Liberals' love-hate relationship with the law

The left-liberal mindset endemic on the college faculties and law schools where Barack Obama’s political sensibilities were forged holds that morals and politics are subject to a universal reason to which the left-liberal sensibility is uniquely attuned. This conceit receives expression in a faith that the left-liberal brain trust can embody complex public policy in general rules and regulations, which can then be administered smoothly by well-educated bureaucrats and adjudicated impartially by empathetic judges.

At the same time, the left-liberal mind rebels against established authorities, hierarchies, and formalities that constrain its ability to pursue the people’s good and social justice — at least as it understands them.

Often enough, this rebellion turns against laws duly enacted by left-liberals themselves. Obamacare and the Iran nuclear deal are now demonstrating the destabilizing consequences of governing in accordance with a love-hate relationship toward the law.

The Affordable Care Act was grounded in enormous confidence in the power of law — to redistribute wealth, bring health care to those who lacked it, improve the quality of insurance of those who already possessed it and, in the process, remake one-sixth of the nation’s economy by putting it under tight government management.