Saturday, July 9, 2016

On Tyranny's Doorstep

Over the past couple weeks, I've been working on three blog posts for various amounts of time but haven't gotten any of them done, partly because a number of bad things have happened in my life and their spillover effect has crowded out my writing time.

I don't say that for sympathy, seeing as how I am wonderfully wed and obviously alive. Rather, I say it to emphasize that I am forcing myself to complete this post because I believe its topic -- the FBI decision not to recommend prosecution of Tsarina Hillary Rodham Clinton -- is too important to be mute about.

To be clear: I never thought She would be prosecuted, because I always believed the U.S. Department of (In)Justice would choose to protect Her. After all, protecting the powerful and making no rules for them while planting a minefield of draconian measures for everyone else establishing one set of rules for them while establishing another set for everyone else is what the DO(I)J does these days.

Still, I never expected to witness a spectacle quite like FBI Director James Comey's press conference last Tuesday, in which he insulted the intelligence of every knowledgeable and thinking person in America. The more I think about him ignoring/denying the obvious and trying to pass balderdash off as logic, the more convinced I am that he is somehow weirdly related to Monty Python's Black Knight.

For those who don't know, the FBI does not have any power to bring charges or engage in criminal prosecution. It is a purely investigative arm of federal law enforcement, and based on what it finds in an investigation, it can do one of three things: recommend prosecution, recommend not to prosecute, or simply say nothing. It is always up to the DO(I)J to decide whether or not to prosecute, and it is not uncommon for the the DO(I)J's decision to be out of step with the FBI's recommendation.

Comey's long-established reputation is that of a non-partisan stickler who follows the evidence wherever it leads and makes no attempt to shield wrongdoers from the consequences of their wrongdoing, regardless of their station in life or political affiliation. And the evidence we know his bureau unearthed against Tsarina Hillary is overwhelming, undeniable, and of such a nature that it cannot be mitigated by circumstances.

Due to that combination of sterling reputation and ironclad evidence, many people had been speculating that whenever the DO(I)J would announce its decision to not hold Tsarina Hillary accountable to the same laws as everyone else, Comey would uphold his principles by resigning in protest.

But no. Instead, he spent almost 15 minutes meticulously detailing how the evidence clearly shows She broke vital laws relating to the handling of classified information and national security data, and how She put the nation's security at enormous risk -- only to turn around and say, at the very end of his remarks, that he was recommending against criminal prosecution.

His lone attempt to justify his decision would be laughable if it wasn't so risible. He said it was because Tsarina Hillary "did not intend to harm the United States." Well slap my ass and call me Sally, but even my 11-year-old can figure out that intent is irrelevant when the law is concerning "gross negligence." If you don't want to give credence to the legal/linguistic analysis of me and my 11-year-old, maybe you'll reconsider after reading this  analysis by Andy McCarthy, who happens to be a prosecutor of such accomplishment that he put "the blind shiekh" behind bars for masterminding the 1993 World Trade Center bombing

I was in sixth grade when my Social Studies teacher, Mr. John Thomas, explained that "ignorance of the law is no excuse" when it comes time to sanction you for breaking it.

In fatal car crashes, very few at-fault drivers intend even for the crash to occur, much less for anyone to die, yet they still get charged with vehicular homicide.

I was 9 or 10 years old when I realized -- based basically on possessing a functioning brain and having watched a couple spy movies -- that gross negligence in the handling of classified information and national security data is so execrable that it deserves severe punishment.

Yet now, the head honcho of the FBI has stamped his seal of approval on the tyrant's notion that all that stuff applies only to the little guy, not the big guy; and the most maddening thing about his mad hatter's attempt to rationalize his seal of approval is that it was, well, mad (as in nutty, not as in angry). Even if intent was relevant in Tsarina Hillary's case, why define it so narrowly? She did not intend to harm the country but She clearly intended to 1) use a private server that was less secure than Gmail, 2) elude Freedom of Information Act requests, and 3) conceal even Her non-classified government communications from the public eye -- all in violation of the law. Plus, Her actions bear every mark of pre facto obstruction of justice. 

You or I would be behind bars for doing what Tsarina Hillary did, yet She has just been given a legalistic peck on the cheek. And if She -- who, lest we forget, orchestrated the firing of White House travel office employees without cause, and provided legal defense to a man She believed to be guilty of raping a child, and actively sought to slander the reputations and destroy the lives of women who were sexually harrassed by Her husband -- ends up in the Oval Office, then She will be effectively in charge of the DO(I)J, IRS, BATF, FBI, CIA, and every other monstrous alphabet soup bureaucracy that is able to assault our livelihoods with powers of audit and regulation and subpoena and imprisonment. What do you think the odds are that She won't use that vast power to abuse people She perceives as "the Other"?

Again, I always knew believed She would not be charged, for the simple reason that I know believe that the DO(I)J is corrupt. But I thought hoped, for good reason, that James Comey would live up to his reputation and protect the FBI's. I thought hoped, for good reason, that he would not allow his or his bureau's imprimatur to appear on any decision to not hold Tsarina Hillary accountable for Her unlawful gross negligence.

That Comey wound up debasing himself leads to many conclusions speculations. Most of them fall under the headings "he sold out" or "he bowed to pressure," and I suspect there is some truth to most of those conclusions speculations.

But the main thought that reverberates in my brain (and I am shocked that I haven't heard anyone else express it) is that the most likely reason Comey betrayed his principles is that the evidence regarding Tsarina Hillary also implicates many other key players in both the executive and legislative branches of our national government -- and neither they nor Comey want that to come out.

Think about it. This all stems from Her never using a government email address to conduct government business. Knowledge of Her using private servers (there were more than one) is all downstream from Her using a personal email account.

Every person who ever corresponded with Her electronically when She was Secretary of State had to notice that her email address ended not in "" but in "," yet She kept right on doing it all the way through Her tenure without anybody making an issue of it, which means that means that many powerful people -- from both parties, and mutiple parts of the federal government, probably including the president himself -- were complicit in Her unlawful gross negligence.

Think of our government, especially the executive branch, as a building. Recommending prosecution of Tsarina Hillary for this particular crime, even if the recommendation was not followed by the DO(I)J, would have triggered cracks that spread across the foundation and up the walls. It would have weakened the building and eroded already weak public trust.

Because recommending prosecution should might have forced the Democratic Party to deny its presidential nomination to a candidate who had already won that nomination according to the party's rules, it would have opened the FBI up to accusations of interfering with "the people's decision" about who should be in charge of the executive branch... In turn, those accusations would have opened the FBI up to accusations of acting totalitarian and pushing America toward a police state... And although those accusations would have been false and unfair, they nonetheless would have been made loudly and repeatedly and with enough logic that they would have stuck, thereby weakening the "building" even more.

James Comey was in a horrible position. No matter which path he chose, it was sure to lead to some sort of upheaval, and I don't think he liked any of his options.

I do believe he honestly thought that he made the choice which would cause the least amount of damage to whatever passes for our domestic stability these days... but I believe he was monumentally and perhaps catastrophically wrong.

We were already on a slippery slope to tyranny before last Tuesday, and Comey's choice did nothing but make the slope even less viscous.

By laying out a perfect case for prosecution and then saying he didn't recommend prosecution, he showed that our so-called leaders don't even need to pretend like the law applies to them, nor do they even need to pretend to take our national security seriously -- never mind that safeguarding national security is 90 percent of the reason we even have a federal government.

And by then trying to justify nonsense by peddling naked lies (such as "no reasonable prosecutor" would take the case, there has been "only one" such prosecution in 99 years, etc.) Comey lowered the FBI to the level of the KGB.

Thanks to Comey, there is no reason for any American citizen to be loyal to the government of the United States, since he has set a precedent by which that government can be (and is) openly and unaccountably disloyal to we who supposedly employ it.

The primary fault for all of this lies with Clinton & Co., not Comey -- but Comey chose not to take a stand when he had the chance, and history will judge him horribly for being derelict in his duty.

We expect Clinton to lie and abuse Her authority, for a tsarina is what She is... We expect Her sycophants to be sycophantic, for sycophants are what they are... But we did not expect Comey & Co., and by extension the FBI, to set things up in such a way that Clinton & Co. are deemed less guilty of law-breaking than a single mom who drives five miles per hour over the posted speed limit.

Comey has bred contempt for the law, and for as long as he remains on the people's payroll, the law will deserve every red hot ounce of contempt it receives.

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