Weird, Who Would Have Predicted This?

I wrote on the day of Obama's inauguration:

I will be suitably thrilled if the Obama administration renounces some of the creeping executive power grabs of the last 16 years, but he has been oddly silent about this.  It seems that creeping executive power is a lot more worrisome when someone else is in power.

From Charlie Savage in the New York Times:

As a senator and presidential candidate, he had criticized George W. Bush for flouting the role of Congress. And during his first two years in the White House, when Democrats controlled Congress, Mr. Obama largely worked through the legislative process to achieve his domestic policy goals.

But increasingly in recent months, the administration has been seeking ways to act without Congress. Branding its unilateral efforts “We Can’t Wait,” a slogan that aides said Mr. Obama coined at that strategy meeting, the White House has rolled out dozens of new policies — on creating jobs for veterans, preventing drug shortages, raising fuel economy standards, curbing domestic violence and more.

Each time, Mr. Obama has emphasized the fact that he is bypassing lawmakers. When he announced a cut in refinancing fees for federally insured mortgages last month, for example, he said: “If Congress refuses to act, I’ve said that I’ll continue to do everything in my power to act without them.”

  • me

    Obama has a worse civil liberties record even than Bush II (and that president set some very unfortunate records). It's amazing how far we have come in terms of loss of individual control over ones own life - and I am not just talking unfettered police violence, but also basic property rights (I've recently investigated what it'd take to move my household and belongings to a different country. You'd be surprised how constrained the use of what you might think of as "my money" actually is :( )

  • Ted Rado

    The expansion of USG power is becoming overwhelming. If this keeps up, in a generation or two we will have an elected dictatorship. It amazes me that people are willing to trade their independence and freeedom for government handouts. This destroys the will to work and makes us all into deadbeats.

    I need to go to the men's room. I wonder if I need an EPA permit to pollute the water? How about a permit so I can exhale CO2? Living on a deserted island looks better all the time.

  • a_random_guy

    Of course, Congress just sits and takes it. If the Congresscritters actually cared, they could take action. Pass legislation defunding the president's activities. Censure the president. Appeal to the courts. Heck, appeal to the voters.

    Clearly, Congress is content to let the President do whatever he wants, as long as their personal gravy train continues to run...

  • Russ R.

    My solution to the problem of "creeping executive power" would be an adaptation of the 27th amendment.

    If the President is going to argue that some matter falls within the authority of his office, then he cannot exercise that authority until after the next election.

  • http://www.cogfactory.net colson

    @Russ R: I'd follow that by decreasing the term limit to one term.

  • Doug

    @colson: the problem with that is that then you'll have a rush to implement this crap faster, and without any consequences, too. There is already a path to correct these sorts of abuses, and it's called impeachment. Congress has the power to do something about it, but they're unwilling to exercise it.

    I agree that all of this constitutes massive abuse of power, which I thought SHOULD have been the ultimate presidential test for Ron Paul. You know, the guy who loves the Constitution so much that he's running for office to defend it? In the meantime saying zip about any of these abuses? Paul could have made Obama's year-end recess appointments his signature campaign piece, but instead said (or more appropriately "did") nothing about it. If a guy like Ron Paul isn't going to do anything about this crap, who is?

  • caseyboy

    We the people are represented through the House of Representatives. The House has the power of the purse and could use to get control, but they are toadies.

    I think Thomas Jefferson once something to the effect that, the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of patriots and tyrants from time to time.

  • IGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States

    >>> It amazes me that people are willing to trade their independence and freeedom for government handouts.

    Bread, Circuses. No surprise there.

    >>>> I wonder if I need an EPA permit to pollute the water?

    YES, you do.

    >>> How about a permit so I can exhale CO2?

    No, this is covered by your "Carbon Tax" payments. Don't worry that they are not being imposed right now, they'll be applied retroactive to your birth when the economic s*** hits the fan and the government Needs Your Money NOW!!

    >>> Living on a deserted island looks better all the time.
    a) Don't take anything with you. Seem "me" above your comment.
    b) You think that's going to stop them? You better have a large army on that island, you worthless deadbeat ripe suck///////// sorry, "Citizen"

  • IGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States

    >>> @Russ R: I’d follow that by decreasing the term limit to one term.

    I'd follow THAT by decreasing his life span to slightly less than tomorrow.... like yesterday sounds about right. That should properly limit application of this principle to really really SERIOUS presidential types.

  • ErisGuy

    "do everything in my power to act without them"

    The Constitution is a dead letter. No one who matters believes in a government whose powers are limited by covenant.