The Unitary Executive

Since I have been watching and researching our government, over the last 50 years, I have always thought that the 3 equal branches of government was a pretty good way for this country to be controlled…..but since the election of Trump it has been moving to what could only be called a “Unitary Executive” form of government….

That term may have a confusion factor built in so I shall do what I always try to do…..explain and define….

This theory holds that Congress cannot limit the president’s control of the executive branch because the Constitution sets up a hierarchical system whereby the president has the most power. Supporters argue that Congress can’t set up independent executive agencies and counsels that aren’t controlled by the president. Moreover, different parts of the executive branch can’t sue each other because it would be a violation of separation of powers for the courts to intervene in such disputes.

Sounds a bit imperial to me……

Let’s look a bit deeper into this……https://www.thoughtco.com/unitary-executive-theory-the-imperial-presidency-721716

What is the bottom line…..

Those making originalist claims bear a burden of proof to show a clear public meaning circa 1787. For those claiming that Article II requires presidential removal at will, this burden is especially difficult in the face of textual silence, more than a century of legislative practice and almost a century of judicial precedent. First and most fundamentally, this new historical evidence and interpretation show that it has been an error to rely on the Decision of 1789 to overcome the Federalist essays by both Madison and Hamilton. Second, the evidence from 1789 actually points in the opposite direction, a decision against unitary structures.

There are several immediate ramifications of this. It is important to recognize that the key precedents for presidential removal power rely on historical errors. One can still construct a presidential removal power from a structural argument, the Vesting Clause, and the Take Care Clause. But this more open-ended basis of removal means a less formal rule of separation of powers, with more balance with other constitutional texts and values: the Necessary and Proper Clause, the “faithful execution” clauses, and the fundamental principle of checks and balances. The convention, the ratification, and the first Congress all show that Congress has the power to set reasonable conditions on presidential power—so long as they do not functionally undermine a president’s ability to execute the laws. Under this reasoning, for example, entrenching a bureaucracy in order to obstruct an incoming administration—like a Midnight Judges Act of 1801 but for the administrative state, to create something like a deep state or deeply burrowed state—could be an unconstitutional intrusion on the executive power.

https://www.lawfareblog.com/imaginary-unitary-executive

To be fair I will give the opposing theory from the Conserv publication Reason…..

If there is one thing that most conservative and libertarian originalists agree on, it is that executive power under the Constitution must be “unitary.” That doesn’t necessarily mean that the president’s power is unlimited, or even particularly broad. It does mean that whatever authority the executive has must be controlled by the president. He is free to hire, fire, and issue orders to all other executive branch officials, as he sees fit—except in a few cases specifically noted in the Constitution, such as the requirement of Senate confirmation for cabinet officers. This issue came up recently when the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to approve a bill that would protect special Counsel Robert Mueller from being fired by President Donald Trump—the man whose activities and assciates Mueller is charged with investigating. The bill passed the Committee by a 14-7 vote. But several GOP senators—including some, like Ben Sasse, who are no fans of Trump—voted “no,” citing constitutional considerations based on unitary executive theory.

In this era of Trumpism most of the traditional theories are but a moot point.

In closing a quote from Hannah Arendt…..

“Never has our future been more unpredictable, never have we depended so much on political forces that cannot be trusted to follow the rules of common sense and self-interest—forces that look like sheer insanity, if judged by the standards of other centuries. It is as though mankind had divided itself between those who believe in human omnipotence (who think that everything is possible if one knows how to organize masses for it) and those for whom powerlessness has become the major experience of their lives.”

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The Social Security Lie

The idea of a national retirement plan is a sound idea but over the decades it has been bastardize to it resembles nothing of the original intent.

Social Security is the term used for the Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program in the United States, run by the Social Security Administration (SSA), which is a federal agency. While best known for retirement benefits, it also provides survivor benefits and disability income. It is independent of a lump-sum pension.

Social Security is an insurance program. Workers pay into the program, typically through payroll withholding where they work. They can earn up to four credits each year.

For 2020, every time someone earns $1,410, he or she receives one credit until hitting $5,640, or four credits.2 That money goes into two Social Security trust funds—the OASI Trust Fund for retirees and the DI Trust Fund for disability beneficiaries—where it is used to pay benefits to people currently eligible for them. The money that is not spent remains in the trust funds.

A Board of Trustees oversees the financial operation of the two Social Security trust funds. Four of the six members are the secretaries of the departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services, and the Commissioner of Social Security, while the remaining two members are public representatives appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

There you now know what it is and how it works….and you did not need to waste your time on Google.

Sadly there are all sorts of trouble and problems with the program….problems created by politicians trying desperately to kill the program.

The “three-legged stool”: That phrase may not be familiar to everyone, but most people who work in public policy or private-sector insurance have heard it used to describe the U.S. retirement system. It suggests that our system for retirement security was designed to stand on three “legs”: Social Security, employer pensions, and individual savings.

Subliminally, the image evokes efficiency. A stool is a chair for people and a table for small things, but at a much smaller size and with 25 percent fewer legs.

The “stool” idea is pernicious for at least three reasons:

https://www.alternet.org/2020/10/theres-a-3-pronged-lie-that-un/

Time for the next president to sure up this program that more Americans depend on for their retirement from the workforce.  As it is today they will most likely die before they can enjoy that much coveted retirement.

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Tribalism!

In case you are not sure….it is the polarization of the American psyche in politics and social issues. I have given my thoughts several times on my other blog, In Saner Thought…..here is a read to save time…..https://lobotero.com/2020/07/21/confronting-tribalism/ that post has several references and my thoughts on the silliness we are experiencing these days.

Let’s look at the polarization in this nation more closely…..and how can we overcome this social anchor around our collective necks?

Growing up in the early 2000s, I used to see those little “Coexist” bumper stickers on cars all over town. I don’t see them anymore. Maybe the bumper sticker trend faded, perhaps I moved to a more conservative area (let’s be honest, those people were liberals), or maybe people just gave up on the idea of 330 million people all getting along.

The idea of coexistence does, unfortunately, feel quite quaint these days. 

Polls and studies back up what we all anecdotally know to be true: Americans are deeply divided and increasingly hostile toward those with opposing views. Startling numbers of Americans say they would go so far as to fire someone based on their vote for president. Meanwhile, 56 percent say they expect to see violence following the election, and another 61 percent fear we are on the verge of a second civil war.

To be honest, this friction shouldn’t come as that much of a surprise. 

Have you ever marveled at how different we are? Or really contemplated the sheer number of ethnicities, nationalities, religions, cultures, or backgrounds represented in this country? Before even considering political ideologies, our country is filled with people whose lived experiences, beliefs, and customs are radically different. 

https://fee.org/articles/there-s-only-one-way-to-stop-polarization-from-tearing-america-apart/

We are entering into the final stretch (less than 7 days) before the election of 2020….and now would be a good time for all voters to think about what all this derision is doing to the country….if it keeps up there will be very little left of the experiment that the Founders worked so hard to produce.

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Social Conservatives?

I have been amazed over the decades at the thinking of the so-called “social conservatives”……but what is social conservatism?

There is a short answer and I will post it here (any further desire to learn should be taken to the Google machine)…..believes in principle in general government regulation of people’s personal freedom, often as a result of their religious beliefs

Social conservatives tend to be against abortion, gay marriage, embryonic stem cell research, physician assisted suicide, gun control and affirmative action and for prayer in public schools, capital punishment and supporting Israel.
Are you a social conserv?  Before you answer that….read on…..
First I need to point out that today’s definition of conservatism is very in common with the philosophical theory of conservatism.
1. The inclination, especially in politics, to maintain the existing or traditional order.
2. A political philosophy or attitude that emphasizes respect for traditional institutions and opposes the attempt to achieve social change though legislation or publicly funded programs.
Do you need more?  If so Google awaits.
(Pause here for the dash to the internet)
Some surveys say that the majority of Americans are socially conservative…….really?

Lead researcher Gordon Hodson told LiveScience that the results of the study indicate a vicious cycle, in which people with low intelligence are drawn to socially conservative ideologies. In turn, those ideologies can contribute to prejudices.

“Socially conservative ideologies tend to offer structure and order,” he said, explaining why those with lower intelligence may gravitate toward the right. “Unfortunately, many of these features can contribute to prejudice.”

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/the-hot-button/study-links-low-intelligence-with-right-wing-beliefs/article543361/

There has been more research…….even to what is termed “emotional intelligence”……

A recent study out of Belgium scientifically supports the notion that people who scored lower on emotional ability tests tend to have right-wing and racist views.

Emotional intelligence is the capability of individuals to recognize their own emotions and those of others, discern between different feelings and label them appropriately, use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior, and manage and/or adjust emotions to adapt to environments or achieve one’s goal.

https://www.good.is/a-new-study-shows-that-people-with-low-emotional-intelligence-are-more-likely-to-vote-republican

Does that help explain the rise in bigotry these days?

These findings point to a vicious cycle, according to lead researcher Gordon Hodson, a psychologist at Brock University in Ontario. Low-intelligence adults tend to gravitate toward socially conservative ideologies, the study found. Those ideologies, in turn, stress hierarchy and resistance to change, attitudes that can contribute to prejudice, Hodson wrote in an email to LiveScience.

Could all this explain the election of Donald the Orange?
I my book it explains it to a tee…low intelligence means that you will fall for whatever election scam is being fed you through your choice of media outlet.

President Donald Trump’s rhetoric is often referred to as “dog whistle politics.”

In politician speak, a dog whistle is language that conveys a particular meaning to a group of potential supporters. The targeted group hears the “whistle” because of its shared cultural reference, but others cannot.

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Are We Still A Constitutional Government?

College of Political Knowledge

Lecture Series……

Whenever someone does not agree with me about our democracy that tells me that we are a constitutional government (republic) not a democracy.

These days of protests and division among the people the question arises……..

Okay if that is can we still claim to be a constitutional government?

Answer the first question…… just what is a constitutional government?

The government of the United States cannot be intelligently discussed as a constitutional system until government; and the answer to that question is in effect a theory of politics.

….Read On……

What is Constitutional Government?

I know Americans are proud as punch over their ground breaking Constitution….but recent events have me asking do we truly believe and support and constitutional government?

Legal scholars spend a lot of time debating the proper way to interpret the Constitution. Political scientists study voting blocks on the Court or trends in judicial appointments. But to think about the future of constitutional government, we should give more attention to the ultimate authority behind the Constitution – “We the People,” as the Preamble calls us.

The Founders did not think all people were equally capable of sustaining constitutional government. At the outset of the French Revolution, for example, Alexander Hamilton wrote to his friend Lafayette, expressing a “foreboding of ill.” He warned, among other things, about the “vehement character” of the French people and their susceptibility to “philosophic politicians” and “speculatists” [sic] propounding doctrines not compatible with “the composition of your nation.”

Social trends in contemporary America are warning signs for the prospects for constitutional government even here. I don’t mean that we will soon succumb to a terrible tyranny. Still, we should not be at all confident about maintaining our well-defined constitutional boundaries or the political stability they have provided us for so long.

The main problem we face is the degree of political polarization. Americans have always had differences. After all, we fought a terrible civil war in the Nineteenth Century. But after that upheaval, subsequent generations found it easier to work together – and postpone debate on issues where they could not agree. The political parties were diverse coalitions. Democrats and Republicans were as likely to disagree with fellow party-members as with adherents of the opposing party.

Do We Still Support Constitutional Government?

Well do we still support a Constitutional government?

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2020 Alternatives #6–Those Damn Socialists

Finally this is for all those “socialist” that the GOP and conservs thinks is the Dems…little do they know they are wrong….these are the true socialist in the running for 2020.

WE have three socialist parties that are running candidates for president…..the Socialist Equality Party, Party of Socialism& Liberation and the Socialist Workers Party…….

First the candidates for the SEP…….

Joseph Kishore is the national secretary of the SEP in the US, a position he has held since 2008. He joined the SEP in 1999 after becoming politically radicalized by the Clinton administration’s war against Serbia.

Over the past two decades, he has written hundreds of articles for the World Socialist Web Site and as national secretary has directed the party’s intervention in the struggles of workers and youth.

Norissa Santa Cruz joined the SEP in 2013. She was initially introduced to the SEP’s youth movement, the International Youth and Students for Social Equality, in 2011 following its intervention in protests to defend public education.

Raised in a working-class family in San Diego County, Santa Cruz would go on to study cultural anthropology and ethnomusicology at UC San Diego. She currently works as an administrator in graduate education. She has written extensively on the issues faced by health care workers and educators, as well as the bipartisan attacks on immigrants and refugees.

https://www.socialism2020.org/candidates

Next is the Socialists Workers Party……not a lot of info on these candidates….

Alyson Kennedy (Texas)
Presidential Nominee

Malcolm Jarrett (Pennsylvania)
Vice Presidential Nominee

Finally the Party of Socialism & Liberty

PSL Ten Point Plan for 2020…..https://www.lariva2020.org/program

Gloria La Riva is a labor, community and anti-war activist based in San Francisco, California. In 2016, as the presidential candidate of the Party for Socialism and Liberation and the Peace and Freedom Party, Gloria received the most votes of any socialist presidential candidate since 1976.

Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Gloria attended Brandeis University where she was active in affirmative action struggles. Gloria has been a key organizer of many mass demonstrations and other actions opposing the wars and occupation in Central America, Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, Yugoslavia and elsewhere.

https://www.lariva2020.org/meet_gloria

Sunil Freeman is a lifelong activist and cultural worker. He is the child of parents who met as workers at the refugee camp in Kurukshetra during the time of India’s independence and partition. Growing up in the Maryland suburbs of Washington D.C., Sunil, along with his family, were active participants in the mass anti-Vietnam War movement, formative experiences that brought Sunil into solidarity with all the movements of the oppressed sweeping the world during that time.

Sunil, a poet and essayist, has contributed to and edited major literary journals. He joined the PSL in 2005 after becoming an organizer with the ANSWER Coalition in the anti-Iraq War movement. Sunil has participated in and organized dozens of events in opposition to US wars abroad, against the US blockade of Cuba, and against criminal sanctions levied by the US against a range of countries.

https://www.lariva2020.org/meet_sunil

There you have it…the only true socialists on the ballots this election cycle.

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2020 Alternatives #5–Progressives

I admit it…..I am a Progressive and NO it is not the same as being a Democrat.  Progressives stand for moving the country forward….Dems stand for the status quo remaining….not the same at all.

I also admit that I believe that there should be a Progressive Party……true Progressive not some lame ass attempt to garner votes by claiming to be a progressive.

I tried years ago to get people interested in Progressivism…..https://lobotero.com/2010/11/11/how-about-a-bull-moose-party-1/

How About A New “Bull Moose Party”? #2

It was a dud….but that damn silly Tea Party took off and its bigotry has lead to our society today.

All that is history….there is a Progressive Party….a truly minor party but there is one none the less…..and in 2020 its candidates are Dario Hunter…..and his stands on the pressing issues of today…..https://www.dariohunter.com/on_the_issues

About Dario…..

I was born in New Jersey to an African-American mother and a Persian father. We were a working poor family and for us life was a constant struggle to make ends meet. I held on to my goals, getting into Princeton and through three law degrees. I know what it’s like to come from a hard life, but I also know what it’s like to make good on little more than faith and hard work.

I’ve previously taught as a high school English teacher, served as a K-8 school administrator and as a community college instructor. I enjoy giving back through education and I believe that it is the key to our advancement as a country, just as it has been key to my own personal upliftment. I formerly practiced law in Canada and more recently as an international environmental lawyer at a firm in Israel-Palestine.

https://www.dariohunter.com/about_dario

I know that this candidate is a long shot but call it the romantic in me but I feel that he deserves some recognition for his attempt.

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2020 Alternative #4–Independent

Now here is an interesting bunch…..most Americans claim to be independent….when in reality they are just too cowardly to admit who they will vote for….if they were truly independent there would be viable alternatives to the silliness of the two major parties.

There is actually some candidates that are running as “Independent”…….this tine around it is Brock Pierce and Karla Ballard……and there slogan is “5 core principles to bring the country together”….these are Liberty, Sustainability, Wellness, Humanity and Truth……bold and sweeping principles and if they appeal to you then check them out in more detail…..https://www.brock.vote/principles

Brock Pierce is a candidate for President of the United States in the 2020 election. He is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and father. Brock has an extensive track record of founding, advising and investing in innovative businesses and foundations has made him a global thought leader.

Born into a middle-class home in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to a mother who was a minister and a father who worked in construction. Brock began his early career as a child-actor, making movies like The Mighty Ducks and First Kid. At 16, Brock believed the internet would change the world and that inspired him to become an entrepreneur. Brock has co-founded, advised, and funded over 100 companies. In 2014 he put the U.S. dollar on the Blockchain when he co-founded Tether. Tether is the #1 most traded cryptocurrency with annual trading volume of over US$10 Trillion.

Does this appeal to you….then do some research and check them closely.

Please do not get this man confused with that idiot Kanye….he is a party unto himself.

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2020 Alternative #3–Reform Party

My continuing series on the alternative candidates just in case there are those out there like me that does not want a return of the status quo in our politics……the country deserves better.

This post will be about the Reform Party…..you may have heard of them…if you are old then it would be because of Ross Perot’s run for the presidency…..if you are too young for that then possibly it will be because Donald Trump tried to run as their candidate in 2000….but failed miserably.

When the ARP was founded, Jackie Salit noted in the Christian Science Monitor: “At its founding meeting in Kansas City in 1997, the 40 black delegates in the room, led by the country’s foremost African-American independent – Lenora Fulani – represented the first time in US history that African-Americans were present at the founding of a major national political party.”

The ARP has yet to organize in more than a few states. In the 2000, 2004, and 2008 elections, the American Reform Party supported Ralph Nader for president. The ARP is not a political party in the conventional sense. It does not have ballot access in any state, and it does not run candidates. It supports third-party candidates and independents who support the primary principals of the Party’s platform.

About 2010–2011, the party shifted from a relatively centrist platform to a Tea Party-style fiscal conservative one. In the 2012 presidential election, the ARP endorsed Republican Party nominee Mitt Romney against incumbent president Barack Obama In the 2016 presidential election, the Party endorsed the Republican candidate Donald Trump.

The Core Principles of the Reform Party are extensive……if interested here they are…..

No more gifts.

● No more trips or junkets paid for by special interests.

● No more free meals.

● Pass laws with significant penalties – not rules.

● Give Congress and the White House the same retirement plans and health care as the average citizen.

So many more…..https://reformparty.org/about-reform-party/core-principles/

I would say that Trump has failed in the first section completely….and the more you read the more you can see that he has done so completely.

Rocky de la FuenteDarcy Richardson Rocky de la Fuente (California)
Presidential Nominee
Darcy Richardson (Florida)
Vice Presidential NomineeAlso the nominees of the Reform Party, American Independent Party of California and Natural Law Party of Michigan

For more party info…..https://reformparty.org/

Some of the minor third parties will be covered in #4

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2020 Alternative #2–Greens

2020 Election Series #2

The next largest voting bloc is that of the Green Party…if you are someone who is set on saving the environment and wants to clean up politics then the Green Party USA just may be your cup of herbal tea.

But if you are not sure then maybe this will help you in your search…..

Ecologism or green political theory is the most recent of schools of political thinking. On the one hand, it focuses on issues that are extremely old in politics and philosophical inquiry –such as the relationship between the human and nonhuman worlds, the moral status of animals, what is the ‘good life’, and the ethical and political regulation of technological innovation. Yet on the other, it isalso characterised as dealing with some specificallycontemporaryissues such as the economic and political implications of climate change, peak oil, overconsumption, resource competition and conflicts,and rising levels of global and national inequalities. It is also an extremely broad school of political thought covering a wide variety of concerns, contains a number of distinct sub-schools of green thought (here sharing a similarity with other political ideologies) and combines normative and empirical scientific elements in a unique manner making it distinctive fromother political ideologies.

Click to access Green_Political_Theory_John_Barry.pdf

The Green Party has some excellent ideas and ideology…..

Their platform is kind extensive and if you want to check it our in pdf…..Platform as PDF

If you prefer just click on the link…..https://www.gp.org/platform

Howie HawkinsAngela Walker Howie Hawkins (New York)
Presidential Nominee
Angela Walker (South Carolina)
Vice Presidential Nominee 

Also the nominees of Socialist Party USA

Now you have the stuff about the party then let’s move on to their 2020 presidential candidate……

If yo truly care about the ecology of the nation and social issues then the Green Party could be the vote you seek.

Next up will be the Reform Party…

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