ON THE WAR POWERS ACT: A DIALOGUE WITH A FRIEND
by Steve Alexander on Sunday, June 19, 2011 at 2:15pm.
From my friend Ed (Ed's from CT, and has become an awesome friend who is not afraid to disagree very agreeably, is also a Weather Fan from CT and keeps the power on in bad weather as a utility employee) via FB Private Message Thursday June 16th, 2011:
ED:I am soooooo tempted to raze you answering the poll that right now Obama is the best Republican in the field!!!!! after the notion that the war powers act do not apply in the case of Libya.
I personally think they do,but that is another thing.
My question to you ,though,since I was not really paying attention at the time is this: Did Reagan go to Congress before Grenada or Bush '41 before Panama? That would go a long way toward establishing precedent. I am hoping you were into politics enough during those days that you might have noticed.
Maybe sometimes I am too harsh on Obama but sometimes I feel very betrayed that I voted for him because I thought he really would "have the courage to stand up to special interests" like he said he would,but really doesn't seem to.
That brings me to the conclusion that if he is the one person I trusted and he wouldn't, then there really is no one that ever will,and that makes for a very sad vision of the future for the average working joe.
Sometime I need to write more about my thinking a few years ago that the American economy is in a bind it can not get out of and a lot of fighting will take place for those that have something to preserve it. I see a lot of it today in many places.again more on that another day.
I start 12 hour night shifts to night so may not be near the computer as much, but I will look at it from time to time.
Thanks for giving my mind an outlet. I know even when you do not agree you will listen...
To which I replied on Fathers Day, June 19th, 2011:
UNABASHED LEFT: OK, here goes Ed. I did NOT want to short shrift your comments about the War Powers Act and Libya. I personally believe that the War Powers Act is unconstitutional in and of itself. It's simple. The Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land and amending the Constitution or changing any aspect of it requires 2/3's vote in Congress and approval by 2/3's of the States' legislatures. Article 1, section 8 reads as it gives EXCLUSIVE power to CONGRESS, without Presidential involvement whatsoever: "Clause 11: To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water." The War Powers Act, passed in 1973 over Nixon's veto grants specific war powers to the President, via a 2/3 vote, because a veto had to be overridden, however a Constitutional Amendment was never proposed and NO State Legislature has ever had the right to vote on changing this usurpation of power by the politicians in DC, both in Congress and in the White House. Every president, Dem or Rep winds up wanting to exercise more power than allotted constitutionally. Wikipedia describes the War Powers Act: "The War Powers Act requires the President to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with a further 30 day withdrawal period, without an authorization of the use of military force or a declaration of war. The resolution was passed by two-thirds of Congress, overriding a presidential veto." Clearly in violation of the Constitution's reservation of all dispatches of U.S. troops and military hardware to Congress, and Congress alone. As Commander in Chief the President's job is to implement the declarations of war that ORIGINATE with the US Congress. I agree that the President needs to have some flexibility beyond that granted by the Constitution, but the only legal way to do it is to amend the constitution. Anything else is actually treason, to be honest, it's just been 'acceptable' since the last officially declared war in 1941. We've only declared war 5 times in US history, the 1812 war against Britain, WWI, the Mexican/American War, and Japan and Germany in WWII. As far as George HW Bush, his use of the War Powers Act was summarized by Wikipedia as follows: "Congress invoked the War Powers Act in the Multinational Force in Lebanon Act(P.L. 98-119), which authorized the Marines to remain in Lebanon for 18 months. In addition, P.L. 102-1, authorizing the use of U.S. armed forces concerning the Iraqi aggression against Kuwait, stated that it constituted specific statutory authorization within the meaning of the War Powers Act." His son, Dubya, on the other hand violated US Treaties by launching his Iraq misadventure in violation of UN Resolutions, and, like it or not, we have treaties in place compelling us to abide by UN Resolutions, and international Treaties, which necessitate 2/3 votes in the US Senate, supersede "Acts" by Congress, so the entire Iraq mess since 2002 has been illegal. Regarding Ray-Gun and HW in Panama and in Grenada, I think it's all irrelevant, with regards to whether these usurpers sought Congressional approval after the fact, and illegal as well as treasonous in actuality. In addition the Dubya administration provided false info to Congress on the presence of weapons of mass destruction to Congress. I oppose American militarism. Politics is the art of compromise. Barack Obama and the Democratic Party itself, are a compromise for me my friend. Thanks for the comment, and I hope for your response, I value your opinions, indeed! Happy Dad's day! Peace pleeeeeze, Steve