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Showing posts from September 1, 2013

Congress and the American Czar

After the 1905 Russian insurrection against Czar Nicholas II, the czar was not toppled, but forced to relent to the moderate element of the revolutionaries of that era, and their demands for more freedoms through the creation of a Duma, a representative chamber of the people of Russia that would share power with the czar.  However, the powers shared by the Duma and the czar would not be anything like the powers shared in the U.S. Constitution between the Congress and the president, two of three main branches of government that each have broad, if not equal, powers.  Anything the Duma did, the czar could overrule, and overrule he did on a number of occasions.  In effect, the Duma was basically an advisory board that depended on the whims of a semi-benevolent autocrat to be effective.  Forward to 2013 and the American president, Barack Obama, who just told Congress he doesn't need their permission to go to war with Syria, but he will let them have an advisory vote.  Never mind that …