02 October 2007
Other Agenda Items for Congress
Back in May 2006, I laid out what I think is an achievable policy towards prospective tourists, future residents and temporary workers. The sellable part is that the burden of administration and enforcement would move from the federal administration agencies to the local, county administrative level. I'd bet that by taking half of the budget now used by Federal Agencies for immigration policy adherence and for policing those persons without proper papers or with expired papers, the federal government could fund immigration policy at the county level of administration. Everybody wins! At the local level, there would be variations in implementation and process, but that's okay because personal working, living or traveling is a local matter in a local context.
Instead of tackling this complex issue, in January 2007, Congress passed a law raising the minimum wage paid to employees. Of course, at less than $8/hour, no one escapes being the working poor person, spending hours per day yet still having to rely on someone else or some level of government's agency to have enough food, a safe place to live with potable water and heat during cold spells. All the minimum wage laws do is assuage the employers' and the not-poors' feelings of guilt by believing that a federal law will take away their responsibilities for their fellow men, women and children.
Go back and read my proposal. If you can't find it, let me know and I'll repost it.
Immigrants Everywhere! Let's have Congress Work on Other Things
What is wrong with voting "No" as a block regardless of the presence of a majority present in either house? What's wrong with sending the President a bill he has said he will veto? But, no, the Congressional leadership (Harry Reid, for the Senate) speak about compromise, bipartisanship, etc. as if the Republicans have shown any willingness to do the same since 1984 when they took control. Well, Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Reid, here are my priorities to attend to in the 110th Congress:
1. Begin the impeachment process in the House of Representatives for George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and their chiefs of staff for lying to the American people, to the United Nations regarding the need for Congressional authority to invade Iraq.
a. for conspiracy to violate U.S. law regarding the interrogations and imprisonment of those "declared" to be enemy combatants and then to deny them the right of habeus corpus, violating international law by cruel and unusual punishment while under U.S. control.
b. for violating U.S. law forbidding domestic surveillance by federal authorities without first obtaining a warrant from the Judiciary's FISA court.
c. for countermanding the intent and letter of legislation sent to the President
and signed into law by him with the use of Signing Statements that the President and Vice President consider to be more authoritative than the intent and letter of the laws sent from Congress for his signature. President Bush acts on policy and procedure legislation in the same way President Reagan wanted a line-item veto that would change the manner of implementation by his administration. Reagan never got the line-item veto power, nor should Congress and the Judiciary enable the President to use Signing Statements to alter legislation from Congress.
d. for ordering the military to attack the sovereign state of Iraq, ignoring the military's advice as to the required resources for such an action, ignoring international law, in the absence of a sufficient threat to the people of the United States by Iraq. Then, with empirical evidence of a lack of preparedness in the military's equipment and armor requirements. With a police action already active in Afghanistan under United Nations authority for the capture and punishment of Osama bin Laden of Saudia Arabia, the Al Qe'da terrorist cells in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and to reinforce the government of the elected president of Afghanistan, Mr. Karzai.
e. for the lack of authoritative control and accountability over the military, over cash owned by Iraqi nationals that had been sequestered in United States banks, for the absence of sufficient supervision of private contractors retained by the Provisional Coalition Authority and subsequently in support of Mr. Maliki the President of Iraq's new government. Included in this laxity on the part of the President as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, over the 20,000+ combattants supplementing U.S. and its Coalition forces for armed combat, for standards of conduct and accountability required of members of the U.S. military forces.
f. for Vice President's and the President's deceptive use of commercial and public media in order to present the American people with distorted or false information about the conduct of the war and the wounded and killed American military and the extent of damage, deaths and wounded Iraqis who were non-combatant, the "collateral damage." For restricting independent news reporters from observing the arrival of troops killed in action so as not to have the images of flag-draped coffins on the evening news across the nation.
g. for failing to provide the moral and ethical standards within the Administration resulting in politicization of the office of federal prosecutors, the appointment of unqualified persons to high level positions within the government based on the person's loyalty to Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney. (FEMA, Defense, Homeland Security, Treasury, and key scientific positions out of step with current expertise in those areas under their administrative authority.)
h. for allowing the inspection and regulatory functions of the federal government to atrophy to the extent that the health and safety of the populace are at risk.
What about it, Speaker Pelosi, shouldn't these crudely stated but accurate points be sufficient grounds for beginning impeachment proceedings against George Bush and Dick Cheney?
I am a 7th generation, direct descendant of Kaspar Scherffig and Magdalena (Heilman) Sherfig [sic.] through his third son (8th of 15 children) Jacob, born March 4,1769, and Catherine (Bosserman) Sherfy (1773-1844). Their son Simeon (1814-1850) married Lucretia Childs(Shepherd) Sherfy (1816-1888). Simeon and Lucretia's 6th child (first boy) was John Howard Sherfy (1849-1892). John Howard Sherfy and Laura (Tittsworth) Sherfy (1849-1914) had four daughters: Stella, Marion, Alice and Edith. Stella (Randolph) Sherfy (1876-1961) was my grandmother. Stella married Hans Theodor Hansen (1867-1944), who changed their family name to Millington just before WW I. They had four children: Cedric, Elinor, Theodore, Jr. and Meredithe. My father, Theodore Hansen Millington, Jr. (1911-1999) married Irene (Johnson) Millington (1911-1999) and had two children: Ann (Millington) Palmer (1941- ) and Peter Sherfy Millington (1945- ).
I have condensed this geneology from THE SHERFEY FAMILY in the United States 1751-1948, an historical and geneological record of 2,500 names by William Emory Sherfey.
I remember my grandmother telling me about the life at Gettysburg and gave me a Union cavalry sword that had been found in the apple orchard. My understanding of the Civil War years was that Rev. Joseph Sherfy, Stella's grandfather, sold or gave the old, stone house to the Rose family before the war, hence its current name as The Rose House.
Joseph built a new house and barn, the one existing today on the Emmetsburg Road. Apparently, Joseph's mother and grandmother remained in the 12-room Rose House. The Sherfy House barn was used by Confederate troops as a field hospital until they withdrew in retreat. It's not clear who burned it down. The barn of the Rose House had been used as a field operations post with snipers by the Confederates so it was a primary Union artillery target for the three days of battle.
The Gettysburg Museum has the last remaining canned (2) peaches from the surviving trees in an original Mason jar. In 2006, the Museum's curator said that they had completed restoring the apple orchard (between the Sherfy House and the Rose House) and that the peach orchard would be replanted within a couple of years. Before the war, Joseph Sherfy's property included the Apple Orchard, the Peach Orchard, the Wheat field, Little Round Top, The Devil's Den and Plum Run. Kaspar Scherffig and Magdalena were Anabaptist refugees from Saxony living in Holland. They arrived at Pope's Creek, Virginia,near the Custis Plantation, in 1754.
They joined the small community of Dunker Brethern. Avowed pacificists, they passed on to the Sherfy generations this religious tradition. My grandmother Stella was a Quaker in her later years.
The Brethren tradition was quite strong around Gettysburg in the 1850's. Joseph and Mary, who were running the peach business, evacuated their home with their children just before the July 1963 Battle of Gettysburg. They left the morning of July 2 for the John Trostle farm, to the south of both roundtops, but had to leave there for Littlestown, away from the fighting. Joseph and son Raphael returned to the farm on July 6 to begin salvaging what remained. Brethren communities across the states knew of and acknowledged this encounter with war by Rev. Joseph Sherfy and his family. Some of the photographs taken during the next few days in Gettysburg show dead,, bloated horses and livestock lying in rows in areas around town. The Museum has very few items from the Sherfy home, most likely because anything that could be restored and used would have been picked up by the family.
The descendants of Kaspar and Magdalena seem to have spread out throughout the country. Magdalena had 15 children, Jacob had 13, and the others had very large families.
One group descended from Kaspar and Magdalea's 5th daughter Maria (1768-1858) married Nicholas Onstott (1763-1829). Readers of Abraham Lincoln's student years may recall that he lived for some time with the Onstotts in DeWitt, Illinois while studying law. Ann Rutledge lived just up the street, too.
Six degrees of separation, eh.