Wednesday, January 2, 2019

January, 2019, Part 3, Political Class Insanity: Americans Want The Wall, Obama Broke Yet Another Law, Overpaid Government Employees, and New Mexico is A U.S. State

It is another month which means it is again time to review the latest political class insanity from Washington and around the world. Political class insanity takes many forms including the wasting of taxpayer wealth, criminal fraud within government programs, inane and stupid political quotes and actions, the inability to create and implement effective and efficient government programs, stupid and ill performing economic policies and strategies, and other forms of insanity that continue to evolve and surprise and shock us.

Let’s get started:

1) As you probably know, Trump and the Democratic Congressional leaders are in a standoff regarding whether or not to build a wall on the Mexican border to protect Americans from the criminals, terrorists, and other bad folks that take advantage of our porous border. This has resulted in many large swaths of the Federal government being shut down.

Since theoretically Congressional members should be carrying out the will of the people, who is right in the eyes of Americans, Trump or the Democrats? According to a recent article on the Godfather Politics website by Warner Todd Huston, the answer is pretty clear:
  • According to a new poll by Pew Research, 69% of those surveyed are opposed to increasing the levels of immigration in this country.
  • Only 24% said they would like to see higher levels of immigration.
  • In fact, 29% said that the country should halt immigration altogether.
  • Pew also surveyed 27 other countries and the results were similar to the U.S. results: almost no one anywhere wants more immigration into their country.
Just another example of how disconnected the Americans political class is from the desires of the country. When over two thirds of the country do not want loose borders and increased immigration, many in Washington do the exact opposite.

2) We have existing immigration laws that dictate how and when a foreigner is able to get into the country. For those of those that want to bypass those laws and get into this country anyway possible they are breaking the law and ignoring our long standing rule of law in this country. 

If someone in this country wants to change those laws, then we have established rules of law to do that, basically electing people to Congress and the White House to change those laws. Pretty simple, straightforward, and historical processes.

But according to a recent article by Jeff Dunetz, writing for the Godfather Politics website on December 20, 2018, Obama seemed to have a different take on how America works:
  • Research by the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services gave robust, expensive contracts to a single nonprofit group in 2015 and 2016.
  • The value of these contracts were $310 million.
  • The money was then used to prevent the deportation of “Unaccompanied Alien Child (UACs)” back to their home country.
  • In other words, the American taxpayer was paying to support the actions of those foreigners that had violated current federal law.
  • UACs are kids that are in this country illegally and they have no parent or legal guardian already in the country who can care for them.
  • Now while one could claim that a kid should have legal representation in an immigration court proceeding, according to current law, that representation should not be paid for by the American taxpayer: “Sec. 292. [8 U.S.C. 1362] In any removal proceedings before an immigration judge and in any appeal proceedings before the Attorney General from any such removal proceedings, the person concerned shall have the privilege of being represented (at no expense to the Government) by such counsel, authorized to practice in such proceedings, as he shall choose.”
  • In other words, the Obama administration blatantly broke the law to attain a political aim and the American taxpayer, of which 69% want no increase in immigration, paid for the breaking of that law.
  • According to Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI: “These unauthorized payments have undoubtedly speeded-up UACs’ release from detention facilities to join their families, relatives, or fellow gang members – or help them reconnect with and pay ‘pandillas,’ the criminal cartels that make enormous profits from controlling human trafficking over the southern border. My guess is that average voters would not be pleased to know that such vast amounts of their tax dollars are being spent in aid of this giant criminal enterprise.”
So what good is an existing law if a politician can ignore it at his will and even worse, use taxpayer money to abet that law breaking

3) While Obama illegally spent $310 million to defend illegal immigrants in court, unfortunately that is not the only wasteful spending of taxpayer wealth:
  • According to Chris Prandoni, writing for the Americans For Tax Reform website back in 2011, government employees at all levels of government are overpaid about $468 billion a year.
  • This is the estimate that was created by controlling for factors such as education, age, experience, intangible benefits (job security) for Federal government workers vs. comparable workers in the private sector.
  • Federal government employee wages are on average are 22% higher than what private sector employees own for the same jobs.
  • Reducing Federal government wages to the privater employee level would save the American taxpayer $46 billion a year.
  • If you include wages AND total other benefits, Federal government employees earn 30-40% more than private sector employees.
  • Federal employees also get 13 paid sick days every year and 10 days off for national holidays.
  • Federal employees receive 22% more in employer payments toward their health care than their private sector counterparts.
So not only do politicians take care of themselves when it comes to compensation, benefits, and other frills of government employment, they also take care of those government workers that work for them, all at the expense of the American taxpayer.

4) Maybe, maybe, if government employees were providing outstanding service well beyond the quality and quantity of service provided by their private sector counterparts, you maybe could justify paying them far more in wages and benefits. But anyone who has dealt with the government bureaucracy knows that this is almost never the case. 

And a recent article on the Convention of States website had a great example of incompetence when it comes to government employees’ performance:
  • Gavin Clarkson is a politician from the state of New Mexico.
  • He and his fiancee recently applied for a marriage license in Washington D.C. where the planned marriage ceremony was going to be held.
  • But when he went to D.C.’s Courts Marriage Bureau in November, the clerk handling their marriage license request refused to issue the license.
  • Apparently the government employee did not know that New Mexico was an actual one of the fifty states in the U.S.
  • Let me repeat that last insanity: the government clerk did not believe that New Mexico was part of the United States.
  • The clerk would not accept Clarkson’s valid New Mexico driver’s license as proof of his identity and insisted that Clarkson produce an international passport since he assumed Clarkson was a foreign citizen...from New Mexico.
  • Even worse, the clerk verified his position with his supervisor who supported the clerk, with him also claiming that Clarkson needed an international passport.
  • The clerk even complimented Clarkson on how well he spoke English since he was a foreigner….from New Mexico.
This incident raises two questions: could this government employee AND his supervisor be any more idiotic? Both of these folks probably get paid big bucks with high levels of benefits to provide this type of inept service. And possibly the bigger second issue is how much of a failure is our education system if grown adults do not know that an existing state is part of the U.S.?

So, another day of political class insanity: Washington ignoring the wishes and positions of the majority of Americans, another law breaking effort of Obama, overpaid government employees and horrible government service from those employees.

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