We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, January 6. 2018
Chance Blackbeard Discovery Reveals Pirate Reading Habits
The other Queen mother: She spent two years in an asylum, then became a nun. A new documentary explores the unconventional life of the Queen’s mother-in-law, Princess Alice
Blockchain technology behind bitcoin is worth it
Canadians Shocked When Minimum Wage Hike Negatively Impacts Workers
Al Gore: ‘Bitter cold’ is ‘exactly what we should expect from the climate crisis’
Met Museum changes 50 year-old policy: Non-New Yorkers must pay
I'm going there today. NY in winter is almost as much fun as NY in summer.
Is the hunt for bad men looking like the inquisition?
Support for Anti-Israel BDS Movement 'Virtually Nonexistent' Among College Students
Muslims to become second-largest religious group in US, says report - The Muslim population in the US is growing at a rate of around 100,000 per year
A Libertarian Quandary on Pot, Federalism, and the Rule of Law
Follow the UK Model for Entitlement Reform
Makes some sense. Almost everybody can do something useful. As I said before, we have a Down's gal bagging at my grocery 8 hrs/day, every day. A cheerful presence who clearly loves feeling useful.
What should we do with the people whose work is unwanted or unneeded?
On the other hand, Filling America's 6 Million Job Vacancies
ONE MILLION Americans (and counting) will receive tax reform bonuses
Senior Hillary Adviser Tells Students He’s Nervous They Will Like The Tax Cuts And Vote Republican
African-American unemployment hits lowest rate in history
Co-head of the DNC. That tells you something.
Persecutors or prosecutors? Cliven Bundy-FBI debacle: Another example of why the feds need to be leashed
The author of the explosive new Trump book says he can't be sure if parts of it are true
The Wolff Book Proves It: Our Journalists Stink
Yes it does. Nevertheless, Trump sells! He might even help rescue the news business by being so colorful and outspoken.
Trump boasts that he’s ‘like, really smart’ and a ‘very stable genius’ amid questions over his mental fitness
FBI Knew The ‘Bleach Bit’ Computer Guy Lied In Clinton Email Testimony, Gave Him Immunity
Just how political is the FBI?
Now We Know: FBI Ignored Lawbreaking To Exonerate Hillary Clinton
Israel Is Offering Illegal Immigrants $3,500 And A Plane Ticket To Leave
Middle East's dull response to US's Jerusalem decision shouldn't come as a surprise
Finland at 100—Frozen by Fear, Dragged to a Multicultural Grave
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"Muslims to become second-largest religious group in US, says report - The Muslim population in the US is growing at a rate of around 100,000 per year"
It would be more interesting to know how that Muslim population actually breaks down for it will be no more homogenous than the Christian or Jewish population, divided as it is into the two key groups of Sunnis and Shi'ites.
Then there are a myriad of varying offshoot sects of both.
Furthermore, different Muslim ethnicities add even more variation into the mix: Arabs, Iranians, Pakistanis, Bosnians, Malaysians, Africans.
Re: Now We Know: FBI Ignored Lawbreaking To Exonerate Hillary Clinton
When law enforcement becomes an arm of a political party, it's called a police state.
That was the whole idea!
Now We Know: FBI Ignored Lawbreaking To Exonerate Hillary Clinton ... The language here is important because "gross negligence" — even absent any intent — is a violation of the law regarding handling of classified material.
That is incorrect. "The elements of scienter and bad faith" are required. See Gorin vs. United States, which found that for the Espionage Act to withstand constitutional muster, the trial court would have to show that the defendant had intended for their conduct to benefit a foreign power.
The evidence is continuing to be uncovered.
(Gorin v. U.S. is irrelevant to this case.)
Stay tuned, kiddiez!
No it doesn't Zach, that case dealt with other sections of the Espionage Act. Gross negligence is enough for Hillary's crimes. 18 U.S.C. sec. 793(f). That's why Hillary's allies in the FBI scrubbed that out of the report. And that's obstruction of justice.
Gorin dealt with Sections 793(a) and (b), which require intent. You're mis-citing the case.
I did look into Gorin vs. United States. According to Wikipedia, One of the defense's arguments was (and the only one that was listed that might appear to buttress your case):
The "innocuous" nature of the documents meant there was no intent to harm the US or to aid a foreign nation.
The Supreme Court rejected that argument as well as all the other defense arguments.
But even if Gorin was decided in Gorin's favor, Clinton, who claimed (and indeed is required) to know how to handle classified information, knowing allowed people without security clearances to have access to such information.
You'll have to try again.
zach, you are a slow learner, or are just reposting the leftist stock defense of crooked russian-bribed hillary.
The Gorin v. US case, finding ghe defendant guilty, does not require "scienter" for gross negligence criminality. Also, hillary had "scienter", in fact knowing full well that she set up a non-approved server. She KNEW (scienter) she was sending and receiving email on a private server. She did this to keep her work (and stte-department payoffs) l from being a public record, in violation of the criminal law.
Jim: that case dealt with other sections of the Espionage Act.
No. The constitutional problem is that the meaning of “relating to the national defense” is vague and that the defendant would have had no way to know whether or not a given act was illegal. The Supreme Court found that term is sufficiently specific as long as there is evidence of "the elements of scienter and bad faith".
Jim: Gorin dealt with Sections 793(a) and (b), which require intent.
As Gorin dealt with the definition of “relating to the national defense”, it clearly applies to §793(f)
mudbug: The Supreme Court rejected that argument as well as all the other defense arguments.
That's right. Gorin was convicted because there was a jury finding that the material was "relating to the national defense" and a finding of "the elements of scienter and bad faith".
mudbug: Clinton, who claimed (and indeed is required) to know how to handle classified information, knowing allowed people without security clearances to have access to such information.
The email channel, whether state.gov or clintonemail.com, was to be used only for non-classified information, and the vast majority of the material was non-classified.
jaybird: She KNEW (scienter) she was sending and receiving email on a private server.
As the information was not marked classified, and she regularly used secure channels for other classified material, it's clear she did not intend to give foreign powers information "relating to the national defense".
jaybird: She did this to keep her work (and stte-department payoffs) l from being a public record, in violation of the criminal law.
That would be a different statute. There's no public evidence that she took payoffs. The Clinton Foundation has open records, as do the Clintons personally. However, there is an open investigation.
Gorin v. U.S. is irrelevant to the case at hand.
Further revelations of evidence withheld until recently by the FBI and DOJ are now being revealed.
Sorry kiddiez, y'all really do need to keep up.
Z: That's right. Gorin was convicted because there was a jury finding that the material was "relating to the national defense" and a finding of "the elements of scienter and bad faith".
Further investigation indicates to me that Gorin does not relate to part (f) since that pertains to actual information. Instead it relates to part (a) and (b), as jim states above, since it pertains to gathering defense information. The information found in Gorin was a note related to gathering information rather than classified information itself. I found other references that also claim that part (a) and (b) are the pertinent sections of the law for Gorin. Both parts (a) and (b) specify that "intent or reason to believe" the information would be sensitive is required.
Part (f) concerns those who are entrusted with classified information. There is no mention of intent, therefore, intent is not necessary to fall afoul of it. This part says that someone entrusted with sensitive information is negligent in its handling when he...
...permits the same (sensitive information) to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust
You aren't arguing that a private, secret email server is the "proper place" for sensitive information, that allowing people without proper security clearances to have access to sensitive information, or mailing sensitive information through regular mail is not grossly negligent (even Comey's considered it grossly negligent).
What Hillary and her minions did was several orders of magnitude worse than what Kristian Saucier was charged with that ended in his spending a year in jail, ended his career in the Navy and any future veterans benefits, although he similarly tried to destroy evidence (according to an article be The Hill). One might remember that destruction of evidence and lying can be legal acknowledgement of wrong doing.
Z: The email channel, whether state.gov or clintonemail.com, was to be used only for non-classified information, and the vast majority of the material was non-classified.
And yet, according to the Inspector General for the intelligence agencies, there was top secret information information on Hillary's server. The fact that most of it was not sensitive is irrelevant.
mudbug: Further investigation indicates to me that Gorin does not relate to part (f) since that pertains to actual information.
While the case concerned (a) and (b), as the court ruled on the meaning of “relating to the national defense”, it applies to (f) as well.
mudbug: Part (f) concerns those who are entrusted with classified information.
But that still requires a jury finding concerning whether the information was “relating to the national defense”, and Gorin determined that for the defendant to know beforehand whether a given act was illegal requires evidence of "the elements of scienter and bad faith" — otherwise they would have struck down the entire law as unconstitutional!
mudbug: Kristian Saucier
Saucier knew the information was "relating to the national defense" and his actions had "the elements of scienter and bad faith". Clinton testified that she was not aware that classified information was being transmitted by email. She used secure channels for the vast majority of classified discussions, and there is no evidence she intended to put classified information at risk.
That's the case law, and how the law has been historically applied. As Comey testified, prosecuting Clinton "would be treating somebody differently because of their celebrity status or because of some other factor that doesn't matter. We have to treat people, the bedrock of our system of justice, we have to treat people fairly. We treat them the same based on their conduct."
Once again the kiddiez do not know what they are talking about.
First, there is no requirement to prove an intent to harm the United States. The statute calls only for an awareness that the information could be used to hurt the U.S. or benefit a foreign nation. To be guilty, the official does not need to want that to happen; she must merely be aware that it could happen.
Second, you may be saying to yourself: “But ‘intent to harm the United States’ is significant, so it should be part of a classified-information offense.” That’s right, and that’s why it is a part of a classified-information offense — it just happens not to be the offense we’re talking about in Mrs. Clinton’s case.
Of course part (f) relates to national defense. Most of part (f) is a list of the types of information that needs particular attention to how it is handled. As I stated, parts (a) and (b) explicitly state that intent needs to be determined. Part (f) does not mention intent and is therefore irrelevant.
(Copy and paste on an iPad is cumbersome so I'll paraphrase)
Previously, I stated that part (f) relates to those entrusted with sensitive information and since Gorin was not entrusted with such information, part (f) did not apply. You responded that a jury must find that the information in question relates to national defense. Let's put this before a jury then! I'm sure that any jury would find that information as the inspector general described here:
SAP intelligence always has specialized controls on it meaning that even if you're the DNI (Director of National Intelligence), you can't just pull it up on your computer.
You would have to look at it in a SCIF, or maybe on a secure aircraft if you were Hillary Clinton. But the idea that SAP intel could ever wind up in an email is horrifying.
As for Kristian Saucier, admittedly, I may be ignorant of some key facts you might be able to help me with. How did he reveal his bad faith? Did he intend to share it with unauthorized people? Was it the fact that he destroyed data?
WRT Clinton's involvement, you seem to think that ratio of sensitive to mundane emails or her intent makes a difference. As I tire of saying, the pertinent part of the statute part (f), makes no mention of either.
mudbug: You responded that a jury must find that the information in question relates to national defense.
That you brought up Saucier shows you still didn't understand the underlying issue. There's little doubt the government could prove that some of the information on the Clinton email system was "relating to the national defense". However, what they couldn't prove was that Clinton knew that the information was so classified.
mudbug: How did he reveal his bad faith?
Saucier pleaded guilty to knowingly retaining national defense information and also to obstruction of justice. The key is that the government could prove he knew all along that the information was related to the national defense, and that he was breaking law when he took the pictures.
However, what they couldn't prove was that Clinton knew that the information was so classified.
That's bullshit, kiddiez.
Keep tap dancing, you've been proven wrong again.
See the above link.
Z: However, what they couldn't prove was that Clinton knew that the information was so classified
Are you saying that Clinton cannot recognize Top Secret SAP information? Then she should never have been entrusted with sensitive information.
Z: The key is that the government could prove he knew all along that the information was related to the national defense, and that he was breaking law when he took the pictures.
That is not different from Hillary's situation.
mudbug: Are you saying that Clinton cannot recognize Top Secret SAP information? Then she should never have been entrusted with sensitive information.
She reportedly relied upon career experts in the field. It's not atypical for classified information to make its way into emails. Some of it is even found in the New York Times.
mudbug: That is not different from Hillary's situation.
Repeating your error doesn't make it come true. Saucier pleaded guilty. That's because the government was set to prove that Saucier knew the information was "relating to national security". On the other hand, the government could not prove that Clinton knew the information found in her emails was "relating to national security". Indeed, such a claim doesn't comport with the facts, or even make much sense. There's no reason for Clinton to knowingly use email for classified information when she had ready access, and extensively used, a secure channel.
Comey: "But you know what would be a double standard? If she were prosecuted for gross negligence."
She reportedly relied upon career experts in the field.
So did she rely on experts when SHE decided to set up her secret server?
Or when SHE decided to delete over 30,000 emails containing classified information?
Thanks in advance, kiddiez.
Keep tap dancing.
Consider a scenario. You are delivering a folder from one office to another. You are negligent and lose the folder. It turns out, unbeknownst to you, that the folder contained classified information. Are you guilty under the Espionage Act? No. Because you did not know the folder contained classified information. To be subject to prosecution, you would have to know beforehand that the information was "relating to national security".
Another false analogy, kiddiez.
You've been proven wrong.
Keep tap dancing.
That should have become obvious when Obama and the Democrats used the IRS to go after people for their political persuasions and only give nonprofit recognition to those groups whose philosophical views they agreed with.
Note: Lerner STILL hasn't been indicted.
Note 2: What Obama/IRS did is identical to Article II of the Nixon impeachment articles.
One thing missing iin the discussion of the Cliven Bundy issue is that he did in fact commit numerous crimes and deserves to go to jail. So why is he getting a lot of favorable press? Simply because there is a land grab in the West. The MSM, big business and billionaires are all out to get ahold of public lands and the first and absolutely necessary step is to put those lands into the hands of state legislatures. Utah has already begun the process of selling of the lands and they haven't even got the deeds yet. In Nevada the big business, many of them foreign businesses, are drooling over the thought of acquiring billions of acres of land at pennies an acre. Someone; some people are going to get rich selling off your lands but Americans are going to get screwed.
African-American unemployment hits lowest rate in history ... Restated: President Trump's removal of the regulatory and taxation shackles that have strangled business investment is expanding the number of jobs available
Whaddaya know. He posted his own refutation.
You lost me, Zach. How does that chart of the white-black unemployment gap refute anything?
mudbug: How does that chart of the white-black unemployment gap refute anything?
It shows relative black unemployment decreasing. However, here is black unemployment. Please note that the recent decrease is just a continuation of the trend established during the Obama Administration. There is no noticeable effect at this point due to Trump.
Then maybe you meant to refer to this quote rather than the quote in your post:
For a purported white supremacist, President Trump is improving the lives of African-Americans far more than President Obama did.
Of course the point is that since Trump is a white supremacist, the black unemployment should have gone up - especially since it was going to take some magic to increase employment and it was impossible to to bring the economic growth rate back to the previous norm (~3%).
The kiddiez intent was to mislead.
They were called on it then and the usual tap dancing began.
Same as it ever was.
mudbug: Of course the point is that since Trump is a white supremacist, the black unemployment should have gone up
Huh? We made no such claim, nor is that the claim at issue, which is that "Trump's removal of the regulatory and taxation shackles that have strangled business investment is expanding the number of jobs available." Rather, the evidence shows that we are still in the same expansion that started early in Obama's term.
The deeper the snow, the more men were admitted for heart attacks. For example, for snowfalls of more than eight inches, there was a 16% increase in hospital admissions compared to days with no snow.
The deeper the snow, the more men died of heart attacks. A 34% increase was observed the day after an eight-inch snowfall, and higher rates were noted when even more snow fell.
Similar observations were made for duration of snowfall. The longer it snowed, the higher the rates of heart attack and related deaths among men.
A link between snowfall and heart attack was not observed among women.
leash the feds... (put the criminal FBI "leadeship" in jail...
A biased G-man named Comey
Loved Hillary as his BFF Homey
he saved her uranium-bribed ass
gave her staffs’ clear crimes a pass
And filled the FISA Court full of balomey
FBI lies were quite slick
Especially their FISA Court trick
They bought fake Russian stuff
for a phony Court bluff
to “insure” Hillary’s election real quick
You bet the feds need to be leashed. Have you read about the malicious prosecution of Howard Root?
1. Who DOESN'T WANT a "Gorilla Channel"? I want one. I NEED one. Some smart dude is going to start one now, and make a tidy fortune. Because Gorillas rock.
2. There is no Libertarian quandary on pot and the enforcement of law. The Feds have no Constitutionally-delegated power to make or enforce drug laws. So there is no Constitutional constraints to states making their own drug laws. Which prevents the Feds from impeding on states passing their own laws.
Sessions will fail once any actions he takes hit the Supreme Court.
I'd be so thrilled to see the S. Ct. rule that the federal government has no authority to legalize or criminalize drugs. I don't really care that much what the states do about it, either. I'm not one to ask the police to control whether people abuse themselves with drugs, and I doubt the police can have much effect, anyway, even if I did think it was a good idea to try. My whole focus would be on DUI enforcement, considering "D" in its broadest outlines: if you're altered enough to be screwing up publicly, you're fair game. Otherwise, your business.
Re: A Libertarian Quandary on Pot, Federalism, and the Rule of Law
Whether or not there's a quandary amongst libertarians on the rule of law, there's no excuse for Sessions and Trump (at least according to WH spokesman Sarah Huckabee Sanders) to claim that the law is the law and must be followed whether they agree or not with it - the Controlled Substances Act has a whole section on how the Attorney General has the authority to add or subtract or change the scheduling of drugs. It doesn't take an act of Congress to decriminalize marijuana, all it takes is Trump to tell Sessions to re-schedule marijuana to the lowest classification and suddenly it's no longer any kind of priority for the feds.
Of course, Obama was asked about this very thing shortly after winning his second term and, like any spineless politician, claimed that making a big change like this would require Congressional action. Without adding that what he meant was that he sure as heck wasn't going to risk any political capital by doing anything that might be controversial.
Which further reduces the so-called 'quandary'.
As a Libertarian, I had several people ask me how I was going to address this "issue" because it seemed to pose big problems for the concept of Libertarianism.
But it doesn't. Not even a little. The reality is, just decriminalize it. Either by taking it off Schedule 1 or by just letting the states decide what they want to do (which is what the Constitution calls for).
Netanyahu’s offer of $3,500 and a plane ticket is good through March...
So...what is the reward for not going to Israel in the first place? And where do I send an invoice?
After I was stalked for three days and followed on to an airplane by a group of women representing my DH's former employer, women who were attempting to force my DH into signing a bogus research grant application, I called the local FBI. When I showed up for my appointment at the Federal Building the young FBI agent was sitting silently in the corner. The woman in charge of our meeting was someone I had not called--the former US Attorney appointed by Clinton. She was much older than the young agent and a member of the sexually disoriented culture. The FBI agent asked "shouldn't we do something about the stalking?" The US Attorney responded "no--it's just academic gamesmanship". However, two days later the former US Attorney did visit the new president of the 'university' whose employees were doing the stalking. The new president also being a member of that particular cultural group and best friends with the former US Attorney. Haven't had much faith in the FBI since then.
Maybe none of you called Trump a white supremacist, but a lot of lefties did. Pretty strange for a white supremacist to celebrate record low black unemployment.
mudbug: Maybe none of you called Trump a white supremacist, but a lot of lefties did.
There's evidence that Trump's real estate business has discriminated against blacks in the past, and he has reportedly made racist statements. However, it's not so much that he doesn't like blacks — his personal beliefs are shallow in all matters not Trump —, but that he makes common cause with white nationalists and their ilk.