Tag Archives: Wickard v. Filburn

Wickard v. Filburn

The Supreme Court decision that started it all.

See, a long time ago, in 1942, a small time farmer, Roscoe Filburn, grew wheat for consumption by his animals on his private property.  He was doing nothing more than growing food for his own personal use and had no intention of selling it.

This violated the government limit on wheat production per acre.  Mr. Filburn was ordered to destroy some of his crop and pay a fine.  Being a reasonable man, Mr. Filburn declined.

See, the Federal government at the time felt that one of the ways out of the Great Depression was to raise the price of wheat.  And to do that one had to control the supply; so they imposed a limit per acre.  The case made its way all the way to the Supreme Court where they decided that had Mr. Filburn NOT produced the extra wheat, he would have been forced to purchase it market prices.  Wheat, being subject to a national trade, was therefore granted regulatory viability under the Commerce Clause.

In the office I work at, we call that Un-fuckin’-believable.

And to make matters worse is the back story.

See, the Supreme Court at the time was not a Liberal court, on the contrary, it was Conservative.  However, the President was one of the worst in History; FDR.  See, he threatened the court that if they did not side with his agenda, he would simply appoint additional members to the Supreme Court until he had the majority he needed.  The Court, not wanting their power and influence diminished, gave FDR the decision he wanted.

What amount of tragedy would have been avoided had Wickard v. Filburn been adjudicated according to Liberty and law?  The horrors of dictatorial power in the hands of the gentle Left.