In my inbox: “Judge Roberts’ decision forces Americans to stand on their own two feet — and that’s a good thing”
I’m not going to critique the whole thing – you’re free to do so, just as you’re free to agree with the arguments on offer — though I will say generally that what I want in a SCOTUS Justice is not a new Daddy or Mommy. I don’t need life lessons. I don’t want someone who crusades for “social justice.” I don’t need tough love. I don’t need — and we shouldn’t have — philosopher kings doling out correctives to the masses who are in essence free to self-govern just so long as they’re reaching the proper conclusions.
Having said that, let me just briefly respond to one assertion made early in the piece. Writes Bookworm:
Having had more than 24 hours to come to terms with the decision, I’m beginning to think that there may indeed be a pony (or several ponies) hiding in there somewhere. Moreover, I’m also realizing that Roberts, despite the apparent wackiness of his decision, stayed true to his constitutional roots.
No. An originalist doesn’t find a tax in what he knows to be a penalty just because “one can read it as a tax.” For one to read it as a tax when one knows it was never intended as a tax and that it wasn’t voted on as a tax is for one to re-write it as a tax himself — that is, to engage in the kind of judicial activism that is antithetical to the methods of interpretation originalism depends upon.
So John Roberts didn’t stay true to his constitutionalist roots in that fundamental, foundational respect, and the methodology he used in his “reasoning” — in addition to showing that he reasoned backward from the conclusion he wanted to reach — is linguistically incoherent and inherently tyrannical.
That’s it. No ponies. Just more unicorns.