Executive Power

Wasn't Senator Obama the Guy Who Believed in Checking With Congress Before Blowing Stuff Up?


Reason 24/7

Once upon a time there was a United States Senator who was very critical of the then-incumbent president for unilaterally waging war without asking for authorization from Congress. That president's actions pretty clearly violated the Constitution's Article 1, Section 8, not to mention the War Powers Resolution. As this senator told the Boston Globe, "The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation." That senator was named Barack Obama, and he is now president of the United States.

From Leigh Ann Caldwell at CNN:

As President Barack Obama considers military action in response to Bashar al-Assad's alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria, a debate over whether he must seek Congress' consent has surfaced. It's a debate with which the president is extremely familiar.

As a senator, Obama was a staunch critic of President George W. Bush for not obtaining renewed authorization for the war in Iraq. He blasted his predecessor in 2007, saying, "The president does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation."

Additionally, as a candidate for president, Obama reaffirmed that sentiment. He told the Boston Globe in a questionnaire, "The president does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation."

"It is always preferable to have the informed consent of Congress prior to any military action," Obama added at the time.

As a senator, Vice President Joe Biden had a similar take. During a campaign speech in Iowa in 2007, he said "the consequences of war—intended or otherwise—can be so profound and complicated that our founding fathers vested in Congress, not the president, the power to initiate war, except to repel an imminent attack on the United States or its citizens."

What a difference a few years — and a taste of the imperial purple — can make! As Caldwell points out, the Obama administration didn't look for congressional permission to wage war when sending military units to attack targets in Libya, or to expand operations in Afghanistan. Drones busily blow the crap out of targets intended and not so much in Pakistan and Yemen without a "by your leave" toward the Capitol. 

Undoubtedly, the president and his supporters would argue that Congress threatens to be "obstructionist" — which is just another way of pointing out that lawmakers could say "no." This, it might be mentioned, is a power explicitly given the legislative body by the Constitution. Or, as a difference engine-programming, steampunk version of Thomas Jefferson might have put it, "that's a feature, not a bug."

So President Obama breaks with his senatorial self to continue down the monarchical path of his predecessor in the White House — a path he once harshly criticized. Before he gained the power to stroll down it, that is.

Oh, yeah. Senator Obama also opposed warrantless surveillance, though he fudged a bit on the answer by saying he would "only authorize surveillance for national security purposes consistent with FISA and other federal statutes." He also rejected the idea that a president could detain U.S. citizens without charges as enemy combatants. In fact, that senator had some pretty interesting views about the limits of executive authority.

Whatever happened to that guy?

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    C’mon, Too Chilly – this is different cause world something, coalition of the derp.

    Oh…fuck you, that’s why!

  2. Whatever happened to that guy?

    Well when he emerged from his chrysalis he became D Won, Slayer of Evil, one unbound by the rules and conventions that constrain mere mortals like us!

    1. Nah, he’s just a typical politician. Hating the power that others hold yet luxuriating in it when he has it. “I was against it before I was for it” or “I was for it before I was against it”. Same excuse, same results.

      And everyone still think the major parties are different. How nice.

  3. What a difference a few years ? and a taste of the imperial purple ? can make!

    Said another way: What difference at this point, a few years later and with a taste of imperial purple, does it make?

  4. I smell WWIII

    1. How so? Not a chance.

      But a Nobel Peace Prize winner starting WWIII would be priceless.

      1. Not saying it’s at all likely, but it’s at least remotely plausible that a chain of events could occur leading to war between the US and Russia over Syria. Again, not saying it’s likely or going to happen, but it’s not completely and absurdly implausible.

        1. A chain of events that would be ‘unexpected’ were they to occur I’m sure.

          Seriously, does an attack on Syria, if it is more than a couple of missiles, give anyone an excuse/cover to engage Israel?

          1. FOOD FIGHT!!

            1. hah! Carpet bomb the region with bacon.

          2. A friend mentioned that Iran was going into saber rattling overdrive toward Israel. I’m not sure why the Persians want their major cities turned into glass, but they seem to like the idea.

            1. I’m not sure why the Persians want their major cities turned into glass, but they seem to like the idea.

              Well, the batshit crazy among them actually believe the Madhi (the Islamic version of the Messiah) will come to Earth during a period of great strife, after which the world will be cleansed in fire.

              1. Sure will. At least their world will if they fuck with the Israelis.

                1. It gets worse. According to Twelver Shiites, of which Iran’s mullahs are devote followers, the events that will occur before the coming of the Madhi are:

                  The vast majority of people who profess to be Muslim will be so only in name despite their practice of Islamic rites and it will be they who make war with the Mahdi.

                  Before his coming will come the red death and the white death, killing two thirds of the world’s population. The red death signifies violence and the white death is plague. One third of the world’s population will die from the red death and the other third from the white death.

                  Several figures will appear: the one-eyed Antichrist (Masih ad-Dajjal), the Al-Harth, Al-Mansur, Shuaib bin Saleh and the Sufyani.

                  There will be a great conflict in the land of Syria, until it is destroyed.

                  Death and fear will afflict the people of Baghdad and Iraq. A fire will appear in the sky and a redness will cover them

                  1. I don’t have an in depth knowledge of Islamic apocalypticism, but I’ve noticed that most of the Abrahamic stuff could fit pretty neatly together. Roughly it seems that if the Jews get themselves a Messianic ruler everyone else’s apocalypse would fall into line.

                    1. Roughly it seems that if the Jews get themselves a Messianic ruler everyone else’s apocalypse would fall into line.

                      And then there are those of us who believe the Jews already got their Messianic ruler.

              2. the world will be cleansed in fire.

                Sooo if the fringe religious elements in Iran provoke Israel to wipe them off the face of the earth they win?

                1. Yes, because they get to die and fuck their 72 transparent-skined, large-breasted virgins and 12 young boys sweet as rasins forever in heaven.

                  1. Transparent, Sally Impossible-style?

                    Also, isn’t this yet another reason to back the fuck off and let the kerfuffle in Syria fizzle into another of the innumerable internecine imbroglios characterizing (what I’m going to paternally qualify with air quotes while referring to) their “civilization”?

                    1. Exactly. Why we don’t just back the hell off and let them all kill each other is beyond me. What do we have to gain by supporting either side? Nothing.

                  2. Transparent-skinned? That just sounds unattractive. I don’t find really white or really black skin attractive (not saying I don’t think there are pale-skinned white women or dark-skinned black women that are attractive, just that I’m generally attracted to them less, and if I am attracted to them, it’s probably because of some other feature or features). I’m down with pretty much any shade of brown though, from white girls with a tan to medium-skinned black women.

    2. I would be willing to bet something more like when we cruise missiled that Sudanese aspirin factory.

      1. Or the Chinese embassy?

        1. We did not mean to hit the Chinese embassy. We meant to hit the Sudanese aspirin factory, we just did not think it was an aspirin factory.

          Different types of incompetence.

          1. I’m certain the Chinese and/or Sudanese dug some comfort out of that distinction.

      2. Agreed. Or the Libyan milk factories that happened to employ Khaddafi’s kids and wife?

    3. I won’t lie. That possibility has concerned me a bit lately.

      1. It’s not like the Great Powers accidentally got themselves involved in a world war with each other before. Oh wait…

  5. a taste of the imperial purple

    HAHA! “imperial purple” HAHA! THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID!!

  6. Ahem, Tuccille, where’s your Nobel Peace Prize? Uh huh. Oh, and BOOOOOOOOOOSH!

    1. Least deserved Nobel: Obama’s Peace or Krugman’s Economics?

      1. Well, Obama seems to know what peace is, and is clearly against it. Krugman can’t even figure out what he’s arguing for or against consistently (other than Democrats are always right, I guess). I gotta give the prize to Krugman.

        1. No, Krugman actually did some decent work in the past, before he became a partisan cheerleader. Obama got the award for what they thought he was going to do (“Hope”), and out of Bush hatred.

          1. Didn’t he get it for his work on trade?

            This is what Obama was officially awarded for: “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples”.


            1. Krugabe won it for his contributions to New Trade Theory. Nothing Earth-shattering or having anything to do with macroeconomics.

            2. Yeah, “efforts,” while he’d been President for what, nine months?

              1. He won it around nine months. The deadline for nominations was February 1, 2009. So at most he had 11 days of being president before being nominated.

      2. Arafat’s Peace. Also there is no Nobel Prize for Economics.

  7. He is very consistent in his belief that when someone else is President they should have to follow the Constitution.

    1. Remember the mad rush to make some rules related to murder-droning people in case he lost, that were quietly shelved when he won?

  8. This is what happens when you elect a pansy who’s not a hunter. They have to get their inner caveman out by killing people instead of deer like you’re supposed to do.

    1. Paul Ryan has Duke’s vote.

      1. That’s a nice buck.

    2. You know, you might be on to something.

      Wait. Teddy Roosevelt.

      Never mind.

      1. Say what you want about TR, he didn’t send anyone to do anything he wasn’t willing to do himself. If Obama, or Obama’s mythical son was sitting in the back of C17 heading for a drop point, or hell even refueling Hornets on the deck of a CVN, I doubt he’d be so eager to get into a war.

        At least the old warmongering shitheads actually put their chips on the table.

        1. While Roosevelt was campaigning in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on October 14, 1912, a saloonkeeper named John Flammang Schrank shot him, but the bullet lodged in his chest only after penetrating his steel eyeglass case and passing through a thick (50 pages) single-folded copy of the speech he was carrying in his jacket.[78] Roosevelt, as an experienced hunter and anatomist, correctly concluded that since he was not coughing blood, the bullet had not completely penetrated the chest wall to his lung, and so declined suggestions he go to the hospital immediately. Instead, he delivered his scheduled speech with blood seeping into his shirt.[79] He spoke for 90 minutes. His opening comments to the gathered crowd were, “Ladies and gentlemen, I don’t know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.”[80] Afterwards, probes and x-ray showed that the bullet had traversed three inches (76 mm) of tissue and lodged in Roosevelt’s chest muscle but did not penetrate the pleura, and it would be more dangerous to attempt to remove the bullet than to leave it in place. Roosevelt carried it with him for the rest of his life.

          Yeah, I have to admit that I’d go to war for a C-in-C that badass.

          1. You certainly would. TR believed very strongly that war was good for the country.

          2. It’s just as well they didn’t try to remove the bullet – medicine wasn’t quite as advanced as today, and they may have made the situation worse (as happened with some other bullet-bearing Presidents).

        2. And Obozo’s stated excuse for not joining the military when he finished high school in 1979 was because there wasn’t any reason for the US to be militarily involved anywhere.

          Hhmm… in 1979 I recall Pol Pot decimating the population of Cambodia, the USSR invading Afghanistan, and Iran taking our embassy hostage. Heck, any one of those reasons would be more cause than what is going on in Syria today.

      2. TR never started any wars. A few interventions in Latin America but nothing major.

        Also won a Peace Price, back when it meant something (for negotiating an end to the Russo-Japanese War).

      3. What are you talking about, Mr. Willis? TR got a Nobel Peace Prize, just like Obama – but TR actually officiated at a peace conference between Japan and Russia, it wasn’t a “screw his predecessor” award like certain prizewinners.

  9. Brace yourselves. Marcos Moulitsas guts the rationale for hate crimes without even noticing.


    1. There is a bizarre obsession with the delivery mechanism of death, as if a wartime casualty cares how it was killed or maimed.

      1. SOmething tells me that the link to hate crime will be lost on MarKOS

    2. Anyone registered over there might point out how he cribbed his argument from Starship Troopers:

      We just call it “The Bug War” if we call it anything, which we usually don’t and in any case the historians date the beginning of “war” after the time I joined my first outfit and ship. Everything up to then and still later were “incidents,” “patrols,” or “police actions.” However, you are just as dead if you buy the farm in an “incident” as you are if you buy it in a declared war.

    3. I like how he blames neo-cons. Its like its always 2002 in Markos’s world.

  10. Hilarity

    The math was alarmingly simple. Nearly 25,000 students took the entrance exam for the University of Liberia this year, and every one of those nearly 25,000 failed.

    At least they tried to award seats by merit instead of selling them.

    They were trying to root out a grinding culture of corruption in the country’s higher education system.

    “There is a perception in our society largely that once you take the University of Liberia admission exam, if you do not pay money to someone, or if you do not have appropriate connections, you would not be placed on the results list,” said James Dorbor Jallah, who was hired by the university to administer the entrance exam, in an interview with Voice of America. “The University has been grappling with how they could manage the process whereby people’s abilities would be truly measured on the basis of their performance on the examination.”

    This year, he said, was the first time in the university’s history that admissions were to be determined by score alone, guaranteeing ? at least in theory ? that a spot at the school couldn’t be earned through a bribe or family connections. In a country with a long history of closely policed social hierarchies, the new exam was meant to be the beginning of a Liberian educational meritocracy, he said.

    1. Wow – most-racist entrance exam EVAR.

      1. +1, adjusted to +5 to make up for the long history of racist oppression.

        1. There’s no one more racist against native Almanians than the Almanians themselves.

  11. Once upon a time there was a United States Senator who was very critical of the then-incumbent president for unilaterally waging war without asking for authorization from Congress. That president’s actions pretty clearly violated the Constitution’s Article 1, Section 8, not to mention the War Powers Resolution.

    Uh, Bush got authorization for both Iraq and Afghanistan. Which wars did he unilaterally wage in which he did not get authorization?

    1. The drone strikes in Pakistan started under W.

      1. No, he had AUMF for that. Initially, anyways. You can argue and I would agree with you that THAT AUMF in particular was too vague, but he did have it.


      2. Both administrations claimed drone strikes are authorized by the 2001 AUMF. Unfortunately, Congress left it stupidly (and deliberately?) vague, and gave total discretion to the President when it comes to deciding who is a terrorist.

        1. Which is why JD’s entire thesis is lame. He doesn’t have to make up history for this current situation to be completely hypocritical and ridiculous.

          They got that covered without resorting to selective memory.

        2. I don’t think the AUMF was that vague at all.

          IN GENERAL.?That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.

          It said he could kill those responsible for 9/11. It uses the words planned, authorized, committed, aided, harbored… ALL PAST TENSE.

          Both those fuckers WAY overstepped their authority. It didn’t give them authority to kill anyone who ever heard the name Al Qaeda.

          1. Past tense from the passage of the AUMF or past tense from the time force is used? If India had harbored Osama bin Laden starting in Feb 2002, would the AUMF not apply to them?

            If it’s frozen in time at the passage of the AUMF, then BO doesn’t get any authority from it since he wasn’t president at the time.

            1. It’s past tense from 9/11. Read it. It says what it says.

              OBL planned 9-11. Anyone harboring him AFTER 9/11 still falls under the definition of enemy combatant, as they are aiding a combatant who falls under the AUMF. LOAC! They get killed in the process, tough shit. Them’s the rules of war. But killing Pakistanis and Taliban who had nothing to do with 9/11 is WAY over the fucking line.

              1. The Taliban weren’t harboring Bin Laden?

                1. To say all Taliban were harboring OBL, is like saying all Americans are responsible for Ted Bundy. The fucking dumbest thing we did in this entire fiasco was to start targeting the Taliban (a close second being the disbanding of the Iraqi army).

                  1. The Taliban was an organization that harbored al-Q both before and after 9/11. They obviously fall under the purview of the AUMF.

                    It’s hard to argue against a punitive expedition against them in AFG. Not even close to what we did in IRQ.

                  2. Yes, but it says:

                    against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons

                    Which applies to all of the Taliban. All of al Quaeda. With no restrictions on what country they may be in, and no expiration date. It’s pretty much a blank check.

                    1. Which leaves Iraq a crime against decency and sanity for all time, since it had nothing to do with 9/11. I expect libertarians to criticize pretty much every military action, especially ones committed unilaterally by a president. I expect any rational person to realize that Iraq was not somehow better than other actions with orders of magnitude fewer dead just because it got a Congressional rubber stamp.

      3. That’s not what BO was talking about in the quote. He was talking about a re-authorization of Iraq.

        1. OK, so when did he unilaterally wage war in which he did not get authorization?

          JD led with “That president’s actions pretty clearly violated the Constitution’s Article 1, Section 8, not to mention the War Powers Resolution.”

          Not seeing that. I understand that Obama didn’t think that was cool, but Bush never did it.

          Obama arguably already has in Libya, there’s no need to make up shit.

          1. I’m agreeing with you here; just pointing out to Virginian that while sporadic drone strikes in Paki were unauthorized by Congress, that’s not what BO was on about.

            1. That’s what I’m saying, Tucille doesn’t need to rewrite history to make this point.

              BO was full of shit then and now, there’s no need to reframe it.

  12. Wasn’t Senator Obama the Guy Who Believed in Checking With Congress Before Blowing Stuff Up?

    How dare you insinuate that our dear and fearless leader Barry the Beautiful contradicted Himself? That’s blasphemy!

    1. He only believed in BOOOOOSH checking with Congress, not himself. So see? He isn’t being contradictory!

  13. BOOOOOOOOOOOSH made him do it!!!

  14. Repo Man is on at 9.

    1. Meh. Glenda Farrell is on TCM all day and night tomorrow.

      She’s a hoot in Mystery of the Wax Museum, the original version of House of Wax, which you can catch at 9:15 PM.

      The Torchy Blane movies (seven of them starting at 12:30 PM) are also a lot of fun.

      1. She’s great. Yay, TCM!

      2. Thanks for the tip. Even if I’m too busy to watch any tomorrow I’ll record
        Mystery of the Wax Museum and I Was a Fugitive From a Chain Gang.

        Everyone should see the latter.

        1. I would have posted my blog link to I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang too if it weren’t for H&R’s limits on the number of links allowed.

  15. He’s evolved.

    1. Something wrong with Evolution christfag?

      1. You forgot “bleevepig”.

  16. 116 Congresscritters sign letter asking White House seek authorization for military action in Syria.

    Yeah, that’s right, shit just got real. A polite letter has been sent!

    1. Is that 116 Representatives, or 116 members between both houses? Either way, it leaves at least 319 Representatives who didn’t sign it.

      1. House only. 98 Republicans and 18 Democrats. They could only find 18 Democrats willing to state their position that the president is restricted in how he can levy war. Insanity.

        1. So 18 House Democrats have principles? Sounds about right.

          1. Team solidarity trumps both principles AND the Constitution.

            Top. Men. all around.

          2. Say what you will about the belief that the president has the sole discretion of when to wage war and when to kill US citizens on American soil, at least it’s a principle.

            1. So is FYTW.

      2. Well, mine is on there. Probably that email I sent him this morning. Me and Steve be tight.

        1. Mark Sanford signed it, which makes me remember that his personal failings aside he wasn’t that bad politically.

          1. So he ran away from his wife to bang some hot Latina chick. Is that supposed to be a personal failing? 😉

            1. He has good taste, but running out on your wife and kids is a pretty shitty thing to do.

              I have little respect for adulterers. Either suppress the desires you have or be a man and tell the wife it isn’t working out.

              1. Better yet, don’t get caught.

              2. Let the kiddies figure it out for themselves. They’ve got a whole lifetime for that.

                Were life all that simple…

        2. Mine is on there too. Not that I’m close to him.

        3. Mine isn’t, but three or so other MI ones were. Mine was probably busy at the march or something.

        4. Not seeing a lot of Henry Waxman on there.

        5. Mine is on there. Yay!

      3. Mine’s not on it… time for another letter.

    2. And I’m sure that when he declines, they will immediately initiate impeachment proceedings.

    3. What else can they do BUT send a letter? It’s not like they have the power to reign a President in through articles of impeachment.

    4. Lot of VA GOP on there, which is nice. Of course the only VA GOP in a real position of power is not on there. Fuck Eric Cantor.

  17. Not saying it’s at all likely, but it’s at least remotely plausible that a chain of events could occur leading to war between the US and Russia over Syria. Again, not saying it’s likely or going to happen, but it’s not completely and absurdly implausible.

    P. Brooks-ing it.

    Conspiracy theory I caught on… I think it was the Sirius Commie station.

    Caller was saying that Qatar has been bankrolling the rebels, wanting to topple Assad, and then be able to run a pipeline to the Mediterranean/Europe, through Syria (I think, no real comment on that part.)

    The trick is, something like 25% of Russia’s revenue comes from gas and oil, mostly sold to Europe.

    If Europe has gas/oil from Qatar, they can ignore Russia. Massive hit to Russia in revenue, and power.

    So then, the idea is that attacking Syria puts Russia’s back against the wall. They *have* to do something.

    Seems like a crazier conspiracy theory than when I started typing it. Still, a bit interesting to consider who is helping the rebels.

    1. Russia knows it would be ridiculous to take on the US directly, and vice versa. WWIII is out of the question.

      However, Israel and Iran may decide to go at it, and nukes could be involved. So a major regional war is possible.

      1. I wouldn’t be shocked if Putin figured he could arm a ton of people in the area against the US, and get away with it, though. Draw the US into a massive regional slugfest or something.

    2. This will be a couple cruise missiles into a tent, killing several camels and a few brown children so the great one can save face. It won’t have any impact on the outcome of the war.

      1. Well, it could leave Assad in a better position. “I stood up to the great Satan! Support me!”

        Which would be… not really funny…

    3. I don’t see why such skullduggery needs to be involved. Syria contains the Russian Navy’s only warm water port outside of the confines of the former USSR.

      One need not be Sun Tzu to realize the strategic importance maintaining that base has for the Russians.

  18. “Now to a tyrant or to an imperial city nothing is inconsistent which is expedient…”


  20. What a difference a few years ? and a taste of the imperial purple ? can make!

    This is obviously a racist dog-whistle. The drug cocktail known as “Purple Drank” (enjoyed by the late Saint Trayvon) is primarily used among black gangsta culture. Since Obama is only half-black, and he enjoys white racial privilege, he drinks a variation of the concoction: Imperial Purple. 2Chili is implying that Obama is a drug addict and that it influences his decision-making. Therefore, 2Chili is a racist. Q.E.D.

    1. (enjoyed by the late Saint Trayvon)

      You forget to add “Peace be Upon Him”. Nice try, but your racism still came out!

      1. “Peace Be Upon Him”? That sounds suspiciously like Ay-rab terrorist talk…

        1. It’s actually a common Jewish custom to say that line when speaking of the dead.

      2. “Peace be upon him?”

        It’s ?alayhi as-salam, you greasy Islamophobe!

    2. By the way, I can say on good authority that the recipe for an “Imperial Purple” is basically a ghetto-ed out Imperial Martini, but with cough syrup instead of maraschino and Thunderbird replacing the vermouth.


  21. So what was up with last night’s late links? 448 comments? I left at 60 something and came back and there were like 300 and said no way I’m jumping back into that. What was the attraction?

    1. We were all kicking the piss out of Shriek. I know, I know; beating up a retard is low sport.

      1. It’s okay when the retard is shreeek. It is worthy of nothing but contempt.

    2. Probably one of the usual hot thread starters.

      1. Hot thread starter?
        You mean things like Abortion, circumcision or the Historicity of Jesus?

        1. You forgot divorce, deep-dish, and artisanal mayonnaise.

          1. relative hotness of women and sports.

          2. alpha vs beta?

          3. Atheism as a religion.

            1. Don’t even…

          4. Lobster girl getting fat and ugly in the years since the pic was posted.

          5. I’ve yet to see an artisinal mayonnaise slew, other than someone chiming in to be wrong about disliking mayonnaise.

        2. Or more important things like deep dish pizza, artisanal mayonnaise or who is the best Captain of the Enterprise.


          2. the best Captain of the Enterprise.

            The only one who actually went down with the ship when it blew up (outside a temporal loop), Rachel Garrett.

    3. Too few posts after the PM Links?

  22. Bush actually did get authorization for Iraq & Afghanistan.

    1. Bingo. Reason’s “pox on both their houses” dogma is so deep-seeded that they can’t even criticize BO properly. He’s not as bad as Bush on foreign policy, he’s much much worse (as unimaginable as that would have been 5 years ago).

      1. deep-seeded

        Keep towing that lion, sun.

  23. Late Night Links After Dark!

    California Assembly passes bill that would allow non-physicians to perform abortions

    But the wave of abortion restrictions sweeping the nation seems to be breaking at the Sierra Nevada, as California now stands poised to increase abortion access by letting more medical professionals perform certain procedures.

    “The line is being held in California,” said Elizabeth Nash, state issues manager at the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive-rights research group.

    Gov. Jerry Brown soon will decide whether to sign AB154 by Assemblywoman Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, which wouldlet nurse practitioners, certified nurse-midwives and physician assistants with special training perform the most common kind of first-trimester abortion. The Assembly passed the bill on a 50-25 vote in May, and the state Senate passed it Monday on a 25-11 vote, with most Democrats and no Republicans for it.
    “Californians have always liked to think of ourselves differently,” said Kathy Kneer, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California, adding that she hopes the bill “truly does signal a turn of the tide against these state restrictions all across the country. Hopefully this will send a message to go in the opposite direction.”

    1. Wait, shouldn’t non-physicians be the ones to perform abortions anyway? Hippocratic Oath and all…

      1. Yes

        Primum non nocere

        1. Indeed. And baring that, there is a specific vow in the Oath to not perform abortion:

          I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect. Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy.

          1. -According to a 1993 survey of 150 U.S. and Canadian medical schools, for example, only 14 percent of modern oaths prohibit euthanasia, 11 percent hold convenant with a deity, 8 percent foreswear abortion, and a mere 3 percent forbid sexual contact with patients?all maxims held sacred in the classical version. The original calls for free tuition for medical students and for doctors never to “use the knife” (that is, conduct surgical procedures)?both obviously out of step with modern-day practice.


            1. They replaced that with “for any procedure only enter the code which guarantees the highest reimbursement.

    2. Why is abortion the only area where liberals are capable of comprehending the economic effects of government regulation?

      1. Comprehension? They just want their abortions.

        1. What I mean is that on every other issue liberals deny the burdensome effects that regulation has on businesses and the economy. When the business is abortion, they suddenly acknowledge those effects. That’s all I’m saying

          1. Oh yeah. When the VA state legislature put through some abortion restrictions, they sounded like a bunch of Club for Growth members. Literally had one liberal on my Facebook talking about “burdensome regulations on small businesses” which I found to be hilarious.

  24. 50 things every geek needs to know.

    Good to know this means I’m not a geek.

    1. How many pages does that list run to? Or is it one of the dreaded slide-show lists?

      1. it’s one long screen

    2. I’m maybe three for five, but this is news and kinda awesome.

    3. I guess I better go back to my tractor pulls.

  25. I sure hope Rand Paul beats this issue like a drum. It could be his springboard to victory.

    1. I could be accused of being overly cynical, but the single-digit support among Americans for Syrian intervention might be an indication of war weariness more than anything else, and the one thing less likely to court enthusiasm from Americans sick of seeing the bodybag pileup on CNN are long-winded anti-war speeches by nobody senators like Paul. These are not people interested in the principled stance, only the illusion of Congress as careful shepherds of the public trust.

      1. That’s a very good point, but I still think the rewards outweigh the risks for Randall. He just needs to get his point across clearly and with brevity. I think we’re all fans of brevity.

        1. By all means, he should nail Obama’s ass to the wall given half a chance, but I doubt anyone who isn’t already hyperpartisan on the issue will pay him any attention. Democrats generally seem content spinning narratives to excuse his war footing, and Republicans seem mostly happy with bombing a few inconsequential targets to make good on the president’s word. Everyone else (myself included!) is wondering what the BFD is.

  26. DId someone say Abortion?

    1. Yes, upthread.

      1. hot damn so they did

        1. Did someone say stupid bleevers?

          1. You did. There are those of us who oppose abortion on secular grounds though.

            1. Apatheist ?_??| 8.28.13 @ 11:40PM |#
              “You did. There are those of us who oppose abortion on secular grounds though.”

              AFAIK, *everyone* opposes abortion, even those who have had it.
              Others say it should be prohibited by the government.
              Care to take a choice and provide evidence?

              1. You don’t know nearly as much as you think. I know people who are enthusiastic about abortion.

                1. our man Cytotoxic loves abortions.

                  1. SO. MUCH.

                2. “If men got pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament”

                  You’ve seen that bumper sticker too?

              2. AFAIK, *everyone* opposes abortion, even those who have had it.

                Assuming that’s true FTSOA, isn’t that a bit like police depts opposing cops beating up/shooting innocent people and their pets while implicitly allowing it to happen?

              3. I suspect you know what I meant. Care to address atheist pro-lifers? Shouting bleevers doesn’t really work (not that it works on theists either).

          2. Why do you resort to name calling?

            1. Because it’s appropriate.

            2. Because his body houses an unclean spirit, removable only by the holy waters of the American River in Sacramento.

            3. Why do you resort to name calling?

              It’s all Sevo knows. Sevo is the only person I’ve ever seen argue with Tony who actually made me kind of side with Tony.

              1. I seldom disagree with Sevo. I often disagree with his tactics.

                1. I’m a lifelong atheist and I find Sevo’s rancor tiresome.

                  1. Sevo’s just a dick when it comes to these things. Doesn’t make him wrong, it just makes him insufferable.

                    1. Wow, does anyone else here have a problem with Sevo? Jesus Christ.

                    2. I’d have no problem with him if he weren’t needlessly mean when people disagree with him. I actually normally agree with Sevo’s point, I just find his attitude off-putting.

                    3. Don’t say those words Tulpa, Sevo will unleash a rant about how you’re talking about a made up person

  27. Taft and Truman had this argument; Taft lost. Truman [agreed that it was] a “police action” rather than a “war” and at least had the fig leaf of UN approval. The obvious difference compared to our current piece of shit, is that Truman was dealing with an armed aggression against a US ‘protectorate’, what ever that is worth.
    Taft wasn’t the only one who lost; I saw a bumper sticker today with flop-ears on it and ‘He Won. Get Over It’. I wanted to scribble ‘We Lost!’ on the rear window with a 4″ paint brush, but decided the driver would probably figure it was pigeon shit.
    Anyhow, Eisenhower asked for special dispensation regarding a nuclear sneak attack, and got it; at least he asked Congress for it.
    O’piece of shit is doing nothing of the sort.

    1. We should be readying missile strikes on whoever coined ‘twerk’ instead of on Syria.

      1. While I can’t in good conscience condone droning the fellow, I do think sanctions are appropriate.

  28. Night kids.

  29. MONDO COOL: Labour MPs and rebels from David Cameron’s own caucus forced him into a humiliating climb-down wrt military action on Syria. Britain’s military response will be at least delayed, and I imagine that will at least delay America’s response.


    This is…so awesome. It could damage Cameron permanently. It’s not impossible it could get him ousted eventually. A man can dream. I hate David Cameron. I hate him so very much. A lot more than Obama actually. It’s transcendent.

    1. This is news. I don’t follow limey politics; what’s your beef with Cameron?

  30. If we want Late Night Links we’ll have to make them more impressive than this thread.

  31. It is always preferable to have the informed consent of Congress […]

    There is your weasel word, folks. It’s preferable, as opposed to mandatory according to the Constitution. The only authority he has to use force is under imminent threat. Syria couldn’t be spun as an imminent threat with even the most spinny of arguments.

  32. He was (and is) a douche.

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