On The Night Liberty Died, I Held Her Hand…..

This is tangentially about the SCOTUS hearing on ObamaCare that’s coming up in the first quarter of next year, but it’s not the crux of the subject I wish to comment on.

On March 20 – 22 of last year, I was in Washington D.C. for the vote to pass the health care bill. I had heard a few people suggest a gathering of some sort. Bachmann and some Tea Party notables mostly. For me it was different though. It wasn’t at anyone’s behest that I went, it was an irresistible draw. Think: Richard Dreyfuss in “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” as he, along with all the others who had been affected by some extraterrestrial force, somehow knew that their presence was required at Devil’s Tower in Wyoming, and nothing was going to stop them from getting there. I woke up on Friday, March 19th, and told my wife I had to go. She got it, and gave me her blessing (and started making food that would keep in a cooler to try to save money – I was unemployed at the time).

I have no idea if the old regulars here at Right Thinking had any fellow members who went to D.C. that weekend, who could provide you with a first-hand account of the event, but I do know that I was either the only one, or one of only a couple who went, on the other sites I frequented at the time. As I hear the punditry about the upcoming SCOTUS challenge, I keep getting a familiar feeling in the pit of my stomach that many commentators just aren’t/weren’t getting what this was all about. Which Justices are going to recuse themselves, will SCOTUS uphold or overturn or some compromise in-between, will certain politicians’ careers rise or fall on the outcome of the case……blah blah.

It is my firm belief that ObamaCare goes well beyond a simple debate over the finer points of constitutional law. It’s about what force of nature will triumph, the natural yearning of humans for freedom, or the raw evil of despotism and tyranny. While it is my belief that if America falls to the latter, so too will follow the entire world, that belief doesn’t really influence my committment to dedicate what remains of my life to preserving the former. The forces of the latter are global in nature, while the mindset that created the former is still, generally-speaking, only found here in America as a collective force to be reckoned with, diminished and weaker than needed though that force may be.

On the day I got back in town from the health care vote, I posted my take on where we stood as a country at Survivalist Forums, and you could see the epiphany that occurred within me that the above articulates in its first incarnation in that post. After giving my take, I summarized it thusly, which I used a part of to title this post:

“That’s why I went. I watched the grandmother I was raised with die. I watched my favorite aunt die. I watched my mother die. I held all of their hands in their final death throes and witnessed their final breaths. Last night I did the same thing with American Liberty. And I did it with a family of about 2,000 or 3,000 Brother & Sister Patriots who stayed till the end. Last night wasn’t about politics. It was about the death of American Liberty.”

I feel stronger about it now than I did then, some 20 months hence. This SCOTUS ruling will tell us, The People, if the rule of law, wholly inspired by the aforementioned natural yearning for human freedom, still holds any sway against the forces of despotism. And even if it does and the ruling goes against ObamaCare, will this chapter in American jurisprudence be enough to wake The People up to the fact that the fight is never-ending? Or will they give a collective sigh, saying to their collective self, “Shwew! That was close!” and go on about their work-a-daddy lives taking for granted the freedoms and immunities from government intrusion that court victories over highly controversial, important issues tend to mask as even being threatened? Are we collectively peering through the eye-holes of that mask? I think not.

Win or lose at SCOTUS on ObamaCare, it, in and of itself, is not the threat to our liberties that many describe it as. Apathy, complacency, and lack of civic participation are much more deadly enemies to freedom, that allow the rich environment in which travesties to liberty such as ObamaCare, the Patriot Act, and myriad examples of constitutional usurpations that have riddled this country for decades without so much as a whimper from the masses to proliferate, than any one piece of legislation even has the potential to be, no matter how egregious against liberty its provisions are.

So that’s what I felt compelled to say. Of course I hope ObamaCare is overturned, but I implore my readers not to take it as the end-all, be-all of victories over tyranny if it is. The American Revolution started in 1776, but it is a never-ending struggle, and neither the ratification of the Constitution itself, nor the passage, or upholding, or overturning of ObamaCare, can or will portend its conclusion. The precepts of the American Revolution can only be maintained and nurtured, never concluded. But it can be defeated. One entity can prevent its defeat; We, The People. Your participation is required.

CC

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  1. AlexInCT

    Everything the left does is about power and control. Obamacare is just another piece in the puzzle the tyrants that think they know what’s best for everyone are counting on to let them control the sheep. They know that their supporters confound freedom with the ability to engage in debauchery and then have government bail them out when the consequences come home to roost. Personal responsibility is a catch phrase that makes them laugh. And most importantly, they know that the people they prey on would sell enough of their freedoms for the illusion of security and a promise that anyone better off than they are will be dragged down to the common level of misery, that by the time they catch on what’s going on it is too late. We went from the violent marxist revolution and takeover to a robbing people of their freedom in chunks by making them unable to live without their support.

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  2. Mississippi Yankee

    And even if it does and the ruling goes against ObamaCare, will this chapter in American jurisprudence be enough to wake The People up to the fact that the fight is never-ending?

    In a word “NO”. Just step outside of your own circle of acquaintances and “axe” them who their US rep. is, or state senator. It may frighten you to see how little is known by people that vote for things just because they only see shinny.
    For that matter, in light of this present situation, ask some of your friends “what is the most important issue(s) in the upcoming presidential election.
    IMHO it’s the fact that the winner will be picking three (3) Supreme Court Justices in the next four years.

    Andrew Jackson type arrogance aside that’s some scary shit.

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  3. CzarChasm *

    IMHO it’s the fact that the winner will be picking three (3) Supreme Court Justices in the next four years.

    Andrew Jackson type arrogance aside that’s some scary shit.

    I get what you’re saying, but I think judicial appointments is about the best example one might contemplate of how little the (D) or (R) next to a president’s name really matters. I know at one point in the not-too-distant past that there were seven Republican-appointed justices on the court, and that court upheld Roe, even strengthened it in several subsequent rulings, gave EPA the authority to regulate C02 autonomously from Congress, forced gender integration of military schools, decimated the strict scrutiny doctrine in favor of the “rational basis” doctrine that rules justices’ method of analyzing constitutional issues to this day, and further weakened or usurped outright a plethora of other constitutional and founding precepts, doctrines and accepted governmental practices that all enure to loss of liberty for We, The People.

    It is my belief that in the big picture, there is very little difference between Republican and Democrat politicians and/or judges. At least in their propensity to put self-interest or ideological interest above that of The People’s interests or liberty’s interests. That’s why there’s no mention of partisan politics in my OP. Just like Obama is doing little more than accelerating the fall of freedom that so-called conservatives and Republicans have both participated in and been indifferent to for decades, three new justices can neither save nor destroy this nation, they can only either join in accelerating it, or slow it down so it’s more difficult to see for what it is. The biggest contributing factor to our losses of freedom is the aforementioned apathy, complacency and lack of participation of We, The People. If that’s not going to change, I’d just as soon see the acceleration towards complete tyranny continue. I’m still young enough to be somewhat effective at resisting tyranny. I’d rather die fighting it than die a decrepit old man living under it.

    CC

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  4. Mississippi Yankee

    CC, Roe-v-Wade occurred almost 40 years ago. The seven (R) aforementioned judges were not appointed by conservative presidents, the political landscape was much less partisan and states right had been out of fashion, probably since the War of Northern Aggression.

    These are VERY different times, the battle lines are much more clearly defined. This isn’t “your father’s” political strife.
    By next November I expect it will be Conservatism -vs- Socialism… full court press.

    three new justices can neither save nor destroy this nation, they can only either join in accelerating it, or slow it down so it’s more difficult to see for what it is. The biggest contributing factor to our losses of freedom is the aforementioned apathy,

    Here is where we might disagree:

    If you don’t believe three more, agenda driven, Kagans won’t make very short order of what’s left of the Constitution then perhaps you don’t even recognize that you are at war.

    Apathetic people can by be motivated, Inattentive people never see it coming.

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  5. CzarChasm *

    CC, Roe-v-Wade occurred almost 40 years ago. The seven (R) aforementioned judges were not appointed by conservative presidents,

    I think you must’ve misunderstood, MY. I said that the seven (R) court upheld Roe and made subsequent rulings strengthening it. Roe went from limiting unfettered access to abortions to the 1st trimester, to formulating an ever-changing (due to medical advancements) viability test, to where it stands today at abortions being unregulated up to the minute before birth. Roe was decided in ’73. Several rulings that strengthened it came down between ’76 and 2008, when the Court had no less than seven Republican-appointed justices sitting on the bench. For a brief period during the 90s, there were eight (R)-appointments on the bench.

    The Patriot Act came in under a seven (R) Court, and both houses of Congress, and the White House were Rep-controlled.

    McCain/Feingold was passed and signed into law by Republicans. It took seven years for the Supremes to overturn the 1st Amendment violations in the bill, and that was in 2010, after the (R)s had been whittled down to five, and Dems held the White House and controlled Congress.

    Republicans on the Court and in Congress allowed the Assault Weapons Ban to thrive for 10 years, and the Brady Bill was struck down at the federal level, but allowed to remain in effect at the state level, and the majority of states still conduct Brady checks to this day.

    Those are just a few issues I thought of off the top of my head. Republicans’ propensity for overstepping governments’ constitutional authority runs deep, starting with their standard bearer, Abraham Lincoln, who virtually repealed the Constitution during his term.

    If you don’t believe three more, agenda driven, Kagans won’t make very short order of what’s left of the Constitution then perhaps you don’t even recognize that you are at war.

    Apathetic people can by be motivated, Inattentive people never see it coming.

    Again, you obviously misunderstand. I understand that Kagan-types are agenda driven. I also understand that they’re dangerous to our liberties. I just don’t delude myself into believing that they’re any more agenda driven or dangerous than are many of the Republicans who have sat on the Court in recent years, one of whom, Justice Kennedy, is still sitting, and is the most powerful man in the world right now since he has acted as the tie-breaker for both sides many times each.

    We are at war with ourselves. I am hardly inattentive to that fact. I saw where you asked the (rhetorical?) question the other day, “When does the revolution start?” It started 235 years ago and the apathy that you claim can be overcome through motivational speaking (or something) squandered what those brave Patriots won for our posterity. I used to rabble rouse in a “let’s-get-it-started” kind of way too, Yankee, but guess what? No one wants to hear it. It threatens and shatters their illusions of living in the freest, most peaceful society ever known to man. But that is indeed an illusion, so I just prep for me and mine, stockpile what I can, and plan how best to bug-in, because buggin’ out is unrealistic without any kind of command and control structure in place, which can’t be with the blinders that the vast majority of even patriotic Americans have (seemingly) surgically implanted over their eyes. But it certainly doesn’t make me inattentive to recognize that Republicans have been as responsible for perpetrating such a great deception as the Democrats have been.

    You are welcome to submit your God-given liberties to the whims of partisan politics if you wish, Yankee, but it just might be that it is you who will suffer a swift kick to the crotch while you’re paying rapt attention to your opponent juggling your rights between his left and right hand.

    Then again, perhaps I misunderstood what you were trying to say in the above quotes. I hope I did.

    CC

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  6. Mississippi Yankee

    I think you must’ve misunderstood, MY. I said that the seven (R) court upheld Roe and made subsequent rulings strengthening it.

    My point was political times were different. There was no “All or Nothing”. Stevens was appointed by a republican president wasn’t he? (Ford) Kennedy (shit-weasel) too (Reagan).

    But the current make up is flat out partisan.
    Ginsberg- Clinton
    Breyer- Clinton
    Sotamayor- Obama
    Kagan- Obama

    Kennedy- Reagan

    Scalia- Reagan
    Thomas- Geo H. W. Bush
    Alito- Geo. W. Bush
    Roberts- Geo. W. Bush

    And here is where we differ, I have to believe in something, and I believe more Obama picks will rapidly degrade into already a ‘worse case scenario. And I also believe that those last four men are conservative AND understand what’s at stake.

    BTW I despise Kennedy, Sandra Day O’Connor too not to mention Olympia Dukakis and Susan Collins all for thinking they were kingmakers. The last two a little differently, but especially because I have roots that go back to that portion of the Massachusetts Bay Colony (Maine) since the latter part of the 1600’s. Fucking bints, both of em’.
    If, on the off chance that democrat of another color Romney even gets the nomination all bets are off. I do have a bug-out plan. And being retired I’ve plenty of time to plan.

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  7. CzarChasm *

    And here is where we differ, I have to believe in something, and I believe more Obama picks will rapidly degrade into already a ‘worse case scenario. And I also believe that those last four men are conservative AND understand what’s at stake.

    Yankee, I really don’t think we do disagree. I have said at least twice in this thread alone that another Obama term, with all that comes with it, SCOTUS appointments etc., will likely accelerate the expansion of the dire situation this country is currently in. Surely you got from my OP that civic participation is the only thing I see that can prevent the total onset of tyranny that I believe we’re already on the brink of, didn’t you? All I’m saying is that if a huge rise in participation isn’t going to happen, I’d just as soon get the party started while I’m still young enough to resist in somewhat effective ways. The only other thing I’ve said is that, though I agree with you that electing a Republican might slow the progress towards tyranny down, the ones who have contributed in a huge way to its progression aren’t going to get a pass from me, and they shouldn’t get one from you either. I purposely didn’t mention Scalia, Thomas, Roberts or Alito when talking about Republican-appointed SCOTUS usurpers, but just the fact that we have to rely on only four unelected, unaccountable men in black as the protectors of our freedoms is highly indicative (to me at least) of just how far we have fallen from founding principles. Electing Republicans simply isn’t going to be enough to reverse the damage that thousands of Republicans have contributed to over the last century and a half or so. My personal feeling is that anyone who thinks it will be is deluding themselves.

    I’d really enjoy discussing bug-out vs. bug-in plans with you and everybody else, Yankee. It’s something I’ve spent the better part of my adult life preparing for, and not even most of it inspired by the threat of political upheaval. I grew up in So Cal and got knocked out of bed on the Monday following my 16th birthday by the Sylmar earthquake that destroyed the DMV where I had to go to get my first drivers license that day. I understood at a very early age that all the modern conveniences of life could be gone in an instant. I found that out again last April when the tornado swarms tore through here and the 35,000 square miles surrounding us. Bugging “in” wasn’t an option for a lot of my neighbors, as their homes were completely destroyed, but bugging out was no better of an option, so we saw exactly what we’ll see if/when it is political upheaval that triggers the need to employ drastic survival techniques; communities form where before they only lived next to each other not even knowing each others’ names. I saw a lot of the same kind of community formation in the days after Katrina when I went to the Biloxi area to help out. You may well have been directly affected by both of those events, and if you were, then we both know more about what “bugging out” really means than the average Joe. Anyway, it really seems to me that you and I are much closer to being in agreement about everything being discussed here, than we are at any significant odds about anything.

    I dont like the legislation any more than you do, but this narrative of yours is nonsense.

    Feel free to join the conversation and challenge any point or premise asserted you wish to whenever you’re ready, but logging on just to call other people’s opinions nonsense is, in and of itself, nonsense.

    CC

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  8. Mississippi Yankee

    Maybe it’s time we start to differentiate Conservative from Republican. Who knows, it might even force/allow some libertarians to pick a side.

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