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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Friday, May 20, 2005

A Real "Nuclear" Option

Silence implies consent.

If you have been paying attention for a long time, Faithful Reader, you'll have known from reading The Blog from the Core that the Senate has been in a stalemate over the filibustering of judicial nominations by the minority for more than two years. In fact, the employment of the "nuclear" option was a hot topic two years ago this month. And what do you think about that "nuclear" business? A mere simple majority vote to change a rule that allows a small minority to dictate the actions of the group — is nuclear? What kind of insular, insulated, peculiar world do you have to live in to think like that?

Anyway, here's my proposal for a real "nuclear" option. I base my thinking on the classic truism of Anglo-American thinking: silence implies consent.

Let's have a look at how the Senate's role in the appointment of judges is prescribed in the federal constitution; it is actually described where the president's power to appoint them is delineated:

He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

Here's my suggestion for a real "nuclear" option: take back the authority to where it belongs, in the president. Let's have a presidential appointment come to the Senate in a form something like this:

To the Honorable the Senate of the United States:
Pursuant to my authority under Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution, I herewith appoint So-and-So to the office of Such-and-Such. Unless he shall have been rejected by the Senate within 60 days, it shall be assumed that the Senate consents to this appointment, whereupon So-and-So shall be sworn in as Such-as-Such.

How about that?

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 05/20/05 07:43:59 AM
Categorized as Political.


Readworthies VIII

A handful of interesting, informative, and insightful articles.

News, editorials, columns, essays, et al.

Two Popes, One Leader, a house editorial @ The National Catholic Register (ht):

Now we know.
Now we can better understand what God had in mind when he gave us Pope John Paul II. He had Pope Benedict XVI in mind.
First of all, make no mistake about it: The election of Pope Benedict XVI is first and foremost an indication of what God wants for the Catholic Church. Don’t let the public reaction fool you — or even the reaction of some in the Church.
As critics pile on Pope Benedict in the days to come — and they will, like we’ve never seen — we need to remember that the papacy was established by Christ for a Church guided by the Holy Spirit. Since God is the one guiding the Church, we can look at these two popes he has given us as signs of his will....

Bible Illiteracy in America by David Gelernter @ The Weekly Standard (ht):

A report just issued by the Bible Literacy Project (more on this later) suggests that young Americans know very little about the Bible. The report is important, but first things first: A fair number of Americans don't see why teenagers should know anything at all about the Bible.
Scripture begins with God creating the world, but there is something these verses don't tell you: The Bible has itself created worlds. Wherever you stand on the spectrum from devout to atheist, you must acknowledge that the Bible has been a creative force without parallel in history....

Doubting Rationalist: "Intelligent Design" Proponent Phillip Johnson, and How He Came to Be by Michael Powell @ The Washington Post (ht):

"The Washington Post is not one of my biggest fans, you know that."
The Washington Post reporter has just walked out of a spray of Pacific-borne rain into the living room of a modest bungalow west of downtown. There's a shag rug, an inspirational painting or two and Phillip Johnson, dressed in tan slacks and a sweater and sitting on a couch. He pulls a dog-eared copy of a Post editorial out of his shirt pocket and reads aloud:
"With their slick Web sites, pseudo-academic conferences and savvy public relations, the proponents of 'intelligent design' — a 'theory' that challenges the validity of Darwinian evolution — are far more sophisticated than the creationists of yore.... They succeed by casting doubt on evolution."
The 65-year-old Johnson swivels his formidable and balding head — with that even more formidable brain inside — and gazes over his reading glasses at the reporter (who doesn't labor for the people who write the editorials)....

Brothers, unbeknownst to each other, unite in Iraq by Cpl. John E. Lawson Jr. @ Marine Corps News (ht):

Two Sailors, deployed together to Iraq, made a life-altering discovery a mere two days before departing Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Sean Hurley, an operating room surgical technician corpsmen serving with Surgical Company, Combat Logistics Battalion 2, 2d Force Service Support Group (Forward), lived most of his life in the Virgin Islands with his mother. Raised as an only child, Hurley knew little about his father.
Seaman Albert Hendrick Jr., a sick call and surgical shock trauma corpsman, on the other hand, grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y., and knew his father.
These Sailors may appear to have a few things in common: their choice to live a life of service in the U.S. Navy, the desire to help people as corpsmen in the medical field, and their unit. But the two Sailors proved to have a lot more in common than they had ever imagined: their blood line....

The "Media Party" is over by Howard Fineman @ MSNBC News (ht):

A political party is dying before our eyes — and I don't mean the Democrats. I'm talking about the "mainstream media," which is being destroyed by the opposition (or worse, the casual disdain) of George Bush's Republican Party; by competition from other news outlets (led by the internet and Fox's canny Roger Ailes); and by its own fraying journalistic standards. At the height of its power, the AMMP (the American Mainstream Media Party) helped validate the civil rights movement, end a war and oust a power-mad president. But all that is ancient history.
Now the AMMP is reeling, and not just from the humiliation of CBS News. We have a president who feels it's almost a point of honor not to hold more press conferences — he's held far fewer than any modern predecessor — and doesn't seem to agree that the media has any "right" to know what's really going in inside his administration. The AMMP, meanwhile, is regarded with ever growing suspicion by American voters, viewers and readers, who increasingly turn for information and analysis only to non-AMMP outlets that tend to reinforce the sectarian views of discrete slices of the electorate....

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 05/20/05 07:27:44 AM
Categorized as Readworthies.


"May, 1840"

Random Poetry List XXXIX

A lovely morn, so still, so very still,
It hardly seems a growing day of Spring,
Though all the odorous buds are blossoming,
And the small matin birds were glad and shrill
Some hours ago; but now the woodland rill
Murmurs along, the only vocal thing,
Save when the wee wren flits with stealthy wing,
And cons by fits and bits her evening trill.
Lovers might sit on such a morn as this
An hour together, looking at the sky,
Nor dare to break the silence with a kiss,
Long listening for the signal of a sigh;
And the sweet Nun, diffused in voiceless prayer,
Feel her own soul through all the brooding air.

Hartley Coleridge (1796-1849)

Originally e-mailed on Sunday, May 20, 2001 @ 6:19 PM.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 05/20/05 07:10:26 AM
Categorized as Literary & Random Poetry List.


Thanks to...

... the Curt Jester @ Ignatius Insight — who puts The Blog from the Core in very good company.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 05/20/05 06:56:49 AM
Categorized as Blogosphere Stuff & WorldWideWeb Stuff.


"Darkness At The Edge Of Life"

By Francis W. Porretto at Eternity Road:

Recent decades have seen a development in fiction, both written and visual, that I'd never have been able to predict from what preceded it: the embrace of purposelessness, with a hearty side dish of incoherence.
Let me clarify that a bit: major figures in the entertainment world are presenting us with "heroes" and "protagonists" who, consciously or otherwise, disavow all purpose in life. The depictions of their lives emphasize their immersion in disconnected sensations and their constant struggle to evade the logical conclusion of their rejection of purpose: suicide.
It's my belief that this fashion in entertainment is neither leading the trend in human affairs nor following well behind it, but is depicting it more or less accurately as it currently runs. An increasing number of Americans are electing to live purposeless lives. Lives squandered in pursuit of ephemeral pleasures. Lives in which commitment to a goal larger than oneself has no place. Lives in which nothing that endures is allowed to matter....

(Thanks, Amanda.)

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 05/20/05 06:46:28 AM
Categorized as More Than Blogworthy.


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