Posts Tagged ‘war


War and peace in a democracy

Cross-posted at The People’s View

Even if you were stuffing yourself full of the first weekend of college football, by now you know that President Barack Obama conducted one of the most important Rose Garden addresses in the history of the modern Presidency.

Taking the baton from his Secretary of State John Kerry, he again laid out, in forceful, passionate language, the situation as it was in Syria. He explained that the intelligence community had concluded with great certainty that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical attacks in contested areas of Damascus the week before. He passionately argued that American values and national interest dictated that Assad’s regime be punished militarily for the use of those chemical weapons against civilians. He stated that the military had assets in place and was ready to go at any time.

And then he did something no modern president had done. Even though he believed he had the authority to act, he knew that this was a divisive issue, and that the people’s representatives had to join in the decision. He called for Congress to debate and vote on a resolution granting him specific authority to militarily strike Assad for violating international treaties banning the use of chemical weaponry, some of the oldest weapons conventions in international law. He had heard the rumblings from Congress saying that he had to seek approval before any strike, and agreed.

But why did he agree? This is where he pivots beyond what all the pundits and talking heads expected. Just before declaring that he would seek Congressional approval, he reiterated that he believed that he had the authority to conduct the attacks with or without Congressional approval. But such an action, in a region of the world where such action could quickly spiral out of control, needed more than just Barack Obama’s say-so as Commander in Chief. Syria is not Libya. In the Libyan crisis, the President had a UN resolution with which to work. As a signatory to the UN charter, all member nations had a duty to enforce Security Council resolutions. That was all the authorization he needed.

Continue reading ‘War and peace in a democracy’


News Of The Day


VP Biden swears in Samantha Power as U.S. Ambassador to the UN today at the White House


Steve Benen: And Then There Were 40

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) told reporters yesterday that President Obama and congressional Democrats are “in denial.” Yeah, denial’s just awful, isn’t it? Capping a legislative work period more noted for what it failed to pass than for what it completed, the House voted for the 40th time on Friday to repeal President Barack Obama’s health care reform law before heading home for a five week recess.

The GOP-controlled House voted to approve a measure to prevent the IRS from enforcing “Obamacare” in a 232-185 vote. The legislation faces virtually no chance of advancing in the Senate, which is controlled by Democrats. How many House Republicans voted for repeal? All of them who were on the Hill this morning. If we include the Senate, the total number of votes held by congressional Republicans to repeal all or part of the federal health care law is 68. We’re talking about a group of folks who are very slow learners.

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Andrew Cray: New Federal Legislation Introduced To Protect Homeless LGBT Youth

Although they comprise only 5 to 7 percent of all youth in America, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth make up an average of 40 percent of all homeless youth in cities across the United States. These youth face a high risk of rejection and abuse in their homes, in their schools, and on the streets. For LGBT children and young adults left without safe homes, life on the street is dangerous, and the future may seem bleak.

But Thursday, Representatives Gwen Moore (D-WI) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) introduced legislation that would offer hope for LGBT youth and the providers charged with serving them. If passed, the Runaway and Homeless Youth Inclusion Act would amend the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act to prohibit discrimination against homeless youth based on sexual orientation or gender identity in the programs intended to offer them stability and shelter, and would promote data collection processes to help policymakers better understand LGBT youth homelessness.

The Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (RHYA) supports federally-funded programs for homeless youth, including street outreach, shelters and drop-in centers, and transitional living programs.

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The Democratic Party and the Republican Party



Igor Volsky: New ObamaCare Rule Throws Lifeline To Federal Employees

Congressional lawmakers and their staff will be able to afford health care coverage this fall when they begin enrolling in the exchanges established under the Affordable Care Act. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is expected to rule that the federal government can continue contributing to the cost of health care plans purchased through an exchange, putting to end months of intense behind-the-scenes lobbying from members of both parties which culminated in President Obama assuring Democrats that he is personally involved in the issue.

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Who is this guy?! ;)








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