Thursday, May 9, 2013

Quickies: Is The Child The Mere Creature Of The State?

I cannot over-praise Stephen Baskerville's remarkable book Taken Into Custody, about the governmental usurpation of parental (especially paternal) rights to one's children. You can't read it without feeling something icy slither down your spine. Quite a number of incidents confirm Baskerville's thesis that this destruction of family privacy is a deliberate step in an ongoing campaign to bring an end to what remains of freedom in these United States.

Here's the latest prominent case in point:

Alex and Anna Nikolayev of Sacramento, Calif., want only the best for their five-month-old son, Sammy. They’re particularly sensitive to the infant’s health because he has a heart murmur and will likely need surgery. The couple’s troubles began last month when they took Sammy to Sutter Memorial Hospital in Sacramento with symptoms of flu.

Mrs. Nikolayev watched as her son received intravenous antibiotics. She didn’t like what she saw, and asked questions. A nurse told her that she didn’t know why the intravenous antibiotics were prescribed. The Nikolayevs then took the boy to another hospital, operated by Kaiser Permanente, where doctors said the infant was actually in good health. Doctors said they had no concerns about the parents taking the child home.

Someone, presumably someone at Sutter Memorial Hospital, didn’t like losing a patient and prospective payment, and called the state Child Protective Services, which, accompanied by police, paid a warrantless visit to the family the next morning. “I’m going to grab your baby, and don’t resist, and don’t fight me, OK?” one of the policemen told Mrs. Nikolayev. The conversation was recorded on video.

The editorialist who wrote the above-linked column makes some monitory observations about the relationship between ObamaCare and this incident. He might well be correct, but even in the absence of that anti-Constitutional monstrosity, is it not clear that "child protective services" are operating outside all constraints -- that they have effectively infinite and unreviewable power to invade family matters on their own initiative?

There have been some very high-profile cases of abuse of power by such agencies. The one that comes to mind at once concerns "Alicia W.," a young girl in San Diego who had been the victim of a sexual attack that CPS investigators resolved to blame on her father, though similar attacks had occurred nearby -- even after their perpetrator was caught. Cases of a similar nature involving alleged abuses by day-care facilities, such as the case that sent wholly innocent Gerald Amirault to prison for 18 years, are abundant.

Why is there no outcry against the anti-Constitutional "child welfare" system and the unbridled "family courts" that enable it to run roughshod over American families? Is it perhaps that there is one, but it's too faint to hear?



furball said...

As you alluded to in a recent post, I am one of those "concerned citizens" who lost heart and sort of gave up after Obama's re-election.

But even if an entire generation of our electorate is 52% blind to incompetence and political manipulation, the fact remains that *any and every* government is susceptible to creeping bureaucracy. Our legislature gives law-giving powers and even judicial powers to branches of the administration - witness EPA, BATFE, Obamacare, and just about ANY federal agency you care to investigate.

The bottom line, I think, is that we gave the government the power to grow this way by the income tax amendment of 1916 and the Federal Reserve Act of 1913.

Once government got the power to take and give away money, and once it got the dollars to spend on itself, the matter was settled: people lost sovereignty and bureaucracy became entrenched and "growth-oriented."

If (or when) the coming collapse happens, I hope it will be resolved with minimal bloodshed and a sturdy resolve to set the limit of government spending at what the government can collect within Constitutional guidelines and perhaps a hard limit of 10% of either income or flat or sales tax.

The overwhelming evidence is that a government flush with $$$ is a government susceptible to cronyism, corruption and bloat.

I'll crawl back into my cynical hole now, because it seems obvious to me that not only 52% of the electorate won't agree with me. Most of the press and most of our educational system have already been usurped by the idea that "government is the answer."

Here in California, we had a limousine with 9 females of a wedding party catch fire. 5 of the women died. Within 24 hours, a member of the state assembly had proposed a bill that all limousine services had to provide fire extinguishers in their cars.

It's all of a piece. When the state can gather any money for whatever it deems "a good idea," the state can try to legislate "protections" for any bad outcome people might think the state can protect them from. Throwing money and a bureaucracy at a problem becomes a substitute for individual responsibility and a society that scorns improper behavior.

There are those buzzwords that statists now scorn: "individual responsibility." "Society."

They equate the responsibility of the individual with being left alone in a world of sharks. But most of the sharks were created by the state's cronyism. And the scorn with which a society should hold those sharks is denigrated as being racist, homophobic, too religious, too "clinger," or too right-wing to even deserve consideration.

When individuals lose consciousness of their own responsibility, and when the state scorns the social pressure of collected individuals, what is left but the state?

This is where all the leftists are going - from Stalinist times to Mario Savio to Berkeley in the '60s to Ayres and the Weathermen to Obama and the U.N. They'll tell you, "People are bad, but the state is better."

I believe that people are bad and the state is worse.

Mark Butterworth said...

There is no great outcry against CPS and family courts because most of us are aware of a terrible dilemma regarding the rights of parents and the rights of children (to life and safety).

When deluded parents refuse useful medical treatment and cause their children to die, what are we, as a society supposed to do? Let it happen or intervene?

Yet, we know that not all refusals of treatment are crazy such as the Sacto case.

The fact is that we are ill equipped to handle family situations. And worse, we have all these women and liberal judges involved who are hysterical little Hitlers, as opposed to regular men (who tend to become jaded and indifferent).

We need Solomon for these situations but he's nowhere to be found. Thus, insanity rules.

Anonymous said...

In the example it appears that the fault lies with someone at the hospital who misstated or lied about the medical facts. What happened after that was a mistake and the social worker acted improperly. Had she addressed the issue with the parents all of this could have been prevented.

KG said...

Perhaps people are simply overwhelmed by the scale and scope of outrages against liberty and decency and feel it's impossible to fight battles on so many fronts?

Weetabix said...

What KG said. Intellectually, I know that what I need to do is pick one or two fronts. But they're all so important and so outrageous, it's hard to pick.

William Stout said...

Our system of laws exist to protect the people and to foster order. When that system breaks down and men begin to pursue their own interests instead of that of the law, they invariably bring about injustice. The Duke rape case is a prime example where the Prosecutor tried his best to railroad innocent men. Where once prosecutorial misconduct was rare, it has been steadily growing for a while now. Worse, such misconduct has spread to other organs of government as your blog post points out.

The recent revelation of the IRS's misconduct regarding the excessive scrutiny of any organization with 'Tea' in its name indicates that this problem is far more extensive than thought. Our founders knew that man could not be trusted with power over his fellows and so they created checks and balances to prevent such from occurring. As the left continues to gain ground, expect this form of corruption to spread and become more invasive as they dismantle our founder's works.

The train of abuses is growing long indeed.