To The Daily Sun,
Bravo President Obama — for issuing an executive order on immigration after years of obstructionism by the Congress. The House has had over 500 days to take a vote on the bipartisan immigration reform bill passed by the Senate — but Speaker Boehner won't allow a vote, though most reporters agree the House would have passed the Senate bill, making the president's executive order unnecessary. And the House could still pass this Senate bill, which would supersede the president's executive order.
Now the Republicans seem to be throwing a tantrum, annoyed that they are unable to succeed at stalling any meaningful action on immigration reform.
As conservative legal scholar Eric Posner (University of Chicago) wrote in the New York Times on Nov. 18, the Constitution clearly gives the President "executive power" — which, as Posner wrote, "has always been understood to include the discretionary power to allocate resources among enforcement efforts."
While some on the right have been whining about the number of executive orders President Obama has issued, it might be useful to review the facts. The numbers are available to all on the Website of the American Presidency Project at the University of California, Santa Barbara (http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php ). Their chart (updated every month) lists the numbers of executive orders from Presidents Washington to Obama. On the chart are both the total number of orders issued and the average number per year in office. Looking at this latter number (updated through Oct. 20, 2014), President Obama has the lowest average of orders per year (33.57) since the first term of Grover Cleveland (1885-89), whose average orders per year was 28.25.
Looking at the total number of executive orders issued for some recent Presidents, Reagan issued 381, George W. Bush issued 291, and President Obama has so far issued 193.
Last Updated on Monday, 24 November 2014 10:27
To The Daily Sun,
After reading the front page (11/18/14) on the three men charged with shooting heroin, and seeing their age, I could only say, "You're old enough to know better." But they say opium addition is a dark cloud that will follow you the rest of your life.
I grew up in the late sixties, early seventies, when heroin was an epidemic. I lost a couple of friends to a heroin overdose. They way I would mourn their loss and serve as a constant reminder not to go down that road, was a song by the artist Neil Young. The last verse was, "I've seen the needle and the damage done, a little part of it in every one, but every junkie is like a setting sun."
God bless those who have broken the chains of heroin addiction, and God help those who have not.
Last Updated on Monday, 24 November 2014 10:19
To The Daily Sun,
On Dec. 8, a public input session will be held about the current challenges facing the Belknap Mill Society. Since the Society is a public, non-profit organization, perhaps it should be recommended that an independent audit of the organization's finances be made before any public hearing is held and that audit be made available to the general public. It is important to note that the members of the current board of trustees of the mill are all new, and the public needs to know exactly how the society got into its present-day financial difficulties.
The Save the Mill Society was formed during the turmoil of urban renewal. There were two mills in need of preservation: the Busiel Mill and the Belknap Mill. When attorney Arthur Nighswander bought and restored the Busiel, the Save the Mills Society was renamed the Belknap Mill Society, and its mission was to preserve and restore the Belknap Mill. Four local businessmen were the founders of both organizations. Peter Karagianis, Norman Weeks, Lawrence Baldi, and Richard Davis. They put their entire lives on the line to save those mills, and they were highly successful.
They did it before the field of historic preservation was in place. They did it before there were LCHIP grants for preservation. They had a tremendous passion for their mission, and they hit the ground running. It was hard, hard work, but they never once doubted that what they were doing was right, and that it needed to happen.
When these men were facing the restoration of the Belknap Mill, the mill was in far worse shape than it is today. The mill was unwanted by the city of Laconia, as well as a high percentage of the city's residents. One of them went as far as to set the mill on fire in order to rid the city of such an "eyesore." Fortunately, that fire was extinguished before it caused any damage.
Economic environments are often far from perfect when it comes to conducting historic preservation projects. That's where passion and creativity come into play. The Belknap Mill today is in need of repair, and some of the repairs are costly. That is what preservation is all about, and that is the job of the Belknap Mill Society. There are preservation grants available, such as LCHIP, which this year was funded with millions of dollars.
The Belknap Mill's future is not gloom and doom. There is a one-of-a-kind industrial museum housed within the mill, which includes a power system built in 1918 and a room filled with knitting machines that were made in Laconia. There are tenants that utilize the building on a daily basis and an award-winning school program that is held there on an annual basis. The mill is functioning, but it needs some preservation.
If the four men who saved the mill in the 1970s saw what the mill needed today, I can assure you that they would say, "Is that all?"
Last Updated on Monday, 24 November 2014 10:16
To The Daily Sun,
So what say all you right-wing conspiracy Obama haters?
(Last week an investigative report prepared by the House Intelligence Committee founds little to support questions raised about CIA actions on the ground in Benghazi, Libya, the night of a deadly 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound.)
Our president and his administration did not in fact lie to the American people as the talking heads on Fox News where most of you get your "facts" repeatedly told their viewers. The true patriotic Americans deserve an apology for all the damage you have caused to this great country and the memory of the brave men who gave their lives.
Last Updated on Monday, 24 November 2014 10:10
To The Daily Sun,
One hundred years of the liberal-progressive push to control our education is bearing fruit, rotten fruit. Common Core, the latest government intrusion into our children's education, has already become overripe and smells really bad. More parents and teachers are sifting through the bureaucratic language known as "corespeak" and have begun to understand that it is more about promoting "leftist" values than teaching the necessary information and skills that will allow them to succeed in an increasingly competitive and global world.
And now comes the Department of Education (please make it go away) and the Department of Justice, leaning on public schools to decline punishment for black students who display disruptive class behavior (racial quota limits for punishment - Sowell). Democrats want to ask questions and probe these students to find out why they are being disrespectful to teachers, including assaults on faculty. Of course, the implied if not announced narrative, is that the schools are either being too strict on these students or they are displaying "institutional racism". In the meantime, less and less learning will take place in the classroom.
Playing the favorite liberal games of "blaming authority figures" and "throwing down the race card" before having the facts (see Ferguson, Missouri) is the ideological and political-way liberal progressives choose to deal with serious, societal concerns. Portraying blacks as the victims and liberals as the rescuers is great for Democrats. But for black minorities, not so much (see Jason L. Riley's new book: "Please Stop Helping Us"). For whatever reason, they are loathe to address the real issues, which are the breakdown of the family unit and lack of school choice. It couldn't be the goal of preserving that cherished Democrat voting block could it? Boys with no fathers in the home are more likely to engage in bad behavior, numerous studies have shown. Common sense tell us that letting a child get away with bad behavior is an invitation to more anti-social behaviors later on.
Is it any wonder that the teacher turnover rate is so high? Check out the MetLife survey, Forbes.com report, a failed teacher story in Edutopia and Rita Kramer's book, "Ed School Follies", and you will find much of the teacher dissatisfaction is due to school principals and superintendents not giving them the support they need to survive in the "blackboard jungle".
Charlotte Iserbyt's book, "The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America", describes how the education establishment is deliberately seeking mediocre results. Edutopia reports that "every year U.S. schools hire more than 200,000 teachers for the first day of class and by summer, 22,000 have quit". Apparently, the money train pushes the educational establishment's "gravy train". As long as they have to educate many thousands of new teachers each year who will need books, classrooms and lots of instruction, then unending taxpayer funds will continue to flow, regardless of the negative outcomes for students.
Yet far too many teachers believe it is the educational establishment that has their back rather than parents and the community. Along with giving short-shrift to the importance of teaching the literary classics, it seems the "Stockholm Syndrome" concept is also not a part of the teacher's learning curve.
Bruce Deitrick Price believes, "the last thing the Education Establishment would want is a stable core of highly professional, experienced teachers".
Ben Shapiro notes, "the achievement gap will never be closed, so long as school districts across the country punish good students, reward bad ones and let political correctness trump educational necessity". The arrogance and paternalism that began with John Dewey and others continues to thrive (can you say Karl Marx?). The "teach less so no one suffers from low self-esteem" paradigm is progressing swimmingly well while our children drown in a scandalous ocean of academic fraud and failing scholastic achievement. After all, isn't education merely a conduit for more liberal, progressive, social schemes (hello Common Core)?
The GOP has a marvelous opportunity to overhaul an increasingly dysfunctional, educational system fueled by the progressive, government-controlled-learning establishment. Otherwise, teachers will continue to take it on the chin and our children will suffer from decreasing reading, writing, math, computing and comprehension skills and have a more difficult time being successful in the adult working environment. Yes Republicans, keep those big boy (and girl) pants on. You know, the ones you just put on to jump start our economy.
A hat tip to: Walter Williams, Thomas Sowell, Michael Savage, Roger Hedgecock, Ben Shapiro and Bruce Deitrick Price for much of the content in this letter.
Last Updated on Saturday, 22 November 2014 12:26