Good link. The founders had good economic intuition, and collective action problems and externalities were at the forefront of their consideration of the division of powers between the federal government, the states, and the people. The most obvious example in Article 1 Section 8 is of course the vague authority to appropriate money for the "general welfare". When people like Madison and Jefferson got more specific on what this power entailed (for example - the power to construct roads), their language got even more recognizable to modern economists. In fact, the real objection to the road building wasn't the federal authority to appropriate money for it, but the federal authority to commandeer state land for the investment.
Bad link. Reason.com argues that Obama is getting a blank check from the anti-war movement, and it's because of partisanship. I don't understand why people get taken in by this argument. I participated in the anti-war movement in to a certain extent during the Bush administration. I participated in a couple marches. "Anti-war" is something of a misnomer... while there were genuinely "anti-war" people there what it really was was "anti-Iraq-war". Most of the vocally "anti-war" people I knew agreed with me that Afghanistan was a legitimate commitment of troops and Iraq was not a legitimate commitment of troops. We have seen a lot of violence in Afghanistan the last couple years, but I resent being called partisan or a hypocrite for not being as concerned as I was. Obama did what a lot of us elected him to do - get us out of Iraq in a rational way and get the job done in Afghanistan. Exactly when and how we need to get out of Afghanistan is a tough question that I could muse on but don't have the expertise to answer. But Reason.com shouldn't obscure the real issue at hand. The comparison they made is also quite strange - they looked at the first three years of the Bush administration and compared it to the first two and a half years of the Obama administration. We didn't even get into Iraq until 2003. What kind of comparison is that?!?!? Reason.com is too wrapped up in the politics of this question and pays too little attention to the policy.
3 hours ago