Tag Archives: Executive Orders

Merit Not Hype

Judging policy and actions by merit not by partisanship or popularity

Let me begin by saying clearly that I did not vote for Trump. I felt most represented by Gary Johnson. That being said, I support the Constitution, those sacrificing for our freedom in the armed forces, the flag of the United States, and the ideals the founding father put forth. I also support the office of the president, if not the person occupying that office from time to time.

In my estimation, Donald J. Trump appears to be a lousy human being in general. I find many of his exhibitions of moral character, or lack thereof, deplorable; however, like many previous presidents, it is not their personal lives that are of greatest concern to us as a nation. It is their actions as president that we should be focused on.

In his first week, the President posted 4 Executive Orders to the Federal Register. I am not a big fan of Executive Orders. The last three administrations relied heavily on the privilege to do things that either should have required congressional and senatorial approval or were things that the government shouldn’t have been involved with in the first place.

There has been a lot of hub-bub over the Executive Orders issued in these early days of the new administration and hysterics over their reported effects. I have an aversion to EOs in the first place, so I felt it behooved me to actually read the orders issued so far rather than relying on the interpretation of others.

If you are prone to post about things in a headline panic, I would suggest you take a little time to read the actual EOs. The 4 orders take up 2, 2, 6, and 5 pages respectively, and they are all in plain English. All of them consist of the administration’s position on the subject at hand and directions to the secretaries of the relevant departments of the executive branch, mostly DHS, to follow the administration’s position within the confines of existing law.

Yup, enforce the laws already on the books. In some cases, they are instructed to potentially create new administrative laws through the proper processes and with the appropriate allowances for Requests for Comments from the public. Even more important, these directives are to be funded through the proper channels, mostly funds already allocated to these areas and in so much as funding is available. Another point is the frequent mention of reports with deadlines for the secretaries to get back to the Office of the President on progress. There are also clauses that include transparency and reporting to the public.

While I will concede to a few potential interpretation issues, the policies are not horrific or draconian as the media, extream left, or people who just don’t like Trump would have you believe. It appears that the President’s modus operandi for his term in office will be to run the government as its CEO and that he recognizes that the people are shareholders.

The most ‘radicle’ statement was “It is the policy of my Administration to seek the prompt repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.” (emphasis added by author) The key word here is SEEK the prompt repeal. The EO is not a repeal itself.

Everything in the EO “Minimizing the Economic Burden of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Pending Repeal” [EO 13765 Jan 20, 2017] has to do with things like “minimise the unwarranted economic and regulatory burdens” and “afford States more flexibility and control” as stated in the first section of the order. At least in my mind, State control over the health and welfare of their own citizens is far more efficient than a federal, centralized system. It is also more equitable to the rest of the nation.

The constitution was clearly designed to promote State rights over federal dominion with very few exceptions, those being mostly related to interstate commerce and national defense. Federalization of anything else is generally an overreach of the federal government, from a constitutional perspective.

I know the Affordable Care Act, immigration reform, and border security are hot issues, but please, take a little time to read what is actually being issued from the Office of the President before contributing to the headline panic. We should all remain alert, and when warranted, organize to defend our constitutional rights. In the mean time, how about scaling back on the sharing of media-frenzy and do a little fact checking BEFORE posting or emailing to everyone we know about the latest “travesty” or “injustice.”

The statement “I will build a wall, and Mexico will pay for it!” is a gross oversimplification of what the EO proposes as policy, again within the current laws and existing legislated funding. Read the EO for yourself. It’s only a few pages, and remember it is policy, not law.

I will remain skeptical and vigilant in reviewing Executive Orders as they are issued, and I remain cautiously optimistic about the High Office and its current occupant. When it comes right down to it, I am loyal to the constitution, not those elected to public office. They serve at our pleasure, not their own.

To review Executive Orders go to the Federal Register

A few parting words from a former president:

Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer.
~John F. Kennedy

Until next time, be vigilant, be informed.