Donald Trump should be commended for firing National Security Adviser Micheal Flynn after it was revealed that he had improper contact with Russian officials and misled Vice President Pence about the nature of his dealings with Russian officials. Given Flynn’s forced resignation comes only weeks into his and Mr Trump’s tenure, the affair emboldens Trump critics and, most likely, undercuts confidence in the Trump Administration. On the other hand, the willingness to take action against discredited public officials like Flynn, who need removed from government, is very much needed. The willingness to fix a problem or a mistake, instead of burying it, is in short supply when it comes to politics.
Republican should also be commended for standing against Andrew Puzdera as a thoroughly unfit nominee for Labor Secretary. Mr. Puzdera’s failings as an employer and head of an industry that survives by suppressing the cost of labor makes him more qualified to act as the anti-Labor Secretary than an the advocate for labor. When it came to confirming Secretary of Education Betsy Devos, Republicans chose to vote with the head of their political party and against Democrats when they needed to vote based on the quantification and personal merits of the nominee. Devos is a wealthy political hobbyist who has a superficial understanding of education and lacks the insights needed to contribute anything constructive to education policy. In a polarized political environment, it is heartening to see Republicans making decisions based on substance and not political calculations.
China’s infamous air pollution has had such an averse impact on residents living near industrial centers that an increasing number of lawyers are willing to risk their careers and freedom to sue the Chinese government for failing to take action. The condition of China’s air quality has degenerated so much for so long that clean air is increasingly seen as a major human rights issue in china. In the United States, regulations and the enforcement of those regulations helped save the residents of cities like San Francisco from dirty air. Health and environmental advocates, including States, have even successful used America’s legal system to compel unwilling political leadership to regulate the pollution of industries economically compelled to resist regulation, which was the case under the George W. Bush Administration. China is, however, not the United States. On the other hand, America faces threats that are making the US more like China.
China has a legal system, but it is not a system that promotes the rule of law, i.e. provide equal protection for all. The legal system in China is geared toward ensuring stability and the rule of the Communist Party. Unlike China, the US has, for example, an independent judiciary that has the power to overrule the political leadership. The US also has a Constitution that sets limits on the power of government to act, whether it is acting with or against the will of the People. The legal system in China does not constraint government, but it does constraint the behavior of citizens to suppress dissent. The Chinese legal system is a series of technical hurdle that, at best, Party officials have to navigate in order to give the appearance of justice and establish the legitimacy of government oppressive, which demonstrates why threats to the US judiciary independence represent a real problem.
The United States is trapped in a vicious cycle of extreme partisan polarization and political dysfunction. Today, Donald Trump is the President and Republicans control Congress. They are utilizing every power of the Executive Branch, including Executive Orders, to pursue an agenda that appeases their influential members, whether or not that agenda serves the broader interests of all Americans. Democrats, as the current Congressional minority, are using every tactic possible to derail the policies of the Trump Administration. Under the Obama Administration, the situation was inverted. Under the next President, the same Executive overreach and Congressional obstructionism will likely persist. Only when the two sides recognize the need to address their mutual interests as Americans and seek mutually acceptable solutions will this cycle be broken.
The problem is that Republicans seek nothing less than Republican-favored policies and Democrats seek nothing less than Democrat-favored policies. Neither side wants public policy solutions that actually solve problems by addressing the diverging interests of all Americans, i.e. solve every aspect of the problem. Sometimes this means adopting Republican-favored policies and sometimes it means adopting Democrat-favored policies. In today’s dysfunction, however, Republican-favored policies are unacceptable to Democrats, because they are Republican-favored policies, and Democrat-favored policies are unacceptable to Republicans, because they are Democrat-favored policies while there is no room for alternatives. This polarization is, however, a distraction from a much greater threat posed by those who use this dysfunction to seek power.
The professional media’s coverage of terrorist attacks has been called into question by US President Donald Trump as part of an effort to justify and deflect criticism away from his Executive Order banning travelers from seven predominately Muslim countries. Although traditional sources of news have serious issues, which demonstrated by Fake News, and often fail to serve their communities in a constructive manner, they tend to be particularly attentive when it comes to covering violent crime, especially terrorism. Coverage of these events, after all, tends to result in higher ratings and profits. If anything, factors like search engine results and viewer apathy account for a lack of attention to these news story. Trump’s list of” 78 under-reported terrorist attacks offered professional media outlets an opportunity to quickly disarm the President’s attacks, but he has demonstrated a need to discuss how terrorism is defined.
Recognizing that terrorism is a form of violent crime reminds the world that the outcome of murder is the same no matter the motivation. Understanding why perpetrators of violent crimes ultimately choose to engage in their attacks can help people cope with the consequences of violence and help authorities decrypt the patterns they need to prevent future violent crimes. Understanding why terrorism exists begins with defining what qualifies as terrorism. Politicians often skirt around the distinction, because they need to leave room to protect rebellious groups across the world that espouse useful ideologies, yet engage in questionable activities. Unfortunately, terrorists use the loose definition of terrorism to push the perception that their cause is one of freedom fighters, which helps them gain support for their activities and recruit reluctant individuals into their groups.
The Trump Administration, thanks to its travel ban targeting seven predominately Muslim countries, is already facing its first major legal challenge. If this reaction to one of Trump’s first Executive Orders is an indication of things to come, President Donald Trump is going to find himself at odds with the Judicial Branch more often than not. Recognizing Trump’s reaction to Federal Judge James L. Robart’s ruling, which suspended Trump’s ban, was to lash out against the Seattle Judge, as well as his racially-charged personal attacks on the Judge overseeing a Lawsuit against his defunct Trump University, there is a very real concern that President Trump may decide to circumvent the authority of the Judicial Branch. As such, it is necessary to remind ourselves why there is a need for a Judicial Branch and why its rulings must be respected.
In the beginning of the United States, America’s Forefathers struggled to create a balanced government. Their solution was to set limits on the Legislative Process and the power of the Executive Branch. The need for balanced government is why the Constitution places limits on what laws Legislators can enact. Although Congress can craft and adopt whatever bills its members agree to embrace and the President can sign into law any piece of legislation he likes, the Courts have the responsibility to review and reject any law that violates the tenets of the US Constitution. As judicial supremacy , i.e. the power to override the other two branches of government, was never explicitly guaranteed by the US Constitution, there is always a threat that the Executive Branch might disregard the decisions of the Courts.
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