June 27, 2012
Now we are seeing a radical change in the United States. This is certainly not a change for the better. What is this change and why is it so bad?
The change we are seeing is the death of the individual state.
Our founding fathers envisioned a union of states with a weak national government and stronger state governments. There were certain things that a national government would be required to do, such as regulate trade (the Constitution is very explicit about this) and provide for the common defense.
One of the greatest quotes about the individual states came from then Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis who called the states, “The laboratories of democracy.”
Brandeis’ idea was simple. The states were sovereign and could compete with each other for the best ideas.
Today, the laboratory of democracy is closed. Today, the sovereignty of individual states is dying. The only question is when will the actual death occur.
State sovereignty has been on the wane for decades. As the power of the Federal Government grew, the power of state governments diminished. At first this was slow and gradual. Much of it was done voluntarily, as states gave up their rights in exchange for federal tax dollars.
On Monday, the Supreme Court decided the case of Arizona v. the United States and five unelected people in little black dresses gave the deathblow to state sovereignty.
Antonin Scalia writing his dissent said that. He wrote that the majority’s decision, “deprives States of what most would consider the defining characteristic of sovereignty: the power to exclude from the sovereign’s territory people who have no right to be there. Neither the Constitution itself nor even any law passed by Congress supports this result.”
Today, state lines are becoming little more than antiquated lines on a map. Pretty soon, the only power a state will have is the ability to make license plates.
Lawyers often say bad cases make bad law. Arizona was a bad case. Arizona had no choice but to bring its lawsuit. We can lay the blame for this one right at the feet of Barack Obama and the Party of Treason.
However, when we talk about assaults on state sovereignty, the Party of Treason is not alone in this. Many of the big government expansions that have eroded state sovereignty have occurred under Republican Presidents.
If the Republicans are successful in taking the White House and the Senate (they will keep the House), then we will see the next incarnation of attacks on state sovereignty.
That will come in the form of Federal Tort Reform. Some Republicans want to impose Federal Tort Reform on all of the states.
Many people have a knee jerk reaction to tort reform. Oh, we don’t like the trial lawyers. We don’t like lawyers, period. Let’s hurt the lawyers.
Since 1787, states have regulated state courts. Since 1787, states have regulated licensed professionals in those states including doctors, lawyers and others. In Federal Court, unless there is a lawsuit governed by a specific federal statute, state law controls the federal courts. Lawyers cannot be admitted to practice before federal courts until they are admitted before the highest court of one of the states.
To allow the Federal Government to impose tort reform on the states wipes out some of the last vestiges of state sovereignty, namely the ability to make its own laws.
State sovereignty has always been the bulwark against they tyranny of a massive federal government. Our founding fathers knew that. That is why they purposefully made the Federal Government weak.
In the last century, citizens have stood by and watched as the Federal Government grew at the expense of the state government. As the power of the Federal Government grew, the freedom of the citizen diminished.
As of Monday, state sovereignty is pretty much dead. The only question now is when do we start calling our nation The United State of America?