the past.

They've interpreted it liberally. I'm aware of this.

My reaction was more due to your nauseating comparison of Jim Crow laws with the absence of a mandate to purchase health insurance. Do you really think that is an appropriate parallel to draw?
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Re: Tea Party is Winning

Postby Henry Vilas » Fri Jun 29, 2012 4:27 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:
Henry Vilas wrote:Artie, I guess you have no idea how the U.S. Supreme Court (the final arbiter of our Constitution) has interpreted the Commerce Clause in the past.

They've interpreted it liberally. I'm aware of this.

And you interpret it libertarianly. Federal civil rights laws based on the Commerce clause infringe on economic liberty. So say Ron Paul.
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