Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

Why are the billionaires laughing?

It’s easy to laugh when the corporate press treats you as a glorious success instead of the epitome of a broken social order. Billionaires laugh because they know the corporate media prefers to fawn over them rather than hold them to account.

Today, we ask you to support our nonprofit, independent journalism because we are not impressed by billionaires flying into space, their corporations despoiling our health and planet, or their vast fortunes safely concealed in tax havens across the globe. We are not laughing.

We are hard at work producing journalism for the common good. With our Fall Campaign underway, please support this mission today. We cannot do it without you.

Support Our Work -- Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Every donation—large or small—helps us bring you the news that matters.

Led by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), 12 House Democrats and one House Republican sent a letter to Trump that asks the president to submit the resolution so that Congress can vote on a new Authorization of the Use of Military Force (AUMF). (Photo: Reuters)

Lawmakers Call on Trump to End 'Blank Check for War'

'The Constitution is clear: The American people deserve a voice on matters of war and peace'

Nadia Prupis

Lawmakers are calling on President Donald Trump to officially declare war against the Islamic State (ISIS) and submit a resolution to Congress that limits his war powers.

Led by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), 12 House Democrats and one House Republican sent a letter to Trump that asks the president to submit the resolution so that Congress can vote on a new Authorization of the Use of Military Force (AUMF).

"For too many years, Congress has ignored these ongoing wars," the letter, obtained by Politico on Tuesday, states. "Our brave service members face countless dangers for our nation and we owe it to them to act on an AUMF without delay."

The letter, which was also signed by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), urges Trump to create a draft war resolution that provides "specific information on the geographic, combatant and tactical scope" of the fight against ISIS, as well as a sunset date.

It should also repeal the 2001 AUMF that approved military action against those responsible for the 9/11 attacks—one that has no expiration date, has not been updated since passing, and which the lawmakers say has been used as a "blank check" for armed conflict.

Politico writes:

The post-9/11 AUMF has no end date and has been broadly interpreted by the Bush and Obama administrations to allow the military to carry out strikes against suspected terrorists the world over, from the Philippines to the Horn of Africa, and even on the "high seas," according to the Congressional Research Service. There is concern among some congressional Democrats that Trump could use the broad powers of the 2001 resolution to further expand what he has called an ideological war against radical Islam.

Congress previously attempted to authorize the fight against ISIS after former President Barack Obama submitted a resolution in February 2015. But that effort failed, and resulted in Trump entering office with nearly unlimited power to wage war.

The sole Republican signatory to the letter is Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina, who was also the only member of his party to back a Democratic bill to create an independent commission to investigate Russia's involvement in the 2016 presidential election.

In a separate statement, Lee—who was the only member of Congress to vote against the 2001 resolution—said the letter showed that bipartisan lawmakers "agree that blank checks for endless war are unacceptable and dangerous."

"For over 15 years, Congress has been missing in action and derelict in our duty to provide congressional oversight over military action," she said in her statement. "The Constitution is clear: The American people deserve a voice on matters of war and peace."

The letter comes one day after Defense Secretary James Mattis announced that the U.S. military would likely be fighting ISIS in Iraq "for a while."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

New York Taxi Workers Stage Hunger Strike to Demand Medallion Debt Relief

"They are an essential industry here in New York City," said Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, "and we need to make sure we're doing right by them."

Julia Conley ·


'It's Not Coming Out': Bernie Sanders Stands Firm on Medicare Expansion

"It's what the American people want and, after waiting over 50 years, what they are going to get."

Julia Conley ·


'When We Organize, We Win': Ocasio-Cortez Joins India Walton at Rally in Buffalo

The two progressives joined striking hospital workers on the picket line at Mercy Hospital after the early voting rally.

Julia Conley ·


Fatal Film Set Shooting Followed Outcry by Union Crew Members Over Safety Protocols

"When union members walk off a set about safety concerns, maybe 'hiring scabs' isn’t the solution you think it is."

Julia Conley ·


New Whistleblower Sparks Calls to 'Crack Down on Facebook and All Big Tech Companies'

Hours after another ex-employee filed a formal complaint, reporting broke on internal documents that show the tech giant's failure to address concerns about content related to the 2020 U.S. election.

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo