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.
Has the Justice Dept and the FBI been a rogue system? Dem advisor Penn says they have been a state unto themselves. It is true that they hold frightening power, but when they go political, can't be fired, and refuse to respond to congress, what is that?
What would you say, what stories would you tell, to avoid going to jail or to bankrupt yourself and your family on legal defense? They are an organized crime syndicate and should be treated accordingly.
They don't care, those prosecutors, about the rule of law and perjury. They suborn perjury by squeezing witnesses, and that's a crime.
All across the country, poor people sit in jail because they can't afford bail. Suddenly, with one of their own in the docket, Fox News is worried about the fairness of the legal system. Most prosecutors try very hard to make the system work. However, prosecutors are human and have their own biases, and the system is decidedly stacked against the poor. Sitting in jail because you can't afford bail is not an option for someone with a family to support.
Not sure how you thought it worked, but contacting witnesses to discuss facts of the case is witness tampering. There is probable cause to revoke bail on this basis. The argument is that Manafort, rich and well-connected, can't get fair treatment in the courts. How much more difficult it must be for poor minorities.
Zach, we partially agree. The economic mismatch of a federal prosecutor and the FBI with unlimited resources, vs an individual to force testimony desired by the prosecutor, is witness tampering. It should not be "witness tampering" to communicate with colleagues about anything, as long as it can be made public. (freedom of speech and association) We need to beef up public defenders, and reduce the threshold for access to public defenders. The DOJ should not be sllowed to bankrupt people into slanting testimony to what the DOJ wants. We need to have and foster public skepticism of FBI witnesses, especially when using the taintable and biased "form 302" system for "process crimes of misleading the FBI". That the FBI can't record interviews, and tries to trap people just to prosecute them, is reprehensible.. Hopefully, juries will recognize the bias and wrongdoing going forward, so your incarcerated friends are not buliied and wrongfully convicted. It should be a statutory crime for the DOJ/FBI to bully people, with fines paid to those who are bullied.
jaybird: It should not be "witness tampering" to communicate with colleagues about anything, as long as it can be made public.
It will be when Manafort goes on trial for obstruction. Meanwhile, the judge found probable cause of witness tampering, sufficient to revoke bail.
jaybird: The DOJ should not be sllowed to bankrupt people into slanting testimony to what the DOJ wants.
Manafort has more than enough financial resources and connections to make an adequate defense. His problem concerns his culpability.
jaybird: It should be a statutory crime for the DOJ/FBI to bully people, with fines paid to those who are bullied.
The disparity between sentences of those who plead and those who contest the charges can be so great as to be overly coercive. On the other hand, making deals for a lesser sentence is an important tool used to break apart criminal conspiracies, and the tradition is deeply embedded in the law. "You won't hang, if you tell us who pulled the trigger." Not sure how law enforcement could work effectively otherwise.