March 29, 2012

"Obama Shifts View of Executive Power."

"When he ran for president, Barack Obama promised to roll back President George W. Bush's use of executive power, a defining point of the Bush presidency. The pledge was part of a broader pitch about Mr. Obama's governing style, which he said would focus on solving problems in a pragmatic, cooperative way. The allure of executive power, it turns out, is hard to resist...."

100 comments:

MayBee said...

This is why people are drawn to Ron Paul.

madAsHell said...

This is the C- student seeking to overturn the professor.

Ya'all didn't see this coming??

chickenlittle said...

Shouldn't Obama have gotten smaller in every way if he held to his promise?

Instead he's gotten bigger in every way.

John Lynch said...

Or he was lying all along.

And Gitmo is still open.

furious_a said...

All of Obama's promises come with an expiration date. All of them.

Comanche Voter said...

Yup--Obama's promises have the half life of a neutrino.

Carnifex said...

Not so!! No way!! You people need to cool your jets. Zero has kept one promise amazingly well. That the price of energy would skyrocket.

So fie on you, with your foul calumnies.

Our President is a honorable man.

Robin said...

Its hard to tell how much was that Obama had no clue what he was talking about and how much was that he had no intention of fulfilling his campaign promises.

I think that the shallow clueless explanation fits the data best.

Bender said...

Obama hasn't shifted one iota.

He has always been an autocratic thug who demonizes his opponents and engages in strawmen, disingenuous arguments, and outright deceit to garner support for himself. His idea of "compromise" has always been that his opponents do what he says.

You think all of those criticisms of Obama being "the Messiah" and "the One" were just over-the-top partisan jabs??

There is no shift in Obama. He is still the same arrogant punk that he was for the last 10-20 years.

Lem said...

The comparison to the Bush presidency visa vi executive power falls short if it fails to at least mention that little matter of a president responding to an attack on our own home land..

In fairness, the link has a paywall, so I cant read the article.

36fsfiend said...

John Lynch said...

“And Gitmo is still open.”

John,

Congress has something to do with that, right?

fleetusa said...

I don't think he changed at all. He was always someone else's puppet. Hence, there is an unelected group pulling the strings. They were happiest when they had both houses of Congress. Now without that they just have the Executive string to pull.

The electorate was anaesthetized by all the words coming out of his mouth. A bit like a good doctor with good bedside manner. But that was just the campaign.

iowan2 said...

To get around the pay wall, search the article title in and click on the link in the search results. That gets around the pay wall.

Obama is not smart or shrewd, or bright at all.

He is bully, using the power at his disposal. Not smart enough to consider possible repercussions. He simply acts and forces others to stop him. We are the only ones able to do that. He has cowed the popular, though vapid, cool kids (media)and it is now in the hands of the the invisible average kids, with disparate interests to join together, to rid our playground of this muscle bound dolt.

Nathan Alexander said...

Congress has something to do with that, right?

Which party had control of congress from 2008 to 2010?

Are you saying Obama was so incompetent he couldn't get even Democrats in Congress to work with him?

In support of that idea, he has gotten zero Democrat votes for his last two budgets.

edutcher said...

As Rush always said, "Everything Barack Obama says has an expiration date".

Mick said...

When there is no legal President (not natural born, since he was born British, of a British subject father) then there is no law, since the President is the executor of the laws. But then a "law prof" would know that... right? What the heck do they teach in that "law school"?

Robert Cook said...

"He has always been an autocratic thug who demonizes his opponents and engages in strawmen, disingenuous arguments, and outright deceit to garner support for himself."

This essentially describes American politics and its players in toto.

"The allure of executive power, it turns out, is hard to resist...."

Well...no shit, Sherlock.

First, who runs for the Presidency other than those with ambition for power? Second, it's a truism of that new holders of power are loathe to relenquish any powers previously accrued to their office, and will seek more. Third, this is one of the reasons we should not grant or surrender power to office-holders whom we like and trust if we would not trust those same powers to those we would dislike and distrust...as, sooner or later, such people will surely follow our favored candidate into office.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... “And Gitmo is still open.”

John,

Congress has something to do with that, right?.."

I don't know, do they? It's a military installation and last time I checked Obama is CinC.

Roger J. said...

Mr Cooks comment is spot on

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... This essentially describes American politics and its players in toto..."

This essentially describes politics anywhere.

Pogo said...

"Second, it's a truism of that new holders of power are loathe to relenquish any powers previously accrued to their office, and will seek more."

Completely true, and a good argument for a small government with limited powers, to ensure that the holders of power do not and cannot exercise much hegemony at all.

So very true, Cook, yet you advance the ideals of leftism/statism/communism.

Does not the cognitive dissonance rankle even a bit?

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Robert Cook-

I disagree with you on many things, but I do appreciate your consistency. You hold your positions with honor.

Patrick said...

Robert Cook you are correct. This is why the health care bill is bad. Institutionalizing that sort of coercive power with no meaningful check is disastrous.

Not that the President is a dictator, or anything like it, but this is why even "benevolent dictators" end up being ruthless bastards.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

When he ran for president, Barack Obama promised to roll back President George W. Bush's use of executive power...

And he kept that promise. Since Obama became President, George W. Bush has not used executive power once.

Where's the problem?

Aridog said...

fleetusa said...

I don't think he changed at all. He was always someone else's puppet. Hence, there is an unelected group pulling the strings ... The electorate was anesthetized ...

A very accurate description ... one that I've held since before 2008 election. I will n-e-v-e-r understand how any thinking individuals could vote for him, he of literally zero real world accomplishment ... but they did. People I respect did, enough so I wondered, very briefly, if I was the nutty one.

Nope, Mr Obama has proven his superficiality beyond doubt.

Christopher in MA said...

Absolutely spot on, Robert. And that's why conservatives, as opposed to the power-thirsting scum calling themselves Republicans, want the federal government to be as limited and hobbled as much as possible - in Grover Norquist's famous phrase, small enough to drown in a bathtub.

But it is amusing to those of us who saw through the MFM's bukkake job on the voting public to see how utterly devoid of principle the left is.

Illegal wars are bad - unless it's Obama.
Club Gitmo is a stain on our honor - unless it's Obama.
The Patriot Act is an abomination - unless it's Obama.
Asking what library books you read is Nazi tyranny - unless it's Obama.
Tax breaks for companies are bad - unless it's Obama.

So I must admit to some fascination in wondering what mental gymnastics Althouse will go through to justify putting this pig-ignorant, domestic terrorist-embracing ward heeler back in office.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

I might agree with Cookie, but his remarks leave an aftertaste of 'well, its OK because everyone does it'.

Anyone that has or has had teenagers surely can relate.

fleetusa, I concur. Allow me:

"Here comes the supernatural anaesthetist.
If he wants you to snuff it,
All he has to do is puff it
-he's such a fine dancer"

I told my liberal family members what a total fake Barry was back in 2007 when he was selected to run. They laughed, of course. Then when one of my lib members showed up at a family gathering with an 'obama' bumper sticker on their car, I feigned dismay by telling said member that some vandal had put this stupid and wrong sticker on their car. Delicious, I tell you.

I love telling them 'I told you so'.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Does not the cognitive dissonance rankle even a bit?.."

Pogo nails it. Hard to reconcile Mr. Cook's statement above yet advocate for greater government control over the citizenry. Single payer health care, greater entitlement spending...

Curious George said...

"edutcher said...
As Rush always said, "Everything Barack Obama says has an expiration date"."

I've never heard Rush say thi but I don't listen to him much. But if he does always say this, know that this is actually the creation of Jim Geraghty of National Review.

Matthew said...

"Congress has something to do with that, right?"

-- If only he had not frittered away his majorities in Congress on health care.

Aridog said...

I must add that I, too, think Mr Cook's comment above nails it about politics & power and why we all need to be skeptical on both sides, all sides.

I'm more likely to disagree with Mr Cook than agree, but this time, he is dead on right in a universal sort of way. Congratulations.

WV: ernplenne stratmen Really?

Mark O said...

Obama's just not that smart, and he's a liar.

MadisonMan said...

pig-ignorant

Pigs are among the smartest animals. I was reading an article about wild pigs in upstate NY and how very difficult it is to trap them because they figure things out so quickly.

As for Obama and power, well Duh. If you were among those cheering the expanse of Federal Power post-9/11 (I was not), this is your come-uppance.

Unlike Don't Tread, I take no pleasure in saying I Told You So.

bagoh20 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bagoh20 said...

You have to realize that the presidential candidate who would not act this way and would scale back the power would be someone most people would find crazy and extreme.

Don't blame the guy we picked; in one way or another, he was our choice; and we didn't give ourselves much alternative.

We really need to talk to each other with more persuasion, as in asking questions and informing not attacking. I say this as one of the worst offenders myself.

It's a tough challenge to persuade, but I think the key is that we probably all agree on much outside of politics, and that means there is hope, because it's the other things that really count and the politics is just how to get there.

Roman said...

This is the Chicago way. Tell them what they want to hear. Do whatever you want, when someone calls you out, lie and discredit them. They are just a bunch of right-wing, racist bastartds anyway.

Joe Schmoe said...

You have to realize that the presidential candidate who would not act this way and would scale back the power would be someone most people would find crazy and extreme.

If you Google 'Ron Paul is crazy' you get 18.5 million results.

Robert Cook said...

"I might agree with Cookie, but his remarks leave an aftertaste of 'well, its OK because everyone does it'."

Not at all. I'm disgusted with nearly everyone in our political mainstream...a pox on all their houses is my general feeling.

Given human nature, those who seek political office will tend to be seekers-after-power, who will tend to be expedient and concerned more with aggrandizement of their own power than with serving those from whom their power has been granted.

Thus, our political system should work to check, or at least mitigate, the worst impulses of each individual office holder. For example, Congress should be jealous of its vested powers and thus stop power-grabbing by the President. The reality of power dynamics among people is such that this cannot always be counted upon to be the case, and we have a circumstance now where Congress has essentially abdicated all power to the President, and our recent Presidents have taken advantage of this and now ASSERT claims to power that are not rightfully theirs. However, if Congress won't block such usurpation of their powers, they accede to the claims to power of the executive and a new balance of power is established as policy.

In other words, we have a failed system.

bagoh20 said...

"If you were among those cheering the expanse of Federal Power post-9/11 (I was not), this is your come-uppance."

I was one, even though I'm a bit of an extremist about smaller government (I think a bathtub is too big).

But, there are times when the government taking strong and even intrusive steps can prevent disasters, that if not prevented will lead to the people accepting outright tyranny to prevent the worse disaster later.

Imagine the level of rights that would have been abandoned if after 9/11 there were widespread anthrax terrorist deaths and even worse attacks around the country in the following years.

I don't know why that didn't happen, and I'm perplexed by it, considering how easy it would be, but maybe things like the patriot act did prevent them - maybe not.

Regardless, those powers need to be scaled back when the danger has clearly passed, as it has now. There is simply no substitute for handling both needs (security and liberty) without good people in charge.

We have a pretty clear Constitution and that hasn't helped much; our country is no longer an exceptionally free nation, despite having an exceptional set of rules designed to protect liberty.

We just need to start choosing better people. The bad will always find a way to get around the rules.

In reality it is a nation of laws AND men.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

Cookie

Your last post is a better representation of your former.

To address the expiration date on what liberals say, I would submit the following:

Don't pay attention so much to what they SAY;

DO pay attention to what they DO.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

MadisonMan

Maybe your absence of pleasure for the 'I told you so' stems from your guilt.

Obama voter, I presume???

bagoh20 said...

And please, stop the hero worship. Even great men kick the dog when they get pissed. Nobody is so smart that they will get it all right, and it's not magic.

There is no excuse for choosing boyfriends, security blankets, pants creases, or those who provide a tingle.

Robert Cook said...

"Hard to reconcile Mr. Cook's statement above yet advocate for greater government control over the citizenry. Single payer health care, greater entitlement spending...."

To the contrary...I advocate greater citizen control over government. I advocate making those if office answerable to the law.

Singlepayer health care and so-called "entitlements" are not--or do not have to be--examples of "government control over the citizenry," but are, or should be, instances of the people reaping benefits from the collective investment of their taxes in programs that will be to their benefit, just as we benefit from roads, bridges, reservoirs, interstate highways, dams, schools, police and fire departments, and other such products of our tax monies.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

"As for Obama and power, well Duh. If you were among those cheering the expanse of Federal Power post-9/11 (I was not), this is your come-uppance."

And there you have it folks. Liberal rage, on display...so now, we are going to get it good and hard because of the dumb hick cowboy Bush and the doesn't deserve a heart because he never had one Cheney.

May your hate consume you.

bagoh20 said...

"roads, bridges, reservoirs, interstate highways, dams, schools, police and fire departments"

Those things are no longer the goals or the highest priority of the agencies in place to do them.

There is no reason all of them can't be done by competing private sector entities. All would be less expensive and in half the time. There are a lot of ways to teach a child or build a road, but the way we do it now is pretty close to the worst.

36fsfiend said...

Nathan Alexander said...

“Are you saying Obama was so incompetent he couldn't get even Democrats in Congress to work with him?”

No. It seems to have something to do with fear on the part of some members of Congress.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“I don't know, do they? It's a military installation and last time I checked Obama is CinC.”

Congress controls the funding to build an installation in the States and holds the authorization to move prisoners out of Gitmo. Both of which they have not permitted.

Nathan Alexander said...

Juxtaposition:
Don't Tread said:
To address the expiration date on what liberals say, I would submit the following:
Don't pay attention so much to what they SAY;
DO pay attention to what they DO.


Robert Cook said:
To the contrary...I advocate greater citizen control over government. I advocate making those if office answerable to the law.

And that's the problem, Robert. Your words and actions don't match.
You claim to advocate for greater citizen control, but your actions work to support Democrats.

If you want to have those in office answerable to the law, you will vote straight-ticket GOP and work to effect their election.

There are multiple reasons for this.
1) Democrats have a history of making words whatever they need them to mean at the moment in order to seize power to do what they want, even when it conflicts with their promises. Clinton and Obama are both excellent examples of that.
2) The press is far more skeptical and adversarial with Republicans than Democrats, almost to the point of outright participation in Democratic Party messaging and zero skepticism/critique of Democratic politicians.

So if you want govt misfeasance and malfeasance uncovered and to have politicians held accountable to their constituents, vote GOP.

If not, you are merely being a liberal: a hypocrite who says nice-sounding things for strategic purposes.

Like phx advocating for civility only toward conservatives.

Nathan Alexander said...

@35fsfiend,
No. It seems to have something to do with fear on the part of some members of Congress.

You are blaming Democrats for being political and moral cowards?

I agree.

Andy Freeman said...

> We just need to start choosing better people.

If you design a device which only works if made with unobtanium is a bad design, no matter how what the device's properties.

> The bad will always find a way to get around the rules.

That's a good indication that you might be trying to do the wrong thing.

Nathan Alexander said...

@36fsfiend,
Congress controls the funding to build an installation in the States and holds the authorization to move prisoners out of Gitmo. Both of which they have not permitted.

Both of which they had 2 years of complete Democratic Party control to accomplish.

But didn't.

You are making the "Obama incompetent" and "Democrats are moral/political cowards" argument stronger with every excuse you post.

Tim said...

"Singlepayer health care and so-called "entitlements" are not--or do not have to be--examples of "government control over the citizenry," but are, or should be, instances of the people reaping benefits from the collective investment of their taxes in programs that will be to their benefit, just as we benefit from roads, bridges, reservoirs, interstate highways, dams, schools, police and fire departments, and other such products of our tax monies."

That's just plain stupid.

The multiple failed instances of the Marxist notion of the dictatorship of the proletariat fading to communism self-government makes this example ignorant, or dishonest.

Any public program is going to be run by governments asserting and exercising "control over the citizenry," and, given nearly 5,000 years of experience, it is utterly insane to think, let alone believe, large, publicly run institutions are going to run like rural New England townships.

36fsfiend said...

Nathan Alexander said...

“You are blaming Democrats for being political and moral cowards?”

No. It’s both sides.

“You are making the "Obama incompetent" and "Democrats are moral/political cowards" argument stronger with every excuse you post.”

No. Just stating that Obama isn’t a dictator. You know that whole separation of powers thing in the Constitution, right?

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... No. It’s both sides.

“You are making the "Obama incompetent" and "Democrats are moral/political cowards" argument stronger with every excuse you post.”

No. Just stating that Obama isn’t a dictator. You know that whole separation of powers thing in the Constitution, right?.."

I'm fairly certain short of cutting off funding for Gitmo, Congress doesn't have much say over its operations. Obama promised to close it. He didn't even with a huge Dem majority in Congress. He lied.

Robert Cook said...

"There is no reason all of them can't be done by competing private sector entities."

Of course there are reasons public works should NOT be done by private sector entities. We have seen the intrusion of private sector entities into the prison system and into support services to the military, and they have proved more expensive and less efficiently run than when run by the government. Moreover, they are further removed from public oversight.

"All would be less expensive and in half the time."

No.

You guys (& gals) need to relenquish this religion of "free enterprise is always best" and its dogma that "private sector entities always work cheaper, faster, better."

paul a'barge said...

The allure of executive power, it turns out, is hard to resist...."

Well, that's one way to put it.

Another is that Obama is a lying, sack-of-crap hypocrite.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“I'm fairly certain short of cutting off funding for Gitmo, Congress doesn't have much say over its operations. Obama promised to close it. He didn't even with a huge Dem majority in Congress. He lied.”

Read up on the defense authorization bill.

As far as having support in Congress, here’s the words of House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, after the administration decided not to hold the trial for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York City:

“It's unfortunate that it took the Obama administration more than two years to figure out what the majority of Americans already know: that 9-11 conspirator Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is not a common criminal, he's a war criminal. I hope the Obama administration will stop playing politics with our national security and start treating foreign terrorists like enemy combatants."

Seems like the Republicans are afraid as well to hold trials for war criminals in the States.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Singlepayer health care and so-called "entitlements" are not--or do not have to be--examples of "government control over the citizenry," but are, or should be, instances of the people reaping benefits from the collective investment of their taxes in programs that will be to their benefit, just as we benefit from roads, bridges, reservoirs, interstate highways, dams, schools, police and fire departments, and other such products of our tax monies..."

Care to tell me any nation that has accomplished this political utopia? It could probably be accomplished with a Federal govt. half the size it is now yet that would mean quite a few people would have to start relying on themselves rather than the government.

Your idea of govt is great but unfortunately does not take into account human nature. The electorate will always vote for more of the treasury and the politicians will decide how much to give in return for more power.

Nathan Alexander said...

36fsfiend,
So you are claiming Obama has to be a dictator to get a Democrat-majority Congress to pass a law he wants?

Really?!?

Here is the Separation of Powers fact:

Obama is in control of the Executive Branch.

Democrats were in control of the Legislative Branch for 2 years.

So President Obama introduces a bill to close Gitmo. Democrats, in control of both houses, pass the bill into Law.

The Judicial Branch does not get involved unless someone brings a suit claiming a law is unConstitutional.

Where does that process require President Obama to be a dictator to introduce a bill or get his own party to pass that bill into Law?

"Dictator" or "separation of powers" does not even come close to being an issue in the circumstances of Obama's first two years of Presidency. (although President Obama did openly wish for greater Authoritarian powers, interestingly)

Obama is incompetent or dishonest.

Robert Cook said...

Tim said, in reply to me (here): "'Singlepayer health care and so-called "entitlements" are not--or do not have to be--examples of "government control over the citizenry," but are, or should be, instances of the people reaping benefits from the collective investment of their taxes in programs that will be to their benefit, just as we benefit from roads, bridges, reservoirs, interstate highways, dams, schools, police and fire departments, and other such products of our tax monies.'

"That's just plain stupid.

"The multiple failed instances of the Marxist notion of the dictatorship of the proletariat fading to communism self-government makes this example ignorant, or dishonest.

"Any public program is going to be run by governments asserting and exercising 'control over the citizenry,' and, given nearly 5,000 years of experience, it is utterly insane to think, let alone believe, large, publicly run institutions are going to run like rural New England townships."


Your assertion, then, is that government cannot work...ever. So you must be a proponent of anarchism.

I am not an anarchist and I believe that, while there can be no perfect government--as there are no perfect people--governments can work for the "governed," i.e., the citizenry, who grant power to representatives of their interests to manage the public's resources for the public's good, and with the public's consent and oversight.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... As far as having support in Congress, here’s the words of House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, after the administration decided not to hold the trial for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York City:.."

Simple question, does Obama have or not have the power to order Gitmo closed.

Yes or no?

Cause if he does, he lied about closing it. If he needed Congress, he had a huge Dem majoirty for two years to ram it through.

Nathan Alexander said...

@Robert Cook:
You said:
You guys (& gals) need to relenquish this religion of "free enterprise is always best" and its dogma that "private sector entities always work cheaper, faster, better."

What happened to you advocating for greater citizen control over the govt?

Now you are abandoning even the empty words. Well, it goes along with your lack of action.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... governments can work for the "governed," i.e., the citizenry, who grant power to representatives of their interests to manage the public's resources for the public's good, and with the public's consent and oversight..."

Well the problem with that is people tend to vote for their own interest rather than for the public good. Case in point are the riots in Greece and in Spain because the people want their entitlements even though there is no money to pay for it but they want it anyway, the public good be damned. Hence the riots and shattered storefronts.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

"Simple question, does Obama have or not have the power to order Gitmo closed."

No. Congress controls that power.

"Cause if he does, he lied about closing it. If he needed Congress, he had a huge Dem majoirty for two years to ram it through."

Obama supposedly had a majority in Congress when they were working on his signature piece of legislation, the ACA. Don't you recall all the politicking involved with the passage of that legislation?

Why aren't the Republicans on board with closing Gitmo?

Carnifex said...

@36fsfiend

I got a better question...why are you so adamant about letting illegal combatants go free to kill more American troops? In every other war, if you were caught on the battlefield without a uniform, odds are you were summarily executed. This seems to me to be the better solution than yours. To leave an enemy alive is to invite your own death.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Obama supposedly had a majority in Congress when they were working on his signature piece of legislation, the ACA. Don't you recall all the politicking involved with the passage of that legislation?.."

It wasnt supposedly, he did. It's not the GOP's problem that Obama didn't possess the leadership qualities to get his own party to support removing something they spent eight years demonizing Bush for.

"... Why aren't the Republicans on board with closing Gitmo?.."

Why should they be? Personally I think terrorists should be shot out of hand.

36fsfiend said...

Carnifex said...

“I got a better question...why are you so adamant about letting illegal combatants go free to kill more American troops? In every other war, if you were caught on the battlefield without a uniform, odds are you were summarily executed. This seems to me to be the better solution than yours. To leave an enemy alive is to invite your own death.”

That’s not a better question but you are somewhat answering my question about why some in Congress aren’t on board with closing Gitmo.

As far as summarily executing individuals in every other war if they were caught on the battlefield without a uniform, do you have specific examples? Are you familiar with the Geneva Conventions and the rules regarding unlawful combatants?

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... "Simple question, does Obama have or not have the power to order Gitmo closed."

No. Congress controls that power..."

Ok let me rephrase. Does Obama possess the power to order the release of the prisoners?

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“Why should they be? Personally I think terrorists should be shot out of hand.”

So, in other words, you don’t believe in the U.S. Constitution, is that correct?

Nathan Alexander said...

@36fsfiend,
Obama supposedly had a majority in Congress when they were working on his signature piece of legislation, the ACA. Don't you recall all the politicking involved with the passage of that legislation?

Why aren't the Republicans on board with closing Gitmo?


Supposedly? Really?

Please tell us what the numbers of Democrats and Independents who caucused with Democrats were in both Houses from 2008 to 2010.

"All the politicking" for ACA was exclusively among Democrats.
Since it passed with zero GOP votes in either house, that proves that a proposal to close Gitmo could also have been closed w/o GOP input.

The GOP doesn't want Gitmo closed because we don't want to give terrorists access to our legal system, because we don't want terrorists to have even the faintest chance to radicalize domestic criminals, because it would introduce an unnecessary and unacceptable risk to our citizenry to have them on the US mainland.

A better question would be:
Since Democrats had control (enough votes) to close Gitmo for 2 full years, why are they dishonest about their reasons for not wanting to close Gitmo?

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

"Ok let me rephrase. Does Obama possess the power to order the release of the prisoners?"

In accordance with the latest defense bill, Congress has made it nearly impossible to transfer captives anywhere. Legislation passed since Obama took office has created a series of roadblocks that means only a federal court order or a national security waiver issued by the Secretary of Defense could trump Congress and permit the release of a detainee to another country.

However, neither seems likely since U.S. District Court judges are not ruling in favor of captives in the unlawful detention suits winding their way through the federal court in Washington. And on the occasions when those judges have ruled for detainees, the U.S. Court of Appeals has consistently overruled them in an ever-widening definition of who can be held as an affiliate of al Qaida or the Taliban.

But again, the issue is about closing Gitmo which Congress is not permitting.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... So, in other words, you don’t believe in the U.S. Constitution, is that correct?..'

Sure. I just don't believe it applies to murdering jihadists.

In December 1944 we summarily executed a whole bunch of Otto Skorzeny's greif commandos for dressing up as American MPs and directing our troops into ambushes. I'm betting they didn't get a briefing on the Constitution.

36fsfiend said...

Nathan Alexander said...

“Please tell us what the numbers of Democrats and Independents who caucused with Democrats were in both Houses from 2008 to 2010.”

You can look that up.

“The GOP doesn't want Gitmo closed because we don't want to give terrorists access to our legal system, because we don't want terrorists to have even the faintest chance to radicalize domestic criminals, because it would introduce an unnecessary and unacceptable risk to our citizenry to have them on the US mainland.”

Sounds like fear to use our own system of justice. No faith in our way of life, eh? As far as people being radicalized, I would say that the assassination of bin Laden, the burning of Korans, pissing on enemy corpses and the killing of civilian women and children will have a greater impact than putting terrorists in maximum security prisons.

“Since Democrats had control (enough votes) to close Gitmo for 2 full years, why are they dishonest about their reasons for not wanting to close Gitmo?”

How are they being dishonest? Obama is the one who stated that he wanted to close Gitmo, not Congress.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... But again, the issue is about closing Gitmo which Congress is not permitting..."

Hmmm. I wonder if Obama knew that before he made that promise. Too bad he didn't have you as an advisor :-)

But again, he enjoyed a huge congressional Democratic majority for two years. It doesn't speak well on his leadership abilities if he couldn't have gotten that legislation reversed fairly quickly.

If ACA gets repealed, his whole first term is pretty much a complete failure since it seems it was about the only thing he accomplished, outside of adding more debt in one term than Bush did in two.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

"Sure. I just don't believe it applies to murdering jihadists."

OK.

"In December 1944 we summarily executed a whole bunch of Otto Skorzeny's greif commandos for dressing up as American MPs and directing our troops into ambushes. I'm betting they didn't get a briefing on the Constitution."

The present set of Geneva Conventions were established in 1949 after WW II.

Are you familiar with the Laws of Armed Conflict which our services operate under today?

Rusty said...

As far as summarily executing individuals in every other war if they were caught on the battlefield without a uniform, do you have specific examples?

You need to read some history. Ours is just about the only country that does not kill non uniformed combatants out of hand. If you were familiar with our own history you'd know about Lt. Andre. A British spy dressed as a civilian. He was captured and hung.


36fsfiend said..

So, in other words, you don’t believe in the U.S. Constitution, is that correct?


Straw man.
In war enemies are treated like enemies and military law prevails. It is one of the reasons non uniformed enemy combatants are still in gitmo. They are subject top military law. If we tried them here in the continental US we'd have to try them by civilian law.

History is your friend.

Nathan Alexander said...


How are they being dishonest? Obama is the one who stated that he wanted to close Gitmo, not Congress.


Do you really want to stand by the assertion that no Democrat member of Congress ever stated an intent to close Gitmo?

Do you really want to be on record asserting the Democratic Senate Majority Leader and Democratic House Majority Leader never mentioned an intent to close Gitmo?

Nathan Alexander said...

@36fsfiend,
Are you familiar with the Laws of Armed Conflict which our services operate under today?

Yes. I am also better at understanding context than you: he clearly meant that he would not have taken them prisoner in the first place. He is not implying that he wanted to close Gitmo by killing all the terrorists already captured.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“But again, he enjoyed a huge congressional Democratic majority for two years. It doesn't speak well on his leadership abilities if he couldn't have gotten that legislation reversed fairly quickly.”

Again, Obama is not a dictator. Is that what you want?

“If ACA gets repealed, his whole first term is pretty much a complete failure since it seems it was about the only thing he accomplished, outside of adding more debt in one term than Bush did in two.”

He campaigned on ending the war in Iraq, getting bin Laden, the repeal of DADT, a new nuclear weapons treaty with Russia and many other issues. From what I understand, many on the Left are not happy with the mandate in the ACA as well. It could be a plus if the mandate is repealed.

Hoosier Daddy said...

".. Sounds like fear to use our own system of justice. No faith in our way of life, eh?..."

Well since those prisoners didn't get their Miranda rights from the guy in the 82nd Airborne I guess they walk.

"... I would say that the assassination of bin Laden, the burning of Korans, pissing on enemy corpses and the killing of civilian women and children will have a greater impact than putting terrorists in maximum security prisons..."

Yet when they fly planes into our buildings, kidnap and behead defenseless civilians we shouldn't let that kind of stuff have an impact on us.

Can't Obama as CinC just end the Afghan war today and bring the troops home? That way the Taliban can go back to killing women and children?

36fsfiend said...

Rusty said...

“Straw man.
In war enemies are treated like enemies and military law prevails. It is one of the reasons non uniformed enemy combatants are still in gitmo. They are subject top military law. If we tried them here in the continental US we'd have to try them by civilian law.

History is your friend.”

What does the Constitution state regarding treaties?

36fsfiend said...

Nathan Alexander said...


"Do you really want to stand by the assertion that no Democrat member of Congress ever stated an intent to close Gitmo?

Do you really want to be on record asserting the Democratic Senate Majority Leader and Democratic House Majority Leader never mentioned an intent to close Gitmo?"

Stating they want to do it and actually getting it accomplished are two different things.

Obama and Democratic leaders want to reduce the subsidies provided to oil companies but that's not going to happen either.

Does it mean they are lying if it doesn't happen?

Don't Tread 2012 said...

Amazing, the nonsensical circular strawman 'arguments' presented by the left, on these issues and many, many others.

These are nothing more than 'squirrel' arguments meant to deflect and distract from the actions that are easily reviewable.

For instance, take the budgets presented by the democrat-controlled majority in the House and the Senate in the 2008-2010 period.

Cue crickets.

Responding with anything other than 'it was the fault of the GOP for not participating' might indicate a glint of openness, nothing more.

We're waiting.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Again, Obama is not a dictator. Is that what you want?.."

Where did I say that? Is a Democrat President with a Democrat majority Congress a dictator? If he gets legislation passed with his partys approval that kinda sounds like how our system is supposed to work. I don't think bi partisanship is a requisite of passing legislation.

Evidently the electorate wasn't impressed with his accomplishments hence the large GOP House majority. It remains to he seen if bin Laden, a nuke treaty and repealing DADT will carry him through November.

36fsfiend said...

Nathan Alexander said...

“Yes. I am also better at understanding context than you: he clearly meant that he would not have taken them prisoner in the first place. He is not implying that he wanted to close Gitmo by killing all the terrorists already captured.”

I’m referring to the Laws of Armed Conflict in regards to summarily executing unlawful combatants on the battlefield. That is a war crime.

Robert Cook said...

Nathan Alesander said:

"@Robert Cook:
You said:
You guys (& gals) need to relenquish this religion of 'free enterprise is always best' and its dogma that 'private sector entities always work cheaper, faster, better.

"What happened to you advocating for greater citizen control over the govt?

"Now you are abandoning even the empty words. Well, it goes along with your lack of action."


Nathan, your entire comment here is a non-sequitur, and I can't discern at all what point you're driving at.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“Where did I say that? Is a Democrat President with a Democrat majority Congress a dictator? If he gets legislation passed with his partys approval that kinda sounds like how our system is supposed to work. I don't think bi partisanship is a requisite of passing legislation.”

Yes, but not all Democratic members in Congress agree 100 percent of the time with Obama. Just look at the issues of insurance for contraception and the repeal of subsidies for oil companies as a couple of examples.

“Evidently the electorate wasn't impressed with his accomplishments hence the large GOP House majority. It remains to he seen if bin Laden, a nuke treaty and repealing DADT will carry him through November.”

I think the Presidential election is a given. Obama for 4 more years. The real battle is going to be for the control of Congress in my opinion.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

"I’m referring to the Laws of Armed Conflict in regards to summarily executing unlawful combatants on the battlefield. That is a war crime."

And the solution?

How about unlawful combatant ID laws?

That way, in combat situations, these participants will be easier to identify.

And if said combatants with government-issued ID are summarily executed, charges of war crimes can be brought against the violators.

Darwin was right!!!

damikesc said...

No. Just stating that Obama isn’t a dictator. You know that whole separation of powers thing in the Constitution, right?

Didn't stop Obama from sending our troops into Libya.

Seems like the Republicans are afraid as well to hold trials for war criminals in the States.

Republicans realize giving Constitutional protections to non-Americans is kinda stupid.

Too bad Democrats don't seem to agree --- at least not aloud.

Why aren't the Republicans on board with closing Gitmo?

Because it's the best of a series of bad options.

Republicans never called for it to be closed. That was a Democrat demand.

So, in other words, you don’t believe in the U.S. Constitution, is that correct?

In what way are non-Americans covered by the US Constitution?

Sounds like fear to use our own system of justice. No faith in our way of life, eh? As far as people being radicalized, I would say that the assassination of bin Laden, the burning of Korans, pissing on enemy corpses and the killing of civilian women and children will have a greater impact than putting terrorists in maximum security prisons.

No according to Democrats for the prior 8 years before Obama. GITMO was the biggest reason terrorists hated us. It's great to see that you recognize how moronic that claim was --- but I'm betting you'd still believe that had McCain won.

36fsfiend said...

Don't Tread 2012 said...

“And the solution?”

What are you asking?

“How about unlawful combatant ID laws?”

What do you mean? When a noncombatant engages in combat operations they become an unlawful combatant.

36fsfiend said...

damikesc said...

“Didn't stop Obama from sending our troops into Libya.”

What power did he use granted to him by Congress?

“Republicans realize giving Constitutional protections to non-Americans is kinda stupid.”

Where in the Constitution does it stipulate that our judicial system only applies to Americans? If a foreigner commits a crime in our country, what system is used to prosecute him?

“Because it's the best of a series of bad options.”

Why don’t we follow the Constitution and the Geneva Conventions?

“In what way are non-Americans covered by the US Constitution?”

Again, where in the Constitution does it stipulate that our judicial system only applies to Americans?

“No according to Democrats for the prior 8 years before Obama. GITMO was the biggest reason terrorists hated us. It's great to see that you recognize how moronic that claim was --- but I'm betting you'd still believe that had McCain won.”

I wouldn’t necessarily say the biggest reason. Again, other things have transpired since the opening of Gitmo to cause terrorists to hate us. That being the case, why should we continue to let fear drive our decision regarding Gitmo now?

Nathan Alexander said...

@Robert Cook,
Nathan, your entire comment here is a non-sequitur, and I can't discern at all what point you're driving at.
Robert, you claimed that you are a constant advocate for greater citizen control over govt. I pointed out that words mean less than actions, which are apparently invariably to increase govt control over citizens via voting for Democrats.

Then you complain about conservatives promoting market economy solutions.

That complaint is, itself, advocacy for increased govt control over citizens. As such, you have progressed from being all talk and no action for liberty, to even abandoning the pretense of advocating for liberty.

In less than 24 hours, no less!

It is a non-sequitur only to the extant that your own actions are not in concert with your self-aggrandizing claims.

Robert Cook said...

Nathan,

Not all functions require or are best served by market economy or private sector solutions.

Looking to the government to serve certain roles or fulfill certain functions is not, de facto, promoting "greater government control over the citizenry." The government--at least, our government--is the citizenry, instituted and organized by, for us, and, ideally, overseen by us.

The people's power over the government--as well as our place as the constituents of our elected representatives--has been usurped by exactly those entities who are deemed by the "free marketeers" as those who will save us: the private business sector, whose lobbyists have replaced the voters as the real drivers of policy.

A government will always serve a constituency, and in place of the citizenry our government's constituents are the wealthy elites, the so-called 1%.

Rusty said...

What does the Constitution state regarding treaties?



Um. For the most part when you are at war with someone treaties with them are pretty much null and void. Hence military law. And the desire, by convention-notice it isn't called a treaty- to treat all UNIFORMED COMBATANTS in a humane manner.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Yes, but not all Democratic members in Congress agree 100 percent of the time with Obama. Just look at the issues of insurance for contraception and the repeal of subsidies for oil companies as a couple of examples..."

Which again speaks to his poor leadership skills. If that idiot Bush could get bi-partisan suport for two wars, Homeland Security, NCLB, Part D, one would think President Hope and Change could at least accomplish closing down what Dick Durbin referred to as s gulag.

His re-election may be a given to you but pulling less than 50% approval amidst a lackluster GOP ticket isn't something I would bet on. YMMV

damikesc said...

What power did he use granted to him by Congress?

None. Congress actually officially opposed it.

Where in the Constitution does it stipulate that our judicial system only applies to Americans?

The fact that no other country has agreed to our Constitution, it is bafflingly asinine to even try to claim our laws apply to non-citizens.

Hint: If we revoked every visa and tossed every non-citizen out of the country immediately, it would violate, literally, zero laws.

Why don’t we follow the Constitution and the Geneva Conventions?

Neither address that issue. Try again. Have you ever read either?

Again, where in the Constitution does it stipulate that our judicial system only applies to Americans?

It's basic law. Why the hell would you think OUR laws apply, at all, to other countries' citizens? It's a question so profoundly stupid that one wonders if it is possible to dumb down an answer enough for you to grasp it.


That being the case, why should we continue to let fear drive our decision regarding Gitmo now?

Who has fear besides Democrats? Republicans believe Gitmo is the best option presently. Democrats, on the other hand, feel it is a gulag and haven for torture.

36fsfiend said...

Rusty said...

“Um. For the most part when you are at war with someone treaties with them are pretty much null and void. Hence military law. And the desire, by convention-notice it isn't called a treaty- to treat all UNIFORMED COMBATANTS in a humane manner.”

The Geneva Conventions are not null and void during war. And being treaties that have been ratified by the Senate, they are considered laws of the land in accordance with the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution.

Additionally, the Laws of Armed Conflict, or military law as you call it, are based in part on the Geneva Conventions which discusses the treatment of lawful and unlawful combatants.

36fsfiend said...

Hoosier Daddy said...

“Which again speaks to his poor leadership skills. If that idiot Bush could get bi-partisan support for two wars, Homeland Security, NCLB, Part D, one would think President Hope and Change could at least accomplish closing down what Dick Durbin referred to as s gulag.”

You must believe all members in Congress are persons who don’t have constituents to answer to – or lobbyists for that matter. Bush got support for two wars and the creation of Homeland Security because of 9/11 and the fear and hatred those attacks generated throughout the country. It wasn’t because of his stellar performance as Commander-in-Chief.

“His re-election may be a given to you but pulling less than 50% approval amidst a lackluster GOP ticket isn't something I would bet on. YMMV”

The latest ABC/WaPo opinion poll has Obama at 53 percent, above Romney by 19 points in basic popularity, and has a record 50 percent of Americans now rating Romney unfavorably overall.

36fsfiend said...

damikesc said...

“None. Congress actually officially opposed it.”

Check out the War Powers Act of 1973. We also have treaty obligations as a member of NATO.

“The fact that no other country has agreed to our Constitution, it is bafflingly asinine to even try to claim our laws apply to non-citizens.”

Under what judicial system are illegal immigrants in this country prosecuted under if they commit a crime while in this country?

“Neither address that issue. Try again. Have you ever read either?”

You stated the reason Republicans aren’t on board with closing Gitmo is because it's the best of a series of bad options. I disagree. We should follow our Constitution and the Geneva Conventions. And yes, I’ve read through them and have had briefs on the applicable parts of the Conventions from the Judge Advocate General while on active duty.

“It's basic law. Why the hell would you think OUR laws apply, at all, to other countries' citizens? It's a question so profoundly stupid that one wonders if it is possible to dumb down an answer enough for you to grasp it.”

Our system applies to all persons that are accused by our government for violating our laws. Have you ever heard of a Status of Forces Agreement and how that applies to individuals serving in foreign countries?

“Who has fear besides Democrats? Republicans believe Gitmo is the best option presently. Democrats, on the other hand, feel it is a gulag and haven for torture.”

People who believe that Gitmo is the best option are basing that on fear. And Gitmo in the past was a haven for torture which was a disgrace for this country.

Tim said...

Robert Cook said...

Tim said, in reply to me (here):

..."Your assertion, then, is that government cannot work...ever. So you must be a proponent of anarchism.

I am not an anarchist and I believe that, while there can be no perfect government--as there are no perfect people--governments can work for the "governed," i.e., the citizenry, who grant power to representatives of their interests to manage the public's resources for the public's good, and with the public's consent and oversight."


1)Ha, ha, no, I'm not an anarchist. Nor should any of my commentary, the one you commented on, or any previous ones, give you (or anyone) any sense whatsoever of me being anything but a traditional, classic liberal - which today means "conservative Republican." At least I can openly declare myself. What, pray, do you call yourself, honestly?

2) On what basis do you believe "governments can work for the "governed," i.e., the citizenry, who grant power to representatives of their interests to manage the public's resources for the public's good, and with the public's consent and oversight?" More to the point, what makes you believe they can do so better than they do so now?

And, without any reasonable expectation that this fantasy of public consent and oversight improving coming true any time soon, why would anyone, including you, want to invest government with any more power over individuals or the economy than it currently has?

It seems utterly short-sighted, contrary to interests, and irrational.