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Amendment 10A

The United States Constitution is, by and large, a very clear document. Among other things, it spells out precisely what power the federal government does and does not have -- and declares that in certain matters, the federal government has supremacy over the several states.

But of late, with the Obama administration, a situation has arisen that I believe is unprecedented in American history: what should be done when the federal government asserts its supremacy in certain areas, and then not only refuses to act, but forbids anyone else from acting? What should be done when, in the face of a crisis, the federal government demands that said crisis go unaddressed?

We're seeing that play out now, twice.

In Arizona, the state has suffered for years the burdens inflicted by the federal government's refusal to enforce border security and the laws regarding illegal aliens. It's something that has bothered many states, but Arizona has been especially hard hit. Finally, the people of Arizona had enough and passed a law demanding that its law enforcement officials do what the federal government refused to do: to enforce the existing laws on the books.

This sent the Obama regime into a frenzy. They have said, in effect, that it is the policy of the United States to not enforce its laws on illegal aliens, and nobody -- not even Arizona -- could compel it to change. They then went on to say that they might -- might -- be willing to step up and live up to their responsibilities as part of "comprehensive immigration reform," which I interpret as a form of political blackmail: "give us what we always want on this issue, and we might -- might -- just give you a token gesture of enforcement." And in the meantime, they're doing all they can to badmouth and demonize the people of Arizona. It's a variant of the carrot and stick approach, but the stick is a baseball bat with nails driven through it and the carrot is a stick of dynamite painted orange, straight from the Acme factory.

Meanwhile, in Louisiana, the state is getting slowly pounded with oil from the BP oil platform disaster. The Obama administration's response seems fixed around making sure the right people get the blame, not stopping the leaks or mitigating the damage. So Governor Jindal has said "screw it" to the idea of waiting for Washington to get off its asses, and ordering his own state to do what needs to be done to protect itself.

There are two theories in how to resolve situations like this. One solution, the more proper one, is to find some way of compelling Washington to live up to its responsibilities. It could involve finding a compromise, some kind of leverage or inducement to the current administration to do what it simply ought to do, or up and replacing them in the next round of elections. That's in the best American spirit: our system of government has been described as 'institutionalized revolution," and peacefully overthrowing a government that fails to do its fundamental duties is entirely appropriate.

Then there's the other approach: simply tell Washington to lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way. This is a very bad solution, but there are times when it is necessary.

A long time ago, I read something in a novel that has stuck with me for years, for longer than the actual book: "the work doesn't care who does it." (A quick Googling brings it back now: "Taran Wanderer," the fourth book in Lloyd Alexander's "Chronicles of Prydain.")

Arizona is being deluged with illegal aliens. Louisiana is being deluged with crude oil. And in both cases, the federal government has the responsibility to deal with the situation -- and is failing miserably. And in both cases, the states -- through their governors -- have decided that they can't wait for Washington to get off its ass and fix it, and are rolling up their own sleeves and going to work.

Which, naturally, has Washington quite irked. They don't care to have their incompetence and impotence exposed so flagrantly.

So they fume and bluster. They threaten and they stamp their feet.

In the meantime, the work still needs to be done.

Governors Brewer and Jindal are getting the work done.

What the Obama administration needs to grasp is that it isn't the actions of these governors that makes it look incompetent. It's their own incompetence that is making them look incompetent. And tearing down others who are actually achieving things isn't an actual achievement.


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Comments (22)

Remember Obama said "I will... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

Remember Obama said "I will not rest" until the Gulf oil leak was under control . . . he wants you to know the two rounds of golf he's managed since saying that weren't "rest" at all and in fact were very stressful. It seems reports of the oil leak, international financial crisis, impending war on the Korean peninsula, Iran getting nukes, Israel building apartments, combined with the new problem that apparently some people are sneaking into the country illegally, have weighed heavily on his mind and been a major distraction to his golf game.

This in turn makes the game go longer, which means even less time for Obama to do the serious work of studying himself in his array of full-length mirrors to find an appropriate pose to strike which will both inspire the American people to believe he has the situation well in hand and, at the same time, distract them from the evident fact that he does not.

Only then will the rubes in flyover country quiet down and stop keeping him from the important work of golf and mirrors.


I agree that the federal go... (Below threshold)

I agree that the federal government has responsibility for securing borders and enforcing immigration laws, but I'm a little confused about constitutional authority or responsibility for oil spills. Wanna spell that out for a dumb hillbilly?

Cindy,How about: ... (Below threshold)


How about: If the federal government had the constitutional right to sell BP that oil lease, they at least share the responsibility to clean up the mess. As I told my children when they were growing up, asserting a right means taking on a responsibility. Does that help?

ANd if they also had the ri... (Below threshold)

ANd if they also had the right to hand wave BP past standard permissions and procedures, then they also have responsibility for the mess.

FOr that matter, then I suppose Bush didn't have constitutional authority or responsibility for Katrina,. . . .RIGHT? Find a hurricane in the constitution.

I think that's the heart of... (Below threshold)

I think that's the heart of the governmental responsibility issue: if you were on the bandwagon, blaming Bush for a slow Katrina response, you'd better be on the bandwagon with this one.

How unfair is it that Louisiana and the Gulf region have yet ANOTHER disaster with which to contend? Thoughts and prayers with the coastal business owners, fishermen and others affected.

We "employ" upwards of 10,0... (Below threshold)

We "employ" upwards of 10,000 persons in the Department of the Interior. What do they do with themselves while "working"? Are they all watching p*r*? What happened to the mandatory monthly Federal inspection of that oil rig?
What happened to the Clean Water Act, which gives the President all authority to ameliorate such an oil spill? I guess Gen. Holder hasn't read that act, either.
"If a man is weak in a crisis, he is weak indeed."
The Obama regime is a crisis (not waiting to happen, but happening now).
What about those Iranian atomic bombs?
What will happen if those 12?-20? million illegals are not able to vote in November? Will the elections still take place? It is all about re-electing Democrats, and not about protecting the United States. "We are the government, and the government is Us," proclaims the Supreme Obatollah.
We are the lockstep Sen. Lickspittle Byrd, holding on for a hundred years to our Senatorial seats.
November will be very interesting.

The oil spill is but a meta... (Below threshold)

The oil spill is but a metaphor for our economy and our prestige in the world on the watch of the Obama Administration.

We can not stop the flow of... (Below threshold)

We can not stop the flow of oil over our borders until we have a comprehensive energy policy.

"In Arizona, the state h... (Below threshold)
Lee Ward:

"In Arizona, the state has suffered for years the burdens inflicted by the federal government's refusal to enforce border security and the laws regarding illegal aliens. It's something that has bothered many states, but Arizona has been especially hard hit. "


Inconvenient Truth ahead. Shield your eyes...

Violent crime fell significantly last year in cities across the U.S., according to preliminary federal statistics, challenging the widely held belief that recessions drive up crime rates.

The incidence of violent crimes such as murder, rape and aggravated assault was down 5.5% from 2008, and 6.9% in big cities. It fell 2.4% in long-troubled Detroit and plunged 16.6% in Phoenix, despite a perception of rising crime that has fueled an immigration backlash.

Racists in Arizona provided cover for their racist actions by claiming there was a violent crime epidemic and that people in Arizona weren't safe on the streets.

It was just the usual lies from the right. Total bullshit. A cover for their hate and racist rage.

In Phoenix, police spokesman Trent Crump said, "Despite all the hype, in every single reportable crime category, we're significantly down." Mr. Crump said Phoenix's most recent data for 2010 indicated still lower crime. For the first quarter of 2010, violent crime was down 17% overall in the city, while homicides were down 38% and robberies 27%, compared with the same period in 2009.

The first quarter ended with March. As the crime rate plummeted in Arizona racists there lied and claimed that the immigration problem was fueling an increase in crime. Lies.

Right wing media has provided cover for the racists by claiming that violent crime was out of control. It was a lie. Racism relies on enablers. The statistics now show they were lying.

Well, the "P" in US EPA is ... (Below threshold)

Well, the "P" in US EPA is supposed to be "Protection" but, if you want to see for yourself what EPA is officially saying they're doing, go here:


Looks like the "protection" amounts to one plane (the "ASPECT") taking pictures, a few buses sampling air quality at a few points, and some coastal water sampling.

Imagine the media actions if, during Katrina, the FEMA had limited itself to taking pictures, measuring wind speed, ....

"Violent crime fell sign... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

"Violent crime fell significantly last year in cities across the U.S"

That was bound to happen since all the most evil criminals in this country moved to Washington in January 2009.

"and plunged 16.6% in Phoenix"

Again that's to be expected. Napolitano moved to Washington and took a lot of her buddies with her.

On #9, I wonder how much cr... (Below threshold)

On #9, I wonder how much crime goes unreported?

It has been claimed (I think correctly) that rape has historically been under-reported. For another example, many will recognize the quotation, "It's Chinatown."

Another reason not to report a crime is that one is there illegally oneself. Recall the two criminals that Mr. Horn shot in 2007 in Pasadena? The two were illegals who preyed on other illegals.

On a larger demographics scale, the greying of the population has long been pointed to by forecasters as a dominant contributor to violent crime statistics. That is, violent crime has been considered to be primarily done by younger folk. Perhaps, the violent crime rate would be even lower without the contribution attributed to illegal aliens. Of course, Mr. Horn's deeds were determined not to be crimes, so that also played a role in the stats. If the two had gotten away and their thefts had gone unreported, then it still would not have gotten into the data.

Not enough information to tell anything. For all the statisticians know, the largest contributor to drops in violent crime could be drops in street price of drugs, requiring addicts to commit fewer crimes to feed their habits.

Lee Ward logic. Crime is d... (Below threshold)

Lee Ward logic. Crime is down. Illegals are here. ERGO - Illegals have caused crime to go down.

Anything else would be RACIST! Right, Lee?

Liars figure, and figures can lie. If Phoenix had 10 murders last year and no KIDNAPPINGS, but this year had NO murders and 9 KIDNAPPINGS, then VIOLENT CRIMES dropped 10%.

Keep plugging the DNC RACIST! mime, Lee. The American public ISN'T BUYING IT!

"Lee Ward logic. Crime i... (Below threshold)
Lee Ward:

"Lee Ward logic. Crime is down. Illegals are here. ERGO - Illegals have caused crime to go down."

Show us where I said the crime rate went down because of illegals.

You can't. Your reading comprehension skills are down around 2nd grade.

The crime rate went down in Arizona while racist conservatives were claiming that Arizonians were victims of run-away crime spree - that there was murder in the streets and that the people of Phoenix just weren't safe because of the drug wars, etc.

It was a lie. Just another cover for right wing racism to spread.

Nicely thought out and writ... (Below threshold)

Nicely thought out and written. As an Arizonian, I frustrated by misinformation about this law. Among other things, the laws says a US drivers license is sufficient proof of legal residence. I have never been stopped, in a car or on foot as a teenager, without a request for ID.

Show us where I said the cr... (Below threshold)

Show us where I said the crime rate went down because of illegals.

And YOU question MY reading comprehension?

As for 'showing' anything. How many times have I asked that you SHOW proof of YOUR statement that Commissioner Pierce is a RACIST!?

Oh, that's right, Lee doesn't 'do' requests. Lee Ward just shoots his mouth off.

Lee has left with his tail ... (Below threshold)

Lee has left with his tail between his legs (again).

No, no GarandFan. I'm just ... (Below threshold)
Lee Ward:

No, no GarandFan. I'm just waiting for someone intelligent to come along to debate. You're an idiot.

Know anyone with an IQ higher than room temperature?

I didn't think so...

A personal attack Lee?... (Below threshold)

A personal attack Lee?

The highest compliment I can pay you is one written by another recently. It is pure poety. Allow me to quote it:

Lee Ward on Wizbang Blue is a small version of our government today, only much more insidious. Lee Ward is either 1. an insane, unrepentant liberal; 2. a bleary-eyed sociopath who gets off throwing verbal bombs; or 3. a pre-teen adolescent running amok on his single Mom's computer...either way, he can sure put a high sheen on a fecal dollop...

Not doing your job - good w... (Below threshold)

Not doing your job - good work if you can get it.

[For a light hearted take on our present peril]

lee - "and plunged 16.6... (Below threshold)

lee - "and plunged 16.6% in Phoenix"

Well that's slightly deceiving considering the USA crime rate overall went down 5.5% in 2009. (FBI figures, not mine)

And perchance lee you could explain why Phoenix rates as the #2 kidnapping capital just behind.... wait. for. it.... Mexico, January 28, 2010

The kidnapping problem in Phoenix, however, as widely reported by various news agencies in the past year, involves victims who are either illegal aliens or connected to the drug trade. Some officials have commented that all the Phoenix kidnappings are connected to illegal immigration but that the actual numbers (359 in 2007, a 10-year high, 366 in 2008, and 302 for the first 11 months of 2009) account for just one-third of the reported kidnappings taking place in the metropolitan area. People are just not reporting all the kidnappings.
What say you lee/

And BTW your "plunging 16.6%" also fails to account for far less illegals entering ue to the recession.

Less illegals = less crime... but you'll never admit that or even figure out the connection.

Lee is perfectly happy to c... (Below threshold)

Lee is perfectly happy to call people racist based solely on their skin color and location.

So who is the real racist ?

I'm sorry, ignorant racist ...

Lee Ward, a proud member of the party of the KKK and supporters of the Jim Crow laws who voted against the Civil Rights laws ...

The Democrats are the historically racist party in America ...






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