The 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (or AUMF), which Congress passed right after 9.11 to authorize our ongoing incursion in Afghanistan, is still in effect, and word on the street is that a lot of Congressfolk from both parties wouldn't terribly mind repealing it. In fact, H.R. 2324 would repeal the AUMF at the end of this calendar year; the bill currently has eight Democratic sponsors and two Republican ones. (One of the latter is the infamous Paul Broun of Georgia, but don't hold that against the bill.) If you wonder whether repealing the AUMF is really a good idea, consider that the Constitution grants the power to declare war to Congress, not the President, and then read those five words again: "authorization to use military force." That's a long way to go in order to avoid saying "declaration of war," isn't it? If we're going to go to war, we ought to at the very least be honest enough to call it that. And our current Administration now uses the AUMF to justify unmanned drone attacks, our NSA spying on us, and continued detention at Guantánamo Bay. So the Friends Committee on National Legislation helps you tell your Congressfolk to repeal the 2001 AUMF and start reining in Presidential power again.
Meanwhile, Daily Kos helps you tell President Obama to allow the U.S. Post Office to offer basic types of banking services, which might include savings accounts, debit cards, and small loans. Why? Two reasons: one, the Post Office did offer all these services until 1967, and offering these services again could keep a lot of low-income families from resorting to things like pawnshops and check-cashing joints and payday lenders. Keep in mind that you can find Post Offices in rural and urban areas where the big banksters don't want to go provide services to anyone, and these areas serve close to one quarter of the American people. The other reason? Offering basic banking services would help shore up the Post Office's finances, thus protecting the jobs and pensions of its workers. The best part? Mr. Obama can just issue an executive order directing the Postmaster General to, say, start a trial program implementing the USPS Inspector General's very positive recommendations about postal banking. Let Congress work itself into a froth about it -- they'd either be protecting a) the banksters who don't want to serve the communities the Post Office would serve or b) the predatory lenders who wind up "serving" those communities anyway. All that ain't good optics, as they say.