Choosing immigration criteria is a Sisyphean task

WASHINGTON — In 1790, the finest mind in the First Congress, and of his generation, addressed in the House of Representatives the immigration issue: “It is no doubt very desirable that we should hold out as many inducements as possible for the worthy part of mankind to come and settle amongst us.” Perhaps today’s 115th Congress will resume the Sisyphean task of continuing one of America’s oldest debates, in which James Madison was an early participant: By what criteria should we decide who is worthy to come amongst us?

The declining respect for the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause

The states created the national government and for the sake of the union the states relinquished their absolute individual power and sovereignty to that newly created federal government. The Supremacy Clause is the most important guarantor of national unity. Article VI, Paragraph 2 of the U.S. Constitution establishes that the federal Constitution, and federal law generally, take precedence over state laws.

Can there be a charitable reading of ‘s—hole?’

CAMDEN, S.C. — While recently perusing unread books gathering dust on my shelves, one tome caught my eye and, upon being loosed from the grip of neglect, fell open to a random page from which leapt the following sentence: “The ancestors of a critical and growing mass of present-day Americans existed in dung heaps of humanity amidst rotting vegetables.”

Alarm fake, but what if it wasn’t?

The fiasco of last Saturday’s mistaken missile warning will no doubt be exhaustively analyzed and the protocol for such systems improved if not perfected. But the proper dissemination of accurate information concerning a forthcoming nuclear attack requires much more than an effective “early warning” system.

Trump is at war with the central ideal of the Republic

WASHINGTON — Sometimes it is necessary to begin with the obvious. The claim that America needs more Norwegian migrants and fewer Africans from “sh-thole countries” is racist. It is not the same as arguing for a higher-skilled immigrant pool. That argument might go something like: “We need a higher-skilled immigrant pool.”

It used to be so much simpler, and better

Way back as a kid, I was driving to Naalehu in Ka’u and while rounding a curve on the narrow road with no center line, I came across a loaded dump truck that took up most of the road, heading in the opposite direction. Visibility was poor and I was traveling too fast for the prevailing conditions.