The Hillary Clinton Pragmatic-Electability Premise

There are two intertwined premises looming large when one argues in favor of supporting Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination. The first premise is that Hillary is the more electable candidate. The second premise is that Hillary will have the most success working with a (presumably) Republican-controlled congress. But, should we accept these premises?

• • •

Congress Shall Make No Law: Religious Freedom, And The Absolutist Exercise Thereof

As of April of this year, some twenty states had enacted so-called “religious freedom” laws, with similar legislation pending in another half-dozen states. But why do states need such laws when the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion? The modern “religious freedom” movement, which took hold during the Clinton administration, was in response to a Supreme Court ruling in 1990 (“Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v. Smith“). The case “determined that the state could deny unemployment benefits to a person fired for violating a state prohibition on the use of peyote, even though the use of the drug was part of a religious ritual.”

• • •

The Politics Of Fear And Ebola In America

I tuned into my local news last night, and as you might guess, Ebola dominated the broadcast. And maybe that would be acceptable if this coverage, using title graphics like “Ebola Outbreak,” and “Ebola Crisis,” was centered in West Africa. Nope.

• • •

Do We Stamp A ‘Moral High Ground’ Guarantee On Each Cruise Missile We Launch At Syria?

So it looks like we are getting ourselves involved in yet another war. And I don’t really care what the Obama administration wants to call it. When you launch cruise missiles into another country, that’s an act of war. You can attempt justify it, you can make your case, and even if you were correct, it changes nothing. War is war. Or let’s put it another way so that everyone can understand. If another country took an aggressive action against the United States, and we called that aggression an act of war (which we would), than it is still an act of war when we do it to them.

• • •

What Will U.S. Military Force Against Syria Accomplish?

Today President Obama announced he decided the United States will use military force against Syria for its chemical weapon use. The President said he would seek the approval of congress, but noted that he has the executive power to authorize this action without congressional approval. That is something in stark contrast to his previous stance as Senator. In 2007, while on the presidential campaign trail, Obama said, “The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation.” I know we are supposed to believe presidents are privy to more information than us mere mortals, but this seems like a huge compromise of ethics, not to mention constitutionally questionable.

• • •
1 2 3 5