Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Obamacare and the Supreme Court: any good options?

There was a reasonable argument from the very beginning that the Mandate in Obamacare made the whole Act unconstitutional.  And the line of questioning recently by the Supreme Court Justices suggest that they see the same problem.  But...that is only the beginning of the morass.  If they see the mandate as unconstitutional, what is the next step?...and why?  Whats the problem, you ask?  Well, there are two follow-up directions to determine if the mandate is ruled unconstitutional:  it that mandate severable from the rest of the act, or not.  If it is, then the rest of the Act could continue to stand.  If not, then the whole Act must also be ruled unconstitutional.

The Court in the past has bent over backwards to sever parts of bills, and they will undoubtedly look to do the same here.  But there are considerable problems with this, however.  And those problems go back to the clear language of Congressional deliberations prior to and construction of the final ACA.  Specifically, the original draft provided for a severability clause; it, as most bills do, indicated that if for any reason a portion of the bill were to be ruled unenforceable, the rest of the the bill could stand and be severed from the failed portion.  However, Congress removed that clause.  And, in addition, the Congressional Record shows that the Democrat majority which passed the final bill both understood and agreed that without the mandate the bill would be a financial disaster.

So, both logically and logistically, it would seem that Congress intended that the entire bill should and would fail if the mandate failed.  Ah, but enter the illogical and thoughtless process that so pervades our Capitol and its inhabitants:  as it passed, some desirable things were tacked on as a quick, expedient way to get them passed when it was suspected that they would not be enacted on their own merits...and then consider that some of the provisions in the Act are actually desirable, such as the elimination of limits on benefits and raises in premiums after purchase in response to developed claims.

The clear...and neat...way would seem to not severe the mandate and rule the entire bill unconstitutional as the Congress clearly intended.  That way, Congressional negotiations could begin immediately to formulate a way of re-establishing those particular insurance rules that most people would agree should be re-enacted and thus preserved.  And I earnestly hope that will come to pass...but in the meantime, the spectacle is absolutely riveting.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Public Schools: their Prussian and Progressive origins remain active today...

I have posted ad nauseum on the background of our educational system as an off-shoot of the Prussion model designed to indoctrinate in the guise of education, so I will not repeat that here.  But there is a story in the news that not only supports the continuation of that emphasis in the public schools of today, but also provides still more evidence on how completely the Progressive Ideologues have taken over control of our schools

Consider the case of Liberty Middeschool in Fairfax County, Virginia, where early in January a Conservative who found himself in the back of the eighth-grade class being taught by one Mr. Michael Denman might have been excused for hearing etherial music and thinking he had been transported to the Twilight Zone, either into some point in the far future or into a 1930's classroom in Germany.  Because, Mr Denman was in the process of assigning, as a learning (dare I suggest, "training") project the following:  You will devide yourselves into 4 groups; each will choose one of the Republican's currently running for the nomination to run against President Obama in the fall and research the flaws and weaknesses of your chosen candidate; you will then determine how to best attack those weaknesses; and finally, you will research who in the Obama campaign would be the right person to send your findings to as well as how to accomplish that.

Public School children 1)being trained and indoctrinated to investigate non-Democrat seekers of public office, 2)trained how to look for and exploit perceived weaknesses for the purpose of attacking the candidacy, including contacting operatives in the actual Democrat campaign with that information and, most importantly, 4) no consideration of investigating corresponding matters and the manner of exploiting them on the part of the current office holder.

It was only when some parents expressed concern and the matter was made public that the Superintendent and the Principal claim that they had conversation with Mr. Denman and indicated he should have made Mr. Obama available as a person of interest as well.  Now, curiously, there is a policy that no teacher should further any political point of view in class but this policy was not deemed to have been violated to a degree that resulted in anything more than an alleged direction for future assignments.  Absent nothing more than this (which, it should be noted, is merely claimed by the Superintendent but not confirmed by either the Principal or Mr. Denman [both of whom refused to comment]), apparently there are no consequences for violation of the stated policy...which suggests that if there is no public outcry, the policy is not enforced.

Why am I not surprised.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Perhaps Foreign Policy SHOULD be a factor this year....?

As we get into the mentally dangerous election season, we focus quite correctly on our domestic lack of jobs as well as our unwillingness to be financially accountable. In so doing, we logically reflect our most immediate concerns about personal and familial well-being; we (apparently unlike the Federal Government) need to balance our budgets while providing subsidence and pleasure (in that order) for our families. The result of this targeting of concern, of course, leads to the quite unsupported conclusion that foreign policy is either “fine” or “not important.” And that is, quite frankly, not only is disastrous, particularly long term.

Consider the acts and attitudes that this administration has taken and expressed:

The missile shield for easter Europe was scrapped for what was claimed to be an equally effective (but later shown to fall short) mobile system;

Support has been shown for regime change in courtries where the result was either unknown, or guaranteed to put Islamic militants in power;

Support has been denied to uprisings in Iran where the result would be guaranteed to put less theology-based rule in effect;

The U.N. Has received both financial and vocal support for plans to place control of small arms under treaty-based International Control under the aegis of the U.N., thus abrogating the United States Constitutional protections of such ownership within the United States;

Support continues to be expressed for Agenda 21, which would decimate the rights of personal property ownership, and remove state and local control of land and natural resources;

And the one democratic country in the Middle East, Israel, has found that the official administration support for its safety and well-bing is illusory at best, and non-existent at worst.

Some of you might argue to the contrary, quoting the statement of Mr. Obama while still a U.S. Senator in 2008, to AIPAC on June 6th, “That is the change we need in our foreign policy.  Change that restores American power and influence.  Change accompanied by a pledge that I will make known to allies and adversaries alike: that America maintains an unwavering friendship with Israel, and an unshakable commitment to its security."

Sounds great, right"  No doubt what he said or the plain meaning of his words...
However, might I suggest we look at his, and his administration's, words and actions since then to see if those wonderfully clear words translated into consistent action?  Or did they prove an easily voiced dis-ingenuousness on the part of Mr. Obama during an election season?

Consider the following:

!. Without any "heads up" to Israeli leaders, he calls for Israel to unilaterally return to 1967 borders as a precondition to starting negotiations with the self-proclaimed "Palestinians";

2. Mr. Obama makes a speech in Cairo in 2009 in which he equates Israeli and "Palestinian rights;

3. The President then compounds the insult by failing to include a visit to Israel and it's leaders as a continuation of that same trip;

4. Mr. Obama reveals his true feelings about Israeli leadership in a conversation with French President Sarkozy when he respond to a complaint from Mr. Sarkozy with the infamous reply, "You're Fed up, but I have to deal with him every day" as reported on November 8th, by CBS News (and how painful must that have been for them!);

5.  And in December, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was quoted as telling the Israelis, regarding peace talks, "Just get to the damned table."

Now, any one of these acts and/or words would be considered merely a "hiccup", a stumble if you wish, in our relationship with Israel.  The administration has claimed just that, and the media has accepted them as such, looking at each of these occurrences in isolation and as a minor glitch.  But...when looked at as a whole they show not only a constant degradation of the importance placed by this Administration on the American/Israeli connection but rather a disregard that is diametrically opposite of Mr. Obama's words back in 2008.

Now, any one of these acts and/or words would be considered a "hiccup", a stumble if you wish, in our relationship.  But when taken together they reveal a pattern of both disregard and greatly reduced (and, perhaps, even the absence of) concern for the well-being of Israel;  there is, instead, evidence of a greater concern with ameliorating and placating those who oppose the well-being and welfare of the United States in the world, encouraging Islamic-themed theocracies in the Middle East, and reducing the stature and power of the The United States of America throughout the world even as he personally acts in a manner designed to further his own self-aggrandizement.

So, while all of the elements noted above can and have been written off as relatively insignificant and/or meaningless indicators of diplomatic direction if viewed individually, when viewed as a whole they reveal a disquieting that surprisingly has failed to garner the attention of either the public or the media.  The United States is likely to pay dearly for this lack of interest.