Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Don't get Cocky

If you've been watching anything this week, you've been watching the arguments in the Supreme Court over the future of Obamacare. The arguments have been described both as a train wreck and a plane wreck for the government, with lots of pundits thinking that the Court might overturn all or part of the law. Other pundits are concerned that it will be decided in a 5-4 split, one way or the other.

Lets not get cocky. There is more at issue here than the media would like to represent and the Justices are a more intellectual group than many of us realize, even if in the final analysis they're just damned lawyers. Many have said that the Court is divided into the liberal wing of Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan, and Sotomayor, balanced by the conservatives Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito. Kennedy is the supposed swing vote.

At issue is the question of how far the government can go to influence our actions, to the point of making us buy a product, whether it be broccoli or insurance. I might remind my gentle readers that as I understand classical liberalism, they were very much in favor of individual liberty.

Trying to guess what the Supremes will do is an exercise in futility. I'm not much of a Court watcher, but I wouldn't be surprised if we see on or more of the Justices "jump the fence", one way or the other. This is an interesting case and the outcome is far from assured. In the final analysis, though, the Justices are just nine damned lawyers.

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