Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Cruising the Web

John Fund explains just what I was writing about a couple of days ago as to how Obama's deceit on Obamacare reduces trust that Republicans might have when it comes to making some big comprehensive deal on immigration.
The Obama administration’s instinctive dishonesty and contempt for the rule of law are finally catching up with it. Few Republicans in the House — even those who devoutly want immigration reform — trust the Obama administration to enforce with consistency and integrity anything that passes Congress.
The Obama administration was dishonest again and again in how they wrote and are now trying to implement Obamacare. Who could trust them not to behave similarly in implementing an immigration reform.

Michael McConnell, a former appellate judge who was often on the shortlist for the Supreme Court when George W. Bush was president, writes today in the WSJ about the historical context for executives deciding simply not to enforce laws they didn't like. It goes back to King James II and the Glorious Revolution. The Constitution requires the president to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed." This does not mean that he can pick and choose which laws shall be executed. As McConnell details, this is something that has been recognized by previous presidents and in Supreme Court rulings. He also touches on the very real possibility that the Court will decide that no one has the standing to sue a president who decides not to enforce laws.
Of all the stretches of executive power Americans have seen in the past few years, the president's unilateral suspension of statutes may have the most disturbing long-term effects. As the Supreme Court said long ago (Kendall v. United States, 1838), allowing the president to refuse to enforce statutes passed by Congress "would be clothing the president with a power to control the legislation of congress, and paralyze the administration of justice."
Members of both parties, if they care anything about our system of government should denounce the President's action. Republicans may because they are happy to criticize Obama, but Democrats should remember that sometimes there are principles more important than partisan support of the administration. I won't hold my breath, however, waiting for Democrats to come out supporting our system of checks and balances over supporting a president of their own party. Their silence is telling.

The next issue up for gay marriage may well be when couples married in one state move to another state that doesn't recognize gay marriage and then decide to get a divorce. I've always thought that this issue will be the one that nationalizes same-sex marriage since I don't see any way that a state could treat one set of married couples differently when it comes to divorce and related legal issues than it treats another set of married couples. And how can a state deny that a couple married in a state like New York as not being married when they move to a state like Virginia? That is why the Constitution has a Full Faith and Credit Clause.

Glenn Reynolds explains the dangers of letting politicians determine who is and isn't a real journalist. Do you want Dick Durbin to be the one to make the evaluation? As Reynolds writes, Durbin exposes his ignorance of the history of journalism in our nation as well as what is happening today in this age of blogs and Twitter and other new media as more and more news gets reported by people who are not part of the mainstream media.

Jonah Goldberg calls out the hypocrisy of civil libertarians who are so worried about the NSA's database but don't seem concerned about the health database that the federal government will be compiling on every American citizen about every aspect of their health history. Sure it's all supposed to be kept private, but then tax filings are supposed to be kept private and we know that someone in the IRS leaked some information on conservative groups.
What I have a hard time understanding, however, is how one can get worked up into a near panic about an overreaching national security apparatus while also celebrating other government expansions into our lives, chief among them the hydrahead leviathan of the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare). The 2009 stimulus created a health database that will store all your health records. The Federal Data Services Hub will record everything bureaucrats deem useful, from your incarceration record and immigration status to whether or not you had an abortion or were treated for depression or erectile dysfunction.

In other words, while the NSA can tell if you searched the Web for "Viagra," the Hub will know if you were actually prescribed the medication and for how long. Yes, there are rules for keeping that information private, but you don't need security clearance or a warrant to get it.

Then there's the IRS. We already have evidence of abuse there. For instance, the National Organization for Marriage, which opposes same-sex marriage, had its tax returns and private donor information leaked to the news media last year, presumably in order to embarrass Mitt Romney (he gave the group $10,000) and others during the presidential election.

And yet, worrying about NSA abuse is cast as high-minded while worrying about ObamaCare or the IRS is seen as paranoid. Why?

More incompetence from the IRS as the National Journal reports on how they mistakenly exposed on the internet thousands of Social Security numbers. One reason after another to feel so comfortable with having the IRS in charge of deciding who gets Obamacare.

Yet President Obama is calling for his administration to find "smarter" ways to run the government. Unfortunately, he doesn't understand that constantly increasing the size and reach of the federal government is exactly the wrong path to creating "smarter" government.

Is setting a pretty low bar for success in governing Iran if Ahmadinejad's self-proclaimed big success as Iranian president is his denial of the Holocaust.

One scientist explains why climate change is not the world's biggest problem.

So who is in charge in Obama's administration: the clear thinkers or the "delusional Obamaphiles?"

Heather MacDonald explains how anti-police activists are chipping away at the policies that have done so much to lower the crime rate in New York City.

Apparently, multiculturalists put their defense of Islam and hatred of Islamophobia ahead of women's rights and safety.

Jim Geraghty notes Obama's passivity to events around the world.

States are going on a spending spree based on a one-time increase in revenues due to people cashing in on their capital gains ahead of the 2013 tax hike. It is such short-sightedness to base long-term spending plans on a short-term increase in revenue.

A new book claims that there were closer ties between Lee Harvey Oswald and Cuba than previously reported and that the CIA covered that up.

A frightening fact from the jobs report is that youth unemployment is going steadily up while the percentage of those over 65 who are still working is increasing. This is not a healthy trend and I fear that young people will be dealing with the consequences of such high unemployment rates today for the rest of their lives.