Saturday, November 22, 2014
The President has used his executive authority to alleviate one of the worst parts of out faulty immigration system. Basically, he has announced that there are certain rules regarding immigrants that he will not enforce. The parents of children born in this country and attending schools here will not be arbitrarily deported. Children born elsewhere of parents here legally will not be deported. At least that's my understanding of it.
Is he breaking the law? Well, yes. He's refusing to enforce certain laws that he thinks are unjust.
Does he really have the power under the Constitution to decline to enforce certain laws? Good question. I don't know. I do know that he is not the first President to refuse to enforce a law he didn't like. There was another one, perhaps Andrew Jackson, who was so displeased with a decision of the Supreme Court that he said, "Justice **** has issued his decision. Now let him enforce it."
Will there be a court challenge to Mr. Obama's policy regarding immigrants without papers? You bet. However, it will take time to find its way through the federal courts and end up in the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, certain deportation laws will not be enforced. Mr. Obama's policy may stay in effect until the end of his term on January 20, 2017.
Republican leaders are in disarray. What Obama has done may split the GOP in two. The more rational part really wants some sort of change, similar to what Obama has done. The Tea Party part wants none of it. Even with majorities in both chambers of Congress, Republicans will have to deal with the immigration issue rather than their financial program of cutting the tax rates on corporations and wealthy individuals, replacing Social Security with a tax-free savings system, and making some changes in the Affordable Care Act, such as eliminating financial support for poor people and getting rid of the employer mandate to provide subsidized health insurance to employees. I look forward to two years of yelling and screaming but essentially nothing being changed, nothing being accomplished. In effect, Mr. Obama has spiked the Republican cannons.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Looking back through the archives of this Blog, I found that my first post was dated September 1, 2004. Here is a copy of part of what I wrote at the time:
I am pessimistic these days. It appears that the voting public is more interested in dramatic lies told by the candidates or their surrogates about each other than in the important issues that are going to be settled by the coming election. The public is titillated at accounts that "perhaps" John Kerry told a few lies to get his medals and his purple hearts. The public would be equally titillated at an account of how George W. Bush really spent his time in Alabama while supposedly serving in the National Guard. The truth or falsity of such assertions are completely irrelevant to the qualifications of either man to be the President. They have nothing to do with the policies that either man would probably follow if he is elected (or reelected) in November. Nevertheless, these stories crowd out the more important issues that are to be settled next November, such as:
- Who will replace John Paul Stevens, Sandra Day O'Connor, and William Rehnquist when they retire from the Supreme Court?
- Will advances in stem cell research occur in the United States or, perhaps, in Korea?
- Will the Republican plan to "privatize" and effectively eliminate Social Security proceed?
- How quickly will the United States regain its good name after the bungle we've created in Iraq?
Saturday, November 08, 2014
After the election, now what?
As a Social Democrat, my reaction to last Tuesday's election is somewhere between alarm and HARRUMPH! Pundits have explained to the public that the voters were voting their dissatisfaction with the way things are. The consensus seems to be that
- It wasn't that immigration reform wasn't passed;
- It wasn't that gay marriage has not become accepted everywhere;
- It wasn't a matter of "right to life" trumping "right to choose."