Below is my column in the Hill on a series of cases that appear propelled by political rather than legal considerations. The costs to the legal system, the public, or victims in such cases are often overlooked but they are considerable.
Here is the column:
“It’s not about politics.” New York prosecutor Carey Dunne’s words were repeated like a mantra after this week’s indictment of the Trump Organization and its financial chief, Allen Weisselberg. The problem is that it is manifestly untrue.
In fairness to Dunne, he is prosecuting a case given to him by his superiors. Nor is he alone in pursuing a case driven more by political than legal considerations. From the prosecution of Bill Cosby to a federal lawsuit against Georgia, courts are dealing with cases where government lawyers repeat the same implausible claims with the same unconvincing results. The political gains from these cases ignore the real costs borne by others.
The Weisselberg indictment
Dunne’s statement was made after Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. and New York Attorney General Letitia James paraded triumphantly in front of hundreds of cameras with a handcuffed Weisselberg in their wake. The excitement — if not euphoria — expressed by many in the media was barely containable.
Weisselberg is charged with failing to pay taxes on executive perks, including cars, apartments and holiday gift accounts; prosecutors added up every possible perk and came up with roughly $1.7 million in taxable benefits. There is no question that such tax violations can be charged criminally; however, if they prosecuted all untaxed executive perks, half of Manhattan would be frog-marched to the hoosegow. That does not make Weisselberg a Mother Teresa figure, but neither does it make him John Gotti.
More importantly, it does not make him Donald Trump.
The piling-on of charges clearly is intended to coerce Weisselberg to flip on Trump. However, prosecutors are not investigating anything involving Trump’s election or presidency. Instead, they are investigating another common practice in business — whether Trump undervalued assets for taxes while overvaluing assets for securing loans.
It simply does not matter what the eventual charges are, however. James pledged to get Trump or his associates on any charge, and she found someone to charge. It is the name on the caption — not the name of the crime — that matters in a prosecutorial trophy kill. (James previously targeted the National Rifle Association.) Politicians like James who run for office by promising to bag political opponents, or their associates, do so at great cost to our legal system and to the concept of blind justice.
The Cosby ruling
In Pennsylvania, another prosecutor insisted that politics had nothing to do with a case. Kevin Steele, the Montgomery County district attorney who convicted comedian Bill Cosby in 2018, remained defiant after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned Cosby’s sexual assault conviction on Wednesday.
In Cosby v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the court found that Cosby was trapped by a “bait-and-switch” after a prior prosecutor assured that he would not be prosecuted if he testified in four civil depositions. Cosby proceeded to incriminate himself and admitted giving drugs to women who alleged sexual assaults. Steele later dismissed that agreement, introduced the incriminating statements, and then called five women to testify about their own uncharged alleged rapes. Those gross errors were allowed by Judge Steven T. O’Neill (who the defense sought to force off the case for bias). O’Neill refused to accept the prior agreement and mocked the notion that “The rabbit is in the hat and you want me at this point to assume: ‘Hey, the promise was made, judge. Accept that.’”
The state’s justices had no problem “seeing the rabbit in the hat,” nor did many of us who criticized the trial. However, it was hugely popular to disregard Cosby’s legal rights in the first major trial of the #MeToo period, given the magnitude of the accusations against him.
DA Steele is unapologetic and insists he was trying to show that “no one is above the law — including those who are rich, famous and powerful.” What he missed is that the rule of law should particularly apply to prosecutors who enforce it — and the costs of violating it are borne not just by Cosby but by his alleged victims, who lost any chance for a fair trial and a formal adjudication. The public will pay, too, not just the millions spent on the case but possible damages if Cosby sues for malicious prosecution based on the prosecutor’s public aggrandizing.
The Georgia lawsuit
Last week, the Biden administration surprised many observers by filing a civil rights action against the state of Georgia over its recent election reforms. The lawsuit was less surprising than its timing: It was filed just days before the release of Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee, an Arizona case in which the U.S. Supreme Court interpreted the very statutory provision (Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act) being used as the basis in the Georgia challenge.
The Biden administration has made opposition to Georgia’s law into a rallying cry for its stalled legislative efforts to federalize state election laws. The problem is that President Biden has been long on rhetoric and short on facts in denouncing the law as “Jim Crow on steroids.” The Washington Post awarded him four “Pinocchios” for his characterization of the law, including the false claim that it reduces the hours for voting; the law actually does the opposite. Likewise, Biden falsely claimed Georgia’s law prevents voters in line at polling places from getting water. Georgia was responding to complaints that campaigns circumvent rules barring politicking around polling places by giving food and drinks to voters in line; the law allows “self-service water from an unattended receptacle.” On these and other provisions, Georgia’s law has considerable overlap with provisions in other states.
In its 6-3 decision upholding Arizona’s election rules, including a bar on vote “harvesting,” the Supreme Court rejected presumptions of racial discrimination due to partisan objectives. Justice Samuel Alito declared “partisan motives are not the same as racial motives.” The ruling builds on earlier cases limiting the reach and meaning of the Voting Rights Act. The new Georgia challenge takes a considerable risk of magnifying these losses in court.
The legal cost of this ill-considered move could be immense. Important questions are being raised about the impact of some laws on minority votes. Yet the attack on Georgia’s law is a poor choice, despite Biden going “all in” on the narrative, because it locks the administration into proving a weak case. While the court declined to issue a sweeping new standard for all Section 2 voting rights cases, this case could open the door for precisely that type of ruling. The Biden administration — which has lost a remarkably high number of legal cases in its first year — is likely to lose this one, too, before the next presidential election.
Politically motivated cases like these impose costs that are rarely paid by those who bring them. The more a prosecutor feels it necessary to repeat that “It’s not about politics,” the more likely a case is entirely political.
Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can find his updates on Twitter @JonathanTurley.
103 thoughts on “Justice or Just Deserts? Trump, Cosby and Georgia Cases Show Rising Cost of Political Litigation”
Turley: your hypocrisy on political motivation is nothing short of stunning. While attempting to make the case that prosecution of Weisselberg and Cosby were politically-motivated, you ignore the fact that the SCOTUS ruling on elections is exactly that, and is exactly what was predicted to happen when the latest 3 judges got shoved onto the Court. Gorsuch took the seat that rightfully belonged to Merrick Garland, who was nominated by a POTUS fairly elected twice by the majority of the American people, but prevented from serving because of Mitch McConnell, allegedly due to the proximity of the election. Of course, proximity of the election in which Trump and several Senate Republicans were predicted to lose by every poll didn’t stop Republicans from shoving Covid-Barrett onto the Court. She and Gorsuch were vetted by the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society precisely because their views are far-right of the majority of the American people, especially as to civil rights and abortion. Republicans also cut off testimony against Kavanaugh by 25 witnesses who begged to testify. You don’t think that the presence of these 3 on the court of last resort was politically-motivated? Turley speaks of the voting rights decision as if it were handed down by God. No, Turley, it was intended to encumber minorities from voting as a reaction to the losses of Trump and Senate candidates, to try to limit probable Democrat citizens from voting. If the DOJ loses more election law challenges, it won’t be because they were wrong to bring these cases. It would be because the SCOTUS is tilted far-right, and you know it. Why not read the 40-page dissent from Justice Elena Kagan for a more -reasoned evaluation of the facts and the law? Alito is a legal lightweight.
Today is a re-run of prior attacks against Democrat prosecutors, prior efforts to normalize Trump’s criminality, with a little Cosby thrown in. Turley states that the position of prosecutors going after Weisselberg who deny political motivation is “manifestly untrue”. So, Turley’s calling the prosecutors liars? Tell us, Turley, is there a defense for tax evasion called “political motivation”? Surely you know that such cases are based on financial records, and in high-profile cases prosecutors make sure the ducks are all in a row before proceeding. So, according to Turley, Weisselberg’s conduct should go unpunished because any effort to address it would necessarily be politically motivated. Wanna talk about manifestly untrue and implausible and unconvincing arguments, how about your claim “… if they prosecuted all untaxed executive perks, half of Manhattan would be frog-marched to the hoosegow.” More of your arguments to shore up the daily rhetoric by your employer that Trump is somehow a victim of evil Democrats. Since you’re such an expert, tell us, Turley, just how many executives in Manhattan have their salary frozen for years, and instead of raises and bonuses, receive rent-free apartments, a free car, tuition to private schools for family members and other perks amounting to over a million dollars, which their employer deducted as business expenses? What do you base your claim on, Turley, other than your role as a defender of Trump? it’s a matter of degree. We’re not talking about a free coffee bar, here.
Turley tries to claim that it is a “common business practice” to keep 2 sets of books–in which assets are undervalued for tax purposes and overvalued for purposes of obtaining loans? Is this really a “common business practice”? When someone applies for a loan and lists as collateral assets and their value, such applications are made under oath, subject to penalties for perjury, just like tax returns are. This is because banks are regulated and deposits are guaranteed by the FDIC, so to prevent losses, information banks rely on for making loans must be verified under the penalties for perjury. So, what is your source for claiming that it is “common” to keep 2 sets of books?
Cosby admitted, under oath, drugging and raping women. The agreement by the prior prosecutors not to prosecute was not reduced to writing, and the prosecutor who tried Cosby argued that the agreement was not enforceable for this reason. The trial judge agreed. Usually non-prosecution agreements must be in writing. So, the Supreme Court of PA disagreed with the trial judge, which was the right decision, but Cosby is NO victim and his prosecution was not politically-motivated. In fact, failing to prosecute him would be politically-motivated. One of the reasons for the “Me Too” Movement is because high-profile men have gotten away with sexually assaulting women all of the time because of their fame and celebrity. Even if they are brought to justice, securing a conviction is very difficult.
Turley wants to talk about the costs
Natacha efforts to normalize Trump’s criminality, ??? Please apprise what crimes DT has been charged with.??? Your Dem loving Tunnel visioned channel locked mind is just Hate DT. You are falling into Joe Biden’s biasness and loss of sensescense. But that would be par for the course would it not?
The impeachable offenses that trapped Democrats in a web of handspun… handmade tales. The witch hunts and warlock judgments of Me Too. The crimes of plausible (e.g. Floyd’s death), not probable causes. More than 16 trimesters of nationwide insurrections. From Jew privilege to White privilege and wicked solutions, too.
How many men occupying our White House have been sued thousands of times for reneging on contractual obligations, forcing litigation, which coerces settlement on more-favorable terms to save litigation costs, and then bragged about doing this, claiming it proves they are a masterful deal-maker? What it proves is a pattern of fraudulent intent. How many such persons keep 2 sets of books–one for the IRS and for purposes of securing loans, undervaluing assets and another to juice up their ratings in Forbes Magazine? It’s called “fraud”. How many former presidents brag about grabbing women by their genitalia? It’s called “sexual assault.” How many former POTUSs have been successfully sued for fraud (Trump University–$25 M settlement), for housing discrimination (resolved by a consent decree) or have been divorced 3 times for cheating on their spouses? How many have paid off porn stars and nude models? How many had campaigns that colluded with a hostile foreign government to help them get into the White House by spreading lies about their opponent? Read the Mueller Report. Yes, politics is a dirty business, but Trump is an outlier–a misfit. He never belonged in the White House, a conclusion shared by the majority of the American people. He has always had a bad reputation for being a flashy liar, an insubstantial braggart, draft-dodger and unsuccessful at business.
To be sued is a crime now!
Anybody can sue anybody. I’d like it so if you use someone and loose, you pay.
No, being sued isn’t a crime, but entering into a contract with a craftsman, material supplier, construction company other others, with no intention of paying the agreed-upon price, and with the specific intention of forcing them to sue you, then using your paid mouthpiece to run up litigation costs, thus leaving no reasonable alternative other than to settle for less than the agreed-upon price because attorney fees would eat up any recovery, IS fraud. This happened literally thousands of times. Trump brags about it, claiming it makes him a successful deal-maker. Those of us who aren’t narcissists believe it proves he is a crook.
I’ll keep it simple for Natacha. The Mueller report said that there was no collusion between Trump and Russia. Even people of the left such as Jimmy Dore, Matt Taibbi and Glen Greenwald have concluded that RussiaGate was a hoax. Instead of being concerned that the RussiaGate hoax did severe damage to the nation Natacha still tries to have us believe that it was true. I’m beginning to believe that Natacha is married to Adam Schiff and he’s shown her the proof that he has seen in writing. We are all convinced of Natacha’s continuing concern for the good of our country.
“The Mueller report said that there was no collusion between Trump and Russia.”
No it didn’t.
Read the Mueller Report, which is based on sworn statements and other court-admissible evidence. Then, consider the number of criminal indictments, guilty pleas and guilty verdicts. The Mueller Report established that Trump’s campaign accepted help from Russian hackers to spread lies about Hillary Clinton, directed by insider polling that showed where such lies would do the most good, all calculated to sway certain key precincts in certain key states. I don’t even know who those people are you cite, except that I have seen Taibbi once on some program. Trump is the biggest hoax of all.
directed by insider polling that showed where such lies would do the most good, all calculated to sway certain key precincts in certain key states
Russia spent ~$200,000 on facebook ads. Total spent on the Presidential race was very close to $2 billion ($2,000,000,000) But absolutely that $200k is what brought home the victory. Understand also the money was split evenly between the two candidates. If the ads were successful, the net electoral effect would have been a wash. Not advancing either candidate. But successful at sowing distrust in our govt systems and in our elections. Something that was testified to multiple times in front of congress.
Natcha when are you going to learn? The people feeding you talking points are lying to you.
One would think that Natacha would grow weary of the taste of sour grapes. Her selective memory is proven faulty when she forgets that Harry Reid said during the Romney vs Obama election that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid his taxes. He received a “pants on fire” rating for that lie. His response when asked about his lie was, “He didn’t win did he? https://time.com/3765158/harry-reid-mitt-romney-no-taxes/. Natacha forgets The Strom Thurmond rule. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thurmond_rule. Thurmond was a Democratic segregationist who declared that a Supreme Court Justice could not be appointed in an election year at a time when the Republicans were in power. McConnell never forgot what Thurmond did and now the chickens have come home to roost. Natacha and the Democrats like to pitch hardballs but they expect softballs when they’re at the plate. Natacha is not only in a battle with Professor Turley but the facts from Google and Wikipedia have now also become her enemies. Imagine that, a so called educated person who refuses to source Google or Wikipedia before beginning one of her diatribes. Natacha is indeed a special breed. She is a wonderful ambassador for the presentation of the positions of the Democratic Party. Keep up the good work Natacha. Keep up the good work.
Psst … nobody read Natacha ‘cause it’s always whacked.
Meepo, I still think she’s Rosemary’s baby.
Mespo, didn’t Natch once claim Trump caused earthquakes and asteroid impacts?
Mespo: Those too. He seems to be quite powerful. I’m afraid we can’t say the same of Biden. A good day for him is remembering where he is. I wish that were hyperbole.
We’re talking about Trump now, not Romney or Thurmond. Whataboutism isn’t going to change the facts. If you know anything about Google and Wikipedia, then you should be aware that these sources are no more reliable than those who post information there.
I wonder if Cy Vance Jr. and Sista James would have indicted Putin for one or all of his de facto, felonious crimes.
They may have been served a radioactive cocktail in response, and that response by Putin would have been as wrong as the malicious prosecution by “The Cy and Sista James Clown Show.”
“But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”
– Declaration of Independence, 1776
I am sure that JT leaving out the 60 frivolous suits to overturn the election in 2020 was an honest mistake and not a deliberate effort to paint only liberals as doing this.
I am sure that JT leaving out the 60 frivolous suits to overturn the election in 2020
You are very lazy in your use of language, describing the legal efforts to assure the elections of 2020 were open and honest.
Not a single case put in front of a judge was frivolous. Each time, Judges refused to hear evidence and dismissed the case for a variety of legal reasoning. NEVER would a judge allow the admission of evidence. A process that the left should demand. Instead they hide like guilty criminals.
S_Meyer said: Justice Jackson warned us: “times of fear or hysteria” when “political, racial, religious, social, and economic groups, often from the best of motives, cry for the scalps of individuals or groups because they do not like their views. I am four-score years of age, and have never seen hatred for a man as was/is directed at Donald Trump. I did not believe in Conspiricies, Deep state, Establishment, NWO, etc., until I saw the attempts to destroy the man. It is unprcedented and totally unwarranted and there will be a special place in Hell for some of the proceeders. Why has the real John Durham report not been released? Whitwashed to be released to the public. Will the Federal Gov’t lie to the people. Yes indeed. They believe if the Coup facts are released it would destroy the system. No it would give opportunity to heal. There will be non healoing and only destruction will be following. They know when and where the Covid 19 originated. They know that if the US Economy was still up and running under DT, that the Dems could not defeat DT. Was there sufficient fraud in the 2020 election? Time and audits will shed some illuminations thereon.
I believe one of the greatest non-prosecuted crimes in America was / is the allegedly Attempted Coup with Obama and Biden having heads up knowledge and originations.. DT accused of; Russian Collusion, Obstruction, Tax and Financial fraud,, 1-6-2021 insurrection,and the litany could continue. Impeached as the Dem Socialists said from day one. It is established that Mueller knew early on that there was no there there on Collusion or obstruction by DT. Now the last shaft to attempt to shaft DT, the ship has hit the rocks. No Tax evasion charges to come, No financial charges to come. DT is free, out campainging, and if healthy, he will win 2024 election. It will be to the chagrin of all you Socialist supporters. Selah
Truly entertained thinking back to when you were speculating about how Trump had something to worry about in NY state because of its brick and mortar crime capacity, JT.
Noted that you’re taking a stand for Cosby.
Further noted that you’re taking a stand for voting restrictions based on the myth of massive voting fraud while ignoring the fact Georgia and Arizona are the two states where Trump focused the most effort in his election tampering related to the ’20 election. Further intrigued by how you’re making the case that these cases are all politically driven on the part of dems while ignoring that your defenses are much more likely to be politically driven.
Thanks for the giggles, Turley.
We still can’t get Mr. Turley to call out the Dem party for steaking an Election !! And he knows that’s exactly what happened. As I have said before, all those other stuff is pure drivel Mr. Turley if you don’t call out the Election theft. When Socialists are allowed to steal elections we wind up with Hitler led nations.
You see what happens Turley when you don’t condemn the Big Lie? You get Trumpists like rondonmonson who are gullible enough to swallow it. I know for a fact that you don’t believe there was massive fraud. And yet your silence to denounce this lie is as irresponsible as if you stated that it was true. In the law, silence can be regarded as constructive consent.
You will receive YOUR “just desserts,” Professor. I promise you that your peers will not soon forget nor forgive your indefensible silence in the face of Trump’s Big Lie.
Stated as clearly and directly as possible, Jeff. I get the feeling watching this unfold that it’s part Greek tragedy. Turley should at least step up to admit as much as Barr has. Minimally.
I just hope, eb, that someone confronts Turley and asks him why he will not bring himself to condemn the Big Lie.
I have suggested that Turley does not wish to make a public statement against the interest of Fox News in the event he is subpoenaed in the defamation lawsuit.
Fox’s defense will be that it did not promote the Big Lie *knowing* it was false or had good reason to believe it so. Accordingly, I suspect the word has gotten out to its employees to say nothing and, if asked, to deny that Trump’s “Big Lie” was a big lie.
I just hope, eb, that someone confronts Turley and asks him why he will not bring himself to condemn the Big Lie.
It would be more effective to prove the “big lie” wrong. Do the audits and prove President Trump wrong. Just like you proved candidate Trump was not being spied on, or the Transition team wasn’t under illegal survailence. Or the big lie that Hydroxychloroquine might work against covid 19 was proven wrong.
Show me where Turley believes ANY of these claims, and I will accept his opinion. To my knowledge and belief, Turley has never assented to any of them.
Iowan2, the audits have been done. HCQ has been proven to not be an effective treatment for Covid. And Trump and his transition team were being investigated, not spied on.
These are established facts.
“These are established facts. ”
There is one absolutely great thing about being totally ignorant. One doesn’t have to worry about the facts. One doesn’t even have to know how to read in order to be ignorant, nor does one need to understand how to think.
https://c19hcq.com Provides an analysis of 313 studies. Looking at it makes one think, but only if they have the capability of doing so. If they are ignorant, they don’t have to think. They can say whatever they wish.
This site is one of many things one can find on the net if one doesn’t entirely rely on leftist talking points, but the ignorant can save a lot of trouble by being ignorant and repeat whatever someone else told them. You fit very well into that group.
“Iowan2, the audits have been done. HCQ has been proven to not be an effective treatment for Covid. And Trump and his transition team were being investigated, not spied on.”
Half truth as audit results aren’t published yet so not “done.”*;not yet determined but promising#; believed by the most gullible, kids under age 10 and those “willfully blind.”%
* Some reports have as many as 300,000 votes switched to aid Biden but we’ll see: https://www.reuters.com/article/factcheck-arizona-audit/fact-check-results-of-disputed-maricopa-county-arizona-vote-audit-not-yet-released-idUSL2N2OE1WL
#Results: Out of 3,451 COVID-19 patients, 76.3% received HCQ. Death rates (per 1,000 person-days) for patients receiving or not HCQ were 8.9 and 15.7, respectively. After adjustment for propensity scores, we found 30% lower risk of death in patients receiving HCQ (HR=0.70; 95%CI: 0.59 to 0.84; E-value=1.67). Secondary analyses yielded similar results. The inverse association of HCQ with inpatient mortality was particularly evident in patients having elevated C-reactive protein at entry.
HCQ use was associated with a 30% lower risk of death in COVID-19 hospitalized patients. Within the limits of an observational study and awaiting results from randomized controlled trials, these data do not discourage the use of HCQ in inpatients with COVID-19.
AG Garland’s poke at the Georgia hornets’ nest may deliver some unexpected welts.
If perks are going to be taxable than what about all the money given to illegals from cash to housing .
Let’s raise the cost of political litigation even more. Make litigators personally liable for the damage they cause if a case is unfounded.
While we’re at it, subject those who make false accusations of “hate crimes” (Smollett, the one who raised a stink about “eating while black,” etc., e.g.) to the same maximum penalty the alleged perpetrator would face had it been real. Put a stop to that nonsense in a big hurry.
TIP66 With in the US Tax code; there is destinctive difference, and rightly so, of taxing an ostensible dividend ( includes certain Perks to officers, shareholders, upper management,etc) and welfare benefit receipts.
2 more on the radar
Harvey Weinstein: What Bill Cosby’s release means for Harvey Weinstein
Since Bill Cosby walked out of prison a free man after a court overturned his sexual assault conviction, lawyers have found themselves wondering: Could Harvey Weinstein be next?
Jeffrey Epstein’s girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell: Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers cite Cosby case in bid to have charges dropped.
Lawyers for the disgraced socialite Ghislaine Maxwell have asked a judge to throw out her case on sex trafficking charges, citing the recent release from prison of actor Bill Cosby.
Just deserts, not desserts.
You missed the cleverness of the headline.
I guess I did, unless you mean because Cosby used to sell Jello. I don’t know why it’s been changed to the correct spelling.
Perhaps you were right.
Though the corrected headline doesn’t make any sense: “Justice or Just Deserts?”
What’s with the “or”?
I thought the original headline, with “desserts,” was a play on “deserts” — and with “justice or” was meant to convey: Are these prosecutors out for justice or for something and some people that they regard as delicious to eat?
Every time I read of the damage a profession can inflict on our country without risking consequences of their own, the more I’m convinced we need something like a professional credit scoring system.
Politicians and Lawyers would be a great place to start.
With all the crimes on the books, we probably are all guilty of some crime. We are not charged with a crime because we have not caused upset to those who are given the power to bring guilty men to trial. That power is dangerous since it leads to the prosecutor’s ability to choose who should be indicted.
Justice Jackson warned us: “times of fear or hysteria” when “political, racial, religious, social, and economic groups, often from the best of motives, cry for the scalps of individuals or groups because they do not like their views.”
Justice Jackson was a man of great wisdom. I think it was either Stalin of Beria who said name the man and I will find the crime. Do both sides politicise legal processes? The DOJ under Barr appears not to have pursued criminal vendettas against Trump’s enemies. It did not reopen the investigation into Hilary Clinton, and did not prosecute either Comey or McCabe. Barr did not appoint a special prosecutor for Hunter Biden and did not demand an interim report from Durham ahead of the election. Barr’s DOJ did not open a single formal investigation into the many allegations of election fraud. Nor did Barr’s DOJ do much against the criminal destruction wrought in the BLM riots of last summer. Barr aimed to depoliticise special counsel prosecutions when he sought to dismiss the Flynn case and intervened in the sentencing of Roger Stone — any objective analysis would conclude he was right in these instances. In the civil arena there is more room for doubt: I think the support for the challenge to Obama care was political and had little legal merit; on the other hand, the challenges to race-based policies had considerable basis in law. On balance I would say that Barr’s DOJ was not partisan to anything like the extent we see from the Democrats.
Do both sides politicize the legal process? Well, that depends on how sure they are of getting rid of it. Barr did not pursue Comey or McCabe or Biden Minor, and the one who falsified FISA applications was slapped lightly upon the wrists, despite Barr having manifold reasons to launch investigations and to bring arrests, Roger Stone style. Trump was himself impeached for looking into the known and obvious corruption of a former vice president, but the Democrats managed to insulate him by putting him on the ticket and screaming that it was all political. Flynn and Page and the rest were innocent men who found themselves in crosshairs in order to destroy President Trump — before and after his inauguration.
So, yes — Democrats politicize the legal process by criminalizing political differences, *and* they actually commit the crimes of which they accuse Republicans. Win/win for them, I guess.
“With all the crimes on the books, we probably are all guilty of some crime.”
Good book on that topic — _Three Felonies A Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent_
“The average professional in this country wakes up in the morning, goes to work, comes home, eats dinner, and then goes to sleep, unaware that he or she has likely committed several federal crimes that day. Why? The answer lies in the very nature of modern federal criminal laws, which have exploded in number but also become impossibly broad and vague. In Three Felonies a Day, Harvey A. Silverglate reveals how federal criminal laws have become dangerously disconnected from the English common law tradition and how prosecutors can pin arguable federal crimes on any one of us, for even the most seemingly innocuous behavior.”
It is ironic that Democrats are complaining (falsely) that the Georgia voting law is a “Jim Crow” law, when it was Democratic states and localities who imposed them during and after Reconstruction. The Saul Alinsky method is always to accuse others of what you do yourself. More and more people are seeing through this charade.
While wildly obvious, this column still needed to be written.
We should all join in the fun. Lets all name some lawfare prosecutions, extra points for prosecutions, convictions and then full exonerations. I’ll limit myself, so as not to steal all the good ones.
1. Speaker of the House Tom Delay. Charged, tried, and convicted. Not a peep out the judge. Case thrown out after conviction.
2. Senator Ted Stevens.
2a. Governor Sarah Palin. For some reason, all the criminal investigations were halted when she was no longer Governor.
But there are MANY more. If you look hard enough, you might even find one Democrat that got “lawfared” But I can’t remember any.
The prosecutorial decision making of the feds is increasingly inscrutable. And disturbing. One local example:
But there are many others. They decline to prosecute Epstein but now it’s gangbusters against Maxwell? Is it simply a matter of headlines?
The next time a prosecutor or legislator says “No one is above the law,” I wish a journalist would say, “What about you? Don’t you have absolute immunity for your actions?”
Professor Turley, I admire your demonstrated commitment to the Rule of Law; I hope it continues.
Anon: “Professor Turley, I admire your demonstrated commitment to the Rule of Law; I hope it continues.”
I was thinking the same and intended to say something like it, but your statement is too good to need supplement.
You did make me wonder, though, just why the professor seems to be almost a lone voice among law professors supporting the rule of law.
There are a few others, but there should be many more.
As for judges and justices, expediency and ideology shouldn’t replace law but that is happening too often. It is outrageous that the Court allowed the CDC, a mere administrative agency, to issue rules on evictions. Kavanaugh didn’t even pretend that his part in it was based on what we used to call law.
The entire system is in danger when the courts ignore the law.
Turley says: “There is no question that such tax violations can be charged criminally; however, if they prosecuted all untaxed executive perks, half of Manhattan would be frog-marched to the hoosegow.”
Good. There is no safety in numbers when it comes to violating the law. By Turley’s logic, we should not enforce laws against speeding because half the drivers in American would be given tickets. Turley’s bogus argument may work in the court of public opinion, but it would be laughed out of court.
Jeff, do you really think that having the charged CFO in handcuffs with Vance and the AG marching along is “normal”? This is the most egregious example of political prosecutorial partisanship since the Roger Stone arrest by a SWAT TEAM and SEEN LIVE ON CNN.
Jeff, why not try to actually dispute what the good Professor says instead of just adding your usual juvenile, cheap, banal far left replies.
Hullbobby, Jeff is a self-proclaimed attorney who spends his time giving attorneys a bad name.
First, you insult my replies as “juvenile, cheap, banal far left,” and then you ask for more! Why?
Jeff, you are “juvenile, cheap, banal far left,” no matter what else was said.
His point was we should not enforce laws selectively. For example, people with BIden bumper stickers should not be disproportionately given speeding tickets
I think you are misstating his position. He appears to oppose only selective prosecutions for partisan objectives. Don’t you?
Maybe if you agree that laws should be followed, then you should advocate changing the tax law so the gray areas disappear.
Maybe Vance should be charged, because if one scrutinized his books one would find similar accusations against him. Nothing would be found against you, because you are as pure as snow in your mind. However, at the same time that snow melts when one considers some of the libel you have spewed on the blog.
Scooter….as usual you misinterpret the Good Professor’s teachings…..but then you view things though a very odd prism that causes you do think see exactly opposite of what is being portrayed.
You plainly refuse to see reality….and that is so typical of those of your. ilk.
Back under the Bridge with you.
Jeff, For some reason there was no reply bar for me to use to address your posting on July 4th 8:31 pm. Maybe I just don’t know how to use the machine .So here is my reply.
Calling a major public office holder a chronic and habitual liar is a massive redundancy. My guess is that if any recent President was held to the same scrutiny as Trump, ( The WaPo lie counter for instance )the count would be similar. But that is never going to happen to a Democrat. I also do not remember networks having ” fact checkers” prior to Trump. Now I know the weaselly explanation for this is ” Well Trump lied more” . Which is a totally convoluted explanation. And I don’t believe all lies are equal. I have told my wife many times I loved her hairstyle when asked even though I hated it. Now I have never cheated on my wife but if I did Lying about that is certainly more significant than the hairstyle lie.
You say Trump has NEVER admitted to a lie. True. With the exception of Clinton who was trying to avoid being removed from office, name me one President who has admitted that he lied. This is not a defense of Trump. My point is the overt hatred of him by the left wing press has subjected him to unprecedented scrutiny. And I really appreciate your 2001 A Space Odyssey reference.
There is opposition research and then there is a flat out accumulation of demonstrable lies. You say Steele had to ” believe” that his work product was true. When compiling a document that can literally impact the world you have to ‘KNOW ” not just believe. Even Trump hating Strzok said the dossier was unrealiable. Again drawing on your legal knowledge, and I know we are not talking about a legal proceeding, is it ok to put on evidence that you BELIEVE? But his goal was to compile a document to take out Trump. There is anecdotal evidence that this whole ” plot ” was to circumvent the Hillary private server narrative that was in the news, albeit reluctantly, at the time. I can’t prove it but I think it is very possible. And Steele did his job . Through Bruce Orr no less. He would have been incredibly employable again had he not gone to the press for a little extra cash.
You say Trump consorts with prostitutes. I guess Stormy fits. Maybe. The Playboy bunny? You wish you could have had her. And I find it comical that those on the left go down the philandering road on Trump, when their guy, Clinton, was having sex repeatedly with a vulnerable early 20’s intern, in the WHITE HOUSE no less. I am going to show my age here but in the dictionary next to misogynist is a picture of Clinton. And my guess is we are going to get a lot of Epstein/ Clinton comingling evidence in the future. And I know there are pictures of Trump with Epstein. But he kicked him out of Mar-A Lago. Also unlike Clinton, no evidence of being on the Lolita Express or Pedophile island. And I didn’t know the urination was an extra charge. I guess you do. ( A joke, no malice intended).
Jeff says, ” I don’t believe nor has the mainstream media claimed that Russia effected the election results”. I guess we have to define MSM. If you include cnn and msnbc that was the narrative for years. And they were getting their talking points directly from Hillary and the DNC. I try never to state anything as fact unless I have seen it with my own eyes or heard it with my own ears. You know how much stating hearsay as fact can hurt. The Russia story counts. Now I don’t recall anyone saying that the Russians hacked the voting machines. That is true. But everything else. I think at last count Hillary was up to 62 excuses for losing. My favorite being Macedonian computer hackers.
On the ” suckers and losers” , you are really going to try to use the ” has it been 100% proven that he did not say it.” Really? The burden of proof is to prove a negative? It has not been 100% proven that von Daniken’s ” Chariots of the Gods” is not true either. Again, I am going to defer to your legal knowledge, acknowledging that we are not in a court of law. You might want to re think that last point.
On the victimhood, Please show me the last time a person who identifies as a conservative has used ” safe space” “triggered” or ” microaggression”. Which to me are victimhood embracing nomenclature.
Thank you again for your respectful reply.
Hope you had a nice 4th.
“My guess is that if any recent President was held to the same scrutiny as Trump, ( The WaPo lie counter for instance )the count would be similar.”
Paul, I consider you a friendly fellow, but if you truly believe that statement, then I believe you are deluded and a certifiable Trumpist. I can’t help but be frank with you. There is no point discussing that issue further- we are diametrically opposed.
True, no president will admit he outright lied. It would be too humiliating. I think Reagan more or less did so about Iran/Contra when he conceded that what he said was false but in his heart he was telling the truth (or words to that effect). Certainly, Clinton profusely apologized for his affair. Trump is a different animal. He doubles down on his lies! And calls his accusers “fake news” or “enemies of the people” unlike any previous president because he is in a class by himself.
Regarding the Steele dossier, there is just one little problem with your conspiracy theory, Hilary never used it during the campaign, and it was leaked by McCain to the FBI (correct me if I am mistaken).
And let me dispose of another red herring- this argument that there were those in the FBI who hated Trump which prejudice induced them to break the law. It is utterly IMMATERIAL that an agent hates or loves the subject of an investigation. We do not live in a totalitarian country where the government may control how you feel and what you think. Which is why agents TAKE AN OATH to uphold their duty irrespective. Lawful performance of their duty is all that a government can demand in a free society. And Inspector Horowitz did not find that any agents- with one exception- violated their oaths despite their beliefs. Period.
I don’t begrudge Trump for enjoying the company of young women. Unlike Stormy, the playboy bunny was a Sugar Baby just like our First Lady. Certainly there are allegations of sexual assault and worse against both Clinton and Trump. I don’t know who is a worse. I didn’t vote for either. The Epstein affair is quite intriguing. He is accused of sex trafficking. Can one traffic sex to oneself? If not, then to whom did he traffic his women? I wonder if Ghislaine will corroborate some of the allegations in the public domain to reduce her sentence. Unless the women were underage, it would be difficult to prosecute rich and powerful Sugar Daddies who showered money and gifts onto willing (of age) Sugar Babies. Not unlike what Matt Gaetz will claim as his defense.
I have watched MSNBC for years, and I categorically dispute your contention that it ever claimed that Russia interference affected the election results. NO ONE COULD EVER PROVE THAT. So why would MSNBC have claimed it. They covered the investigation of attempted interference and whether there was a Trump campaign conspiracy with the Russians. Such a finding would have been damning enough even though it would not have overturned the election.
I agree that Hilary made some irresponsible and possibly false accusations. Frankly, I don’t pay her much attention. I did not vote for her either. I have distrusted her since the Clinton Impeachment. I lost all my respect for her way back then.
Regarding “suckers and losers,” were we in a court of law, I would not find Trump guilty of making that statement unless the whistleblower/eyewitness took the stand and his story and credibility were NOT impeached by cross-examination. Even so, I would give Trump the benefit of the doubt unless more than one earwitness took the stand. When Mr. Bone-spurs, however, boasted on the Howard Stern show that avoiding STDs while dating was his personal Vietnam, believing “suckers and losers” is not a stretch of the imagination…..
Of course, Conservatives are not going to say the words “safe spaces,” or “triggered,” but they nonetheless want their high schools to become safe spaces for their kids lest they get triggered by being confronted with the harsh reality of CRT. CRT is no different than the MeToo movement. Men were enlightened how not to treat women disrespectfully- often unconsciously. Now whites will have to grapple with the attitudes which they have taken for granted with blacks. I honestly admit that I would not wish to be born black even in 2021. That fact proves to me that being black is still a disadvantage in this predominantly white country. That does not mean there is overt racial *prejudice* but rather an unconscious *bias* for one’s own- all else being equal. It’s not a great sin- but it remains an unfair tip of the scales.
This is the type of nonsense that spews from Jeff’s crayon.
“Hilary never used it during the campaign”
She had others use it for her. Every item you mention is similarly lacking reality or is used to temporarily show yourself as a centrist. That would be a Big Lie, but go ahead and lie about what you are. When you are done lying you can blame Trump for your lack of education.
Jeff, Nothing further on the amount of scrutiny disagreement. There is no verifiable way to prove a legitimate amount of lies told by anyone. What one person calls a lie another might call hyperbole. I will respect your wish and not discuss that any more. I am going to put this in the column of respectful disagreement.
On the Steele dossier, maybe Killary didn’t quote the dossier directly but she certainly accused the Russians of helping Trump. And her minions like Podesta and Fallon did use information from the dossier many times. Aided by the left wing media. I her defense, it is common practice for candidates, especially for higher office to use proxies to do the ” dirty work”
On Epstein, No woman should be ” trafficked”. But the outrage of the Epstein issue is the the woman involved were predominately if not entirely minors. And I am sure that Ghislane will trade prominent names for a favorable sentence. If she lives long enough.
On msnbc, I guess I will defer to you as I am not a loyal viewer. I have only watched occasionally .But when I did it was virtually anti Trump all of the time. It was like nothing else was going on in the world. Now I only watched in prime time but I doubt that the programming was any different during the day. At least Maddow was interesting. O’Donnell is a complete moron.
I have no doubt that Russia ” interfered” in the election. And if their intent was to sow massive discord amongst the American people ( which is what I think was the goal) MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!
Before I go down the CRT road, I think we have to agree on the definition. Because every I time I read about it being taught in K-12, which was denied until this week when the largest teacher’s union said they would teach it regardless of local laws prohibiting it, it was said that those opposing it don’t know what it is. Here is my understanding of the basic tenants. The U.S. was founded mainly on racist principles. And that all whites are oppressors and all Blacks are oppressed. From birth. And all white people have to admit that they are inherently racist, or the lack of such admission is proof that they are racist. Heads I win tails you lose. I am sure there is more to it but if anything that I have put forth is not true please correct me. We can discuss it’s merits and usefulness after agreeing on a definition, ok?
On the MeToo movement, My recollection is that this was borne out of the Harvey Weinstein abuses. Who was a major Democratic donor and Clinton confidant. It has been said that what was going on was the worst kept secret in Hollywood. They even joked about it at the Oscars. How sick!! But I would expect nothing less from these lefty Hollywood
You said ” Men were enlightened how not to treat women disrespectfully- often unconsciously” I don’t agree. I was taught by my parents to treat woman, and all people respectfully. I didn’t need a ” movement” to enlighten me. Now I understand that I did not have the power of a Weinstein, but I did own a company with many women employees. And it NEVER occurred to me to make having sex with me to be a condition of their employment. If you think that those who are predisposed to taking advantage of women because of their real or perceived power, are going to think twice about doing it because of MeToo you are delusional . They might change their tactics some but those without morals do not acquire them from a movement.
Thanks again for you reply. Eagerly awaiting our next communication.
Our amicable discussion is setting a good example in comparison to what typically is exchanged between those on the Left and Right on this blog. I’m sure our respectful interaction is what Turley had hoped his blog would manifest instead of the vitriol and vituperation so often evidenced here.
You said: “There is no verifiable way to prove a legitimate amount of lies told by anyone. What one person calls a lie another might call hyperbole.”
At the risk of offending you, I don’t agree to disagree on Trump’s mendacity (as you propose), for I don’t believe it is difficult to determine a verifiable lie. Common sense would dictate that Trump is an inveterate liar. Hyperbole means “gross exaggeration,” and it is a euphemism for lying. I will not yield on this point because I can’t think of anyone who lies more constantly and flagrantly than Trump. He is sui generis.
Unlike MSNBC with which I am most familiar, I agree that Hillary did accuse the Russians of aiding Trump’s election win. But I have said, I don’t trust her. The Rightwing media has an incentive to accuse the entire Left as claiming that there was a criminal conspiracy with the Russians in order to discredit it. But I contend that MSNBC only suspected it for good reason, but waited for the Mueller Report in order to determine it one way or the other. The Left rightly claims that there was collusion that did not amount to a criminal conspiracy.
I hope you are suggesting that someone may kill Maxwell before she can speak at trial. You think that Epstein was murdered?
Of course, MSNBC covered Trump 24/7 as did Fox. He was ratings gold! The difference being that the former network exposed his lies, and the latter broadcasted them which led to the 1/6 Capitol attack and the two defamation lawsuits for spreading the Big Lie. Now, Fox won’t broadcast Trump’s rallies or mention the Big Lie. The billion dollar lawsuits are holding it accountable for broadcasting recklessly.
You suppose that CRT holds:
“The U.S. was founded mainly on racist principles. And that all whites are oppressors and all Blacks are oppressed. From birth. And all white people have to admit that they are inherently racist, or the lack of such admission is proof that they are racist. Heads I win tails you lose.”
If your understanding of CRT is accurate, I would agree that it is hogwash. Will it surprise you to learn that I don’t believe your description of this academic theory is credible? I confess that I have not studied CRT, but from what I have gleaned by those defending it is that the alleged racism is far more subtle and insidious than you claim. You would have me believe that CRT theorists are Black Panthers or followers of Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam. From my perspective, I believe that the demagogues on the Right have an obvious incentive to distort the academic purpose of CRT in order to create a wedge issue in the culture war. I don’t believe the Right’s claim that CRT amounts to “never trust Whitey.”
You say: “I was taught by my parents to treat woman, and all people respectfully. I didn’t need a ” movement” to enlighten me.”
Good for you. If only every man was a gentleman like yourself. Surely, you don’t believe that the MeToo movement was a hoax? That sexual abuse was confined to the Hollywood casting couch? You don’t think the MeToo movement was a wake-up call to men who hold positions of power over women? That the verdicts against powerful figures like Cosby and Weinstein are not effective deterrents? If not, then what is the point of punishment? I’ll grant that jail does not instill moral compunction, but hopefully the MeToo movement will make *otherwise moral men* aware of less obvious harassing behaviors which had never occurred to them because of the male hierarchal tradition. I’ve taken to watching old Sitcoms like “All in the Family” and “Maude,” and it is striking to see how much gender and racial attitudes have drastically changed since the early 1970’s! It’s amazing to observe what then was taken for granted is no longer….
Jeff, thank you again for your reply. I too am pleased with our respectful discourse. I am on this blog because I am fascinated by the law, it’s application and how it effects the lives of Americans. I don’t think you prove your point or give the appearance of higher intelligence by lying, being hypocritical or presenting your position in a disrespectful manner. I try to avoid that at all costs. I am however a big fan of sarcasm.
I can’t imagine you offending me. Unlike many today, one of my goals here is to NOT live in an” echo chamber”. I NEED to hear the other side. If I don’t, how can I grow intellectually? As I said before I try to never state anything as fact unless I have seen it with my own eyes, hear it with my own ears and in the cases where that is not possible, not being asked to ignore common sense. An example of this would be the cnn reporter clothed in riot gear, in front of a burning building, over the chyron of
” mostly peaceful protests”. I refuse to dispel basic human brain activity. As I am sure you have surmised , a ” hot button ” for Turley is free speech. It is definitely under attack by the Left. At Cal Berkeley ” the birthplace of free speech” in the 60’s , conservative speakers are routinely prohibited from speaking. And on most campuses. If you think that they are wrong why not confront them? My guess is you would. Vietnam service liar Sen. Blumenthal tried to get Twitter, Facebook etc. to censor everyone that is a ” climate denier” .Up until a few weeks ago your were censored on Facebook for even suggesting that the Covid virus came from the lab. Why? In my mind it is very plausible. But because Trump suggested it it must be ” disinformation”. Is the American public so stupid that we need Tech companies, with the blessing of our government to ” protect us”. I don’t need protecting. And I doubt you do either.
Although we disagree on the hyperbole application I am not asking or expecting you to yield. You say you can prove a verifiable lie. Conceded. I think I may not have worded my point correctly. My point was that we all lie. But as stated before all lies are not equal. And you use words like ” Habitual” ‘Constantly” and” Flagrantly”. These words lead me to believe that you are most outraged by the sheer numbers rather than the veracity. I don’t agree that even if true, which I will concede, this should be THE major flash point. I am not a Trump fan. As stated previously I don’t want him to run. But as far as major policy decisions I think this country was much better off with him than the current, obviously mental acuity deficient man we now have sitting in the Oval Office. And the possible successor is even worse. He can’t even navigate a Teleprompter. He admits he only calls on pre approved ” journalists”. Sometimes with the aid of identifying pictures. He says he can’t answer questions ” because he will get in trouble”. And even though that answer is ridiculous and in my mind scary, no one from the complicit press ever asks the next logical question” WITH WHO?”
The giving a list of 16 entities to Putin that were forbidden to cyber attack may be one of the worst foreign policy maneuvers that I have ever seen. Although I think Putin probably knows where we are most vulnerable, you give him a list to verify it? And imply that anything not on the list is ok to attack? I get it. You hate Trump. But this guy was the best the other side could come up with? My contention is that if you put all Biden voters on a polygraph and asked them if they voted for Biden or against Trump it would be like 90% against Trump. That doesn’t bode well for our country. I didn’t vote for Obama. But I was never afraid while he was President. I was sometimes angered but not afraid. With this guy I am afraid. And one of the reasons is I am not sure who is really calling the shots. I have a guess but I don’t want to be called a conspiracy theorist. But let me just say that I don’t believe that Lee Harvey Oswald killed JFK alone.
You are obviously against any form of racism, as am I . But who is the real racist here? You say racism can be subtle and insidious. I agree. It can also be the “Soft ” racism exhibited by our President. The racism of low expectations. Just this week G.P.A. requirements were removed for potential teachers. This is to ” help people of color”. It infers that POC are not capable of an acceptable G.P.A. ” I don’t want my children to grow up in a racial jungle”,” poor kids are just as smart as white kids”,” if you don’t know who to vote for you ain’t black”, blacks can’t find vaccination sites because they don’t know how to use the Internet”,” Hispanics are not getting vaccinated because they fear deportations”. There are many more. Which President was it that gave the eulogy At KKK Grand Wizard Byrd’s funeral? He even used the “n”: word . Can you imagine what the press would have done to Trump if he had done ANY of these things?
You say ” I hope you are suggesting that someone may kill Maxwell before she can speak at trial”. Did you mean I hope you are NOT saying that someone may kill Maxwell before she speaks at trial?
And given the choice of suicide or murder, without seeing the actual evidentiary report I would choose murder. Too many ” coincidences” . Taken off of suicide watch for no apparent reason, cellmate removed, multiple guards not watching the cell monitors of the most high profile prisoner in the facility just to name a few. Many if not all murder investigators will tell you a red flag goes up when there are too many ” coincidences”.
On the MSNBC coverage, yes Trump was ratings gold. But my contention is, even with my limited viewing, it was with the exclusion of virtually everything else. Although Fox had a preponderance of Trump coverage I can tell you from watching with my own eyes that is was not to the virtual exclusion of every other newsworthy topic. And on the lawsuits ,I can’t wait for discovery if it gets that far. I am a betting man and I will bet any amount you want that Fox is not found liable in a court of law. Settlements don’t count. You as a lawyer know many times settling without admission of guilt is common. But I don’t think that will be the resolution.
On CRT, I gave you what I thought were the basic tenants .You say that I am wrong, I guess. You say that you have not significantly studied it so how can you say that my assertions are incorrect? I never said anything about Farrakhan or the Panthers. And neither has anyone else . And on the Panthers, up until 5 years ago I lived in Chicago my whole life. I now live in a suburb. And the Panthers though militant, did a lot of good things for their community. At least in Chicago. Fred Hampton, who was murdered, set up kitchens and learning centers for youth in his community. That is to be admired. And NOBODY is saying that teachers should be prohibited
from teaching about slavery, Jim Crow or racism , past or present. Maybe upon further investigation you can tell me what you personally gleaned from CRT. I have never heard those on the right say CRT has a component of ” Don’t trust Whitey”. That is either a total lie or a tremendous misinterpretation.
No I don’t believe the MeToo movement was a hoax. Or that is is confined to Hollywood. Jail sentences can be a deterrent but there is also the concept of punishment for wrong doing. I am against the death penalty for moral reasons but on the practical side it is not a deterrent. That doesn’t mean murderers should not be punished. I too watch show from the 70’s. And I am amazed at how far we have progressed. As a matter of fact If you promised to give me a $ million I could not name 5 prime time non news shows. I prefer to watch sports.
Thank you again for your respectful , insightful reply. If you ever come to Chicago, dinner is on me.
Looking forward to you response
Thanks for taking so much time to reply. If only more people on this site were like you!
You said, “As I am sure you have surmised , a ”hot button” for Turley is free speech. It is definitely under attack by the Left.”
I can’t speak for the Left, but I have a profound disagreement with Turley on free speech grounds. The First Amendment prohibits censorship by *government.* Turley would extend that prohibition to private corporations, what he refers to as “Little Brother.” I don’t. Everyone may speak to their heart’s content if they can find someone willing to listen, but the government cannot force anyone to listen nor oblige a private corporation to provide a platform for them to speak. Unlike government, we are free to discriminate against any speech we don’t wish to hear.
All these tech companies are private companies. And I applaud their filtering out lies and conspiracy theories. If you don’t like their policies, there are many sites on the internet where you can find anything you want. You may disagree about what they should filter out, but that is a matter of opinion, not a matter of free speech. Freedom to ignore is as Constitutional as freedom to speak.
I have conceded that Biden is apparently suffering a mental deterioration. I just wish Trumpists would be as honest in acknowledging that Trump is a chronic and habitual liar. Neither man is suited to be the leader of the free world- that much I’ll agree with you!
You said, “I get it. You hate Trump. But this guy was the best the other side could come up with? My contention is that if you put all Biden voters on a polygraph and asked them if they voted for Biden or against Trump it would be like 90% against Trump. That doesn’t bode well for our country.”
Paul, I don’t hate Trump; I’ve never met the man. I hate his lies. I don’t hate Cosby personally, but I hate his misconduct. Can you not see that your claim that I hate Trump (which accounts for my argument against him) is EXACTLY the same tactic that Conservatives resent when they are called “racists” for wanting to augment and enforce Immigration laws. Calling someone a “racist” is asserting that they are haters and not thinkers. It is an illegitimate tactic by which those on the Right and the Left try to silence their respective opponents. Please don’t succumb to it. A hater can make a valid argument! Emotions have nothing to do with Reason.
You have referenced a lot of Biden statements in which you claim they exhibit his “racism of low expectations.” In order to underscore the point in my previous paragraph, permit me to answer your argument by simply stating, “You hate Biden. I get it.”
Just for the record, I do believe that Oswald acted alone. The single bullet theory has been scientifically proven to my satisfaction thanks to modern computer forensics unavailable until relatively recently. I doubt that there was a conspiracy, but be that as it may, he was the lone shooter as far as I am concerned. And, the recently reported UFO’s, whatever they are, they are 100% not alien.
Yes, I meant to say that I hope you are NOT suggesting that Maxwell will be killed. I think we may have hit the nub of our different ways of looking at the world. As a lawyer, I have been trained to require proof beyond a reasonable doubt with quality evidence (not hearsay) and always subject to rigorous cross-examination. I don’t believe in any fashionable conspiracy theories. I do believe in coincidences. I believe in science and reason. Conservatives in general (and Trumpists in particular) reject reason and science in favor of faith. Religion is the antithesis of reason and science. If you can believe in a supernatural and omnipotent being who is attentive to your earthly prayers, then you can believe ANYTHING. Believing Trump’s lies is nothing compared to believing in a god. The ancients can be forgiven for explaining the natural world by creating gods, but there is no excuse to believe such obvious nonsense given modern day science. And yet religious people continue to close their eyes to facts just like Trumpists.
We will have to await to see the outcome of the defamation lawsuits against Fox News. I am not a betting man. The only time I gamble is when I eat at a new restaurant! I have a feeling that the lawsuit will be settled out of court for an undisclosed amount without an admission of guilt on the part of Fox. I’m sure the very last thing Fox would like everyone to witness is their talent being subjected to withering cross-examination under penalty of perjury. I have no doubt that Fox will pay whatever it takes to avoid that embarrassment. Hopefully, Fox will have learned an expensive lesson, that is, not to invite liars onto its shows in order to broadcast their lies to its gullible audience. But for Fox, 1/6 would not have happened.
I was engaging in sarcasm (which you enjoy) when I parodied those contesting CRT as epitomizing “don’t trust Whitey.” Seriously, I do not trust the characterization of CRT by those who oppose CRT. I think you would agree that those opposed to something are inclined to create a straw man out of that which they oppose. I will try to read up on CRT, but you’ll forgive me if I suspect that those opposed to it are acting in bad faith not unlike Conservative claims that Progressives are Socialists for advocating a raise in the minimum wage.
Hey, we agree on the death penalty! I too believe it is immoral because it is unnecessary given the Constitutionality of life without parole. Society wants to affirm and instill in its populace the sanctity of human life. Which is more persuasive: execute murderers and proclaim notwithstanding, “do what we say and not what we do;” or just never kill anybody *unnecessarily*. Period.
I love to watch college football and lacrosse. Not a fan of professional sports. Too much showboating. I’m kinda worried about the new NCAA rules only to the extent that they will engender resentment among the players who are not getting compensated like the stars on their teams.
I may take you up on your gracious offer. Thanks.
Jeff, thanks again for your reply. I also took note of your reference to Karen S. and myself in a reply to Iowan2. I am a big fan of Karen S. I take what you said as a compliment.
On the free speech, I agree the 1st Amendment deals governmental censorship only. And I am find myself very frustrated with the amount of power that ” Little Brother” has. This is a very interesting conundrum for both the Left and the Right. Both want to remove and/ or modify section 230. As you probably know 230 was a reaction to Prodigy. But I think that people should understand that in our ever evolving world of technology we are in an entirely different world now. The power of social media dwarfs the influential powers of traditional media outlets of the past. Like local newspapers and before the semi recent advent of cable T.V., I grew up with NBC, CBS, ABC and on a much lesser scale , PBS. I read the Chicago Tribune in the morning and the Chicago American ( later Chicago Today) in the afternoon every day. My grade school friends used to make fun of me because in the mornings when they would ” call on me” I would be reading the paper while drinking a cup of coffee. My mom encouraged me to read as much as possible. Sorry for the history. My point is that the unprecedented influence of social media is something to be explored. I read somewhere that 65% of people get their news from Facebook. Now I am not a Zuckerberg fan , but I don’t begrudge him his billions.
An aspect that needs to be considered is that I cannot think of one liberal who has been kicked off or suspended by any social media site. Ali Khamenei has called for the elimination of Israel with zero consequences but Dan Bongino is kicked off of Twitter .As stated before ,people were censored by Facebook for even suggesting that the virus originated in the Wuhan lab. And their ” fact checkers” used totally corrupt and compromised Peter Daszak as their ” source”.
The obvious comeback is ” then don’t use social media” or ” start an alternative site”. As a free market conservative I really cannot argue with those points. And I know I probably don’t have a legal leg to stand on here, and this was due to poor planning, when Parlar tried to provide an alternative to liberal Dorsey’s Twitter it was crushed by Amazon and Apple. I would have loved for someone to explore an anti trust angle here. Maybe the answer here is to declare the social media companies common carriers. People like DuPont, Rockefeller, Morgan and Ford while exploiting workers and unfairly crushing competition ( how ironic given the tactics of today’s Tech giants) were at that time doing nothing illegal. But Hoover and later FDR got anti trust laws passed to reign them in. For the good of the country. I know there’s no free speech issue here but it is the government intervening in private enterprise. Is there a possible legal correlation here? Maybe? You applaud them” filtering out lies and conspiracy theories”. But the overarching problem is who decides what are lies and conspiracy theories. I know I am showing my frustration here but, these ” fact checkers ” are extremely compromised. I compare this to the ridiculousness of until recently Jennifer Rubin was calling herself a conservative voice on WaPo. And they are talking about Ana Navarro replacing McCain as the conservative voice on
” the View”. Give me a break. Even when they try to appear fair their efforts are insulting. I would never watch that trash but I would love to see them hire Candace Owens. And I would look forward to Joyless calling her a white supremacist. I know this is a legal blog but it would be disingenuous to say that politics is not a major component. I guess I would just like something approaching a level playing field. Whether that can be by statute remains to be seen. I know this was more of a rant than a counterpoint, Thank you for your indulgence.
I knew using the word ” hate” was a mistake after re reading my last post. I apologize. We are copasetic in hating concepts, ideas and positions taken and not individual human beings. I agree with your analyzation and I take to heart your advice. I really don’t ever want to become one of ” them”. And I don’t hate Biden. Do you find the comments I put forth attributed to Biden racist?. He is not a person that I could even potentially hate. I was going to say I feel sorry for him. Embarrassing himself on almost a daily basis,. But he willfully took on this challenge. I am a very competitive person. And if I had failed miserably at any competition in my life twice, my instincts would probably compel me to take another bite at the apple if given the chance. But my guess is that I would come to some sort of reckoning and my loved ones around me would help me be content with whatever achievements I had produced in my life . The exact opposite happened here. I said on the day that Biden was elected he would not serve out his entire term. I might have to reconsider given that Kamala has been such a disaster. I think he will have to complete his term in a Woodrow Wilson type Administration. I am sure you know what I am referring to. As far as 2024, I certainly don’t think that he is going to be the candidate that would be the oldest President in history. And quite honestly I did not find him very impressive in his younger years. Although I try to keep an open mind I can’t imagine a Democratic that I would vote for in the next election. Especially as I believe any candidate would be held hostage by the far left. And I don’t think the candidate will be either Biden or Harris. This will be very interesting to watch.
I am looking forward to the Inauguration of President De Santis on Jan. 20, 2025.I hope we are still communicating then.
On Oswald, my consternation does not rest solely on the single bullet theory. You believe in coincidences, I , in many cases don’t. There are many that bother me . Most deal with tainted or compromised evidence. The body was removed from Parkland illegally according to Texas law. The limousine, basically the crime scene,
” washed” before it could be inspected by law enforcement. Kennedy’s brain which certainly could have verified bullet angles mysteriously disappears. The autopsy was done by an inexperience and compromised pathologist. Oswald was murdered by Ruby ( Rubenstein) who was from Chicago and was definitely connected to the Mob. There are more. I read Edward J Epstein’s book Inquest in 1966. I was 8 years old. I have been fascinated by the assassination ever since. I have read many books on the subject. And have also read Posner’s Case Closed rejecting any conspiracy. Maybe a discussion for another time.
I STRONGLY reject you hypothesis that conservatives reject reason and science. You can believe in a higher power, which the vast majority of the people do, and still apply reason and science to everyday problem solving. I don’t believe they are mutually excusive. I am glad that you state believing in Trump’s lies is not commensurate with believing in God. But on the science front, I keep hearing that the Democratic Party is ” The Party of Science ” And the Republicans are deniers
The science argument usually come up in discussions about climate change. Which if you were to believe the father of ” Global Warming” Al Gore, Manhattan should have been under water by 2000. And if you believe Climate Czar Kerry, who only flies private ( hypocrite) the Polar ice cap should have been melted by 2010. But back to science. The last time I looked Biology was a science. With the exception of hermaphrodites, who make up far less than 1 % of the population, if you have the xy chromosome makeup YOU ARE MALE. If you have 2 x chromosomes YOU ARE FEMALE. It doesn’t matter what you ” identify ” as. Now you can dress the way you want, have all the surgeries you want ( provided you have reached the age of majority) , take all the pills you want and have sex with anyone you please, not children of course, I don’t care. But you cannot biologically ( science) change your gender .I am particularly outraged at the transgender men competing in women’s sports. This is outrageously unfair. I can’t believe the ” feminists” are not outraged at this. My guess is that they are inextricably tied to the liberal ” woke” values.
Although we obviously discuss politics I would prefer to keep religion off the table. I will engage if you wish, I certainly cannot advocate for less censorship and put conditions on our conversation. It is a request not a condition or demand. I, like you, abhor hypocrisy. As touched on before I will ignore the venial lie. I will call out hypocrisy not some of the time, EVERY time. I know you view Turley’s contributions on Fox at times hypocritical. We disagree.
I think Fox will probably settle. But not for the same reason. This is a nuisance law suit. Typically it costs more to litigate than to settle. And I will put forth that there will be a similar outcome in the cases brought by Mike Lindell. So as we say in gambling, it is a push.
On CRT, I guess more investigation is needed. I did find it a little comical that many proponents of CRT like Joyless Reid consistently denied that it was being taught K- 12. That those opposing were putting up the previously stated” strawman” argument. Well this week the NEA, the country’s largest teachers union said they would be teaching it K-12 even in states were there were laws prohibiting it. As a matter of fact they not only were amassing a legal fund to ” protect” the teachers from a legitimate lawsuit, they were also hoping to raise money to counter any anti CRT advocates in any way possible .As a lawyer are you advocating for these teachers to break the law? As of right now I am unaware of any Constitutional challenges to the laws passed. Just as a side note, the facts that I have stated along with some others have been scrubbed from the NEA’s website. Why do you think that is?
Great on the death penalty.
And my previous maniacal, all encompassing devotion to professional sports has waned. Sports is an escape from the rigors of everyday life for me. And admittedly sometimes I have a financial interest in the outcome. But all of interjection of politics has killed off much of my enthusiasm. And the Cubs stink.
Looking forward to your reply.
“. As a free market conservative I really cannot argue with those points. And I know I probably don’t have a legal leg to stand on here”
On section 230 plus a few other things in the article.
“That doesn’t mean the companies are violating the First Amendment, but it does suggest that the government, in working through private companies, is abridging the freedom of speech … Some Southern sheriffs, long ago, used to assure Klansmen that they would face no repercussions for suppressing the speech of civil-rights marchers. Under the Constitution, government cannot immunize powerful private parties in the hope that they will voluntarily carry out unconstitutional policy.”
You must be retired! You said:
“An aspect that needs to be considered is that I cannot think of one liberal who has been kicked off or suspended by any social media site. Ali Khamenei has called for the elimination of Israel with zero consequences but Dan Bongino is kicked off of Twitter.”
Since the First Amendment does not apply to the social networks, they are free to remove content that violates their terms of service. I cannot defend every instance of what these media networks remove from their platforms. No doubt, there are legitimate complaints that some content was mistakenly taken down, but, as I understand it, there is an appeal process. BTW, calling for the elimination of Israel is an empty threat and you know it. It’s simply red meat to feed Khamenie’s worshippers not unlike Trump’s call to lock-up his Democratic opponents. Both should be condemned, but neither is taken seriously. Dan Bongino is a despicable human being, but I don’t hate him! I pity him.
There may be anti-trust solutions to the monopoly of these Tech behemoths. I don’t know that area of the law. I’m not opposed to that kind of regulation unlike Conservatives who are against virtually any governmental interference in the affairs of its citizens.
You said: “You applaud them” filtering out lies and conspiracy theories”. But the overarching problem is who decides what are lies and conspiracy theories.”
Those who own their networks decide who to broadcast. You think that Fox News does not limit the liberal voices in its programming? And Rightwing radio talk show hosts have their call screeners. Everyone discriminates against viewpoints with which they disagree. Just as it should be; otherwise, how do we justify ignoring Neo-Nazis who demand to be given a platform to argue that 6 million Jews was not enough? Must they be heard?
I have never watched “the View.” I don’t watch such “entertainment”. There are outlets for Conservatives on cable and the internet. Why is it that you seem to want the MSM to include more conservative programming? I’m not asking Fox News to hire liberals. I’m just arguing against what Fox is selling. Our news media is hopelessly partisan; we just have accept it and live with it. Gone are the days of ABC, NBC and CBS when none of the networks attacked one another in an effort to discredit each other. They did not even acknowledge one another. Now, it’s open warfare thanks to Fox, the South Carolina of our current media civil war. It fired the first shot.
I agree that Biden is feeble. His feebleness is as undeniable as Trump’s mendacity. I don’t know what the future holds for 2024. I doubt Biden will be able to run then. What chances have the Republicans in 2024 largely depends upon the fate of Trump. If he is indicted and convicted of some crime, that may allow Republicans finally to turn the page on Trumpism. Perhaps, Liz Cheney will lead a third party. A lot can transpire between now and then- all to the advantage of Democrats. I just hope that the Republicans are not held hostage by the Trumpists any longer. Trumpism will go down like McCarthyism as one of the darkest chapters in American history.
As for Oswald, I am well aware of all the facts that you have cited, and I do not disagree that they are facts. All of them are very suspicious to be sure, but regarding Ruby, it was shown that he went to the post office near the police station just a very few minutes before Oswald was paraded through the police basement. Had he been a hired mafia killer, he would have positioned himself in the basement long before Oswald appearing. It was a coincidence. There is a conspiracy theory to fabricate Kennedy conspiracy theories- MONEY selling books!
You say: “You can believe in a higher power, which the vast majority of the people do, and still apply reason and science to everyday problem solving. I don’t believe they are mutually exclusive.”
Fundamentally, they are. I don’t deny that scientists believe in a metaphorical god who “created” the laws of nature, or that religious people use reason to go about their lives. But there is no Judeo-Christian god as described biblically if you believe in science. That is just an immutable fact not unlike gender. People can hold two mutually exclusive beliefs in their minds, but that just means they are conflicted. My guess is that most scientists are atheists or agnostics and the majority of Trumpists are fundamentalist or evangelical. As far as climate change, is it 95+ percent of *climate* scientists, experts in their field, who subscribe to man-made global warming? Obviously, I know as much about climate science as I do about alchemy. But I see what is occurring around me, and since I trust scientists more than I do scientifically illiterate talking heads on Fox News, I’m going with the preponderance of science. That’s me- your mileage may vary!
You have a point about transgender men competing in women’s sports. I don’t follow all the nuances of that issue. Conservatives lost the culture war when same-sex marriage was declared Constitutional. This explains their affinity for Russia, for it is one of the last countries on earth where the State defends orthodox Christian values. Progressives and conservatives may argue around the cultural fringes, but there is no turning back the clock in America. Que sera sera.
You say you abhor hypocrisy as much as I, but you disagree that Turley is a hypocrite for working at Fox. Explain then how it is that Turley who passionately abhors what he calls “the age of rage” in our politics, but is gainfully employed by a network which contributes to that rage. Do I need to point you to specific articles in which Turley laments this “age of rage?” Must I argue the point that Fox News hosts call the MSM “fake news,” and “enemy of the people?” Do you watch Fox News prime time? One of these days, Turley- if he will ever submit to being questioned on the topic-will have no answer to reconcile his criticism of inflammatory rhetoric while partnering with Hannity, Carlson, Ingragam, Pirro, Bongino, Levin, etc. For this reason, he will not allow himself to be questioned on the matter by submitting to be interviewed by the MSM.
Regarding the defamation lawsuits, you don’t believe that Fox and the religious crackpot Lindell damaged the business reputations of Smartmartic and Dominion by their claims that the election machines were hacked or otherwise susceptible to tampering? You think these are nuisance suits? Seriously? I’m genuinely surprised that you think these plaintiffs are acting in bad faith but apparently not the defendants who have yet to substantiate their claim that there was massive fraud. They will have an opportunity to do so in a court of law where it counts as opposed to the court of public opinion where anything goes not unlike a World Wide Wrestling ring.
CRT is a theory. I am not disturbed that it may be taught in high school. I would applaud a teacher violating a state law prohibiting the teaching of CRT. You know about the Scope’s Monkey trial in which the great lawyer Clarence Darrow defended the teacher prosecuted for teaching “Evilution.” He lost at trial, but he won the war against such governmental censorship. I am a huge admirer of Darrow since he was the greatest advocate against the death penalty. So renowned was his oratory skills, that not one of his clients was ever put to death including the Trial of the Century, Leopold and Loeb.
I don’t really have any favorite college sports team. I just like good competition. I would not watch any sports if I had to sit through commercial breaks. I have DVR-ed everything for 25 years from satellite reception long before internet streaming. So I can watch a football game in half the time. I have gambled on blackjack a few times. I use the computer strategy so that I give the House as little edge as possible. I don’t count cards. As in love, the only way to win at gambling is to walk away when you are winning, and keep walking out the door!
Jeff, Thank you again for you response. I hope you enjoy our conversations as much as I do. My methodology is to try to respond on a point by point basis. Too many times in forums like these, legitimate questions go unanswered. Because in many cases the opposing viewpoint is indefensible. I am not accusing you of that. But if my replies are too arduous, I will cull the herd.
Are you using ” Retired ” as a pejorative? Yes I am retired since 2011. But I am trying to stay active. I have been somewhat slowed down by a spate of surgeries lately but I am rebounding.
I agree that the social media companies are not bound by the 1st Amendment. And are free to make their own rules.
As you know the social media guys Zuckerberg, Dorsey etc. have testified before Congress many times. With their desire to keep their 230 protection intact being their greatest concern. Their consistent advocation for keeping 230 is that their platforms give the public a space for education and allow for the free and fair exchange of ideas. And if 230 would be rescinded they would be sued out of existence. How can it be a free and fair exchange of ideas when one group is consistently being silenced while the other is not? We know that even the suggestion that the virus came from the Wuhan lab was censored.
My concern is that social media has an unprecedented amount of power to shape public opinion. And they don’t shape it anywhere near being fair.
I know this sounds like sour grapes but it is not.
If someone wants to sat the virus came from the lab, and even insinuate it was done on purpose which would seem ridiculous, COUNTERPOINT! not censor.
If someone wants to say aliens built the pyramids, which would seem ridiculous, COUNTERPOINT!, not censor.
If Trump wants to say the election was stolen, which would seem ridiculous, COUNTERPOINT! not censor.
If someone wants to say that the riots last year were the work of white supremacists, which would seem ridiculous, ………. WAIT. That was said and not censored. Using my I only want to state something as fact, like seeing it with my own eyes standard, unless the vast majority of the people looting who were black were actually white supremacists, then the previously stated supposition is demonstrably false. and by their own rules was “:disinformation” and should have been taken down and the authors barred. This ” disinformation” canard is the new tool of the weak minded who don’t have the mental capacity to produce a cogent counter narrative.
You said ” Khamenie’s calling for the elimination of Israel is an empty threat and you know it” . Do you doubt that is his wish? ” From the river to the sea” means something right? I used that example for the purposes of discussion involving the power of social media and how it’s rules are meted out unfairly. It was not to debate the viability of the destruction of the State of Israel. If I stated that I was going to kill everyone by myself with a hand gun at the next Cub game that would certainly be seen as a threat on Facebook or Twitter and would not be posted and I would be banned. Even though what I threatened would be impossible. Now it is plain to see that you don’t like Bongino. But to my knowledge he has never called for the destruction of any state. Which would certainly involve the loss of human life .And he was banned. To use a term I have come to strongly dislike, this is equitable?
You are correct, networks do control who appears on the channel . That is how they appeal to their audience. But my point is that as with social media the deck is stacked. We already discussed the Left/ Right makeup of cable. Just for the sake of argument let’s say it is even. Everyone cannot afford cable. So that leaves the 3 major networks and I am going to include PBS. Which btw I resent one penny of my tax money going to support that entity. Yamiche Alcindor is the worst excuse for a ” journalist” that I have ever seen. Unbelievably biased. It absolutely galls me that my tax dollars help pay this person’s salary. ( More on” journalism “later.) I recently spent time on vacation and we stayed with my wife’s relatives. So I obviously did not have control of the remote. So I was subjected to David Muir of ABC on a nightly basis. If this is typical of the major network’s nightly news, WOW!! What a hack. The days of Chronkite , Huntley Brinkley and Reynolds are long gone.
And this I am sure will not be popular. I grew up in Chicago, as I have told you. I vividly remember the Nazi march through Skokie. Which at the time had the 2nd most Holocaust survivors in the world. I think Warsaw had more. And I remember that the ACLU represented the Nazi’s. That was before they got
” woke”. The march was discussed at home and in school. But to answer your question, and I know this is unseemly, the neo Nazi’s should not be prevented from spewing their vile hatred. Unless they use the platform to organize or incite violence to me it is free speech and should not be censured on any platform.
Again I don’t think there is any such thing as hate speech. Hate crimes, yes.
On Fox firing the 1st shot, it was not the 1st shot, it was the ONLY shot coming from the opposite direction.
You say, ” A lot can transpire between now and then- all to the advantage of the Democrats” Let’s explore that. You agree we have a mentally compromised guy in the White House. Who will continue to decline and would be 81 if reelected. The V.P. who also ran for President was so unpopular she dropped out of the race before Marianne Williamson and before a single primary vote was casted .And her profile has descended since. You have inflation rising precipitously which effects the common everyday voter in a negative way. The Southern border is a joke with quadruple the amount of ” kids in cages” than under Trump .With no end in sight. Russia will continue it’s cyber attacks because they have no fear of retribution.
Violent crime is out of control and almost nobody is buying the narrative that it the fault of an inanimate object ( gun) rather than the criminal who actually pulls the trigger. The Dems have the smallest majority in the House ( which I think they will lose in the mid terms) and a 50- 50 split in the Senate and have been unable to get any meaningful legislation through.( And on a side note if they kill the filibuster they will regret it.) Just to name a few.
On the other side you have the continuing demonization of a guy who has no power at all .And by extension, Jan. 6th.
Needless to say I disagree. And not to harp, but if we had anything close to a non complicit press Democrats would have no shot.
On journalism, Medill School of Journalism, here at Northwestern, one of the most prodigious journalism schools in the country, is now teaching it’s students
NOT TO BE OBJECTIVE. This is terrifying . They are being taught to incorporate their ” own social justice viewpoints” into their reporting.
Lester Holt recently said that, and this is not verbatim, that when the point of the story is obvious there is no requirement to show the other side. Who decides if the point is obvious?
Climate change. I would just like to see one prediction come true. I believe that we should be good conservators of our planet. But what is suggested by the AOC’s of the world is fear mongering and just not true.
Next point, whatever will be will be.
We have a different take on Fox. You may have noticed except in a very limited fashion I have avoided the Jan 6 th topic. Not because I am afraid to, it is just that the back and forth would be take time, research which I have not done, and contemplation. I know you blame Fox for this event, at least partially, and the rest, like everything else on Trump.
I will certainly discuss this later, and in our next correspondence if you wish. But no, I don’t think it was worse than the Civil War or 9/11.
Turley’s ” Age of rage” articles do exist. But again from my limited viewing , what appears on Fox is no more confrontational than the ” opposing networks”.
And I know I am beating a dead horse here, given media as a whole, just by volume, those expressing conservative viewpoints are at a decided disadvantage. He presents views that probably align with his principles. And I think he comments on how the law applies correctly. That is the reason he is a contributor. Not as a partisan. Not to do that would be hypocritical.
On the lawsuits, we shall see.
On CRT. I guess without a clear definition that we agree on further debate will be futile. Maybe we can try later? You say you have no problem with it being taught in High Schools. Can I infer from that that you would agree with me that it would be inappropriate for that theory to be taught in grade schools? And please don’t fall for the new tactic of obfuscation that preventing the teaching of CRT prevents the teaching of legitimate history. That includes such things as slavery, JimCrow, racism etc. in the curriculum. I do have a problem in this day and age with people deciding which laws to obey. As you stated, Darrow lost the trial . As he should have . But that prompted the solution. A Legislative change. That is the way it works. The fact that sometimes the legislative process doesn’t work fast enough for some people does not mean they get to ignore the law. I believe there is a word for that. Anarchy You have stated that you do not know all of the components of CRT. And to my knowledge you have not proffered one. How can you applaud someone breaking a law when you don’t even know what the law is prohibiting?
Inherit the Wind is one of my favorite movies of all time.
Thanks again. My dinner offer still holds. I don’t know where you live but if I am as good at picking football games as I was last year, your plane ticket is on me also.
I meant no slight about supposing you were retired; just that you have more time on your hands to reply to me than I to you.
You said: “If someone wants to say aliens built the pyramids, which would seem ridiculous, COUNTERPOINT!, not censor. If Trump wants to say the election was stolen, which would seem ridiculous, COUNTERPOINT!”
The first assertion is false though harmless, thus no removal. The second lie is harmful to our faith in the integrity of our democracy; I would remove it. Not censor by government; but removal from a privately owned platform. You may choose to keep it up, but I myself would have no qualms removing it. This is simply “discrimination” against demonstrable falsehoods which are harmful to our nation or a group of people. I put Trump’s Big Lie in the same category as an anti-Semite who says that 6 million Jews were not enough. I know you don’t agree with my equating the two. We will disagree on the facts, but discriminating against falsehood is not censorship by government- it is simply ignoring and refusing to amplify patent lies and hate speech which we should all do if we desire a civil society.
Khamenie’s hollow threat to wipe Israel off the map is no different than Trump’ threat that Mexico will pay for his wall. Just red meat thrown to satiate the appetite of their respective followers. Empty threats which reveal that both men are demagogues. At least Khamenei is true to his fundamentalist Islamic beliefs; Trump is a conman who will say whatever is needed to sway his mark.
I don’t know why Bongino was banned on the social platforms. I’m not at all surprised given his statements which I have witnessed on Fox News. He is a reprehensible human being, but I don’t hate him. I hate the sin; not the sinner.
You have a point resenting your taxes funding PBS just as I resent my taxes funding a trillion dollar nuclear arsenal of thousands of warheads which will cost billions to maintain none of which will ever be used until they are decommissioned which will cost more billions! What a waste of money. PBS is peanuts.
As it happens, I watch David Muir nightly. I don’t find that he slants the news. Nowadays, nightly news is largely worthless anyway since the stories are skin deep and too short. And there is a healthy dose of feel good stories which are unnecessary. I don’t believe the networks must give equal time to both sides of a story when one side is false. Typically, there are two sides to a story, but not always. There are not two sides to global warming. I don’t listen to AOC on climate change, I listen to the scientists. Again the vast majority of climate scientists say it is happening by virtue of man’s burning fossil fuel. If that is not good enough for you, there is nothing I can say. I just hope you live long enough to witness the point of no return when there is a runaway greenhouse effect, so I’ll have the satisfaction of telling you, “I told you so!”
The government should not ban a Neo-Nazi march. You misunderstood me if you think I would approve of such a ban. BUT I would not broadcast any part of that march on the news networks. Why? For the same reason TV networks don’t show drunks who run onto the field during televised sporting events to make a spectacle of themselves. Such antics and such hate should be ignored and not encouraged.
I believe that hateful speech exists though I don’t see the need for hate crimes per se. The hatefulness of the defendant’s crime can be weighed by the judge at sentencing.
You said, “On the other side you have the continuing demonization of a guy who has no power at all.”
Whatever discredit Trump suffers now and later, he brought upon himself by his lies. He has no legal power, but his power is still wielded over the Republican Party. The Republican establishment wanted him defeated from day 1- they all knew he was a joke- but they underestimated his shamelessness to lie through his teeth. No one thought he would win, but he just squeaked it out. By then the Republicans realized that they had created a Frankenstein, and they were powerless to do anything about it. But they want him gone, but none except Cheney and a few others are brave enough to risk their careers. If and when Trump is prosecuted and convicted of a crime, very few Republicans will shed a tear. They will be very relieved in private. Trumpism has to be defeated, and it will be defeated just like McCarthyism was eventually disgraced.
You said, “But no, I don’t think it was worse than the Civil War or 9/11.”
I NEVER said 1/6 was anywhere near as bad as the Civil War or 9/11. I completely reject that comparison. I even call Leftists liars who claim that 5 people were killed on 1/6. On the other hand, I don’t defend Babbitt as a hero like the Trumpists. I would not call 1/6 an “insurrection” as such. To me, it was a riot by a bunch of gullible hotheads; on the other hand, I would not say that there were “no weapons” like the Trumpists. The rioters used whatever they had in hand AS weapons. There are false narratives on both sides. However, THE BOTTOM LINE IS, but for Trump’s lies and Fox’s broadcasting those lies for months, this riot would NOT have occurred. Period. Full stop.
I don’t accuse Turley of misstating facts or engaging in Giuliani style lying on Fox News. I resent the fact Turley would want to prostitute himself by working for a network that would broadcast talk show hosts which would promote liars such as Giuliani, Powell, etc. Just like Turley by his own admission would not be caught dead in the Infowars’ Green Room, he should avoid Fox. I know you disagree, but that is my opinion after having studied Fox for years. You do realize that one of Murdoch’s own son also thinks that Fox is deleterious. After the patriarch dies, maybe the other son will come around and change Fox’s course.
Fundamentally, you and I see the world very differently. And our differences are irreconcilable. They’ve been baked in over many years. We are a House Divided, irrevocably. We will just have to learn to live side by side without driving each other crazy like the old sitcom, “The Odd Couple.”
So this post by Jeff is a masterpiece. Full stop. A healthy slice of sanity in a rather insane world.
The only place where I’d step on the gas pedal against establishment Republicans even more would be when Jeff says: “The Republican establishment wanted him defeated from day 1- they all knew he was a joke- but they underestimated his shamelessness to lie through his teeth. No one thought he would win, but he just squeaked it out. By then the Republicans realized that they had created a Frankenstein, and they were powerless to do anything about it. ”
I’d say they realized they’d created a monster, and then a surprisingly large number of them rubbed their palms together all Dr. Evil style, realized they had a near perfect Trojan horse to looting the government through a vehicle of a clueless, yet reliably corrupt con man, and then set about looting the government like they just hit the jackpot on your favorite absurd bell ringing, lights flashing slot machine.
I’d also step up the categorization of those who participated violently in 1/6 to ‘treasonous, Capitol rioting MAGAT status’. And if a true parallel between 9/11 and 1/6 were drawn, the worst of them (by previously established U.S. response policy, NOT by standards of morality or effectiveness) should’ve found their snarling butts in Gitmo.
All in all though, an awesome post to start the day with. I might just have to go with that before heading out into a rather busy day of varied work tasks.
It is utterly IMMATERIAL that an agent hates or loves the subject of an investigation
But the FBI NEVER had a reason to investigate. I will remind those that aren’t well informed. Crossfire Hurricane and other investigations, were NEVER criminal investigations. They were counter Intell, to avoid the legal requirements concerning spying. Other than the desire to keep President Trump from being elected. And then to fabricate a smear to remove him from office. The FBI and the DoJ are political agencies.
By Turley’s logic, we should not enforce laws against speeding because half the drivers in American would be given tickets.
You are the worst at analogies.
Turleyt never said dont enforce speeding. What he said was if a cop is arresting, and DA”s prosecuting speeders, its an abuse of citizens.
Labeling the reciept of money as non taxable income is almost an art form. There is an entire section of lawyering devoted to the practice. The IRS almost always enforces abuses in civil court. Fines as penalties and paying of required tax.
Not arresting the CFO and putting them in leg irons and seeking jail time. That is prosacutorial abuse
Please, eb, help me out here.
“By Turley’s logic, we should not enforce laws against speeding because half the drivers in American would be given tickets.”
And Iowan2 replied:
“Turleyt never said dont enforce speeding. What he said was if a cop is arresting, and DA”s prosecuting speeders, its an abuse of citizens.”
Is his statement intelligible because I cannot make sense of it. One of us is losing his marbles-
“Please, eb, help me out here.”
“One of us is losing his marbles-“
eb never had any marbles and your marbles are very tiny.
Jeff. this is not about enforcement. Its about selective, punitive, prosecution.
Tax code is ambiguous. If you disagree Call up an IRS office and ask about a specific section of the code. They might tell you what it means, but 100% of the time they will NOT submit that explanation in writing and sign it.
If benefits were not included as taxable income, 99% of the time, the IRS calls you in for an audit. If the find you underpaid, they will fine your and you will pay the tax due. Its is all a civil action.
They do no put CFO’s in restraints and charge them in criminal court.
Just like a speeding ticket is a civil court, not criminal court matter.
You hurt my feelings when you said of me: “emotionally stunted whimpering of ignorant leftists like yourself.”
Take it back and apologize; otherwise, I will no longer play in the sandbox with you.
I wonder if Jeff understands that playing in the sandbox with him is not desirable for anyone. Jeff doesn’t talk to me either because I demanded Jeff provide proof, but he preferred to act like Anonymous the Stupid and reject proof while continuing his libel. I am happy Jeff doesn’t respond to me, because then I can make my comments and don’t have to deal with a reply. I get enough Stupidity from ATS.
Your comment about Jeff, ““emotionally stunted whimpering of ignorant leftists like yourself.” was totally accurate. Jeff likes to dish it out (to Turley) but can’t take it.
Stop whimpering about Turley writing about what he wants, instead of what you demand. Its a one note song, that was never bearable. Repeating
ad nauseam is worse.
If Turley had the the mute function like the Volokh Conspiracy I would never see your one note samba.
I see you gave up debating the facts. Wise decision.
Iowan2 says: “Stop whimpering about Turley writing about what he wants, instead of what you demand. Its a one note song, that was never bearable. Repeating ad nauseam is worse.
If Turley had the the mute function like the Volokh Conspiracy I would never see your one note samba. I see you gave up debating the facts. Wise decision.”
Turley will not mute me because I am civil unlike you. Nor will he ever cancel me because Turley is a self-described free speech originalist. If you don’t wish to read my posts, I suggest you skip over them as I do many who post on this blog. I debate facts with people who are civil, e.g., Paul and KarenS.
Will justice will devolve into budget considerations like the final scene in THX 1138?
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