Monday, January 30, 2017

The evolution of a viewpoint

As have myriad opiners since Friday, I have posted a great deal about the immigration order and its aftermath.

I am on record as saying the following in this post:

On balance, I like what has occurred over the last 24 hours. It serves notice to the world that we are serious about knowing as much as possible about the sources of the threat, and acting swiftly on that knowledge. It is of a piece with DJT's order to Mattis et al to present him with a plan for destroying - not "degrading,"  - ISIS.
Earlier today, I posted a friend's Facebook jeremiad about it, the gist of which was a listing of historical precedents. I said the parallels looked valid to me.

But, as I say in the post immediately under this one, messages to the world about being adamant about our security, and parallels to past immigration policies are now, it is clear, overriden by the political damage wrought by the order's ham-handed execution.

 For further bolstering of my assertion (beyond the spot-on Commentary piece by Noah Rothman discussed in the most recent post) that this is now the central issue in the cluster thereof, I offer a National Review editorial:

Trump’s order displays much of the amateurism that dominated his campaign. There seems to have been no guidance provided by the White House and the Department of Homeland Security to the officials nationwide who would be responsible for executing the order; and on Saturday, as refugees were being detained at airports across the country, it was reported that local officials were struggling to contact Customs and DHS higher-ups.

As did Rothman, the NRO editors employ the d-word:

Most of this confusion could have been avoided if the White House had slowed down, taken time to brief the officials responsible for carrying out the order, and ensured that the legal details were airtight. Instead, it seems that White House political advisers overrode cautions from DHS lawyers and pushed the order forward, to their own detriment. The country is now embroiled, once again, in spectacular protests, and reasonable policy has been drowned in outrage. The White House’s approach here has probably damaged future efforts in this area. 
For even further bolstering, I offer this afternoon's Guy Benson piece at Townhall:

 . . . key administration figures were never looped in, and potential allies in Congress were blindsided, a growing number of whom were left with little choice but to publicly question and condemn elements of the plan Trump dropped on their heads.
In the comment thread underneath the post reprinting my friend's Facebook rundown of historical precedents, a commenter said, to paraphrase, that it appears that the legislative branch has been hopelessly eclipsed by the executive branch.

My response:

Beginning the morning after the election, I called for the new Congress to be assertive and robust, to be proactive with its own agenda so as to be able to stand up to Squirrel-Hair. 

Said Congress so far gets about a B minus at that.
That grade may be going up a little. The growing number of potential Congressional allies alluded to by Benson is a picture of a wide array of types of Republicans.

Benson also, at the end of his piece, says that a certain other development of the last 72 hours, the elevation of Steve Bannon to a seat on the National Security Council principals committee, may wind up sparking even greater outrage than the immigration order.

In any event, the combination of the two developments is sure to taint, if not overshadow, tomorrow's SCOTUS-pick announcement.

This is what those of us who opposed DJT through the closing of polls on November 8 warned about.

1 comment:

  1. A week into it and some reasonable Trumpsters are already saying they regret their vote too. Your hero Cruz did us no favors by ultimately courting Trump's either, after all the absurdities of the campaign. But you said he wanted party unity. Your "principles' have been sorely damaged, but you'll soon be decrying the low info and otherwise damning the protests and/or protesters. I don't know how we're gonna do it, but Trump must go. I know you agree with one thing though: Trump must go!