montesquieued perceptions of government overreach

missouri court strikes down DHSS covid rules as unconstitutional and antithetical to liberty and just government

a missouri court just struck down the department of health and senior services covid dictates in resounding fashion. see full ruling HERE. it’s a wonderful document. when a judge starts quoting montesquieu, you know you’re in for a treat…

let’s look:

firstly, the framing is quite strong. this is not about some public good or amorphous aggregation fallacy. this is “you’re an unelected official who has usurped the prerogative of the legislature AND the executive and thereby circumvented the will of the people and rendered it moot.”

you have assumed unfettered power.

and you don’t get to do that.

it gets better, because here comes monty:

now THAT is a proper judicial ruling. nothing mamby pamby here.

you do not get to create petty tyrants accountable to no one and leave them as suzerains over a public who had no say in their election much less an opportunity to consent (or more importantly, dissent) to such governance.

it keeps getting better:

vague and overbroad justifications rooted in “necessary, appropriate, and public convenience” are insufficient and invite both hand waving and the conjuring of hobgoblins.

vast emergency powers comprise an attractive nuisance. leave them lying around and you have incented the power hungry to gin up emergencies and to keep them going in perpetuity.

he cites a ruling i had not seen from pennsylvania this year:

federal courts agree:

read that last point. now ask: how much of covid diktat can survive that criterion?

they get wonderfully specific:

put simply:

this is the only place in which i really start to diverge:

i do not care if it’s one bureaucrat or the entire legislature: the rights of the people stand paramount to it.

validating that a taking of rights is popular by washing it through a democratically elected body or executive makes it no less a taking of rights and this ruling leaves open the door to such trespass by legislatures.

rights exist for the express purpose of protecting the individual from tyranny and encroachment into personal agency. this is especially true of tyranny of the majority and of the actions of the state.

it represents the express purpose of rights and as such can and must be a binary issue.

either your rights are inalienable or they are not.

either they are intrinsic to your personhood and sacrosanct from violation by the state or they are not.

and if they are not, then they are not rights at all. they are merely privileges.

you are not a citizen. you are a subject.

and THAT is critical to remember. there is always some edge case, some use of speech or liberty that you hate.

they will come to you and they will say “surely this goes too far and is not what you had in mind when protecting a right to speak. let’s just limit this one thing!”

this is the thin end of a wedge.

grant even one exception and your rights are no longer rights. they have become grants of license. the state is now paramount, not the individual.

the rest is just negotiating your bed time, chores, and whether you can go to bobby’s house this weekend with mom.

but look, this is a real step in the right direction. it GUTS future emergency power usurpation by unelected health officials. it leaves very little wiggle room.

now we just need to expand it to the rest of the state.

the grave disappointment here is how long it took to get decisions like this. where was this in march of 2020? 18 months is an awfully long time to let these popinjay despots run amok over the lives and livelihoods of we the people before we get our day in court and a chance at our lives back.

that needs to be fixed. this needs to be headed off when it starts, not declared void after 18 months of predation and tyranny.

give that some thought. because this WILL arise again.