The Trade Act of 2002

(Continuation of List of United States federal legislation, 2001-present)

The Trade Act of 2002 (Pub.L. 107-210, H.R. 3009, 116 Stat. 933, enacted August 6, 2002; 19 U.S.C. §§ 3803–3805; U.S. Trade Promotion Authority Act) granted the President of the United States the authority to negotiate trade deals with other countries and gives Congress the approval to only vote up or down on the agreement, not to amend it. This authority is sometimes called fast track authority, since it is thought to streamline approval of trade agreements. This authority makes it easier to negotiate deals, which engenders both support and opposition, opposition coming from labor and environmental groups.
The last time the President was granted fast track authority was to negotiate the Uruguay Round Agreement of the World Trade Organization. The Uruguay Round was completed just as the fast track authority expired in 1994. The President went without the authority until it was renewed in 2002. The trade promotion authority expired in July 2007.

George Herbert Walker Bush

George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) is an American politician who served as the 41st President of the United States (1989–93). A Republican, he had previously served as the 43rd Vice President of the United States (1981–89), a congressman, an ambassador, a Director of Central Intelligence, and is currently the oldest surviving president.
Bush was born in Milton, Massachusetts, to Senator Prescott Bush and Dorothy Walker Bush. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Bush postponed going to college, enlisted in the US Navy on his 18th birthday, and became the youngest aviator in the Navy at the time.[1][2] He served until the end of the war, then attended Yale University. Graduating in 1948, he moved his family to West Texas and entered the oil business, becoming a millionaire by the age of 40.
He became involved in politics soon after founding his own oil company, serving as a member of the House of Representatives, among other positions. He ran unsuccessfully for president of the United States in 1980, but was chosen by party nominee Ronald Reagan to be the vice presidential nominee, and the two were subsequently elected. During his tenure, Bush headed administration task forces on deregulation and fighting drug abuse.
In 1988, Bush launched a successful campaign to succeed Reagan as president, defeating Democratic opponent Michael Dukakis. Foreign policy drove the Bush presidency; military operations were conducted in Panama and the Persian Gulf at a time of world change; the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 and the Soviet Union dissolved two years later. Domestically, Bush reneged on a 1988 campaign promise and after a struggle with Congress, signed an increase in taxes that Congress had passed. In the wake of economic concerns, he lost the 1992 presidential election to Democrat Bill Clinton.
Bush is the father of George W. Bush, the 43rd President of the United States, and Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida. He is the most recent president to have been a World War II veteran. Until the election of his son George W. Bush to the presidency in 2000, Bush was commonly referred to simply as “George Bush”; since that time, the forms “George H. W. Bush”, “Bush 41”, “Bush the Elder”, and “George Bush, Sr.” have come into common use as a way to distinguish the father from the son.

James Knox Polk

James Knox Polk ( /ˈpoʊk/ “poke”; November 2, 1795 – June 15, 1849) was the 11th President of the United States (1845–1849). Polk was born in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.[1] He later lived in and represented Tennessee. A Democrat, Polk served as the 17th Speaker of the House of Representatives (1835–1839) and Governor of Tennessee (1839–1841). Polk was the surprise (dark horse) candidate for president in 1844, defeating Henry Clay of the rival Whig Party by promising to annex Texas. Polk was a leader of Jacksonian Democracy during the Second Party System.
Polk was the last strong pre–Civil War president, and he is the earliest of whom there are surviving photographs taken during a term in office. He is noted for his foreign policy successes. He threatened war with Britain over the issue of which nation owned the Oregon Country, then backed away and split the ownership of the region with Britain. When Mexico rejected American annexation of Texas, Polk led the nation to a sweeping victory in the Mexican-American War, which gave the United States most of its present Southwest. He secured passage of the Walker tariff of 1846, which had low rates that pleased his native South, and he established a treasury system that lasted until 1913.
Polk oversaw the opening of the U.S. Naval Academy and the Smithsonian Institution, the groundbreaking for the Washington Monument, and the issuance of the first postage stamps in the United States.
He promised to serve only one term and did not run for reelection. He died of cholera three months after his term ended.
Scholars have ranked him favorably on the list of greatest presidents for his ability to set an agenda and achieve all of it. Polk has been called the “least known consequential president”[2] of the United States.

LVRJ Editorial: Benghazi blunder: Obama unworthy commander-in-chief

Las Vegas Review-Journal
Benghazi blunder: Obama unworthy commander-in-chief
Posted: Nov. 1, 2012 | 2:01 a.m.
U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans died in a well-planned military assault on their diplomatic mission in Benghazi seven weeks ago, the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. So why are details surfacing, piecemeal, only now?

The Obama administration sat by doing nothing for seven hours that night, ignoring calls to dispatch help from our bases in Italy, less than two hours away. It has spent the past seven weeks stretching the story out, engaging in misdirection and deception involving supposed indigenous outrage over an obscure anti-Muslim video, confident that with the aid of a docile press corps this infamous climax to four years of misguided foreign policy can be swept under the rug, at least until after Tuesday’s election.

Charles Woods, father of former Navy SEAL and Henderson resident Tyrone Woods, 41, says his son died slumped over his machine gun after he and fellow ex-SEAL Glen Doherty – not the two locals who were the only bodyguards Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration would authorize – held off the enemy for seven hours.

The Obama administration was warned. They received an embassy cable June 25 expressing concern over rising Islamic extremism in Benghazi, noting the black flag of al-Qaida “has been spotted several times flying over government buildings and training facilities.” The Obama administration removed a well-armed, 16-member security detail from Libya in August, The Wall Street Journal reported last month, replacing it with a couple of locals. Mr. Stevens sent a cable Aug. 2 requesting 11 additional body guards, noting “Host nation security support is lacking and cannot be depended on,” reports Peter Ferrara at But these requests were denied, officials testified before the House Oversight Committee earlier this month.

Based on documents released by the committee, on the day of the attack the Pentagon dispatched a drone with a video camera so everyone in Washington could see what was happening in real time. The drone documented no crowds protesting any video. But around 4 p.m. Washington received an email from the Benghazi mission saying it was under a military-style attack. The White House, the Pentagon, the State Department and the CIA were able to watch the live video feed. An email sent later that day reported “Ansar al-Sharia claims responsibility for Benghazi attack.”

Not only did the White House do nothing, there are now reports that a counterterrorism team ready to launch a rescue mission was ordered to stand down.

The official explanation for the inadequate security? This administration didn’t want to “offend the sensibilities” of the new radical Islamic regime which American and British arms had so recently helped install in Libya.

The official explanation for why Obama administration officials watched the attack unfold for seven hours, refusing repeated requests to send the air support and relief forces that sat less than two hours away in Italy? Silence.

An open discussion of these issues, of course, would lead to difficult questions about the wisdom of underwriting and celebrating the so-called Arab Spring revolts in the first place. While the removal of tyrants can be laudable, the results show a disturbing pattern of merely installing new tyrannies – theocracies of medieval mullahs who immediately start savaging the rights of women (including the basic right to education) and who are openly hostile to American interests.

When Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney promptly criticized the security failures in Benghazi, the White House and its lapdog media jumped all over him for another “gaffe,” for speaking out too promptly and too strongly. Prompt and strong action from the White House on Sept. 11 might have saved American lives, as well as America’s reputation as a nation not to be messed with. Weakness and dithering and flying to Las Vegas the next day for celebrity fund-raising parties are somehow better?

This administration is an embarrassment on foreign policy and incompetent at best on the economy – though a more careful analysis shows what can only be a perverse and willful attempt to destroy our prosperity. Back in January 2008, Barack Obama told the editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle that under his cap-and-trade plan, “If somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” He added, “Under my plan … electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.” It was also in 2008 that Mr. Obama’s future Energy Secretary, Steven Chu, famously said it would be necessary to “figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe” – $9 a gallon.

Yet the president now claims he’s in favor of oil development and pipelines, taking credit for increased oil production on private lands where he’s powerless to block it, after he halted the Keystone XL Pipeline and oversaw a 50 percent reduction in oil leases on public lands.

These behaviors go far beyond “spin.” They amount to a pack of lies. To return to office a narcissistic amateur who seeks to ride this nation’s economy and international esteem to oblivion, like Slim Pickens riding the nuclear bomb to its target at the end of the movie “Dr. Strangelove,” would be disastrous.

Candidate Obama said if he couldn’t fix the economy in four years, his would be a one-term presidency.

Mitt Romney is moral, capable and responsible man. Just this once, it’s time to hold Barack Obama to his word. Maybe we can all do something about that, come Tuesday.

November 2: Matthew Chapter Thirteen in Blank Verse by Day Williams


That same day Jesus went out of the house
And sat down by the lake. Such large crowds came
And gathered round him that he stepped aboard

A boat and sat in it, while all the people
Stood on the shore. He told them many things
In parables like this: “A farmer was

Sowing grain in his fields, and as he scattered
The seed, some fell along the path, where birds
Came by and ate it up. Some fell on rocky

Places, where there was little depth of earth.
It sprang up quickly in the shallow soil.
But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched

By the heat and they withered, for they had
No root. Some seeds fell in thorns, which grew up
And choked the plants. But some fell on good soil,

Where it produced a crop−a hundred, sixty
Or thirty times what had been sown. He who
Has ears, let him hear.” The disciples came

To him and asked, “Why do you talk to them
In parables?” He answered, “You have been
Given the chance to understand the secrets

Of heaven‘s kingdom, but not them. For where
A man has something, more is given him
‘Til he has plenty. He who does not have,

Even the little that he has will be
Removed, and that is why I talk to them
In parables: “Though seeing, they don’t see;

Though hearing, they don’t hear or understand.
In them Isaiah’s prophecy’s fulfilled:
“ ‘You will be ever hearing but shall not

Understand; you’ll be ever seeing but
Never perceiving. For this people’s heart
Has become hard; their ears almost deaf,

And they have closed their eyes, or with their eyes
They’d see, and with their ears they’d hear, and with
Their hearts they’d understand and turn, and I

Would heal them.’ But you’re fortunate that you
Have eyes that see and ears that hear, because
Believe me, many prophets and good men

Have longed to see what you see but did not
See it, and longed to hear what you hear but
Did not hear it. Here’s what the parable

About the sower means: When a man hears
The message of the kingdom and does not
Grasp it, the evil one arrives and takes

Away what was sown in his heart. This is
Like the seed sown along the path. The one
Receiving seed that fell on rocky ground

Is he who hears the word and eagerly accepts
It, but because he has no root, he lasts
Only a short time, and when trouble or

Persecution arrives due to the word,
He quickly falls away. The seed sown in thorns
Is he who hears the word, but then the worries

Of life and wealth’s illusions choke the word
To death so that no crop’s produced. The seed
Sown on good soil is he who hears the word

And understands it. Such men show a crop:
Some yield a hundred and some sixty and
Some thirty times what was sown.” Jesus told

Another parable to them: “The kingdom
Of heaven’s like a man who sowed good seed
Out in his field. But while his men were sleeping,

His enemy came in and sowed some weeds
Among the wheat, and left there. When the wheat
Came up and ripened, weeds appeared as well.

The owner’s servants came to him and said,
‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field?
Where then did weeds come from?’ ‘An enemy

Did this,’ he said. The servants asked, ‘Do you
Want us to go and pull them up?’ ‘No,’ he
Replied, ‘because while you are pulling weeds,

You may root up the wheat with them. Let them
Both grow together ‘til the harvest. Then
I’ll tell the harvesters to first collect

The weeds and tie them up in bundles to
Be burned; then gather up the wheat and bring
It in my barn.’ ” Another parable

He told them was this: “Heaven’s kingdom’s like
A mustard seed, which a man took and planted
In his field. Though it is the smallest of

All seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest
Of garden plants and it becomes a tree,
So the birds come perch in its branches.” Yet

Another parable he told them was
This: “Heaven’s kingdom is like yeast a woman
Takes and mixes into a large amount

Of flour until it permeates the dough.”
All these things Jesus spoke in parables
To the crowd; he did not say anything

To them without use of a parable.
So was fulfilled what the prophet spoke:
“I’ll open up my mouth in parables;

I’ll utter things that have been hidden since
The world’s creation.” Then he left the crowd
And went into the house. His followers

Came and requested, “Please explain to us
The parable of weeds out in the field.”
He answered them, “The one who sowed good seed–

He is the Son of Man. The field’s the world;
The good seed represents the kingdom’s sons.
The weeds are Satan’s sons; the enemy

Who sows them is the devil, and the harvest,
End of the world; the reapers, angels. As
The weeds are gathered up and burned in fire,

So it will be at the world’s end. The Son
Of Man will send his angels out, and they
Will weed out of his kingdom everything

That causes sin and all the wrongdoers.
They’ll throw them in the fiery furnace, where
There will be tears and gnashing teeth, and then

The good will shine out like the sun in their
Father’s kingdom. He who has ears should hear.
Heaven’s kingdom is like a treasure hid

Within a field a man discovered, then
Buried again. Then in his joy he went,
Sold all he had and bought that field. Again,

Heaven’s kingdom is like a merchant who
Was looking for fine pearls, and when he found
One of great value, he went off and sold

Everything that he owned and bought it.
“Another illustration: heaven’s kingdom
Is like a net a fisherman has dropped

Into a lake that catches every kind
Of fish. When it is full, the fisherman
Pulls it up on the shore. Then he sits down,

Collects the good fish in his baskets, but
Tosses the bad away. That’s how it will
Be at the age’s end, when angels will

Arrive and separate the wicked from
The righteous, casting them into the fire,
Where men will weep and gnash their teeth. Have you

Understood all these things?” asked Jesus. “Yes,”
They answered. “Therefore,” he continued, “those
Experts in Jewish law who have become

My followers have double treasures–old
And new.” When Jesus had concluded with
These parables, he moved on, coming to

His hometown, where he taught the people in
Their synagogue, and overwhelmed them with
His wisdom and his miracles. “How is

This possible?” they questioned. “Is he not
The carpenter’s son? And is not his mother
Named Mary; aren’t his brothers James and Joseph,

Simon and Judas? Aren’t his sisters all
With us? Then where did he get all these things?”
And they became irate with him. But Jesus

Told them, “A prophet’s honored everywhere
But his own country and in his own house.”
So there he hardly did a miracle

Due to their unbelief: their minds were dull.

–From New Testament in Blank Verse by Day Williams

November 2: Begging

November 2


As long as I can remember,
good people have never been left helpless,
and their children have never
gone begging for food.
–Psalms 37:25

The time of prayer was about three o’clock in the afternoon, and Peter and John were going into the temple. A man who had been born lame was being carried to the temple door. Each day he was placed beside this door, known as the Beautiful Gate. He sat there and begged from the people who were going in.
The man saw Peter and John entering the temple, and he asked them for money. But they looked straight at him and said, “Look up at us!”
The man stared at them and thought he was going to get something. But Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold! But I will give you what I do have. In the name of Jesus Christ from Nazareth, get up and start walking.” Peter then took him by the right hand and helped him up.
At once the man’s feet and ankles became strong, and he jumped up and started walking. He went with Peter and John into the temple, walking and jumping and praising God. Everyone saw him walking around and praising God. They knew that he was the beggar who had been lying beside the Beautiful Gate, and they were completely surprised. They could not imagine what had happened to the man
–Acts 3:1-10