Byron York, in a series of tweets, reminds us of a George Will piece from May in which the columnist examined the not-so-subtle, thug-like liberal pressure applied to Chief Justice Roberts. Will ended with a prediction that was 100% wrong:
Such clumsy attempts to bend the chief justice are apt to reveal his spine of steel.But clumsy and thuggish can be very effective and sure did the trick this time, causing Wobbles Roberts to cave weakly, make a terrible decision, and try vainly to cover it with incoherent reasoning. Along those lines, Victor Davis Hanson: Justice Roberts -- Tragic Figure:
Roberts, who wanted to cement his reputation as a sober and judicious jurist, through his Hamlet-like deliberations ended up seeming incoherent, tentative, and unsure of himself. And if it’s true that rumors of Roberts reconsidering his vote swirled in Washington prior to the final outcome, and that such perceptions of hesitation prompted renewed venom and pressure — from not just the media, but from those such as Senator Leahy (who had voted to confirm Roberts) on the floors of Congress, and the president himself (who attacked the Court even earlier in his State of the Union address) — then the Court comes off as far more suspect after the opinion than before. Everything Roberts wished to prevent he ensured.And his personal tragic fall has grave national implications. Note to our minders: Please add uncommon courage to the list of necessary qualities in a Supreme Court nominee. (Read the rest.)
Michael Walsh, in Roberts v. Roberts, goes through the shameful history of Obamacare's passage and takes a look at the tax, penalty, or [ahem] "shared responsibility payment" question:
The “payment” was not designed to generate revenue, but to compel people to comply with the mandate. If the law works as intended, no one will make any “shared responsibility payments” at all, but rather purchase the mandated insurance. The “tax” in that case will raise no revenue, but it will have achieved its goal: enforcement of the mandate. That is the hallmark of a penalty, not a “tax.” In his colloquy with the solicitor general, Chief Justice Roberts skillfully established that point.It's a penalty, folks. It may be politically advantageous for us to call it a tax, but we know it isn't, right?
So the law as it stands now is that Congress cannot make us eat broccoli, but can mandate everyone do so and impose a failure-to-eat-broccoli tax on anyone not complying with the mandate. Congress can apparently mandate anything, as long as it accompanies the mandate with a failure-to-do-it tax that need not be called a tax.
PS: Do not miss this Chip Bok cartoon.
Most recent posts here. Follow us on Twitter here. Amazon store here.