From the beginning, the best hope for Obamacare to survive was that Chief Justice John Roberts would stare history in the face and back down. No matter how much blather you heard about Justice Anthony Kennedy, the so-called “swing vote” who has grown less connected to reality with every passing day, the reality is that this is the “Roberts Court”ad the Chief Justice has a vested interest in how it is perceived, now and in the future.
Having already seen the Supremes seriously damaged by the abominable 2000 Bush v. Gore decision which rode roughshod over that most sacred of legal stands, precedence, in a clearly political fashion, and understanding that the Citizens United decision, also decided on a political basis, had seriously undermined the Court’s gravity and reputation, the Chief Justice would be more concerned about his place in history that in pleasing the right wing nutcases and behave like, well, a Supreme Court Justice. That was the hope.
And so it was.
The best part, really, the best part, was Antonin Scalia’s crazed dissent. That sucker is straight out crazy and an embarrassment to the entire legal system. He, and Kennedy, are walking adverts for term limits. That’s an idea that once was unthinkable but this court, over the last 15 years or so is a living, semi-breathing reason to take the road never yet taken. The Supreme Court is no longer a cherished American Ideal (seriously, Clarence Thomas sits among them). It is seen, rightly, as just another political entity, and that is a right wing accomplishment. Well done, jackasses.
A serious historian, a decade or two down the road, is going to paint the terrible truth about what was done to the American Dream by the billionaires who brought us Reagan, Bush I and II, Rove and their ilk and left us, in the 21st Century, with a Congress and body politic peopled with an inordinate number of individuals who appear to be so disconnected from reality as to be certifiable insane. As I have said before, I’ve urged my grandchildren to learn as many other languages as they can and be prepared to move elsewhere.
The terrible truth may turn out to be that today’s events will, in the end, serve to activate the uninformed and enraged with the result that what still appears to be a very close election could be turned around. It is improbable to me that the likes of Mitt Romney could be voted into the White House, but I felt that way about George W. Bush as well, so who knows?