Anticipated the Reasoning by the Court
Tibor R. Machan
A few weeks ago I wrote in one of my columns as follows:
“…[T]he discussion of President Obama’s federal policy requiring that everyone obtain health insurance has frequently focused on the fact that either an employer or individual would be forced to obtain private health insurance instead of, as Wikipedia points it out, ‘or in addition to the institution of a national health service of insurance’. And many have suggested that this is a very unusual measure since it mandates specific performance from citizens, contrary to the legal tradition of the country. One may be forced to give up property but never to carry out a task, something that is reminiscent of slavery or involuntary servitude and thus directly in conflict with the idea of a free society….”
The court ruled in favor of Mr. Obama’s individual mandate on June 28, 2012, by rejecting the idea that it amounted to forcing citizens to purchase something they don’t choose to purchase and held, instead, that it is indeed a federal requirement “to give up property” (or to tax the citizens) which the federal government may impose to its heart’s content.
It is just this power by government that needs now to be challenged since it extend the feudal legacy of extorting people’s resources. The extortion goes as follows: “You get to live in this supposedly free country only if you pay government–previously the monarch–funds demanded from you!” This amounts to the constitutional power to tax!
It should not be, of course, since it is a betrayal of the valid, universal principle of the Declaration of Independence and even the Bill of Rights, the right to private property, the right to pursue one’s happiness with one’s work and wealth. But then remember the constitution also made slavery legal and it remained so until it was finally amended. The 13th Amendment did this when it stated “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction. Section 2 says: Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.” But this came later! So originally American law tolerated slavery, involuntary servitude.
Well, we now see that it still does. If your resources, property, may be confiscated by politicians then one’s life is not one’s own. The first natural right, namely, to life, is still contradicted in American federal law as it has been from the start.
The schizophrenia between the Declaration, which stated the most fundamental principles on which the country was supposed to have been founded, and the U. S. Constitution, the legal order by which the country was supposed to be governed, remains fully intact. This is the part of the revolution that needs to be completed, namely, the abolition of taxation. The 13th Amendment abolished serfdom, another central element of the old regime; now another needs to be, one that will abolish the forcible taking of one’s property via the feudal power of taxation.
So here is a wonderful opportunity for the current crop of Republicans, with Mitt Romney leading them in the next few months, to mount a bona fide, no holds barred revolution that will complete the first one. Ron Paul might have been counted upon to lead it but one may doubt that Mitt Romney is going to go there. Too many leaders of and people within the Republican Party remain statists who believe that the government rules the people instead of serving them.
I have argued for decades that what is now required is a truly just approach to funding law maintenance and enforcement. Some way other than taxing citizens must be found and implemented to fund the system that protects individual rights, a way that doesn’t also violate those rights. The contract fee approach would work, I am sure, provided it is firmly combined with a policy of strictly limited government, one that sticks to the task assigned it in the Declaration of Independence where we learn that government is instituted to protect our rights, not to run our lives.