Impeach Obama? No Way!

This article was originally published in March 2011

Who made them God?

Not so fast my friends. “No way” could quickly become “way” if a couple of House of Representative members have their way. A few short days ago, under orders from President Obama, the U.S. military engaged in combat actions in the country of Libya. The purpose of these actions were to impose a no fly zone over Libya under authority of UN Security Council Resolution 1970 (2011) of 26 February 2011. You can read the Resolution here:

http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2011/sc10200.doc.htm

It seems that this UN Resolution was the sole authority for President Obama to dispatch our armed forces into conflict with a foreign nation. But there is another U.S. law called the Constitution that limits the ability of the President to do this. There is also the War Powers Act of 1973, of which many claim gives the President the authority to take such actions. With that in mind, let’s investigate President Obama’s actions to determine if his actions are Impeachable.

President Obama ordered our armed forces to engage in hostile action against the country of Libya under the guise of a humanitarian mission, namely to stop the reported slaughter of innocent civilians. Implementing a “no fy” zone over Libya was put in place to stop Libyan aircraft from killing it’s civilians. On the surface, these actions appear to be for the cause of saving innocent lives, but were President Obama’s actions legal under U.S. law? The Constitution outlines the separation of powers and gives authority to declare war to the Congress. Specifically:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

Looking at the powers of Congress, specifically: To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions; it is the sole responsibility of Congress to call for military action. Through out the last three major military operations in foreign countries (Iraq and Afghanistan), the approval of Congress, by their vote, was given in each instance before hostile actions were undertaken. Based on the powers of Congress as given, President Obama stepped beyond his authority to order combat actions against Libya.

The President is also given certain powers in the Constitution. The most important one dealing with his role as Commander in Chief is stated as such:

The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.

It is easy to see the authority levels when it comes to the military, most importantly this: ” when called into the actual Service of the United States”. This statement in the Constitution makes it very clear who has the authority to order military action, that would be Congress. It is only after the Congress orders the military to action, that the President has any authority to direct our nations military forces in combat. Once again, President Obama has overstepped his authority by directing hostile action against a foreign nation.

Congress passed a law in 1973 that outlines the Presidents authority to direct hostile actions. That law is The War Powers Act of 1973. The Act supplies the President with some authority to order combat operations, and they are outlined in section 1541: Purpose and Policy:

a) Congressional declaration It is the purpose of this chapter to fulfill the intent of the framers of the Constitution of the United States and ensure that the collective judgment of both the Congress and the President will apply to the introduction of United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, and to the continued use of such forces in hostilities or in such situations.

(b) Congressional legislative power under necessary and proper clause Under article I, section 8, of the Constitution, it is specifically provided that the Congress shall have the power to make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution, not only its own powers but also all other powers vested by the Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any department or officer hereof.

(c) Presidential executive power as Commander-in-Chief; limitation The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

As we look at the War Powers Act, paragraph (a), it outlines the authority to introduce the U.S. Armed Forces into hostilities. 1. a declaration of war. As I have outlined, it is the responsibility of Congress to declare war. Congress has taken no such action against Libya. 2. specific statutory authorization. As I have also outlined, this would have to come from a vote of Congress to approve military action, which no such authority was given concerning Libya. 3. a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces. In this instance, Libya did not attack any part of the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

In Section 1542: Consultation; Initial and regular Consultations, it states the following:

The President in every possible instance shall consult with Congress before introducing United States Armed Forces into hostilities or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, and after every such introduction shall consult regularly with the Congress until United States Armed Forces are no longer engaged in hostilities or have been removed from such situations.

When will the people stand up?

It appears that President Obama chose not to consult with Congress. Had he done so, the law of statutory regulation would have been demanded. This did not occur. At this point of the investigation, the remaining sections are moot to the decisions of the President. Once the President violated th conditions in Section 1541, the remaining sections are meaningless. Had President Obama acted in accordance with the War Powers Act, his Constitutional violations would also have been avoided. However, President Obama failed to act in accordance with both the Constitution and the War Powers Act. This is an impeachable offense which should certainly be pursued by the House of Representatives.

I have presented my opinion on the actions of President Obama concerning actions in Libya. We are a nation of laws. Our Constitution is very clear on the separation of powers when it comes to our armed forces. As a Constitutional Republic, no one person should ever have the sole authority to direct our armed forces into hostile actions, those are the actions of dictators, not U.S. Presidents. The American people should be screaming for impeachment. Our President acted as a dictator, we must remind him that he is not, and do it quickly a decisively. There must be lessons taught to those who blatantly abuse their power, that time has come!

Live Free!

G!

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/50/usc_sup_01_50_10_33.html

http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html

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Comments

  1. Where do I sign?

  2. An Illegal (non) war? Where is Cindy Sheehan when you need her?

  3. gmanfortruth says:

    8)

  4. Buck the Wala says:

    Interesting anaylsis, and overall a valid interpretation of the law.

    However, there remains open a question of interpretation. You neglect the fact that the Obama Administration has raised legitimate questions about the applicability of the War Powers Act, etc. to this particular situation. This is not a situation of a President completely ignoring or flouting the law of the land, but of a President raising a different interpretation as to its applicability to a given situation.

    As such, impeachment would be the wrong avenue to take. What is needed is a ruling on the applicability of the War Powers Act (or new legislation from Congress). Assuming the Obama Administration’s interpretation is ruled as incorrect, and further assuming Obama continues his current course of action in Libya, then impeachment may be the proper means of reproach. Until then though, all you have is differing interpretations of a law, which cannot and should not raise to the level of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ to warrant impeachment.

    Ok, now I gotta go track down some coffee…

    • gmanfortruth says:

      He will never get impeached. But I do laugh at the way politicians can pervert the clear meaning of the law.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Shades of grey my friend, shades of grey…

        • gmanfortruth says:

          I think the grey is a manufactured fantasy by a narcisstic ego maniac.

          • It is NOT a different interpretation of the law. It is ONCE AGAIN ignoring what the law and the Constitution says and doing as he pleases.

            Like the cartoon says, same shit, different asshole!

    • Mathius™ says:

      ::Doing best Crock Hunter impression::

      Crickey.. watch as the wala tracks the wild coffee though the office. He’s tracked it all the way to it’s lair in the break room. See how he follows the slightest signs of the presence of the coffee – see how he sniffs the air in his search. There it is, in the corner… it looks like he’s about to pounce..

      Oh, and a successful hunt for the wala!

      The Wala will now take this coffee back to his den where he will enjoy his fresh kill.

      Tune in next week where we will conclude whether the gazelle from Armageddon went north, to the ample sustenance provided by the mountainous peaks above, or south..

      • Buck the Wala says:

        If only you realized just how accurate that description is!

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        That Red Bull is giving you auditory hallucinations again isn’t it?

        • Mathius™ says:

          “again” suggests separate incidents – that is, the hallucinations stopped at some point and then started up again.

          This is not the case.

  5. Mathius™ says:

    Test test test..

    I think SUFA ate my post…

  6. Sending troops into combat and spending public money on ordinance and supplies for such combat is a big deal. So why would any president not follow the letter and intent of the law and get approval for such action? Why split hairs over the definition of words? This is too serious for such games. If I were in Congress I would immediately order the withdrawal of all men and material from this operation and severely reprimand the President for his actions. The offense is impeachable in my eyes but there is no chance that the Senate will convict. Only if some disaster befalls some of our troups is that a possibility.

    • Mathius™ says:

      So why would any president not follow the letter and intent of the law and get approval for such action?

      I generally agree. Though I do wonder what authority the President has to use troops in compliance with the UN treaty, I am inclined to say that this is illegal. However, I am not a lawyer and cannot comment on legality, but I can say that there’s really no moral justification of which I am aware for this action (though, again, I still feel like I’m missing a piece of the story).

      That said, I’m curious.. does “follow the letter and intent of the law and get approval” incorporate deliberately lying and manipulating congress to get their consent to launch into a war on grounds you know to be false? Would you say that that is impeachable, too?

      • I would say that was impeachable-of course one would have to prove the “deliberate” part.

        • Mathius™ says:

          That depends.. not all “crimes” require intent. Many do, some do not. For example, if you speed in your car, it does not matter that you didn’t do it deliberately. Mens rea isn’t required. But murder does require intent. The rules surrounding impeachment do not specify, to my knowledge, that he committed the crime with intent.

          But, as usual, I defer to our in-house counsel.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            To my knowledge the term ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ (such that would give rise to impeachment) have never been defined.

            More to your point though, if the underlying crime required mens rea and the President was not found to have the necessary mens rea, no crime was committed, so no impeachment can occur.

      • Mathius,

        No, actually terms of treaties with other nations are foremost and above laws of the land, so if the UN says “go fight”, that supersedes the Constitution that says “ask permission of Congress”

        • gmanfortruth says:

          Interesting, I’ve never heard that before. What is the precedence for that.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Actually you are mistaken.

          A treaty does not supercede the Constitution. SCOTUS has been very clear on this issue.

          • Buck,

            Please provide context where SCOTUS said such a thing, for such a thing would be directly contradictory to the Constitution.

            The reason Congress ratifies Treaties is to make such a Treaty “law” – and thereby making it the “Law of the Land” applicable ON the United States.

            Otherwise, you have to demonstrate that Congress did not ratify the UN, however, given the US is a founding member, you will find Congress DID ratify the UN treaty.

        • This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            The terms of a Treaty do not supercede the terms of the Constitution.

            They become the law of the land as any federal statute would. But the Constitution still reigns supreme. In other words, a treaty will always trump state law, and will trump preexisting federal law. A treaty will not trump a subsequent federal law (to my knowledge) nor will it trump the Constitution.

            • Buck,
              Please provide where SCOTUS agrees with you.

              Otherwise, you create a massive Constitution contradiction by claiming that Congress ratifying such a treaty is unconstitutional

          • Buck, read this again:

            any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

        • Mathius™ says:

          Buck is correct.

          Constitution
          Then Treaties
          Then Federal Law

          ..

          The reason I bring this up is that if the treaty ratified granted the President power to use force as authorized by the UN, then they have delegated their power to authorize force. That is, just like they use agencies such as the FCC to make binding laws within certain bounds despite the fact that the FCC is not specifically granted though by the Constitution, they may have given the UN the power to authorize the President to use the military.

          Put another way, imagine that Congress passes a law “Anita has the authority to declare war.” Well this isn’t unconstitutional, per say, it’s a delegation of congressional powers. If, then, Anita gives the President the green light and he invades Libya without Congress, there wouldn’t be anything illegal about it.

          So, to me, I keep wondering if Congres gave the UN this power..

          If you think about it, you’ll note that the Constitution only mentions the supreme court.. but because the SCOTUS cannot hear all cases, they created lower courts and delegated out authority. Same story here, perhaps?

          • You and Buck are not right.

            Treaties with other nations is PARAMOUNT.

            If you do not wish to abide by the treaty, you WITHDRAW from the Treaty.

            But as long as the TREATY exists, the US is BOUND by it.

          • Mathius,

            If you think about it, you’ll note that the Constitution only mentions the supreme court.

            What are you talking about?
            The Constitution mentions all Branches.

            All it says is that SCOTUS has juridicition in jugdement where
            .In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction.

            So if Libya sues the US, SCOTUS takes the case, should it be heard in the USA.

            • Mathius™ says:

              Of the judicial branch, only the SCOTUS is mentioned.. they had to create other courts to delegate the load. These other have no power granted by the Constitution. In the same way, federal agencies are no mentioned, yet they were created to delegate the powers of Congress.

              Thus, it seems to me that the branches are able to authorize other to wield their powers. (fact). Given this, it seems plausible that congress, in ratifying the treaty with the UN, may have given the UN the power to authorize the use of force by the US military.

              • Mathius,

                Treaties are specifically articulated in the Constitution, so your understanding based on what you said above is wrong

              • I don’t see where the UN authorizing or agreeing that the US can use military force-means the US can do so without following our own laws.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              BF, I’m not going to argue with you on this. The hierarchy of laws is as follows:

              1) Constitution and Amendments thereto
              2) Federal Law and Treaty
              3) State Law

              You are completely wrong in your analysis on this issue. But I’m not going to argue it any further than this.

    • gmanfortruth says:

      T-Ray,

      I agree with your sentiment. If the military commanders followed an illegal order, yet to be determined, this could change how the military acts in the future.

  7. Obama is ignoring the opinion of the Justice Dept. and Dept. of Defense, and using the State Department’s legal view. Had that failed, he might have gotten the EPA or Dept of Education to sign on….

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/president-obama-rejects-justice-departments-war-powers-interpretation_574896.html

    Yesterday morning the New York Times confirmed that the White House’s interpretation of the War Powers Resolution was, in fact, rejected by both the Office of Legal Counsel and the Defense Department:

    Jeh C. Johnson, the Pentagon general counsel, and Caroline D. Krass, the acting head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, had told the White House that they believed that the United States military’s activities in the NATO-led air war amounted to “hostilities.” Under the War Powers Resolution, that would have required Mr. Obama to terminate or scale back the mission after May 20.

    But Mr. Obama decided instead to adopt the legal analysis of several other senior members of his legal team — including the White House counsel, Robert Bauer, and the State Department legal adviser, Harold H. Koh — who argued that the United States military’s activities fell short of “hostilities.” Under that view, Mr. Obama needed no permission from Congress to continue the mission unchanged.

    This is an extraordinary story, for several reasons:

    1. It reveals the desperate extent to which President Obama is willing to stretch his position to avoid agreeing with the modern conservative position that Congress has specific constitutional tools for limiting the president’s war power—most importantly, the power of the purse, and the power to hold up executive and judicial nominations and obstruct other administration priorities—but statutes like the War Powers Act are not among them.

    Rather than conceding that point—and thus flatly contradicting his own campaign rhetoric—he has adopted the strained “view” that American armed forces are not still engaged in “hostilities or … situations where imminent involvement in hostilities” (i.e., the War Powers Resolution’s triggering requirement), even though (by the White House’s own characterization) U.S. strike sorties are contributing to “the suppression of enemy air defense,” as well as a majority of the coalition’s refueling assets.

    • gmanfortruth says:

      His ego has outdone his schooling. Obama has no business in the White House. He should be booted and the place fumigated.

    • I don’t think he will be impeached either-but which lawyers employed by the government has the job of representing the President?

      • gmanfortruth says:

        Probably the one’s that don’t think lobbing Tomahawk missiles at people is a form hostility.

        • LOL ,but I was wondering if the ones who advised him against this action are the ones who are supposed to represent him if problems arise or the ones who told him it was okay?

  8. gmanfortruth says:

    Sally was driving home from one of her business trips in Northern Arizona when she saw an elderly Navajo woman walking on the side of the road.

    As the trip was a long and quiet one, she stopped the car and asked the Navajo woman if she would like a ride.

    With a silent nod of thanks, the woman got into the car.

    Resuming the journey, Sally tried in vain to make a bit of small talk with the Navajo woman. The old woman just sat silently, looking intently at everything she saw, studying every little detail, until she noticed a brown bag on the seat next to Sally.

    “What in bag?” asked the old woman.

    Sally looked down at the brown bag and said, “It’s a bottle of wine. I got it for my husband.”

    The Navajo woman was silent for another moment or two. Then speaking with the quiet wisdom of an elder, she said:

    “Good trade.”

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Having arrived at the Gates of Heaven, Barrack Obama meets a man with a beard.

      ‘Are you Mohammed?’ he asks. ‘No my son, I am St. Peter; Mohammed is higher Up.’ Peter then points to a ladder that rises into the clouds. Delighted that Mohammed should be higher than St. Peter, Obama climbs the ladder In great strides, climbs up through the clouds and comes into a room where he meets another bearded man. He asks again, ‘Are you Mohammed?’ ‘Why no,’ he answers, ‘I am Moses; Mohammed is higher still.’

      Exhausted, but with a heart full of joy he climbs the ladder yet again, he discovers a larger room where he meets an angelic looking man with a beard. Full of hope, he asks again, ‘Are you Mohammed?’ ‘No, I am Jesus,: you will find Mohammed higher up.’

      Mohammed higher than Jesus! Man, oh man! Obama can hardly contain his delight and climbs and climbs ever higher. Once again, he reaches an even larger room where he meets this truly magnificent looking man with a silver white beard and

      Once again repeats his question: ‘Are you Mohammed?’ he gasps as he is by now, totally out of breath from all his climbing. ‘No, my son, I am Almighty God, the Alpha and the Omega, but you look exhausted. Would you like a cup of coffee?’

      Obama says, ‘yes, please!’ As God looks behind him, he claps his hands and yells out: ‘Hey, Mohammed, two coffees!’

      Keep your trust in God; your President is an idiot!

    • Hee Hee that’s funny

  9. Bottom Line says:

    Impeachment solves nothing. The problem is systemic.

    • Mathius,
      From your own source:
      Treaties entered into by the United States are also considered the supreme law of the land pursuant to the United States Constitution,

      • So what exactly does the treaty with the UN say?

        • And is it a treaty by definition?

        • And is the agreement with NATO different than the treaty or agreement with the UN?

        • Mathius™ says:

          That’s the question, V.. this might all be moot.. I’m just wondering aloud and BF, sans law degree, is butting heads with Buck and me over the hierarchy. He should be digging up the signed treaty and checking if congress permitted the UN and/or NATO to authorize military force.

          • Mathius,

            Because Buck has a degree does not make him right.
            I am sure he did not get 100% on every test – and further, even if he did, doesn’t make what was taught “right” either.

            The Constitution is written in English.
            It is specific and clear.
            I have posted the text.

            • I think you are all right. You just aren’t thinking about the steps. My understanding- President can sign treaties-Congress has to agree for it to be binding-once it is signed it is the law of the land-but we can through Congress or maybe even the Supreme Court-decide to withdraw from it-so in the end -the Constitution is supreme but it is the law of the land until or unless we withdraw. I would also say-that legally the President and Congress authority does not extend pass what is legal per the Constitution so any treaties that go against the Constitution are not legitimate.

              • Any Treaty made by the US is supreme law of the Land period, and is legitimate on its own.

                Congress can ONLY withdraw from the treaty if it does not wish to be BOUND by the treaty.

              • Okay-I can agree with that -any ratified treaty is the law of the land and is legitimate as law, even if it isn’t by the Constitution, until or unless we choose to withdraw from it. But again the President and the Congress is supposed to follow the Constitution per the Constitution-so the only thing I draw from this is that Treaties can be very dangerous binding instruments of law.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Nope, never claimed to get a 100 on every test.

              But I did ace Con Law I, so I’m pretty damn sure I’m right on this one — coincidentally I took an informal survey of my colleagues and all, every single one, agrees with me on this.

              • Buck,

                As I already posited, lawyers get lobotomized early in the education or else they could not possible deal with the constant and continuous contradictions that they have to agree with.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Constant contradictions…care to make a list of some?

      • Mathius™ says:

        “The federal courts have the sole authority to interpret the Constitution and to evaluate the federal constitutionality of federal or state laws. ”

        “Treaties entered into by the United States are also considered the supreme law of the land pursuant to the United States Constitution, as are federal laws. ”

        So, if treaties at the same level as federal laws (“as are federal laws.”), and federal laws are subject to evaluation in light of compliance with the constitution, then it’s clear that the Constitution reigns supreme.

        Put another way:
        Constitution > Federal Law
        Federal Law = Treaties
        Therefore
        Constitution > Treaties

        • Mathius,

          Your interpretation is bizarre.

          If what you say is true, the Constitution saying itself is the law of the land can be interpreted and refuted by SCOTUS who gets their power from the Constitution being the law of the land.

          Treaties are not subservient TO the Constitution.
          They have the same supremacy AS the Constitution

      • Mathius™ says:
      • Mathius™ says:
        • Mathius,

          Nothing of your sources contradicts me, but most certainly contradicts YOU.

          Thus, if a proposed treaty would violate any provision of the Constitution, it may not even be seriously considered or debated, much less be ratified and implemented because the same restrictions that were placed by the Constitution on the U.S. Federal government are also imposed on any treaty provision.

          Exactly what I said – if the US does not wish to be bound by a treaty it will withdraw from it or NOT ratify it.

          It is DOES ratify it, it is SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND

        • Mathius,

          and, oh, please find a better source for your Constitutional thinking then a
          an anesthesiologist in Jackson, Mississippi, and a member of the Editorial Board of the Medical Sentinel

  10. V.H.,

    The UN Charter says:
    All Members, in order to ensure to all of them the rights and benefits resulting from membership, shall fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them in accordance with the present Charter.
    ….
    All Members shall give the United Nations every assistance in any action it takes in accordance with the present Charter, and shall refrain from giving assistance to any state against which the United Nations is taking preventive or enforcement action.

  11. V.H.

    .is it a treaty by definition

    yes

  12. V.H.

    is the agreement with NATO different than the treaty or agreement with the UN

    Yes.

    The chain:
    UN imposed a no-fly zone.

    By treaty, the US is obligated to support it (though what means this “support” is made is open to discussion)

    The US chose direct military action.

    NATO says that the military action against one member requires the support of all members of NATO in defense.

    US strong arms this clause to mean anything the US does requires NATO to defend the US.

  13. V.H.

    I don’t see where the UN authorizing or agreeing that the US can use military force-means the US can do so without following our own laws.

    The chain:
    UN resolution Decides that all States shall deny permission to any aircraft to take off from, land in or overfly their territory,

    UN Charter: as above, requires all States are required to support the UN

    The President, by act of Congress, can initiate military action on his own accord in cases where such conflict is imminent. It is imminent and occurring in Libya and the UN has intervened immediately upon ratification of the resolution, to which the US is both by treaty and by direct agreement to the resolution bound to act.

    The argument that the President acted Unconstitutionally is perverse. He is there by the Constitution, the US is bound by treaty, the UN treaty was ratified by Congress, the UN resolution was ratified by the US.

    What is wrong with the UN, NATO and US attacking Libya is that the UN violated its own charter

  14. I have a solution to it all.

    1. Take the U.S. OUT of the U.N.. We have No interest there except to be hated by the rest of the Nations because we pay the UN’s bills, and are bad mouthed by the UN every time we move. So tell them to stick their UN!

    2. Don’t WORRY about Obama. He is busily digging his own grave and will shoot himself in the ass far faster than anyone else can. (They will NEVER impeach him anyway, so why go to the effort?)

    3. Give a big try at making Laws that cannot be ‘interpreted’. Make them plain enough that no one person can turn them into what thay WANT them to mean.

  15. Buck

    You are right, it is not best to argue with me, since I am right.

    Treaties ARE the Law of THIS LAND “as is” (that is, in THE SAME MANNER) as the Constitution AND Federal Law.

    • It is NOT a hierarchy

      It is a PARALLEL

    • Buck the Wala says:

      :::sigh:::

      Illusions of grandeur much today? Sorry BF, it just doesn’t work the way you want it to.

      • Sorry, Buck, but it works the way I stated, not because I said so, but because that is the way it works.

        Gravity works the way I say it works, because that is the way Gravity works and not just because BF said so.

        • Buck,

          If the US does not like the treaty it is bound by, it can withdraw.

          Until it withdraws, it is bound by it.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            :::sigh:::

            Please see Mathius’ case citation. Yes, the US is bound by a treaty, so long as the treaty does not violate the Constitution (hence a treaty can NEVER supercede the Constitution), or is superceded by a later federal law. But you are dead wrong to say that 1) A treaty supercedes the Constitution and 2) A treaty is the supreme law of the land.

  16. V.H.

    the only thing I draw from this is that Treaties can be very dangerous binding instruments of law

    You are totally and completely correct in your statement!

    • So why do we even sign treaties if 1) rules are already spelled out in the constitution, 2) we can withdraw from them at any time (talk about bait & switch), and 3) they create problems down the line anyway?

  17. Mathius™ says:

    Dear god! There has to be someone here other than Buck and me who knows that Black Flag is stark raving madman!

    Anyone?

    He’s probably wearing a tinfoil hat right now.

    HERE! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reid_v._Covert

    Now go away.

    • Mathius,

      No, you are wrong again.

      The case centered on a conflict of laws and SCOTUS merely directed its ruling in favor of one law over another.

      • the case represents the only time a lawyer lost in the Supreme Court of the United States but prevailed on rehearing.

        So, remember, this is case of SCOTUS changing its mind – and indeed, may change its mind again in the future.

        • Mathius™ says:

          Yes… they changed their mind with Dread Scott, too.. but the fact remains that the most recent ruling is in effect. Do you have a more recent ruling that supersedes this one?

          Otherwise, the Court has made up it’s mind and, oddly, seems to agree with the only registered lawyer at SUFA and the guy whose family tree is comprised of literally dozens lawyers. Go figure.

      • Mathius™ says:

        “It would be manifestly contrary to the objectives of those who created the Constitution, as well as those who were responsible for the Bill of Rights — let alone alien to our entire constitutional history and tradition — to construe Article VI as permitting the United States to exercise power under an international agreement without observing constitutional prohibitions. [Footnote 32]”

        There was a conflict. The Court said that when there’s a conflict, the constitutional prohibitions have to be observed. Therefore it is dominant.

        ::vein in Mathius’ head begins to pulsate::

        • Mathius,
          Nope, sorry, Mathius.

          IF the treaty is ratified, it is Law of the Land, no question or debate – just AS IS the Constitution. There is no hierarchy – it is a PEERSHIP of authority.

          SCOTUS merely asserted a separation of contradictory laws

          • Mathius™ says:

            Where the laws are aligned, it doesn’t matter who is superior. Where they are contradictory, the Court has determined the Constitution rules. Phrase it any way you like, but that’s a hierarchy.

            If you take on a business partner and give him 49% control you could say that you’re “equals” where you agree, if you like – but if there’s a conflict, you, with 51% will win, every time. To your employees, you’re both the law of the land. To other companies, you both are “in charge.” To suppliers and customers, you are both are the law of the land. But if there is a conflict, you win.

            So, in this partnership, is there a hierarchy?

            Yes.

            In fact, you weren’t so sure so you took your partnership contract to someone for arbitration. He initially thought that your partner was in charge but then looked again and decided he was wrong and that you win all arguments.

            You have managers, too, and they’re like federal or state powers. And your partner can overrule them. And you are like the Constitution, ruling the roost.

    • Matt,

      I’m pretty sure Flag is correct on the treaty thing. Stark raving? Debatable.
      As an NRA member, I am aware they have some serious legal heavyweights they use when they appear before the SCOTUS. They will not risk losing a 2nd Amendment case. They also panic every time the UN discussed the Small arms ban treaty that Clinton has stated she would sign. And consider there is no Democrat senate that would ratify such a treaty. The NRA still goes apechit crazy because if ever passed, the 2nd Amendment would be null and void.

    • Mathius™ says:

      .. And from Geofroy v. Riggs (133 U. S. 258):

      The treaty power, as expressed in the Constitution, is in terms unlimited except by those restraints which are found in that instrument [the Constitution] against the action of the government or of its departments, and those arising from the nature of the government itself and of that of the states. It would not be contended that it extends so far as to authorize what the Constitution forbids, or a change in the character of the government, or in that of one of the states, or a cession of any portion of the territory of the latter, without its consent.

      Get that? The treaty is unlimited, except by the restraints of the Constitution.

      Therefore, Constitution > Treaty.

      Can I get a referee in here? I have other things to do today and I don’t want to have to fight with BF all day.

      • Mathius,

        Then the treaty could not be ratified.

        If the treat is ratified, it becomes LAW OF THE LAND pursuant (that is as described) by the Constitution, and sits beside the Constitution in its authority over the citizens of the United States.

        • Mathius™ says:

          These treaties were ratified. Then the court stepped in and overrode them on Constitutional grounds. What about this is confusing you?

          • Mathius,

            I am not confused. You are confused in believing in “hierarchy” of laws – something that simply does not exist in this matter.

            When there is a set of contradictory laws a separation of the contradiction is required.

            You cannot both be legally required to do something and legally prohibited from doing it.

            • Mathius,

              For example, if you are legally required to appear before a Court in the US, but are a member of the armed forces on duty. You cannot legally leave your post, yet your are legally required to appear.

              Both laws as perfectly legitimate and applicable UPON YOU.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              SOURCES AND HIERARCHY OF LAW

              The Constitution.
              The Constitution of the United States is the “supreme law of the land;” it provides the basis for the U.S. government, and guarantees the freedom and rights of all U.S. citizens. No laws may contradict any of the Constitution’s principles and no governmental authority in the U.S. is exempt from complying with it. The federal courts have the sole authority to interpret the Constitution and to evaluate the federal constitutionality of federal or state laws.

              International Treaties.
              Treaties made by the United States are the Supreme law of the land and under the U.S. Constitution, as are federal. In the case of a conflict between a treaty and a federal statute, the one that is later in time or more specific will typically control. Treaties to which the United States is a party may be found in the U.S. Treaties Service, the Statutes at Large, the Treaties and other International Acts Series issued by the State Department, and the United Nations Treaty Series. Treaties are often implemented by federal statutes.

              Federal Statutes.
              Federal Statutes are published first in Slip Law, then in the Statutes at Large and subsequently in the United States Code. An example of a cite to a federal statute is: 42 U.S.C. sec. 9607, which would refer to title 42, section 9607 of the U.S. Code. Federal statutes may be challenged in federal court.

              Agency Rules and Executive Orders.
              Federal administrative bodies issue rules and regulations of a quasi- legislative character; valid federal regulations have the force of law and preempt state laws and rules. Rules and regulations may only be issued under statutory authority granted by Congress.

              But you’re right BF, there’s no such thing as hierarchy….sigh…

    • What am I chop liver-although I only think he’s nuts occasionally and never stark raving mad. 🙂

      • Mathius™ says:

        Chop liver? No, V, you’re more like a perfectly cut and seasoned chateaubriand.

        BF is more like Haggis.

  18. Perhaps if this issue doesn’t do Obama in, Fast & Furious will.

    • Yeah! Wasn’t THAT a collosal clusterf___!!!

      But they will find some minor Justice Official to Scapegoat for that one.

    • What? Fill me in.

      • Got it. For anyone else out of the loop, excerpt from On The Record:

        VAN SUSTEREN: All right, so explain to me what “Fast and Furious” was. How did it actually work?
        DOBYNS: What they did was allowed guns to knowingly fall into the hands and the possession of people that were supplying criminals, narco-terrorist groups. And then they just started counting bodies on the other side of the transactions, hoping that they were going to get to a cartel. They were willing to climb over dead bodies and play God with ATF and with the laws of our agency in order to try to catch a cartel.

        Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/on-the-record/transcript/behind-failure-039operation-fast-and-furious039#ixzz1Q1uyTwy2

        • Mathius™ says:

          Ah.. I thought we were talking about the movie..

          • QUIET! Go deal with BF! 🙂

            • Mathius™ says:

              I was.. but he’s wrong and I’m tired of trying to prove it.. It’s very frustrating and the vein in my head is threatening to pop.

              BTW: I asked my in-house counsel (for my firm, not Buck) and he agreed with me with 100% conviction.

        • What bothers me is that they will NEVER allow anyone important to take a bullet for their collosal malfunction. They will find some unknown sucker without enough influential pals and they will toss his behind to the wolves. And even though everyone will know without doubt that it is pure horsedookey, no one will say a frickin’ WORD.

          • Whats even worse is when people say something, even go to court and get a court judgement-and nothing changes-they just continue to do what they want.

          • The boarder patrol agent, Brian Terry, who was killed….that’s a big deal around my area. He was from a city 15 minutes from me. A group has formed with all intentions of being the whistleblower. Good luck to them.

  19. Buck

    It must be required for lawyers to get a lobotomy before they get their degree

    Supremacy defined:
    Ultimate; final

    Constitution is the ULTIMATE, FINAL law of the Land
    Treaties is the ULTIMATE, FINAL law of the Land.

    You do not understand “hierarchy” at all, sir.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Once again….SIGH!

      • Buck
        I guess you hold a very different and strange definition of “ultimate” and “final” but as I said, lawyers must get lobotomized or else how can they operate within a system completely based on core contradictions in the first place?

        • Mathius™ says:

          In the law, words have specialized meanings. This is established by the use of COMMON LAW.. that is, the case law grows organically and words and terms come to mean things that a plain reading do not always imply. Further, the logic entailed follows it’s own course. Unless you are training (like Buck) or otherwise experienced (like me), it can be very difficult to understand what is meant and how things fit together.

          You have latched onto the words “ultimate” and “final” and you ignore that LAW is constructed by STATUTORY LAW (legislated laws) and CASE LAW (organically grown by courts and via implementation). The case law of the highest court – the one charged with determining such things – has has determined that treaties have to be in compliance with Constitutional authority. If they are not, they are invalidated (or, if severability applies, they are selectively invalidated).

          That’s the way these things work in this country.

  20. gmanfortruth says:

    Interesting chat. I think BF made a statement that should be better understood. I looked at our treaty with the UN before writing this article. As BF said, the UN violated there own charter, which the U.S. agreed too. That violation would make the treaty invalid. Obama violated the law, simple.

    • GMan,

      Bingo!

    • That was the original question wasn’t it-so putting aside the UN violating it’s charter for a minute-was there anything in there which makes you believe that just because the UN wants it-means our President has the right to override our Constitution. I read what BF posted but as he said how one supports something is up for debate and I don’t see where that gives the President the right to bypass the constraints put on him by our laws.

      • Oh and to what are you referring when you say they violated their charter-going past just the no fly zone or something else?

        • V.H.

          you say they violated their charter

          Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such matters to settlement under the present Charter;

          • Then support is not mandatory-exceptions are written in and the word support is debatable-where in any of this does the President have the right not to talk to Congress.

            • V.H.

              In my review, the problem is not whether or not the President can act or not – it is clear by legislative authority, he can and well within the definitions of that authority.

              The problem is that the UN contradicted its own charter in this matter.

              • The question isn’t will he or can he get away with it-it is- is it legal. So what in the defining of his authority gives him legal authority?

      • V.H.

        Where do you believe the President “overrode” the Constitution.

        Congress granted the President military authority to act where the need was “immediate” or “imminent” and in both cases, these conditions existed.

  21. I just thought about something-I still don’t think that treaties are parallel to the Constitution-but the words “any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.” Does seem to elevate treaties a step above Federal Laws because per the Constitution it seems to be saying only Congress can cancel them. ???????????

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Treaties are basically parallel with federal laws — if there is a contradiction, later in time governs. In other words, a treaty trumps preexisting federal law; subseqent law trumps the treaty.

      • Okay, I get that-Congress can withdraw or deem the treaty void with new law-but it still seems to be saying that the Supreme court cannot legally deem the treaty unconstitutional because per these words the Constitution has said it doesn’t have to be constitutional. This seems so contradictory and crazy-I am having a hard time accepting what I am reading-actually hoping I am somehow wrong.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          VH, just as SCOTUS can declare a federal law unconstitutional, so can SCOTUS declare a treaty unconstitutional. You cannot use a treaty to amend the Constitution – that requires an Amendment to the Constitution.

          • That is what I have always believed-so what do these words mean? “any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Don’t worry about that; pretty much meaningless fluff!

              SCOTUS has the right and ability to declare any federal law and international treaty unconstitutional. This is where hierarchy comes into play — SCOTUS can never rule a provision in the Constitution or an Amendment unconstitutional, regardless of what it says, which is why the Constitution is the supreme law of the land. Federal laws and treaties are always subject to the Constitution.

              • I can’t believe you just said “meaningless fluff” after all the debates on the importance of disecting every word and line of the constitution to figure out it’s meaning which you demand. 🙂 and hee hee , I didn’t say anything about Scotus having the ability to say the Constitution is its self unconstitutional -that was the whole point of my question actually.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                There is plenty of importance to certain words; others get chalked up to ‘meaningless fluff’ (and yes, that is the legal definition!)

                🙂

            • V.H.

              “any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

              It means exactly what you think it means.

              Note it specifically addresses two things, the Constitution and the Laws of a State.

              Is says that treaties are the supreme law IN SPITE OF the Constitution and IN SPITE OF in any Law of a State.

              But Buck the lawyer wants you to ignore this as fluff.

  22. Mathius,

    terms come to mean things that a plain reading do not always imply.

    What utterly bizarre thinking!

    Plain words do not imply what the say!

    Unless you are training (like Buck) or otherwise experienced (like me), it can be very difficult to understand what is meant and how things fit together.

    Yes, lawyers get a lobotomy so that plain words and direct language becomes difficult to understand!

    You are a card!

    You have latched onto the words “ultimate” and “final”

    “latched on”! ROTFLOL!

    Gee, it is the definition of the word but to you that is “latching on” like I am missing the real meaning!

    The case law of the highest court – the one charged with determining such things – has has determined that treaties have to be in compliance with Constitutional authority.

    No.
    They have merely separated contradictions between TWO ULTIMATE authority.

    That’s the way these things work in this country.

    No wonder everyone is confused

  23. Mathius,

    This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

    So can you and the lobotomized Buck explain the highlighted text for the rest of us “confused” people.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Take a closer look at that last clause there BF, particularly that semi-colon.

      It is saying that the STATE JUDGES cannot exercise jurisdiction over such matters. In other words, it is laying out the HIERARCHY of the system — federal (Constitution then treaties/federal laws then executive orders) then states. Only SCOTUS has jurisdiction over federal questions.

      • Buck,

        You are an easy man to trap, sir 8)

        So let’s do focus on those semi-colons that you apparently now believe is VITAL in reading this clause.

        There is one here:
        “…. ;and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land;…”

        the word is “AND” and no where, sir, NO WHERE is the world “THEN” in the entire clause.

        You are making it up as you go, aren’t you??? 🙂

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Not in the slightest. You are just keen on ignoring SCOTUS precedent, which has expressly ruled on the hierarchy of the Constitution/Treaty/Federal Law/Executive Order/State Law. You just choose to ignore this fact.

          • Mathius™ says:

            Black Flag skipped class that day to go to the beach.

          • Buck

            Not in the slightest. You are just keen on ignoring SCOTUS precedent,

            Correct. I do ignore lobotomized men “interpretation” of common English sentences.

            which has expressly ruled on the hierarchy of the Constitution/Treaty/Federal Law/Executive Order/State Law. You just choose to ignore this fact

            It is a fact that they are lobotomized.
            It is also a fact that they have ruled.
            It is not a fact that they are right.

        • gmanfortruth says:

          Just mt input. The clause you are stateing has these words. “under the Authority of the United States,” The authority of the United States is only in existance because of the Constitution. It clearly outlines the authority of the president. He does not and has never had the authority to deploy our armed forces without congressional permission, period. With the exception of an attack or immentent attck, Obama has nothing.

          His actions were totally against our laws, treaties be damned because they do not grant him authority in any way. Nowhere in the UN treaty is this power granted. Our Constitution is very clear.

      • Now that makes perfect sense-can’t believe I didn’t notice that the statement was limited to the states. That clears up my confusion 🙂

  24. Buck

    Don’t worry about that; pretty much meaningless fluff!

    ROFLOL!!

    Yep, they wasted a lot of words in the document that are wholly unnecessary and meaningless – about 4400 of them by last count according the the lawyers!

    LOL!!!

  25. It’s really too bad JAC isn’t around today-I think he would have enjoyed this topic of conversation. But I must get out of this chair and go work out before I become permanently glued.

  26. Buck

    care to make a list of some

    (1) The big first one:
    That government makes all laws.
    Government enforces all its laws.
    Government will make laws against itself and enforce these laws upon itself.

    You believe this is true, right?

    • Buck the Wala says:

      No. But nice try.

      • gmanfortruth says:

        Buck,

        In a rare case, I agree with you on the treaty matter. Treaties are agreements between nations, they do not grant special powers to the President. It is and always will an act of Congress that can put our troops into any action against a foreign nation, the exception being a direct attack as outlined in the War Powers Act.

        I think Black Flag may correct in many ways, but he fails when it comes to the Powers of the President and treaties.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          In a rare case? We’ve been known to agree on issues in the past, ya know.

        • Gman,

          Treaties are agreements between nations,

          True.

          they do not grant special powers to the President.

          Well, they could, but the UN Charter does not.

          It is and always will an act of Congress that can put our troops into any action against a foreign nation, the exception being a direct attack as outlined in the War Powers Act.

          As defined by treaties, both of NATO and UN, created a circumstance where a direct attack was imminent, which more than satisfies the War Powers Act.

          I think Black Flag may correct in many ways, but he fails when it comes to the Powers of the President and treaties.

          I am confident I have not failed my knowledge.

          • gmanfortruth says:

            Flagster,

            You said “As defined by treaties, both of NATO and UN, created a circumstance where a direct attack was imminent, which more than satisfies the War Powers Act.”

            I agree with you 100 %, so who exactly was Libya going to attack? No one. You and I both know this whole thing is funded by the CIA and MI6. Quaddafi didn’t want to play with the bankers, and anyone who knows anything understands this. Despite all of this, Obama ordered our military into action, without probable cause within U.S. laws or the UN treaty. There is no treaty that has been agreed to and passed that changes the powers of the President or Congress. I have presented that in great detail. Claiming that a treaty can do that without specific wording of such treaty does not make this dog hunt.

            I like you anyway 🙂

      • Buck,
        Government makes the laws. True or False.
        Government enforces the laws. True or False.

  27. Buck,

    You are a funny guy, which is why you are a lawyer.

    A while back you held that SCOTUS interprets the Constitution – yet the world interpret does not exist at all anywhere in the Constitution.

    You hold that some sort of hierarchy exists, Constitution THEN treaty THEN federal law THEN state law, yet the word “then” is only used in the Constitution to describe procedures of voting.

    You do have a tendency to manufacture words into documents where they do not appear 🙂

  28. Mathius says:

    Can I get a straight up and down vote on who here agrees with Buck and me (correctly) that the Constitution trumps treaties (as confirmed by at least two Supreme Court cases I’ve cited here today) and who is, like Black Flag, wearing tinfoil hats?

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Mathius,

      I have studied this subject very definatively. There is nothing written that absolutely supports Flags position, but he is not totally wrong. I agree with you the the Constitution trumps everything, including treaties. Our founders were careful to make sure that no one man could wield the power of the military, large or small. To believe otherwise is hogwash.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @Mathius – I agree with you sir (and Buck). Think of this as a pyramid with the Constitution as the point – everything must flow from this point.

    • I’m with Flag as I posted above.

      • gmanfortruth says:

        LOI,

        I’ve read a lot on the gun treaty issue. It would never pass Congress, that would be a political death sentence. Considering most gun owners are fed up with the Feds anyway, any attempt at screwing with the 2nd Amendment would be met very harshly.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          The gun treaty issue is a completely different issue.

          The NRA opposes any form of gun control whatsoever and would (and do) similarly oppose any type of international treaty that addresses such. This does not mean that the NRA believes such a treaty would supercede the Constitution and 2d Amendment though. This just means the NRA continues to oppose any form of gun control whatsoever.

          • Gun control in other countries has no bearing on the NRA or it’s actions. Only something that impacts the individual right to bear arms is an issue for them. They are a single issue organization.

            http://www.nraila.org/Legislation/Federal/Read.aspx?id=5224

            The NRA has been engaged at the United Nations and elsewhere internationally in response to anti-small arms initiatives for over 14 years. In most cases, agendas for the elimination of private ownership of firearms are disguised as calls for international arms control to stem the flow of illicit military weapons. These instruments are generally promoted by a small group of nations and a large number of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) working in conjunction with departmental bureaucracies in multi-national institutions such as the UN and European Union.

            The new U.S. administration, to no one’s surprise, has changed direction in the UN with respect to international small arms control initiatives that were resisted by the previous administration.

            The current issue under discussion, the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), is in the early stages of the negotiation process. There is no actual draft text at this time. Work on the ATT is scheduled to continue by a consensus process between now and 2012. It should be noted that any treaty must be approved by two thirds of the U.S. Senate for ratification.

            Attempts to thwart our freedoms should be no surprise, given the anti-gun climate of the international community in general, and the current U.S. administration in particular.

            More generally, the NRA does not concern itself with foreign policy or arms control initiatives—except to the extent they would directly or indirectly affect Second Amendment rights.

            We have been actively opposing transnational efforts that would limit Second Amendment freedoms. For many years, NRA has been monitoring and actively fighting any credible attempts on the part of the UN to restrict our sovereignty and gun rights.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Bringing this discussion back to the issue of whether a treaty can supercede the constitution though…

              If such a treaty was ratified, this does NOT mean the treaty would supercede the constitution and 2d Amendment. It would need to survive a constitutional challenge. It could only survive a constitutional challenge if SCOTUS found the treaty to be in line with the 2d Amendment (which, given the current make up of the court, and the recent decision that the 2d Amendment protects an individual right to bear arms (albeit subject to certain reasonable, although unknown at the present time, restrictions), would not happen.

              • Buck-we can discuss this on what is legal or on how we interpret the Constitution-but please don’t try to say that what is legal or ones interpretation means anything-the court is political and one never knows what they will do.

              • Didn’t make my point very well-lets try again-Bottom line- treaties are very powerful dangerous laws, which can affect our lives in very negative ways and we cannot trust those in power not to twist the meanings around in order to do what they want to do.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Perhaps some treaties are very powerful and dangerous laws. But treaties in and of themselves are not. In a way, they are even less dangerous than any other federal law as they require ratification, which can be a much more onerous procedure than simply passing a bill by majority vote.

        • GMan,

          I agree it would never pass, but consider the NRA’s stance. With all their legal experts, they believe any treaty passed could or would null and void the 2nd amendment. So I am saying, the NRA’s legal experts think Flag is right!

          • Buck the Wala says:

            See above, but that is not what the NRA has concluded. The NRA is fearful that SCOTUS could find the treaty, depending on its scope and terms, to be in line with the 2d Amendment. Not that it would nullify the 2d Amendment. It can’t.

            • Buck,

              I understand what you are saying. I do not agree.

              Also, “It would need to survive a constitutional challenge.” That means it would become law and enforced before a suit could be brought. That means millions of Americans might loose their rights for the years it takes to bring a suit. Also, they have already ruled the 2nd amendment is not an absolute, that some limits may be placed on it. Ex. machine guns are now restricted. Gun banners would love to add pistols to the restricted list. After all, who hunts with a pistol? Then in ten or twenty years, they would try to restrict rifles, since a shotgun can be used for nearly all hunting.
              It’s so reasonable……….

              • Buck the Wala says:

                It would need to survive a constitutional challenge…

                Just like any law passed by Congress. Would you also argue that federal law trumps the Constitution?

  29. Unless the UN and NATO can order the president of a sovereign country to initiate war activities against another sovereign nation, then all this about the Constitution and treaties is moot. Sending troops in is a voluntary and discretionary act. As such the the authority rests in Congress solely and in the President through the exceptions granted to him by Congress in the War Powers Act. Since we were not attacked and no US vital interests were involved and the 60 days are up, he needs Congressional authorization to continue. Until that authorization is given, all activities in N. Africa should stop immediately. If Congress had the cajones, they would so order this to happen until it has been properly debated and voted on.

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Obama had no authority to order this to begin with. The Joint Chiefs need to step back and realize this. After that I agree with you.

      • That is an interesting tack. The generals are obligated first to protect and defend the Constitution and then to obey the CinC. I would hope the Constitution has supremacy. I wonder if the question ever came up in meetings. The president has the authority to engage the military for 60 days under certain conditions. If those conditions are not met, can/should the Joint Chiefs ask Congress directly for clarification. In the case of war, one should not be asking for forgiveness after the fact.

        • gmanfortruth says:

          Correct. This is an ugly situation that may get uglier. I have heard some scuttlebutt that the first Cav Division is training for a ground invasion of Libya in October/November. Many of the younger troops that I have heard said that they won’t go without Congerssional approval. There is trouble brewing within the ranks, good for us, bad for Obama and the rest of the corrupt ass clowns.

          • I agree, it would be one thing for the Joint Chiefs to ask Congress discreetly for direction and another for the lower echelons to refuse orders. Is there any historical precedence for such a broad refusal in US history? I know of none. Certainly the Oath Keepers would back the soldiers as would many Americans. Would Obama be so stupid as to let this happen? At one time I gave him more credit than that but not any longer. If Gates and others forced the decision on Osama and Hillary and others forced the decision on Libya, this man may not be able to act when it is called for especially if it could embarrass himself. Gen. McChrystal and his staff certainly did not have much respect for Obama. How many others are there?
            If such a thing were to occur, other countries would see Obama as a weakened President and take advantage of the situation. I doubt if they have much respect for him already. But to be proven openly to be helpless would unleash the dogs. Nov. 2012 can’t get here soon enough.

            • gmanfortruth says:

              T-Ray.

              An entire National Guard unit refused orders to disarm people in New Orleans after Katrina. I will have to do some searching, but it’s on the Oathkeepers site. I’m starting to here alot about discontent with Obama. We could be on the cusp of a non-violent revoluion by the military. Many are fed up and don’t know why there fighting any more. Can’t blame them either.

              It’s time for change, big time, if the troops say no, that would be a great start.

  30. Ray Hawkins says:

    “Michelle Bachmann’s Holy War”

    (my own title would be – Why the hell should I even vote in 2012?)

    “Even other Republicans, it seems, are making the mistake of laughing at Bachmann. But consider this possibility: She wins Iowa, then swallows the Tea Party and Christian vote whole for the next 30 or 40 primaries while Romney and Pawlenty battle fiercely over who is the more “viable” boring-white-guy candidate. Then Wall Street blows up again — and it’s Barack Obama and a soaring unemployment rate versus a white, God-fearing mother of 28 from the heartland.”

    From Matt Taibbi’s piece on Michelle Bachmann. Good article, always love his style – good laugh and good think to have with my Red Bull.

    More…..

    “Bachmann lies because she can’t help it, because it’s a built-in component of both her genetics and her ideology. She is at once the most entertaining and the most dangerous kind of liar, a turbocharged cross between a born bullshit artist and a religious fanatic, for whom lying to the infidel is a kind of holy duty.”

    “In 2009, after she saw a news story about the Chinese calling on the world to abandon the dollar as its reserve currency, Bachmann somehow took this to mean that the Obama administration might force ordinary Americans to abandon their familiar green dollar bills for some international and no doubt atheist currency. To combat this possibility, Bachmann introduced a resolution to “bar the dollar from being replaced by any foreign currency.” Even after the gaffe was made public, Bachmann pressed on, challenging Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner to “categorically renounce the United States moving away from the dollar.” Imagine Joe McCarthy dragging Cabinet members into hearings and demanding that they publicly disavow the works of Groucho Marx, and you get a rough idea of the general style of Bachmannian politics.”

    http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/michele-bachmanns-holy-war-20110622?page=1

    • In an appearance promoting the Bachmann piece on Wednesday’s “Imus in the Morning” program on the Fox Business Network, Taibbi offered one reason he was rooting for a Bachmann Republican presidential nomination – the porn films it would inspire.

      “Actually, yeah, I’m actually kind of rooting for her to win the nomination, because I can’t wait to see the porn movies that they make,” Taibbi said. “Bachmann-inspired films are going to be great.”

      Aside from the pornography angle and his liberal bias against Bachmann, Taibbi explained why the Minnesota congresswoman should be taken seriously.

      “I mean, who didn’t see ‘Nailin’ Palin’ – that was classic cinema,” he continued. “And so this is basically sort of a big profile on Michele Bachmann and spent about a month kind of following her around a little bit and the basic thesis is that, you know, she is — everybody laughs at her, she’s hilariously funny, but she’s got a shot. She’s got a real shot of winning the nomination. It’s just kind of laid out for her perfectly. She really could easily take Iowa. Romney is not really competing there. She’s got Mike Huckabee’s organization. She’s got a lot of support in that state and then after that, you know, she’s got the Tea Party contingent backing her and Romney and Paul could split the vote after that, it could really happen.”

      Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/06/22/rolling-stones-taibbi-rooting-for-bachmann-to-see-what-porn-films-are-inspired/#ixzz1Q6b3b8zY

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        I do think she has a shot – like or not.

        I don’t know that Taibbi is full of liberal bias – 3 years ago maybe – but some of writing as been equally harsh on the left.

        Its the porn comments that make it a little harder to take him 100% seriously.

        • 100% seriously-Please tell me why I would bother to take him seriously at all. Is the man interested in actually talking politics or just sprewing crude, extreme, sensationalized garbage. I realize that there is alot of crap floating around and it’s hard to find articles that don’t contain just button pushing nastiness-but please-this guy doesn’t deserve to have a readership.

          • Scientist develop a theory and then try to test it to see if it’s correct. Hitman journalist make up a theory and look for any statement or event that they can use to prove that theory. Some of them are floating a line about how can anyone “prove” Bachmann has never had an abortion.

          • Terry Evans says:

            I am with you V…this guy is way out there on a good day…seriously, the Rolling Stone???

            • I meant to put the word some button pushing nastiness-instead of just-would have made more sense. But really, I can be offended and still read what someone thinks but if they make me want to just slap them upside the head-offend me-no thank you.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            He actually has a very good readership. I read his most recent book, Griftopia, which was well researched – could have gone deeper than he did but it was still a good informative read.

            Its ok to be put off by his delivery – some people don’t like Jon Stewart either because of the way he uses comedy.

            But you’re free to debate/discuss any of the points he makes in the article.

            • I like Jon Stewart fine-I don’t dismiss him just because I don’t normally agree with him-but Bill Maher-him I dismiss. And I did discuss points from the article-or rather I asked YOUR opinion-I don’t dismiss you even if I dismiss the person who wrote the article. 🙂

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                See below……

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Why do you outright dismiss Bill Maher?

              • Mathius™ says:

                What’s wrong with Maher?

              • For all the reasons I dismiss the author above and because he outright dismisses me. Because he hardly ever says anything I agree with and even when he did-I disagreed with the way he said it-because he is an irritating, arrogant ………………………………………….!!!

              • Another fill in the blank? I choose Assclown! Mathius?

            • MILLER: Speaking of crazy right-wing newspaper columns, in the Washington Examiner a syndicated columnist, Cal Thomas, claimed that Palin along with Bachmann get a lot of media attention because they represent everything the liberal media hate. They’re attractive women who are married to the same men they started with. He went onto write, in Palin’s case she and her husband have a Down syndrome child who she refused to abort. Right there you have to offend pro-choice feminists who treat abortion as a sacrament.

              LAVOIE: Oh! There are so many things wrong with that piece.

              MILLER: Yeah, where do you even start there? We hate them because they haven’t been divorced or had abortions, which apparently …

              SPARKS: No, that’s actually why Newt Gingrich hates them.

              LAVOIE: Yeah, Michelle Obama hasn’t been divorced and hasn’t had an abortion. As far as we know.

              MILLER: Yeah, yeah. I don’t, hmm …

              LAVOIE: And how do we know that Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann have never had an abortion?

              MILLER: Yes!

              LAVOIE: Do we know that?! I think Cal Thomas is making a giant assumption there.

              Read more: http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/jack-coleman/2011/06/21/stephanie-miller-and-her-producer-ponder-how-do-we-know-palin-and-bach#ixzz1Q76AMK66

    • Serious question-Please read these two articles and explain why you believe her proposing this law is so stupid. From my understanding we already have a law which is supposed to protect our currency-so someone else at some point must have thought this wasn’t a stupid idea-but what Michele wanted to pass would protect this law from possibly being usurped by treaty. Which fits rather nicely into todays discussion. 🙂

      Bachmann (MN-6) RESOLUTION to BAN WORLD Currency in U.S.
      Submitted by HonorGod on Thu, 03/26/2009 – 20:07

      Bachmann Demands Truth: Will Obama Administration Abandon Dollar for a Multi-National Currency?
      http://bachmann.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentI

      Washington, D.C., Mar 25 – In response to suggestions by China, Russia, and other countries around the world calling on the International Monetary Fund to explore a multi-national currency, U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann (MN-6) has introduced a resolution that would bar the dollar from being replaced by any foreign currency.

      “Yesterday, during a Financial Services Committee hearing, I asked Secretary Geithner if he would denounce efforts to move towards a global currency and he answered unequivocally that he would,” said Bachmann. “And President Obama gave the nation the same assurances. But just a day later, Secretary Geithner has left the option on the table. I want to know which it is. The American people deserve to know.”

      http://www.dailypaul.com/87724/bachmann-mn-6-resolution-to-ban-world-currency-in-us

      Geithner ‘open’ to China proposal – Ben Smith: Geithner ‘open’ to China proposal
      March 25, 2009
      Categories:

      * White House

      Geithner ‘open’ to China proposal

      Geithner, at the Council on Foreign Relations, said the U.S. is “open” to a headline-grabbing proposal by the governor of the China’s central bank, which was widely reported as being a call for a new global currency to replace the dollar, but which Geithner described as more modest and “evolutionary.”

      “I haven’t read the governor’s proposal. He’s a very thoughtful, very careful distinguished central banker. I generally find him sensible on every issue,” Geithner said, saying that however his interpretation of the proposal was to increase the use of International Monetary Fund’s special drawing rights — shares in the body held by its members — not creating a new currency in the literal sense.

      “We’re actually quite open to that suggestion – you should see it as rather evolutionary rather building on the current architecture rather than moving us to global monetary union,” he said.

      “The only thing concrete I saw was expanding the use of the [special drawing rights],” Geithner said. “Anything he’s thinking about deserves some consideration.”

      The continued use of the dollar as a reserve currency, he added, “depends..on how effective we are in the United States…at getting our fiscal system back to the point where people judge it as sustainable over time.”

      President Obama flatly rejected the notion of a new global currency at last night’s press conference.

      UPDATE: Evidently sensing a gaffe, moderator Roger Altman told Geithner that it would be “useful” to return to the question, and asked if he foresaw a change in the dollar’s centrality.

      “I do not,” Geithner said, adding several forceful promises, including, “We will do what’s necessary to say we’re sustaining confidence in our financial mark

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        @VH

        The “idea” floated was to replace the dollar as the RESERVE currency – NOT to replace the U.S. Dollar as our domestic form of currency no? If that is the case then her resolution was indeed a waste of time – am sure she is also well aware of the likelihood of her resolution passing the sniff test (and Congressional vote test) to become an Amendment.

        She’s an attention grabber VH.

        Plain and simple.

        • Well of course she’s an attention grabber-most people who want to be the President are-but pointing out that our policies are endangering the dollar. And that the world seems determined to replace it as the reserve currency. Which when combined could lead to the dollar going belly up and being replaced-doesn’t seem all that far fetched to me.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            @VH – I suppose we can concoct any sequence of events that seem plausible and therefore in need of a Constitutional Amendment. But again – it was a NON-ISSUE – Bachmann distorted the facts as they were presented. No one was ever talking about replacing the dollar with the Yen as our domestic currency. She introduced that bit of insanity and for some reason folks still cling to it as factual when it is not.

            • But that is where we differ-you see it as a non-issue. I see it as someone shining a spot light on a problem. I don’t care that the bill wouldn’t pass-I look at our history and I see people ignoring what was happening until it happened and then it’s too late. As far as the rest of his article-I will read it this weekend and I will be researching all the candidates before the primary-just from skimming the article-there is too much to be able to discuss it now all at once. I did find his saying she left the charter school because her Parents told her too-more than a little suspect 🙂 but I will as time permits-research his points.

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          @VH – further…..

          Taibbi does a nice job of underscoring Bachmann’s statements with respect to the influence of religion on her decision making, career path, goals and objective – in her own words. I think that is important for voters to know.

          Her comments on gays are at minimal – completing disturbing. (http://www.thebachmannrecord.com/thebachmannrecod.html)

          • Will have to get back to this later-I have to leave-but just one quick comment-you want me to read what 6 pages of this man’s obvious sarcastic perspective on religion 🙂 I only just realized that you hadn’t posted the whole article and I can’t read all that right now-but I will force myself to do so. 🙂 Later

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              @VH – its his skepticism over Bachmann’s statements with respect to religious matters.

  31. Would anybody care to know what was taught to us (field grade officers) on interpreting international law and treaties versus our own Constitution when we worked directly with the UN and NATO in Brussels? Or…………………………………….should I just sit back and watch all the bantering about on the term “hierarchy of laws”.

    • I might add that we were required to attend classes on this very subject since we were going to working directly with these things while on staff. I did manage to stay awake through most of it and have notes here.

    • Mathius™ says:

      Would anybody care to know what was taught to us (field grade officers) on interpreting international law and treaties versus our own Constitution when we worked directly with the UN and NATO in Brussels? I’m guessing the answer was “Don’t.”

      Am I close?

      • Actually…no sir…you are in the area that most of us wished….however, the reason we had to sit in classes which were taught by….**ahem** supposedly international lawyers from the United States, Germany, England, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, and Austria. (Please do not ask me why these were there, I do not know). I just know which nationalities as I am reading through my notes.

        One of the main reasons were that a lot of us “field” officers had problems with orders being issued that may have violated our Constitution in following orders from other non US field commanders, whose understanding of their laws were different than ours.

        Interested or no.

    • Yes, I believe I would.

  32. Canine Weapon says:

    Hmm… it seems that the Czechs know a thing or two about how to handle political discontentment..

    • Pooch, what made you stray onto that page?

      • Canine Weapon says:

        I was threatening to defenestrate someone (*cough* Feline Weapon *cough*) and didn’t know how to spell the word, so I punched it into Google for a spell check.. then, go figure, the Wikipedia article caught my eye.

  33. Ok….for what it is worth and I did just confirm this to see if it has changed any. This is in retrospect to interpretation when the United States is in a treaty situation and the treaty violates or seemingly violates the United States Constitution.

    The Constitution of the United States is supreme over all other laws and treaties, international or otherwise, (otherwise = state and local jurisdictional laws or amendments thereof). According to our training, no international law, no treaty, no local jurisdiction requires nor can require a Constitutional violation by American Uniformed Personnel. This is a change, somewhat, that occurred in Bosnia in 1996-97. It goes further to state, that in the event that the US Constitution is contradictory or, in effect, contradictory to any International Law or treaty, then the treaty is to be null and void by reason of withdrawal and withdrawal is usually automatic.

    Please, do not shoot the messenger. This is in effect today. It is far reaching in that an American Officer has the ability to render a treaty null and void, in a sense, by not violating the US Constitution in a foreign country. Very interesting, don’t you think?

    • Mathius™ says:

      Uh oh.. sounds like another member of the Mathius/Buck/Ray/VH coalition..

      Think BF will ever admit he’s wrong? 🙂

      • Buck the Wala says:

        no.

      • Mathius,
        Buck is right in saying “no”, because I am not wrong.

        Pay attention.

        Though D13 says this
        “According to our training, no international law, no treaty, no local jurisdiction requires nor can require a Constitutional violation by American Uniformed Personnel. This is a change, somewhat, that occurred in Bosnia in 1996-97. It goes further to state, that in the event that the US Constitution is contradictory or, in effect, contradictory to any International Law or treaty, then the treaty is to be null and void by reason of withdrawal and withdrawal is usually automatic.”

        He is NOT explaining the underlying legal reasoning, he is explaining an outcome. The lawyers did not go through the nuances of such matters, but told them the consequences of separating the contradictions as I pointed to above.

        You cannot both be prohibited and required to act in some manner.

        Thus, the US military dictates that in contradiction, pick “ours” and “not theirs”.

        This separating the contradictions DOES NOT IMPUTE the ultimate, final authority invoked by treaties

        Further, this is precisely correct in describing the underlying resolution to a contradiction:
        contradictory to any International Law or treaty, then the treaty is to be null and void by reason of withdrawal and withdrawal is usually automatic.

        • Mathius™ says:

          ::sigh:: Does anyone know how to perform a stubborn-ectomy?

          the US military dictates that in contradiction, pick “ours” and “not theirs”.

          How do you define ultimate, final authority as between two competing documents, except by seeing which rules when they contradict each other?

          He is NOT explaining the underlying legal reasoning, he is explaining an outcome.

          Yes, but the outcome is determined by the underlying legal reasoning.

          If the underlying legal reasoning said that a treaty was superior then the outcome would be that the military would have told D13 to follow the treaty and ignore the Constitution. If they were equal, they would have gone into an explanation of how to determine which to follow in specific instances. But they didn’t. They said follow the Constitution. Why? Because it’s always the controlling document.

          Do I have to pull out my Glen Beck chalkboard?

          • Mathius,

            the US military dictates that in contradiction, pick “ours” and “not theirs”.

            How do you define ultimate, final authority as between two competing documents, except by seeing which rules when they contradict each other?

            First, they are NOT competing which is why you are confused.

            The are PEERS (has equal standing)

            They do NOT compete (a state of rivalry), they may contradict (asserting the opposite).

            Take a step back and think of this:
            Federal Law, one statute says “Mathius must stand on his head” and another statute says “Mathius is prohibited from standing on his head”.

            You have agreed that Federal Law is an “ultimate” authority. But the root of your argument is that one “statute” is “more ultimate” then another “statute”.

            But that is a bizarre understanding – both laws are authoritative, legitimate, valid and equally enforceable upon you – but logically cannot be enforced at the same time – therefore, there must be a separation of the contradiction

            Yes, but the outcome is determined by the underlying legal reasoning.

            NO!

            There is NO legal reasoning to place one ultimate law over another ultimate law in contradiction.

            It is arbitrary!

            Do I have to pull out my Glen Beck chalkb

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Colonel,

      Great input. That has been my belief all along, but couldn’t remember the lesson from basic training. One only needs to read the oath that is taken to see that treaties do not circumvent the Constitution. While there is a good coalition who think the same, I believe I have made a strong case against Obama. Is he within our laws in your mind?

      • DOn’t you just love watching these neophytes trying to argue down BF? Not going to happen! You can sooner argue with a Oak Tree.

        • Mathius™ says:

          Neophytes? I’ve been here since August 17, 2009. For those keeping score that makes today my 675th day as an official SUFA-ite.

          Neophyte.. bah!

          Yea, yea, I know it’s like arguing with an oak tree or that I might as well debate a stone wall, but next time he makes a claim like this, he’s going to research it first instead of just jumping in with a preconceived notion that he’s going to have to defend. He knows – KNOWS he’s wrong, but he’ll never admit it.

          I forget who said it, the other day: I have “lost” far more fights with him than I’ve won.. but he sure knew he was in a fight.

          • USWeapon says:

            You stopped being a neophyte to me a long time ago, my friend

            It’s fun watching all of us SUFA regulars attempting to but heads with old titanium skulled BF….

          • Twas I, and I stand by that statement. Flag ignored my last post on Defense of Israel, I kinda count that as an admission of a draw, if not defeat.

            “Do I have to pull out my Glen Beck chalkb/”
            Do what you feel you have to, but ask yourself, do you feel lucky?

  34. OUCH! Precious metals are nosediving! BF..make them go up again!

    • Mathius™ says:

      Anita / anyone,

      I have some gold leaf sheets I’d like to sell. Kitco informs me that they are not buying leaf. Any thoughts? Should I just melt it down myself?

      • That’s one option, so is Pawn Stars, so is returning them to where you bought them.

        • Mathius™ says:

          Didn’t buy them.. rescued them from someone who was going to throw them away. I’m actually going to be in Vegas in two weeks.. maybe I will stop by and see if the Old Man is interested. If you see a guy on the show selling gold leaf (and driving a hard bargain), that’s Mathius.

          Any other suggestions?

      • Kitco is no longer selling or buying to/from US citizens.

        Sell them to your jeweler.

        • Why did they stop??

          • V.H.

            A new law in the US to stop “speculators” prevents anyone lending money to someone who will then use that to buy a commodity, but has no intention of taking delivery.

            When you go to a broker, you can buy 100% of a contract for, say, 10% of its worth – this is called a “margin”. In strictest terms the broker is lending you his money and his collateral is your contract. When you sell your contract, he gets his money back, and you get 100% profit (or loss).

            Now, you must put down 100% if you do not intend to take delivery buy merely sell out your contract.

            But many brokers are concerned that any sale could be construed to be like “lending” money, so they are stopping any dealing with Americans, period.

    • Anita,

      Do not watch daily machinations of precious metal prices – understand the fundamentals of long term cause/effect.

      Fiat money is collapsing everywhere, but not everywhere at the same time.

      The Euro is going away, so “smart” money is moving somewhere else.
      It will move where is it safer and easier.

      In a reverse-beauty contest, the US$ is safer right now and but key, very easy to move to. Gold is needs delivery, is heavy and bulky and needs insurance and storage fees. US$ are electronic digits.

      But the US$ is equally doomed, but not right now.

      The musical chair game stops one day, and it will stop at the US$.

      The Smart money is “drifting” into non-fiat commodities – such as gold – especially outside of the US and the new federal law attempting to stop “speculators” will devastate the commodity market in the US, and make the US economy collapse sooner and faster.

      You do not have the liquidity of “smart” money, so do not pay attention to their short term bounces and dips.

      Stick to long term fundamentals, close your lock box, stop counting illusionary costs or profits, and do the best you can today doing what you do.

  35. This is interesting-Posted it more on the basis of the discussion of a treaty and how it is being used against a citizen.

    Did the Supreme Court Tip its Hand on ObamaCare?
    By Frank Miniter

    On June 16 the U.S. Supreme Court sent a case (U.S. v. Bond) back to a lower court on Tenth Amendment grounds. The ruling, written by Justice Anthony Kennedy (the Court’s “swing vote”), hints that ObamaCare just might be ruled unconstitutional. How? Justice Kennedy’s opinion in U.S. v. Bond showed he still believes the federal government is restricted by the enumerated powers as listed in the U.S. Constitution. His viewpoint was expressed in a case the Lifetime network is probably making a movie about right now.

    In this case, Carol Anne Bond learned that her best friend, Myrlinda Haynes, was pregnant. Bond thought that was great until she found out that the baby was fathered by her husband of 14 years, Clifford. Naturally, Bond, a microbiologist residing in suburban Philadelphia, wanted revenge. She began in the usual way by threatening Haynes over the telephone: “I [am] going to make your life a living hell.” Subsequently, Bond’s attempts to make Haynes life a “living hell” got her convicted for harassment in 2005.

    Bond, however, was still out for revenge. Bond next smeared poisonous chemicals, such as an arsenic-based chemical (remember she is a microbiologist) on Haynes’ car door handle, mailbox, and other places. Haynes got a burn from the chemicals and reported it to the police. The police, however, didn’t know what to make of Haynes’ claims. But then the U.S. Postal Inspection Service got involved because the mailbox had been tampered with. After its investigation, Bond was charged with a violating U.S. Code, Section 229, a statute that then prompted federal prosecutors to also throw the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention at Bond. Bond subsequently pleaded guilty in federal court and got a six-year sentence and nearly $12,000 in fines and restitution.

    The use of this federal treaty on chemical weapons, however, was a bit much, so Bond’s lawyers appealed by arguing that using the federal government’s Chemical Weapons Convention against Bond is unconstitutional under the Tenth Amendment. (“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.”)

    On appeal, the 3rd Circuit then ruled that Bond lacked standing to challenge her conviction, finding that only states, not individuals, can bring challenges under the Tenth Amendment.

    With this constitutional question in the balance, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to take the case and heard it last January. Former Solicitor General Paul Clement represented Bond at the Supreme Court hearing. Clement argued that “the structural provisions of the Constitution are there to protect the liberty of citizens.” He articulated that states have the authority to resolve their own criminal justice cases — some international treaty on chemical weapons shouldn’t preclude this state right.

    Which gets us back to Justice Kennedy and his tell on how he might rule on ObamaCare. Justice Kennedy said at the hearing: “The whole point of separation of powers, the whole point of federalism, is that it inheres to the individual and his or her right to liberty; and if that is infringed by a criminal conviction or in any other way that causes specific injury, why can’t it be raised?” This made court watchers wonder if this might forecast how Justice Kennedy might vote on ObamaCare.

    Then, on June 16, the Court ruled 9-0 in favor of Bond that the U.S. Congress overstepped its authority by infringing on powers reserved to the states under the Tenth Amendment. (Bond, however, will have to make and win the Tenth Amendment argument in a lower court, as the Supreme Court only sent the case back down to the lower court while saying that Bond can fight her conviction on Tenth Amendment grounds.)

    So here’s where it gets interesting for those wondering how the Court will vote on ObamaCare. The Obama Administration’s argument is that it can mandate that people buy government-approved health insurance under the power the Constitution’s Commerce Clause (The U.S. Congress shall have the power “To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes….”) gives the federal government. The Commerce Clause has been viewed to be an expansive power by the Supreme Court; for example, the Court found in Wickard v. Filburn (1942) that the federal government can even regulate whether a farmer can grow wheat for his chickens. But the Court has never found that the government can mandate that citizens actively do something, such as purchase a product. This is why Justice Kennedy’s opinion expressed in U.S. v. Bond is interesting, as it indicates his preference for state rights under the Tenth Amendment.

    For example, in his opinion on U.S. v. Bond, Kennedy quoted the Supreme Court case New York v. U.S. (1992): “Federalism secures to citizens the liberties that derive from the diffusion of sovereign power.” And then Justice Kennedy said, “[Federalism] protects the liberty of all persons within a state by ensuring that laws enacted in excess of delegated governmental power cannot direct or control their actions…. By denying any one government complete jurisdiction over all the concerns of public life, federalism protects the liberty of the individual from arbitrary power. When government acts in excess of its lawful powers, that liberty is at stake. The limitations that federalism entails are not therefore a matter of rights belonging only to the states.”

    So in U.S. v. Bond Justice Kennedy found that Congress exceeded its constitutional authority. Let’s hope he’ll do the same when Obamacare makes it to the U.S. Supreme Court.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/06/did_the_supreme_court_tip_its_hand_on_obamacare.html

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      But how would the rest of the Court stack up on it? Wondering…….

      I will never agree that in regulating Commerce you can force someone into Commerce.

  36. gmanfortruth says:

    I’m still not sure how treaties became an issue, maybe some of this can be clarified in context with the article. Hypathetically, The U.s and Canada have an agreed and approved treaty that states if one country is attacked, the other will aid in their defense. Canada is attacked by Russia, and by treaty we are obligated to help in their defense. I’m all good with that.

    This does not preclude the authority that Congress must call the military to action. The President still does not have this power, despite a treaty. I believe I have this correct.

    • Gman,

      But the President has such authority of Congress, given the War Power Act.

      That’s the point, they already gave it away.

      The question, does Congress have the power to delegate its power to another branch of government….? Well, ask Buck that one.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Short answer to the question = yes.

      • Mathius™ says:

        Oooooh.. so now you consider Buck authoritative on such issues.. whereas before…

        You know what? Nevermind.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Don’t go down that rabbit hole…you may not come out this time around.

          And yes, us lawyers do give short answers, most notably while waiting for a new pot of coffee to brew. My original answer was going to be “depends.” Would that have been more to your liking?

      • gmanfortruth says:

        Flag, The war powers act did not give this authority to the President. It was very clear as I outlined “As we look at the War Powers Act, paragraph (a), it outlines the authority to introduce the U.S. Armed Forces into hostilities. 1. a declaration of war. As I have outlined, it is the responsibility of Congress to declare war. Congress has taken no such action against Libya. 2. specific statutory authorization. As I have also outlined, this would have to come from a vote of Congress to approve military action, which no such authority was given concerning Libya. 3. a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces. In this instance, Libya did not attack any part of the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

        To say a treaty with the UN or any nation is authority is ludacris. They provide no such authority. Your going to have to better here, because you have given no absolute proof to your position. I have provided the proof for my position, if you are refuting, then prove it, you have not.

        • gmanfortruth says:

          @Buck,

          Is my assessment of the War Powers Act concerning Libya correct?

          • Buck the Wala says:

            Yes and no, its a bit more convoluted.

            You’re right in the three areas where the WPA would come into effect. #2 is where it gets a bit muddled – it could be said that the UN resolution provides the statutory authorization. Not 100% sure on this one. Practically speaking though it doesn’t really matter. Congress has long delegated its authority to the President and Presidents have long introduced armed forced without hitting one of the 3 points you outline.

            That being said, now that the 90 days are up regardless, the issue is whether the WPA applies to this particular situation. Obama has taken the position that it does not. I’m not keen on that position, but do find it an interesting argument. At the very least it is being made publicly so that we can all debate it on its merits. As a legal argument it passes the blush test, but not by much in my opinion.

            • gmanfortruth says:

              Thanks Buck,

              Where I stand on #2, is the word specific. That tells me that some form of law or whatever states specifically that the Pres can order the military into action if it is agreed via treaty. I have found no such document concerning this.

              Keep in mind, this article is about Obama’s authority to do what he did in March. I do not believe he had the authority. Just my humble non-lawyer oppinion. 🙂

              • Buck the Wala says:

                My concern is much more towards now that the 90 days are up, not towards the initial decision in March.

              • gmanfortruth says:

                Understand, If Obama is wrong, what is his fate?

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Unfortunately, it probably won’t be decided. SCOTUS will dodge the issue. The Executive Branch as a sovereign branch has long been granted authority to make its own legal decisions, which is why it was a bit surprising the Obama Administration failed to abide by the DOJ’s decision as is customary practice (though clearly they did so because it wasn’t what they wanted to hear!)

                At the end of the day, my gut is one of two things will happen — either a) Obama will appeal to Congress int he near future at which point Congress will give him the green light or b) Obama will continue to maintain his interpretation that WPA doesn’t apply, yet proceed to bring a relatively quick end to US military involvement.

                Just my guess. No one really knows at this point.

  37. Canine Weapon says:

  38. The average monthly casualty rate for U.S. military forces serving in Afghanistan has increased 5-fold since President Barack Obama was inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2009.

    1,540 U.S. troops have been killed in Afghanistan since Oct. 7, 2001, when U.S. forces began fighting in that country to oust the Taliban regime that had been harboring al Qaeda and to track down and capture or kill al Qaeda terrorists.

    During the Bush presidency, which ended on Jan. 20, 2009 with the inauguration of President Obama, U.S. troops were present in Afghanistan for 87.4 months and suffered 570 casualties—a rate of 6.5 deaths per month.

    During the Obama presidency, through today, U.S. troops have been present in Afghanistan for 29.1 months and have suffered 970 casualties—a rate of 33.3 deaths per month.

    http://cnsnews.com/news/article/us-casualties-afghanistan-have-increased

  39. Gman,

    “a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces. In this instance, Libya did not attack any part of the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces”

    If Russia moved her tanks to the edge of Germany, do you believe the President would require to wait for Congress to vote, or can the President invoke the War Powers, the threat of imminent attack on Germany with which the US has a treaty (NATO)?

    What is your opinion, Gman?

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Flagster,

      You ask an interesting question. I picked Canada for a specific reason, we have no bases there. Germany would be an interesting decision. If our bases, because of there location were considered under imminent threat than yes, but not due to any treaty. If there were a specific statute that the President can enact the War powers Act if a treatyis agreed that agrees to defense of the nation by which we have a treaty with, I would be Ok with it. There is no such statute that allows for implementation of the War Powers act due to a treaty. If there was, then I would be in your court.

      • Gman,

        Here:
        The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, […] will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

        [..]
        For the purpose of Article 5, an armed attack on one or more of the Parties is deemed to include an armed attack:

        – on the territory of any of the Parties in Europe or North America, on the Algerian Departments of France (2), on the territory of or on the Islands under the jurisdiction of any of the Parties in the North Atlantic area north of the Tropic of Cancer;
        on the forces, vessels, or aircraft of any of the Parties, when in or over these territories or any other area in Europe in which occupation forces of any of the Parties were stationed on the date when the Treaty entered into force or the Mediterranean Sea or the North Atlantic area north of the Tropic of Cancer.

        • gmanfortruth says:

          That’s all fina and dandy. If an attack happens on foreign soil, then it’s the responsibility of Congress to engage the military, not the President. Nowhere in that treaty does it say that the enumerated powers have changed. It is also an agreement between countries, not presidents. This does not constitute a SPECIFIC staute as written in part 2 of the War Powers Act. Try again Sir. 🙂

          • gmanfortruth says:

            I have an iron head heavily wrapped in kevlar. Could be a long night 8)

          • Gman,

            If an attack happens on foreign soil, then it’s the responsibility of Congress to engage the military, not the President.

            Where do you believe that particular highlight is written anywhere?

            • gmanfortruth says:

              Yes my pirate friend, it is very clearly written in the Constitution as I outlined in the article. Specifically ” To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;”

              I don’t think it can be much clearer than that. 8)

    • For Russia to move tanks to the German border means they have already run over NATO countries. The war is already on. By treaty we are required to come to the defense of NATO countries in the event that they are attacked. I would assume this goes as far as the use of nukes. I doubt that anyone would argue that the President cannot respond to immediate hostilities prior to getting congressional approval. This is only prudent. However, he does not have the right to initiate an attack on opposition forces amassed along a NATO border since this is only a threat not an attack as required by the treaty.
      Remember, we had a declaration of war within 24 hrs of Pearl Harbor. I would find it difficult to believe that in an emergency Congress could not respond in a reasonable period of time.
      In the case of Libya, they did not attack or even threaten us or our allies. It is a war of choice not necessity. There was no emergency as it took days for Obama to make up his mind to get involved. The UN even had the time to debate and vote on the issue. He had more than enough time to get congressional approval prior to engaging in hostilities not to mention the 60 days since.

      • T-Ray,

        Ok, to the Polish border…..

        Re: Libya.
        Yes there was such a threat.

        UN impose no-fly zone, enforced by allies, who under THEIR treaty are in harms way, invoking NATO treaty to come to their aid.

        • What threat? Did Libya fire on NATO or US troops or civilians first? That would be news to me. A threat is not an act of war otherwise we would be at war with Iran. If any NATO country is an agressor, I do not think we are obligated to assist in that aggression. The UN granted permission to impose a no fly zone, they did not order and cannot order us to implement it. UN permission maybe necessary (by leagal international rules) but it is not sufficient under the Constution to commit the US to an act of war.

          While on a telephone townhall meeting last night, my Congressman stated emphatically that treaties cannot negate Constitutional rights. This came up in concern to the treaty on small arms currently being discussed.

          Why is my typing response on the is website about one letter per second?

  40. 😐

  41. MATHIUS DAY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Happy Mathius Day to one and all!!

      • Bill was sitting at home alone when he heard a knock on the front door.

        There were two sheriffs deputies there. Bill asked them if there was a problem.
        One of the deputies asked if he was married, and if he could see a picture of his
        wife. Bill says “sure ” to both questions and shows him a picture of his wife.

        The sheriff says, “I’m sorry sir, but it looks like your wife’s been hit by a truck.”

        Bill says, ” I know, but she has a great personality, and she’s a good cook too.”

      • Not sure one should encourage those suffering from delusions of grandeur 🙂 🙂 Just kidding! Happy Birthday Matt!! I crown you King for the day.

        • Thanks, V!

          But today is just the observed holiday since my b-day falls on sunday this year.

          Can I be king for the weekend?

          Ooh, and does being king mean that I can get BF to admit he’s wrong about something? Naw.. that’s just crazy talk.

          Thanks everyone for the b-day wishes.. I took the day off, so I won’t be participating much. Try to have fun without me 🙂

          • Buck the Wala says:

            I never realized how important Mathius Day was — all partners in my firm have taken the day off in celebration!

            Maybe you could call one of them up and tell them to allow us peons to at least leave early so we can celebrate the festivities of Mathius Day with our loved ones as well…

          • Buck the Wala says:

            But despite the importance of the holiday, you can’t be king for the weekend. You would just cause too much damage. Hell, I have problems with you being king for an hour, let alone the entire day!

          • Perhaps we could try for BF agreeing not to call you a barbarian for a few days. King for the weekend-Buck brings up a good point but since he tried to usurp my power-I am going to grant it.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Who gave you the power to annoint Kings!? And, perhaps more importantly, why would they give you such a power!???

              🙂

              • You sir, need to realize that you are a mere subject in my kingdom, I have the power because I have knights to back up that power.

              • 🙂 Tell him V!

              • How are you doing this fine morning Anita? Going to the lake?

              • It’s a rainy day in Michigan today. I’ll be going to the lake tomorrow then meeting up with my daughter there and it’s a ROADTRIP to southern Illionois to retrieve their vehicle which has finally arrived from Hawaii. I’m excited..I love roadtrips!

              • Sounds like fun and I know you are glad your daughters home. Sending a car from Hawaii-that sounds almost more expensive than buying a new one. 🙂 I’ve got relatives coming in from out of town-looking forward to seeing them.

              • You betcha I’m happy their back! Free shipping for all belongings and one vehicle thanks to Uncle Sam. They sold her vehicle before leaving the island and she has since bought a new one here. Now we just have to wait on the rest of their stuff which wont be here for another month. They both have interviews next week. Keeping my fingers crossed! Have fun with your company this weekend!

  42. Bottom Line says:

    Amendment 25 – Presidential Disability and Succession. Ratified 2/10/1967.

    1. In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President.

    2. Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.

    3. Whenever the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President.

    4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

    Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

    1 Vice President of the United States Joe Biden (D)
    2 Speaker of the House John Boehner (R)
    3 President pro tempore of the Senate Daniel Inouye (D)
    4 Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (D)
    5 Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner (D)
    6 Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (R)*
    7 Attorney General Eric Holder (D)
    8 Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar (D)
    9 Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack (D)
    10 Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke (D)
    11 Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis (D)
    12 Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius (D)
    13 Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan (D)
    14 Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood (R)
    15 Secretary of Energy Steven Chu (D)
    16 Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (D)
    17 Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki**
    18 Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano (D)

    Sigh—–

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