Category Archives: War Powers Act

Mr. Madison’s War





President Trump has exercised his Executive authority to call forth the National Guard for the expressed purpose of “doing Military things” to guard the border with Mexico.

Whether or not you agree with his policy, today we ask the question about why it is that the President is calling forth the militia of the several states, when Article I section 8 makes it clear that Congress is supposed to be doing that. 

It’s Constitution Thursday on Plausibly Live…


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Dave on The Resistance Podcast: America – Peacekeeper or Bully?



It was a lot of fun Saturday night to spend the evening with Josh Carter and The Resistance Podcast, talking about my beliefs about deterrence and the role of the United States in world affairs.

Some fair warning, this is an adult podcast, and I am a sailor, so there is some language. Also Josh got me fired up about some issues with Congress and I launched. So if you get offended by language or criticism of my Congressman, you might want to avoid this bonus presentation.

So here is Josh Carter and I talking about whether o not the US is a bully or building an Empire or just doing what we should be doing….

Authorization For the Use of Military Force. Again.



The Pentagon has completed is 30 Day review of its ISIS strategy, and today will present that to the White House for consideration of future efforts against ISIS. The President has made it clear that he wants to spend more – much more – on the military. I think that is a good idea. We need the best and the most of it. The question is – what are we planning to do with it?

The Pentagon has made it clear that it wants another “Authorization for the Use of Military Force” to allow it to go after ISIS, full bore. Currently, we operate on the 2001 AUMF specifying that Al-Qaeda and its “affiliates” are the only legitimate targets. That seems to make the military nervous, as it is not crystal clear that ISIS is AQ.

Since 1973, really since 1950, the US has not declared war on any other nation. That covers four major wars (Korea, Vietnam, Gulf 1, GWOT) and countless other “uses of military force” without an actual Declaration of War. In fact, since 1945 the US Congress has declared that a state of war exists exactly zero times. Read the rest of this entry

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