Congress Shall Have Power To . . . Declare War


Rand Paul to John Kerry: If it was wrong to bomb Cambodia without Congress’s approval, why is bombing Libya without approval okay?

Excellent, and not just the Libya stuff. Stick with it for Paul’s questions about how smart it is to be arming the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt when Morsi is already wheezing about Jews controlling the media in official diplomatic sessions with the U.S. If you’re wondering why it fell to Paul to ask this question instead of any of the more senior senators who preceded him, it’s because the Senate was perfectly happy to have Obama act unilaterally on Libya. The Iraq war authorization came back to haunt many of them; no one knew at the time how messy Libya might get. O did them a favor, left and right, by freeing them from a tough vote. But Kerry can’t say that so instead he squirms through a few minutes of how the two bombing campaigns are different because they just are. Frankly, Paul let him off easy. You could, if you chose, defend U.S. actions in Cambodia as a cross-border extension of the war already being fought in Vietnam. No such defense for Libya; if anything, the Libya war cut against the AUMF against Al Qaeda that was passed after 9/11 because, as we’ve recently learned, eliminating Qadaffi was actually a boon to jihadist groups like AQ.


We have a president, not a king. Article One, section 8 of the United States Constitution gives Congress the exclusive power to declare war, something they haven’t done since 1941 even though we have been involved in at least five wars since then.

While it is true that Congress has effectively delegated some of that authority under the War Powers Act, nowadays presidents don’t even bother following it’s lax provisions. They just do what they want and Congress lets them.

I’m old enough to remember when Democrats cared about illegal wars. What a quaint notion that is today.


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I support same-sex marriage and voted against Proposition 8 but I will no longer use Firefox nor any other Mozilla products. Tolerance is a two-way street.
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80 Responses to Congress Shall Have Power To . . . Declare War

  1. angienc (D) says:

    OT — sorry but this is a BFD

    The DC Appellate Court just handed down a decision declaring Obama’s bullshit “recess appointments” to the NLRB unconsitutional.

    “[T]he President made his three appointments to the Board on January 4, 2012, after Congress began a new session on January 3 and while that new session continued,” the court wrote in its decision. “Considering the text, history, and structure of the Constitution, these appointments were invalid from their inception.”

    Full decision here:

    http://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/opinions.nsf/D13E4C2A7B33B57A85257AFE00556B29/$file/12-1115-1417096.pdf

    Boils down: all of the NLRB “decisions” made after these b.s. appointments just got sent to the circular file.

    I expect Boeing’s attorneys are popping champagne bottles as they prepare the petitions.

    • angienc (D) says:

      PS — if this decision stands, POTUS will no longer have recess appointment powers *except* for brief time when Congress finishes business at end of year (i.e., no more intrasession appointments as Obama has been doing, when Congress is out of town for a few days or weeks).

    • myiq2xu says:

      I was just about to post that:

      Appeals court unanimously rebukes Obama on recess appointments

      It took more than a year, but a federal appeals court has finally caught up with Barack Obama and his unilateral declaration of a Congressional recess. In an embarrassing rebuke, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Obama violated the Constitution by making appointments while the Senate considered itself in session:

      President Barack Obama violated the Constitution when he bypassed the Senate to fill vacancies on a labor relations panel, a federal appeals court panel ruled Friday.

      A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit said that Obama did not have the power to make three recess appointments last year to the National Labor Relations Board.

      • angienc (D) says:

        This is the best part of the decision:

        Recent presidents are doing no more than interpreting the Constitution. While we recognize that all branches of government must of necessity exercise their understanding of the Constitution in order to perform their duties faithfully thereto, ultimately it is our role to discern the authoritative meaning of the supreme law.”

        Talk about bench-slapping! LOL!

    • myiq2xu says:

      Wholly Shit!:

      Not only that, but the court also ruled that the vacancies had to arise during The Recess as well (page 23):

      To avoid government paralysis in those long periods when senators were unable to provide advice and consent, the Framers established the “auxiliary” method of recess appointments. But they put strict limits on this method, requiring that the relevant vacancies happen during “the Recess.” It would have made little sense to extend this “auxiliary” method to any intrasession break, for the “auxiliary” ability to make recess appointments could easily swallow the “general” route of advice and consent. The President could simply wait until the Senate took an intrasession break to make appointments, and thus “advice and consent” would hardly restrain his appointment choices at all.

      Wow. If this stands, the recess appointment will all but disappear — and future Presidents can thank Obama for screwing that up for them.

      • angienc (D) says:

        Well, there’s a good possibility it *will* not stand, of course — at least in part.
        The court could have ruled specifically on just these appointments/Obama’s bullshit of *pretending* Congress was in recess when, in fact, it wasn’t (yes, the previous session had recessed, but the new session had started when he made these appointments so Congress was NOT in “recess”) without going all into this.
        But for now, it’s got to be causing Dear Leader to have a bad day for the court’s “sheer audacity” to think they can do a better job interpreting the Constitution than he can, and I’ll take what I can get.

      • DandyTiger says:

        Sweet. I think that would be great change, even if with a president I like. I like balance of power, even if it’s annoying.

        • angienc (D) says:

          Funny how for the first 150 years no POTUS used recess appointments, but the last 3 made HUNDREDS.

          Of course, Clinton & GWB never tried to pull the bullshit Obama did with these particular “recess” appointments while Congress was actually in session.

  2. HELENK says:

    since the UN is going to investigate the killings by drones. Were those killings ever oked by congress? they go into to a country that we are not at war with and kill targets picked by backtrack. Has that ever been questioned?

    • Mary says:

      Anybody who had “standing” is already dead.

      It’s Congress who should question the policy—they haven’t done it.

  3. angienc (D) says:

    The vile progs have been out in full force across the intertubez Palinizing Rand Paul since yesterday.

    Coincidence?

  4. HELENK says:

    http://weaselzippers.us/2013/01/25/tahrir-square-protesters-have-message-for-the-united-states/

    here is one of the first problems for Kerry. Don’t think a lot of people in Egypt are happy with backtrack backing the muslim brotherhood

    • angienc (D) says:

      With its circulation problems, he could probably buy it with the loose change he finds in his sofa.

    • Constance says:

      Love it! Seriously the Republicans need to slap down the Liberal Corporate Media. This would be a nice step and they should put together a push to force the cable companies to offer the OPTION of a la carte channels, Since no one would sign up for MSNBC and other similar libtard channels they would go out of business when forced into a free market. Republicans need to get the upper hand on media. Giving people consumer rights and a savings on their cable bills could go a long way towards doing that.

  5. piper says:

    My husband fought in the Vietnam debacle while Kerry and his good pal, Jane, went to Hanoi and denounced the troops who were drafted. They have never apologized for their actions and words so thumbs down for both. Just like Bill Ayers – family money saved them from serving in prisons for their actions.

  6. HELENK says:

    http://mrctv.org/videos/should-we-change-constitution-so-obama-can-run-third-term

    I am not sure if I feel sad or just scared when watching this. How do combat such ignorance ?

    • Yup. We get charged every month for the damn smart meters- though we don’t have one and don’t want one. Why the hell would we need smart (california) meters here in PA? They want to be able to brown out our power because why?

      • As long as I am paying my damn electric bill- who the hell needs to know when I turn my lights on and off? They need to know when I run the washer and dryer or the TV?
        Why?

      • votermom says:

        We keep saying no to PECO about those smart meters – no way do I want them turning my AC off in the summer!
        I guess I’m lucky they havents ent the cops after us. :shock:

    • Ok I have a HUGE question. The article says this-

      “The city has always had and maintains the right to access our equipment, and today we were simply exercising that right,” City Manager Doug Kreiger told the Chicago Tribune, which reported Wednesday’s events.

      The CITY? owns the power and the equipment? No electric company?
      Why would the city own the equipment? Water maybe. Sewer mayber. But the electric?
      That is a bit, uhm, scary.
      Part of the reason we moved out here was the private well and septic. The local city and townships were increasing rates like crazy. Just what you don’t need, the local govt controlling your access to water.

      • yttik says:

        Our city has just taken over our electricity, too. The voters voted for it. People claimed a big scary corporation was greedy and evil, so the government would do a better job. What the morons didn’t consider is how generous that big corporation was, how many charities they supported, the entire energy assistance program for low income people, as well as being so big they could provide cheaper electricity. Since the takeover, rates have skyrocketted, there is no help for low income people, and local charities are suffering.

    • DandyTiger says:

      There are studies that show the really high power in their wireless equipment can cause health problems. So in addition to them knowing everything about what things you use in your house at what time, the damn thing can hurt you too. Fucking big brother.

      • Somebody says:

        Well I now have one of those smart meters. They just went down the street last week and put them on all the houses. We didn’t know anything about it and until that day had never even heard of a smart meter.

        These things are creepy, PMM is right they can tell when you’re watching TV or doing laundry or what have you. They can turn your power off and on with the flip of a switch at the office. I know it’s only a matter of time before they start charging us for peak hour usage.

        I also read where quite a few people see their electric bills jump once these smart meters are put in……..I’m praying that doesn’t happen with us. As far as the health concerns, given the location of my meter I’m not too concerned about that part…….it’d have to travel through the garage, through the laundry room and then it would land in the formal LR/DR part of the house we don’t use very often so I think that part is probably fine.

        PMM I hear you, I would seriously like to be on a well and septic and if possible I’d like to be completely off the grid.

  7. SHV says:

    oops…

    “Pentagon laying off 46,000 staff”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-21205323

  8. HELENK says:

    http://weaselzippers.us/2013/01/25/gun-running-ag-eric-holder-starts-implementing-obamas-gun-control-executive-orders/

    fast and furious holder’s dept of crime starts implementing backtrack’s gun control executive orders

  9. angienc (D) says:

    I hate to link to TDB but Mamet has a great article on gun control & tyranny up — don’t read the comments though, the stupid there is strong. (h/t AoS).

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2013/01/28/gun-laws-and-the-fools-of-chelm-by-david-mamet.html

  10. foxyladi14 says:

    He is a Dicktater!!! :evil:

  11. swanspirit says:

    Ot ( besides the delicious feeling I get considering The Donald buying the NYT teehee) and a shameless plug
    The Station CYGNUS RADIO FINALLY has a twitter account and the listen link is on the front page

    Hey everyone welcome to the station, check out our schedules and listen up—

  12. DandyTiger says:

    Hmm, maybe Tina Turner has the right idea. Switzerland anyone?

    • DeniseVB says:

      There he goes again ;) Wonder if Obama ever performed an act of kindness that benefited anyone other than himself ?

      • Yeah, but this is getting to the point with Booker where you wonder how he finds himself so close to calamity all the freakin’ time. I suspect it’s theater fueled by a police scanner in his car and office.

        • votermom says:

          It absolutely is part of his campaign strategy.

        • DeniseVB says:

          Well darn Lola, you always make me think, Booker is my last link to the Democratic Party. ;)

          At least this political theater is for the good, Obama just stews about his opponents and critics. Then slices and dices them with lies to destroy them.

          Cory has political heart. I miss that in my Dems.

  13. HELENK says:

    just heard this on the TV

    obscure Fla law lets squatters take over abandoned houses.
    One 23 year old guy moved into a multi million dollar mansion and there is nothing the cops can do to remove him. All he has to do is pay the taxes on the house for the next 7 years and the house is his.

    Neighbors are not happy.

    One part of me says good for him. The rational part says somewhere along the line the depositors of the bank that owns the mortgage will wind up paying for this

    • myiq2xu says:

      It’s called “adverse possession” and it exists in most or all states.

    • DandyTiger says:

      Wonder how they define abandoned. If it’s a vacation house the owners use only once a year, can it be abandoned?

      • angienc (D) says:

        It can’t be that — the question on abandonment of real property has to turn on whether the title holder is acting as the “owner” of the house. For example, if the title holder keeps the city/state taxes current on the property, it doesn’t matter if he/she is physically present in the house, he is acting as an owner.

        • lildoggy4u says:

          Anybody can do this if the owner is aware that you are squatting and doesn’t object for the term of 7 years but you DO have to be paying the taxes on the property. I tried to squat on the beach in the Keys once but I couldn’t find anybody to pay the taxes to.

        • angienc (D) says:

          What you are describing — with the squatter paying the taxes on the property — is an act of “ownership” — hence my writing that if the title holder ACTS AS AN OWNER then the fact that he isn’t ever physically at the property isn’t enough to deem the property “abandoned” specifically in answer to Dandy’s question.
          So if you’re trying to make a point that contradicts what I wrote here, I’m missing it.

        • angienc (D) says:

          PS — you pay the “taxes to” the county tax assessor/treasurer for the county where the property is situated.

          That is kind of common knowledge; funny you couldn’t figure that out.

        • myiq2xu says:

          Aren’t beaches in Florida considered public property?

        • Somebody says:

          I think lildoggy’s comment about the beach was tongue in cheek.

          To answer your question Myiq, yes all the beaches in Florida are public property…….some more public than others. Technically they’re all public, but one can only access them via a public access point and there are areas where there is no public access for miles.

  14. HELENK says:

    STARTING SUNDAY

    stores can charge a 4% charge if you use a credit card to pay for your purchase.

    debit cards OK

    credit cards 4% charge

  15. HELENK says:

    http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2013/01/24/san-francisco-officials-prepare-for-super-bowl-hope-to-avoid-violence/

    this guy is not the sharpest tool in the shed is he???
    SF mayor wants bars to NOT sell alcohol on Super Bowl Sunday.
    Is he volunteering to makeup the business losses??

  16. myiq2xu says:
  17. yttik says:

    It’s interesting to read about the ruling regarding recess appointments. It’s about time our constitution finally got some attention!

    Also in the constitution, only congress shall have the power to declare war. They haven’t done so since WW2 and IMO, it’s been a disaster. We’ve had a series of unpopular, controversial, policing actions that have cost a lot of money and a lot of American lives. Vietnam, Korea, Gulf war 1,2,3, etc, etc. Our founders were pretty amazing, they knew that if 435 congresscritters were willing to stand up and declare war, the country probably needed to go to war. That’s what accountability and taking responsibility is all about. Today we have a bunch of wimpy assed congresscritters who authorize the President to take policing action, (but only because they were tricked, manipulated, didn’t know what they were voting on, etc.) Because of this, America, our troops, their families, have really suffered. The last time we had a war the entire country rallied around was the last time congress exercised their responsibility. Simply handing the issue over to the president is passing the buck.

  18. HELENK says:

    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/articles/427974/20130125/american-idol-racism-row-9-black-former.htm

    9 former contestants of American Idol are suing Fox for racism. Because they were made to audition and then disqualified due to their criminal records

  19. HELENK says:

    http://weaselzippers.us/2013/01/25/shocker-richard-trumka-afl-cio-president-doesnt-like-that-obamas-pro-union-recess-appointments-were-found-unconstitutional/

    richard trumka is all weeweeed up because court found backtrack’s recess appointments were unconstitutional.

    bummer

  20. HELENK says:

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/01/25/sandy-victims-left-out-in-cold-during-arctic-blast/

    victims from Sandy still living in tents. nobody seems to be talking about this .

  21. HELENK says:

    myiq
    if you do a post on the court ruling on backtrack’s appointments
    this might be a good picture to use

    http://thelookingspoon.com/

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