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BlueCarp

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Neither tort reform nor the “War on Drugs” trump the Tenth Amendment

It is de rigueur for some politicians to declare themselves believers in constitutionally limited government.

It seems this belief is limited, all too often, when the principles of constitutionally limited government conflict with something they believe to be a “great idea.”  Apparently “great ideas” trump the constitution. 
Many Republicans are proponents of tort reform. They believe frivolous lawsuits drive up the cost of doing business and that capping damages in civil lawsuits is a great idea.
There is such a bill pending in Congress. It would

“…put a three-year statute of limitations on medical lawsuits, cap non-economic damages at $250,000, and limit punitive damages to $250,000 or twice the economic damages, whichever is greater. It would apply to lawsuits in federal and state courts…”

Apparently this is such a great idea it trumps the Constitution. 
Nowhere among the enumerated powers of Article I, Section 8 is Congress given the authority to tell states how to run their civil justice systems. To argue that the Commerce Clause authorizes Congress to do so is a purely progressive notion. It is a repudiation of the Tenth Amendment. It is  repudiation of a constitutionally limited government. 
Yet it is Republicans, the party that proclaims itself the “limited government” party, that is behind this bill.
Those Republicans in favor of this bill believe tort reform trumps the Constitution.
They either do not understand what they are doing or they have very malleable principles.
Likewise, any congressperson proclaiming to be a believer in the Tenth Amendment should be working to defund the DEA’s effort to crack down on medical marijuana providers in states that have legalized the plant for such use.  To the extent marijuana is planted, cultivated, harvested, sold and consumed entirely within a state, one cannot be consistent and support both the DEA enforcement of these federal laws and the Tenth Amendment. The federal government has zero legitimate authority to enforce federal laws against such medical marijuana. (Yes, I know the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled to the contrary. However, the Supreme Court can declare the sun is the moon, but it does not make it so.)
The current conflict between the DEA and state law presents an excellent opportunity for states to assert their sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment. Colorado, for example, should tell the federal government that enforcement of federal marijuana laws in Colorado is ultra vires and msut be stopped. If the feds persist, the federal agents acting unconstitutionally should be arrested by local or state law enforcement. 
Of course, such action in Colorado would require not only a principled belief in the Constitution, it requires balls. Sadly, both are entirely lacking among state officials.
It's foolish to stall federal aid."

I will tell what is really foolish: A system of federal government that takes money from individuals throughout the country, takes a cut off the top (you know, for "expenses"), then dangles some of that money in front of states that must agree to jump through whatever ridiculous hoops the policy makers in the District of Columbia have deemed necessary in order for the state to get back a small portion of the money taken from it when the process began.

Lewis Carroll would have had a hard time imagining such absurdity.

"Federal aid" is Newspeak. It is no "aid" to get back your own money. "Federal aid" is simply extortion. The feds say they'll return some of the state's money if the state does what it is "asked" to do. Organized crime figures say they will let you keep your business and your knee caps if you do what you are "asked" to do.

It's an offer we can't refuse.

Luckily, legislators like Rep. Jim Kerr, who is quoted in the Post editorial, are at least mulling it over before accepting the offer.

The Post goes on to say that state legislators are entitled to their opinion about Obamacare but "they also need to accept the reality that it's the law of the land."

Applying that misguided logic, the Post would tell a battered spouse that she should just accept the reality that she is in an abusive relationship. You will only make it worse if you resist, right? Accept the abuse. It is the reality.

No. No more.

It is time for Colorado, and other states that are tired of submissively accepting unlawful federal expansion of power, to stand up to the unlawful usurpation of power exercised by the federal government. It is time to assert the Tenth Amendment. It is time to resurrect these dead letters:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

There is no constitutional authority for the feds to tell any state that it must implement a system to facilitate the mandatory purchase of a private product. If the United States Supreme Court says otherwise, that there is such authority within the commerce clause, they might as well say that the sun is the moon and that black is white. It will be just as true.

It is time to listen to Thomas Jefferson, who, in the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, wrote:

... where powers are assumed [by the federal government] which have not been delegated [to it by the Constitution], a nullification of the act is the rightful remedy: that every State has a natural right in cases not within the compact, (casus non fœderis) to nullify of their own authority all assumptions of power by others within their limits

Nullify now.

BlueCarp

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It’s time to refuse federal demands.

The editorial in today’s Denver Post  laments some state legislators’ hesitation to submit to federal requirements in order to obtain money to implement the Affordable Care Act. The Post headline declares “It’s foolish to stall federal aid.”

I will tell what is really foolish: A system of federal government that takes money from individuals throughout the country, takes a cut off the top (you know, for “expenses”), then dangles some of that money in front of states that must agree to jump through whatever ridiculous hoops the policy makers in the District of Columbia have deemed necessary in order for the state to get back a small portion of the money taken from it when the process began.

Lewis Carroll would have had a hard time imagining such absurdity.

“Federal aid” is Newspeak. It is no “aid” to get back your own money. “Federal aid” is simply extortion. The feds say they’ll return some of the state’s money if the state does what it is “asked” to do. Organized crime figures say they will let you keep your business and your knee caps if you do what you are “asked” to do.

It’s an offer we can’t refuse.

Luckily, legislators like Rep. Jim Kerr, who is quoted in the Post editorial, are at least mulling it over before accepting the offer.

The Post goes on to say that state legislators are entitled to their opinion about Obamacare but “they also need to accept the reality that it’s the law of the land.”

Applying that misguided logic, the Post would tell a battered spouse that she should just accept the reality that she is in an abusive relationship. You will only make it worse if you resist, right? Accept the abuse. It is the reality.

No. No more.

It is time for Colorado, and other states that are tired of submissively accepting unlawful federal expansion of power, to stand up to the unlawful usurpation of power exercised by the federal government. It is time to assert the Tenth Amendment. It is time to resurrect these dead letters:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

There is no constitutional authority for the feds to tell any state that it must implement a system to facilitate the mandatory purchase of a private product. If the United States Supreme Court says otherwise, that there is such authority within the commerce clause, they might as well say that the sun is the moon and that black is white. It will be just as true.

It is time to listen to Thomas Jefferson, who, in the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, wrote:

… where powers are assumed [by the federal government] which have not been delegated [to it by the Constitution], a nullification of the act is the rightful remedy: that every State has a natural right in cases not within the compact, (casus non fœderis) to nullify of their own authority all assumptions of power by others within their limits

Nullify now.