How the Supreme Court Stacked the Deck Against Economic Liberty

A federal price-fixing case highlights the judiciary’s troubling deference to government regulation.

When it comes to the protection of individual rights by the U.S. Supreme Court, some rights are more equal than others. If a government regulation infringes on freedom of speech or the right to vote, for example, the Court presumes the law to be unconstitutional and forces the government to justify its actions. Lawyers call this approach strict scrutiny.

But if a government regulation infringes on economic rights, the Court takes the opposite tack, presuming the law to be constitutional and therefore requiring the regulated party to shoulder the burden of proving why the law should be struck down. This approach is known as the rational-basis test.

The key text spelling out this bifurcated system is the Supreme Court’s 1938 decision in United States v. Carolene Products Co. At issue was a federal law forbidding the interstate shipment of so-called filled milk, which is basically a milk product made with oil rather than milk fat. Because filled milk looks like normal milk or cream while containing a cheaper non-dairy ingredient, the dairy industry viewed the product as a competitor and lobbied successfully for the restriction. And although the federal regulation seemed to have little to do with protecting the health or safety of the public, the Supreme Court allowed the protectionist rule to stand thanks to the generous terms of the rational-basis test.

When it comes to “regulatory legislation affecting ordinary commercial transactions,” the Court declared in Carolene Products, “the existence of facts supporting the legislative judgment is to be presumed.” As for non-economic rights, the Court added in the case’s fourth footnote, “there may be narrower scope for operation of the presumption of constitutionality.” Thus economic liberty was demoted to second-class status while certain other rights were promised future judicial protection.

The courts have followed this basic approach ever since, although a persistent question remains unanswered: While the rational-basis test is clearly designed to privilege government action, does that make it the functional equivalent of a rubber stamp?

The Supreme Court now has the opportunity to provide a clear answer. Last week the Pacific Legal Foundation, a national public interest law firm based in Sacramento, California, petitioned the Court to grant review in the case of Hettinga v. United States. At issue is a New Deal era federal price-fixing scheme for the sale of milk. Under the terms of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, minimum milk prices were set for various federal marketing areas around the country. Most of the dairy industry fell under this system, though an exemption was granted for what’s known as “producer-handlers,” essentially dairy farmers who also bottle and distribute their own milk.

In the early 2000s, Sarah Farms, an Arizona-based producer-handler owned and operated by Dutch immigrant Hein Hettinga and his wife Ellen, became successful by selling milk for a lower price than the federally-fixed minimum. In response, the Hettingas’ competitors turned to the government for help. As The Washington Post reported, “a coalition of giant milk companies and dairies, along with their congressional allies, decided to crush Hettinga's initiative. For three years, the milk lobby spent millions of dollars on lobbying and campaign contributions and made deals with lawmakers, including incoming Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.).”

The result was the Milk Regulation Equity Act of 2005, which, among other things, imposed minimum milk pricing on all producer-handlers operating out of Arizona that distribute at least 3,000,000 pounds of fluid milk per month. Not coincidentally, Sarah Farms is the only producer-handler in the entire state that fits that description. The 2005 law also imposed new minimum price rules on all handlers selling prepackaged milk in California—a provision that also applied to just one existing business, the Arizona-based bottling facility GH Dairy, which also happens to be owned and operated by the Hettingas.

So the family brought suit in federal district court, charging that the new regulations singled their businesses out for abuse and violated their right to equal protection. In response, the federal government invoked the rational-basis test, arguing that the new law was reasonably related to the government’s interest in regulating the sale of milk.

The federal district court accepted the government’s claim of rational basis and dismissed the case. In April of this year, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit affirmed the lower court’s ruling against the Hettingas.

The question now facing the Supreme Court is whether the lower court acted correctly by accepting the government’s mere assertion of rational-basis, or whether the Hettingas are entitled to present their evidence of government malfeasance. As their petition to the Supreme Court puts its, “the rational basis test may be lenient, but a court employing that test must still allow a plaintiff the opportunity to prove his or her case.”

It’s a compelling argument. Indeed, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit has already adopted that very position. In the 2002 case of Craigmiles v. Giles, the 6th Circuit reviewed Tennessee’s requirement that anyone selling coffins in the state first obtain a funeral director’s license, even if those individuals sold coffins exclusively and never once came in contact with a dead body as part of their business. In that case, the court refused to dismiss based solely on the state’s assertion that it had a rational basis for the law, and instead allowed the legal challengers to present evidence to rebut Tennessee’s claims. After reviewing the evidence, the 6th Circuit voided the licensing requirement. “Tennessee’s justifications,” the court declared, “come close to striking us with the ‘force of a five-week-old, unrefrigerated dead fish.’”

The Hettingas seek the same opportunity to prove their case against a misguided government action. Indeed, the central point of the case is not to strike down an economic regulation, it’s to insure that these family farmers and other entrepreneurs like them receive their day in court.

As Justice John Paul Stevens remarked in a 1992 dissent, “deference is not abdication and ‘rational basis scrutiny’ is still scrutiny.” The Supreme Court should heed his words and take the case.

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  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Probably because freedom of speech is actually there in the constitution (and to some extent, the right to vote as well), while economic liberty is a rabbit pulled out of the misunderstood 9th amendment hat.

    I support economic liberty, of course, but it's not a constitutional right. The 9th amendment was intended to enforce the enumerated powers doctrine, not enforce any unwritten rights.

  • ||

    Are you suggesting Wickard was correctly decided then?

    Also, fuck you CJ Roberts with a broken beer bottle dipped in battery acid.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Wickard was an enumerated powers case, not an economic liberty case. And most of the laws that are challenged on economic liberty grounds are state level ones, so enumerated powers don't even apply.

    Leave Chief-J alone.

  • ||

    Was it, in your view, correctly decided? A yes or no will do.

    And no, I will not leave him alone, Tulpa Crocker. He single-handly rewrote an unconstitutional law to fit, in his view, a constitutional one. He rewrote a new patchwork statute out of whole cloth strips.

  • ||

    "handedly" Dammit! My kingdom for a preview field that works...

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Of course it was wrongly decided. Wickard's wheat farming wasn't interstate commerce.

  • np||

    That's ironic. Behold, Tulpa reasoning:
    How the Justice Department Transformed an Amish Feud Into a Federal Hate Crime

    But hey, look, Dettelbach says: The "Wahl battery-operated hair clippers" used in the assaults "were purchased at Walmart and had travelled in and affected interstate commerce in that they were manufactured in Dover, Delaware." The defendants also used "a pair of 8'' horse mane shears which were manufactured in the State of New York and sent via private, interstate postal carrier to [a retailer] in Ohio for resale." They took pictures of their victims with "a Fuji disposable camera from Walmart" that "travelled in and affected interstate commerce in that it was manufactured in Greenwood, South Carolina." They used "an instrumentality of interstate commerce" (i.e., a highway) to reach victims in Trumbull County, Ohio. (They never actually left the state, but they could have.)
  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That's not my reasoning, buddy. I said Wickard was wrongly deicided.

  • ||

    At issue is a New Deal era federal price-fixing scheme for the sale of milk. Under the terms of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, minimum milk prices were set for various federal marketing areas around the country. Most of the dairy industry fell under this system, though an exemption was granted for what’s known as “producer-handlers,” essentially dairy farmers who also bottle and distribute their own milk.

    This is precisely what the Hettingas are doing. Just like Wickard with his wheat, except in this case, instead of keeping the the milk for their own consumption (which would have value and their property), they are choosing to sell their property and being penalized for it if they exceed "3,000,000 fluid pounds of milk per month", for nothing more than the crime of selling less then their competitors.

    Exactly like Wickard was penalized for growing "too much wheat," and his neighbour, Filburn, was chafed (ha!) by it.

    If Wickard was wrongly decided, why shouldn't the Hettingas have their day in court, and by your logic, win?

  • ||

    "...for less than..." Dammit, I can't type today.

  • ||

    Because there's no logic to his declarations of fact.

    *Street sign*: "Speed limit 50 mph"

    Tulpa: That sign does not, in fact, say that the speed limit is 50 mph. It only applies to gay, cramped European cars nobody in their right mind would drive, and also to turquoise unicorns.

  • ||

    It only applies to gay, cramped European cars nobody in their right mind would drive,

    I see you are familiar with The LADA. -D

  • ||

    Fucking Ladas and Moskviches and Tavrias. Modern European clowncars are bad enough, but Ladas?

    I think I'd rather crawl.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    And here we go with RPA's strawmanning.

    One disadvantage of being a good debater is that people resort to the most horrible insults and lies when they realize they can't argue against you fair and square.

  • ||

    That kid in the corner of the playground, next to the dumpster, patting himself on the back and congratulating himself on his badassery as everybody else steers clear -- that's you, right?

    And I wasn't talking to you. Goalposts -- always movable!

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    No, you were just talking shit about me behind my back.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Where did I say they shouldn't? My issue is with the article's lament about economic liberty's status vs. free speech etc, not this particular case.

    I think this is properly an enumerated powers issue, or possibly a bill of attainder issue. Unfortunately existing (stupid) precedent closes off both those avenues of attack, so the plaintiffs are forced into novel (and to my sight, fallacious) arguments.

  • ||

    to my sight

    --------------

    You forgot your glasses somewhere, I guess.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    If it were a state law in Wickard I wouldn't have had a constitutional problem with it, though, because it's only an enumerated powers thing. It still would have been a stupid law that I would have strongly opposed, but not unconstitutional.

  • ||

    Unconstitutional state laws are every bit as unconstitutional as unconstitutional federal laws. States and local governments can't ban free speech or guns under the constitution, for example (though they've gotten away with that so far.)

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Unconstitutional state laws are every bit as unconstitutional as unconstitutional federal laws.

    Not necessarily. Depends on the reason for their federal unconstitutionality. If they're unconstitutional because of a BoR issue, then yes (assuming you agree with incorporation, which I'm not sure I do).

    If the issue is that the feds don't have an enumerated power to do what the law is supposed to do, then there's no reason the states can't do it because they have general police powers, not enumerated ones.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Tulpa, you precongitive bastard!

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That's what she said.

  • Xenocles||

    An unconstitutional federal law might not be unconstitutional as a state law, but that does not mean the states are not bound by the same document.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Unconstitutional state laws are every bit as unconstitutional as unconstitutional federal laws.

    That's only true in a subset of laws, specifically related to the rights that the Constitution explicitly says are protected. It's not true when the issue is a power that the Constitution specifically says the federal government doesn't have, but doesn't explicitly say is left to the people.

  • ||

    And that's why only explicitly stating some protected rights was a shitty idea.

    But thank the flying spaghetti monster they at least listed some.

  • ||

    With each thread, you get better and better at bullshitting about Constitutional doctrine.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    The bullshit is so good that you can't even come up with an argument against it.

    But then, is it really bullshit anymore?

  • ||

    Arguing? With you? Give me a fucking break.

    Every time somebody responds with a deconstruction of some harebrained hypothesis you conjured up, your reply by appealing to supposed, fabricated technicalities in the text as a confirmation of your position.

    You come up with some amusing shit, Tulpa, but you're not even trying here.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    "I could totally beat the shit out of Ndamakong Suh but I just don't feel like it today."

  • ||

    Your claim: "The 9th amendment was intended to enforce the enumerated powers doctrine, not enforce any unwritten rights."

    The text you're bullshitting about: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

    Here's Hamilton on the matter:

    "The exceptions here or elsewhere in the constitution, made in favor of particular rights, shall not be so construed as to diminish the just importance of other rights retained by the people; or as to enlarge the powers delegated by the constitution; but either as actual limitations of such powers, or as inserted merely for greater caution."

    Here's James Madison:

    "It has been objected also against a Bill of Rights, that, by enumerating particular exceptions to the grant of power, it would disparage those rights which were not placed in that enumeration; and it might follow by implication, that those rights which were not singled out, were intended to be assigned into the hands of the General Government, and were consequently insecure. This is one of the most plausible arguments I have ever heard against the admission of a bill of rights into this system; but, I conceive, that it may be guarded against. I have attempted it, as gentlemen may see by turning to the last clause of the fourth resolution."

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    RPA, both of them are basically saying the same thing as I am.

    Note that Hamilton SPECIFICALLY mentions that the ninth is protecting against the BoR being seen as a repudiation of enumerated powers. And he mentions that the rights which are written into the text are actual limitations on federal power; ie they would not be actual limitations if they weren't there.

    By your logic, there's no reason for amendments 1-8 because the 9th takes care of everything.

  • ||

    Are you high? Here's what he's saying:

    "The exceptions here or elsewhere in the constitution, made in favor of particular rights, shall not be so construed as to diminish the just importance of other rights retained by the people;"

    1) Just because the Bill of Rights lists some rights doesn't mean they're the only rights that exist/other rights not in the list are not as important.

    "or as to enlarge the powers delegated by the constitution;"

    2) The fact that the Bill of Rights exists doesn't mean by implication that the powers of the federal government are actually bigger than the Constitution explicitly says they are because they somehow require exceptions to be clearly stated -- they don't.

    "but either as actual limitations of such powers, or as inserted merely for greater caution."

    3) On the other hand, it's fine to view the Bill of Rights as a list of constraints on the enumerated powers. So the Constitution may grant the federal government the power to do something, but the Bill of Rights puts limit on those powers explicitly.

    4) It's also okay to view the Bill of Rights as an attempt to be extra cautious and add an additional layer of protection for people's rights.

  • ||

    The logic of 3 is furthered by the fact that the Bill of Rights is a series of amendments. In other words, they supersede the primary text.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    2-4 I completely agree with.

    1 is of questionable relevance. Existence of rights is irrelevant without enforcement of those rights, and neither the Constitution nor the BoR gives any guidelines whatsoever on enforcing rights that are not written there.

    When NAMBLA argues that there's a right to sex with children via the 9th, by what standard do we say they're wrong? protefeed already posited that the only rights protected are those that do not harm others, but that's not in the text and certainly not backed up by what govts were doing in practice in 1789.

    My point is, you have to have a standard that everyone agrees on. Saying that it's not enforceable unless it's in the text is a very convenient standard, and does not contradict anything said by the Fed papers.

  • ||

    "1 is of questionable relevance. Existence of rights is irrelevant without enforcement of those rights, and neither the Constitution nor the BoR gives any guidelines whatsoever on enforcing rights that are not written there."

    What the fuck are you talking about? There is no such thing as "enforcement of rights." Rights exist without government, and the Bill of Rights is a selective textual affirmation of some of the rights among them whose intent was additional security for those rights and a preemptive, preventative series of constrictions to be applied to the enumerated powers previously declared by the prime body of the Constitutional text.

    Again, what the fuck are you talking about? The Constitution mentions no "guidelines" on "enforcing" those rights that were specifically listed in the Bill of Rights, but commands that they not be violated, or simply that they exist. So what's the need for "guidelines"?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Like I said, the existence of rights is irrelevant without enforcement.

    Whatever economic liberty rights the Hettingas may have are irrelevant if men with guns come to their farm, take their milk, slaughter their cows, and burn their house down and no one stops them.

  • ||

    You're using very inappropriate terminology, but alright, I know what you mean. So what's your point? I'll repeat what I said before:

    The Constitution mentions no "guidelines" on "enforcing" those rights that were specifically listed in the Bill of Rights either, but commands that they not be violated, or simply reminds that they exist.

  • ||

    You do realize that's the same bullshit that Tony espouses to make it okay for his team to run amuck right?

  • ||

    "When NAMBLA argues that there's a right to sex with children via the 9th, by what standard do we say they're wrong?

    Because engaging in sexual relations with children (I don't give a shit about legal definitions -- when I say 'child', I mean exactly that) can cause psychological damage, physical harm, or both to them.

    "protefeed already posited that the only rights protected are those that do not harm others, but that's not in the text"

    If you're a Declarationist, it is. And I am.

    "and certainly not backed up by what govts were doing in practice in 1789."

    Of course it was, especially the governments of the rebellious colonies. It's just that certain groups didn't fit into the lawmakers', or people's-at-large, moral community. I assume you're referring to such things as slavery.

  • ||

    And here's Supreme Court precedent for Declarationism:

    Cotting v. Godard, 183 U.S. 79 (1901):

    "The first official action of this nation declared the foundation of government in these words: "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. "While such declaration of principles may not have the force of organic law, or be made the basis of judicial decision as to the limits of right and duty, and while in all cases reference must be had to the organic law of the nation for such limits, yet the latter is but the body and the letter of which the former is the thought and the spirit, and it is always safe to read the letter of the Constitution in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. No duty rests more imperatively upon the courts than the enforcement of those constitutional provisions intended to secure that equality of rights which is the foundation of free government."

  • ||

    "By your logic, there's no reason for amendments 1-8 because the 9th takes care of everything."

    The only reasons for the Bill of Rights are practical, Tulpa -- "greater caution." The central government can only do the things the Constitution expressly says it can, and since it doesn't say it can censor speech or ban guns, it can't, with or without a Bill of Rights. That's the fucking point.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    In 1789 that might have been true that the BoR was unnecessary given the EPD -- I don't think it was true even then -- but nowadays even a fedgov that stayed within its enumerated powers would have copious opportunities to infringe on free speech and free press, etc. The Internet is pretty much the definition of interstate commerce, so the feds could regulate internet speech to their hearts content without the 1st.

  • ||

    1) Again, I was speaking primarily in terms of technicality, not practical reality. Nobody argues that the presence of the Bill of Rights doesn't hinder the advance of federal tyranny.

    2) The Internet is pretty much the definition of interstate commerce? Sweet Jesus.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Re: 2, that wasn't the best phrasing, but the point remains. If I subscribe to Reason magazine in electronic or print form, the fedgov can regulate the content of that magazine under the commerce clause if the 1st amendment weren't there.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    (assuming I don't live in CA or wherever it's published)

  • ||

    No, it can't.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Why? What's stopping it?

  • ||

    The fact that it's not empowered to regulate it.

  • ||

    There's literally nothing to talk about. You're making conclusions about a text that are counter to what the text states. It's pretty fucking simple, Tulpa.

  • ||

    You're making conclusions about a text that are counter to what the text states.

    yeah you kicked his ass.

    Weird it is like he is putting up blinders trying to ignore what the actual words say.

    He is not dumb so it isn't that he does not understand them.

    He is either simply fucking around as a troll or he has some sort mind block preventing him from seeing it.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Maybe my retina just doesn't process the invisible ink color that Madison used when he wrote that the "freedom to economic liberty cannot be infringed" in the 9th amendment?

  • ||

    Did you just miss everythong Groovus and I said? Are you fucking kidding me?

  • dinkster||

    Certain Framers didn't even want to include the Bill of Rights because people like Tulpa would inevitably draw the wrong conclusions. Telling.

  • ||

    while economic liberty is a rabbit pulled out of the misunderstood 9th amendment hat.

    I support economic liberty, of course, but it's not a constitutional right.

    Unenumerated rights are supposed to be every bit as protected as enumerated ones. The Constitution guarantees the right to do anything that doesn't harm others. SCOTUS tried to rewrite that, and hasn't been called on their bullshit yet.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    The Constitution guarantees the right to do anything that doesn't harm others.

    No, it doesn't. Where is that in the text?

    Remember RC's rule "you today, me tomorrow"? It applies to libertarians too. If we can pretend things are in the text when they're really not, so can the statists, and we have no moral standing to object when they do.

  • ||

    "Me today, you tomorrow," is the exact quotation of said Iron Law, Tulpa.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Either way the meaning is the same.

  • np||

    Oh hey look, I don't have a right to breathe or eat, since it's not written in the Constitution! And if government decides to take that right away, it's perfectly Constitutional!

    The 9th asserts the Constitution is a negative rights document, that the "enumeration of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people". And yet your argument is that rights need to be granted by the Constitution?

    You can't "enforce" rights--that's a positive rights, utilitarian way of thinking--only protect them. Protect against government's own enforcement of legislation that violates these rights such as economic liberties.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Oh hey look, I don't have a right to breathe or eat, since it's not written in the Constitution! And if government decides to take that right away, it's perfectly Constitutional!

    Amendment IV:

    No person shall be ... deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law...

    And of course rights have to be enforced. Someone has to stop the men with guns from coming to your door and throwing you into a cage. There was a right to free speech in the USSR constitution also, but no one enforced it, so that right was just poorly-absorbent toilet paper.

  • ||

    You don't get it. He's not saying that rights don't need to be protected, but that government isn't the source of those rights.

    A libertarian government wouldn't enforce rights -- it would prevent their violation.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That's semantics. Preventing violation is a type of enforcement.

    Did Russians have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness from 1917-1991?

  • ||

    Didn't I already answer that question?

    It's only semantics if you think in purely practical terms. It's about morality. Do you honestly not understand the distinction?

    Rights are always there. A libertarian government doesn't enforce them, but prevents their violation. That rights may be easier violated if there were no government does not mean the government provides those rights.

    Do you understand that?

    "Did Russians have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness from 1917-1991?"

    Morally, yes. Practically, no. That's the distinction.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Morality is a legislative/executive concern, not a judicial one. Courts have to apply the law (and the constitution) without concern for morality.

  • ||

    The Constitution is predicated on those principles, and all precedents of law antithetical to its declarations and grants of power are utterly null and void.

  • ||

    There was a right to free speech in the USSR constitution also, but no one enforced it, so that right was just poorly-absorbent toilet paper.

    Tulpa you are pissing me off but I actually want you to understand where you are wrong. So i will be nice.

    You just moved the goal post here. The argument was about what the constitution actually says...not how the soviet union ignored what its constitution said.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I didn't move any goalposts. RPA moved the discussion to another angle and I obliged.

    If you guys are talking about rights in the abstract, I'll excuse myself because AFAIC that's masturbation. What matters is what rights can/should be enforced.

  • ||

    All of them, then?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    No, the ones that are identified in the text of the BoR. Any other standard is inviting mischief.

  • ||

    All of which you summoned from the perilous chasm of your imagination, borne of nothing factual, reasonable, or even theoretically sound.

  • ||

    so what do you think liberty means if it doesn't encompass economic as well as political and societal liberty?

  • Paul.||


    support economic liberty, of course, but it's not a constitutional right. The 9th amendment was intended to enforce the enumerated powers doctrine, not enforce any unwritten rights.

    Define "economic liberty". Often times the 'economic liberty' we're talking about being infringed is usually a simple deprivation of property and freedom of association, things which sort of are in the constitution.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I don't recognize freedom of association being in the first amendment. It's a freedom to physically gather, and only applies to citizens (as it is a "right of the people").

    There's no restriction of private property here; if you're referring to potential confiscation of the milk for violating the law, they get due process, not an absolute protection of their property.

  • Sudden||

  • ||

    You know who else were racists?

  • Ted S.||

    Jeremiah Wright and the First Wookie?

  • Killazontherun||

    After the election things might get boring, news is not consumed nearly as much, might as well provoke race riots to keep the viewership glued.

  • PapayaSF||

    Isn't it amazing how racism has gotten worse in the last four years? It must be Bush's fault somehow.

  • Ice Nine||

    Racial attitudes have not improved in the four years since the United States elected its first black president

    This is terribly perplexing when you think about all the things that the first black president - and his Dept of Justice - and his Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have done to improve them.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Technically, the equal protection clause doesn't apply to the feds, only the states. The fact that the regulation seems narrowly tailored to apply to one company makes me think they might be better off arguing it's a bill of attainder, which is forbidden in the main body of the constitution.

  • Paul.||

    This is something I could get behind.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    In response, the federal government invoked the rational-basis test, arguing that the new law was reasonably related to the government’s interest in regulating the sale of milk.

    "This law is necessary, due to the necessity of this law."

    Is that pretty much it?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    No. Regulating milk sales falls under the purview of the commerce clause according to (stupid, but in the books) SCOTUS precedent.

  • ||

    Yes, but there was an exception carved out for "producer-handlers" of milk, in this case, the Hettingas. That is the heart of this case.

    BTW:

    The 2005 law also imposed new minimum price rules on all handlers selling prepackaged milk in California—a provision that also applied to just one existing business, the Arizona-based bottling facility GH Dairy, which also happens to be owned and operated by the Hettingas.

    This is not intrastate commerce.

    Tulpa (LAOL-PA)| 10.27.12 @ 1:47PM |#

    If it were a state law in Wickard I wouldn't have had a constitutional problem with it, though, because it's only an enumerated powers thing. It still would have been a stupid law that I would have strongly opposed, but not unconstitutional.

    The MREA of 2005 is a Federal law, not State.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Ah, I didn't see that. In that case they're screwed.

    It's a stupid law, but not unconstitutional.

  • ||

    Then Wickard was correctly decided then, no? A stupid case ruling, but not unconstutional, right? Because the cases are congruent for the reasons I cited.

    These people just want their day in court, Tulpa.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    The milk in this case is leaving their farm and being sold in another state. Not remotely like Wickard. It's clear interstate commerce.

    I think it's arguably a bill of attainder though, since the regulation seems tailored to hit them and no one else.

  • ||

    What you seem to be saying, Tulpa, is they are screwed either way, if it was intrastate, the Stategov can penaltax them. If it is interstate, then the Fedgov can penaltax them. All because they produced too much milk for a lesser price than their competitors could, below the established price fixing scheme instituted in 1937, then changed in 2005.

    According this, there is no bill of attainder. Bupkis.

    This is why I specifically asked you if Wickard was correctly decided or not, regardless of where his wheat ended up, either across a state line or refusing to move it to his neighbours house across the street as well as how much he grew. Just like how much milk the Hettangers' cows produced (apparently, too much was produced according to the competitors and lobbyists).

    It should not matter how much milk was produced, where the milk ends up, and the Fedgov should not have penalized these people for engaging in commerce. Sounds an awful lot like Wickard to me, even if one of the respective products ended up in a different, and the other was not intended to go anywhere.

    Apparently, both action and inaction can be penaltaxed.

    Fuck you, CJ Roberts.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    This is why I specifically asked you if Wickard was correctly decided or not, regardless of where his wheat ended up

    Huh? That's like asking you to decide whether I have dysentery or not, regardless of how much I've shit today.

  • ||

    Unless Groovus is asking about your thoughts as to the other factors of the decision, and/or the circumstances of its formation.

    But that's too easy, right?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I've already given plenty of information to deduce my thoughts on these matters. GM is apparently trying to force me to contradict myself, except the two positions aren't contradictory.

    I'm really not sure what he's up to. Maybe he's been dipping into the nitrous this morning.

  • ||

    Huh? That's like asking you to decide whether I have dysentery or not, regardless of how much I've shit today.

    Enough with the shop talk. What you are being is dishonest. For both of these cases to be Constitutional, they would have to be correctly decided, no? Regardless of whether or not you agree personally.

    So, Wickard, according to your logic, was correctly decided, no?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    They're totally different cases.

    Wickard was wrongly decided, because A1S8 gives no power to Congress to regulate wheat production if the wheat in question is not sold across state boundaries.

    In this case, the milk people sold their product across state boundaries so the Commerce Clause comes into force, and thus Congress has the enumerated power to regulate their sales activity in other states. Barring the discovery of some prohibition on Congress doing so in other parts of the constitution (such as the bill of attainder clause), game over. The cases differ in a massively important way.

    What dishonesty is there?

  • ||

    Wickard was wrongly decided, because A1S8 gives no power to Congress to regulate wheat production if the wheat in question is not sold across state boundaries.

    THAT is the kicker, because in the decision, it was specifically mentioned (paraphrasing) "What if he had sold it across state lines?" Thus giving Congress and SCOTUS the ever popular Commerce Clause. Otherwise, you would be correct if it was only limited to intrastate. Which is what is was.

    SCOTUS asked, "What if he sells it to somebody else out of state?" preemptively. Which the recent giant abortion that Roberts performed is also germane, as the same damn questions were asked.

    I'm arguing proximity should not matter, and SCOTUS interprets differently. Also, the intent of the Commerce Clause was to PREVENT this type of anti-competitive taxation restricting trade and commerce.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I'm not arguing proximity matters either.

    If you sell your milk from a farm in Galveston to a store in El Paso, you're not under Congress' power to regulate. If you stand one inch inside Texas and sell the milk to a person one inch into Louisiana, then you are. It's a jurisdiction thing, not a proximity thing.

    Since the states are prohibited from regulating interstate commerce, Congress has to. You can't have it be totally unregulated.

  • ||

    Since the states are prohibited from regulating interstate commerce, Congress has to. You can't have it be totally unregulated.

    That's why the Wickard decision is especially pernicious, Tulpa. The Fedgov basically said how much wheat he could grow and what he could do with it. Because he was seen as "growing too much," he came under his neighbour's radar, even though it never left the state.

    Just like these dairy people, their dairy farms produced too much milk for a lower price and their competitors got pissed, greased a few lobby and poli palms, and now they're pretty much screwed. If they hadn't been so successful at their labour (terrible thing providing fresh wholesome milk for a better price! SATAN! HORNS!!!), they might not have popped up on the competitors radar.

    They got fucked for being too productive, and I find that sickening, Tulpa.

  • PapayaSF||

    Because he was seen as "growing too much," he came under his neighbour's radar, even though it never left the state.

    Isn't it worse than that? I thought the wheat never left his farm.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    What you seem to be saying, Tulpa, is they are screwed either way, if it was intrastate, the Stategov can penaltax them. If it is interstate, then the Fedgov can penaltax them. All because they produced too much milk for a lesser price than their competitors could, below the established price fixing scheme instituted in 1937, then changed in 2005.

    Yes, they can, constitutionally. Those govt actions would be stupid but there is a difference between stupid and unconstitutional. Governments are dangerous but necessary things, just like my large intestine.

  • ||

    http://s12.postimage.org/j2q9vjeyj/1986.jpg

    That NSFW photo is the only thing keeping me from scalping myself in frustration. You're like a fucking brick wall, Tulpa, only less receptive to information.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Looks like I was right, abstract rights discussion is masturbation.

  • ||

    What, in the name of God, are you talking about?

  • ||

    Yes, they can, constitutionally. Those govt actions would be stupid but there is a difference between stupid and unconstitutional.

    Agreed. Wickard, which arose out of the same group of laws that FDR signed into law, was stupid but correctly decided, according to your logic now. You said it was incorrectly decided in the few comments.

    This case is bourne of that line of legal reasoning and jurisprudence. There is literally nothing the Fedgov can't tax, and if they don't, Stategov will. Apparently, they were stupid then, and stupid now.

    Governments are dangerous but necessary things, just like my large intestine.

    Just get a colonoscopy and be done with it, FFS.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I have a twist in my colon, sorry.

  • ||

    I don't understand why so many people think those shits in black are any better than the rest of us. They've fans of the state, and that's unlikely to change.

  • ||

    Proofreading, how the fuck does it work?

    *They're

  • The Late P Brooks||

    while economic liberty is a rabbit pulled out of the misunderstood 9th amendment hat derp.

  • ||

    Yeah, that nearly made me spill my coffee. Jumping the shark so early in a thread has got to be a record.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

  • ||

    Not so long go Tulpa told me that deregulation will slow the economy.

    I can't remember really reading what Tulpa writes...has he always been this bad? or is this recent thing?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    You're not giving the context. We were talking about massive immediate deregulation of all sectors simultaneously. That would be a tremendous shock to the market and would cause a ton of businesses that have become dependent on the way things are to crash and burn.

    In the long run things would be better after everything got sorted out and the markets adjusted, but in the short term it would be very messy. As the song says, it's a long way down when all the knots we tied have come undone.

  • ||

    We were talking about massive immediate deregulation of all sectors simultaneously.

    No we were not. Neither one of us said anything about massive deregulation. Though i do no think it would matter.

    That would be a tremendous shock to the market

    Every deregulation that has occurred from the phone monopoly to airlines to labor laws this has not happened...

    Aside from he fact that your "shock" and its cause and effect are ill defined the actual historic evidence shows the exact opposite of what you are claiming.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    You better find a link, because I definitely was talking about massive broad spectrum dereg.

    Which the phone and airline cases were not, they targeted one company and one industry, respectively.

  • ||

    You better find a link, because I definitely was talking about massive broad spectrum dereg.

    No you find the link.

    Also how is broad spectrum dereg materially different?

    Are we to think we could start drinking raw milk or open a hair weaving business in Illinois and we would be ok but if we did both the economy would shrink?

    Again your "shock" and its cause and effects are ill defined. you seem to be saying that the loss of jobs among regulators and some sort of magic in regards to established benefited business would be harmed.

    The sad thing is that the loss of regulators is the more plausible of harming the economy. If established benefited businesses are harmed how are they harmed if not for the business going to the new competitors? The net is simply change not a loss. Perhaps without regulations then consumers will save more with the new competition....but what would consumers do with that savings if not spend for more stuff and more investment?

    In both zero sum left wing economics and supply side the economic gain would be plus not minus.

    Also the relaxation of labor laws (and production laws) during and after WW2 was broad spectrum deregulation.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    No you find the link.

    I'm not the one who's making the accusation.

  • 0073735963||

    "I'm not the one who's making the accusation."

    Yes, actually, you are. YOU were the one to claim the following

    "You're not giving the context. We were talking about massive immediate deregulation of all sectors simultaneously."

    YOU need to post a link to YOUR claim.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Total horse shit. Regulations produce economic dislocations. They allocate resources inefficiently, away from actual consumer desires. It is true that when deregulated, those dependent on the force and aggression of the govt for their livelihood will suffer temporarily, they will quickly adjust their behavior to comport with consumer desires. The quicker the deregulation, the quicker the recovery and adjustment to actual wants/needs of consumers.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    And the answer to your question is yes, I have always been this bad for dogmatic thinking.

  • ||

    yeah cus me saying that deregulation has historically (with examples) lead to an improved economy and Res Publica Americana statement that the constitution says what it actually says is dogmatic.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    The constitution definitely does not say that economic liberty is an enforceable right.

  • ||

    Are you fucking shitting me? Full circle, absolutely no gain.

    Corning, can you find a single right in the Constitution that comes with guidelines explaining how to "enforce" it?

    Fuck this shit. Seriously.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Justice Marshall did.

  • ||

    You couldn't write this shit. You really, really couldn't.

  • ||

    The constitution definitely does not say that economic liberty is an enforceable right.

    Regardless of your weird enforceable meme Res demonstrated that your claim about the 9th amendment is incorrect.

    Your claim:

    The 9th amendment was intended to enforce the enumerated powers doctrine, not enforce any unwritten rights.

    the actual text:

    "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

    anyway if you really want to find economic freedoms you can find them in constitutional text:

    The commerce clause as written is in fact not a clause at all but a guarantee against states limiting trade.

    The eminent domain clause is an economic right to property.

    The 14th amendment guarantees equal protection. As it is strictly written it forbids the government from treating one business of industry differently then another.

    Lastly the enumerated rights makes no distinction in its text between social and economic rights...that is a later interpretation....the freedom to advertise should be as unlimited as any speech according to the actual text and the more broad interpretation of the speech clause to include freedom of expression should have no limit between economic and social expression. How is buying and selling not expression that should be protected?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    "Price-fixing is okay when we do it."

  • Wholly Holy Cow||

    Well, gosh, that's why it's so important that all 429 Gary Johnson supporters get out there and vote!

    I mean, GJ's fantasy league SCOTUS picks are sure to be awesome. Yay Team That Makes Me Feel Special!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    OT: Nebraska third grader dresses 'in character' every day for school.

    Public School Official: This girl is too intelligent, creative, and unique. She must know there are consequences for such behavior.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I missed the part where the public school official said that. The article says the school is fine with it.

    Also, dissociative identity disorder is not a good thing.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I was making a joke/commentary with the public school official quote.

    Also, dissociative identity disorder is not a good thing.

    That was my first thought, but it seems to me that she's just very creative and expressing it in an unusual way. She comes from a theater family. So....*shrugs*

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    You'll be singing a different tune when she becomes a serial killer. Or a politician.

  • A Serious Man||

    She'll be picked up by the CIA and become a master of disguise like 'Alias'.

  • ||

    Or someone who dresses like every day is Halloween, because she is THAT awesome.

    That you can find something wrong with someone so free and original ...

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    OT: A 17-year old Chess prodigy busts stereotypes as she is both female and an Harlem-born and raised African-American. (And not bad to look at if you ask me).

    CNN commenters prove that the world needs cleansing through nuclear fire.

  • ||

    Thermonuclear, 100,000,000-megaton hyperfire. Instigated from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  • Sidd Finch||

    That's absurd. One person can't bust a stereotype. That's not how stereotypes work. And I've never heard of a 393rd ranked American junior described as a prodigy.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Oh?

    Just how do stereotypes work, pray tell?

  • Xenocles||

    1. Anything related to the stereotype that I see in a group member confirms the stereotype.

    2. If a group member exhibits a trait that runs counter to the stereotype then it's an exception that proves the rule.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Ah, silly me! All this time I've been using various rules of inference like modus tollens and modus ponens!

    Then again, what Sidd might be getting at is that stereotypes are not universals, which would be an interesting topic for debate.

  • Sidd Finch||

    Then again, what Sidd might be getting at is that stereotypes are not universals, which would be an interesting topic for debate.

    What else could "one person can't bust a stereotype" be getting at?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Fair enough.

    So the question is, how does one establish falsifiability for a stereotype?

  • ||

    If you've got three Mexican neighbors and two of them don't park on your lawn, the stereotype is invalid.

  • Sidd Finch||

    How does one generally establish falsifiability for a social science hypothesis?

  • ||

    One ingests copious quantities of alpha-methylphenethylamine and runs naked through the local elementary school.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    How does one generally establish falsifiability for a social science hypothesis?

    Heh. If I'm reading him correctly, Popper says you usually can't. But the field of social science we're dealing with matters. For example, if we're looking at the stereotype that "women tend not to be as good in Chess as men." then I think one could construct a psychological study with experiments that were falsifiable. For example, you could use mental chronometry to measure how long it took both men and women to do various cognitive tasks that make up Chess. If it takes women longer to do those takes, then you have evidence that supports the stereotype, if not, you have evidence it is false.

  • Sidd Finch||

    Why not just get a bunch of men and women and have them play each other, graph the results, draw some error bars ... profit?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Why not just get a bunch of men and women and have them play each other, graph the results, draw some error bars ... profit?

    Well, I'm trying to eliminate as many variables as possible. The mental chronometric approach is closer to how computers are starting to beat humans, as well. Now that processing power allows them to calculate more permutations per move.

  • ||

    The mental chronometric approach is closer to how computers are starting to beat humans, as well.

    "Starting"? I'm pretty damn good at chess -- I don't know anyone who can beat me more than occasionally -- and 20 years ago I bought a cheap Radio Shack chess player that beat me Every. Damn. Time.

    I can only imagine how good such programs are now.

  • Sidd Finch||

    Well, I'm trying to eliminate as many variables as possible.

    Stereotypes includes the variables though, at least in my troglodytic mind. Let's say we could precisely measure women's chess-related abilities. They match men perfectly, both median and variation. Except that women prefer Go to Chess (for whatever reason), so that women really are worse at chess even if in a world without Go that wouldn't be the case. Is the stereotype, "women tend not to be as good in Chess as men," any less accurate?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I was never good with audio equipment.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Really? You strike me as an audiophile geek type.

  • ||

    When he's not fantasizing about constitutions and sociopolitical histories that don't exist, he's busy doing this:

    http://www.cracked.com/blogima.....nties2.jpg

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    WHERE DID YOU GET MY PICTURE FROM?

  • ||

    Oops. Sorry. This one's Tulpa.

    http://static.fjcdn.com/pictur.....180529.jpg

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Funny, I always thought this was Tulpa.

  • ||

  • ||

    OT: A 17-year old Chess prodigy busts stereotypes as she is both female and an Harlem-born and raised African-American. (And not bad to look at if you ask me).

    More than "not bad" -- she is smoking hot.

  • ||

    prettygirl95

    I don't like black girls they are too loud and obnoxious I avoid them. Nice to see one that seems nice. Most blacks ruin any place they go and make me and my friends want to leave, just sayin.

    Ron Paul 2012

    Sick of stories like this. Let's hear the truth, that blacks are one eighth of the population but commit half of all violent crime, that they have twice the rate of unwed motherhood, fatherless children, etc. Good job at trying to paint a pretty face on an ugly race CNN. You don't fool me.

    I think left wingers at CNN are sock puppeting racists to give the impression that racism lives.
    Seriously you can find real racists at 4chan...and the above are not even remotely good cartoons of them.

  • ||

    I've never met a racist libertarian or Paul supporter. I've met innumerable progressive racists.

    My personal experiences definitely have me convinces. Sorry, Barry.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    The constitution definitely does not say that economic liberty is an enforceable right.

    ALL RIGHTS ARE GRANTED BY THE STATE

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Leaving aside the pin-dancing level question of where rights come from, you must recognize that if the state doesn't recognize a right, it is irrelevant to any real-world considerations. Of course, the state can be forced to recognize a right it would rather not, but that doesn't change the underlying dynamics.

  • SIV||

    shorter Tulpa:

    ALL RIGHTS ARE GRANTED BY THE STATE

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    I hear T O N Y 's shit being channeled here as well.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Doesn't matter whether they are or not.

    There are more important things in life than arguing about semantics, like ordering that carpet for my shower that they're showing on TV right now!

  • Bingo||

    You are seriously delusional.

    You made 52 posts in this thread nitpicking semantics. You obviously don't have more important things in life.

    With that amount of cognitive dissonance it's no wonder you are such a bootlicking apologist for government. Logic and ethics, not even once.

  • Cytotoxic||

    In this comment section, Tulpa shovels shit, gets called on it, and responds by shovelling exponentially more shit.

    John and Tulpa have had different reactions to the election season madness. After the Ryan pick, and Reason's discontent with him, he went full PANDORUM and was an insufferable ass-clown. 5-day tantrum of Red Tony and then it was mostly over, like a flash burn.

    Tulpa on the other hand has been slowly revving it up. Not always trying to burn at white hot retard, but getting retardeder and retardeder with time (please see the 'why we can't have good Samaritan laws' thread for reference'.) He's reaching much deeper retard power levels than John attained. He's going over 9000. If John's Red Tony Tulpa is Red MNG.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Great people talk about ideas; ordinary people talk about things; small-minded people talk about other people.

  • ||

    You're indirectly talking about other people here.

  • ||

    What if you talk about other people's inability to comprehend ideas?

  • ||

    cue:love and rockets channeling sartre or camus

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    And MNG was a good poster, especially compared to Tony. Unless you like echo chambers, which may indeed be the case.

  • Cytotoxic||

    MNG started good and gradually became bitchy and whiny and kinda mendacious. Who else does that sound like?

  • SIV||

    MNG
    RIP

  • ||

    Leaving aside the pin-dancing level question of where rights come from, you must recognize that if the state doesn't recognize a right, it is irrelevant to any real-world considerations.

    Really? The state doesn't recognize all sorts of my rights, which I nonetheless exercise anyway, keeping an eye out for cops.

    The right to smoke or ingest whatever substances I please.

    The right to travel where I please, at whatever speed I deem safe.

    And so on.

    Other criminal gangs besides the state also don't recognize certain of my rights. Still have them -- still exercise them.

  • Bingo||

    Why are you even arguing with him? Tulpa doesn't believe in the principle of self-ownership. The Supreme Court is the ultimate arbiter of what is just and lawful. He's a bootlicking authoritarian who prides himself on being "more correct" than you are, hence the goalpost-moving whenever he gets into a debate.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    There's a difference between having a right to do something and being able to get away with doing it if you're careful.

  • tagtann||

    Sometimes you jsut have to wonder man. Wow.
    www.Anon-Tipz.tk

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    So, "Apollo 18" - not bad. Not overdone. Not great - but not bad. On to "Alien v Predator". So far, meh.

  • ||

    Different. Liked it.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Really? Every review trashed it. Maybe I'l see it sometime.

  • ||

    Rotten tomatoes gave it 24%, both critics and public.

    I thought it was OK. Wouldn't pay money to rent it, but on one of the free sites, sure ...

  • SIV||

    It's getting harder to find movies w/o some effort. I couldn't find a free copy of Aliens last night so I had to settle for Event Horizon.

    I should rip my DVDs and put them on a harddrive along with all my digital files for all these hotels with shitty cable. Now back to La Setta. Soavi is no Argento but it stands up to repeated viewings.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    Yeah, "Event Horizon" is creepy and scary. "Apollo 18" is no "Event Horizon", but I thought it was good.

    "Alien v Predator" not bad, but not as interesting as "Apollo 18". Now watching original "Predator". "GET TO THA CHOPPAH!"

  • ||

    You're all a bunch of slack jawed faggots! This stuff will make you a sexual Tyrannosaurus. Just like me!

  • Robert||

    Is there not the danger that the US Sup. Ct. could say that among the legitimate powers of gov't is to help some people to the detriment of others just because it's the nature of politics to make friends y enemies? And that that state of affairs is implicit in any system allowing the governed to have a say in their gov't collectively, so that in establishing such a system that was part of the intention? So that they could say that if even one person is benefited at everyone else's expense, that very benefit makes the law constitutional (barring any other constitutional provision to the contrary)?

    This is not a facetious question.

  • ||

    And of course rights have to be enforced. Someone has to stop the men with guns from coming to your door and throwing you into a cage.

    Since the criminal gang that is the state is by far the most likely to be the one sending men with guns to my door and throwing me in a cage for no good reason, I do not feel comforted by your baseless assertion that the state is going to protect me against their own agents.

  • SIV||

    So is there a tsunami in Seattle yet?

  • ||

    there is definitely some wild rumpusing going on outside

  • ||

    in re: above, rights exist independent of whether the scotus recognizes them. but, it is correct to say that when they don't, PRACTICALLY speaking those rights do not exist or at least are not treated like they exist. but ... fuck the scotus. they don't determine what my rights are. rights exist independent of them.

    people in europe may not have courts that recognize free speech(they do not have such courts), but free speech is still a natural right, and the courts SHOULD recognize it, as another example.

  • Bingo||

    fuck the scotus. they don't determine what my rights are. rights exist independent of them.

    Yup, agreed, but do you understand the logical conclusion of that statement? Right exist independent of the SCOTUS. What else??

  • ||

    there are a # of logical conclusions. one is that free men, of moral conscience should and do choose to break laws. they must accept that there can be punishment if caught, but that's the tradeoff they make. they also recognize that only by pushing back against laws that restrict natural rights, is any change made for the positive. pushing back to make change, though, isn't generally done by a million individuals choosing to break law X (like possessing MJ where it is illegal) but by concerted efforts.

    imagine if RIGHT NOW every single person in my county who smokes MJ went downtown seattle, plopped themselves down in a small 2 block radius area - and started smoking it. conscientious objection. even IF the SPD decided to make arrests (and recall that the city has a policy that MJ is NOT to receive primary enforcement, that it is a lesser concern, etc. passed as a city council resolution), they couldn't. in a county of 1.7 million people there are probably several hundred thousand they would have to deal with.

    THAT would effect change. coordinated effort like that.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    A right that is not enforced is an angel dancing on a pinhead.

  • Bingo||

    fuck the scotus. they don't determine what my rights are. rights exist independent of them.

    Yup, agreed, but do you understand the logical conclusion of that statement? Right exist independent of the SCOTUS. What else??

  • ||

    Oh, oh, OH, OH! ME! ME! I know this one! ME!

    Is it GOVERNMENT?

  • ||

    yea, that too.

    that is a fundamental precept OF our govt. govt. is simply a tool we use to protect those rights that already naturally exist, as well as performing "housekeeping" functions like making a national currency, settling disputes (civil courts), and placing limits on behavior that negatively affects others - laws against assault, theft, etc. with a recognition that LAWS should be targeted towards suppressing actions where person(s) interfere with other person(s) freedoms, NOT to protect them from "themselves" first and foremost.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    This is a useful delusion for society to have. But it does not describe reality.

  • ||

    it doesn't describe society. nor does it describe, unfortunately, our present government/governance. correct. it describes how/why our govt. was FOUNDED. that's why i said precept.

    federalism erosion, commerce clause expansion, etc. have left us with a govt. that would be practically unrecognizable to our founders.

    bong hits for jesus, raich, kelo, and all those penumbras and emanations?

    jesus, what a mess. one and all willing to compromise the principals of our govt. in order to get a result - results based government is just as bad as results based analysis vis a vis uof or legal analysis. it erodes the sacred (yes, SACRED) underpinnings.

  • tagtann||

    The Supreme Kangaroo court cracks me up man!

    www.Anon-Yes.tk

  • شات عراقنا||

    thank you

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