Editorials: Played for fools down here; and Investigations up there


¿Somos pendejos?


Investigations right and left

Actually, in the USA the left is in “wait and see” mode about the sundry special prosecutor and congressional investigations pertaining to the 2016 elections and tangents spinning off of that subject. The neocon element that came back into the Democratic Party to support Hillary Clinton — they were almost all Republicans back in the days of George W. Bush — like the idea of a next Cold War with Russia and may be hanging their hopes on political ammunition to justify such a thing. The left half of the Democratic Party dislikes wars, cold or hot, and thinks that adding another major one just accelerates a national drag race toward bankruptcy. This is not to say that antiwar Dems like or trust Putin, but the general sense of the left is that rivalries with nuclear-armed powers should be calmed and managed rather than escalated.

We have long known that key members of the Trump entourage, including members of his family, lied to the FBI and to Congress about their Russian ties. Those are crimes and easily proven, but in these times of intense polarization, can a jury of a dozen Americans that would unanimously convict be found? Prosecutors must routinely consider those sorts of factors. In its reverse it’s one of the most persistent weaknesses of American justice — opportunist prosecutors playing off of public prejudices and enhancing them in jury selection, so as to get panels that will unanimously convict people who can’t be proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. But whatever state or federal charges that Mr. Mueller and some states’ attorneys general who are apparently working with him decide to bring, there will be a report and what it says may be far more decisive in the court of public opinion than anything that may subsequently happen in a court of law.

The Republicans in Congress, well knowing all of this, are feverishly mounting a counter-attack. Hillary Clinton paid for a former British intelligence officer’s work on a celebrated dossier! How about THAT? That the campaign paid for at least some of this investigative work has been known for a long time. It’s a fact that’s relevant to any consideration of the dossier’s credibility. But surely Mueller will not rely on that set of documents for any of his case, even if he may have used it as a road map for some of the places that his probe had to go. It would be fun to watch politicians who have made careers of denouncing the exclusionary rule for unlawfully obtained evidence complain about “the fruit of a poisoned tree.” The measure of the questioned dossier is not whether it was partisan opposition research but whether its findings were true and independently provable.

Was there a Democratic lobbyist who also failed to reveal that he was a foreign agent? Probably. It’s reasonable to expect Mueller to charge him if he charges any Republicans with similar things.

Did the Obama administration make decisions that Republicans didn’t like? And… BENGHAZI! And what about the gay Nazi death squad that acted in conjunction with the flaming liberal Las Vegas gunman and were allowed to escape by the Mexican hotel security guy? If Pastor Rick Wiles said it, if Alex Jones said it, if it was in Breitbart, that means it MUST be truthy, doesn’t it? Yes, Republicans in Congress will tell us with such stuff, and perhaps up to one-third of the American people will believe it.

The entire Trump administration and its acolytes on Capitol Hill are a pack of lies and will continue to be. George W. Bush led America to a ruinous foreign war for a lie. Will Donald Trump lead the country to a constitutional crisis and perhaps to an even more disastrous civil war for an incautiously woven fabric of lies? Only if people let him do it.


Bear in mind…

When opinions are free, either in matter of government or religion, truth will finally and powerfully prevail.
Thomas Paine


Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of The Lord
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored
He has loosed the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword
His truth is marching on
Julia Ward Howe


Time is on the side of the oppressed today, it’s against the oppressor. Truth is on the side of the oppressed today, it’s against the oppressor. You don’t need anything else.
Malcolm X


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