In the Ronald Reagan movie Kings Row, Reagan plays Drake McHugh, whose legs are sawn off by a sadistic, class-conscious doctor.
Everyone remembers the line “Where’s the rest of me?” No remembers what happens after that. I’ll fill you in.
McHugh’s best friend, a psychiatrist, decides to tell McHugh (Reagan) the truth: his legs were perfectly healthy, but the doctor cut them off to keep the lower class McHugh from pursuing the doctor’s debutante daughter.
Instead of sinking into self-pity, McHugh laughs and rallies.
The movie made Reagan a star. Kings Row also gives us the perfect narrative for our response to the Supreme Court’s Obamacare decision: laugh and rally.
The conservative grassroots in the USA was already complacent before the decision. C’mon, admit it. You expected the Supremes to strike down the individual mandate, at least. Then you expected everyone to pile on Obama for wasting three years. Then you expected Romney to waltz into the White House. And we’d all live happily ever after.
But happily ever after is relative. Yes, you can live happily ever after without your legs, but you can’t imagine it until they’re gone.
In this TED talk, Harvard’s Dan Gilbert explains an amazing phenomenon that Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman describes brilliantly: Nothing is as bad as we think it is while we’re thinking about it.
So what’s so great about the decision?
The Supreme Court just reminded us that our life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness depend solely on us. A republican form of government—a government of democratically elected representatives—requires constant vigilance from its citizens. On autopilot, the representatives of the people become oligarchs, until one oligarch emerges as the despot. That’s the natural order of things: domination by the connected through force.
The Supreme Court ruled that Congress can use the tax code to force us to do anything it wishes—buy a car, sell a car, paint our houses purple. If you don’t like that, then vote for people who don’t want to decide what color your house should be or how often you should go to the doctor.
You want to live free? Vote for people who want you to live free.
And convince 50% + 1 of the people around you to do likewise.
I’ll leave you with JD Wilson’s photos from our post-Obamacare flash rally in Forest Park on Thrusday.