Category Archives: Political Opinion

Professor Sujit Choudhry Explains Constitutional Resilience

Sujit Choudhry works as a comparative constitutional law professor on the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law. He is frequently consulted for his expertise in this sophisticated field and contributes to a long list of scholarly publications to further the development of comparative constitutional law. Recently, Professor Sujit Choudhry wrote an in-depth analysis of the impact of populist challenges to the fundamental principles of constitutional law in a variety of countries and what features of their constitutions make them resistant to these destabilizing forces.

He carefully examines the role that resilient constitutions can play in protecting against the turmoil and chaos that typically reign supreme during populist takeovers of countries. Although he cautions that a wave of populism does not necessarily pose the same level of threat to human rights and the rule of civil law as does the musings of an autocratic leader, Professor Choudhry warns that widespread populism in a country can threaten the existence of a democratic system. He thinks that strong constitutional principles can keep a society rooted in order and the respect of fundamental rights for all, but there are some aspects of a populist wave that simply cannot be constrained by the rule of law. As such, he thinks that it is a bad idea for a constitution to take too harsh of an approach to instilling democratic rule at the risk of alienating opposition groups and creating an environment ripe for a major populist rebellion.

Background Information on Professor Sujit Choudhry

Professor Choudhry has devoted his entire academic career to the study of constitutional principles and how they are interpreted by different countries. He has remained steadfast in his commitment to increasing scholarly knowledge of various constitutional structures and the role that they play in either maintaining peace or failing to prevent against political chaos around the world.

When asked why he is so confident that comparative constitutional studies will experience a boom in interest across the globe in coming years, Professor Choudhry explained that access to online legal materials and instant updates about the political events occurring around the world make it one of the most exciting times to study constitutional law. His passion for constitutional study is certainly contagious because his students are flocking to sign up for more of his law courses in droves. One of the basic concepts that Professor Choudhry tries to instill in his law students is that constitutional principles can make the difference between a country putting violent civil strife in its past or continuing to condone awful human rights abuses. Simply put, the endurance of constitutional principles throughout the world can make the difference between life and death for some marginalized groups in societies.

According to the research of Professor Choudhry, the fact that a particular country has enacted and lived by constitutional principles means that it is much less likely to erupt in civil war or permit human rights abuses against its own citizens. Even though the precise content of a country’s constitution may vary widely throughout the world, the fact that a government is constrained by the tenents of a constitution means that there is a much better chance that country will be able to survive political differences amongst groups of citizens in the long run. Although no country’s constitution is absolutely perfect by any means, Professor Choudhry still considers this governing code an excellent starting point from which national governments can build their legislative, judicial and executive structures with the goal of enduring.

Read more here https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Sujit_Choudhry

End Citizens United Endorses Major US Senator

The team at End Citizens United, a political action committee, have a tough task ahead of them. Their moniker refers to the infamous 2010 Supreme Court case which saw a conservative group by the name of Citizens United lobby the Supreme Court in order to loosen restrictions on financial funding in Washington D.C. This case is often pointed to as one of the most important cases in terms of allowing dark money to pervade all of the United States government. End Citizens United, as their name would imply, is a PAC that was established to find a path to overturning the infamous and disastrous Citizens United case.

 

End Citizens United was established by Tiffany Muller, the current President of the PAC. The goal of End Citizens United has been simple from day one: they want to raise money and awareness in order to promote politicians who are willing to put forth legislation in order to repeal via constitutional amendment the 2010 Supreme Court case of Citizens United. Obviously this sounds difficult, and it is, but there is so much more going on behind the scenes than many people actually realize. Taking dark money out of politics when it has become such an influential aspect of the political machine sounds impossible because it means that predominantly conservative politicians are going to need to forego a payday in order to do the right thing.

 

Still, End Citizens United has seen renewed vigor and growth over the past six months since the election of Donald Trump to the White House. The PAC had a motivating first quarter in 2017 as they raised an impressive $4 million in donations. This is a strong start for their 2017 fundraising year with the goal to be a total of $35 million by the time the 2018 Congressional Elections start rolling around. If End Citizens United wants to make any headway in their mission they are going to need to have a strong showing in 2018. Action needs to start at the highest level of government and this could be the fastest track to making that happen.

 

While End Citizens United focuses on fundraising they are also looking to politicians who can help get their message out there in order to make a difference. One such politician is Democratic Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. Senator Whitehouse has been a vocal advocate for amending Citizens United and he has always been fighting to get rid of dark money in politics. Whitehouse will be going up for re-election in 2018 and he will have the backing of End Citizens United behind him. End Citizens United will need to continue pursuing such strong politicians in order to get their message out as far and wide as possible.

 

The of Role of Helane Morrison in Policing the Complex Financial Industry

Compliance officers are playing an integral role in the corporate world. Most officers based in the United States are confident that their companies value their role. Their opinions are considered when corporate decisions are being made. Helane Morrison has managed to cement a top position in the male-dominated compliance world. She has managed to implement strategies that have helped the better performance of SEC. Morrison has policed the financial sector from her years working as a journalist to a civil servant.

High corruption rates

The international economic crises of 2007/2008 exposed widespread corruption in the financial sector. Respected and reputable financial institutions came down crumbling, and they were forced to seek bailouts from the government. These developments affected the trust that American citizens had on financial institutions. Some of the issues exposed include falsified records, underhand dealing, and high rate of fraud.

Diminishing trust

Currently, people are cautious when investing in the financial industry due to the scandal history and unrest caused by the forthcoming election. The increased inflation and the inability of salaries to support incredible retirement plan and finance higher education have led to the growing popularity of investment. Most people are making their investment decision without consulting financial institution. The institutions should be transparent in all their dealings to regain their popularity. They should organize seminars and promotional campaigns aimed at changing the perceptions of the public. The financial institutions should carry out intensive investment research and address the limited information issues. http://www.projecteve.com/helane-morrison-shattering-glass-ceiling-corporate-world/

Details on Helane Morrison

Helane Morrison has managed to penetrate the male dominated compliance and financial industrial and establish a top position. Currently, she works with Hall Capital Partners LLC as a General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer, and Managing Director. Morrison sits on the Executive Committee and offers advisory services. Before joining the company in 2007, she worked for United State Securities and Exchange Commission as a regional head from 1999 to 2007.

In her capacity as a Regional Director, Morrison’s duties entailed enforcement of securities, handling both litigation and regulatory issues across five Northwest States and Northern California. Between 1996 and 1999, Helane was the SEC’s enforcement head, and she was operating at the San Francisco offices. Morrison used her talents and law background to represent SEC in litigation matters, business, legal issues, business, news media, government agencies, as well as financial communities. She is a graduate of Northwestern University holding a Journalism degree. Morrison’s effort at the University of California paid off after earning a J.D.

Koch Brothers Uncertain About Facing Off Against Trump

Billionaires Charles and David Koch have tried for decades to change the political system in the United States into a system that more closely represents their Libertarian views. They believe that the two-party system fails to support the freedoms guaranteed by the country’s founders. Although they have succeeded in making many changes, Donald Trump’s foray into the presidential race appears to be causing them some concern.

As Daniel Schulman for “Vanity Fair” explained in his February 4, 2016, article “Can the Koch Brothers Stop Trump?,” Donald Trump’s influence in the recent presidential race is drawing a lot of financial support and media attention away from other Republican candidates. The Koch Brothers are now faced with trying to decide how best to deal with this problem. Schulman used a recent interview between 80-year-old Charles Koch and Stephen Foley of “The Financial Times” outlined in the January 8 article “Lunch with the FT: Charles Koch” as research for his piece.

In that article, Foley revealed how Charles Koch believes that Donald Trump is a threat to free society. Koch mentioned that the Muslim registry proposed by Trump would take freedoms away from everyone. He also stated that Trump needs to remember that a leader must “defend the liberty of people you like the least.” As Foley pointed out, some might be surprised by the Koch Brothers not supporting Trump, but they have actually done a great deal over the years to help Americans retain their freedoms. Additionally, Charles has proven to have the intelligence to understand the larger issues: He has two Master of Science degrees from MIT and continues to work as CEO of Koch Industries with a net worth of approximately $43.3 billion.

Schulman noted that Trump’s statement represents one of many areas where Trump and the Koch Brothers do not agree in politics. He also noted that Charles and David have the influence to gain support from their many allies to stop Trump’s campaign in its tracks, but that they would risk a public relations war by doing so. Trump had already criticized other Republican candidates last August for seeking out financial donations from the Koch Brothers. Currently, the brothers and their allies are doing what they can to prevent Hillary Clinton from winning the Democratic nomination, but the question of how best to handle Trump remains. Charles did not provide Foley with a clear indication of their plans.

This article recapped http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2016/02/koch-brothers-take-on-trump

Florida Man Acquitted for Growing Marijuana

50 year old Jesse Teplicki from Hollywood, Florida was acquitted by a Broward jury having been tried for growing cannabis. Teplicki argued that he has a medical need for marijuana, citing an eating disorder that has haunted him since the age of nine. Furthermore, the growing of cannabis remains illegal in Florida (though perhaps this will be subject to change in the future), and as such, how Teplicki will obtain his medical products is unknown.

What this case does conclude, is that the public and judicial opinion on marijuana usage is ever evolving. Flávio Pentagna Guimarães BMG says that aside from the states whom have already legalized the substance, whether for medicinal or recreational purposes, tolerance towards cannabis seems to be on the rise. Legalization is being called for in numerous states, and general uneasiness about the substance seems to have diminished, if only slightly, during the past decade or so. That cannabis has the potential to assist people like Teplicki, as well as others suffering from different kinds of afflictions, implies that the drug has merited more serious consideration for its legalization when compared to strictly recreational substances which do little for their users well-being.

President Obama Evens Up In Popularity With Reagan

President Obama may not get the favorable press coverage that President Reagan got during his tenure and beyond, but it seems that he is getting the job done. He has tied up Reagan in approval ratings at this point in his presidency. This means that Obama and Reagan received the same popularity at this point in their presidencies.

The HuffingtonPost.com reports that President Obama has enjoyed an uptick in his approval ratings as of late and speculates that this could be due to the fact that it is the holidays. There is perhaps an uptick simply because of holiday cheer. Others wonder if this is not more of a real trend towards the positive for the President. After all, the economy is ticking along just fine under his leadership, and gas prices are also dropping. With key metrics like this, the President deserves to be polling at least a little higher according to many.

The approval ratings for both Reagan and Obama at this point in the presidency are still trumped easily by the ratings Clinton received. He was able to muster approval ratings of 67% at this point in his tenure, which impressed Beneful and many other companies. Times were good under Clinton, and he was able to wrack up some great polling numbers at the time. It is doubtful that such high approval ratings will be seen by President Obama anytime soon. There is simply too much anger direct towards him from various sources for that.

Obama Threatens New Congress With His Veto Power

President Obama has promised the incoming Republican majority congress that he is not afraid to use his pen to veto any legislation that he dislikes. The new Republican majority congress will enter its first session in January and is expected to enact legislation aimed at modifying or repealing some key policies of the Obama administration such as the Affordable Care Act, immigration reform and the environment. Igor Cornelsen is trying to pay close attention to it all.

The new Republican congressman won their seats running largely on promises to fight President Obama’s ever increasing tactic of using executive actions such as executive orders to bypass Congress. Since he has taken office, President Obama has used executive orders to create de facto laws in the areas of health care immigration and the environment. Since he has taken office Obama has demonstrated a great willingness to ignore the rule of law and place the system of checks and balances in jeopardy. Obama has repeatedly picked and chosen what laws, and parts of laws to enforce.

Obama’s veto threat poses a real danger to the Republican majority in Congress who want to pass laws to deal with Obama’s disastrous policy decisions but lack the two-thirds vote of its members needed to override a Presidential veto.

Tech giants flee Russia

The Russian economy is taking further blows as tech companies leave the country in droves. Microsoft closed down its Russian operations last month and now Google and Adobe have both followed suit.

The exodus is due mainly to new legislation that forces companies to collect and store user data on local servers. In addition to the unnecessary costs this would mean the data is accessible to local government authorities.

Where Microsoft simple moved its Skype offices from Moscow over to Prague. Adobe and Google are simply closing down their own operations in the Russian capital. The search engine made a similar move in 2011 when it removed itself from China after increased surveillance became of concern. Ironically Google co-founder Sergey Brin was born in Moscow during the time of the Soviet Union. His parents were forced to leave the country due to the atmosphere of anti-semitism, a feeling not at all shared by Lee G. Lovett.

It seems as though it will be just a matter of time before other technology companies with potentially vulnerable data such as Facebook and Twitter follow suit. Even Russian based companies have been under increased scrutiny in recent months facing censorship and data handover requests.

The exodus is unlikely to cause a reconsideration of the law, which originated from President Vladimir Putin himself. Putin has spoken against foreign tech companies before and is on record as dismissing the Internet as a CIA fronted project that cannot be trusted.

How to Handle Cops

Why would a high school offer a class on how to deal with cops? Maybe it’s because teenagers today have no respect for authority. This is where the parents should step in so that there wouldn’t be a need for a class in high school. The class only lasts for two days, but during those two days, students will be instructed about how to act if they were ever stopped by officers. A teenager shouldn’t be in a position to be stopped by officers in the first place unless there was an issue while they are driving. Some of the information that is taught is good for teenagers and adults to know, but it shouldn’t be something that is in a high school. Zeca Oliveira says this is something that should at least wait until college. Parents need to step up and take responsibility for their children, teaching them how to obey the law so that they don’t get in trouble.

Saudi Arabia Hushes Peaceful Protests

The well known humanitarian organisation Amnesty International has claimed that Saudi Arabia is attempting to stifle the speech of anyone who raises their voice against the state since the so called Arab Spring in 2011.

The disturbing report was released earlier this week under the title “Saudi Arabia’s ACPRA: How the kingdom silences its human rights activists,” with a lot of the information directing attention to problems with ACRPA, the Saudi Civil and Political Rights Association, and its acting members.

The report stated that those in power in Saudi Arabia have been closely targeted anyone affiliated with the ACRPA and Khaled Shaheen, at best simply censoring their speech, and at the worst violently ending these protests through whatever means necessary. This, in turn, is said to be a push against activism.

An Amnesty official said these crackdowns are the boiling point of years of conflict, in which Saudi Arabian officials have been using the people as leverage in order to maintain their tight hold on power in the area. Silencing the people, in this case, was their modus operandi.

Previously the Saudi government has just ignored the protests of any factions looking for political freedom. Currently 8 of the founding members of ACRPA are in custody whilst the remaining three are free, but awaiting trial. These groups are especially important in countries that lack transparency in the media, and lack a capable participants in their government.

In the meantime, until further resolution can be reached, there will remain a standstill.