Trump Attacks Syria: Our Security Interest? On What Authority?

What is our national security interest in attacking Syria? On what authority was it done?

A dictator gassing children is a horrible thing, but launching a $100 million slew of missiles without congressional authority or any clear threat to our national security is certainly questionable.

If our policy is now to attack dictators who do bad things, without any finding of a threat to our nation, then we’re on a slippery slope.

Congress faces a choice whether to let yet another president degrade its constitutional war powers.

Trump tossing bombs at Syria is like throwing rocks in a hornets nest. Just makes them more dangerous.

This attack is being defended as a need to “do something.” That’s not a strategy, just a hissy fit.


Author: craigcrawford

Trail Mix Host

74 thoughts on “Trump Attacks Syria: Our Security Interest? On What Authority?”

  1. Ah what about the children?

    Certain people in certain industries have certain friends in certain high places.

    Poor innocent babies!

    Invest wisely.

    Crime against humanity!

    Thank Goodness Jared, Don Jr & Eric will never have to put on a uniform.



  2. The Russian investigation is getting very close to the guy.  He is stupid enough to do anything to deflect attention away from himself.  Tweets can only do so much, war is much more effective, or used to be.  Get the world around you for taking on the bad guys.  Bush II did the same thing.  Too bad that he used up all the “rally ’round the flag” enthusiasm for slaughter of innocents.  That is why the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan is not on the front page anymore.

  3. Once Assad used gas there really was no choice.  As is the attack is too little too late and the prospect of a real policy in the middle east is  at least 6 months down the road.  But the other choice is to drop a nuculer weapon on  Kim the uuuung’s head. So maybe  this will slow down DT’s twin brother in North Korea.



  4. If  team Obama had figured out a way for “the rebels” to shoot down a couple of Russian planes…………….

    Yeah, I know, never mind



  5. Craig it was  all decided before you were born. when it comes to war powers, the president can do anything he damn well wants too. Historically, blame it on Lincoln.



  6. Meanwhile, thanx to trump Exec Orders industries can ramp up their lead and mercury chemical attacks on US babies.

    Any wonder y McMaster & Mattis had bannon, the kremlin mole kicked out of the NSC yesterday ?


  7. It’s $150M!LL!ON $hot off a$ a fig leaf.

    basher will retaliate w/scuds v Israel, or by sinking a Saudi Suezmax oil tanker off a Ger, Fr, or It beach.

  8. “Meanwhile, thanx to trump Exec Orders industries can ramp up their lead and mercury chemical attacks on US babies.”

    xr, oh so right you are

  9. craig, johnny mc answers your question… well, sort of

    the hill: McCain: Congress should pass new military authorization

    Sen. John McCainJohn McCainMcCain, Graham applaud Syrian airstrikesMcCain: Congress should pass new military authorizationPaul, Lee: Congress needs to vote on Trump’s military action in SyriaMORE (R-Ariz.) on Thursday called on Congress to pass a new Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), though argued that President Trump has the authority to carry out potential strikes in Syria.

    “We need an Authorization for Use of Military Force. We got to update it, we got to make it realistic and we got to have Congress, the representatives of the American people, involved in some of these decisions,” McCain said on MSNBC’s “MTP Daily.”

    “I am going to work with Sen. Tim Kaine[D-Va.] and others to try to come up with one,” he said.

    Still, McCain maintained that Trump does not need to ask for the lawmakers’ approval if he wants to strike Syria following the deadly chemical attack this week believed to have been carried out by the Assad regime.

    “I don’t think he needs congressional approval,” McCain said, citing the Reagan administration’s 1986 operation against Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi.

    McCain voiced a similar view earlier on Thursday when asked if the president is obligated to get congressional authorization for military action in Syria.

    “No more than Ronald Reagan was after the Berlin bombing when he struck Gaddafi,” McCain told reporters. “He has no more requirement than Ronald Reagan did.”

    When asked again if he thinks Trump has the authority to strike Syria, McCain replied, “I do. Certainly no one complained when Ronald Reagan did it.”

    The U.S. has largely relied on the AUMF passed in the days following the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks to justify military operations against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), as well as the 2002 AUMF authorizing the Iraq War.

  10. on what authority?  maybe god spoke to drumpf like he did to dubya. remember this:  “President Bush said to all of us: ‘I am driven with a mission from God’. God would tell me, ‘George go and fight these terrorists in Afghanistan’. And I did. And then God would tell me ‘George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq’. And I did.”

    Mr Bush went on: “And now, again, I feel God’s words coming to me, ‘Go get the Palestinians their state and get the Israelis their security, and get peace in the Middle East’. And, by God, I’m gonna do it.” [the guardian]

    and according to daily show

  11. Asian etiquette?  trumpence junta shows china, this is how you do it!

    The glimpse into trump’s attempt at empathy?  he will still find it easy to deny US of AA citizens access to health care and the ability to afford those pills and medical procedures without mortgaging the house!  How many thousands of America First humans are dying at the hands of the stingy and greedy insurance companies?  Bomb Aetna!  Bomb Cigna!

  12. What about Gorsuch?  Perhaps the Senate will delay the SCOTUS nominee vote today to update the prez’s war powers. (insert Patsi’s Hah!)

  13. Also gone to RIP David Peel…….73……..Lennon buddy, street singer, leader of David Peel and the Lower East Side

  14. Lawmakers urge Trump to engage Congress on Syria

    A number of Democrats called on Trump to ask for congressional authority to use military action in Syria.

    They were joined by some Republicans, while others in the GOP asked for Trump to engage with Congress. 


    Those voices included Sen. Rand PaulRand PaulCruz: Trump should make the case for military action in SyriaRand Paul: Trump needs Congress to authorize military action in SyriaTrump: Syria strike in ‘vital national security interest’ of USMORE (R-Ky.), a frequent critic of U.S. military engagement.

    Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) was more blunt in his criticism. He quoted a 2013 tweet from Trump himself arguing that that former President Barack ObamaBarack ObamaLawmakers urge Trump to engage Congress on SyriaMcCain, Graham applaud Syrian airstrikesUS launches missile strike against Syria in response to gas attackMORE “must get Congressional approval before attacking Syria.”


    View image on Twitter

    Thomas Massie



    9:42 PM – 6 Apr 2017

    Speaker Paul RyanPaul RyanGOP leaving town with little to crow aboutLawmakers urge Trump to engage Congress on SyriaHow Devin Nunes suddenly fell from powerMORE (R-Wis.) issued a statement offering general support for Trump’s actions, though he also said he looked forward to Trump engaging with Congress on Syria. 

    “This action was appropriate and just,” Ryan said. “I look forward to the administration further engaging Congress in this effort.” 

  15. So McCains support for authority to attack a foreign nation is that Reagan got away with it? Lame. At least Reagan was retaliating for the killing of Americans, had a better case for defending national security.

  16. First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

    shades of  pastor Martin Niemöller’s poem.  1st they came for the twitter, then they came for the 1st amendment, then they came for me.

    wapo: The government is demanding to know who this Trump critic is. Twitter is suing to keep it a secret.

    Twitter filed a lawsuit Thursday to block an order from the Department of Homeland Security that seeks to reveal the user of an account who has been critical of the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

    Tweets from the account — @ALT_uscis — indicate that it is run by someone who is an employee of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services division of Homeland Security.

    Free speech advocates said the DHS order appeared to be the first time the government has attempted to use its powers to expose an anonymous critic — a development that, if successful, would have a “grave chilling effect on the speech of that account” as well as other accounts critical of the U.S. government, Twitter said.

  17. for the record, this is the language from the post-9/11 congressional authority Obama and now Trump use to justify making war in Syria — a long stretch at best:

    “the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations or persons he determines planned, authorized committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2011, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.”

  18. Interesting series of tweets this morning.

    The Pentagon reported that attacks not on those parts of the military base in Syria, where they could be Russian armed forces …

    Trump says he’s had “one of the most successful 13 weeks” of any president — he’s only been in office 11 weeks

    The Kremlin was asked whether it’s true that the Russian anti-missile systems were switched off for the attack: “No comment”

  19. I am not a conspiracy type person….   BUT….  I don’t believe anything on the surface that has anything to do with this administration and Russia.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if what really happened was that Russia actually gassed those poor children…  then through a backdoor channel signaled for Trump to go ahead and bomb Syria.  In the meantime Russia told Assad this was going to happen and they expected him to fake outrage, as they too were going to criticize Trump.  All of this was staged in order to boost Trump’s approval ratings.  After all, the longer he can remain in office, the better for Putin.

    Oh yeah…..   and the gassed children….   Trump, Putin, and Assad just shrugged.

  20. Pussy Grabber is doing it for the children…..”No child of God……”

    On another subject…this if from Mr. Cracker’s x daughter in law she is a history teacher at a Jewish HS charged with making sure her students understand all sides of the conflicts.

    But this is on the subject of the deplorables

    I recently read Strangers in Their Own Land, a book written by a Berkeley sociologist with the goal of empathetically understanding the tea party voter. I have also had The Hillbilly Elegy recommended to me by fellow liberals. I see as well articles and commentators calling on Democrats and liberals to understand the Trump voters. Why do we do this? Because progressive values are about inclusion, tolerance, education. Where is the reaching out on their side? Where is the call to understand the liberal voters? Where are the books written by conservative academics helping Republicans and Trump supporters understand why we are so terrified? I hear they feel criticized by the liberal elite, that we call them names, followed by them calling us snowflakes and libtards. It’s like that relationship in which the other person accuses us of never calling even though they don’t call either. If there is such a book out there, please recommend, conservative friends. I’d love it if you picked up the phone once in a while.

  21. One shouldn’t make the mistake of comparing the military strength and resolve of the DPRK with that of Syria. North Korea is tremendously formidable by all measures; Syria is, comparatively, a pimple on North Korea’s ass.

  22. RR, like you, I’m not a conspiracy theory type, but…

    I was listening to Jr. Senator “Little” Marco Rubio try and justify the attack because we have 100 soldiers somewhere in Syria who might be victims of a gas attack sometime, somewhere.  Really?  That’s the best you’ve got?  And pardon my skepticism, but I don’t have any confidence that a guy who gasses his people and who has a standing army and air force and an ally named Russia will be persuaded by a cruise missile attack on one airbase.  But hey, those night time missile launches make good video footage, don’t they?

  23. dw akademie:
    Merkel, German government say US missile strikes in Syria ‘understandable’
    Germany has signaled support for the American military action – without explicitly backing it, calling the strikes “limited and targeted.”
    Speaking at an event for refugee helpers in Berlin, Angela Merkel once again condemned the “chemical weapons massacre of innocent people in Syria” and implied that the US missile strikes in response were justified.

    “We all know that chemical weapons are condemned internationally and that anyone who uses them commits a war crime,” Merkel said, calling the US response “limited and targeted.”

    Merkel also reiterated an earlier statement she issued together with French President Francois Hollande that Syrian leader Basher-al Assad was “solely responsible for the latest developments.”

    “In view of the dimensions of this war crime, the suffering of innocent people and the blockade in the United Nations Security Council, the attack by the US is understandable,” the conservative chancellor said.


    Merkel stressed that diplomatic work was now needed to resolve the conflict in Syria.

    “It remains right and crucial to devote all our energy to discussions in the UN Security council  and in Geneva in to order to arrive at a transitional political solution in Syria and put a democratic end to the Assad regime,” Merkel added.

    Understanding but not supporting

    The German government’s line is essentially that the Assad regime’s crimes against humanity are so bad that they justify US President Donald Trump’s decision to take unilateral action. At the government’s Friday press conference, spokespeople for the chancellor and the Foreign Ministry refused to be drawn in on the question of whether the US missile strikes themselves might not be a violation of international law. Instead they repeated multiple times that the US action was “understandable.”

  24. What i want to know is WHY?.  Why now? When Hillary wanted this to happen she did no get her way…..Why no real investigation on how those chemicals released?….i remember in 1991 due to Bombs form airplanes…….an accident releasing harmful chemicals were released…..Why are we creating more and more enemies……is this Why Trump started his anti immigration policies, keep as many out, install a new immigration policy,,,they bomb them with 60 missiles…why 60? is that all they had? why not just one…or a cpl…but 60…..who is behind him doing these things….he is just signing policies that are put in front of him without even reading them….who is pulling the strings….why is Syria a Pawn piece in the  game of Chess with Russia….lots of why………and why are the new outlets  doing  their job……

    Why arnt the  Dems/liberals pointed out that Donald Trump ran for president on a platform of reducing US military meddling in other countries’ affairs. It’s time for him to follow through and order a US withdrawal from Syria………..Why are we there at all…….We were not attacked in any way…..Why is it our business to keep playing Chess with Russia at the cost of innocent lives………..

  25. thread topic of authorization in six minute segment  on morning joe this a.m.:
    GOP senator says Trump should come to Congress
    Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, discusses the U.S. missile strike in Syria and why Trump should come to Congress with a plan. 

    tom brokaw   also joined in              

  26. also on morning joe:
    Don’t give Putin respect, says fmr. defense secretary
    Former Defense Secretary William Cohen explains why the U.S. strike in Syria was the right move, why it is time to embarrass Putin and why he believes this is a major step forward in U.S. policy.

    most of the 13 minute segment though is spent on the usual panelists stepping on each others comments…. too little hearing from cohen

  27. That should have read that the news outlets are not doing their jobs… investigative reporting……they should be getting paid for doing their real jobs…….stenographers no?

  28. Last one……now even for such a small thing as a world war……Pres Wilson went to congress to enact the war…………so why doesnt Congress take back the authorities that they can claim……..not blaming obama…..but another missed opportunity? or did he ignore them also in his expansion of wars, and the making of new ones……………later

  29. solar, thanks for telling us about Hillary’s remarks hours prior to administration taking action

    here’s abcnews story: Ahead of attack, Hillary Clinton called for strikes against Syrian airfields

    Speaking at the Women in the World summit in New York City, Clinton said that the U.S. “should have been more willing to confront [Syrian President Bashar al-Assad],” before Russia got involved in the country’s civil war and with Iran’s participation limited to ground-based assistance.

    “Assad had an air force and that air force is the cause of most of the civilian deaths as we’ve seen over the years and as we saw again in the last few days,” said Clinton. “I really believe we should have and still should take out his airfields and prevent him from being able to use them to bomb innocent people and drop sarin gas on them.”

  30. I wouldn’t be surprised if what really happened was that Russia actually gassed those poor children… – Ms Renee

    True. + Our ‘message’ is, next time kill our people.

    If it’s our business to make war on baby killers, then we’re gonna have to bomb commie China & the Russian Empire, too.



  31. I lied….Pat……How is it that we had permission to violate the air space (shields) in the first place…i would like to see intensive reporting on this…..From Russia with love??

  32. I just knew that the nut en yahoo would be around somewhere:

    Netanyahu seeks buffer zones against Iran and Hezbollah on Syria’s borders with Israel and Jordan
    Netanyahu wants buffer zones to be part of any future deal to end Syrian civil war, to prevent Iran and Hezbollah from establishing foothold; premier discusses issue with Trump administration, other international actors

  33. Q. Why 60 missiles?   A. There were (at least) 60 aim-points. If there were more than 60, a decision was made to limit the number of missiles.

    Q. What is going to be the immediate reaction by the Syrian government?
    A. Panic. How was this base so unprepared for an attack? Why were all the aircraft shelter doors open? Aircraft were destroyed while in their shelters! Why didn’t you attack the American ships while they were launching the missiles? What do you mean you didn’t know they were launching!?! You didn’t have any aircraft on alert???

    I would not be surprised to learn of a purge and slaughter of the officers that left this base (and others?) totally vulnerable to attack. Assad will not be happy.

  34. the hill:

    President Trump is considering ousting both White House chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Stephen Bannon, Axios reported on Friday.

    Aides and advisers to the president told Axios that, while Trump is considering a major shakeup in the West Wing, it’s not clear when it would happen or if Trump will “pull that trigger.”

    “Things are happening, but it’s very unclear the president’s willing to pull that trigger,” one top aide said.


    Firing them both would be an enormous upheaval for the young presidency, which has yet to hit its 100-day mark.

    Axios did not say who could replace Bannon as Trump’s chief strategist but reported that House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Trump economic adviser Gary Cohn were among those being considered to replace Priebus as chief of staff.

  35. WWI was different. German saboteurs had repeatedly attacked the US, destroying property and lives.

    Exclusive: Situation in Syria constitutes international armed conflict – Red Cross

    Previous air strikes on Syrian territory by a U.S.-led coalition have been against only the militant group Islamic State, which is also the enemy of the Syrian government.

    Russia has carried out air strikes in tandem with its ally Syria since Sept. 2015, while Iranian militias are also fighting alongside the troops of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.



  37. ww1 was justified…just pointing out that congress gave the authority to……


    Another shit head that started a war on his own and not give a damn what congress or anyone else said….was Polk…when he invaded Mexico…… Mexicans are illegal in their own lands……..later going out for a long walk……hey Xr… r a great one…….

  38. Solar, it’s always important to specify which Red Cross we’re talking about. In this case, it’s the Swiss-based International Red Cross which, with its Muslim counterpart, has specific responsibilities under the Laws of Armed Conflict and the Geneva Conventions.

    Our domestic Red Cross does not handle things under the IRC’s charter. That does not diminish the importance of the American Red Cross’s role in humanitarian relief here and abroad.

  39. One of the things that i hate the most…….is hypocrisy….and we have it in spades:

    only a few weeks ago……. March 17, US warplanes attacked a handful of buildings in the city of Mosul, leveling the buildings and burying a massive number of civilians within. US of A admitted that we were “responsible for the deaths of  300 civilians in the attacks……im not going to wear my marine corps hat for a long time to come….just not that proud right now……….

  40. The Zimmermann Telegram convinced Dixie’s pols that WWI wasn’t just a Yankee problem.

  41. ‘About this “sending a message” crap — missles are not a tool of communication.’ – Mr Crawford, Esq.

    This bears repeating.

    Badgering, even.

  42. We’re in deep shit in Syria. The AUMF doesn’t begin to apply to intervention in a civil war in Syria, we’re invading a sovereign nation and we’re doing it to distract from a shitty start to a bad presidency. And Poobah, damn right missiles aren’t a form of communication. Godammit.

  43. assad is sending a message to russhia : Send more and deadlier missiles and planes !!!

    Now, that is sending a message.

  44. It’s all playing out as predicted.  You could have been an adult and voted for Clinton.  Now, sit back and embrace the facism.  Death, racism, oh, and the economy is starting to tank.

    Oh, RR, great minds think alike.  Why would Assad gas kids?

  45. cnn:
    The UK supports the US airstrikes “because war crimes have consequences and the greatest war criminal of all, Bashar al-Assad, has now been put on notice,” United Kingdom Ambassador to United Nations Matthew Rycroft said.
    “The US strike was a proportionate response to unspeakable acts that gave rise to overwhelming humanitarian distress, Rycroft said. “It was also a strong effort to save lives, by ensuring such acts never happen again.”
    Rycroft also blasted Russia for its support of Assad.
    “Russia has given Assad everything he could dream of,” Rycroft said. “Without Russia’s seven vetoes in the Security Council, defying the views of other members of this council, Assad would now have faced sanctions and justice.”
    He added, “Russia sits here today humiliated by its failure to bring to heel a puppet dictator, entirely propped up by Russia itself and Hezbollah and Iran.”

  46. daily mail: UN Security Council opens emergency meeting on US strikes in Syria

    The UN Security Council met in an emergency session on Friday following the US missile strikes in Syria, with France and Britain voicing support for Washington’s military response to a suspected chemical weapons attack.

    France and Britain called for a renewed push for political negotiations to end the six-year war in Syria.


    Describing the US strikes as “appropriate,” French Ambassador Francois Delattre expressed hope the US action would be a “game changer and help boost the political negotiations.”

    The council meeting was called by Bolivia, which branded the US strikes a violation of international law.

    Bolivian Ambassador Sacha Lorenti said the United States had behaved like “investigator, attorney, judge and executioner” in Syria.

    “This is not what international law is all about,” he told reporters ahead of the meeting.

    Russia angrily denounced the military action as an “aggression against a sovereign state.”

    UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres urged restraint and a renewed push for peace in Syria, saying in a statement that “there is no other way to solve the conflict than through a political solution.”

    “It is it is time now to focus on the political process,” Rycroft echoed.


    Guterres called on the council to unite and agree on a way forward on Syria.

    “For too long, international law has been ignored in the Syrian conflict, and it is our shared duty to uphold international standards of humanity,” he said.

    “This is a prerequisite to ending the unrelenting suffering of the people of Syria.”

  47. The U.S. sent ground troops to Syria BEFORE the chemical attacks.  We were going to war there, regardless.  Why is everyone so dumb?  Lead in the water?

  48. it was reported that the missiles took out some of the chemical stockpiles at the airbase.  what sort of shelf-life does sarin have once dispersed by such bombblasts?  how far downwind are people in danger?  is there a toxic residue?

    when we hit the target how many more people did we unwittingly gas in addition to those assad gassed?

    do we know of other stockpiles and how can they be eliminated safely?

  49. Sarin is a binary product–two different liquid chemicals are mixed together as the munition is placed in use. In the case of a bomb, the chemicals are mixed after the bomb is dropped from an aircraft. After it strikes its target it disperses very quickly killing those within its lethal range. Sarin loses its lethality very quickly after its release–minutes v hours or days. Same thing if the chemicals come together after destruction of their storage area.

    More info here

  50. Would have no differenc

    Clinton to ‘Reset’ Syria War, Focus on Ousting Assad
    Aide Vows Clinton Would Escalate Fight Against Both ISIS, Assad
    by Jason Ditz, July 29, 2016

    Print This | Share This
    According to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy adviser, she would order a “full reeview” of the Syrian war as her first task upon taking office, with an eye toward a “reset” of the conflict to shift focus toward attacking the Assad government and imposing regime change.

    Clinton’s aide, former Pentagon chief of staff Jeremy Bash, insisted that Assad’s was a “murderous regime” and that US foreign policy would be to escalate both the war against ISIS and this new war against Assad to get both “out of there” at the same time.

    Syria has been the subject of a lot of debate in the Obama Administration, with the Pentagon seeking a focus on ISIS, the CIA wanting to shift entirely to fighting Assad, and Secretary of State John Kerry negotiating a deal with Russia to expand the war to include al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front.

    Though Bash didn’t cover where the Nusra Front would fit into this, the suggestion that Clinton’s administration would escalate attacks on both seems designed to split the difference and placate hawks on both sides of the issue. The Obama Administration has already been steadily escalating the war since it began, to little effect, and Clinton’s policy would be that, just moreso.

    e under H. Clinto:

  51. How about those job numbers?  Hiring was way off, although still positive, but the “fake” unemployment number continued to drop. March was not an overly cold month here – except for one week that was cold – but not cold enough to prevent outside jobs (I had my garage roof repaired and re-roofed in March, and the guys who did it never work outside if it is too cold or wet.

  52. flatus, thank you for the info on what we could have expected happened when the stockpiles were hit.

  53. meanwhile on a more mundane subject from cbs news: Here’s what it will take to fix Social Security

    The CBO analyzed costs for 36 possible changes to Social Security that would help eliminate the gap. These possible changes fall into five categories:

    1. Increase revenues
    2. Change the formula that calculates benefit amounts
    3. Increase the full retirement age
    4. Change cost-of-living adjustments
    5. Adjust benefits for specific groups

    It’s telling that none of these changes, by itself, would be the silver bullet that totally eliminates Social Security’s funding shortfall. For example:

    Gradually increasing the tax rate by 3 percent over the next 60 years would reduce the gap by 0.5 percent of GDP — roughly one-third of the current amount.
    Gradually decreasing benefits by 15 percent over the next 10 years would have the roughly the same impact — reducing the shortfall by about one-third.
    About two-thirds of the gap could be reduced by taxing earnings above the current wage base ($127,200 in 2017).
    Indexing the initial amount of benefits for future retirees by price increases instead of wage increases would also reduce the funding gap by about two-thirds.

    The CBO blog post has a helpful graphic that shows the effect of various changes to Social Security.

    Most likely, it will take a combination of revenue enhancements and benefit constraints to close Social Security’s deficit. The top candidates for increasing revenues are bumping up the tax rate or increasing Social Security’s taxable wage base. The top candidates for benefit constraints are gradually increasing the retirement age, reducing the monthly amount of benefits paid to future retirees and reducing future cost-of-living increases.

    These changes will require Republicans to compromise on their position to resist any tax increases and Democrats to compromise on their position to resist benefit reductions.

  54. Solar

    Hillary called for no fly safe zones for refugees and medical relief corridors which still aren’t there under either Obama or now Trump.

  55. btw, yesterday 100 years ago we entered the war…to end all wars… the war that introduced us to gassing

    “Bombed Last Night” uses gallows humor to tame the dread of poison gas.


    Bombed last night, Bombed the night be-fore

    Gonna get bombed tonight if we never get bombed any more.

    When we’re bombed, we’re scared as we can be.

    Oh God damnn the bombin’ planes from Germany.

    They’re over us, they’re over us,

    One shell-hole for the four of us

    Glory be to God there are no more of us

    ‘Cause one of us could fill it all alone.

    Gassed last night—gassed the night before,

    Gonna get gassed again if we never git gassed no more,

    When we’re gassed, we’re as sick as we can be,

    ‘Cause phosgene and mustard gas is too much for me.

  56. Whatever the case, wave good-bye to any hopes of impeachment of our corrupt Prez: our cowardly “consevative” congress will never impeach a “wartime” Prez.

  57. Bink, if he starts making deals w/Dems, wreckuplicans (the runt polists &tea partiers) might disown and impeach him.

    Love that edit button

  58. If you are an American of middle class, so to speak, and you can bend over far enough you can kiss your ass good-bye……..

  59. LOL, What are you folks smoking?

    Are you wanting to make Trump a 2 term president?  Just keep it up.

    I can’t think of any faster way than opposing punishing a bastard who would gas little girls.

    Pat can you post that picture again?  It says it all.

    On this one Trump by some miracle did the right thing. The only thing I would change is instead of attacking  an airport I would have targeted  Assad’s ass with all 50 missiles


  60. I remember the photo, taken during the summer of 1937 Japanese attack on China, of the screaming baby. That photo irrevocably set American public opinion against Japan. I remember vividly the photo of the naked Vietnamese girl running, screaming, arms outstretched toward us, on a country road, as the smoke of war rises behind her. That image brought home to Americans what the Vietnam War was really all about, blotting out the high-sounding phrases of the pols and dips. Americans took the horror displayed in that photo personally; it accomplished what Gene McCarthy, Martin Luther King, Jr, and Robert Kennedy could not. King basher assad has now turned American opinion against him, by murdering photogenic children, who were, nominally at least, under his care. Most Americans feel that this horrible massacre is personal. I know, I do.

    So, trump did the right thing for his 2020 campaign. For now, at least. May I, soto voce, of course, also state that he has expanded the number of entities with which America is presently at war, while making for America not a single new friend ? That he has lurched toward expending vast resources, without creating a single new one ? May I also notice that while trump feels he is justified in bombing, he doesn’t yet feel justified in sheltering ? Apparently I may not notice such things. Apparently my nattering negativism is somewhat premature.

    King basher shall find a way to pay us back, I am sure. Knowing him, who started this war six years ago by executing teenagers for painting anti-regime slogans on walls, his payback will be excruciating. Then poor Americans, people who make less than $100/hour, will be made to tighten their belts for a bigger war effort, again.

    In the meantime we shall cheer trump for knocking a fang out of his fellow fascist’s mouth. That’ll show him. We can’t see too far ahead through ‘the fog of war’, but we know ‘the facts on the ground’ right now : the bombing of the Syrian airfield is great for the 2020 trump campaign. And, apparently that’s all that matters. yippee.

  61. As the hours tick by and it looks like a publicity stunt was performed by the little hands man I fear he will see he failed.  The possibility of more war grows as another republican wants to prove his manhood by killing young Americans and others and to empty the treasury of all that we possess.  Too bad for those who voted for him.  Too bad for all of us.

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