George Will, whose columns 30 years ago often made sense, lately seems to confuse the guy in his mirror with Zeus or Jehovah. His Feb. 22 column excoriated President Obama’s supposed “executive authoritarianism,” as seen in actions involving the EPA and the Office of Civil Rights.
My own view, doubtless less informed than Lord George’s, is to agree that OCR (not Obama) has probably stuck its nose too far into matters that universities deal with mostly just fine on their own. The EPA is a different matter. What happens to the environment, from coal-fired power plants, frack-induced methane or whatever, affects every single soul – living and yet unborn – in America and indeed on Earth. Somebody has to keep EPA on course. With congressional guidance absent, the only somebody available is the president (even if the Supreme Court doesn’t like it).
What the Will types who fulminate about “this lawless administration” conveniently overlook is that “lawless” means without laws, and that making laws is the legislative branch’s job. If we’ve been limping along without normal law-making, don’t blame the executive. It’s Congress that decided in 2009 to obstruct Obama instead of legislating – and did exactly that, from then to now.
Ann T. Berry