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John Kelly: Emotional White House Press Briefing
Saturday, June 30, 2012
A growing chorus understands.
Conservatives are scrambling to salvage something from the decision of their once-great judicial hero….
All this is a hollow hope. The outer limit on the Commerce Clause in Sebelius does not put any other federal law in jeopardy and is undermined by its ruling on the tax power…. The limits on congressional coercion in the case of Medicaid may apply only because the amount of federal funds at risk in that program’s expansion … was so great. If Congress threatens to cut off 5%-10% to force states to obey future federal mandates, will the court strike that down too? Doubtful.
Outside the court, the conservatives who thought they knew Roberts seemed baffled. “For whatever reason, and you’ll have to ask Justice Roberts, he re-wrote the statute,” said Mike Carvin, who argued against Obamacare in the case. “I’m glad he re-wrote the statute rather than the Constitution, but none of it can pass rational scrutiny.”
…the Court is tasked with protecting the Constitution and clearly failed to do so here. A key pillar upholding limited government has been kicked away. If the practical result is to energize opposition to President Obama’s reelection, it may turn out to a proverbial blessing in disguise. But there is no point in denying the damage.
… even the five votes limiting Congress under the Commerce Clause pale against the Chief Justice’s infinitely elastic and dangerous interpretation of the taxing power. Nancy Pelosi famously said we need to pass ObamaCare to find out what’s in it. It turns out we also needed John Roberts to write his appendix.
The dissent acknowledges that if an ambiguous law can be read in a way that renders it constitutional, it should be. It distinguishes, though, between construing a law charitably and rewriting it. The latter is what Chief Justice John Roberts has done. If Roberts believes that this tactic avoids damage to the Constitution because it does not stretch the Commerce Clause to justify a mandate, he is mistaken.
Armendariz stepped down as EPA’s Region 6 administrator in April after a video surfaced of him comparing his work enforcing of environmental laws to the way ancient Roman conquerors used terror to keep order.
“It is kind of like how the Romans used to conquer the villages in the Mediterranean — they’d go into a little Turkish town somewhere and they’d find the first five guys they saw and they’d crucify them. Then that town was really easy to manage for the next few years,” Armendariz said during a 2010 meeting in Texas.
Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), who released the video of the meeting, mockingly offered his congratulations to Armendariz on Friday.
“Dr. Armendariz follows numerous Obama administration officials who have come from or moved to radical left and green groups,” Inhofe said in a statement. “It's as if there is a revolving door between the White House and organizations such as the Sierra Club.”
"At least at the Sierra Club he won't get into so much trouble for telling the truth that their true agenda is to kill oil, gas and coal,” he added.
More @ The Hill
In an official policy statement the White House wrote,
“The Administration is disappointed that the Congress did not incorporate the requested TRICARE fee initiatives into either the appropriation or authorization legislation.”
In the most recent budget proposal by the Obama administration (no budget has been in effect the entire time Obama has been in office), billions of dollars worth of higher fees for members of TRICARE were proposed. It’s one of the administration’s means of cutting $500 billion from the Pentagon’s budget.
More @ Freedom Outpost
Eric Golub recommends kicking Ron Paul's supporters out of the Republican Convention:
The following words accurately describe the overwhelming majority of Ron Paul supporters.That's perfectly fine with me. Kick them out, by all means. I'll just make one request. After putting on your magic underwear and getting down at your Mitt Romney convention, don't come crying back to those Ron Paul supporters begging for their votes in late October because it is THE MOSTEST IMPORTANTEST ELECTION EVAHHHHH!!!!
"I will not vote for anybody other than Ron Paul. Mitt Romney is the same as Barack Obama. No to Obamney. Ron Paul or nobody. Maybe Gary Johnson, but not Mitt Romney under any circumstances."
Ron Paul supporters have decided to hold a Libertarian lovefest in Tampa, Florida, on the days directly preceding the GOP Convention. They have every right to do this, and Republicans should have zero objections to them expressing themselves in the equivalent of the town square. This is what democracy is all about. If they have the permits in order, let them protest. If the GOP tries to shut this event down, well that would be morally wrong.
However, their event ends on August 26th. The GOP Convention begins on August 27th. The GOP Convention is a Republican Convention. It is a Mitt Romney Convention. It is not a Ron Paul or Libertarian Convention. Therefore, it is perfectly acceptable at this point to ban Ron Paul supporters from the GOP Convention.
That's right. An outright ban on their presence is the only way to prevent the event from turning into a debacle. There is no legitimate reason at this point for them to be there.
I could not possibly care less if Obama wins or if Romney wins. Based on the last three years, I would guess that Obama would actually do less damage since the Republicans in Congress will at least put up the occasional show of resistance to his leftward moves, whereas they will support Romney's. I have to seriously question the intelligence of any conservative who intends to vote for Romney, as the only argument that made even a remote amount of sense, the Supreme Court Appointment argument, has been permanently destroyed by Chief Justice Roberts.
By all means, the Republicans should kick out the libertarians, the constitutionalists, the nationalists, and the fiscally sane. I think it would be fantastic. It's long past time they joined a party genuinely devoted to freedom, the principles of the Founding Fathers, and the American national interest anyhow.
But what is it with neocons and their obsession with playing ideological police and kicking people out of organizations, movements, and political parties? Buckley did it, Lowry did it, and here this Golub is calling for it. It is increasingly apparent that permitting people who have ideologically "seen the light" at some point in their lives to assume positions of influence in their new party is a tremendously bad idea. If you were ever a Democrat, or worse, a Trotskyite or Socialist, that's great if you eventually came to your senses and moved rightward. But you should not be permitted any leadership position or provided a voice in the right-wing media. After all, why on Earth should anyone else on the Right, who was never dumb enough to fall for any left-wing nonsense in the first place, pay your belatedly sane opinion any attention whatsoever?
At gas station in east Texas yesterday:
Clerk was older guy (50s), owner of the station.
clerk: What can I do for ya?
ME (putting my drink and candy bar on counter and fishing out FRNs): Well, you can start by getting me a new Supreme Court.
clerk: Better yet we oughta just pack the capitol to Austin and to hell with those bastards in DC. We'd do a lot better on our own not even being part of the United States. All they do is bring us down. Texas oughta just be our own republic.
This was a guy who is a long time local business owner, friends with all the local politicians, upstanding community member, etc.
Oh, next guy waiting in line heard conversation and threw in a 'hell yeah, screw them bastards, we oughta be independent!'
Kind of heartwarming.
Editor and Publisher John H. WalkerTARBORO — Did you hear about the Boston area teacher who, while addressing a graduating class, told them there was nothing special about them?
The furor over his hurting the feelings of little Susie and Billy by telling them the truth was amazing, but was buried under the avalanche of support for his words from around the world.
What he said was true, just as it was in whatever year you graduated and just as it was for the Class of 1968 of Greenville (Miss.) High School.
But over the years, we’ve progressed as a nation to where we give feel good awards, ribbons for participation and jobs to persons who can’t even fill out a job application or make correct change at a drive-thru when the cash register tells you how much to give to the customer.
I guess it could be that even though the register tells you to give the customer a certain amount of change, you’re still required to be able to count coins to get to that point.
As we’ve progressed through a recently completed search for a reporter, we even had one would-be candidate ask what a resume was — and that was after sending an email professing all of their strengths!
Yes, little Billy and little Susie are special to their parents and family, just like most of us — but they face what is perhaps the longest row to hoe than anyone ever before them other than during the Great Depression.
Times are tough — despite the fact the President seems to think the “private sector is doing fine” — and there are college graduates from two years ago still looking for employment.
One of the old standards, a summer job for teens, is a rarity these days and, in fact, there have been instances where an 18-year-old was competing with a 50-year-old for the same minimum wage jobs.
No, there’s nothing special about this year’s class of graduating seniors. However, for those who survive and thrive, there may well be.
Contrary to popular opinion, Republicans don’t need a 60-vote majority to ram through an Obamacare repeal – as Ken Klukowski pointed out yesterday, “The only way to stop Obamacare now is with a one-page repeal bill that must be passed by the House and Senate. Because it would reduce the deficit you can pass it with 51 votes as a reconciliation bill in the Senate; you don’t need 60 votes.”
Republicans currently have 47 seats in the Senate. They only have 10 Senate seats up for re-election, as opposed to Democrats’ 23. Essentially, Republicans need to shift three seats from the Democrats and hold their own in order to win repeal, since the VP is the tiebreaker – although that assumes homogenous Senate Republican support for repeal.
Republicans essentially have four vulnerable seats; Democrats have up to ten. The question is how the Obamacare decision will play into these races – if Obamacare is unpopular in these states, that will certainly cut in Republicans’ favor. One thing is clear: swing-state voters do not like Obamacare. First, the Republican toss-up races:
More @ Breitbart
Yes, alas, it is true. Oh, I am a poor sinner, and have offended against the Lord, and lived in the dark night of racism, and it presses hard upon my soul. Oh, how it does. But now, having seen the light of goodness, I repent and will own like a man to my transgressions. Yes, I will say it here, before God and man:
I have believed that things should be done without regard to race, creed, color, sex, or national origin.
The shame, the shame.
I will make a clean breast of yet more. I have been against all discrimination by race or sex, against affirmative action, racial set-asides, special treatment for women, quotas, and favoritism by the government and the media. Oh the guilt I feel! I have been a beast, worse even than the Grand Flagon of the Invisible Umpire of the Ku Klux Klan.
There is still more. I have read, and believed, and steeped myself in the pernicious theories of known racists, such as Martin Luther King, who once said openly, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
Yes, yes, I too thought this and—oh, woe—was even proud of thinking it. I believed that behavior counted, not race—tthat if a mob of teenagers gang-robbed a convenience store, they should be horse-whipped, regardless of their race. I thought they should be judged by the content of their characters. I could not see the injustice of equal justice. I did not yet grasp that being against racism was proof positive of racism.
Understanding was not yet upon me. I thought before my salvation that people should take responsibility for their actions. If jack-booted Nazis beat a black unconscious because of, well, pretty much anything, I figured the newspapers should publish their names and photographs, and the courts should give them a minimum of thirty years, no parole, in which to ponder the wisdom of doing it again. Crimes should not be hidden, I believed, nor the criminals protected, according to race.Or anything else. The same laws for everyone, I told myself. Oh, fool that I was.
I was wrong. I now see that a belief in equal treatment under the law is the foulest form of racism. It discriminates unfairly against criminals. All I can say in defense of myself is that other racists, such as Thomas Sowell, led me into these moral swamps.
More @ Fred's
“I expect to die in bed, my successor will die in prison, and his successor will die a martyr in the public square.”
America’s Catholic Bishops rejected the Supreme Court’s ruling that Obamacare is constitutional, saying the court did not resolve the question of the law’s violation of religious rights.
The bishops earlier in June led 43 Catholic institutions to file lawsuits against the Obama Administration, which under Obamacare is forcing Catholic and other religious institutions to provide health insurance to employees that covers contraceptives, sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs against the Church’s moral teachings.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius — a Catholic who has been ordered by her archbishop not to take Communion until she repents of her pro-abortion stance and goes to confession — has ordered most employers to begin complying with the order on Aug. 1. In a nod to the churches, and probably a bid to help Obama’s re-election chances among Catholics, Sebelius has agreed to give religious nonprofits an additional year to comply.
On the archbishops’ website, they list several reasons they oppose the Affordable Care Act:
- ACA allows use of federal funds to pay for elective abortions and for plans that cover such abortions, contradicting longstanding federal policy.
- The Act fails to include necessary language to provide essential conscience protection, both within and beyond the abortion context. … The lack of statutory conscience protections applicable to ACA’s new mandates has been illustrated in dramatic fashion by HHS’s “preventive services” mandate, which forces religious and other employers to cover sterilization and contraception, including abortifacient drugs.
- ACA fails to treat immigrant workers and their families fairly. ACA leaves them worse off by not allowing them to purchase health coverage in the new exchanges created under the law, even if they use their own money. This undermines the Act’s stated goal of promoting access to basic life-affirming health care for everyone, especially for those most in need.
In their unanimous declaration against the HHS mandate, the bishops said that Obamacare falsely defines institutions such as schools, hospitals and charities as not religious, and it violates the personal civil rights of individual Catholics and members of other denominations and religions that share the same moral convictions.
More @ Godfather Politics
So—why am I even THINKING about secession today? Well, as an American who was born free and just days ago was enslaved by—and to—the federal government, secession is beginning to appear as a viable alternative to slavery. You can bet, if this lowly commentator is thinking it, a whole lot of Americans are beginning to consider whether it is worth a shot—to preserve, at least, SOME freedom from the state.
INDIANAPOLIS | Indiana plans to bill the federal government $130,953,979, the estimated cost of state services used by illegal immigrants since July 1, 2011.
A 2011 law, sponsored by state Sen. Mike Delph, R-Carmel, requires state budget officials to determine how much Indiana spends annually to support illegal immigrants.
The estimate includes $111 million for education, $8 million for health care and $12 million for prisons.
"The federal government is to blame for not controlling our borders," Delph said. "I am requesting Congress to pay back what is owed to us, the hard-working, law-abiding, legal residents of the state of Indiana."
Many more @ Lord K's Garage
An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"
"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern."
—Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006.
An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko.
More @ The CATO Institute
Sixty-eight years ago today, Gen. Dwight Eisenhower gave the final order for the allied invasion of Normandy. It was the eve of D-Day.
Among the Americans who fought to liberate France in the months ahead was 1st Lt. Billie Harris. CBS News went "On the Road," to tell Harris' story -- part mystery, part romance.
Peggy Harris of Vernon, Tex. never got a knock at the door, never got a telegram, never got anything definitive explaining what happened to her husband Billie during World War II. And so, in the absence of answers, she has remained dutiful to this day.
"Billie was married to me all of his life, and I choose to be married to him all of my life," Harris said.
Peggy and Billie got married just six weeks before he got shipped off to war. A fighter pilot -- his last mission was July 17, 1944 over Nazi-occupied northern France. He never returned from that mission.At first Billie he was reported as missing. Then he was reported as alive and coming home. Then Peggy got a letter saying actually he'd been killed and buried at one cemetery -- then another letter saying he was buried at a different cemetery. Then she was told maybe those aren't his remains at all.
I miss Charles Kuralt
As I often do when a significant story pops, I stated my position on the SCOTUS decision, then I looked inward to the III to see where we were as a group.
On this blog and elsewhere in our Community many, many folks were outraged by the decision.
The overwhelming majority of those who blog and comment in our Community take the position that voting will not make a difference, government has failed, the republic is dead, the Constitution either rendered impotent by our current politics or impotent by some grand design.
So, why the passion in the Community? Why the heat? One who is truly separated from a thing will rarely react with passion, especially if you look at the SCOTUS action as do I: It is simply one more in our long train of abuses.
I gave Roberts props for what I consider to be slick political manuevers that will have an impact for many years to come...if we have years to come. But intellectually I know that no matter what SCOTUS did, nothing would change. No decision on Thursday could have staved off our imminent Implosion. No decision would make anyone begin to respect the Constitutional boundaries of power. I still think if SCOTUS had killed ObamaCare outright, the Obama Administration was fully prepared to ignore the Court and execute the law. I can hear the President now: How many divisions does Roberts have? He has taken his decision, now let's see him enforce it.
But you folks who reacted with such intensity revealed something to me that I do find genuinely heartening: Most of you are still fond of the Constitution and the ideal that it offers. You may say differently at times. You may deny it.
But your emotion reveals that you want the Constitution to be respected, and you find those who ignore it, injure it, scoff at it, to be repugnant.
I like that.
A man does not get jealous when an ex-girlfriend gets a new boyfriend, if he is truly over her.
You're not over the Constitution.