Flashpoint: U.S. Supreme Court


20 years ago, I recall predicting that if the US ever had a political crisis that threatened the integrity of the nation, it would begin at the Supreme Court.  The Constitution devoted only a small portion of the overall document in defining the judicial branch. Only three paragraphs (Article Three) out of roughly a half a dozen pages specifically cover the duties and function of the Court. I reasoned that this lack of detail would allow the Supreme Court to alter and enhance its powers. The Founders might have been astonished to find the extent to which the Judicial Branch has evolved over 200 years.

The recent SCOTUS decision on Obamacare is stark evidence that the judicial branch has pushed the envelope toward a national crisis. While I’m not yet convinced that we’re witnessing the proverbial straw that breaks Uncle Sam’s back, we could very well be watching a preview of coming attractions.

I can envision a flashpoint scenario that begins with a Supreme Court decision of a magnitude so outrageous that a number of states choose to defy it. Should the situation remain unresolved, government entities on both a federal and state level will be compelled to consider extraordinary and unprecedented measures. Political factions will join the conflict, and citizens will begin to choose sides— in short, civil war.

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3 thoughts on “Flashpoint: U.S. Supreme Court

  1. I tend to agree. We are so polarized as a country that it could easily happen. The “war” would begin with authorities trying to enforce bad law . . . . and in the case of Obamacare, millions of people will be forced to sell their homes or go without insurance because they cannot afford the one-size-fits-all plans, and millions will be asked to sell their souls (abortion surcharges in the bill, etc.), not to mention the many other losses of freedom the bill entails .. . . there will be revolts, protests, civil disobedience, and at times, street violence . . . and that can escalate. One almost senses that is precisely what Obama wants.

  2. Taxpaying voters need to demand that Justice Roberts explains why he referenced the Gibbons v. Ogden case in the Obamacare opinion, seemingly ignoring two statements in the Gibbons opinion which indicate that his tax argument doesn’t hold water.

    Below are the two statements from Gibbons.  Note that the first statement clarifies, in one sentence, that not only does Congress not have the power to address public healthcare issues, healthcare being a 10th Amendment protected state power, but also that Congress has no power to interfere with intrastate commerce; FDR’s activist justices got the Commerce Clause wrong in Wickard v. Filburn.

    “State inspection laws, health laws, and laws for regulating the internal commerce of a State, and those which respect turnpike roads, ferries, &c. are not within the power granted to Congress.”  –Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824.

    “Congress is not empowered to tax for those purposes which are within the exclusive province of the States.” –Chief Justice Marshall, Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824.

    Note that since Congress has no power to make public healthcare-related laws, Congress cannot make healthcare-related penalty laws, imo, any more than it can make healthcare-related tax laws.

    Sadly, the corrupt federal government’s power grab concerning Obamacare is delaying states whose legal majority voters would approve their state establishing a healthcare program, Massachusetts’ RomneyCare for example, from doing so.

  3. Thanks for that analysis. I do not have much of a legal mind, but I follow your argument. That first statement of Gibbons is particularly eye-opening, and I did not know that Gibbons vs, Ogden was a case that Roberts used! Wow! I do note, as a Southerner, that the case was prior to the Civil War. Down here, we often consider the Constitution to have died in 1865, and like to point out that the great symbol of federal power, the Capitol dome, was completed during those years. . But, that is for another day. If this law stands, God forbid, it will be interesting, indeed, to see how Massachusetts reacts to Obamacare. All I know is that my own life will suffer. I will be unable to obtain insurance for reasons of both cost and conscience, and will be paying a tax-penalty although receiving no benefit from it, that I will also lose my customary medical deductions at tax time, since the threshold is being raised, and that the stock I own in medical device companies will decline in value, since they are being taxed. No taxes on the middle class? HA! What a joke! I am a poorly paid schoolteacher in a private school, one who happens to be a heart patient.

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