The World and Everything in It - February 14, 2022
On Legal Docket, oral arguments in a Supreme Court case about bond hearings in the deportation process; on the Monday Moneybeat, the latest economic news; and on History Book, significant events from the past. Plus: the Monday morning news.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: Good morning!
The Supreme Court considers whether people in deportation proceedings are entitled to a bond hearing within a certain time.
NICK EICHER, HOST: That’s ahead on Legal Docket.
Also today, the Monday Moneybeat: another month of high inflation. I’ll talk it over with economist David Bahnsen.
Plus the WORLD History Book. 85 years ago, this week—a man-made textile discovery.
REICHARD: It’s Monday, February 14th. This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.
EICHER: And I’m Nick Eicher. Good morning!
REICHARD: Up next, Kristen Flavin has today’s news.
KENT COVINGTON, NEWS ANCHOR: Washington warns Russian invasion of Ukraine imminent » U.S. officials say the long-anticipated Russian invasion of Ukraine could come as soon as this week. Jake Sullivan is a spokesman for the U.S. State Department.
SULLIVAN: We have seen over the course of the past 10 days a dramatic acceleration in the buildup of Russian forces, and the disposition of those forces in such a way that they could launch a military action at any time.
More than 130,000 Russian troops are now massed along Ukraine’s border. Over the weekend, Washington ordered an evacuation of the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv. And the State Department is urging all other American citizens in Ukraine to leave at once.
SULLIVAN: As long as those commercial transit options are available, Americans should avail themselves of them. They should move out by air, or rail, or road as rapidly as possible because if there is military action, if there is a war between Russia and Ukraine, started by a Russian invasion of Ukraine, President Biden is not intending to send in American forces to fight Russia in that war.
But the list of commercial transit options is getting shorter. Ukraine’s air traffic safety agency has declared the airspace over the Black Sea a “zone of potential danger.” It recommends planes avoid flying over the area for the next six days.
Dutch airline KLM has canceled all flights to Ukraine until further notice. In 2014, a Malaysian jetliner flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down over a part of eastern Ukraine held by Russia-backed rebels.
On Saturday, President Biden talked to Russian President Vladimir Putin for about an hour, trying to ease tensions. Putin continues to insist he has no plan to invade Ukraine and wants to find a diplomatic solution to the growing crisis.
But Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the evidence suggests otherwise.
BLINKEN: The way for Moscow to show that it wants to pursue that path is simple. It should deescalate, rather than escalate. And it should not only talk about seeking a diplomatic outcome, but actually work one.
On Sunday, Biden spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to renew promises of economic retaliation if Russia does invade. But Zelensky continues to downplay U.S. concerns, even as the Ukrainian military held a drill near the border with Russian-annexed Crimea over the weekend.
Canadian police clear blocked border crossing » Canadian police have cleared a blockade at one of the busiest border crossings in the country. The Ambassador Bridge carries 25 percent of all trade between Canada and the United States. It links Windsor, Ontario, home to several Canadian automotive plants, with Detroit.
Drivers protesting pandemic-related restrictions had blocked the bridge since February 7th.
On Saturday, police persuaded most of the protesters to move. By the time officers moved in on Sunday, only a few remained. Police arrested 12 people and towed seven vehicles.
SOUND: [Sound of truck horn]
Meanwhile, protests in the country’s capital, Ottawa, continued for their third straight weekend. Police there estimated about 4,000 people filled downtown streets to call for an end to vaccine mandates and other restrictions.
AUDIO: It's a freedom of choice, it's not about any. I am vaccinated but my thing is, that was my choice. And if someone beside me choses to not, that's none of my business. And it's the freedom of choice.
The protest began as a convoy of truckers frustrated by cross-border vaccine requirements. But it has grown to include others who are ready for an end to all pandemic restrictions.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has resisted calls to use the military to clear the protesters. Local police say they are waiting for reinforcements before implementing a plan to end the demonstrations.
Protests in Paris and New Zealand » The Canadian protest has inspired others as far away as Europe and New Zealand.
SOUND: [Airhorn and chants of ‘Freedom! Freedom! Freedom!’]
Protesters have been camped outside New Zealand’s parliament building in Wellington for a week. Not even a tropical cyclone that blew in over the weekend could convince them to pack up and go home.
SOUND: I've been to a few protests in my day, but it's never felt like this, where people just want their lives back, they do. And people are sad because they have lost family members, they've lost their jobs, they've lost their businesses, their livelihood, it's crazy.
Police initially used the parliament building’s sprinkler system to soak protesters, in hopes it would encourage them to go home. When that didn’t work, they used loudspeakers to blast decades-old Barry Manilow songs and the 1990s earworm hit “Macarena.”
Protesters responded with their own soundtrack, including Twisted Sister’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It.”
AUDIO: [Sound of car horns, cheering]
Similar protests are also taking place in France, where a convoy of about 300 vehicles drove to the border with Belgium on Sunday. They are protesting the “vaccine pass” required to enter restaurants, cafes and other public places.
LA Rams win the Super Bowl » Super Bowl LVI is in the books. WORLD’s Leigh Jones has that story.
LEIGH JONES, REPORTER: The Los Angeles Rams took home the Lombardi Trophy on Sunday, beating the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20.
It was the team’s first NFL title since the 1999 season, when they won as the St. Louis Rams. And they did it in their current home stadium, making them the second consecutive Super Bowl host to win the championship. Tampa Bay became the first last year.
Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp won the Most Valuable Player award after making eight receptions for 92 yards and two touchdowns. His 1-yard reception from Matthew Stafford with less than 2 minutes remaining in the game gave the Rams the lead that carried them to victory.
Reporting for WORLD, I’m Leigh Jones.
I’m Kristen Flavin. Straight ahead: bond hearings for illegal immigrants.
Plus, a revolution in women’s fashion.
This is The World and Everything in It.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: It’s a brand new work week for The World and Everything in It and we’re so glad you’ve joined us today! It’s Monday, February 14th, 2022. I’m Mary Reichard.
NICK EICHER, HOST: And I’m Nick Eicher. It’s time for Legal Docket.
Last week, the Supreme Court let stand Alabama’s new congressional map the state legislature drew after the 2020 Census. The court will decide the dispute on the merits next term. So what that means is the current map Alabama’s GOP-led legislature drew will stay in place throughout 2022.
This question is at the Supreme Court because a group of black voters sued, making the claim that the new map violates the Voting Rights Act and dilutes the black vote. A lower court agreed with the argument and ordered a newly drawn map. But a majority five justices put a halt to that for now—without providing a rationale, which is typical in emergency docket opinions. But two of those five justices wrote concurring opinions saying it’s just too close to the elections to change the map now.
REICHARD: Now onto oral arguments. These involve several cases argued in January with similar facts and laws, so I’ll deal with them interchangeably.
These have to do with bond hearings. Those are legal proceedings that give a person in detention a chance to leave the facility and live life outside while inside his case is pending in court.
Listen to Justice Stephen Breyer on who receives a bond hearing:
BREYER: I mean, you know it as well as I do, everybody gets bail hearings that you’re going to detain for a significant amount of time, every criminal case. Debtors used to, in debtor prison. Mental people being confined in hospitals have the equivalent. Extradition people get the hearing. I looked at every case we could find. I didn't find any that said you don't get eventually a bail hearing when you're detained for a reasonably long length of time.
But in the cases before the court now, the detainees are not citizens of the United States. They are noncitizens who want to avoid deportation.
So what rights do they have?
Their lawyer, Matthew Adams:
ADAMS: It’s a bedrock principle in our legal system that where the government seeks to lock up a human being for a prolonged period, that person is entitled to a hearing before an independent decision maker to determine whether detention is justified.
Well, hold on there, the government lawyer said. “Prolonged” and “entitled” are loaded words with assumptions that may not be accurate.
Listen to Deputy Solicitor General Curtis Gannon:
GANNON: Congress can make rules for noncitizens that it can’t for citizens and that detention during removal proceedings is constitutionally permissible.
And Congress did make rules and the plain text says nothing about time limits or who decides what about bond hearings. And the courts have no business to rewrite statutory language to create new rights.
But Justice Breyer brought it back to the method by which he would interpret the law. That is, look at context in other areas of law, and then extend it to new areas. (Note: You’ll hear the name “Blackstone.” Justice Breyer will be referring to the English jurist William Blackstone.)
BREYER: And that's why Blackstone in 1771 said that the king's bench or its judges may bail in any case whatsoever. Okay. Now, you think that's not in the Constitution, the Eighth Amendment, liberty. I mean, please. Okay. So the question is, can you read that in? And the really basic thing is, why in heaven's name shouldn't you read that in here where it goes the detention is too long?
But not every justice follows the “Can you read that in” way of thinking. They’d stick to the text and its plain meaning, and leave it to Congress to set down immigration practices.
For clarity, I’ll place exaggerated emphasis on two important verbs in the relevant law. It says, the government “shall” detain a noncitizen for the 90 days after the noncitizen receives a deportation order; after that, the government “may” detain him— if that person doesn’t pose a flight risk or a danger to the community. Someone has to determine that.
“Shall” is a command, meaning that it is mandatory. “May” is optional, at the discretion of the person making the decision. One little word, great big difference.
Some prior Supreme Court decisions contribute to the confusion.
For example, one decision going all the way back to 2003 seems to permit long detention times for criminal aliens. Listen to then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist on why Congress enacted this particular law.
REHNQUIST: In the light of evidence showing that deportable criminal aliens, who are not detained, continue to engage in crime and fail to appear for their removal hearings in large numbers. We have held before that in the exercise of its broad power over naturalization and immigration, Congress may make rules as to aliens that would be unacceptable if applied to citizens. We also have held that detention during the deportation proceedings is a necessary part of the deportation process.
So, the government argued, high court precedent favors indeterminate detention times for this population.
But the aliens’ lawyer says that case involved a different clause in the federal law from the clause in dispute here. The relevant Supreme Court opinion came before that, and it supports his clients.
Lawyer Adams for the noncitizens points to this opinion, read by Justice Breyer more than two decades ago, back in 2001.
BREYER: The case before us involves aliens, who no other country will take, at least not so far, and we hold in interpreting the provision as applied to those aliens who are in confinement, that the statute does not permit the Attorney General to keep them in custody indefinitely, but rather it implicitly limits custody to a period reasonably necessary to bring about the alien’s removal.
… and lawyer Adams argued that “reasonable time” is implied as 6 months’ detention. After that, the government has no power to hold someone without a hearing.
But the government counters that’s only so when no other country will take the person. That’s not the situation here. Mexico will take them back.
Justice Elena Kagan took the detainees’ perspective:
KAGAN: I’m not sure it quite matters to the person who’s in detention whether you’re in detention because they can’t find a country or whether they’re in detention because the immigration system is backed up.
So did Justice Sonia Sotomayor in this exchange with another lawyer for the government.
SOTOMAYOR: Most of these noncitizens are overwhelmingly nonlawyers, and for virtually all of them, English is not a first language. Most of them are impoverished. And without the ability, given that the only opportunity they have is administrative, and so they're unlikely to be represented by lawyers, how are these aliens, without the help of the courts and lawyers, supposed to protect their rights?
RAYNOR: Justice Sotomayor, the regulations provide for an interpreter if the non-citizen needs it. The non-citizen is entitled to be represented if he so chooses. And the non-citizen can submit information.
SOTOMAYOR: They are not entitled to lawyers. They have to go find one.
RAYNOR: It is correct that the government does not pay for lawyers in this context. But that -- that's obvious --
SOTOMAYOR: It's hard to see how impoverished people, unfamiliar with the workings of this government, of this country, are going to find lawyers.
The two sides battled over who decides whether a detainee gets a hearing for possible release. The aliens argue it should not be a mere immigration officer, it should be a judge, who can ensure the system honors due-process rights.
Justice Alito wondered about procedural matters such as the burden of proof— who has to prove what:
ALITO: Where the alien has illegally entered the country, reentered the country after removal, does the government have a clear and convincing evidence burden to show that this alien is not a flight risk?
ADAMS: Where that person has already been found by a DHS official …
…Lawyer Adams for the noncitizens arguing that yes, the government has the burden to show the alien is a flight risk or danger to the community. And that’s because his clients have bona fide claims of persecution in their home countries. Asylum officials said so.
And so it went, lawyer Gannon for the government pointing out this is only a small slice of people here. The success rate to avoid deportation after all is said and done isn’t very high. Most of them will not be allowed to remain in the United States.
Lawyer Raynor for the government ended his argument this way:
RAYNOR: They were already subject to a removal order. They illegally re-entered the United States. That is a statutory condition for reinstatement. You only get reinstatement if you illegally reenter the United States. And then, once back in the United States, they were apprehended again and ordered removed again. We know, by definition, those non-citizens pose a greater risk of flight based on their past conduct.
However the court decides, it will affect thousands of people in this country illegally or in detention. It will also affect American taxpayers, who after all, foot the bills. It’s the responsibility of the government to protect its citizens from harm that a detainee who intends to flee or commit more crimes.
Most of the justices seemed reluctant to do the job of Congress and rewrite the law. So even with an immigration system so backlogged and overwhelmed, the court seems most likely to leave the task with Congress, which has repeatedly demonstrated an unwillingness to take it up.
And that’s this week’s Legal Docket.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: Next up on The World and Everything in It: the Monday Moneybeat.
NICK EICHER, HOST: Time now for our regular conversation on business, markets, and the economy. Financial analyst and adviser David Bahnsen is here. Morning, David.
DAVID BAHNSEN, GUEST: Well, good morning, Nick. Good to be with you.
EICHER: Well the government gave us a new number on inflation, lots of superlatives attached to it. It’s the highest inflation in 40 years—going all the way back to 1982—the Consumer Price Index for January, the CPI, up 7-and-1/2 percent year on year versus January 2021. So that comes on the heels of a 7 percent number December to December and that was also a 40-year-high.
Now last time we talked about CPI, you said we really need to look at the bigger picture because the one-year comparison takes into account a real outlier year, the covid year. So should we throw out January 2021 as an inflation comparison?
BAHNSEN: Yeah, I don't think that one has to throw out the COVID year - I just think they have to include both the COVID deflationary year and then the reflationary recovery year at 21. And so when you take an annualized average over 24 months, instead of over 12 months, you still see price level that is higher than it was pre COVID. So it's not to deny the narrative of higher prices. But it is to put things in perspective. And what I see is a two year number that is about 4%. Core CPI three and a half percent, still above trend, still basically double the sub 2% inflation that they had been dealing with pre COVID. But when you see that used cars and trucks are 23% per year, for the last two years, you get a feel for how distorted some of the numbers are. Food prices are up, energy prices are up, consumer goods are up, but they're all up in a reasonably normal bandwidth. The used cars and trucks and new cars too, for that matter, are really distorting the numbers. So why does that matter? People do buy cars and trucks. It is inflation, when the prices are higher, right, right, right. The only reason I say matters is because it helps us evaluate if the inflation rate is going to continue going higher or begin to go lower. Because there is a type of inflation that can be very ‘sticky’. And that's actually literally an economic term. And then there's a type of inflation that can be less sticky. And I think that those of us analyzing this objectively look at car and truck numbers, and you start to get a better feel for where the inflation number is and what the causative factors are around it. But I think with a more nuanced view, one can get a better understanding of why the inflation rate is very likely to go lower later in the year. However, the energy factor, which is probably the most common data use is everybody - wealthy, poor, middle class, unemployed, employed - everybody uses energy. And I think that those numbers being higher, speak to very specific supply demand characteristics with oil and gas. And by the way with electricity use, and I think that that is something people should be very focused on.
EICHER: Is there anything President Biden can seriously do about this? Is there a policy button to push? And I ask because right as the CPI inflation number came out, the president was in Virginia touting Build Back Better as a solution.
BAHNSEN: Well, first of all, Build Back Better has nothing to do with inflation. It's it doesn't even exist anymore. It's dead and gone. build back better was largely a very, very expensive series of transfer payments. So there's no real serious argument that that was going to go help get ports reopened and truck drivers back to work. The policies from March through September of our federal government, in paying people more money to not work, exacerbated labor shortages, it further entrenched a cultural trend towards people leaving the workforce. All of those things are problematic here. Could he right now do much to reverse that? No, I think that in all seriousness, the number one thing he could do is on energy. I've talked about this with you, and I continue to beat this drum. You want greater form of production - it does not take away profitability in the supply demand. fulcrum, these companies can still make money at $50 oil, let alone the more realistic 65 to 70, they can get a down deal. But now that we're well above 90, I think that that is a price escalation that is controllable because of bad policy. And it is something that could be politically beneficial to the President if he were to reverse, but he won't. There is too strong of a pull from the other side of his political base that is driven with very ignorant environmental extremism. And so I think that that part he’s very well entrenched in. So I can't say that there's an easy thing for the White House to do. But I can certainly say that him going and delivering messages that miss the mark as to where we are and what we do from here is problematic.
EICHER: You mentioned truck drivers and I’ve wanted to know what you have to say about the trucker protest up in Canada, is that an economic story, do you think?
BAHNSEN: I mean, I don't have much to say about it economically, I think it has become more of a political and you could argue cultural story. And so we're watching that sort of play out. But primarily, this is more a standoff between Canadian political leadership, and a sort of revolt movement that is rooted in wanting more political freedom around vaccine. So I think it's a big story, but not so much something that's affecting daily economic data.
EICHER: All right, David Bahnsen, financial analyst and advisor, head of the financial planning firm The Bahnsen Group. He writes at DividendCafe.com, daily email newsletter on markets and the economy. David, thank you.
BAHNSEN: Thanks for having me, Nick.
NICK EICHER, HOST: Today is Monday, February 14th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Nick Eicher.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard. Next up: the WORLD History Book. Today, a chemist makes an enduring contribution to fashion; the first all-black basketball team takes to the floor; and a retail mogul crafts a sterling reputation. Here’s senior correspondent Katie Gaultney.
CLIP: Don’t you just love it?/ What?/ Tiffany’s!
KATIE GAULTNEY, SENIOR CORRESPONDENT: Breakfast at Tiffany’s propelled the high-end boutique to legendary status.
SONG: Nocturne, Op. 27 no. 2, Chopin
But well over a century before Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard’s cinematic visit, founder Charles Lewis Tiffany opened a humble stationery and gift shop in New York City. This week marks the anniversaries of Tiffany’s birth and death.
Born on February 15th, 1812—210 years ago—Tiffany set out as a young man to open that gift shop in the Big Apple. The store made less than $5 in its first few days of business, but over time, its success grew along with its product offerings. Tiffany began selling glassware, porcelain, cutlery, clocks, and, of course, jewelry.
A skilled businessman, Tiffany took advantage of political upheaval in Europe in the mid-1800s, buying up diamonds at a steep discount. The successful sale of those stones in the years that followed allowed the jewelry titan to open storefronts in Paris and London, and he upgraded his New York store to a Fifth Avenue location. At the onset of the American Civil War, he pivoted, hammering out weapons instead of jewelry.
SONG: “Moon River,” from Breakfast at Tiffany’s
He and his wife, Harriet, had two daughters and four sons—one of whom became a glass artist and pioneered the colorful “Tiffany lamp.”
The family patriarch died of pneumonia on February 18th, 1902—just three days after his 90th birthday. At the time, his company was worth $2 million. In January 2021, luxury brand Louis Vuitton’s parent company purchased Tiffany & Co. for $15.8 billion.
And from selling baubles to sinking baskets.
Today, black players make up about 75 percent of the NBA. But, it hasn’t always been so. Here’s Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in a 2011 documentary, On the Shoulders of Giants.
ABDUL-JABBAR: I find it really hard to believe that NBA players today are not aware of the fact that the NBA, when it started, was segregated.
That didn’t stop an all-black, black-owned team from forming on February 13th, 1923—99 years ago.
MUSIC: Roaring 20s music
In the early 20th century, New York’s Harlem became a destination for black Americans and immigrants. Bob Douglas had arrived in Harlem from the British West Indies. He created and coached the New York Renaissance basketball team. Douglas negotiated with a fellow Caribbean immigrant to let the team play at the Renaissance Casino and Ballroom in exchange for naming rights. A dance followed every game. When they weren’t playing at the Renaissance, they barnstormed, traveling the country to play any team who would sell tickets and host them.
Douglas led the “Rens” over the next 16 years to a dominating record of 2,318 wins and 381 losses. The team routinely beat the all-white national champion teams like the Original Celtics and the Oshkosh All Stars.
At the time, black teams could compete for so-called "colored" championships. Every now and then, as a novelty and a money-grab, promoters would organize black team-versus-white team contests.
The high salaries and prize money resided with other national championships, though, so black players faced limited income potential. Charles Barkley reflected on how the sport has changed.
BARKLEY: These young guys think they’ll make $20 million because they can play. They were just born at the right time.
The team disbanded right before the 1949-1950 NBA season, when that league finally desegregated. In 1963, the Basketball Hall of Fame collectively inducted the New York Renaissance team. Six individual players are also Hall of Famers, as is founder and coach Bob Douglas.
And for our last entry, would it be too much of a stretch to talk about nylon?
Eighty-five years ago, on February 16th, 1937, Wallace Carothers was a chemist at the DuPont company when he received a U.S. patent for the textile.
ANNOUNCER: By a miracle of modern science, such commonplace things as coal, water, and air have been transformed into threads more elastic than silk!
Dupont marketed the invention aggressively, calling it the "first man-made organic textile fiber,” "as strong as steel, as fine as the spider's web." The company supplied nylon thread to women's stocking manufacturers.
ANNOUNCER: Stockings are made on the knitting machines in a hosiery mill. See how the nylon threads move in and out and back and forth among the needles.
And as soon as the product came to market in 1940, there was a run on the hosiery—which is better than a run in the hosiery. Nylon stockings flew off shelves at $1.15 a pair, selling out halfway through the first day.
DuPoint managed to snag 30 percent of the hosiery market just about the same time as the dawn of World War II in the United States.
ANNOUNCER: These young men know that they can depend on their parachutes. Only the highest grade of silk or nylon is used.
Wartime needs prompted the company to turn from ladies fashion to parachutes, cords and ropes, shoelaces, hammocks, and other useful items.
Today, beyond hosiery, nylon has had a good run. In combination with other fibers, it has loads of applications, from carpets, guitar strings, wedding gowns, tennis shoes, luggage, and even surgical sutures.
That’s this week’s History Book. I’m Katie Gaultney.
NICK EICHER, HOST: Tomorrow: robotic pets. We’re not talking about toys here. These are devices bringing comfort to the elderly.
And, tracking vaccine exemptions. We’ll tell you why a new government list has religious liberty advocates worried.
That and more tomorrow.
I’m Nick Eicher.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard.
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