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Who is Commander in Chief?!

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  • Democrat
    Julian, CA
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    From the beginning of his presidency President Obama made it clear to everyone that he wanted to close that ongoing war crime called GITMO and what did the Defense Department do about it? Absolutely nothing year after year after year, of course Obama being a gentle thoughtful man just kept using the same thoughtful patient approach year after year after year. President Obama after taking office should have fired everyone in the Defense Department that was obstructing his ability to close GITMO and thereby preventing innocent people those brutal years of unjust imprisonment.

    When the military feels it has the right to ignore the commands of the U.S. President that should be considered an act of treason, otherwise the military ends up running the U.S. Government. President Truman knew this and didn't hesitate to fire General Mac Arthur.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    No President can fire top ranking Department of Defense officials at his whim and no President can close something the Congress provides funding for without Congressional approval.

    If you're mad that Guantanamo Bay is still open then write your Congressperson or Senator. I'm just as mad as you are that GITMO is still open, but don't blame President Obama for it; blame the Congress.

    We have a separation of powers in this country. Article I is the Congress; Article II is the Presidency. Congress has the power of the purse, the Senate has oversight over the Presidents cabinet, and the Courts have oversight over both of these branches.

    It's not as simple as saying it's President Obama's fault that GITMO is still around.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:

    No President can fire top ranking Department of Defense officials at his whim and no President can close something the Congress provides funding for without Congressional approval.

    If you're mad that Guantanamo Bay is still open then write your Congressperson or Senator. I'm just as mad as you are that GITMO is still open, but don't blame President Obama for it; blame the Congress.

    We have a separation of powers in this country. Article I is the Congress; Article II is the Presidency. Congress has the power of the purse, the Senate has oversight over the Presidents cabinet, and the Courts have oversight over both of these branches.

    It's not as simple as saying it's President Obama's fault that GITMO is still around.

    Jared, I still think, like Connie says, that certain Congress people, likely GOP members feed this obstruction, because they are in bed with the generals and get certain favors because of it. The corruption in this country is unbelievable; someone may have an interest to keep it open to get certain " balloon" budgets for someone's department etc. In the Government no one checks if certain budgets are "functional"; no one wants to have its budget reduced. But anyway it is a total shame on how this country is run. I already see that in our local district; a "budget" system is asking for trouble and useless spending.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: Jared, I still think, like Connie says, that certain Congress people, likely GOP members feed this obstruction, because they are in bed with the generals and get certain favors because of it. The corruption in this country is unbelievable; someone may have an interest to keep it open to get certain " balloon" budgets for someone's department etc.

    Corruption, obstruction, and civics are three entirely different things.

    As I said--we have a separation of powers in this country. President Obama wants to close GITMO. Congress won't let him. He is not a king.

    The Supreme Court has also had their say in this matter. They ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that the military tribunals set up by the Bush Administration and Congress were unconstitutional because they violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice and many sections of the Geneva Convention. The Congressional response to this ruling was also struck down by the Supreme Court because it didn't give detainees the right to petition federal courts for habeas corpus challenges.

    The military has no, let me stress NO, say in any of this.

    Dutch Wrote: In the Government no one checks if certain budgets are "functional"; no one wants to have its budget reduced.

    The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, House and Senate Budget Committees, and House and Senate Oversight Committees absolutely make sure budgets are "functional."

    Dutch Wrote: But anyway it is a total shame on how this country is run. I already see that in our local district; a "budget" system is asking for trouble and useless spending.

    What you consider useless spending is vital spending to someone else. I want the military budget slashed and new investments in infrastructure, education, and health care. Others want the military budget raised and to slash the budgets of things I consider important. That's what democracy is all about. I'd rather have this dysfunction than live under a dictatorship.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:
    Dutch Wrote: Jared, I still think, like Connie says, that certain Congress people, likely GOP members feed this obstruction, because they are in bed with the generals and get certain favors because of it. The corruption in this country is unbelievable; someone may have an interest to keep it open to get certain " balloon" budgets for someone's department etc.

    Corruption, obstruction, and civics are three entirely different things.

    As I said--we have a separation of powers in this country. President Obama wants to close GITMO. Congress won't let him. He is not a king.

    The Supreme Court has also had their say in this matter. They ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that the military tribunals set up by the Bush Administration and Congress were unconstitutional because they violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice and many sections of the Geneva Convention. The Congressional response to this ruling was also struck down by the Supreme Court because it didn't give detainees the right to petition federal courts for habeas corpus challenges.

    The military has no, let me stress NO, say in any of this.

    Dutch Wrote: In the Government no one checks if certain budgets are "functional"; no one wants to have its budget reduced.

    The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, House and Senate Budget Committees, and House and Senate Oversight Committees absolutely make sure budgets are "functional."

    Dutch Wrote: But anyway it is a total shame on how this country is run. I already see that in our local district; a "budget" system is asking for trouble and useless spending.

    What you consider useless spending is vital spending to someone else. I want the military budget slashed and new investments in infrastructure, education, and health care. Others want the military budget raised and to slash the budgets of things I consider important. That's what democracy is all about. I'd rather have this dysfunction than live under a dictatorship.

    Jared, sorry you live in la la land!! So there is no corruption, obstruction in this Government?. Talking about efficiency go have a look, you'll be surprised. Nothing there can be done efficiently; that's why nothing gets done, just follow the process to buy a pencil. You're very naïve. Ever heard of Government bureaucracy? Here in FL I see that daily around me on how inefficient governments are. I did government contracting in D.C. and was shocked; no wonder an F35 cost $400 million a piece. Keep on dreaming. Of course the generals have influence via, via. Wow, you should know better.

    Added note; what you describe is the "official route" however that is not the " who do you know" route; and who influences "who" or has "power" via via. Oversight committee's are the same "breed" as the rest of them i.e. as "dumb"

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: Jared, sorry you live in la la land!!

    I'd actually consider myself a realist who understands how our government works.

    The argument put forward in the original thread of this page suggested that President Obama was hoodwinked by the Department of Defense who went around his back to ensure GITMO would never be closed. I explained, in detail, how that was not true and then tried to explain that the President can't just walk in and fire any person who was confirmed by the Senate at their whim.

    Dutch Wrote: So there is no corruption, obstruction in this Government?.

    I never said that. I said "[c]orruption, obstruction, and civics are three entirely different things."

    Corruption is when an elected official commits a fraudulent act. Just because a politician does something you disagree with doesn't mean they are guilty of corruption. If that were the case then every politician in this country would be in jail because someone will always disagree with them.

    Obstruction, while infuriating, is not illegal. Republicans refusing to allow the President to close GITMO is not corruption, it's obstruction. We can shout, scream, and type our anger at these Republicans, but what they have done is not illegal.

    And civics is when someone understands their rights and duties as citizens. It's our duty as citizens to understand how our government functions at the local, state, and federal level. If we don't like how any of those three government's function then we have the ability to change that government in the next election.

    A good case in point is how I chose to move to a city and state that conducted its politics in a way I agree with. I have less of a say in how the national picture looks though, but I can guarantee you that if every eligible voter who makes enough time to watch "Dancing With the Stars" actually votes then our national politics would be a lot different.

    Dutch Wrote: Talking about efficiency go have a look, you'll be surprised. Nothing there can be done efficiently; that's why nothing gets done, just follow the process to buy a pencil. You're very naïve. Ever heard of Government bureaucracy? Here in FL I see that daily around me on how inefficient governments are. I did government contracting in D.C. and was shocked; no wonder an F35 cost $400 million a piece. Keep on dreaming. Of course the generals have influence via, via. Wow, you should know better.

    I never said military generals don't have influence; I said they have no say in something the Supreme Court has ruled on.

    We aren't talking about inefficient government and the military-industrial complex; we are talking about President Obama's inability to close GITMO because the Congress won't allow him to. I'm with you on our government being highly inefficient in this rapidly changing world, but you lose me when you bring in a host of different grievances that have nothing to do with closing GITMO.

    And I'm not naive; I'm a realist. I have my opinions and I have what I'm willing to take as a compromise. I'm rather uncompromising when it comes to civil and human rights, but I'm more than willing to compromise when it comes to everything else.

    Dutch Wrote: Added note; what you describe is the "official route" however that is not the " who do you know" route; and who influences "who" or has "power" via via. Oversight committee's are the same "breed" as the rest of them i.e. as "dumb"

    I don't really know how to respond to this.

    Is our government perfect? Absolutely not. Do I want to see radical change with how big money makes an influence on our elected officials? Yes. And would I like to see a shift in our national priorities away from the Pentagon and towards social welfare programs designed to make this country a better place for everyone living in it? As Sarah Palin would say--You Betcha!

    But I understand that none of these will happen over night. I also understand that people love to bitch and moan, but often are too lazy to show up to the polling station when they could actually have the potential to right the ship. We get the government we vote (or don't vote) for.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:
    Dutch Wrote: Jared, sorry you live in la la land!!

    I'd actually consider myself a realist who understands how our government works.

    The argument put forward in the original thread of this page suggested that President Obama was hoodwinked by the Department of Defense who went around his back to ensure GITMO would never be closed. I explained, in detail, how that was not true and then tried to explain that the President can't just walk in and fire any person who was confirmed by the Senate at their whim.

    Dutch Wrote: So there is no corruption, obstruction in this Government?.

    I never said that. I said "[c]orruption, obstruction, and civics are three entirely different things."

    Corruption is when an elected official commits a fraudulent act. Just because a politician does something you disagree with doesn't mean they are guilty of corruption. If that were the case then every politician in this country would be in jail because someone will always disagree with them.

    Obstruction, while infuriating, is not illegal. Republicans refusing to allow the President to close GITMO is not corruption, it's obstruction. We can shout, scream, and type our anger at these Republicans, but what they have done is not illegal.

    And civics is when someone understands their rights and duties as citizens. It's our duty as citizens to understand how our government functions at the local, state, and federal level. If we don't like how any of those three government's function then we have the ability to change that government in the next election.

    A good case in point is how I chose to move to a city and state that conducted its politics in a way I agree with. I have less of a say in how the national picture looks though, but I can guarantee you that if every eligible voter who makes enough time to watch "Dancing With the Stars" actually votes then our national politics would be a lot different.

    Dutch Wrote: Talking about efficiency go have a look, you'll be surprised. Nothing there can be done efficiently; that's why nothing gets done, just follow the process to buy a pencil. You're very naïve. Ever heard of Government bureaucracy? Here in FL I see that daily around me on how inefficient governments are. I did government contracting in D.C. and was shocked; no wonder an F35 cost $400 million a piece. Keep on dreaming. Of course the generals have influence via, via. Wow, you should know better.

    I never said military generals don't have influence; I said they have no say in something the Supreme Court has ruled on.

    We aren't talking about inefficient government and the military-industrial complex; we are talking about President Obama's inability to close GITMO because the Congress won't allow him to. I'm with you on our government being highly inefficient in this rapidly changing world, but you lose me when you bring in a host of different grievances that have nothing to do with closing GITMO.

    And I'm not naive; I'm a realist. I have my opinions and I have what I'm willing to take as a compromise. I'm rather uncompromising when it comes to civil and human rights, but I'm more than willing to compromise when it comes to everything else.

    Dutch Wrote: Added note; what you describe is the "official route" however that is not the " who do you know" route; and who influences "who" or has "power" via via. Oversight committee's are the same "breed" as the rest of them i.e. as "dumb"

    I don't really know how to respond to this.

    Is our government perfect? Absolutely not. Do I want to see radical change with how big money makes an influence on our elected officials? Yes. And would I like to see a shift in our national priorities away from the Pentagon and towards social welfare programs designed to make this country a better place for everyone living in it? As Sarah Palin would say--You Betcha!

    But I understand that none of these will happen over night. I also understand that people love to bitch and moan, but often are too lazy to show up to the polling station when they could actually have the potential to right the ship. We get the government we vote (or don't vote) for.

    Sorry Jared; this government is dysfunctional because of the system here. someone is making "money" on Gitmo; get the picture. for instance here in FL the army Corps of engineers is draining lake Ochechobee daily now because of a lot of rainfall; this lake is being polluted by the sugar industry as well everything around that lake including sewers etc. Mr. Scott our Governor got 3/4 million from the sugar industry to keep his mouth shut and let them pollute all they like. In the meantime they "found" a solution by digging another "hole" for a "billion" of which money gets skimmed back to Scott and his buddies. This project is not finished until 2020, so in the meantime our beaches keep getting polluted and the tourist industry goes to hell. A simple solution as I promoted, like giving huge fines to the polluters as well put a filtration plant at the release point hits deaf ears, because they can make more "pocket" money over the four years to dig a "hole". That is how it works in this country. The same in the federal government, especial in military funding. Thus with the Gitmo thing it is clear what is going on; someone is getting rich because of it and has "connections". Please check how much Gitmo cost a year.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: The same in the federal government, especial in military funding. Thus with the Gitmo thing it is clear what is going on; someone is getting rich because of it and has "connections". Please check how much Gitmo cost a year.

    I want GITMO's prison closed just as much as you do. I have never once stated that I wanted to keep it open and I am well aware of the costs billed to the American taxpayer in order for it to stay open.

    Not everything is a conspiracy though. Who is getting rich off keeping a prison on a small naval base in CUBA open? The actual cost to keep GITMO open pales in comparison to some of our bases in Europe and Asia, making up a tiny (and I mean tiny) fraction of the entire operating budget for the military.

    And even when we figure out what to do with the remaining 91 prisoners there will still be a naval base that houses some of our armed forces. That's just a fact.

    So I think it's important to look at the bigger picture. I want nothing more than to close down that prison, but it's a hell of a lot more complicated than just saying that everything is corruption and people are getting filthy rich off of keeping 91 prisoners locked up on a small naval base in Cuba.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:

    Dutch Wrote: The same in the federal government, especial in military funding. Thus with the Gitmo thing it is clear what is going on; someone is getting rich because of it and has "connections". Please check how much Gitmo cost a year.

    I want GITMO's prison closed just as much as you do. I have never once stated that I wanted to keep it open and I am well aware of the costs billed to the American taxpayer in order for it to stay open.

    Not everything is a conspiracy though. Who is getting rich off keeping a prison on a small naval base in CUBA open? The actual cost to keep GITMO open pales in comparison to some of our bases in Europe and Asia, making up a tiny (and I mean tiny) fraction of the entire operating budget for the military.

    And even when we figure out what to do with the remaining 91 prisoners there will still be a naval base that houses some of our armed forces. That's just a fact.

    So I think it's important to look at the bigger picture. I want nothing more than to close down that prison, but it's a hell of a lot more complicated than just saying that everything is corruption and people are getting filthy rich off of keeping 91 prisoners locked up on a small naval base in Cuba.

    No, not filthy rich, but a nice warm place in the sun with free lunch. It is quite simple; seldom a government unit gets deleted; the beast feeds on itself and only expands.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: No, not filthy rich, but a nice warm place in the sun with free lunch. It is quite simple; seldom a government unit gets deleted; the beast feeds on itself and only expands.

    The individuals at GITMO are not a government unit; they are prisoners that no country wants.

    I would love for our Congress to pass a law that mandates they are charged, moved to the United States, and stand trial for war crimes. If the military doesn't think they have enough evidence to charge or convict them with a war crime then they should be released. But this is up to the Congress and the Courts. The President can't do a damn thing about it. And that's what the entire discussion was about in the original post of this thread.

    I'd love for Germany, Britain, France, Japan, and countless other countries to kick us out. It would save us taxpayers a lot of money. But do you know why they haven't? They know they would be swimming up shit creek without a paddle.

    That's the conundrum we Americans have found ourselves in. Everyone wants to bitch and moan about America, but we are the first people they call whenever another country threatens them. And I'm sorry, but I'd much rather live in this dysfunctional democracy than a Communist dictatorship.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    jaredsxtn Wrote:

    Dutch Wrote: No, not filthy rich, but a nice warm place in the sun with free lunch. It is quite simple; seldom a government unit gets deleted; the beast feeds on itself and only expands.

    The individuals at GITMO are not a government unit; they are prisoners that no country wants.

    I would love for our Congress to pass a law that mandates they are charged, moved to the United States, and stand trial for war crimes. If the military doesn't think they have enough evidence to charge or convict them with a war crime then they should be released. But this is up to the Congress and the Courts. The President can't do a damn thing about it. And that's what the entire discussion was about in the original post of this thread.

    I'd love for Germany, Britain, France, Japan, and countless other countries to kick us out. It would save us taxpayers a lot of money. But do you know why they haven't? They know they would be swimming up shit creek without a paddle.

    That's the conundrum we Americans have found ourselves in. Everyone wants to bitch and moan about America, but we are the first people they call whenever another country threatens them. And I'm sorry, but I'd much rather live in this dysfunctional democracy than a Communist dictatorship.

    Sorry, Jared guess how much personel and oversight people there are; thus not just prisoners. Let alone the "bookkeeping and backup" to run that place including transport, food, computers etc. Everything is imported there. Thus a dumb statement that only prisoners are there. About kicking the US (like you said) out of Germany etc. you must be kidding. If you take Ramstein in Germany the US can't do without it; it is their man hub to everywhere. Countries in Europe would have a huge celebration if the the US would leave; sorry Europe does not need the US, Europe did not start any wars since WWII; they hate the military. The meddling of the US in their affairs has become awfully irritant, also the refuge problem created by the US is not seen as positive. THEY ALL HATE THE WAY THE US IS MEDDLING IN THE WORLD. ( I guess the results are obvious related to all our "lost" wars)

    For instance ( because we read the Dutch newspapers) that the US want to "research" what is being said or done on Dutch universities, because they are afraid terrorist "thinking"may have infiltrated there. WOW; is it any of the US's business?

    According to my contacts, especially now Trump opened his big mouth, people in Europe or elsewhere are disliking the US more and more.

  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: Sorry, Jared guess how much personel and oversight people there are; thus not just prisoners. Let alone the "bookkeeping and backup" to run that place including transport, food, computers etc. Everything is imported there. Thus a dumb statement that only prisoners are there.

    I never said only prisoners are at GITMO; I said it was a naval base before prisoners were ever there and it will be a naval base after the last prisoner leaves. The prison is a small part of the overall base.

    Dutch Wrote: About kicking the US (like you said) out of Germany etc. you must be kidding. If you take Ramstein in Germany the US can't do without it; it is their man hub to everywhere. Countries in Europe would have a huge celebration if the the US would leave; sorry Europe does not need the US, Europe did not start any wars since WWII; they hate the military. The meddling of the US in their affairs has become awfully irritant, also the refuge problem created by the US is not seen as positive. THEY ALL HATE THE WAY THE US IS MEDDLING IN THE WORLD. ( I guess the results are obvious related to all our "lost" wars)

    I would encourage you to do a little research. All of the major world powers have foreign military bases in multiple countries. Britain has seventeen; France has fifteen; Italy has nine; and Russia has nine. It's true that the United States has the most bases, but we are not alone.

    There's also nearly as many British soldiers in Germany as there are American soldiers. Britain has 21,500 soldiers stationed in Germany and The US has a little over 30,000.

    Things aren't as black and white as saying that everyone hates the United States. International relations are more complex than blaming the US for everything that's wrong in the world. The reason your Dutch friends who hate America meddling in the world aren't speaking German is because the allied forces saved their ass. I'm sure they didn't hate America "meddling in the world" then.

    Do you honestly think that if America just packed up and left all of Europe that everything would be peaches and cream? What happens when America closes all of her bases and Russia decides to invade Europe? You would then be saying bye bye to human civilization on this planet because that would bring about a full on nuclear war. You'd be naive beyond human comprehension if you honestly believe that America leaving Europe would wind up being a net positive. It would likely bring about the end of human civilization. And I'm sorry, but I like living.

    Dutch Wrote: For instance ( because we read the Dutch newspapers) that the US want to "research" what is being said or done on Dutch universities, because they are afraid terrorist "thinking"may have infiltrated there. WOW; is it any of the US's business?

    According to my contacts, especially now Trump opened his big mouth, people in Europe or elsewhere are disliking the US more and more.

    Once again--not everything you read in the newspapers is accurate and not everything is a vast conspiracy.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    I don't know where you get your info from; the mentality of the US has drastically changed since WWII, you are not realizing that in cozy Oregon. Did you live for an extended time in Europe and worked there? It is not true that so many Brits are in Germany may be just after WWII but not now; they can't afford such luxury. About the Russia thing you see this typical through "American colored glasses"; the fact is that Russia only wants to protect "Russians"; in the Ukraine, the border dispute is because of wrong border lines; so it is easy to redraw those if all parties involved redraw those; problem solved, if others like us don't meddle in these local disputes. The other fact is that NATO is expanding due to pressure from the US, which in turn gets Russia mad, because they don't want NATO too close to their borders. Again we are the driving (meddling) force which creates all these frictions. Sorry Americans are indoctrinated by all the local media here and it is impossible to change that or actually learn to view things on how the world views us.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Dutch Wrote: I don't know where you get your info from; the mentality of the US has drastically changed since WWII, you are not realizing that in cozy Oregon.

    No, it really hasn't. And I get my information from various sources, but mainly books and other peer reviewed publications.

    The end of WWII was a game changer in world history. The US and allied powers won the war. The allied powers included Russia, who then became an enemy. The Cold War almost immediately began afterwards. Mutual destruction was the name of the game. If Russia crossed the line then the US would strike. If the US crossed the line then Russia would strike.

    The end of the Cold War brought about another massive shift. Eastern Europe began integrating with Western Europe for the first time in decades. The European powers didn't know how to handle this shift and asked for American help.

    And don't even get me started on the hundreds of billions of dollars America spent to rebuild Europe after WWII. I encourage you to read up on the Marshall Plan.

    Dutch Wrote: Did you live for an extended time in Europe and worked there?

    No, but my fiance is an Irish citizen and we have visited there and Europe more than a few ties.

    Dutch Wrote: It is not true that so many Brits are in Germany may be just after WWII but not now; they can't afford such luxury.

    Yes, it is true. The number I quoted is from this year.

    Dutch Wrote: About the Russia thing you see this typical through "American colored glasses"; the fact is that Russia only wants to protect "Russians"; in the Ukraine, the border dispute is because of wrong border lines; so it is easy to redraw those if all parties involved redraw those; problem solved, if others like us don't meddle in these local disputes. The other fact is that NATO is expanding due to pressure from the US, which in turn gets Russia mad, because they don't want NATO too close to their borders. Again we are the driving (meddling) force which creates all these frictions. Sorry Americans are indoctrinated by all the local media here and it is impossible to change that or actually learn to view things on how the world views us.

    If you honestly believe that then you are the most naive person I have ever conversed with.

    I'm still trying to figure out how any of this has to do with GITMO though.

  • Independent
    Ft.myers, FL
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    Sorry Jared, you disappoint me; you are a "real' American with blinders on. Just for the record how many wars has the US won since WWII; answer "none", it created only a bigger mess in the world and we keep "needling" other countries because they are not "marching" the way we want; ask China, Russia, any middle east country, Africa. Thanks to the US, Europe is now flooded with refugees. Wake up Jared, you've got no clue what the US is doing in this world, thanks to the "biased" media here. Related to GITMO, the same story, we love to torture, ask Trump and Bush