Beyond Labels

A 360° Discussion of Foreign, National and Local Policy Issues

Dec. 27: Supreme Court Commission

The Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States submitted its report to the President earlier this month. The Commission was formed in April 2021 to analyze the principal arguments for and against Supreme Court reform.

On Monday, we’ll discuss the report (all 294 pages, so think twice before hitting “Print”) and our own thoughts on the pros and cons of the various reform initiatives evaluated. Here’s a link to the whitehouse.gov page describing the Commission itself.

Executive Privilege

Last Monday, we chose “executive privilege” (in the context of the Federal government) as the topic for Monday, 20 December. I found a pretty comprehensive article on the subject in Wikipedia.

There are a number of ways I can think of to approach this topic, including:

Who should be able to assert executive privilege, and under what circumstances?

In particular, should a former president (he who shall not be named) or a former member of the executive branch be able to assert executive privilege, and under what circumstances?

Do the answers to the previous questions change, depending on which branch of government (Congress or the judiciary) has subpoenaed testimony or documents over which the privilege is asserted? If so, why?

Under what circumstances should a claim of executive privilege be deemed to have been waived, for example by prior publication? Would the waiver apply only in the case of prior publication by the person claiming the privilege?

I’m sure there are other questions that can be raised about executive privilege.

Monday 12/23: “Manliness”

This Op-Ed piece in the New York Times prompted this week’s topic, which is something like:

Has the recent evolution of our political and cultural views changed our views on the role of “manliness” in American society? Assuming we think so, how so? What’s good about this evolution? What’s not so good?

The above NYT piece starts with a reference to an address by Senator Josh Hawley on “The Left’s Attack on Men in America” [video and transcript].

Here are links to three other articles on the Hawley speech (or related subject matter):

  • Politico: “Why Republicans Can’t Stop Talking About Masculinity” [link, PDF]
  • The Independent (UK): “Madison Cawthorn calls for mothers to raise ‘monster’ men in terrifying speech against ‘demasculation'” [link, PDF]
  • Axios: “Sen. Josh Hawley defends speech on porn and video games” [link, PDF]
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