One World Government
For all the gnashing of teeth over the lack of comity and civility in Washington, the real problem is not etiquette but the breakdown of political norms, legislative and constitutional.
Such as the one just spectacularly blown up in the Senate. To get three judges onto a coveted circuit court, frustrated Democrats abolished the filibuster for executive appointments and (non-Supreme Court) judicial nominations.
The problem is not the change itself. It’s fine that a president staffing his administration should need 51 votes rather than 60. Doing so for judicial appointments, which are for life, is a bit dicier. Nonetheless, for about 200 years the filibuster was nearly unknown in blocking judicial nominees. So we are really just returning to an earlier norm.
The violence to political norms here consisted in how that change was executed. By brute force — a near party-line vote of 52 to 48 . This was a disgraceful violation of more than two centuries of precedent. If a bare majority can change the fundamental rules that govern an institution, then there are no rules. Senate rules today are whatever the majority decides they are that morning.
What distinguishes an institution from a flash mob is that its rules endure. They can be changed, of course. But only by significant supermajorities. That’s why constitutional changes require two-thirds of both houses plus three-quarters of the states. If we could make constitutional changes by majority vote, there would be no Constitution.
As of today, the Senate effectively has no rules. Congratulations, Harry Reid. Finally, something you will be remembered for.
Barack Obama may be remembered for something similar. His violation of the proper limits of executive power has become breathtaking. It’s not just making recess appointments when the Senate is in session. It’s not just unilaterally imposing a law Congress had refused to pass — the Dream Act — by brazenly suspending large sectionsof the immigration laws.
We’ve now reached a point where a flailing president, desperate to deflect the opprobrium heaped upon him for the false promise that you could keep your health plan if you wanted to, calls a hasty news conference urging both insurers and the states to reinstate millions of such plans.
Except that he is asking them to break the law. His own law. Under Obamacare, no insurer may issue a policy after 2013 that does not meet the law’s minimum coverage requirements. These plans were canceled because they do not.
The law remains unchanged. The regulations governing that law remain unchanged. Nothing is changed except for a president proposing to unilaterally change his own law from the White House press room.
That’s banana republic stuff, except that there the dictator proclaims from the presidential balcony.
Remember how for months Democrats denounced Republicans for daring to vote to defund or postpone Obamacare? Saboteurs! Terrorists! How dare you alter “the law of the land.”
This was nonsense from the beginning. Every law is subject to revision and abolition if the people think it turned out to be a bad idea. Even constitutional amendments can be repealed — and have been (see Prohibition).
After indignant denunciation of Republicans for trying to amend “the law of the land” constitutionally (i.e. in Congress assembled), Democrats turn utterly silent when the president lawlessly tries to do so by executive fiat.
Nor is this the first time. The president wakes up one day and decides to unilaterally suspend the employer mandate, a naked invasion of Congress’s exclusive legislative prerogative, enshrined in Article I. Not a word from the Democrats. Nor now regarding the blatant usurpation of trying to restore canceled policies that violate explicit Obamacare coverage requirements.
And worse. When Congress tried to make Obama’s “fix” legal — i.e., through legislation — he opposed it. He even said he would veto it. Imagine: vetoing the very bill that would legally enact his own illegal fix.
At rallies, Obama routinely says he has important things to do and he’s not going to wait for Congress. Well, amending a statute after it’s been duly enacted is something a president may not do without Congress. It’s a gross violation of his Article II duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed.
A Senate with no rules. A president without boundaries. One day, when a few bottled-up judicial nominees and a malfunctioning health-care Web site are barely a memory, we will still be dealing with the toxic residue of this outbreak of authoritative lawlessness. source – Washington Post
People are puzzled: Why would Barack Obama have lied about how wonderfully everything was going to go with ObamaCare when officials in his administration knew perfectly well that disaster was going to strike?
In one sense, the answer is simple: At the time, just before Oct. 1, Republicans were insisting ObamaCare be delayed or defunded. The president and his team weren’t going to give the enemy the satisfaction of agreeing — or the potent ammunition that would have come from a rueful admission the system wasn’t ready.
Today, a bipartisan agreement to delay ObamaCare seems like it would have been a pretty good deal. It didn’t look that way at all in the last two weeks of September.
But there’s a deeper reason he and his people lied: They did it because they could. They did it because nearly five years in the White House had given Obama and his team confidence they would not face the music and they could finesse the problems until they got fixed.
Consider the events that would have been unprecedented scandals in a Republican administration — with teams of reporters digging and scratching daily at every nook and cranny in every bureaucratic corridor — that have instead been covered dutifully but with relatively little passion and almost no follow-up. Why? Because it would have hurt Obama, that’s why.
First, the Obama Justice Department.
Attorney General Eric Holder has survived three scandals that would have felled a Republican. His department attempted to soft-pedal its responsibility for the so-called “gunwalking” policy called Fast and Furious — which led to the murders of US border agents by Mexican drug-cartel members with guns effectively provided to the killers by the Justice Department.
He approved the secret surveillance of Fox News Channel reporter James Rosen in a leak investigation on the outrageous grounds that Rosen was a possible “co-conspirator” in an act of espionage. And he approved similar tactics against reporters at the Associated Press in another leak investigation.
Holder’s still there. Obama defends him. When was the last time you heard Rosen’s name mentioned, or the AP story referenced, or Fast and Furious come up?
Second, the Internal Revenue Service.
The IRS’s own acknowledgement that it had targeted conservative groups with anti-liberal agendas has led to shamed retirements, hasty changes at the top of the agency and officials pleading the Fifth Amendment. These efforts were clearly undertaken to find means by which to aid Democratic efforts in the 2010 and 2012 election. One can only wonder at what would have been done to George W. Bush by the media had similar outrages been perpetated on leftist groups in 2003 and 2004. Obama suffered . . . a little. A very little.
Third, the State Department.
The unconscionable behavior of State Department and White House officials during and after the killing of four Americans in Benghazi at the height of the 2012 race — during which the American people were deliberately and consciously misled — has had no lasting consequences whatsoever. Obama felt free to select the chief liar, Susan Rice, as his national-security adviser without experiencing a moment’s fear about how her appointment might become a scandal.
Fourth, making law from the White House.
In 2011, the president said that owing to Republican recalcitrance in the House of Representatives, he would use his executive authority to get things done. And he has. As Tara Helfman writes in the December issue of Commentary, the magazine I edit, “Notwithstanding President Obama’s constitutional duty to enforce the law of the Untied States, where federal laws conflict with his policy preferences on gay marriage, illegal immigration and drug policy, the president has simply opted not to enforce or defend them.”
Moreover, to strengthen his hand with Hispanic voters in 2012, he ordered the Justice Department to follow certain provisions of a law governing illegal immigrants that has yet to be approved by the Congress. That is unprecedented.
So, if you want to understand the blindness and arrogance of the Obama White House in failing to appreciate the wave of rage and disappointment and disgusted wonderment that would hit them in the wake of the ObamaCare rollout, you need only consider these factors.
He has always had the protection of his liberal base.
He has always had the protection of Senate Democrats, who have not acted in any way to trouble him regarding these scandals and who have impeded aggressive investigations into them.
And he has always had the protection of the mainstream media.
As a result, Barack Obama and his administration have said what they felt they needed to say and done what they felt they needed to do for immediate political gain. They did so this time. But this time was different, because this time he was mishandling and discrediting the great liberal desideratum of our time — a national health-care system.
This time he hasn’t gotten away with it. Yet. source – NY Post
KABUL – While many Americans have been led to believe the war in Afghanistan will soon be over, a draft of a key U.S.-Afghan security deal obtained by NBC News shows the United States is prepared to maintain military outposts in Afghanistan for many years to come, and pay to support hundreds of thousands of Afghan security forces.
The wide-ranging document, still unsigned by the United States and Afghanistan, has the potential to commit thousands of American troops to Afghanistan and spend billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars.
The document outlines what appears to be the start of a new, open-ended military commitment in Afghanistan in the name of training and continuing to fight al-Qaeda. The war in Afghanistan doesn’t seem to be ending, but renewed under new, scaled-down U.S.-Afghan terms.
“The Parties acknowledge that continued U.S. military operations to defeat al-Qaeda and its affiliates may be appropriate and agree to continue their close cooperation and coordination toward that end,” the draft states. The 25-page “Security and Defense Cooperation Agreement Between the United States of America and the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan” is a sweeping document…source – NBC News
Maybe in your idea of what a government takeover looks like, you imagined armed guards patrolling the streets. Well, that day is not far off, but there are other, cleaner ways to collapse and takeover a society. Destroying their healthcare and access to doctors is certainly one of them. It is typical in Marxist regimes to deny people access to clean water, fresh food and medical services. It weakens them and breaks their morale.
America, these are your last days, and you don’t even know it.
Reuters News – UnitedHealth Group dropped thousands of doctors from its networks in recent weeks, leaving many elderly patients unsure whether they need to switch plans to continue seeing their doctors, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.
The insurer said in October that underfunding of Medicare Advantage for plans the elderly could not be fully offset by the company’s other healthcare business. The company also reported spending more healthcare premiums on medical claims in the third quarter, due mainly to government cuts to payments for Medicare Advantage services.
The Journal report said that doctors in at least 10 states were notified of being laid off the plans, some citing “significant changes and pressures in the healthcare environment.” According to the notices, the terminations can be appealed within 30 days.
Tyler Mason, a UnitedHealth spokesperson, was not immediately available for comment when reached by Reuters.
The insurer told the WSJ that its provider networks were always changing and that it expected its Medicare Advantage network to be 85 percent to 90 percent of its current size by the end of 2014.
UnitedHealth is participating in about a dozen new state insurance markets that launched on October 1 to offer subsidized health coverage under President Barack Obama’s healthcare overhaul.
The insurer said previously it planned to withdraw from some markets in 2014 because of the government funding cuts.
Another top health insurer, Aetna Inc , also warned in October that it expected slowing growth in 2014 in its Medicare Advantage plans. source – Yahoo News
Punishing friends, rewarding enemies
Watching the Obama administration at work this week, a friend offered this judgment: Under Obama, Iran keeps its nuclear program and Americans lose their health insurance.
Historians and political scientists will have much to say, after its collapse, about contemporary liberalism’s propensity to be at once tough on American citizens and soft on Iranian mullahs. Today’s liberals are pleased to use the power of the state to nudge—not to say bully—their fellow Americans, while shunning the exercise of power abroad, preferring to accommodate—not to say appease—the nation’s enemies. It would seem to be a paradox.
An NTEB Must-Read Story: Barack Obama High School Classmate Reveals That He Was A Well Known Homosexual
Or perhaps not. Aren’t the bossy often insecure? Aren’t bullies often cowards? Those who throw their weight around when they aren’t resisted often shy away from confrontation with those who won’t yield. A fatal conceit at home can be the flip side of a fatal loss of nerve abroad.
This is a moment that reveals the bankruptcy of contemporary liberalism
It’s also a moment of truth for American conservatism, which, at its best, com bines the sound judgment of an older conservatism and the fighting spirit of an older liberalism. It’s a moment of truth for an American conservatism that embodies “that honorable determination which animates every votary of freedom, to rest all our political experiments on the capacity of mankind for self-government” (Federalist 39). This suggests the immediate task of American conservatives: resistance to the nanny state at home and the enemies of freedom abroad.
The spirit of resistance is there
The rise of the Tea Party shows that. But the energy of the Tea Party, as Tea Party activists know, isn’t enough. A strategy of successful resistance has to be embodied in and carried forward by a real political party. That’s the Republican party. source – Weekly Standard
Obama drops the other shoe
Obama first step was to get millions and millions of Americans wholly dependent on government entitlements like welfare and food stamps. Now we have his second step – slowly begin to cut off the supply, which is what we see starting to happen now.
In all oppressive regimes, the tactics are the same, and they all start with creating a lopsided dependence on the government for food, clothing, shelter and healthcare. Control these and you control the masses very effectively. Hungry people become desperate very quickly…>>Click Here to read the rest of this story<<
WASHINGTON – Retired Army Maj. Gen. Patrick Brady, recipient of the U.S. military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, as well as other top retired officers, say President Obama’s agenda is decimating the morale of the U.S. ranks to the point members no longer feel prepared to fight or have the desire to win.
“There is no doubt he (Obama) is intent on emasculating the military and will fire anyone who disagrees with him” over such issues as “homosexuals, women in foxholes, the Obama sequester,” Brady told WND.
“They are purging everyone, and if you want to keep your job, just keep your mouth shut,”…>>Click Here To Read The Rest Of This Story<<