Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Two Developments on Pearl Harbor Day 2015

Last night, in South Carolina, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump called for a "total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States." Click here to read the New York Times coverage of the event.

Last night, in Hudson, Third Ward aldermen John Friedman and Henry Haddad and Common Council president Don Moore, introduced a resolution authored by Friedman reaffirming "our commitment to the ideals of freedom and tolerance that our great nation was and is founded upon" and urging "city departments, local businesses, and charitable organizations to work with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and other governmental and non-governmental agencies to provide shelter and sustenance for refugee families relocating to Hudson and integrating into our communities." Click here to read the full text of the resolution.


  1. So, the day after the National Counterterrorism Center reported to the Department of Homeland Security that jihadist terrorists have explored the refugee crisis to infiltrate Western Civilization, our puny Common Council decides to make its mark on a national policy issue.

    "The measure was placed on the aldermen's desks at the motions of Moore, Friedman and Alderman Henry Haddad" (R-S).

    Mind you, these are the same Council members who undermined the national policy for combined sewers in July, and in June refused to sponsor a Resolution to commit to a 4-page Short Environmental Assessment Form for their polluting sewer proposal.

    No, they didn't care about that, because the actual needs of the city are less exciting than an opportunity to showcase their rarified moral feelings to the world.

    Obviously this is a gimmick, with the duel purpose of creating an opportunity for moral preening, while also engineering a chance to vilify anyone who has any reservations about the idea - especially among their fellow Council members.

    In other words, they will use the refugee issue invidiously to achieve political points inside the Council Chamber. That's how cynical I think these people are, no matter what they tell themselves.

    This Resolution is not about refugees; it's about yearning for a national headline. They must have forgotten what happened the last time they attempted this:


  2. If this is cynical, its the kind of cynicism I I'm very comfortable supporting.

    1. I was questioning the Aldermen's motives more than commenting on the issue. They're different things, though I'm happy they coincide for you.

    2. If the right thing can be accomplished, even for the wrong reasons, it's still the right thing. Charity wouldn't get very far in this world if some "moral preening" wasn't permitted as its reward.

  3. And what exactly motivated "Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) (who) revealed portions of a classified letter from the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) on Monday"? While this leak has gotten some play in the right-wing media, it does seem just a little bit criminal.

  4. I don't agree with Donald Trump, and in fact I despise him.

    Now that that's out of the way, Rep. Michael McCaul is the Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, and he's at least tacitly referencing Article I, Section 8, clause 4 of the US Constitution, which gives Congress the power "To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization."

    This was reiterated by the US Supreme Court in Turner v. Williams, 1904:

    'We regard it as settled by our previous decisions that the United States can, as a matter of public policy, by Congressional enactment, forbid aliens or classes of aliens from coming within their borders, and expel aliens or classes of aliens from their territory."

    So what we're watching is the natural tension Madison designed between two competing branches of government, the executive and legislative branches.

    McCaul is motivated by his oath to defend the Constitution, and the Constitution confirms his action.

    Instead, your question concerning criminality should be directed at the National Counterterrorism Center, which offered classified intelligence corroborating what ought to be obvious to everyone, but strangely isn't!

  5. Our local elected officials think they can solve a global geopolitical problem. Meanwhile, they are incapable of replacing the Ferry Street Bridge. Dream on.

  6. How about a Common Council resolution asserting that ISIL is bad, that cancer should be cured, and puppies are cute?