The Revenge of Darth Ben

Darth Ben returns to LDS Liberty to make the case that Latter-day Saints should be rejoicing over the recent Supreme Court decision to uphold Obamacare.  Darth Ben claims that since the Lord inspired the creation of the Constitution and Obamacare was implemented by following the mechanics of the Constitution, then Latter-day Saints should be eagerly supporting this legislation.  Listen to JC and Jeremy courageously defend the Republic from this onslaught of tyranny through the teaching of principles regarding the proper role of government.

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21 Responses to The Revenge of Darth Ben

  1. Aaron Sellers says:

    You guys ought to see if you could get Joe Lyon onto your show. He has great understanding of how the government creates laws that are constitutional on their face, but are systematically mal-applied to persons upon whom they do not apply. Such is the case with ObamaCare.

  2. John says:

    Wow …. Darth Ben really needs to understand the definition of RIGHTS. His comment that “your brothers and sisters just gave you a new right, JC” was just PROFOUNDLY ignorant and downright insulting (to God, who endowed us with our rights).

    Talk about “walking in darkness at noon-day” ….

    • Jon says:

      John, Instead of ad hominens, about some constructive commentary like, “Our rights come from such and such and here is a quote.” Like below:

      Hey Darth Ben, Did you know our rights are inalienable and don’t come from man? As Thomas Jefferson said below:

      “the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them”

      Darth Ben, this an old tradition that precedes our current government over thousands of years.

      Best Regards,

      John

  3. Chelsea says:

    Is he truly serious? Ben, I don’t hate you but I do think you are severely misguided. When something is unconstitutional, it is unconstitutional. It is a fact. Just because the court upheld an unconstitutional “tax” does not suddenly make it constitutional.

    • Ben says:

      Isn’t it set up as a system of checks an balances that the supreme courts determines what is Constitutional and what is not? So when they rule something as Constitutional, it is in fact Constitutional. The Supreme Court possesses the authority to make such rulings.

    • Jon says:

      Chelsea,

      Logic and reason are better arguments, see my comment to John.

  4. Jon says:

    Darth Ben,

    God said it is not right that one man enslave another (see Ammon inviting the Anti-nephi-lehis to come live in the land of the Nephites). We own our own bodies. Therefore, an extension of our bodies is our property. Therefore, it is not OK to hurt someone else, nor their property, as embodied by the non-aggression principle, or the commandment to love one another as Jesus loves you. Therefore any tax is contrary, by definition, to God’s law. In the end we are just enslaving one another, as the scriptures say. Let me know if you want references to the multiple scriptures I alluded to.

    • Ben says:

      I don’t argue that some rights are inalienable. Those I’d agree are endowed by God. Other rights are provided by man. Free travel across states, going to school (k-12), clean air and water, and voting are a few rights that I’d argue are not God provided, but man provided.

      As it relates to enslaving and property, what about render unto Caesar that which is Caesars and following the laws of the land? I don’t think the Lord would ask us to obey the laws of the land, inspire a Constiution, and then expect us to be enslaved and robbed by the very laws that come from this inspiration. One of these things don’t fit. Of things that are 1000 of years old, how about Korihor and the belief that what we earn and accomplish is due to our own ability. Perhaps we’d recognize our participation in society more if we’d recognize the Lords hand more in our abundances.

      • Joy says:

        Caesar took tribute, as from slaves to the emperor. Are we, then, slaves to the State? As to what the Lord expected, yes, indeed, he EXPECTED us to become wicked, for that’s what he showed Moroni. Even our modern day prophets have warned again and again that we are abandoning the principles of the Constitution. John Adams said the Constitution was made for a righteous people, that it could not survive otherwise. Are the United States a righteous people? Do a righteous people practice socialism? Our prophets have said NO. Do a righteous people practice abortion? Do they practice and preach same-sex marriage? Again, the prophets have said NO.

        Do you really think that just because the forms have been followed that the law is therefore in accordance with God’s will? Roe v Wade went through the same litmus test you propose. Does that mean killing the unborn is in accordance with God’s will?

        The rule of the judges was set up by King Mosiah, yet, in time, the judges became corrupt and perverted the law. We are seeing that today, but with all three branches of the federal government.

        Your whole argument is based upon faulty logic.

  5. Mark H. says:

    If the logic of Darth Ben is correct (Contitutional process = righteous law), then Abortion = righteous law.

    Mosiah 29:26 is not absolute, it says “not common”. That infers that there are times were the voice of the poeple will choose iniquity. So, the warning in vs. 27 of when “not common” occurs.

    God will blesses us according to our voluntary charity. Satan wanted forced obedience. Obamacare has nothing to do with helping poeple, it is about control, power & redistribution.

  6. Aaron says:

    Fantastic podcast, as usual! Thank you, JC and Jeremy for trying to educate people on the US Constitution and the Plan of Salvation. Darth Ben, I will pray for you. In the mean time, I offer these comments for your consideration: President John Taylor said the following as a commentary of Doctrine and Covenants section 98, verses 4-7:
    “It is said in the Doctrine and Covenants, that he that keepeth the laws of God, hath no need to break the laws of the land [D&C 58:21]. It is further explained in section 98 [D&C 98], what is meant in relation to this. That all laws which are constitutional must be obeyed, as follows:
    [Insert D&C 98:4–7]
    “That is taking this nation as an example, all laws that are proper and correct, and all obligations entered into which are not violative of the constitution should be kept inviolate. But if they are violative of the constitution, then the compact between the rulers and the ruled is broken and the obligation ceases to be binding. Just as a person agreeing to purchase anything and to pay a certain amount for it, if he receives the article bargained for, and does not pay its price, he violates his contract; but if he does not receive the article he is not required to pay for it.” – Pres. John Taylor
    There, then, by the mouth of the holy prophets may be a difference between that which is legal and that which is Constitutional. May I submit the law forbidding the celestial order of marriage by the federal government as further evidence of this principle.
    Supreme Court Justice John Marshall in 1803 said the following about the constitutionality of laws:
    “Certainly all those who have framed written constitutions contemplate them as forming the fundamental and paramount law of the nation, and consequently the theory of every such government must be, that an act of the legislature repugnant to the constitution is void.” – Justice John Marshall, Marbury vs. Madison, 1803
    There again, from the mouth of a Supreme Court Justice, is evidence of the possibility of a law being enacted but which possesses no Constitutional backing, i.e., being ILLEGAL. Illegal because any law or act of government that infringes or limits the freedoms of any one of our Heavenly Father’s children is in direct violation of our precious Constitution (see again D&C 98:5) is of no force and null and void! They may be enforced by the wicked against mankind, it is true, but as long as you do not provide material or tacit support, it is they alone who will be punished by the Lord for that act. What a marvelous system of government the Lord has blessed us with, if we only take time to study the Book of Mormon, the words of our prophets, and the Constitution!

  7. James Tunnell says:

    I would like to point out that the “voice of the people” in this case is not directly involved in making laws. We live in a republic. I believe there is actually a lot of dissent regarding Obamacare, but that can’t directly strike the law. We don’t democratically create nor destroy laws in this country, so your comparison to Mosiah 29:26 is questionable.

    Even granting your assumption that the voice of the people does desire the creation of Obamacare, it does not follow that those who disagree should sit back, not oppose the law, and not try to convince supporters to change their mind. It fine to suggest that we need a conversation between opposing viewpoints, but when one side gets enough votes to pass a law for their side, it does not mean the conversation is over or that any argument has been won. Might does not make right.

  8. Jim Davis says:

    I think it would have been helpful to first discuss the difference between malum in se (wrong in itself) and malum prohibitum (wrong because it’s prohibited). Ben kept referring to the legality of Obamacare while JC and Jeremy kept referring to the morality of Obamacare. If they would have separated the arguments earlier there would have been less time wasted going in circles.

    As far as the legality of it goes- sure, the supreme court made a decision that Obamacare is constitutional. Umpires make bad calls too and their decisions usually stick but that doesn’t mean they’re right. There’s this fallacy being spread lately that if you aren’t a constitutional lawyer than your interpretation of the constitution is obsolete. It reminds me of the Medieval Catholic church that tried retaining power to interpret scripture to themselves. Even they subverted the true meanings of the “rule book” for their own benefit. They were the “authority” just like the supreme court is the authority but that doesn’t make them right all of the time or the rest of our constitutional viewpoints as obsolete.

    I’m fairly certain this country is being afflicted-not that the “let’s do what we want and wait and see if God afflicts us” train of thought makes any sense. It’s the same train of thought that our legislative and executive branches take. They do whatever they want and if the supreme court doesn’t stop them then (to them) it must mean it’s legal. If this were true, though, what would be the point of members of congress and the president of swearing an oath to defend and uphold the constitution? If it were merely a judicial responsibility then shouldn’t they be the only ones taking the oath?

    I doubt whether Ben was being sincere in his arguments but I have had encounters similar to this. I can empathize with Jeremy and JC stumbling to rebuttal such skewed arguments. Some friends once asked me why I believed pre-marital sex is wrong and I thought it was so obvious that I struggled finding a clear and concise way of explaining it.

  9. K.L. Adams says:

    Darth Ben’s assertion that psuedo-conservative Justice Roberts upholding Obama-care supports his argument that Obama-care was inspired ignores the fact that the court issued a split decision, and that FOUR of the justices eloquently argued against the constitutionality of Obama-care. Roberts followed the precedence of other phony “conservatives” on the court who “surprised” a gullible populace with bizarre rulings.

    Also ignored in the discussion is the political construct of a Court that had been recently packed with two Obama appointees seated by the same Congress that rammed the largely un-read Obama-care package down the throats of Americans. For decades justices that have sworn to uphold the Constitution have turned around after their swearing in to break that oath as they denigrated it or declared its inferiority to foreign laws or even science fads; some of those justice are currently serving on the court and voted to foist their convoluted opinion with the force of law onto America

    Darth-Ben also ignores the fact that many of the representatives that enacted Obamacare were defeated in the the 2010 election precisely because they had voted for the abomination. Too bad that JC and Jeremy missed the opportunity to point this out, and to remind Darth Ben that Obama-care would not have passed in the current Congress. Ben’s argument ignores the historical record that many of the socialist/fascist members of Congress that passed Obama care were booted out by the people who elected representatives more in accord with their views.

    I commend JC and Jeremy for drawing attention to the dangers of a democracy that create the fickle responses that are becoming commonplace in a sham republic.

    A final point. I would argue with Darth Ben that the judgments of God are being passed upon this people. We are experiencing drought and abnormal weather that has compounded the unprecedented destruction of farms, manufactures, forests and homes, to say nothing of economic calamity at home and abroad. The industries of death and violence are thriving, from war and mayhem to abortion and euthanasia. The morals of the people are largely corrupted evidenced by the expanse of sleeze, cohabitation, divorce, desertion, gambling, prostitution (in and out of government) .

    Darth Ben’s arguments ring very close to those made in 1 Nephi 17:22; Mosiah 11:27–29; 12:9-15; Alma 9:2–5; 21:5-6. Let us be wary lest the judgments pronounced in Helaman 13:12–39 be poured out upon our heads as well.

  10. Jeff M says:

    As Ronald Reagan said about liberals like Darth Ben, “Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but they know so much that isn’t so.”

    To refute just a few of the specious arguments of Darth Ben regarding ObamaCare:
    1. ObamaCare was “debated” and passed by Congress in a Constitutional process.
    a. How can this be when in the rush to pass it, out representatives did not even have time to read the bill? When questioned about this, Nancy Pelosi stated that “we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.” Since when is that a Constitutional process?
    2. The claim that ObamaCare reflected the voice of the people. So how does Darth Ben explain that in opinion poll after opinion poll, ObamaCare has been rejected by the voice of the people before and after it was signed into law?
    3. Darth Ben claims that elected Representatives wrote the law. Ok, so name them. The truth is that it was written by teams of liberal staff attorneys in collusion special interest “progressive groups.” If Darth Ben really wants to know who wrote ObamaCare then he can read “Fool Me Twice: Obama’s Shocking Plans for the Next Four Years Exposed,” by Aaron Klein and Brenda Elliott.
    4. Darth Ben is using an incorrect model as the foundation for his Book of Mormon citations. The Obama administration acts like a merger of the Kingmen, who Captain Moroni fought and the Gadianton Robbers.
    Both conspiracies sought to take over the government by subverting the rule of law and by force of corrupt government.
    Just a few examples of many that could be cited regarding the corrupt Obama administration, subverting the rule of law:
    • Refusal to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act.
    • Refusal to enforce and uphold Immigration law.
    • Fast and Furious.
    • Refusal to investigate and prosecute “New Black Panthers”, who clearly violated federal election law.
    • Using ObamaCare to force religious institutions to provide contraceptives and fund abortions.
    5. The Obama administration argued before the Supreme Court two mutually exclusive points to support ObamaCare. First, that it was a law consistent with the Constitution mandate that Congress control interstate commerce. Second, that it was a tax. It is a logical fallacy to propose that it is both, but that is what the administration tried to do. Justice Roberts had to pick one or the other so he chose tax. Neither of the arguments are rational because ObamaCare forces someone to buy something even if they choose not to do so. So in a free market, if someone chooses not to buy health insurance, it cannot be a tax because there is no taxable event. Likewise, it cannot be commerce, because no transaction occurred. It is only one or the other if and only if the Federal government forces an individual to buy something. So Darth Ben where in the Constitution does it say that the Federal Government can force a citizen to buy something, anything? Please don’t try the fallacious insurance analogy, because people can choose not to drive and thereby not buy car insurance. The actions of the Supreme Court majority in the case of ObamaCare mirror what Former Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes said in a speech in 1907 “we are under the Constitution, but the Constitution is what the judges say it is…” If that is the case, then we can save a lot of time and billions of dollars. All that is needed is to disband Congress, cease all elections and let nine men and women tell us what to do. It sounds like Darth Ben would be very comfortable with such a system.
    6. I could go on, but one final point. Darth Ben has a very weak understanding of the Constitution. Darth Ben, where does the Constitution expressly provide for judicial review?

  11. G. Michael Craig says:

    Jeff M, your comment is the only one here that is a truthful appraisal of this matter. Just one additional point: The SCOTUS is only one leg of our tri-cameral government. They have no more authority than the other two. Their word is not final. Congress can make an end run around their decisions by way of the legislative process. The problem we face here is twofold. First, most Americans have little or no understanding of how our republic is designed to function, and are too comfortable and apathetic to learn. Second, most congressmen place more value on getting reelected, thus not making the president angry at them, than they do on upholding their oath to defend the Constitution. That is our dilemma in a nutshell.

  12. Jeff M says:

    G. Michael Craig, thanks for the kind remark. I am a life-long student of the Constitution. It started many years ago at BYU, while doing my undergraduate studies. Cleon Skousen started the Freeman Institute off campus and offered a not for credit course on the Constitution. I still have the syllabus from that class on the constitution. My concern is that Darth Ben like so many others is a victim of an education system that has rewritten history with a false narrative and has substituted socialist, atheistic philosophy for truth. I tell my family that Communists are simply Socialists running around using guns on people. While Faith is the first principle of the Gospel, the prime directive from God is agency, which is what the war in heaven was all about. That war has simply changed venues.

  13. Cody B. says:

    “High as is my respect for the Supreme tribunal of the land, my respect for the Constitution and my reverence for God are higher. I cannot assume for human laws and human decisions that which I assume for God’s laws—that they are beyond question. To do this would be to claim for their fallible authors an infallibility which belongs only to the Creator. I cannot exalt man to an equality with God. That the laws of Congress have not always been constitutional and perfect, that the decisions of the Supreme Court have not always been infallible, the history of the nation clearly establishes. It requires no great age, no venerable experience, to remind citizens of this fact; men of middle age have but to contrast the present with the past, which they can recollect, to convince themselves of it.” –George Q. Cannon

  14. Erik says:

    Darth Ben, Morality is not measured by consensus, as well legal and lawful do not always compliment each other.

  15. CW says:

    Darth Ben,
    I thought you made a great argument and it wasn’t exactly well-refuted during the podcast. In fact, if you were/are a lawyer I need to get some pre-paid legal from the firm of “Darth Ben and Associates”.
    On a more serious note I really think my problem with the law is that I really don’t believe it represents the “will of the people”. Instead I think it represents the will of groups and individuals who have much to gain from a government-mandated pre-paid medical plan. Really to me it represents the work of a Secret Combination of lobbyists, politicians (all three branches), and health-care/big Pharma.
    I find it interesting that when all three branches of government aligned with the democratic party not only did we get ACA – we got NDAA, continued massive war, massive government debt, and an extension of the PATRIOT Act. When all three branches aligned Republican you got massive war (2001-2006), a mortgage bubble, TARP, and the initial PATRIOT Act. So much for the “will of the people”, sounds like the same people to me.
    If I had to refute ACA with scripture it would be this one – Luke 14:28. If people thought about the problem, health care for all of God’s children, then I don’t think the appropriate answer is ACA. It is a tower that will not be completed…so to speak. My thoughts are that great freedom would raise everyone’s health. This is, in fact, what has happened for years in the US (look at the average lifespans of today versus history). Government regulation and legislation has taken away freedom from individuals (tax-free employer health care, state-only competition, etc.) and that has hurt overall health. I would imagine the lifespan numbers will drop in time due to ACA and whatever else government can mandate.

    Nothing special to add, I’m not really an academic guy. But thanks for the great debate guys.

  16. Erik says:

    @CW, how do you define the “will of the people”?

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