Feeling misled? You certainly should. Congress created a law so complex that it occupies between 2,400 and 2,800 pages depending on who says what, almost all of them unread by the people who voted for it. President Obama and his Democratic colleagues told you many things about the law – most of which were either mischaracterizations or outright lies. What Chief Justice John Roberts did was tell the truth, and now we can move forward.
This is all on Chief Justice Roberts. The four liberals who concurred with him don’t believe that the individual mandate is a tax. They firmly believed that the government had the right under the commerce clause to expand the power of the federal government in a sweeping manner. They inherently believe in these matters that the government has few limitations. They were so convinced of that they appeared to be willing to emasculate the commerce clause to expand the federal government’s grip over 18% of our economy. The four signed on to what Roberts wrote and sacrificed the future of their souls for achieving their goals today. But the question remains did they sacrifice anything?
Roberts did do two major things in his opinion. First, he stated the court has limited powers to control the legislative branch. In effect, he told Americans that “You elected these people, they are your representatives, and you have to live with their actions.” Second, he put a stop to the damnable lies about taxes. Politicians lie all the time about the manner in which they extract increasing amounts from your pocket, usually calling them fees, dues, excise fees, duties, levies, or something else. Roberts just confirmed what we all know: if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck – it is a duck. Remember this penalty -- which is estimated to hit four million Americans -- is to be collected by the 20,000 new IRS agents. Roberts may have done it for contrived reasons, but elected officials can never again claim that additional money going to government is anything other than a tax.
Even the best and brightest are still duped by the verbiage. Charles Krauthammer said that he’s open to fines, but not taxes. What he’s missing is that fines are now much more than mere penalties; a parking ticket that used to cost $20 is now $50 – and is used to balance the city budget. A “fine” levied against a corporation by the SEC doesn’t go to the aggrieved stockholders, but to the coffers of the federal government; what was once $500,000 has become $5,000,000. States love delinquent taxpayers because they rake in huge fines that get increased with every budget shortfall. Fines are nothing more than a duck not called a duck.