Cat Tracks September 5
The crisis in Syria has been getting progressively worse for months, and President Barack Obama is stuck in a corner. U.S. spy agencies reported that on Aug. 21, Syrian government forces used chemical weapons to kill more than 1,400 Syrian rebels and civillians, including at least 426 children.
“The use of chemical weapons violates international norms and crosses clear red lines that have existed within the international community for decades,” said Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser for strategic communications and speechwriting at the White House, in a statement.
Although a U.S. strike on Syria is not yet a certainty, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved Obama’s resolution granting the president limited authority to launch a military strike against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces. No one wanted it to come to this, yet here we are, and the reputation of the U.S. is at stake.
Congress will have its hands full when it returns to work next week. Another government shutdown is looming as we near October, and it feels like the newspapers can just copy and paste their old stories — it’s the same old problem, only maybe even worse.
Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) is leading an initiative to defund The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which is nothing more than a last ditch effort to stop a law that has been passed through both chambers of Congress, signed into law by the president and upheld by the Supreme Court.
A new survey from the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation found that 57 percent of Americans disapprove of the proposal to cut off funding in order to stop the Affordable Care Act from going into effect. Lee and other Republicans should stop throwing a fit over a dead issue and instead work on finding a way to help America’s economy flourish again.
What ever happened to this “comprehensive immigration reform bill” that the Senate passed with 68 votes from both Democrats and Republicans? Oh, that’s right — Speaker of the House John Boehner happened.
Although Boehner admits that undocumented immigration is a “serious problem” that should be dealt with, his strategy of breaking up immigration reform into a series of smaller bills just won’t cut it.
For a true, bipartisan compromise to be reached, a single, comprehensive bill must have bits and pieces of what each party wants, with concessions from each side. This would be impossible if the bills were separate.
Is it really too much to ask of the House to just use the bipartisan bill they already have?
For the time being, Edward Snowden is off the radar. The House voted in July to continue the National Security Agency surveillance program, despite the extremely rare alliance between libertarian Republicans and liberal Democrats seeking to scale back the spying program.
“Have 12 years gone by and our memories faded so badly that we forgot what happened on September 11?” Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) asked members of Congress.Although it’s hard to directly attribute any foiled terrorist plots to just one facet of the many intelligence operations the federal government runs, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Most American citizens don’t have anything to hide, and by sacrificing some of their freedoms, they can help the government find those who do.