In short: Yes, Congress has the constitutional right to make you eat your fruits and veggies. Forget freedom; if the government chooses to be coercive, the government can coerce.
Ms. Kagan hemmed and hawed about whether the Constitution should be interpreted in the context of natural rights as described in the Declaration of Independence. Mr. Coburn asserted "that we have certain God-given, inalienable rights that aren't given in the Constitution, that they're ours, ours alone, and that the government doesn't give those to us." The best Ms. Kagan could do in reply was to provide a jumbled double-negative: "I'm not saying I do not believe that there are rights preexisting the Constitution and the laws, but ..."
Indeed, Ms. Kagan's record indicates that she doubts the Constitution serves preexisting rights. She has spoken of government "redistribut[ing] expression" and of "dol[ing] out" speech rights "as favors." On economics, she wrote, "corporate wealth derives from privileges bestowed on corporations by the government. ... Individual wealth also derives from government action."
Ms. Kagan seems to think the federal government is responsible for just about anything and has the power to dictate just about everything in the realm of speech or economics. It's not a set of beliefs fit for a Supreme Court justice.
Thursday, July 08, 2010
From today's Washington Times: