If you’ve seen Moonrise Kingdom, you might recognize this song from the soundtrack, about escaping the harsh realities of life with art. It’s probably the appropriate accompaniment to James Fallows’ piece on whether the US has been undergoing a coup.
Underscoring the point, a Bloomberg poll of 21 constitutional scholars found that 19 of them believe the individual mandate is constitutional, but only eight said they expected the Supreme Court to rule that way. The headline nicely conveys the reality of the current Court: “Obama Health Law Seen Valid, Scholars Expect Rejection.”
How would you characterize a legal system that knowledgeable observers assume will not follow the law and instead will advance a particular party-faction agenda? That’s how we used to talk about the Chinese courts when I was living there. Now it’s how law professors are describing the Supreme Court of the John Roberts era.
When the Supreme Court puts a torpedo in the side of HCR, I’d suggest spending some time with Winterreise, Death and the Maiden, and a bottle of Scotch, because the music of someone who died of syphillis at age 31 strikes about the right tone for the country we’ve become.