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Author Topic: Obama defies Congress with ‘recess’ picks
Greg Davidson
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Jwatts, I think that "A surge of Santorum (eww!)'" is disgusting, and the entire attack on a Republican based on his name is stupid and childish.

Your unwillingness to address a simple, direct, and relevant question regarding your argument indicates weakness, not strength. My challenge did not even include any derogatory terms for those who might disagree, it just focused on you clarifying your argument. Why do you post here if you are unwilling to address hard questions?

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
Jwatts, I think that "A surge of Santorum (eww!)'" is disgusting, and the entire attack on a Republican based on his name is stupid and childish.

Good of you to say so.

quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
Your unwillingness to address a simple, direct, and relevant question regarding your argument indicates weakness, not strength. My challenge did not even include any derogatory terms for those who might disagree, it just focused on you clarifying your argument. Why do you post here if you are unwilling to address hard questions?

I did answer your question. I'm not sure why you keep saying I didn't.

You asked this:

quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
JWatts, do you believe that the hypocrisy that you allege to have occurred in this situation is morally worse than the actions of the Republicans that the recess appointment addressed? If so, why? If not, why are you harping on a lesser evil that is occurring in response to a greater one?

I responded with this:
quote:

I believe that the hypocritical actions that President Obama took will make the situation much worse not better.

What the Republican's were doing was wrong, but they were following the precedent laid down by the Democrats 4 years ago.

Obama should have either followed Bush's lead and negotiated a solution with Congress or initiated a court challenge to the pro forma Senate sessions.

That's an answer.
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AI Wessex
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"Latest rumor going around is that Nixon was gay."

It was a joke going around the internet, not a serious claim, and I brought to the forum in that light. The whole Santorum thread is a joke.

"The evidence for it is, well, evidence isn't all that meaningful these days."

That was the tie-in to current context, given the charges that are being made about all the candidates by each other, not to mention all the stupid claims that have been made against Obama.

But, let's be clear. I find Santorum's positions on a host of issues to be absurd, gay marriage and homosexuality being just one of them. FWIW, he said today in NH that gays don't get to serve in the military because that's a privilege that not all Americans are entitled to. You want to defend him on that? It's just my personal opinion that he holds bizarre views on lots of issues, and it's also the opinion of a lot of people across the country.

"But I make a fairly reasoned argument that Obama's actions were probably right, but still hypocritical and none of you can tolerate it."

Take this in the best possible way. You are being challenged because you are generally one of the more articulate and responsible right-side posters here. I wax silly and serious according to the topic and the poster. I haven't gone after you in any kind of personal way, but I am challenging you (as are others) to back up your claim with which you started this thread.

[ January 06, 2012, 06:46 PM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
Take this in the best possible way. You are being challenged because you are generally one of the more articulate and responsible right-side posters here. I wax silly and serious according to the topic and the poster. I haven't gone after you in any kind of personal way, but I am challenging you (as are others) to back up your claim, with which you started this thread.

And that's perfectly fair. I'm willing to accept that the premise is weak since it is at heart an inductive proof.

But it was unfair to me to say I was making a highly partisan charge just for making an argument that the President's actions were hypocritical.

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AI Wessex
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Here's what I can find to back up your position, and I find it fairly weak for several reasons:
quote:
In 2005, Obama Called Recess Appointment “Wrong Thing To Do.” “It’s the wrong thing to do. John Bolton is the wrong person for the job,” said Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., a member of Foreign Relations Committee. “The president is entitled to take that action, but I don’t think it will serve American foreign policy well.” (Jennifer Loven, “Officials: White House To Bypass Congress For Bolton Nomination,” The Associated Press, 7/30/05)

Obama Called Recess Appointee “Damaged Goods,” Claimed Appointee Would “Have Less Credibility.” “‘To some degree, he’s damaged goods,’ Obama said of Bolton. “Not in the history of United Nations representatives have we ever had a recess appointment, somebody who couldn’t get through a nomination in the Senate. And I think that that means that we will have less credibility and ironically be less equipped to reform the United Nations in the way that it needs to be reformed …’” (Bernard Schoenburg, “Bush Sends Bolton To U.N.; Durbin, Obama Criticize Move,” The State Journal-Register, 8/2/05)

1. Note that he's talking about Bolton's appointment to be our country's ambassador to the UN. Frankly, he's right. Bolton did not have the full backing of our country's elected Congress, and he in fact was perceived by other countries as representing only one partisan faction within our political framework.

2. He's not saying that recess appointments in general are wrong, but that this specific one is. He gives reasons for that that you can disagree with if you choose, but nowhere in there does he say what you claim he did.

Elsewhere Biden is chided for having said in 2002 that recess appointments risk intruding one-sided politics into the appointment process. That's also true, but note that he did not condemn it, only cautioned against its overuse at a time that Bush was making such appointments at the same rate that Reagan did, which was the highest rate in US history. He was right, too.

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Greg Davidson
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quote:
JWatts, do you believe that the hypocrisy that you allege to have occurred in this situation is morally worse than the actions of the Republicans that the recess appointment addressed? If so, why? If not, why are you harping on a lesser evil that is occurring in response to a greater one?
I missed the part where you addressed the question, which was to state which behavior you believed was morally worse. If you believe it was Obama's, then I believe that you are wrong, and would like to see why you believe that your case is correct. If you believe that the morally worse behavior was that of the Republicans in Congress, I would like to understand the rationale for why you choose to ignore that and focus on the actions of Obama.
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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
I missed the part where you addressed the question, which was to state which behavior you believed was morally worse.

I've already answered the question(s) you put forth (plus many other questions from other posters), so before I answer another series of questions, how about you take a turn to answer three questions.


Which thread is morally worse, this thread or the Santorum thread? And Why? And if you think the Santorum thread is morally worse, I would like to understand the rationale for why you choose to ignore that and focus on the this thread?

[ January 06, 2012, 08:53 PM: Message edited by: JWatts ]

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TomDavidson
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This thread is worse. Because the original poster of this thread is only pretending to be offended (and threatened) by Obama's alleged hypocrisy and power grab, while the poster of the Santorum thread legitimately cares to insult and marginalize the senator. One is bombast, just smoke and mirrors; the other is honest hilarity.

[ January 06, 2012, 08:55 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
This thread is worse. Because the original poster of this thread is only pretending to be offended (and threatened) by Obama's alleged hypocrisy and power grab, while the poster of the Santorum thread legitimately cares to insult and marginalize the senator. One is bombast, just smoke and mirrors; the other is honest hilarity.

Blatant motive speculation and also untrue.
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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
Here's what I can find to back up your position, and I find it fairly weak for several reasons: ...

Al, I never contended that Obama doesn't have a right to perform a recess appointment.

I contend he's a hypocrite for tacitly (at a minimum) supporting it while he was a Senator and Democratic candidate for President and the Democratic Senate was blocking Bush's Recess Appointments. Now that he is President and the Republican's are using the same tactic on him, he ignores the rules of the Senate and performs a Recess Appointment.

[ January 06, 2012, 09:10 PM: Message edited by: JWatts ]

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TomDavidson
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quote:
Blatant motive speculation and also untrue.
Oh, pish. You may as well own it. At least cherry has fun with his stubbornly uninformed rants.
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AI Wessex
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"I contend he's a hypocrite for tacitly (at a minimum) supporting it while he was a Senator and Democratic candidate for President and the Democratic Senate was blocking Bush's Recess Appointments."

Only if blocking one recess appointment makes a lifetime commitment to never make one, and only if all recess appointments are of equal weight and value. I would contend that blocking Bolton's appointment was within the purview of the Senate and making the recess appointment was in fact the wrong thing to do. In Obama's case, he had a law authorizing the appointment which the so-called loyal opposition sought to undermine. They did that despite themselves overall approving of the candidate. I think Obama did the right thing, even if in some abstract way you can find a hint of something reprehensible about it.

Besides your original assertion that it was hypocrisy on his part has no factual basis, so it's just sour grapes and grumpiness on your part to complain about it badly enough to start a whole thread so you can vent.

[ January 06, 2012, 09:42 PM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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Greg Davidson
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JWatts, in response to your question, I find it difficult to weigh the morality of two different threads which each contain multiple, opposing views. I can offer my views of the morality of the actions of specific individuals based on their comments in each thread (with the caveat that on a relative basis, there is much less moral significance to comments made on an Ornery thread than there is in actions that shape our national government).

I believe that your actions in this thread are morally worse than those of TheRallanator in giving the ugly name to the Santorum thread - in the latter case, it is a single (very ugly) pejorative reference to someone he disagrees with. In comparing pejorative references, it is much uglier than the pejorative reference you had in one of your comments, and so if that were the only moral content in your postings, the other would be morally worse. However, you go on to make an argument that appears to be insincere (due to your non-responsive to my direct question, I can't tell) because you appear to agree that the actions of the Republicans in Congress are worse than the response of Obama, but you continue to focus on the latter. And unlike your questions above, which link two very different topics only having Ornery as a common element, the actions of the Republicans and Obama regarding the recess appointment are directly linked.

To sum up, your actions in this thread are worse for the reason I provided above, and thus your third question is moot.

Now will you answer the same questions regarding your own actions?

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
Besides your original assertion that it was hypocrisy on his part has no factual basis,

It most certainly does have a factual basis. It's not a deductive proof, but that doesn't mean there is no factual basis. Criminal's get convicted routinely based on circumstantial evidence. All I'm doing is leveling a charge of hypocrisy, which is obviously a fairly trivial charge. This is the political equivalent to getting a speeding ticket.
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JWatts
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GregD, so in your world view, TheRallanator starting a thread, who's sole purpose is to defame and lob childish names at a Republican candidate is morally better than a reasoned thread to level a minor charge of hypocrisy at the President of the US?

Take a moment and think about that. Have you ever wondered why political discourse in this country is at a fairly low level? Perhaps, it's because it's become ok to call the other side childish names, but it's not ok to address the serious faults in your own side. (And that comment goes both ways. The right is just as guilty as the left is. Though it wouldn't surprise me to see someone loft the silly 'false equivalency' refrain.)

quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
However, you go on to make an argument that appears to be insincere

Again, blatant motive speculation! I thought that was supposed to be against the rules on this forum. Yet this is at least the 2nd time in this thread it's been used against me. Perhaps because the other side has a weaker argument than they would like to contend that they do? If you can't directly refute the argument you try and impugn the motives of the arguer.


quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
JWatts, do you believe that the hypocrisy that you allege to have occurred in this situation is morally worse than the actions of the Republicans that the recess appointment addressed? If so, why? If not, why are you harping on a lesser evil that is occurring in response to a greater one?

Now will you answer the same questions regarding your own actions?

Ok, let's start off with an analogy:
Let's say we have two gangs. We'll call one gang the Reds and the other the Blues.

Now let's say the Reds Kill a member of the Blues.
Then say a couple year's later the Blues kill a member of the Reds.
Then directly after this, the Red Leader decides to send a message to the Blues. He Blows up Red headquarters, but he does it at night while nobody is there.

Now, let's apply your questions to the analogy.
"JWatts, do you believe that the hypocrisy that you allege to have occurred in this situation is morally worse than the actions of the Republicans that the recess appointment addressed?"

So do I believe that the Red Leader blowing up the Blue headquarters is morally worse than the Blues killing a member of the Red. Well, without any context, killing is worse than blowing up a building, so clearly the Blues action is worse.

However, when you look at the context, it's pretty clear that the Blues were responding in kind to the previous actions of the Reds. Therefore when the Red Leader takes his response after the tit for tat previous history, it's clear that the Red Leader was escalating the situation.

So, my answer is that Obama's actions were worse. President Bush acted to defuse the situation by agreeing to a compromise with the Democratic congress and to not attempt anymore Recess appointments. President Obama decided to escalate the situation. He made the situation worse than it was.

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D.W.
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The best way to stop the executive branch from grabbing more power is to do your damn job regardless of what party you belong to. Obstructionism is not a trait the public admires. Decisiveness is. Questions of hypocrisy are of little consequence with that political reality looming over it.

There is something primal in us that delights in seeing a bully smacked down. Even if we still don’t approve of aggression and revenge in principle. Ballance of power changes all the time. People rarely do.

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
There is something primal in us that delights in seeing a bully smacked down.

True, indeed I think many conservatives will believe this action of Obama's is the classic move of a bully, utilizing Force majeure when compromise failed him.
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Pyrtolin
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AT least they'll use Rovian tactics to sell that concept to deflect from the fact that they were doing the bullying and this was just their target finally standing up to them on it.
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Grant
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quote:
Originally posted by JWatts:
this action of Obama's is the classic move of a bully, utilizing Force majeure when compromise failed him.

See, if the President COULD use the force, we wouldn't have this problem.

"Speaker Boehner, this IS the director of the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau you are looking for."


PS: LSU better shape up cause I don't want to hear all the merde from Bama fans for the next 12 months.

PPS: Why in the holy monster's name does wikipedia have a link to "South Park" article under the "Profanity" article? They SHOULD have a link to the "Deadwood" article. Now that was a show with Shakesperean potty mouth.

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Greg Davidson
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(1) thank you for providing an answer my question - you think that Obama's action is worse because it represents an escalation. I disagree, in part because I take into account the ends and effects of the actions of each side, but I appreciate you laying out your thinking.
(2) I don't know why The Rallinator started the thread with the disgusting name (you assert that: "TheRallanator starting a thread, who's sole purpose is to defame and lob childish names at a Republican candidate"). What he did was put up one post where he used a very disgusting pejorative term for someone he disagreed with. I dislike use of pejorative terms, whether they are disgusting or merely annoying (for example, your use of the phrase "lefties") earlier in this thread. I believe that it is more respectful to refer to people the way that they prefer to be referred to. His disgusting one is worse than your mild one, I dislike both (his much more), but both are a lesser moral issue more akin to manners.
(3) The purpose of Ornery is informed and rational discussion (see Ornery Rules, particularly "we welcome serious discussion about events, ideas, leaders, candidates, parties, principles, governments, religions, philosophies, and programs"). To me, "serious" means that we stand behind our opinions (or acknowledge that they change), we explain our logic, and we acknowledge when we have been caught in an error, logical contradiction, or mis-statement.
(4) You have a point about motive speculation (in particular, the comment "the original poster of this thread is only pretending to be offended (and threatened) by Obama's alleged hypocrisy"). I made a comment that was close the borderline, but I don't consider it "blatant motive speculation" because I am not talking about you or your motives, I am describing an argument that you make, and as is clear from the context that you edited out of your quote, I believed that your argument was flawed (I used the word "insincere" which carries with it connotations of a personal nature which I did not intend) based on your repeated non-response to a fundamental question, and then I laid out the conflict that appeared to be in your thinking

quote:
you go on to make an argument that appears to be insincere (due to your non-responsive to my direct question, I can't tell) because you appear to agree that the actions of the Republicans in Congress are worse than the response of Obama, but you continue to focus on the latter
I apologize for the word choice, but not for the argument that I was making at that time
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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
(1) thank you for providing an answer my question - you think that Obama's action is worse because it represents an escalation. I disagree, in part because I take into account the ends and effects of the actions of each side, but I appreciate you laying out your thinking.

I find this premise questionable, because you rarely, if ever, seem to express any concern to the 'ends and effects' unless the result is unfavorable Democrats. I see no record that you ever protested the Democrats blocking President Bush's recess appointments, nor indeed do I see any record of any but the most mildest criticisms of Democrats or of you ever giving any but a left handed praise to a Republican. (Actually, I don't recall you ever criticizing Democrats at all, but I haven't read every post you made).

The Obama administration has done plenty of questionably unethical acts and yet you have not once criticized it. Indeed you have heaped lavish praise on Obama. So your argument at this time that you are concerned with the 'ends and effects' of the actions of each side seems shallow and partisan.


quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
(2) I don't know why The Rallinator started the thread with the disgusting name (you assert that: "TheRallanator starting a thread, who's sole purpose is to defame and lob childish names at a Republican candidate"). What he did was put up one post where he used a very disgusting pejorative term for someone he disagreed with.

No, that's not just what he did. The entire thread is full of childish name calling of Republican's. Including further posts by Rallanator in the same vein. If I had started a similar thread on this board about Obama, Lefties would have gone ballistic. Indeed, I'm tempted to do it just for comparison purposes. But later when this comment isn't so fresh. [Wink]

quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
(3) The purpose of Ornery is informed and rational discussion (see Ornery Rules, particularly "we welcome serious discussion about events, ideas, leaders, candidates, parties, principles, governments, religions, philosophies, and programs"). To me, "serious" means that we stand behind our opinions (or acknowledge that they change), we explain our logic, and we acknowledge when we have been caught in an error, logical contradiction, or mis-statement.

Rational discussion requires treating everyone fairly and in a consistent manner. And yet you continuously attempt to hold me to a higher standard than any Leftie poster. You've attacked this thread as somehow immoral and yet it was trivial for me to point out a Republican bashing thread (with no attempt at reasonable debate) that was far worse. Indeed, I could have probably found half a dozen such threads, but I just chose the most obvious one from the first page.

I have on numerous occasions admitted to being wrong. Please, point out the thread where you admitted you were wrong, just so I feel that your standard is being applied fairly and in a consistent manner. And no, apologizing for word choice, but not the argument behind it is not an admission that you were wrong. [Wink]

quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
(4) You have a point about motive speculation (in particular, the comment "the original poster of this thread is only pretending to be offended (and threatened) by Obama's alleged hypocrisy"). I made a comment that was close the borderline, but I don't consider it "blatant motive speculation" because I am not talking about you or your motives, I am describing an argument that you make, and as is clear from the context that you edited out of your quote, I believed that your argument was flawed ... I apologize for the word choice, but not for the argument that I was making at that time

Is that an admission that you were wrong? No, not really. But I accept your clarification that it was not meant to be motive speculation.

[ January 10, 2012, 11:18 AM: Message edited by: JWatts ]

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TomDavidson
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quote:
I find this premise questionable, because you rarely, if ever, seem to express any concern to the 'ends and effects' unless the result is unfavorable Democrats.
Hey, Pot, looks like you know Kettle already. [Smile]
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D.W.
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You’re spot on JWatts. Everyone sees themselves in the role of the victim when things aren’t going their way. I at first admired Obama for what was in my opinion a willingness to compromise. Now several years down the road I have reframed that trait as naiveté.
quote:
The Obama administration has done plenty of questionably unethical acts and yet you have not once criticized it. Indeed you have heaped lavish praise on Obama. So your argument at this time that you are concerned with the 'ends and effects' of the actions of each side seems shallow and partisan.
JWatts, I think a more fair measure of someone would be if they defends those questionably unethical acts, as opposed to just not mentioning them. The simple fact is that unless you yourself are in charge, and probably not even then, you can never have everything you want in a leader. All you can do is take the bad with the good and vote for and support the leader you feel has the least bad and the most good.

I don’t think you, or your post is immoral for what it’s worth. The action of Obama was out of line with the party’s contention that recess appointments are the wrong way to do business. I expect, but don’t know, that they still believe this to be the case. Unless/until the rules are changed however they must either use the tools available to them or accept political defeat. The administration was faced with the choice to either fight dirty or tuck tail and run.

Either choice was a victory for the republican party. That was the whole point of the stalemate. The interesting questions are did they cause the president to make a legal misstep? Can the republican party leverage this reaction by the president to motivate their base? Is this reaction by the president likely seen by democratic voters as the president growing a spine or sinking to the level of the opposition? Who benefits from this theater? I for one don’t give a **** if someone thinks the president is a hypocrite or not and care even less if the use of the word is proper.

I do think it was trivial for you to point out that particular bashing thread, because the thread itself was juvenile and not worthy of notice in the first place. Or at least the title was enough to dissuade my interest. If you care to make an equivalent thread then I will ignore that one as well. Which would be more fair and consistent behavior from this “leftie poster”. I’ll leave the ballistics to someone else. [Smile]

[ January 10, 2012, 12:51 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
You’re spot on JWatts.

Thank you

quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
Watts, I think a more fair measure of someone would be if they defends those questionably unethical acts, as opposed to just not mentioning them. ...
I don’t think you, or your post is immoral for what it’s worth. The action of Obama was out of line with the party’s contention that recess appointments are the wrong way to do business. I expect, but don’t know, that they still believe this to be the case.

And indeed, I was very qualified in my original post. There were substantive reasons for President Obama's actions and I won't pretend they weren't reasonable, just because he's not 'on my side'. (Though of course, as President of the US he's always at root 'on my team'. He's just Offense and I'm on the Defense [Wink] )


quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
Unless/until the rules are changed however they must either use the tools available to them or accept political defeat. The administration was faced with the choice to either fight dirty or tuck tail and run.

That's not the complete story. Obama could have launched a court challenge. But of course that wouldn't be nearly as effective as 'red meat' and this is an election year. His administration was looking for an immediate 'in your face move' to rally the base.

quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
I do think it was trivial for you to point out that particular bashing thread, because the thread itself was juvenile and not worthy of notice in the first place.

I don't think it was trivial in context. Greg D was attacking my post on moral grounds. I wasn't countering a substantive argument at that point. In that vein, I needed to pick an obvious immoral stance from his 'side' that he was ignoring to point out the double standard he was attempting to apply.

[ January 10, 2012, 01:25 PM: Message edited by: JWatts ]

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D.W.
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You were questioning the character of Obama. His 'side' was resorting to childish name calling. Equating the two was in itself a jab on your part. A deserved one against the community as a whole and that poster in particular but trivial in regards to this discussion.

One classless post does not set the bar for all posters of a particular political party. You need look no further than the weekly movie theater listings to see that type of humor isn't going away any time soon.

You can choose to play in the deep end of the pool or the shallow end. The expectations for each group is different. There IS a double standared. Be proud you are being held to the more restrictive standard or go get fit for some water wings and nose plugs.

[ January 10, 2012, 01:52 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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JWatts
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
You can choose to play in the deep end of the pool or the shallow end. The expectations for each group is different. There IS a double standared. Be proud you are being held to the more restrictive standard or go get fit for some water wings and nose plugs.

[Big Grin]
OK, I concede that point. I'll go get my dive suit on. I'm a woose so it's a thick one, I expect I'll need it. [Razz]

[ January 10, 2012, 02:14 PM: Message edited by: JWatts ]

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
That's not the complete story. Obama could have launched a court challenge. But of course that wouldn't be nearly as effective as 'red meat' and this is an election year. His administration was looking for an immediate 'in your face move' to rally the base.
Or- going through the courts would have left economically critical posts unfilled for even longer where the luxury of waiting simply didn't exist anymore. If he was just going for red meat, you'd think he'd have made a substantial number of appointments across the board, since many federal executive and judicial offices are current suffering from the current logjam in appointments.
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Greg Davidson
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Sorry for the gap in time - was on travel and just got back from East Coast.

Assessment of morality was based on approach to argumentation, which is a valid concern even if you disagree with my view of the facts.

I have criticized Obama - not just for easy centrism critique (stimulus too small, no legal accountability for those who committed war crimes), but also for detention of American citizens without a warrant.

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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
So the president does indeed have the power to adjourn Congress. He does not have the power to declare it "in recess" - as in, trying to make recess appointments. It is unconstitutional for the President to declare Congress in recess.
Irrelevant, as precedent for use recess appointment power allows it to apply in to both intersession and intrasession appointments..
You are exactly wrong.

quote:


President Barack Obama violated the Constitution when he bypassed the Senate to fill vacancies on a labor relations panel, a federal appeals court panel ruled Friday.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit said that Obama did not have the power to make three recess appointments last year to the National Labor Relations Board.

....


The unanimous decision is an embarrassing setback for the president, who made the appointments after Senate Republicans spent months blocking his choices for an agency they contended was biased in favor of unions.

Unanimous decision.

There's more:

quote:


Not only did Obama unconstitutionally arrogate to himself the ability to determine when the Senate is in session, the court now holds that the appointment power exists only in the formal Recess between sessions...

....the court also ruled that the vacancies had to arise during The Recess as well (page 23):

Barry will appeal but a unanimous decision, it looks bad for him.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by G3:
quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
So the president does indeed have the power to adjourn Congress. He does not have the power to declare it "in recess" - as in, trying to make recess appointments. It is unconstitutional for the President to declare Congress in recess.
Irrelevant, as precedent for use recess appointment power allows it to apply in to both intersession and intrasession appointments..
You are exactly wrong.


The fact that a silge court has ruled against established precedent does not make the statement that prior precedent has allowed for both types of appointment to be wrong., it just means that that court has decided to override said precedent.

[ January 30, 2013, 08:06 AM: Message edited by: Pyrtolin ]

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Not only did Obama unconstitutionally arrogate to himself the ability to determine when the Senate is in session, the court now holds that the appointment power exists only in the formal Recess between sessions...

....the court also ruled that the vacancies had to arise during The Recess as well (page 23):

That's an impressive level of legislating from the bench that actively flies in the face of decades worth of established use of the power.
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hobsen
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From the little I have read, Obama had longstanding precedent to justify his action. But this court chose to rule it was improper. That is any court's prerogative, but the only opinion that counts in the end is one issued by the Supreme Court. Perhaps this question will be appealed there, and more precise guidelines will result. It is clear a President has the power to make recess appointments, but the precise circumstances in which it is permissible have not yet been spelled out in detail, so it is not surprising opinions differ.
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Wayward Son
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Pyrtolin is absolutely correct that the President has precident in his recess appointments.

According to the Congressional Research Service, possibly hundreds of previous recess appointments would have been unlawful if this ruling was in effect.

quote:
...[T]he scope of the appeal court decision was far broader than the particular circumstances of the NLRB appointments. The three-judge panel, each nominated by Republican presidents, re-examined the origins of the constitutional recess appointment power and concluded that the president has the power to make recess appointments only in one narrow circumstance: when the Senate is in recess between sessions of Congress and only if the vacancy arose during that recess.

The Congressional Research Service found a total of 329 intrasession recess appointments — appointments that occurred when the Senate adjourned in the middle of a session — since 1981. By the terms of Noel Canning v. NLRB, all of those appointments would have been invalid.

There were another 323 so-called intersession recess appointments — appointments that occurred between Senate sessions — but the CRS was unable to determine how many of those would also have run afoul of the circuit court’s opinion because it lacked sufficient data to determine whether those vacancies arose during the same recess.

I would be very suprised if the Supreme Court decided that a procedure extant for over 30 years and used for well over 300 appointments was suddenly declared unconstitutional.

Which doesn't mean it can't happen. I would just find it very suprising. [Smile]

[ February 06, 2013, 11:54 AM: Message edited by: Wayward Son ]

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G3
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Precedent is not law - saying we've always done it that way does not necessarily make it legal. There was significant gray area to operate in here and the executive has never sought to directly challenge the legislative branch like this before.

The ruling makes the same point I did:
quote:
The appointment may be made in “the Recess,” but it ends at the end of the next “Session.” The natural interpretation of the Clause is that the Constitution is noting a difference between “the Recess” and the “Session.” Either the Senate is in session, or it is in the recess. If it has broken for three days within an ongoing session, it is not in “the Recess.”
Barry tried to expand his power and ended up picking a fight that looks very much like he could lose and that may clearly define the recess appointment process.
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Wayward Son
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quote:
There was significant gray area to operate in here and the executive has never sought to directly challenge the legislative branch like this before.
OTOH, if the legislaive branch had done its job instead of playing games with the defintion of "in session," Obama wouldn't have had to challenge them. [Smile] If they had simply voted on the appointments during the session instead of tabling it indefinitely and pretending to be "in session," there would have been no reason for a recess appointment. Congress was making a power-grab, too.

And while precident is not law, it is used to determine law. If no one had a problem with the 329+ other appointments, the Supreme Court may decide that this is within the bounds of the law, too.

And if the Supreme Court does rule with the Appeals Court, they will still probably bite the Republicans in the behind, too, since they will have to rule what constitutes a "recess" and a "session." And I very much doubt they will leave that up to Congress, because that will give Congress almost carte blanche power in the future to pull stuff like this again.

[ February 06, 2013, 01:20 PM: Message edited by: Wayward Son ]

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Seriati
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If the court rules other than it did, it essentially ends the advise and consent clause as it cedes the power to determine if the Senate is in recess to the executive branch (kind of like when the Emperor permantly disbanded the Senate after completion of the Death Star). I am not sure how anyone could think the President should have a greater right to determine if the Senate is in session than the Senate?

It's interesting to me, that the Senate's gavelling in actual restored the historical intent behind the provision. The provision was to allow for the continuing operation of the government at a time when the Senate would be in extended recess and not easy to recall. That's not a circumstance that even exists in our modern world. The recess appointment power had basically morphed from an emergency procedure to and end run procedure. And the Senate's gavelling in, put it back to being an emergency procedure.

End of day, why would you want an Executive to have this power? Unless you think the Senate should be out of the process entirely.

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Wayward Son
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The problem is that Congress is extending its power with this maneuver.

Congress has the power to accept or reject the President's nominee. But by doing neither, it is trying to prevent the establishment of the department the nominee is for. Something that Congress does not have the legal right to do.

So either the President gets more power or Congress gets more power--or the Supreme Court figures out how to get Congress to do its job.

It will be interesting, all right. [Smile]

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
I am not sure how anyone could think the President should have a greater right to determine if the Senate is in session than the Senate?
The framers disagree with you, since they explicitly gave the President the power to end a session and to call session.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by G3:
Precedent is not law - saying we've always done it that way does not necessarily make it legal.


It makes it legal until explicitly prohibited ruled otherwise. Previous courts have upheld such appointments, so the current ruling represents a strong shift in what what previously considered legal.

quote:
There was significant gray area to operate in here and the executive has never sought to directly challenge the legislative branch like this before.

That's flat out false. You can go back at least as far as Teddy Roosevelt who did exactly the same thing for precedent here.

quote:
Barry tried to expand his power and ended up picking a fight that looks very much like he could lose and that may clearly define the recess appointment process.
Precedent for this goes back to Teddy Roosevelt; a power that's been considered acceptable for over 100 years can't be considered an attempt at expansion. (Espcailly when the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court explicitly told him to make use of his recess appointment power)
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G3
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quote:


A third federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that President Obama violated the Constitution last year when he made recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, adding more weight to the case as it goes before the Supreme Court in the justices’ next session.

The Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 decision, said that the president can only make recess appointments after Congress has adjourned “sine die,” which in modern times has meant when it breaks at the end of each year.


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