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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Gail Collins, "Things to Skip in August": Gail Collins's Column?

It's August, and Gail Collins would have us believe, in her latest New York Times op-ed entitled "Things to Skip in August" (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/15/opinion/collins-things-to-skip-in-august.html?_r=0), that in the heat of summer, we should relax and allow things to "just work themselves out." Collins writes:

"August. A dead shark was found on a New York City subway. Meanwhile, at the Iowa State Fair, vegan activists broke into a refrigerated case in the Dairy Building and threw red paint on the butter cow. In San Diego, the mayor claimed the city should pay the costs of defending him in a sexual harassment lawsuit because he had never been given sensitivity training.

I am bringing all these things up to point out that you can be selective about what you have to worry about during August. It’s summertime. The living should be easy. Sometimes, if you relax, things just work themselves out."

Well, Obama and his new secretary of state, John Kerry, are certainly relaxing and allowing things to work themselves out in Egypt.

But then there are those other "things" regarding which Obama is not sitting by idly and allowing themselves to "work themselves out." As George Will writes today in a Washington Post opinion piece entitled "Obama’s unconstitutional steps worse than Nixon’s" (http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/george-will-obamas-unconstitutional-steps-worse-than-nixons/2013/08/14/e0bd6cb2-044a-11e3-9259-e2aafe5a5f84_story.html?hpid=z2):

"President Obama’s increasingly grandiose claims for presidential power are inversely proportional to his shriveling presidency. Desperation fuels arrogance as, barely 200 days into the 1,462 days of his second term, his pantry of excuses for failure is bare, his domestic agenda is nonexistent and his foreign policy of empty rhetorical deadlines and red lines is floundering. And at last week’s news conference he offered inconvenience as a justification for illegality.

Explaining his decision to unilaterally rewrite the Affordable Care Act (ACA), he said: 'I didn’t simply choose to' ignore the statutory requirement for beginning in 2014 the employer mandate to provide employees with health care. No, 'this was in consultation with businesses.'

. . . .

Serving as props in the scripted charade of White House news conferences, journalists did not ask the pertinent question: 'Where does the Constitution confer upon presidents the ‘executive authority’ to ignore the separation of powers by revising laws?' The question could have elicited an Obama rarity: brevity. Because there is no such authority."

Yup, I suppose that notwithstanding the dog days of summer, there might still be certain "things" requiring attention from American journalists, notwithstanding the fact that many are fast asleep at the wheel.

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