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Executive Order Controversy

November 24th, 2014

pen

 

It’s rare in American politics when an issue arises with merits to both sides. Usually, it’s a case of entrenched interests versus the American people, the middle class or disadvantaged groups. As a lifelong liberal, it should be obvious what side I support.

… the idea of prosecutorial discretion seems to be a stretch when it is applied to an entire class of people absent a rationale of effective implementation of a bill passed by Congress. In this case, the issue of scale makes a difference and turns an executive order into something else.

However, the recent controversy over President Obama’s executive order leaves me in a quandry. I believe in helping illegal immigrants and understand other Presidents have issued similar orders affecting about 40 percent of their population each time. However, a recent article by Ross Douthat in The New York Times, “The Making of an Imperial President,” made me think twice.

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Learning the Lesson of War

November 22nd, 2014

cemetery

 

Learning the lesson of war isn’t easy for civilian leaders, especially those who have never served on the field of battle. It is all too easy for “armchair generals” to push numbers around and listen to statistics without realizing the horror that real war is for the participants on the front line.

Prolonging our mission in Afghanistan may seem prudent in light of recent events but only for the armchair generals.

I’m afraid that President Obama, for all his past history and prescience about getting out of Iraq, has become trapped by his military who, according to today’s New York Times story, have pushed him to prolong the combat mission in Afghanistan.

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Immigration and Scriptures

November 21st, 2014

bible

 

One of the more controversial parts of President Obama’s speech last night involved his invocation of scriptures to justify his action. The President stated, “Scripture tells us that we shall not oppress a stranger, for we know the heart of a stranger – we were strangers once, too.”

… Christianity as a religion is based on mercy, the very thing right-wing Christians would deny for the strangers living among us. Their very religious identity should lead them to support the reform they are now opposing.

For all those right-wing Christians who opposed the President’s action, the problem is even more fundamental. Yes, there needs to be the rule of law, but Christianity is all about the need to temper the law with mercy. Its foundational basis is that you can’t earn salvation by following the law, it’s only through the grace of Jesus we can be saved.

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Immigration Insanity

November 14th, 2014

Hispanic school

 

What is it with people? Is it so hard to have empathy for the struggling among us, the displaced, those who look up to what our country offers and just want to be a part of it?

I applaud President Obama for standing up to the grinches, the people who want to keep the American dream just for themselves, to greedily hoard all the advantages of being an American.

Everyone understands the law and agrees that those who come to the country legally should have precedence. But do people really advocate splitting up families and deporting the parents of bona fide American citizens?

I applaud President Obama for standing up to the grinches, the people who want to keep the American dream just for themselves, to greedily hoard all the advantages of being an American. The President is making a principled stand to bring some humanity to enforcing our immigration laws, to no longer be intimidated by Republicans whose justice knows no mercy.

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Environmental Relief

November 13th, 2014

forest

 

President Obama will be praised by future generations for the breakthrough he has achieved with China to battle global climate change. With the population of Beijing wearing surgical masks for self-protection, China was forced to acknowledge its pollution problem and do something about it.

To Republican critics, I have one simple question: “Say there is only a five percent chance we are destroying the planet. Isn’t it worth erring on the side of caution? I mean the Earth is all we’ve got.

The negotiations were kept secret precisely to prevent the obstructionist GOP from meddling to the detriment of us all. Most people acknowledge climate change and nearly all respected scientists do the same. To Republican critics, I have one simple question: “Say there is only a five percent chance we are destroying the planet. Isn’t it worth erring on the side of caution? I mean the Earth is all we’ve got.

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How to Edit Your Employees Writing

November 12th, 2014

hieroglyphics

 

Anyone rising through the hierarchy of corporate organizations will eventually be faced with the need to edit or supervise writing assignments. For those without a strong background in English composition, here are some basic tips regardless of your field.

Anyone rising through the hierarchy of corporate organizations will eventually be faced with the need to edit or supervise writing assignments.

First, being concise will involve 50 percent of the corrections you make. If you can say something in two words instead of three, that’s almost always an immediate editing possibility. For example, you can edit phrases such as “it’s important to” by simply changing the verb format to “you must.”

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Politics and True Christianity

November 10th, 2014

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In these days of the “religious right” and similarly affiliated groups, a distorted picture of Christianity has supplanted the teachings of Jesus and focused solely on one or two issues such as abortion and marriage equality. It is time to set the record straight.

The phrase “What Would Jesus Do?” condemns Republicans and their unwillingness to assist the struggling, branding them as “takers,” and giving large tax breaks to the rich instead.

My Pastor has taught that Jesus mentions the poor in the New Testament more than he does heaven or hell, and I believe an attitude of compassion and assistance seems to be more in line with the views of Democrats than Republicans. Moreover, Jesus hung out with tax collectors, prostitutes and other sinners, preaching repentance and forgiveness of sins. Today’s religious right seems to be more filled with hatred and condemnation for those on the margins of society.

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Republican Civil War

November 8th, 2014

statue

 

The Republican Party remains in the midst of a bitter civil war, a conflict that was only partially masked by their successful election results on Tuesday. The war has raged at least since the era of Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan, and it remains unabated today.

It seems that the gerrymandered electorate the states have created to carve out safe districts for Republicans have resulted in a demand by that same electorate for conservative purity.

Simply stated, the war revolves around the difference between the give-and-take of politics and governing versus the imperative of ideological purity and standing on principle. It seems that the gerrymandered electorate the states have created to carve out safe districts for Republicans have resulted in a demand by that same electorate for conservative purity.

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Immigration Conundrum

November 7th, 2014

statue of liberty

 

Our immigration system is broken, and any attempts to fix it are bound to make our government explode. Our two political parties contain strident factions, each one a polar opposite of the other.

Our immigration system is broken, and any attempts to fix it are bound to make our government explode.

The Republican Party is refusing to allow what it calls “amnesty,” even though the legislation contains imperatives such as e-verify to take away any incentive for additional immigration in the first place.

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Post-Election Spin

November 5th, 2014

digital voting

 

Spinning the meaning of elections may represent a more critical matter than the contests themselves. Because interpreting what elections mean, the intent of the voter, can provide support for many controversial policies even if the voters did not mean to do so.

Democrats, faced with this congratulatory and delusionary barrage of mandates, must stand up to Republican bluster and stand firm on the issues voter do support, including a raise in the minimum wage and policies designed to reduce societal inequalities.

That’s why you see legions of Republican establishment figures congratulating themselves this morning and warning the President to heed the message of the voters. Even if Republican victories were primarily located in deep red states, and the Democrats were at a decided disadvantage, you hear Laura Ingraham and Fox News pundits trumpeting about the mandate to repeal Obamacare — even though the Republicans themselves stopped mentioning the newly popular healthcare program months ago.

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