Showing posts with label Constitutional issues. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Constitutional issues. Show all posts

Monday, June 30, 2014

Is subsidized sex a human right?

By Donald Sensing

Here is ABCNews' report on the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision that Hobby Lobby, and by extension companies like it, do may decline to provide birth-control insurance coverage on religious grounds.


ABC US News | ABC Sports News

The short course:

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that some corporations can hold religious objections that allow them to opt out of the new health law requirement that they cover contraceptives for women.

The justices' 5-4 decision is the first time that the high court has ruled that profit-seeking businesses can hold religious views under federal law. And it means the Obama administration must search for a different way of providing free contraception to women who are covered under objecting companies' health insurance plans.
However, the outcry of the Left is my point here. Take for example what my colleague Julie N.  wrote today on an FB page: "And [this is] a landmark decision against the health and rights of women."

Exactly what is the health issue here and what is the human right being abrogated?

What ISTM she and her ideological allies really mean is that they think that women nave an inherent right to taxpayer- and or employer-subsidized sex, including abortions in case of pregnancy. And they do not care that millions of Americans see abortion on demand as indistinguishable from legalized homicide. (Provision of abortifacients was the key issue in the Hobby Lobby case.)

The Left long, long ago reached the point where they saw no rational limits on anyone's sexual activity, but only relatively recently have they decided that other people should pay for it. It's part of the continuing infantilization of American adults.

Update: Finally, someone admits that birth control is indeed about sex.
Finally! Someone admitted birth control is about sex: a columnist for The Guardian US, Jessica Valenti argued, “Women like sex. Stop making 'health' excuses for why we use birth control.” A founder of Femninistg.com, Valenti also serves on the board of NARAL Pro-Choice America.  
For her piece, Valenti described contraception as “arguably the most important laboratory discovery for women of all time” that women use for the sake of “hot, sweaty, fantastic, fun, non-procreative sex.” “That doesn't make us ‘sluts,’” she continued, “it makes us human.” In a shallow, debased sort of way.
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Thursday, June 26, 2014

How many divisions has the Supreme Court?

By Donald Sensing

Supreme Court Rules Obama’s Recess Appointments Violated the Constitution

Today, in a blow to the Obama administration, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 9-0 that President Obama’s “recess appointments” to the National Labor Relations Board violated the Constitution in NLRB v. Noel Canning.

Art. II, section 2, clause 3 of the Constitution allows the president to “fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate.” On Jan. 4, 2012,President Obama made several recess appointments even though the Senate had been convening “pro forma” sessions every three days. These appointments were challenged in a labor dispute before the NLRB, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit  struck them down as unconstitutional.
I wrote ten months ago why the law and federal-court rulings do not matter to Obama. And I make the same point now that I made then:
Does this ruling bind this president from doing what he wants to do? Of course not. No one in America has both the power and the determination to hinder Obama from doing whatever he wants.

As I was discussing Obama's totalist ideology this week with a relative, I pointed out that Obama could ask a parallel question of the federal courts that Josef Stalin asked when it was suggested to him that he should treat Russian Catholics better to gain favor with the Pope as the Nazi threat loomed: "The Pope!" Stalin exclaimed. "How many divisions has he got?"

And so with President Obama and federal courts' rulings: they have no means of enforcing their rulings. As any intemperate two-year old knows, you can do anything you want until someone compels you to stop. And so Obama can order whatever he wishes until he is compelled to stop.

The courts lacks the means of such compulsion. That leaves the Congress to rein in the executive. (Please excuse me while I erupt in peals of derisive laughter.)
What has changed since then? Nothing.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Constitutional problems with the Bergdahl-Taliban swap

By Donald Sensing

Selling out the Constitution for a bad prisoner swap

Section 1028 of the 2013 defense appropriations law prohibits any funds to be used “to transfer any individual detained at Guantanamo to the custody or control of any other foreign country” unless the secretary of defense certifies to Congress, “not later than 30 days before the transfer,” that the receiving country will detain the individual appropriately and “has taken or agreed to take such actions as the Secretary of Defense determines are necessary to ensure that the individual cannot engage or re-engage in any terrorist activity.”
This the administration did not do. The law does confer upon the executive authority to make such a release outside these time limits if the transfer “is in the national security interests of the United States.” However, the administration has not made such a claim.

As well,
... the administration suggests that Section 1028 is itself unconstitutional. When signing the law, Mr. Obama issued a statement opposing Section 1028 because he believed it infringed on his power as commander in chief.
That is not an empty argument and a case can probably be made for it. But I think it fails here for two reasons. As the linked article points out, "the president’s power over the military is not exclusive."
Equally important, Congress has the exclusive power of the purse. In passing the 2013 defense appropriations bill, this is exactly what Congress did: It forbade any tax dollars from being used to free Gitmo detainees without prior notice and certification to Congress.
Congress is delegated substantial powers over military matters in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution, where the delegated powers of Congress are delineated. The power specifically under scrutiny here is this:
To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;
Clearly (to me anyway), the statute that sets conditions upon which Gitmo detainees - who are certainly examples of "Captures" no matter how else you define their status - may be released is firmly within the delegated powers of the Congress.

Presumably, the president could slip through the statute's loophole by explaining exactly how the immediate release, outside statutory time limits, was in the national interest. If he did then the Constitutional violation would be obviated as well, since it was Congress that created the loophole. But he has not done so nor do I think he will try.

For I explained last August why the law does not matter to Obama.

Update: Always good to see that The Volokh Conspiracy takes the same tack as I do:
The five Taliban prisoners were in military custody at Guantanamo. Regulations governing the treatment and release of prisoners by the military are at the very core of Congress’ power under this clause. 
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Saturday, May 3, 2014

These are not the emails you are looking for

By Donald Sensing

Jonah Goldberg makes a humorous, though solid, connection between White House Jay Carney's press conference style and the classic scene from the first Star Wars movie released:



Goldberg:

Carney: These are not the droids you’re looking for, idiots. 
Ed Henry, Fox News: But Jay, these look exactly like the droids we’ve been looking for. In fact, the serial numbers match. 
Carney: Ed, I understand your network is deeply invested in finding a story here. But the simple fact is that these are in no way the droids you’re looking for. Move along. 
Henry: One last follow-up, Jay. The golden droid on the right just said, “Excuse me sirs, but we are in fact exactly the droids you’ve been looking for. Thank goodness you found us.” ...
There is an enormous amount of theorizing about what the “real story” behind Benghazi really is. To me it’s always been obvious. The White House was caught off guard — for reasons stemming both from ideology and incompetence — on September 11, 2012. As they have after virtually every other (jihadist) terrorist attack on Americans, they acted as if it had absolutely nothing to do with them. As with the Times Square bomber, the Fort Hood shooter, and other Islamist assaults, there’s always some other reason for the bloodshed, some attempt to claim, at least for a while, that this was an “isolated incident” with no broader implications for the War on Terror or Obama’s foreign policy. Admittedly, even this White House understood that spinning the Benghazi attack as an isolated incident wasn’t going to work (such intense spinning could risk irreparable scrotal torsion). So they went with the story about the video. ...

Given that the Benghazi attack came during the thick of the presidential election, it’s no surprise that the White House’s political and ideological instincts overpowered everything else.
So the White House's recently-released emails reveal their their principal concern about the attack, coming less than two months before the presidential election, was to show that the attack and the four American deaths were the result of a Youtube video, not anything having to do with American policy.

And now, as Obama's former minister used to say, "The chickens are coming home to roost." A US House select committee will soon be formed to probe deeply into the Benghazi debacle.

Select committees are ...
... created by a resolution that outlines its duties and powers and the procedures for appointing members. Select and special committees are often investigative in nature, rather than legislative... .
Select committees have been formed for varying reasons since the beginning of the republic. It was conclusions reached by a Senate committee regarding the Watergate cover-up that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon in 1974. Had he not resigned, Nixon certainly would have been impeached by the House and convicted by the Senate - not mainly for the criminal break-in of his minions at the Watergate Hotel, but for the lying and cover-up that followed that reached all the way into the Oval Office itself.

The key question asked by the Senate's special committee was that of Howard Baker (R-Tenn.).
 During the committee's proceedings, he captured the essence of the committee's inquiry with a succinct question that became a Washington mantra: "What did the president know, and when did he know it?"
 It frankly is impossible that any Democrat of the House select committee would ask that question in even the most ambiguous way of any witness. Nonetheless, it must be asked and must be answered.

And it will be asked. But it won't be answered.

But let's start with an even more basic question: When the attack was occurring, over a period of several hours, what was the president doing and what was his involvement in the decision process?

Answer: In the evening, Washington time, when the attack was starting in Benghazi, the president was just beginning "debate prep" for an upcoming debate with Mitt Romney. According to "the former Communications Director for the National Security Council, Tommy Vietor," President Obama was never in the White House Situation Room during the entire event.

"What did the president know, and when did he know it?" is a question relating to the ridiculous spin doctoring after the attack concerning the source of the outright lie to the American people that the attack was actually a spontaneous "demonstration" out side the US consulate because of a Youtube video perceived to insult Islam. Multiple witnesses and sources in the CIA and State and Defense Departments have confirmed that they knew it was a preplanned al Qaeda attack almost at its inception.

But first things first. Four Americans died that night with no kind of rescue attempt being mounted - and the attack went on for hours. So the first relevant question is not about the cover-up, but about the president's involvement in shaping events that night: "Where was the president and what was he doing?"


Update: Andrew McCarthy:
We do know that the president was informed about the Benghazi siege only minutes after it began — because military officials, who have felt obliged to account for their actions, have reported telling him about it. We know, as The Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol notes, that “while Americans were under assault in Benghazi, the president found time for a non-urgent, politically useful, hour-long call to [Israeli] Prime Minister Netanyahu” — a call made because Obama was wooing Jewish voters unsettled by his notorious disdain for Netanyahu, and thus a call it was in his interest to publicize. We have been told, moreover, that about five hours after learning that Americans were under attack, Obama had a phone call with Secretary Clinton — immediately after which, even as Woods and Doherty were still fighting for their lives, Clinton put out a statement spinning the Benghazi violence as the product of an obscure anti-Muslim Internet video.
But this is all of a longstanding behavior of this administration, quite the usual pattern.

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Feds deploy snipers, arrest man for filming outside "First Amendment area"

By Donald Sensing

The federal government continues with its claim that it can comntrol your funadmental Constitutional rights based on where you exercise them and what federal officials are doing at the place. 

Feds deploy snipers, arrest man for filming outside First Amendment area

None of the family members on the road were armed, but 11 BLM vehicles each with two agents arrived and surrounded him as he began filming the cattle, Paul Joseph Watson said at Infowars.  
“They also had four snipers on the hill above us all trained on us. We were doing nothing besides filming the area,” Ryan added. 
Bundy also said federal agents told them they had no First Amendment rights except in the areas so marked. 
"The BLM has established two fenced areas near the City of Mesquite, that they have designated as free speech areas for members of the public to express their opinions," the Progress said.
You probably thought that the entire United States was a "First Amendment Zone." But that's only because you are obviously a right-wing, racist extremist in the pay of the Koch brothers.

Update: The inimitable Mark Steyn makes the obvious point after posting a photo of the actual, designated "First Amendment Area."


If an anonymous pen-pusher in the permanent bureaucracy can confine the Bill of Rights to tiny enclaves where it will be entirely ineffectual, then there is no Bill of Rights.
Which is exactly the objective.

More links:

The state's governor protests the "First Amendment Area" 
.....CBS's mild report is here
.....A more comprehensive report is here

And this:




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Monday, April 7, 2014

"Broke into the wrong rec room"

By Donald Sensing

"Family shoots and kills burglary suspect in Winter Haven"

Not "homeowner" shoots intruder. The whole family did.

Luis A. Pena went to check on that and found somebody rattling the french doors leading off a back porch area. He pulled out a gun and fired a shot trying to scare off the intruder but the burglar didn't stop.

The young man went back to the kitchen where his mother and father were, both armed. Police say Large continued to charge at the residents and   the three of them all shot at the intruder when they saw him. 

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Sunday, March 30, 2014

Hard to argue with this

By Donald Sensing

Kevin Williamson makes an excellent point about the manifold failings of today's Republican party, namely, "compared to what?"

... I am coming around to the view that I’d rather be disappointed by Republicans who periodically fail live up to their principles than have my country pillaged and hobbled by Democrats who consistently live up to theirs.
He claims that the Republicans may be soundly seen, at least sometimes, as the lesser of two evils, they are still lesser. And he may have a point, but I am far from convinced that a slow boat to liberty's destruction is any better, really, than a fast track, as I pointed out last year:
The problem is not that Republicans and Democrats are not different. They are. The problem is that they are different in ways that mean that neither party enhances personal freedom of individual Americans, and instead concentrates power and wealth in their own hands.
Because for both parties, government is not the problem, you are.

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

When cops are disarmed only the Army will have guns

By Donald Sensing

And that is bad. Kudos to Oklahoma sheriffs for doing this:

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Anti-gun nuts release map of all Texas gun owners

By Donald Sensing

When will it ever end?



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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tenth Amendment Victory in Tennessee

By Donald Sensing

This bill was passed unanimously by the Tennessee legislature today. A true bipartisan victory for the people!

Law Enforcement - As introduced, prohibits any state or local law enforcement officer from participating in a voluntary motor vehicle checkpoint conducted by a private company or research institute to collect a human sample from which DNA may be derived from consenting motorists stopped at the checkpoint for statistical studies or research. - Amends TCA Title 38, Chapter 8, Part 1.
Text here.

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Friday, February 21, 2014

"Diversity" is Conformity

By Donald Sensing

Attacking Diversity of Thought

Only in Leftist lala land could "diversity" intentionally exclude "thinking differently from the party line."

Welcome to 1984, people.


Update: Part of an assessment of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni,  "Education or Reputation: A Look at America’s Top-Ranked Liberal Arts Colleges:"
Our top-ranked liberal arts colleges have discouraged the free exchange of ideas and free inquiry. According to a study by the redoubtable Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, incorporated by ACTA into its report, all of the top liberal arts colleges seriously impair freedom of speech. Fourteen—including Carleton College, Colgate University, Middlebury College, and Wellesley College—have in place “at least one policy that clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech.” Several punish “offensive speech.” Some American college and universities have actually banished unfettered expression to designated “free speech zones”—a dodge reminiscent of how Russia marginalized protesters during the Winter Olympics.
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Dems: opposing their immigration policy equals pro-slavery

By Donald Sensing

Guest post by Dave Calder, via email 

Is there a link between slavery and current immigration policy?

The Department of Homeland Security wants its mid-level managers to think so.

On Jan 29th, DHS posted a solicitation on the Federal Business Opportunities FedBizOps.gov website requesting quotes for “Leadership Development Training based on the Battle of Gettysburg.” It’s an unusual battle to cull leadership tips from considering the notable leadership failures on both sides, from General Lee’s decision to make a stand culminating in his order for General Pickett’s ill-fated charge to the Union's General Meade failing to pursue the stunned Confederate Army.

Buried among the solicitation’s logistics requirements and instructions to draw leadership examples from the battle’s participants was this out of place, politicized paragraph:

The contractor shall conduct a comparison of states' rights and slavery in 1863 as related to today's immigration issues. The presentation must include a question and answer session for the participants.
 If the red flags don’t wave for you, here is a brief background: some of the most effective opposition to the present administration’s policies and power grabs has been based on the concept that states enjoy some sovereignty, or freedom from rule by the Federal Government; in other words, what the Old South used to call, “state’s rights.”

For example the Supreme Court struck down the portion of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) that required states to set up their own health exchanges. The court ruled that the Federal Government does not have the authority to require states to set up exchanges.

Transitioning to immigration: not too long ago, Arizona, frustrated with the federal government’s failure to enforce immigration law decided to do it for the Feds within their borders. The Feds sued and the Supreme Court ruled in part that state’s rights don’t extend that far, but Arizona still has the right to check immigration status while enforcing other laws.

Back to the Civil War. One of the justifications Southern states used to secede from the union was a concept of state’s rights. As wrong as slavery was, the South's insistence on the right to keep slaves was only reversed at the price of a bloody war and rectified legally by amending the Constitution. The concept that states had a legal right to allow slavery died with the 13th Amendment in 1865.

The Department of Homeland Security, however, wants a course to indoctrinate their managers to conflate still-existing state’s rights with the former Confederacy's holding of slaves. To do so is an attempt by DHS, and by extension the Obama administration, to marginalize legitimate opposition to their policies by insinuating opponents are the same as slaveholders. That way they do not need to address the issues. They just defame the opposition - all on the taxpayer dollar.

Fortunately, this time, DHS cancelled the solicitation on 12 Feb with this note: "Due to the quantity and types of questions received concerning the solicitation, it has been determined that cancellation of the current RFP is in the best interest of the Government."

Indeed.

Dave Calder

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Florida residents just lost all their Constitutional rights

By Donald Sensing

And so did all the residents of Delaware, Rhode Island, Massachussetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, almost all of New York and some other states.

The Silicon Graybeard: Living in a Constitution-Free Zone

In case you missed it, in a rare New Years' Day ruling, Federal Judge Edward Korman declared that the "Constitution-Free Zone", 100 miles from any border of the US, including the oceans and gulf, was legal.  ...

The ACLU says nearly 2/3 of the US population lives within the constitution-free zone.  I certainly do, along with every person in Florida.  All of the major urban centers of the country: New York, Chicago, El Lay, San Francisco, Seattle, DC, Tucson... virtually every major city, virtually everyone is inside this zone.

But it gets worse. The process is well under way to negate our rights anywhere in the country. Read the whole thing, then ask yourself, "What is the Republican party going to do about this?"

The answer is nothing.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Speaker Boehner will support war resolution

By Donald Sensing

On cable news just now, Speaker of House John Boehner said just following a meeting at the White House that he would support the president's request of a declaration of war against Syria.

This is a very significant alliance with the president.

Boehner did not say that he would vote in favor of the president's war resolution as it is currently written (which many Democrats have already said is not satisfactory) but he did clearly say he thought striking Syria is "the right thing to do."

Update:

The president is willing to consider a re-written resolution.

A retired four-star general says that he has learned that the administration is privately backing away from its promise that the strikes will be "brief and limited," and is now leaning toward a "substantial intervention."

Which is likely, IMO. Last June Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey made it clear that a few runs on Syrian targets would do no good, that if the bombing was not be be merely symbolic, it would require a sustained, large effort of no short duration.

Update: Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor has also joined the war party.

Update: The pushback against Boehner has already begun:


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Monday, September 2, 2013

BBC asks me on show today

By Donald Sensing

This email was in my inbox this morning:

Hi Donald

I am a radio producer for the BBC World Service Radio programme, World Have Your Say. We are a global discussion programme carried internationally based in London. On tonight’s programme (1700-1800GMT) we are getting reaction to President Obamas decision to ask Congress about military action against Syria.

I came across your blog during my research and I was hoping you would be able to take part?

Do email me and let me know. I look forward to speaking to you.
Rabiya Limbada








BBC World Service
I responded that I would take part. And here is a handy world clock to keep track of Greenwich Mean Time, click the right arrow until you get to UTC time:



Just finished - I was brought on during the last 10 minutes or so. Here is the podcast,

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Sunday, September 1, 2013

NBC News: Obama will bomb no matter what Congress votes

By Donald Sensing

Sept. 1, 0710 CDT: David Gregory just said on NBC News' morning newscast that Obama has made up his mind to attack Syria and that he will order it no matter what Congress votes.

This has all the ingredients of a Constitutional nightmare in the making.

Update: FoxNews reported the same thing at the same time. These reports are not reporters' opinions when two outlets as diverse as NBC and FNC are saying so at the same time. The White House told them that. In fact,

However, the aide insisted the request for Congress to vote did not supplant the president’s earlier decision to use force in Syria, only delayed its implementation.

“That’s going to happen, anyway,” the source told Fox News, adding that that was why the president, in his Rose Garden remarks, was careful to establish that he believes he has the authority to launch such strikes even without congressional authorization.

Other senior administration officials, outside of the Department of State, would not confirm as much, telling reporters only that the door had been left open for the president to proceed without congressional authorization.
I have to wonder how members of Congress of either party feel now that they've learned their votes on the matter are not actually relevant to the president.

The hard question is whether any senior Democrat members of either or both the House and Senate will rein in the president. Because he will certainly ignore Republican protests.

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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Text of Obama's Syria War Resolution to Congress

By Donald Sensing

Analysis later, it's late where I live and I have to work tomorrow.


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Is Obama setting up two-prong Constitutional crisis?

By Donald Sensing

WASHINGTON, D.C.-Sept. 11, 2013. President Obama's request for authorization to carry out air strikes against Syria failed to be approved in the Congress today.

In a short statement following the 275-260 vote to deny his request, President Obama said, "The vote will not stop the necessity of punishing the Assad regime for using chemical weapons to slaughter its own people. As I said in the Rose Garden on August 31, I  I have the authority to carry out this military action without Congressional authorization. I am therefore ordering US forces to proceed with the attacks."

In his Rose Garden remarks today on Syria, President Obama said that he will seek a vote of authorization from the Congress when it returns from recess (which is on Sept. 9).

He also said has authority to bomb Syria without Congress' authorization. Here is the entire statement:



In his statement, the president also said this: "Yet while I believe I have the authority to carry out this military action without specific Congressional authorization, I know that the country will be stronger if we take this course and our actions will be even more effective."

Let's parse that.

1. He means that he thinks he has authority as president to bomb Syria without going to Congress at all.

Well, in that case he may be right, in the sense that any president has the power to do what Congress doesn't oppose. Obama illegally sent US bombers against Libya in 2011 without Congressional authority; by any stretch, the president was both declaring and making war, the former power reserved to the Congress alone.

But history, and not just of this administration, shows that Congress will usually be pretty passive about that kind of thing. The White House does not have that power so much by delegation as by concession.

However, there is another twist to what Obama might have meant that would require him to believe this, which is,

2. He means that even if Congress votes against authorizing the Syria war, he can still order the strikes because he didn't have to ask Congress in the first place.

If Congress votes to withhold authority for the strikes and Obama orders them anyway, then beyond question we will have reached one of the most serious Constitutional crises of our history. Unless unmistakably halted by Congress, we will have surrendered the last vestige of representative, Constitutional government. It is not obvious, however, that this what the president meant. Let us hope not.

But there is another component of what such a position might mean. Suppose my hypothetical news story comes true and Obama order the attacks even though Congress specifically withholds authority.

I would maintain that our flag-rank military officers are duty bound to disobey those orders. 

A military officer's oath of commissioning says,

I ... do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; ...
There is no oath of loyalty or even obedience to the president. I say that for a general officer, from the chairman of the joint chief of staff on down, to commit acts of war against another country that have been actually forbidden by Congress would be one of the grossest violations of Constitutional military duty that can be imagined. That's the second prong of a potential Constitutional crisis.

Because if Obama ignores a Congressional vote against the war and sends in the missiles with the military obeying, then we will have entered the darkest place in our history indeed: a president with literally monarchical power to use the military as he wishes and a military leadership that agrees.

Update, 0710 CDT Sept. 1: David Gregory just said on NBC News morning newscast that Obama has made up his mind to attack Syria and that he will order it no matter what Congress votes.

This has all the makings of a nightmare in the making.

Update: I should add the the officer's oath of commissioning is established by Congressional enactment.

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Obama to ask Congress for authorization to bomb Syria

By Donald Sensing

President Obama has just finished speaking in the Rose Garden on action against Syria. While I am unconvinced that he made a strategic case for the war, that is not of primary concern right now.

There are three crucial points before us from his remarks:

1. The objectives can be obtained whether the strikes are carried out now or a month from now.

2. He will seek authorization by vote from the Congress when it return from recess on Sept. 9.

3. He says he has authority as commander in chief to bomb Syria without Congress' authority.

Point 1 clearly means that Obama has shifted away from "the fierce urgency of bombing now."

Point 2 is simply a Constitutional requirement, but it is pretty baffling that he is not calling the Congress back from recess to take up the debate. Obama has shifted, apparently, from "it must be done now!" to "whenever."

Point 3 is simply wrong. Within context of all his remarks, he seemed to say that is going to Congress as a concession to public opinion and Congressional communications rather than a Constitutional requirement. He also left the door open for ordering war against Syria even if Congress votes against it.

If he does that, it will be a true Constitutional crisis. There is a difference between Congress passively allowing the president to make war against a nation without its authority (as in Libya, 2011) and expressly forbidding the war that the president starts anyway.

Nonetheless, this is a definite move in the right direction for this proposed war, so let us be thankful for it.

You and I now have time to contact our own senators and representatives about this impending vote.

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