Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hey, Kids… will Social Securtity be there for you?

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 1933.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 1933. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Administration says yes…

… unless you're dumb enough to let Wall Street take it away.

Two articles on college "affordability" --- Worth the read

College (Photo credit: 401(K) 2013)


Washington is poised to repeat the tragic events of the late 1990s… fiddling as the Republic burns.

Republican Elephant & Democratic Donkey - 3D Icons
Republican Elephant & Democratic Donkey - 3D Icons (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)
Driving in this morning and listening to talk on the radio of impeaching the President took me back to Clinton's second administration.  Bubba was arrogant enough to get himself impeached over a blow job.  How a man of Clinton's intelligence and talents could have failed to see the potential disaster that oral sex in the Oval Office offered is beyond me.  Why a man of potential greatness, who gave the country a balanced budget, would trash his presidency for the sake of sex with a pudgy intern will remain a mystery to me.

The GOP, of course, deserves half the blame for the farcical impeachment proceedings that followed.  Seeking payback for Watergate and power at any price --- so long as it's paid by the Republic, not the Republicans --- they pursued Clinton as far as the legal machinery allowed.  And who were the real losers?  All Americans.

Today Washington is positioning itself for a reprise.  The Tealiban minority in Congress is sufficient to paralyze the Republican majority of the House, which in turn can block any meaningful Congressional action on almost everything.  Across the mall, an increasingly frustrated President has resorted to rule by executive orders, opening himself up to charges of usurpation of power.

The GOP has taken "sore loser" to new lengths.  Unable to block Obamacare in Congress or the Supreme, the "Grand Old Party" has worked to undermine its implementation at every turn.  Unable to repeal every statute that protects average Americans from exploitation by the one percent, Republican Senators have resorted to blocking the appointments of Democratic judges, labor board members, and other officials who might enforce such statutes.

Obama has reacted by issuing executive orders and making recess appointments.  The five conservative Supreme Court Justices, covering the GOP's back, have reversed some of those Presidential proclamations, most recently declaring his NLRB recess appointments null and void.

Meanwhile, we see the bizarre phenomenon of Central America's youth marching in a sort of Children's Crusade to our southern borders.  Why now?  Did the 2008 human trafficking law under which they ostensibly hope to achieve asylum suddenly become common knowledge in the Banana Republics?  I have yet to hear a credible explanation of what precisely is the immediate catalyst to this unprecedented migration.  What does strike me is that it plays into the hands of the President, who is also frustrated that he cannot achieve any sort of immigration "reform" on Capital Hill.

Here I must side with the Republicans who are insisting that Obama enforce US law.  The 1986 omnibus immigration "reform" act was a failure because it gave amnesty to illegals already in the US while utterly failing to prevent future illegal immigration.  Opponents of amnesty now are fully justified in their skepticism about any new program that would legitimize the estimated 11 million who have crept in tot he country since 1986, while yet again making potentially empty promises of border security.

And so Obama's Dream Act became his dream order.  And we see tens of thousands of adolescent invaders being dispersed around the country while their hearings may remain pending until they are possibly irrelevant.  This non-solution to what may well be a fabricated crisis can only deepen our skepticism about any amnesty act that might be put forward in the future.

The Republicans in Congress want to appropriate money to deal with this (bogus?) crisis.  The Dems in the Senate won't go along unless money for Israel and forest fires is thrown into the pot.  Is this a legitimate Demo concern? Or is this another example of the sickening gridlock that has brought good government to a halt in DC?  Or is it even something worse… a cynical attempt by the Democrats to set the Republicans up for blame on the eve of elections?

The bottom line is that election, reelection and the sinecures of power, privilege and prestige are what drive our politicians --- I would never call them "statesmen" --- while the West burns, the Border broils, and the flames creep ever closer to the heart of the nation's government.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Federal Judge denies police union's motion to intervene in the settlement by NYC of the "Stop and Frisk" litigation

Official seal of New York City
Official seal of New York City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In Floyd v. New York City, the judge penned a 108-page opinion that says the union has no interest justifying its late intervention to try and challenge the parties' resolution.

A good argument for maintaining the separation of powers?

Check out the front page on HuffPost Politics right now!


There’s no doubt that Boehner made the worst blunder of his career when he launched his frivolous lawsuit against President Obama.

How bad?

You’ve fought back with nearly $8 MILLION in grassroots contributions since Boehner announced the plan a month ago

If we can hit the $8 MILLION MARK before tomorrow’s vote to sue the President, we’ll deliver yet another humiliating setback to Boehner.

Why a New Jersey school district scrapped its laptop program:

Laptops (Photo credit: Guillaume Paumier)
"No more determined hacker than a 12 year old."

International Educators: Sign up for my August 26th Webinar on Managing Your International Student Population

Thanks to me, my university was one of the first to be certified for SEVIS when the program was started by ICE after 9/11.  My experience since then spans international student and faculty visas and the plethora of issues that surround serving our international student populations.  I've led study tours to Asia and Europe and traveled in the Middle East (that's me on the fence line of the West Bank in the photo).  I've coached Chinese students for their visa interviews and I've drafted student-exchange and study abroad agreements for affiliations around the world.  I helped establish and I supervise my school's center for international education with which I troubleshoot the vast variety of visa, employment and academic issues our international students face.

Here's what you can hope to learn:
  • Whether it’s legal to admit undocumented students
  • Whether public universities may accord in-state tuition rates to undocumented state residents
  • The fundamentals of the F-1 and J-1 visa statuses
  • What an applicant for admission from abroad must demonstrate financially
  • What constitutes full-time status and what are the exceptions to this requirement
  • When and where an international student work can work
  • What are international students’ options after graduation and how you can help them achieve their career goals
  • SEVIS certification requirements
  • Whether it’s necessary to protect your institution’s intellectual property from misappropriation by international students and post-docs