Sunday, July 31, 2011

Faith in government

Dave Weigel:

What does it mean that Democrats want to believe [the 14th amendment or platinum coin loophole], or that articles about double-secret debt solution loopholes are so popular? It's sort of ominous. Not making a one-to-one comparison here, but it puts me in mind of the Tea Party-inspired Republican efforts of 2009-today to prove that this or that program they don't like can be magicked out of existence by putting the Consitution in a black hat and reading it with special glasses. The collapse of faith and trust in the way government works is mutating with every crisis, every bit showdown on a bill.

Weigel said "mutating." I might have said "collapsing faster than Tim Pawlenty's presidential hopes." But it's a great point regardless. It's also another sign of congress' complete inability to face the challenges that the country faces. As congress turns into more and more of a joke and continues to abdicate their responsibilities, the executive branch will continue to hoover up more power and responsibility.

As someone who does actually think separation of powers is a good thing, this is an unwelcome development.  But nothing can really be done to reverse this trend until congress gets its collective head out of its collective ass.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Gleaning insight from the fine print

From my renter's insurance policy, under "Losses not insured":

e. War, including any undeclared war, civil war, insurrection, rebellion, revolution, warlike act by a military force or military personnel, destruction or seizure or use for a military purpose, and including any consequence of any of these. Discharge of a nuclear weapon shall be deemed a warlike act even if accidental.

Contrast this with the War Powers Resolution:

(1) into hostilities or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances;
(2) into the territory, airspace or waters of a foreign nation, while equipped for combat, except for deployments which relate solely to supply, replacement, repair, or training of such forces; or
(3) in numbers which substantially enlarge United States Armed Forces equipped for combat already located in a foreign nation;

Hey, Obama administration, would my apartment still be insured if it were in Libya? I think congress could use some writing tips from State Farm Insurance.

(In unrelated news, this blog now has a mobile site. I guess I need to actually update this blog more often for it to be relevant.)