Blog No. 167. Donald Trump and The Silence of the Lambs

As nearly everyone on the planet knows by now, when President Trump met with legislative leaders last Thursday to discuss immigration, he referred to immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and African countries as immigrants from  “shithole countries.” He singled out Haiti specifically, saying “Why do we need more Haitians? Take them out.” And lest anyone[…]

Blog No. 128 In the Ninth Circuit a Ruling and in Washington the Theatre of the Absurd

The Ninth Circuit Ruling On Thursday afternoon, the motions panel of the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion that kept in place the Temporary Restraining Order that had been issued by District Judge James Robart. The ruling was a stunning defeat for the Trump Administration and it is not clear how matters will proceed from here.[…]

Blog No. 127 The Madness of King Donald

The unusual behavior of Donald Trump during the campaign, following the election, and in recent days, has generated considerable comment focusing on his mental health. For example, a U.S. News article, “Temperament Tantrum,” reported that “Lawmakers and experts say they are troubled by Trump’s extraordinary focus on his own brand and popularity, including frequent and[…]

Blog No. 126 Trump: Down the Rabbit Hole With Humpty Trumpty

Last weekend, beginning on Friday, provided ample opportunity for Trump watching. For many, however, Trump’s demagoguery, insufferable self-absorption and indifference to the truth made it a painful experience. The inaugural address was a demagogic tour de force, exaggerating in almost a single breath both the magnitude of the country’s problems and the new President’s capacity[…]

Welcome to RINOcracy 2.0

RINOcracy.com was founded in May, 2013 as a voice within the Republican Party, albeit a voice dissenting from party orthodoxy on some significant issues. The 2013 “Welcome to RINOcracy,” which appears below, explained the origin of the name, some of my political background and offered brief thoughts on several issues. Now, however, things have changed.[…]

Special Bulletin. Birthright Citizenship.

In a previous Special Bulletin, we briefly addressed the proposal made by Donald Trump (and supported in varying degrees by some other Republican candidates) to eliminate “birthright citizenship.” Birthright citizenship, as everyone must know by now refers to citizenship conferred on anyone who is born in this country without regard to the citizenship or status of his or her parents.

In our Special Bulletin posted on August 18, we wrote: […]

Special Bulletin. Annals of Self-Inflicted Wounds: Immigration and DHS Funding

In Blog No. 55, on December 20, we discussed the objections to the Omnibus Spending Bill raised by opponents of the President’s executive action with respect to immigration. We wrote:

We too have objected to the President’s action, but have noted that as a practical matter there is likely little that Republicans can – or should attempt to – do about it. (The omnibus bill funded the Department of Homeland Security only through the end of February so as to present another opportunity at that time for budgetary mischief inspired by Obama’s immigration initiative.) We are hopeful that cooler heads will again prevail in February.

Our view has not changed, but we are still waiting—and hoping—for the cooler heads to take control.Elephant-Fight1 […]

Blog No. 52 Immigration: The Scrap Between President Obama and the Republicans and a Calmer View

A starting place for discussing the current furor over President Obama’s actions on immigration is to understand that the President and many Republicans have, each for their own political purposes, exaggerated the impact of those actions. Speaking on Fox News Sunday on November 16, in anticipation of the President’s announcement, George Will wisely observed that: “It’s going to shield from deportation millions of people who actually face no realistic prospect of deportation. He’s going to give work permits to millions of people who are already working.”

Will went on to describe the proposed policy as one about which intelligent people could agree or disagree. He focused his criticism on the process, which he described as “execrable” and a violation of the “etiquette of democracy.” In a somewhat similar vein, we had observed in Blog No. 50 that:

We sympathize with the President’s goals in this area and understand his impatience, but we believe that creating protections for illegal immigrants that the law does not authorize, and that Congress has thus far declined to provide, would be a serious mistake. Although we support comprehensive immigration reform generally, and in particular the bill passed by the Senate, we think that acting outside the law and in defiance of Congress would be a major setback to reaching agreement on immigration, and most likely, a range of other issues.

Nothing in the President’s actions, or the reaction to them, has changed our mind. […]

Blog No. 41. The Mess at the Border (and in Washington).

The surge of unaccompanied children from Central America across our southern border has produced what is generally recognized to be a mess. Sadly, it has been accompanied by the familiar mess in Washington with the usual antagonists, the Administration and Congress, Republicans and Democrats, struggling over how to respond. And the border crisis appears to have made the goal of “comprehensive immigration reform” more elusive than ever.Children-at-border […]

Blog No. 20. What now for Republicans? (Schadenfreude is not a policy.)

Schadenfreude: a feeling of enjoyment that comes from seeing or hearing about the troubles of other people.

Republicans may be forgiven if they have indulged themselves in a bit of Schadenfreude over the continuing debacle of Obamacare.  To be sure, that debacle could hardly have come at a more opportune time. The furies unleashed by the website failures and the cancellation of insurance policies served to soften, if not erase, the public disdain for the Republicans’ recent antics: the ill-advised gambits with the government shutdown and the debt ceiling. Nevertheless, those furies, and the agonies they have produced in Democrats, may prove to be ephemeral. A diet of Schadenfreude does not provide much nutrition, and it surely is not a policy. […]