Monday, July 10, 2017

Roy Moore critique

I think it is the job the Alabama news media to critique the positions of the Senate candidates. I don't know if they have or will do so. Please furnish links to same, so I can post them here.

Pending hearing from the Alabama news media, I offer my own critique of Roy Moore's positions. To do this I have copied and pasted below his positions as stated on his website, and my critique (which is largely my own views) is set out in red at various places. Also, additional useful information about Roy Moore's positions is set out in this Alabama Reporter article, which I will refer to as the "Moseley Article".

Judge Roy Moore's Position on National Issues, 2017

[In doing this critique, I will indicate an underlying bias in my views. My bias is I think Congress is broken by hyperpartisan division between the two parties. I think the two parties' establishments, and lobbyists and one sided special interest groups in Washington DC, use the political division for preserving and growing their power and wealth. (I will use the term "iron triangle" to refer to the party establishments, the lobbyists and the one sided special interest groups.) A key for the iron triangle is keeping the citizens divided into perpetually warring Republicans and Democrats, and thereby disable the citizens from acting in a unified way against the iron triangle. The main weapon of the iron triangle is the high costs of elections and their access to funding that the citizens cannot fight (I call it the "money monster" in politics). The money monster needs corralling if the citizens are going to be properly served by their Congress and President.]  


Lower taxes, smaller government, and less spending will reduce the deficit and enable economic growth and a truly "stimulated" economy. [I believe the Federal debt has gotten out of control. I don't believe it can be gotten under control in the hyper partisan environment of two warring political parties which cannot talk to one another.]
I believe in the reduction of taxes at all levels, and a need to reform the tax system by studying and implementing a "flat tax" or a "fair tax," which is a tax on goods and services purchased instead of a tax on income. [The monstrous tax code services the iron triange for getting campaign contributions and other funding that businesses and others are compelled to contribute to fight for favorable treatment or avoid unfavorable treatment under the tax code. The hyperpartisanship must be ended before a satisfactorily simpler tax code can be achieved. There are arguments for and against a flat tax or a fair tax. Besides simplicity, it is, however, hard to know for sure how much benefit for the economy would be achieved.]
To paraphrase an old saying, the only two things in life that are certain are death and taxes, but the truth is we are being taxed to death while our businesses are failing and our economy continues to suffer. [There are other important factors besides taxes that bear on how businesses and our economy will do in the 21st century.]
We must return American manufacturing to our Country by rescinding unfair "free trade" agreements which have severely damaged our economy through loss of jobs and skill development. The phrase "Made in America" should mean something again. [The complications and uncertainties involved here are enormous, I doubt that there is a sure fire blueprint about what to do, and the United States is going to have to feel its way through the changing economy and changing job markets in a changing world.]
We should cut the deficit and balance the budget using accurate data unlike budget projections used by past administrations. [Congress has failed at prudence for 20 years or more. The iron triangle has undermined prudence.]


As a former Judge and Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, I know that the Constitution of the United States is the Supreme Law of the Land and all officials, state and federal, Legislative, Executive, and Judicial are bound thereby. All actions of state and federal officials must conform to the Constitution which should only be changed by amendments of the people, not decisions of activist judges. I support impeachment of judges and justices who knowingly and intentionally violate that principle.
Separation of Powers, Checks and Balances, States' Rights, and our Bill of Rights are integral parts of the Constitution which we must observe.

[The process of nominating and approving Supreme Court justices has become over-politicized. End the hyperpartisanship in Congress, and I think there will be more general acceptance of Supreme Court decisions.]


We must stop the flow of illegal aliens across both our northern and southern borders. [I agree. Also Congress needs to address and agree on what should be done with the illegal immigrants who are in the country, which it has failed to do because of the iron triangle benefits from hyperpartisanship on immigration.] Open borders are a threat to our national security and to our economy. [I agree the country cannot have open borders.]
We must allow willing states (like Arizona) to protect the health, safety, and welfare of their citizens, and use our own military to protect our border. If a wall is our only option, then we should build it immediately. [The iron triangle prevents reasonable solutions from being agreed to.]

Health Care

We do not need socialized medicine which will ultimately lead to loss of quality and affordability of heath care, as well as a loss of access to the latest medical technology. Obamacare should be completely repealed as soon as possible.
Businesses should receive tax credits for employee health care coverage, and health insurance should be available between the states for competition and quality care.
Churches and charitable organizations should be encouraged to help the needy and poor.

[I am unclear what Roy Moore ultimately wants on health care. In the Article, he says the Federal government should have no role in health care. A little bit contradictory, in the Moseley Article, it is reported Roy Moore questions McCarren-Ferguson, which he says has allowed states to impose undesirable restrictions on health insurance. In all events, I think Roy Moore is way off base in addressing how the country can best endeavor to satisfy the health care needs of its citizens. I have extensively set out my views, which can be accessed starting at Health care and the links there and also at Health care critique. Roy Moore evidences no inclination to engage in intelligent consideration of the immensely difficult issues surrounding health care. I hope that changes.]


As a former military officer, Vietnam veteran, and graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, I believe in a strong military defense, and I will be a vocal advocate for the men and women who now serve in the Armed Forces.
More funding should be available to develop a missile defense system and to provide our Navy, Air Force, Army, Marines, and Coast Guard with the most modern technology including weapon systems. [The military is a huge cost for the country. There is probably a ton of waste and pork. I have heard it said that the main division between Republicans and Democrats is over how much should be spent on the military versus use of funds for domestic purposes. If that division exists, I wish for it to be lessened.]
Homosexuality should be against military policy as was the law prior to Bill Clinton. [There are strong changing mores in United States society. I have no idea how much our military power is affected by homosexuality in the military.]
We should not be entangled in foreign wars merely at the whim and caprice of a President. [There have been problems in the exercise of the war powers clause by Congress. I am not sure what to do about this.]


To gain independence from foreign oil, we need to foster development of our own natural resources involving nuclear, solar, wind, and fossil fuels. Coal mining and oil drilling should be encouraged, subject only to reasonable regulations. [Most Democrats, Republicans and independents have similar interests in wanting the benefits of energy and in wanting to pass on a decent physical world to their descendants. The iron triangle foments hyperpartisan division on the issue and prevents reasonable accommodations that most Americans can find acceptable given the trade offs.]


The federal government should not hamper the educational systems of the states as there is no authority for federal involvement under the Constitution.
Programs like "Common Core" should be eliminated, and the development of educational programs returned to the people under state authority.
Competition between the states and freedom of various educational structures should be available to parents who are charged with the responsibility to teach their children.
Charter schools, vouchers, tax credits, home schooling, Christian schools, and technical training should be encouraged.

[I am in favor of local control over education. Primary education in the United States suffers from numerous sources of impairment, of which teacher unions is one.]

Foreign Affairs

America should serve as a good example to other nations.
We must treat sovereign nations as we would want to be treated and stand with allies to protect and preserve our national security.
Respect for our strength is the best defense. "Walk softly and carry a big stick" is and should be our guide.
We should not be subject to UN control and direction and should not rely on, or support, UN treaties like LOST (Law of the Sea Treaty) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Such treaties only undermine our sovereignty as a nation, as does the very presence of the United Nations on our soil.
We must maintain a strong nuclear defense and not rely on nuclear reduction treaties which leave us vulnerable to foreign powers.

[I try to do an intelligent read of, say, a book like Richard Haas' recent The World in Disarray and see what I can believe the United States should do. The country needs to have a President, a State Department, and a Defense Department, staffed with thousands of experienced and knowledgeable persons in whom the country has trust to try to steer the United States through the 21st century.]


As a husband, father, and grandfather, I know the importance of the future we leave to our posterity.
A strong family based on marriage between one man and one woman is and should remain our only guide and model. I oppose abortion, same-sex marriage, civil unions, and all other threats to the traditional family order.
Federal funding for Planned Parenthood or any form of abortion should be stopped.
We must remain a moral and virtuous people, "One Nation under God." I support freedom of worship and the recognition of that God upon Whom we have always relied in peace and war.

[I don't know how much inspiration can be provided by a United Senator for making Americans moral and virtuous. There are numerous other qualities that I believe are important for a United States Senator to have to serve his constituents well. Someone like Richard Shelby should comment on what he thinks would make for an excellent United States Senator from Alabama. I don't have a basis for an opinion of whether same sex marriages can or cannot provide for an equally strong family as a heterosexual marriage. I would like Roy Moore to explain more why he thinks the United States must outlaw abortion and why he cannot live with others being able to choose to have an abortion .]

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