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Reply #58: Sorry, you're so wrong, yes it does!! [View All]

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caseymoz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-31-11 09:49 AM
Response to Reply #53
58. Sorry, you're so wrong, yes it does!!

It doesn't just say Congress may authorize a standing army.

I didn't think it was necessary for me to cite it. It's easy enough to find in the Constitution online and use a browser that has a "find" feature, but you didn't even look. You just presumed I was lying or misinformed. Here:

Article 1, Section 8, Clause 12:

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

Why would it limit the appropriation to two years after it says Congress has that power? The Constitution doesn't make another specific limit like this on any other power of Congress. It doesn't make it on the Navy, whose Clause is immediately below. That looks like a limit on a standing army to me.

What's the election cycle on the House of Representatives? Two years. In other words, the House (where appropriation bills have to start) doesn't have the power to extend an appropriation for an army (not a military intervention or a war, but the army itself) for two years. Meaning also people would get to vote between the time it forms an army and its next appropriation.

If you're going to say we can't limit executive power by legal means, you might as well just flush the Constitution, because that's the idea behind the entire document. Not doing that is the same view of executive power dictatorships take. Why wouldn't every branch of government need this "flexibility" to "help" the president? Remember, the Constitution is there to prevent dictatorship, and it's odd that you see the necessity for loosening restraints on the Office of government that naturally threatens it the most.

And given Obama's enthusiastic grasping and extension of executive powers that Dubya pioneered, I'd say dictatorship is exactly the threat now.

There are two other places where the Constitution looks decidedly anti-standing army. One of them is the Second Amendment, and if you look at the first draft of it, in the Constitution of Virginia written by Thomas Jefferson, you see that.

Really, if this is the current reality where we need an expensive standing army, we should amend the Constitution to reflect that. Keeping it the way it is just invites disrespect for the rest of it, where whole sections can be declared "impractical."
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