After 4 years and 4 months of bubbling and stewing in the Supreme Court of The United States, a verdict came down. It landed like a watermelon falling from the top deck, onto the parking lot of Jack Murphy Stadium; “Mandatory enrollment in federally managed insurance policy is unconstitutional”, the antiseptic decree maintained. It took more than a month, but when it sank into the public consciousness, everyone wanted to know if the same rationale didn’t apply to Social Security too. Nobody thought it was a stretch.
It was March, 2016. The President was in the last year of his 2nd term and he was ready to move on. He was tired of the shallow excuses for obstruction and the seeds of hatred that had been sown in a political battle that had taken the country to the brink of bankruptcy and social revolt.
In an uncharacteristic act of all or nothing, the President had, in a soul wrenching, fire fanning populist appeal, turned loose a human conflagration of hatred and disgust, and focused it on the elitist arrogance of the Rodgers Court. He told an anxious nation that the unfortunate decision left him no choice or Constitutional grounds to continue the Social Security Act and that he had ordered a dismantling of the program. Both collections and payments would be winding down, starting in 90 days, unless the Court reversed its ruling. The reaction was immediate and came from every corner of the country.
Within a week of the speech, the Supreme Court was surrounded by an unruly, massive mob people from every walk of life: retirees, guardians of orphaned teenage children, the disabled, veterans and workers in their 40’s & 50’s preparing for retirement after decades in increasingly confining jobs. The crowd numbered in the 100s of thousands and pulsated with outrage, disgust and focused anger. Adding to the tension was the order issued by the President to the Army: ‘protect the rights of the Protestors to assemble and voice their concerns.’ …..
This, of course, is a fairytale.