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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Border Wars

Folks, it was always going to happen.

It was inevitable.

As a country, we are no longer capable of doing business in any other fashion.

I've got a hundred emails here this morning asking what I think regarding today’s ruling temporarily halting President Obama’s immigration policy.

Last night, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen put a temporary stay on Obama's executive action designed to protect five million illegal immigrants from immediate deportation. The first part of that executive order, which would expand an already existing program that protects children and young adults who were brought into the country illegally but through no fault of their own, is set to begin tomorrow.

What do I think?

I think the same thing I've always thought: Congress should have done its job.

But they didn't.

So the president took action – and conservatives just couldn’t allow that.

So now it'll be decided by the court.

It’ll be decided in the court because the Legislature not only refuses to do its job, they refuse to allow the president to do his.

Republicans say the government is broken, and they’re going to keep on breaking it until they’re proven right.

Immigration reform should have been a done deal years ago. Instead of petulant obstructionism, idiotic shutdowns, conspiracy mongering, endless "investigations" into matters that have been long resolved, chest beating, dick waggling, Jesus hurling, booger eating stupidity promoted as some kind of virtue, superstition, ignorant science denial, prayers and rain dances, and endless endless endless bullshit, the people we pay to make laws and policies should have been doing their goddamned job.

And when they didn't, when they refused to do the job they are paid to do, like any other employee they should have been fired.

We should have thrown the sons of bitches out of office and replaced them with people who would work.

Instead, we rewarded their childish nonsense.

This is the United States of America, our government is of the people, by the people, and for the people. And the state of this country, the state of our inoperative government is our own fault and nobody else's.

It's really just that simple. 

We should have a useable and humane immigration policy and we should have had it years ago.

We should have a sane and sustainable energy policy, and we should have had it years ago.

We should have a workable and sustainable budget, and we should have had it all along.

And with a sustainable budget we should have had tax code reform, fair and equitable for all.

We should have a reasonable and flexible education policy, one that prepares the next generation to thrive in a complex and evolving world and ensures that everybody who wants an education gets one.

We should have a national medical policy that ensures affordable medical and dental care for every single American, every single one, like civilized countries do.

We should have banking laws that allow capitalism to flourish but prevent the wealthy from raping the rest of us at will.

We should have sane and reasonable environmental regulations that, again, allow business to flourish and resources to be harvested without laying waste to the earth or poisoning our children. 

And we should damned well have civil rights for all, for every single goddamned person in this country, black, white, yellow, red, green, gay, straight, undecided, left, right, believers and non-believers, old, young, men, women, and whatever, all of us and no more fucking around about it.

That's what we should have already, that and much, much more.

It doesn't require divine intervention, it doesn't require a miracle, or magic, or anything extraordinary. It simply requires grown adults to stop acting like spoiled children, to put aside their personal bullshit, and sit down and do the goddamned job they are paid to do.  No more, no less.

Instead, Congress has utterly refused to do its job.

Not only have they refused to do their job, but they’ve managed to convince half the nose-pickers in this country that gridlock and failure to perform is some kind of feature instead of the system destroying bug it is. 

There are people, Americans, who believe that it is actually congress’s job to obstruct, to delay, to block the president at every turn. These people believe that in a world of eight billion, in a time of exponentially increasing complexity, in a time of rapidly changing challenges and dangers, that the best thing we can do as a country is … nothing.  Don’t go too fast, don’t change, don’t advance, stall, hang back, let’s not be too hasty, wait, wait.  And meanwhile the world flies past, new nations rise, new dangers, new challenges, and we sit squabbling among ourselves instead of facing it like adults.

Congress has proudly refused to do its job.

So the guy we pay to actually run the nation did just that.

We can’t build a wall around the country. We can't arrest every illegal alien. We can’t deport everybody. It is simply not possible. We just don't have the resources, we don’t have the assets. And if Congress continues to refuse to do its job, on the 27th of this month we'll have even less resources to deal with immigration issues.

The president didn't grant anybody "amnesty," he simply did what any executive does and prioritized what assets he does have.

That’s not amnesty, that’s management.  

If we only have enough assets to go after part of the immigration issue in this country, then instead of arresting and deporting children maybe we should be going after violent criminals and drug lords and terrorists. And that is exactly what Obama’s executive order directed the Department of Homeland Security to do. Prioritize.

Sure, it’s easy to arrest and deport children. 

It’s easy to arrest and deport illegal immigrants who are washing dishes and cutting your grass and picking your fruit and sitting in college classes.

Sure, it makes you feel good, makes you think you’re actually doing something when you’re really not accomplishing a damned thing, while the real issues are out of sight and out of mind and out of the election cycle. Sure.

It’s always a whole lot easier to demand the impossible than to face reality.

But if you really want to address the illegal (and legal) immigration issues we face, then congress needs to do its goddamned job.

And they refuse.

And instead of demanding that their own representatives and senators do the job they were sent to Washington for, twenty-seven states sued the federal government to prevent the president from doing his.

And now it will be decided by the court. 

And you really have to admire the hypocritical irony, don’t you?

Think about it. Congress refused to do their job. They refuse to let the president do his. And now? Now the court will decide.

The very court these same people condemn for “legislating from the bench.” 

Think about that next time you hear a congressman complaining about “activist judges.”

If the court rules against the President, congress will pat themselves on the back and smirk in triumph. If Obama’s executive actions are struck down, conservatives will hail it as a great victory for democracy. They’ll cheer and grin smug smiles of glee at their cleverness, because they don’t really care about immigration at all, they only care about “beating” Obama.

Meanwhile, well, meanwhile we are no closer to a workable immigration policy and the real problems go unchecked.

And we, my fellow Americans, we have nobody to blame but ourselves.

In a democracy if you have a government made up of assholes, it's your own damned fault.

54 comments:

  1. "In a democracy if you have a government made up of assholes, it's your own damned fault."

    Which is what I've been saying for a long time now, and still we get debacles like 2010 and 2014. Unbelievable.

    Great job as always, Jim.

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    1. I just started to get to know you, as a writer, and I was really starting to like you, literally, as in I’ve been “liking” your stuff. I agree with much of what you say and I admire the fact that you’re out there doing the damn thing. I’ll admit, you seem to be a bit of a cocky, hard ass, and you’ve got a “if you don’t like it, then piss off” writing style, but I admire that too. I tend to take things too seriously and, as such, reading your work has helped me to “lighten up” about many of the things that usually just infuriate me.

      Thanks for that.

      Much appreciated.

      Then, to my dismay, you had to go and blame me for the current state of our government.

      “And we, my fellow Americans, we have nobody to blame but ourselves.
      In a democracy if you have a government made up of assholes, it's your own damned fault.”

      The United States of America is not a democracy, but a republic.

      Why is that? Because the authors of the Constitution did not trust in the American people. They feared mob rule. They didn’t think that people were smart enough, crafty enough, to run the county. In my AP History class, we learned that The Constitutional Convention should be noted for the people who weren’t there, the true revolutionaries, as well as for the men who were. The majority of men, who were there, were not into the whole “all men are created equal” thing. They thought it better to have an elected body of representatives. These same men believed that only white, male, property owners should vote for these representatives. These same men had some twisted ideas, as to what they considered property, and drafted them into the Constitution as well. Yes, indeed, they believed that governing was too crafty a matter for the average American citizen, a matter best left to crafty people, like Alexander Hamilton, who penned the elastic clause into the Constitution and, after pushing for ratification, went straight to the task of raping it.

      Yes, indeed, they believed that governing is not a job, best left to a bunch of assholes, which is why they did not construct America as a democracy.

      “…. And to the republic, for which it stands ….”

      Eureka!

      I, for one, am aware of this fact and try my best to do my part accordingly. I try to educate myself. I try to educate those around me. I try to bring my kid up to be a good citizen. I try to discuss ideas with people of different views. Often, I try to reason with unreasonable people.

      Thanks for that essay!

      I write. I share. I take my obligation to be an educated voter seriously. I try to encourage others. I have petitioned my government via change.org. See for yourself:

      https://www.change.org/p/u-s-house-of-representatives-restore-accountability-to-the-people

      Yes, Jim, I was just starting to really like you. I still do. Just don’t go blaming me for things that aren’t my fault.

      Don’t waste time blaming yourself either.

      Keep fighting the good fight.

      Make positive change where you can.

      Continue to do that and I think we could get along, as fellow Americans, just fine.

      -Gina Michele Bartkus

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  2. There are only two brothers getting all the government they paid for and their last name is a four-letter word, I sometimes think. Dr. Phil

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  3. Make sure you touch all the bases, Jim. Because you just hit another home run.

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  4. "No only have they refused to do their job, but they’ve managed to convince half the nose-pickers in this country that gridlock and failure to perform is some kind of feature instead of the system destroying bug it is."

    Superb analogy. There's a t missing, by the way.

    I really want to send this to every single Congressperson.

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    1. Yes! Is anything stopping you from doing so? I think everyone who reads this should do the same. I plan on it, if that's okay with Jim.

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  5. Yep! Agree with you all the way. I got out and voted, but I wasn't in the majority. Sucks to be me.
    Gretchen in KS

    P.S. Late in the essay, I think you missed a word. It's the sort of thing I do frequently, so I'm guessing that's why I noticed it. Here's the paragraph, with the word added in caps, since I can't figure out how to italicize.

    "But if you really want to address the illegal (and legal) immigration issues we face, then congress needs to DO its goddamned job."

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    1. Actually, millions more Democratic than Republican votes were cast in 2014. They were just gerrymandered away.

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    2. Gerrymandered, purged, placed on indefinite hold because of there being someone with the same name in a different state or voting district, or in any one of many other ways eliminated or suppressed.

      But I'm in Kansas. My county actually went D (shocker, there) but my state overwhelmingly did not. Far too many here listen either to the promises, regardless track record, or fell for the overhyped stories of supposed moral indiscretions having zero to do with performance or qualifications. (Sorry, I do NOT care, not one single iota, if a man visits a legal gentlemen's club if that's being given as a reason for him not to be able to govern. R's are so worried about "the gays" but they aren't really too friendly to the straights, either.)

      It also toasts my tush to notice that our R governor beat his D opponent for re-election by roughly 4%, and the Independent in that three-way race got roughly 4%. Without the spoiler, it could have been close enough for a recount, and I Desperately want a recount. This doesn't mean I don't think I's can run (or L's, or G's, etc.) but it makes me wish for Aussie style voting.

      Gretchen in KS

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  6. This. So very, very much.

    (Sorry to point out the typo - missing word between "to" and "its": "But if you really want to address the illegal (and legal) immigration issues we face, then congress needs to its goddamned job.")

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  7. A federal judge in Texas last night temporarily blocked the Obama administration’s executive actions on immigration. The judge, U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen, WHO OWES HIS BENCH TO G.W.B., responding to a suit filed by 26 Republican-run states, COULD NOT rule on the legality of immigration orders but said that "in his biased and unsupported opinion" there was "sufficient" merit to the challenge to warrant a suspension while the case goes forward.

    WHAT "WE" CAN DO to stop this shameful manipulation of the Judicial Process?

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  8. And as a bonus for Congress failing to fund the DHS because political grandstanding about immigration, the folks working for DHS who are considered 'essential personnel' will get the pleasure of continuing to work without receiving a paycheck! Oh sure, sure, they'll pay those folks...eventually. Non-essential personnel will collect unemployment and get to stay home, before getting the balance of their paychecks restored to them when they return to work. But essential folks? Nothing for you guys watching the border. Nothing for the folks screening passengers at airports. Not like those people have bills to pay, right? I mean, they make so much they're probably sitting on piles of gold! Except they don't, and they aren't, and thousands of people are about to deal with the prospect of losing their homes and cars, watching their credit scores plummet, telling their kids that it's okay if daddy doesn't have dinner. He wasn't that hungry anyway.

    The jackasses in Congress, so eager to blame each other, will happily fiddle (and leave town, oh yes, they will!) while Rome burns.

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  9. I'm just going to start with this, which I think is somewhat relevant to the immigration issue specifically:

    "The President shall be commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several states, when called into the actual service of the United States; he may require the opinion, in writing, of the principal officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices, and he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment."

    That is the first graf of Article 2, Section 2 of the United States Constitution.

    Should he choose, President Obama could, quite constitutionally, issue a blanket pardon to every undocumented resident currently within the United States borders.

    I almost wish he would, citing the relevant article and section, of course, simply to be able to watch innumerable right-wing heads explode.

    To date, he has not. Rather, he took action to prod a motionless Congress into something resembling activity. They have their options in that respect, of course. They can get together and fix the mess, or they can posture and fulminate, in a Learian extravaganza of sound and fury signifying nothing.

    Their chosen course does not merit further comment.

    It's also long past time we began holding some of our fellow citizens to account for the misbegotten characters they've voted into office, again and again and again. It's a terrible commentary on the American people, that such pandering to ignorance, bigotry, and fear can pay off, yet it continues to do so, and likely will until our collapse at the weight of it all.

    We, the people, need a bit of work, I suspect.

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  10. If the court rules against the President, congress will pat themselves on the back and smirk in triumph. If Obama’s executive actions are struck down, conservatives will hail it as a great victory for democracy. They’ll cheer and grin smug smiles of glee at their cleverness, because they don’t really care about immigration at all, they only care about “beating” Obama.

    Spot on and sooo f'ing sad.

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  11. I would add, in addition to medical and dental care – mental health. But that's probably asking too much. Hell, medical and dental seem to be asking too much.

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    1. Dental is considered asking too much for sure, and I remember surprising the hell out of a friend in Europe once when I pointed out that optometry and glasses are also considered extra here.

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  12. Never-mind stetting precedent. You know, if one party obstructs the operations of the Senate for six years while they're in the minority, why do they act surprised when it is done to them? Compromise got hung in effigy and lit on fire well before the President came into office. What is good for the goose is good for the gander, these days...

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    1. I don't know why you seem to care about the goose or the gander.
      Ask yourself, "Is it good for the country?", and act accordingly.

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  13. Jim, you had me at "...booger eating stupidity promoted as some kind of virtue, superstition, ignorant science denial, prayers and rain dances, and endless endless endless bullshit".

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  14. Jim, I whole-heartedly agree with everything you said here except for one thing.
    'The "government" we have now is completely our own fault'.
    I VOTE and I have, in almost every local, state, and federal election since I turned 18.
    I vote with my wallet where I can and I vote with a ballot for the candidate I judge to be the (least harmful in too many cases) best suited to the job at hand. I do not have the power to re-call the people who get elected if they aren't doing the kind of job I expect. I do have the ability to write letters and emails and CALL the people who are paid to represent MY interests and I DO that, frequently.
    I have come to the conclusion that the "systems" we have in place, ie the legislature, congress, senate, immigration, education, and health care, are so broken that they are beyond repair. I see no reason to hope that any single person can fix any of it. (It confuses me when people try to blame One President or two Brothers, or one speaker, Majority Whip, the currently sitting Supreme Court Justices, or Christians, or Muslims, or LGBT group... for all that is wrong here.)
    SO, if you think this is our fault and only HOW do you propose we do that?
    I enjoy your column immensely and thank you for sharing your very cogent thoughts with the rest of us.
    BAG

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    1. You've made a mistake, Bridget. You think I'm talking to liberals and progressives.

      I'm talking to conservatives and libertarians too.

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    2. Yes, Jim Wright, you are talking to conservatives and libertarians. Do you think they are listening? I haven't seen a whole lot of evidence of that. How can I send this essay to our Rep and Senators?

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    3. Carol, contact information for your Federal elected officials can be found at http://www.house.gov/ and http://www.senate.gov/

      "I'm talking to conservatives and libertarians too. " Jim, this is one of the reasons I appreciate you.

      Bridget, while there are large and deep problems, we could begin to make progress on them if the Republican Party and a substantial faction of our population had not gone crazy. They are crazy because a huge long-term well-funded effort has been made to promote the crazy and if this were to be ended, matters would improve.

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    4. if folks really wanna fix this stuff, then they need to start at the beginning, and throw the two party system in the garbage can. That's a start.

      http://cubic-dog.blogspot.com/2015/02/why-voting-as-independent-is-only-way.html

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    5. I believe Bridget is a concerned citizen, even diligent in that respect. I believe that when she asked, “SO, if you think this is our fault and only HOW do you propose we do that,” she was asking Jim for guidance.
      I am a new reader of Stonekettle Station, but I have not yet read a response to that question from Jim. It is important to understand that these systems are man made systems, not natural systems, and the laws that most of you are referring to are laws of man, not scientific laws. As such, man, through activism, can change them. The key point is activism. You actually have to do something and encourage others to do it as well. I can name countless people who have been extremely successful in this regard. Unfortunately, there are countless others, who can count assassination as a measure of their success. That is a truly terrifying thought to me: that they seem to hand out bullets to the head, as an award for that kind of achievement. It definitely makes you think, how successful do I want to be? Jim you seem to be very successful in developing a following. My big question now is how will you lead them? -GB

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  15. My first thought: It needed to be said.

    Then: Again. Wait, Jim has said this before.

    My fellow Americans, what we are facing is a serious shortage of 2x4's to pound it in.

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    1. Those are called thinking voters

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  16. "These people believe that in a world of eight billion, in a time of exponentially increasing complexity, in a time of rapidly changing challenges and dangers, that the best thing we can do as a country is … nothing. Don’t go too fast, don’t change, don’t advance, stall, hang back, let’s not be too hasty, wait, wait. And meanwhile the world flies past, new nations rise, new dangers, new challenges, and we sit squabbling among ourselves instead of facing it like adults."

    This part reminds me of when I was taking a Chinese history class in college, and we were learning about when China was the most powerful and most technological and culturally advanced civilization in the world. Then the emperor decided "we're good enough, we don't have to progress anymore, we can stop here." And then Europe passed them and came around to smash them a few hundred years later. I forget which dynasty this was offhand.

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    1. It was the last dynasty that mattered.

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  17. Since most of what you write is in the," I wish I'd written that" category. I'll share my dilemma. I'm struggling with the words that can illuminate this well and not exacerbate the issue. Thanks for keeping on. If there were an alternate paradigm available could it be implemented? The Zapatistas and the Kurds are on the cutting edge of real government. I wonder if any of the truths they are demonstrating can apply to a top tier crumbling empire.

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  18. Eleven score and nineteen years ago our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
    Now we are engaged in a great assholery, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure.

    BB
    It is for us, the ordinary, get the job done and done right, living from one paycheck to the next, hard working never going to drink the cream always going to be making payments two steps ahead of the bailiffs good hearted shat upon normal folks here to the unfinished work which our own fathers and mothers far, so nobly left us to do, it is for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining — that from all our honored history and honored dead and honored promise we take increased devotion to the cause of getting the assholes out of office, out of earshot and off our backs. That we here highly resolve that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom from assholes; and that this Congress of the assholes, by the assholes, for the assholes, shall not be allowed even one more term on this earth.

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    1. https://www.change.org/p/u-s-house-of-representatives-restore-accountability-to-the-people

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  19. So tired of people who think that, by not voting, they are making a "statement" about their dissatisfaction with the political process, that it somehow keeps their hands clean, to refuse to even try to counteract the stupid-votes.
    Really?? No, the statement they are actually making is: "I surrender my entire life, well-being, earnings, health, and the total future of my children to the whims and stupidity-fueled decisions made by people I do not trust, and do not respect. I do this because it takes less effort to complain and claim my hands are clean of any involvement in politics, than to actually get involved in working toward fielding better candidates for office and getting them elected, to work towards change." [insert childish whine of "its not MY fault, I didn't elect those idiots"]

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    1. That's exactly what happened in the great state of Kansas in the midterm election. Too many people decided that "my vote won't make a difference/I'm protesting against a broken system" or some other bullshit reason and therefore didn't bother going to the polls. Now our state is stuck with a homophobic, Koch-financed, tax-cutting for the rich, asshat in the governor's mansion, and our state faces a $600 million deficit next year. So his plan is to cut education funding, infrastructure spending, and to raise taxes on liquor and cigarettes. Not to mention that their non-vote also retained two Obama-hating GOP senators, one who doesn't even own a home in the state! And all of those who couldn't be bothered to vote are shocked at the result. We don't need a fountain of youth, we need a fountain of SMART!

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    2. Non-voters and too many uneducated voters

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  20. Well said once again. You always make so much sense.
    Elaine in Canada

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  21. To be fair, we stopped being a democracy or a republic a long time ago, with the rise of the corporate oligarchy. The Supreme Court just finalized the sale of our government to the new aristocracy with the Citizens United decision.

    And conservatives only complain about "activist" judges when it's not their agenda being enacted.

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    2. Brian, your comment had nothing whatsoever to do with Matty's comment, nor did it have anything whatsoever to do with the essay or the topic at hand. As such, it's been removed.

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  22. Barbara in the WoodsFebruary 17, 2015 at 2:02 PM

    Meanwhile, we have no functioning domestic or international policy from the slackers who control the Senate and House. Oh, yeah, their policy: if President Obama or the Democrats are fer it, they are agin it.

    Thanks for writing this post.

    Nice work if you can get it by fooling people too stupid to think about the consequences.

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    1. Barbara, the slackers have outsourced our policies. We can expect to be told what to do, at least on foreign policy, next week by Mr. Netanyahu.

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  23. As usual, you nail it with extraordinary (and pithy) clarity. But (I'm sure we are all asking ourselves) What in the hell can we do about it? Now? I surely don't know. If you have an idea, please share it, because the problems are so overwhelming I haven't a clue how to start, let alone how to fix this behemoth.

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  24. WHen you provide this list of the things that Congress is supposed to be doing, I think you are making two mistakes. One is to imagine that your personal prescriptions for what you think the government ought to do are universally agreed upon. Some of them sound fine to me, others I desperately don't want to see implemented under any circumstances. Which ones those are are less important in this context than that this is so. Some of the things that you claim are the job of Congress to implement are flatly unconstitutional as well. They care clearly NOT the job of Congress from a legal point of view. I understand that you may still want them to be implemented anyway, but legalistically speaking, they are not the job of Congress.

    On a broader list of them however, lots of people might agree with the ends you would like to see, but there is a lot of disagreement as to the means, and the means do matter. If I said "I think it would be a great idea if I had a million dollars." you might well agree that this would indeed be a nice goal (you can have a million too!) but we might differ if the means of acquiring the million bucks weren't the same. Stealing it, printing it, and earning it through trade are not equally desirable ways of getting a million bucks. If we can't agree on what the right way to get to a desirable end then we can't do it together now can we? These disagreements are important and real and ignoring the implementation details on the grounds of "But I just want the consequences but not the cause." is the cry of a infant, not an adult. Alas, there are plenty of infants out there keeping good things from happening. There are also lots of responsible adults out there who when faced with plans to accomplish desirable ends by undesirable (or even suicidal means) are going to (loudly, and perhaps with some foot stomping) say "no". I'm glad that they are out there. Somebody needs to say no when what is being proposed is wrong.

    When you figure out how to let go of your desire to get the ends without the means call me, I can help. If you figure out a way to get the adults from stopping unworkable and immoral means of pursuing impossible or undesirable ends call me too...so I can run as fast as I can to get out of the way.

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    1. "Some of the things that you claim are the job of Congress to implement are flatly unconstitutional as well. They care clearly NOT the job of Congress from a legal point of view. I understand that you may still want them to be implemented anyway, but legalistically speaking, they are not the job of Congress.

      Be more specific, enumerate the specific points mentioned in the essay that are not congress's job.

      Your second paragraph is a strawman. Now strawmen can be a useful tool for planning purposes, but in your case you created a strawman specifically so you could condescend to me about being an adult. And on that note, fuck you.

      If you're going to run away, Brian, do it now and quit wasting my time.

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    2. Brian,
      I don't know what your point is and have decided not to care.
      Please run away.

      Delete
  25. Aye, that's about the size of it. Thanks again, Jim.

    Here in Indianastan, it isn't much better.

    I vote, I promote information that I think is in the public best interest, and I consider myself to be intelligently knowledgeable about the topics I hold dear. Even so, the asshatted fuckery brought about by our current executive and legislative departments continues unabated, despite loud complaints from those who will be affected by the decisions and changes in policy.

    When I'm Supreme Divine Emperor Potentate of the Planet, it's gonna be different, I can tell ya that fer free.

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  26. Over on the Daily Kos a couple of lawyers got into it in the comments on the story about the Texas judge's stay. Basically, it's not a slam dunk for the Executive Branch, not because of the deportation priority, which is perfectly defensible, but because of the issuance of work permits which were set to begin tomorrow. The judge felt that the work permits were sort of a license to break the law against employing undocumented workers and more time was required to sort that out. That actually does seem to be, in the words of some left-leaning, sympathetic, attorneys, a tricky situation with no clear precedent. In similar situations with no or murky precedent where a significant new right or benefit is in the balance, stays are often granted. It was mostly a condition where the Pubs found themselves a convenient judge but it's not a wild-eyed-insane decision with no basis in law.

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  27. In response to the idea that every thinking American should vote or forever hold their peace about the politicians in place... Most of the people I know don't vote out of hopelessness caused by a feeling of lack of any control over the political process or representation within it. If nothing you do matters with regards to representation, what is the point of wasting your time voting? I have beliefs that have never been represented or expressed by any politician I am aware of - the best way I can fight for change isn't by voting but by making my presence and beliefs known on a local level. I can go vote for a politician that in either case isn't on the right side (for anyone in my opinion), or I can not waste my time, instead spending it on activities that matter toward winning the battle - in the metaphorical sense of the term.

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    1. MLK tried. What would have happened if he gave up. Bob

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    2. If everyone of good will sat around waiting for perfection we would be ten times more fucked than we are already. Get off your butt and hold your nose and vote for the least stinking turd already! The way from here to a better place doesn't happen in one bound for fuck's sake, it's a game of quarter inches, that has to be fought every step of the way.

      A little less evil, one tiny step at a time, is the only way we will ever get there!

      BB

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    3. You should vote. Voting is not a waste of time. People have died to give you the right to vote. At the very least, vote out of respect for them. We absolutely need more thinking voters! Do not just vote. Get more involved in the political process as well. Everything is political. For sure, we have proof of that by now, sometimes scary, scary proof. The Republican Party won the majority in the past election, an election with one of the lowest voter turnouts in history. They now claim that “the people” have spoken. They now claim to represent us in pushing this bullshit agenda. They now represent “us” because more people like “you” did not vote. Please, for me, vote because I am so sick & tired of this kind of shit. Thanks. -GB

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  28. One of the things that really drives me crazy about Conservatives is that they think the Bill of Rights should only apply to American citizens. When it plainly uses the term "persons," and never "citizens."

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