Thursday, June 28, 2012

Class-based Hypocrisy from the Supreme Court

Mikaela says:

Had to archive this little gem from the Washington Post.  It's so surprising that the rule came in favor of the universal healthcare mandate, although a somewhat cynical friend speculated that right-leaning Chief Justice Roberts may have framed the ruling as constitutional only under the taxation clause as a short-term tactic toward the long-term strategy of wiping out taxation and anything hanging on it eventually. Sigh.  For the moment, though, hurray, America! You've joined other civilized nations in protecting the health of your own citizens.  Long time in coming...

But in the midst of diving around various analyses of the healthcare case, here was this about another recent ruling by this court:

Taken in context with the conservative majority’s other recent rulings, Alito’s majority opinion [in Knox v. Service Employees International Union, Local 1000] revealed the most class-based double standard the court has exhibited since before the New Deal. In the 2010 case Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission — rendered by the same five justices who signed onto Alito’s ruling inKnox — the court ruled that corporations could directly spend their resources on political campaigns. These two decisions mean that a person who goes to work for the unionized Acme Widget Company can refuse to pay for the union’s intervention in political campaigns but has no recourse to reclaim the value of his labor that Acme reaps and opts to spend on political campaigns. Citizens United created a legal parity between companies and unions — both are free to dip into their treasuries for political activities — but Knox creates a legal disparity between them: a worker’s free-speech right entitles him to withhold funds from union campaign and lobbying activities, but not the value of his work from the company’s similar endeavors.

Does that not just kill you?  With the good comes the bad, I guess.  Holding my nose as I party...