Hobby and a Lobby of Glass Houses

By Sam Stone

The liberal angst over the recent Supreme Court decision in favor of Hobby Lobby and other Christian-owned family businesses is rapidly spinning out of control. Critics have accused Hobby Lobby and the Supreme Court of everything short of genocide. Comedian and MSNBC contributor John Fugelsang tweeted that the Hobby Lobby ruling “proves once again that Scalia Law is a lot like Sharia Law”, explicitly comparing the atrocities committed in the name of radical Islam to not requiring someone else to pay for the morning-after pill. That’s ridiculous.

It’s ridiculous in light of what Hobby Lobby really is: one of the best examples of corporate humanity and compassion in this country. It’s even more ridiculous when you compare Hobby Lobby to, for example, Staples – a similar retail business run by founder and CEO Tom Stemberg, who was a significant contributor to President Obama’s campaigns.

Hobby Lobby pays a starting wage of $9.50 per hour for part time employees. Full time employees start at $14 an hour. All employees are eligible to enroll in the company-sponsored health care plan (which covers 16 types of birth control). All employees have Sundays off.

Staples employees often start at whatever minimum wage their local jurisdiction has set. Their average wage for associates is $8.55 an hour. Most associates do not qualify for company-sponsored benefits. Staples is open 7 days a week.

And yet, the left is basically claiming that because Hobby Lobby will only pay for 16 of 20 FDA-approved birth control types, they are the Taliban and the Green family are members of ISIS. What on earth does that make Tom Stemberg and Staples? A Staples employee who doesn’t have company health insurance isn’t getting their morning-after pills paid for by the company, either. Or condoms. Or the pill. Or…you get the picture.

I have a ton of liberal friends and family members who pooh-pooh the idea of a War on Christianity. Frankly, I always have as well. The reaction of liberals and their media allies to the Hobby Lobby case is changing my mind. The mainstream media doesn’t so much as bat an eyelash at the Staples of the world, so long as the plutocrats in charge are willing to keep lining the pockets of liberal candidates (and their own networks). But Christian business owners who pay their employees a living wage and provide healthcare benefits are monsters because they won’t pay for a few specific abortifacients?

Nothing in the Supreme Court ruling or Hobby Lobby’s employee handbook prevents employees from going out and purchasing the morning-after pill for themselves. But, apparently, none of this matters so long as liberals can use the ruling to perpetuate a mythological conservative “war on women” that exists mostly in the minds of the Sandra Fluke’s of the world. Perhaps, instead, they should take a look at their own glass houses.

State Representative Steve Montenegro’s statement on today’s Supreme Court decision re: Arizona’s Prop 200 and Voter Registration

Montenegro-Logo---SOS2

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 17th, 2013

PHOENIX – “It is common sense that since you must be a citizen to vote, you should be required to show proof of citizenship before you register.  Prop 200 was a common-sense solution to this problem and I commend Attorney General Tom Horne for defending the law.

I am troubled by Justice Scalia’s assertion that Arizona still has ways of getting the job done by asking permission from the Elections Assistance Commission.  He pointed out that in recent years Louisiana requested and was granted such permission.  Yet today, that commission has no members, making it impossible for Arizona to seek such relief.
 Should the commission ever regain voting members, Arizona’s Secretary of State should move to immediately secure such permission.

In the meantime I will continue to advocate for protecting the integrity of our election system, from voter registration to ballot handling to vote tabulating.  Arizona’s voters, like voters everywhere, deserve fair, honest, and transparent elections.”

# # #

SCOTUS 2012 — How Our National “Circuit Breakers” Have Failed Us

After reading John Roberts’ opinion in the PPACA (Obamacare) decision and the Conservative pundits’ articles thanking him for the wakeup call, I decided to hold a meeting with my family and make the following announcement:

It’s up to us as individuals to make sure that we use electricity responsibly in this house.  The whole house could burn down if we aren’t careful.  Our circuit breakers are no substitute for diligence.

Therefore – 

As a wake-up call, I am going to do our family a “favor” by removing the circuit breakers from our electrical panel, wiring the circuits straight through without any protection at all.  Now it’s up to us alone to be diligent.

Absurd?  You bet it is.  But that’s the metaphor I offer to illustrate the absurdity of the message that Chief Justice Roberts sent us on June 28.

Our Constitution was created by the Founders to limit the power of government over its citizenry.  The SCOTUS Justices were intended to be our national “circuit breakers” for the US Constitution. In the event that Congress were to run amok with its taxing power, even with most of its citizenry seduced or asleep, the black-letter law of the Constitution was to be there to protect us, and the Justices were to make the call when Congress went too far.

Well, the SCOTUS circuit breakers failed to trip as they should have on the PPACA decision.  And it’s not Justice Roberts’ fault alone, although under the “doctrine of last clear chance,” he is certainly responsible.  Dusty, tired, and corrupted by 100 years of leftist / progressive / liberal / redistributionist / collectivist / neo-Marxist infestations, those old numbed SCOTUS circuit breakers failed to provide the intended protection.

Worst of all, by failing on this most critical case, SCOTUS has set the precedent that they will almost surely fail again when Big Government next tries to control our lives and freedoms through taxation.  And thanks to PPACA, that day is right around the corner.

Limiting federal powers of taxation was one of the prime motivators of the Founders in drafting the Constitution itself. Indeed, “Taxation without representation is tyranny!” was the battle cry of the American revolution.  Now, SCOTUS has aided and abetted taxation by misrepresentation.  What a letdown.

Thomas Sowell, as usual, put it well when, on July 4 of all days, he wrote:

Betrayal is hard to take, whether in our personal lives or in the political life of the nation. Yet there are people in Washington — too often, Republicans — who start living in the Beltway atmosphere, and start forgetting those hundreds of millions of Americans beyond the Beltway who trusted them to do right by them, to use their wisdom instead of their cleverness.

How far do you bend over backwards to avoid the obvious, that ObamaCare was an unprecedented extension of federal power over the lives of 300 million Americans today and of generations yet unborn?

These are the people that Chief Justice Roberts betrayed when he declared constitutional something that is nowhere authorized in the Constitution of the United States.

One of the Chief Justice’s admirers said that when others are playing checkers, he is playing chess. How much consolation that will be as a footnote to the story of the decline of individual freedom in America, and the wrecking of the best medical care in the world, is another story.

There are many speculations as to why Chief Justice Roberts did what he did, some attributing noble and far-sighted reasons, and others attributing petty and short-sighted reasons, including personal vanity. But all of that is ultimately irrelevant.

What he did was betray his oath to be faithful to the Constitution of the United States.

Who he betrayed were the hundreds of millions of Americans — past, present and future — whole generations in the past who have fought and died for a freedom that he has put in jeopardy, in a moment of intellectual inspiration and moral forgetfulness, 300 million Americans today whose lives are to be regimented by Washington bureaucrats, and generations yet unborn who may never know the individual freedoms that their ancestors took for granted.

Some claim that Chief Justice Roberts did what he did to save the Supreme Court as an institution from the wrath — and retaliation — of those in Congress who have been railing against Justices who invalidate the laws they have passed. Many in the media and in academia have joined the shrill chorus of those who claim that the Supreme Court does not show proper “deference” to the legislative branch of government.

But what does the Bill of Rights seek to protect the ordinary citizen from? The government! To defer to those who expand government power beyond its constitutional limits is to betray those whose freedom depends on the Bill of Rights.

Amen, Dr. Sowell, amen.

Should we give up?  Of course not.  Has the past week been enough time to rationalize and agonize over Roberts’ June 28 betrayal?  I think so.  I’ve had enough.  Dr. Sowell’s article tied a ribbon on it for me.

The next step for Conservatives is to pound away at that Obamacare bill, making it clear to We-the-People how deeply in debt we already are, how close we are to the edge of Obama’s seductive cliff (see cartoon at right), and how a Congress run amok with no SCOTUS circuit-breaker protection is going to set our house ablaze in debt just before we sail off that cliff into darkness.

Forget the differences among mandatespenalties, and taxes, America’s voters need to understand what Obama’s regime will do to them and their families through the freedom-robbing leverage of taxation, over-spending, and over-borrowing.  With SCOTUS now having abdicated, getting this message out to all Americans is the best November election strategy to win back a positive future for our republic, our children, and our grandchildren.

Victory: Court Decision on Arizona’s Controversial Immigration Law SB 1070

By Former State Senator Karen Johnson

Many people are unhappy about the June 25th Court decision on Arizona’s controversial immigration law (SB1070) and the fact that the Court struck down three out of the four provisions of the bill that had been challenged. Now, if this were a game of tennis or baseball, losing three out of four would be a near defeat. But the ruling on SB1070 is not about sports, and a mere count of the provisions the court affirmed or struck down is not a measure of the success or failure of SB1070. The court’s ruling was, in fact, a great victory. There is no cause for mourning over SB1070.

First, it must be understood that SB1070 was a long, complex piece of legislation that ran for 19 pages and involved 10 sections of statute, some of which had multiple provisions in subsections. Some very important sections of SB1070 were never challenged, such as the sections on human smuggling and employee sanctions. Attempts were made early on to challenge Section 2 (a prohibition against “sanctuary cities”) and Section 5(a) (streetside solicitation by day workers). But these attempts to thwart SB1070 were fended off in early court proceedings before the suit arrived at the Supreme Court. So, of the 10 sections to the bill, a full six of them, many with multiple provisions, were either in effect from the start or had been exonerated by the time the challenge arrived at the doorsteps of the Supreme Court. That means that 60 percent of SB1070 had already been cleared before June 25. What remained for review by the Supreme Court were all of Sections 3 and 6, and a single piece each of Sections 2 and 5. Section 2(b) was upheld in the June 25th ruling, so comes off the table (70 percent of SB1070’s 10 sections now prevailing.). That leaves three items.

Sections 3 and 6 each address a single provision of law, and each were struck down by the Court. But Section 3 isn’t absolutely required in order for the states to arrest and detain illegal immigrants; it was just an additional tool. Nice to have, but not a key provision of SB1070. Section 6 was somewhat redundant because states already have authority for that provision and can work around the court’s decision. So, losing Sections 3 and 6 is not a fatal blow to SB1070.

Lastly, Section 5 had seven different provisions in it, but only one was challenged. The Court struck it down, so a mere one-seventh of Section 5 was invalidated by the June 25th ruling, while the remaining six-sevenths stood. So, in the end, three small provisions that were not terribly crucial were struck down by the court. In contrast, the most significant provision of SB1070, the one which allows police officers making traffic stops to check for residency status, was upheld. This provision was the heart of SB1070. It was by far the most important part of the bill, the most important item under judicial review, and the one to which the Justices gave the most attention during oral arguments. And that section was upheld unanimously by all eight Justices.

Despite SB1070’s near perfect score after two years of attacks by the Left, and despite the puny success of the opponents who were so enraged about the passage of the bill, the media blathered incoherently the day of the decision about how the court “gutted” the bill and overturned nearly all of it. It’s hard to know whether such trash reporting merely reflects the usual incompetence of the mainstream media or is an overt attempt to spin the story to cover up a very public defeat of the radical Left. The anti-American Hispanic groups, the Chamber of Commerce, and various other open borders advocates spent two years and a lot of ink trying to kill SB1070 without success. Considering that the lawsuit against SB1070 was brought by the current administration in Washington, then the administration shares with its Leftist friends the sting of defeat in the face of the court’s ruling. Our current leaders forsook the Constitution long ago. The court ruling on SB1070 is a stern reminder to them that even kings (and presidents) are not above the rule of law.

Among the most satisfying aspects of the June 25th ruling are the comments and support offered in the dissenting opinion of Justice Scalia. Scalia voted to uphold all four provisions of SB1070 that were under review, and he expresses an articulate defense of the law in his dissent. “Scalia eviscerates Kennedy’s explanation” for the majority, said Arizona Senate Majority Leader Andy Biggs, an attorney who helped to pass SB1070 in 2010 and reviewed the opinion as soon as it appeared on the Court’s website. Basically, reports Biggs, Scalia says that Kennedy’s legal logic was faulty, and that Justice Kennedy misunderstood aspects ofArizona law, a failure which colored his opinion.

While Scalia’s dissent is a minority opinion, it will likely be embraced by patriots because it gives hope to those who love our country and want to protect it from the malicious efforts of those who consistently tear away at the Constitution. Here are a few of Scalia’s comments in his dissent:

“There is no federal law prohibiting the States’ sovereign power to exclude [illegal aliens].”[1]

“… the Federal Government must live with the inconvenient fact that it is a Union of independent States, who have their own sovereign powers.”[2]

“… the States have the right to protect their borders against foreign nationals, just as they have the right to execute foreign nationals for murder.”[3]

“Arizona is entitled to have ‘its own immigration policy’ ­ including a more rigorous enforcement policy ­ so so long as that does not conflict with federal law.”[4]

“… there is no reason Arizona cannot make it a state crime for … any illegal alien … to remain in Arizona.”[5]

“In my view, the State can go further … and punish them for their unlawful entry and presence in Arizona.”[6]

“The Government complains that state officials might not heed ‘federal priorities’. Indeed they might not, particularly if those priorities include willful blindness or deliberate inattention to the presence of removable aliens in Arizona.”[7]

“The State has the sovereign power to protect its borders more rigorously if it wishes ….”[8]

“It is beyond question that a State may make a violation of federal law a violation of state law as well.”[9]

Scalia is scathing in his denunciation of the majority opinion:

“But to say, as the Court does, that Arizona contradicts federal law by enforcing applications of [federal law] that the President declines to enforce boggles the mind.”[10]

“What I do fear ­ and what Arizona and the States that suppport it fear ­ is that ‘federal policies’ of non-enfforcement will leave the States helpless before those evil effects of illegal immigration that the Court’s opinion dutifully recites in its prologue but leaves unremedied in its disposition.”[11]

Scalia’s scorn for the majority ruling condenses itself into a question about the Constitutional Convention in 1787: “Would the States conceivably have entered into the Union if the Constitution itself contained the Court’s holding?”[12]

His answer: “The delegates to the Grand Convention would have rushed to the exits.”[13]

Scalia exposes the main obstacle the states face in their struggle to contain illegal immigration: “A Federal Government that does not want to enforce the immigration laws as written, and leaves the States’ borders unprotected against immigrants whom those laws would exclude.”[14]

And he raises the question that needs to be faced by everyone who cares about our freedom:. “Are the sovereign States at the mercy of the Federal Executive’s refusal to enforce the Nation’s immigration laws?”[15]

The answer to that question, of course, is no. Our nation was built on the concept of “popular sovereignty,” meaning that power rests in individuals, not government. We confer certain limited powers on government for the purpose of maintaining an orderly society, not for the purpose of stealing our freedom. The Founders recognized the dangers of an all-powerful, overbearing federal government. They did not leave the states or individual citizens at the mercy of the Executive Branch.

But what is the remedy, then, for a government that refuses to obey the laws and the Constitution and does everything it can to thwart state efforts to do so? Senator Biggs calls the current leaders in Washington “a rogue administration. They are acting outside the scope of their Constitutional authority.”

In times past, the remedy for rogue government was almost always, of necessity, an overthrow. But in a country like ours, that honors the rule of law, revolution isn’t the first option. The answer is (what else?): the rule of law! Even the most clever despot cannot outwit the rule of law. It is probably not possible to overstress the importance of this principle. Dallin H. Oaks, former Justice of the Utah Supreme Court, has said that, “All the blessings enjoyed under the United States Constitution are dependent upon the rule of law …. The rule of law is the basis of liberty.”[16] If that is the case, and I believe it is, then the remedy for a lawless government is to pursue the rule of law vigorously. The answer lies in the state legislatures, which are, after all, supposed to be stronger than the federal government anyway. SB1070 is a state assertion of the rule of law. Many other options exist, such as nullification and rejection of the federal money that makes the states slaves to federal mandates. Are we at the mercy of the Federal Government? Not on your life. Not unless the state legislatures choose to make us so.

The Supreme Court ruling on SB1070 was a step toward reestablishing respect for the rule of law. Our current Chief Executive (who has no respect whatsoever for the rule of law) has already announced that he will oppose efforts by Arizona to implement the provisions of SB1070 and will instruct ICE officials to refuse to cooperate with local law enforcement officers who apprehend illegal aliens. Arizona will need to stand up to such outrageous lawlessness on the part of the federal government.

The commander in chief is setting up a power struggle between the states and Washington, a national staring contest, so to speak, a giant game of Chicken. Whoever blinks first loses. But liberty never backs down. Freedom never loses in the long run. The pages of history are filled with tales of tyrants who went too far.[17] Tyrants always lose. Scalia closes his dissent with a blunt stand on behalf of state sovereignty that should give all states the courage to assert themselves and not back down to the federal government:

“Arizona bears the brunt of the country’s illegal immigration problem. Its citizens feel themselves under siege by large numbers of illegal immigrants who invade their property, strain their social services, and even place their lives in jeopardy. Federal officials have been unable to remedy the problem, and indeed have recently shown that they are unwilling to do so. Thousands of Arizona’s estimated 400,000 illegal immigrants—including not just children but men and women under 30 ”are now assured immunity from enforcement, and will be able to compete openly with Arizona citizens for employment. Arizona has moved to protect its sovereignty—not in contradiction of federal law, but in completee compliance with it. The laws under challenge here do not extend or revise federal immigration restrictions, but merely enforce those restrictions more effectively. If securing its territory in this fashion is not within the power of Arizona, we should cease referring to it as a sovereign State. I dissent.”[18]

Hurray for Justice Scalia! Hurray for the Constitution! Hurray for SB1070!

(c) 2012 Karen Johnson – All Rights Reserved

Footnotes:

1. Supreme Court decision on SB1070. Arizona et al v. United States, No. 11-182., Scalia Dissent, p. 7. [Link]
2. Ibid., p. 8. [Link]
3. Ibid., p. 8. [Link]
4. Ibid., p. 12. [Link]
5. Ibid., p. 12. [Link]
6. Ibid., p. 13. [Link]
7. Ibid., p. 13. [Link]
8. Ibid., p. 13. [Link]
9. Ibid., p. 14. [Link]
10. Ibid., p. 21. [Link]
11. Ibid., p. 16. [Link]
12. Ibid., p. 21. [Link]
13. Ibid., p. 22. [Link]
14. Ibid., p. 21 [Link]
15. Ibid., p. 21. [Link]
16. Dallin H. Oaks, former Justice of the Utah Supreme Court, “The Divinely Inspired Constitution,” Ensign, February, 1992.
17. See “The Utah Compact and the Rule of Law,” by Karen Johnson, Sept. 14, 2011.
18. Supreme Court decision on SB1070. Arizona et al v. United States, No. 11-182., Scalia Dissent, p. 22.

AG Tom Horne Statement on Supreme Court SB 1070 Hearing

Today’s hearing went well. The Obama Administration took the outrageous step of suing one of the 50 states for trying to enforce federal law. Arizona has been hit disproportionately hard by illegal immigration and the state had no choice but to pass SB 1070 to protect our own citizens.

I have read the transcript of today’s SB 1070 hearing in the US Supreme Court. Section 2, the most important of the 4 sections of SB1070 which are being challenged, appears to have the support of Liberal as well as Conservative Justices, and mainly with a large unanimous vote. Section 2 requires Police Officers to engage in a lawful arrest or stop, and to have reasonable suspicion, to inquire with ICE about whether the person is in this country legally. Even two of the most Liberal Justices, Sotamayor and Breyer, asked questions indicating they may vote to hold that section of the law Constitutional.

The lawyer for Arizona pointed out that a Phoenix Police officer had been shot by a suspect who had been accused of attempted murder in El Salvador, had been pulled over three times before encountering this police officer, but had never had his immigration status checked. That was due to the City of Phoenix policies that would be illegal under Section 2. Had inquiry been made before he encountered the Phoenix officer, that officer would not have been shot.

The comments of several Justices were very encouraging. Justice Scalia noted that under SB 1070, “Arizona is not trying to kick out anybody that the federal government has not already said do not belong here.” A number of the other provisions at issue are state copies of Federal laws where the Obama Administration claims that states cannot enforce identical laws in parallel. Justice Scalia added the analogy that federal law prohibits bank robbery, and stated, “Can it be made a state crime to rob those banks? I think it is.” And Chief Justice Roberts noted that the federal role in enforcing immigration law is not harmed by SB 1070 since “all it does is notify the Federal Government, here’s someone who is here illegally, here’s someone who is removable.”

Most troubling is the Federal Government’s argument that SB 1070 is unconstitutional because Arizona interferes with the Federal monopoly on foreign relations. Arizona has not opened any embassies. It has passed a law that foreign countries disagree with. If a Federal Judge can invalidate a state law on the grounds that other countries disagree with it (and it therefore interferes with the Federal monopoly on foreign relations) America’s sovereignty will be severely compromised. Justice Scalia asked the Obama Administration lawyer if “we have to enforce our laws in a manner that will please Mexico… (that) sounded like what you were saying.”

Finally, I was gratified to see that even the Obama administration lawyer agreed with Chief Justice Roberts’ contention that this case has nothing to do with ethnic and racial profiling. SB 1070 has never allowed racial profiling, and that is a persistent myth that should end today.

###

A Progressive Declaration of Self-Evident Truths

As Conservatives, we all know and revere the preamble to the Founders’ Declaration of Independence, perhaps the greatest political statement in the history of mankind, attributed to Thomas Jefferson:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed —

These self-evident truths lie at the core of our Constitution and Conservatism.  They are what mathematicians and philosophers call axiomatic.  In other words, they are acknowledged to be unprovable, but they are presumed and accepted as true (hence “self-evident”), and they are the starting point for whatever follows — in this case, the remainder of the Declaration and later the Constitution itself.

So …

If these are the self-evident truths of Conservatism, what are the self-evident truths of Progressivism?  I’ve never seen them offered up or written down in concise Jeffersonian style.  Perhaps there are bits and pieces available in the writings of Karl Marx.  Perhaps from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs is an example of a Progressive* self-evident truth.  Perhaps some of our Progressive readers can enlighten us(?).

In the absence of guidance from Progressives themselves, we are left to infer the self-evident truths of Progressivism by working backwards from observations of their statements and behaviors.  That’s what I try to do in this article.

Of course, we’re not entirely without clues. For example, Progressives like Barack Obama have told us that the Constitution is fundamentally flawed because it focuses too much on what the government cannot do to us and not enough about what the government must do for us.  As Obama has put it:

… the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties, says what the states can’t do to you, says what the federal government can’t do to you, but it doesn’t say what the federal government or the state government must do on your behalf.

This is a helpful clarification.  For over 100 years, Progressives in America have been marching to the same drummer’s beat that Obama hears.  From Obama’s statement and my amateur observations of Progressive behaviors for several decades, I offer up the following to Progressives and Conservatives alike for their comment:

Progressive Declaration
of Self-Evident Truths

We hold these Truths to be self-evident:

  1. That all people are created equal,
  2. That they are endowed by The State with certain inalienable rights,
  3. That among these are Liberty, Equality, and Social Justice,
  4. That Equality includes life-long human rights to food, shelter, clothing, education, and health care,
  5. That to pursue Equality, The State may confiscate wealth from those who have it and redistribute it among those who don’t,
  6. That to pursue Social Justice, The State may constrain Liberty and Equality for some groups as reparations for past injustices suffered by other groups.

 

What follows are my notes on how I chose these six explicit clauses to represent the self-evident truths of Progressivism:

Clause 1:
In this clause, “all people are created equal” is used to avoid the allegedly sexist “all men are created equal” in the Founders’ Declaration.  A lesser point perhaps, but I’m trying to think as a Progressive would, right from the get-go, and then stay “in character” for the discussion of the remaining five clauses.

Clause 2:
In this clause, the phrase The Statetakes the place of the wordCreatorin the Founders’ Declaration.  All mention of God or a Creator is expunged in the Progressive Declaration, thereby avoiding any dual loyalties or competition with The State.  Religion is not explicitly forbidden, but neither is it mentioned or encouraged.  It may be tolerated so long as The State feels unthreatened by it, but The State is always the final arbiter in these matters.

In a Progressive’s world, Clause 2 has significant advantages.  For example, the current conflict over Government-mandated contraceptive coverage in employer-provided health care would be instantly resolved in favor of Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and the aggrieved party named Sandra Fluke.  Similarly, all the long-running controversies over religious displays on government-owned property would be resolved quite simply — The State’s word would be final.

Most importantly, since all fundamental rights are endowed by The State, they can be limited or withdrawn by The State.  This becomes important in Clause 6.

Clause 3:
The Founders’ Declaration lists Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness as inalienable rights.  In the Progressive Declaration, “Life” does not appear at all.  This is another convenience for The State since abortion rights would be much easier to declare and maintain if Life were not an unalienable right.  Thus, it would no longer matter whether a fetus does or does not constitute “life”.  The State decides. Simple, no? In fact, if The State were to allow it, abortion rights might even extend to infanticide in the first 30 days of baby’s life, as proposed by some, or up to 2 years as proposed by another.  End-of-life decisions or euthanasia for the elderly or handicapped would also be much easier for The State to control.  Do you see the pattern?

Similarly, “pursuit of Happiness” in the Founders’ Declaration is replaced by “Social Justice”.  By including this phrase in the Progressive Declaration, the grand utopian Social Justice vision of Progressive luminaries like the self-avowed communist Van Jones is explicitly elevated to an unalienable right.  And what could be “happier” than that?

Clause 4:
When I wrote this clause, I was motivated in part by an email I received a few months ago from a self-declared Democrat/Socialist.  In it, he asked: “What is the purpose of government if not to ensure that everyone has a decent standard of living?” I’ve seldom heard the Progressive cause put so plainly and clearly.

Of course the constitutions of the European Union and South Africa already explicitly list “human rights” similar to those in Clause 4.  So by including that clause in the Progressive Declaration, the path is paved for modernization or outright replacement of our own Constitution, as implied by Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg during her recent interview in Egypt.

Of course, there is one big problem with Clause 4 — how do we achieve it?   Enter Clause 5.

Clause 5:
Clause 5 explicitly lists a principle that Progressives have implicitly followed since the beginning of the movement — that is, to achieve Clause 4, confiscate wealth from the makers and give it to the takers.

By following this principle, ostensibly out of “compassion” and “fairness”, Progressives can win the support of the takers until there are so many of them that they can out-vote, out-shout, or out-threaten the makers.  As the takers demand more and more, the makers produce less and less as they lose incentive to create new wealth only to see it confiscated.  Eventually some of them go on a de facto “strike” as the industrialists did in Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged.  Soon thereafter, Progressives run out of other people’s money and resources.

There follows some combination of civil unrest, rationing, martial law, starvation, tyranny, and virtual slavery to The State. It has happened many times in many places.  WesternFreePress.com recently interviewed three direct eye witnesses (here, here, and here). Yet Progressives keep trying despite all evidence that their beloved principles simply don’t work.

In particular, in our own time, no doubt borne of compassion and fairness, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and interest on US debt now consume all of our federal tax revenue, and our government is frantically borrowing over $4.7 billion per day to make up the shortfall for those expenses plus everything else.

Our plight is getting worse faster and faster as over 10,000 baby boomers retire every day.  And there is no way to tax or confiscate enough wealth to resolve the situation for long. This brutal truth  is shown clearly by Bill Whittle, with his usual wry humor, at this link.  Nonetheless, Progressives keep plodding along, demonizing “the rich” as the source of, as well as the solution to, our gargantuan economic woes.

Clause 5 appeals so much to base human emotions that Progressive politicians like Barack Obama exploit it to their political advantage through class-envy initiatives like the “Buffett Rule“, and “Fair Share“.  Unlike a precious few stalwarts in Congress, Obama simply refuses to confront the accounting arithmetic that is staring him in the face. He and his party perpetuate the myth that taxing the rich “just a little more” will solve the problem.  And the media never call him on it.  And the beat goes on.

Clause 6:
Clause 6 explicitly permits violation of Clauses 1 and 3 in some politically motivated circumstances in order to achieve a State-controlled version of EqualitySome current examples of Clause 6 in operation are Democrat tolerance for voter fraud, government-mandated purchase of health insurance, and Eric Holder’s infamous race-based pursuit of justice.

So …

There it is then, a Progressive Declaration of Self-Evident Truths.  But this is just a first draft.  What do you think?  Have I got it wrong?  Have I left something out?  You can enter your comments below.

Even though Progressivism has failed dismally from its very earliest days in America, it is now making a comeback thanks to the Democrat Party, hijacked by the Left after John F. Kennedy died.  It will soon swamp all of us — unless, that is, we can stop them on November 6 and begin a restoration and renewal of the principles in our original Declaration of Independence and Constitution.

In the words of Shane F. Krauser, JD,

The Constitution is the not the problem.
It is emphatically the answer.

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* Footnote: I use the term “Progressive” in this article to represent the broad mass of political thought that has variously been called Progressive / Liberal / Leftist / Socialist / Collectivist / Statist / Redistributionist / Communist or some other name.  These are not all synonymous I know, and as usual, some readers will prefer to pick at the definitions of these terms rather than address the main point of this article. Suffice it to say I use “Progressive” because “Liberal” has fallen out of favor with the Left, and “Progressive” now seems to be the most broadly accepted term for those on the Left side of the political spectrum.