July 12, 2014 at 1:00 am


Other views on immigration, Obamacare and the Constitution

A low point for immigration

L. Gordon Crovitz, in the Wall Street Journal :The U.S. is at a low point in a long history of failed immigration policy: President Barack Obama announced last week there will be no reform bill and asked Congress for $3.7 billion to clear the border, where tens of thousands of Latin American children are languishing in camps, lured by false rumors they could stay.

This means the estimated 11 million people who have been living in the country illegally will remain, with de facto amnesty but no path to citizenship. It means tens of thousands of foreign-born technologists trained in the U.S., and untold numbers of entrepreneurs, will go home to China and India or become Canadians or Australians.

How did the U.S. lose touch with its immigrant roots? Beyond today’s partisan bickering, the larger problem is that politicians make the mistake of treating people seeking to build an American life as burdens instead of as benefits. This is not the first time.

Thirty years ago, on July 3, 1984, the Wall Street Journal published an editorial titled “In Praise of Huddled Masses.” It said: “If Washington still wants to ‘do something’ about immigration, we propose a five-word constitutional amendment: There shall be open borders.”

That was an ideal rather than an immediate prescription. “Perhaps this policy is overly ambitious in today’s world, but the U.S. became the world’s envy by trumpeting precisely this kind of heresy,” the editorial said. “Our greatest heresy is that we believe in people as the greatest resource of our land.”

Economics strongly favors more immigration.

More Obamacare regulations

Betsy McCaughey in New York Post :On July 3, with Americans preparing to celebrate freedom, the Obama administration reduced freedom by adding 1,296 pages of new regulations to Obamacare.

It was a classic pre-holiday document dump, publishing the mind-numbing rules in the Federal Register on the eve of Independence Day, when few were likely to be watching. So much for transparency.

Obamacare regulations compel doctors and their office staff, business owners, local officials and virtually everyone else subject to the law to spend hours filling out paperwork with no pay for their labor. It’s a colossal theft.

Now 4 years old, Obamacare imposes 159 million hours of paperwork a year on the public. That’s the administration’s own estimate, undoubtedly a lowball.

Even so, it’s up by 48 million hours over last year, when fewer regulations had been rolled out. And there’s more to come.

Among the July 3 rules is one that compels doctors who take Medicare to report 18 different clinical measurements on their patients, such as whether they are overweight and have been counseled about weight control.

Doctors who fail to do it will get whacked with lower payments starting in 2015.

The regulators estimate that this single report could take as long as 108 minutes per patient and consume 5.4 million hours a year nationwide. That’s time that could be spent treating patients or calling them to remind them to take their meds.

Instead, the federal bureaucracy is confiscating those hours to serve its own ends.

A 'progressive' view of the Constitution

Burt Folsom on www.burtfolsom.com : Where does President Barack Obama get his ideas on the Constitution? From the Progressives. And in particular from President Woodrow Wilson, who was president 100 years ago. Wilson was the first president who explicitly attacked the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution as well. Here’s the story.

Before he was president, professor Woodrow Wilson taught history and politics at Princeton. He admired the idea of a strong U.S. president, who could cut through red tape and use the power of government to accomplish something really important. The problem was that Constitution divided power among the president, Congress and the Supreme Court. The Founders had distrusted King George III, and human nature as well; divided power increased the chance that Americans would secure their rights to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” as described in the preface of the Declaration of Independence.

Wilson therefore began writing articles and books saying that society had “progressed” since the days of the Founders and that now, in the early 1900s, mankind knew more, and college educated experts (and professors) should be given much power to accomplish great things for America. The divided powers put into the Constitution by the American Founders were no longer necessary because society had “progressed” so much.

“If you want to understand the real Declaration of Independence,” Wilson urged, “do not read the preface.” Instead, Wilson astonishingly said, the Declaration “expressly leaves to each generation of men the determination of what they will do with their lives. ... In brief, political liberty is the right of those who are governed to adjust the government to their own needs and interests.”