"Just as every cop is a criminal, and all the sinners saints..." -Mick Jagger,Sympathy For The Devil
"Injustice in the end produces independence" - Voltaire
Well, you can't say I didn't call this one. We no longer live in a country where justice for all means anything.
Hillary Clinton is now officially above the law.
Today FBI Director James Comey announced that the FBI would recommend that even though Mrs. Clinton clearly broke the law, she should not face prosecution on criminal charges. And his acrobatics in doing so were something to behold. To summarize, here's what he said:
- He spent the first fifteen minutes or so talking about about how Mrs Clinton broke the law with her private servers, negligently handled classified information including e-mails labeled 'top secret', the highest classification, that she should have known better, that no person in her position should have compromised America's security in that way, that foreign intel services from countries hostile to the U.S. may very likely have hacked her unprotected server.
- That about 800 emails Mrs. Clinton sent to her unprotected private servers contained information that was classified or highly classified at the time they were sent, and another 2000 were up-classified after they were sent. That included eight “Top Secret” chains, 36 with “Secret” information and eight more that were “Confidential.” .
- That the 30,000 work-related emails Mrs. Clinton refused to turn over to the FBI that were deleted illegally by her lawyers on her orders not only violates federal law and the legal agreement Mrs. Clinton signed when she became secretary of state but criminal laws on obstruction of justice
- After spending the first part of his announcement spelling out exactly why Mrs. Clinton should be indicted, Comey dropped the bomb- in spite of her blatant law-breaking, Comey said that no reasonable prosecutor would bring charges, because there's no evidence she intended to compromise national security.
- And to cap it all off, he said that while they will likely recommend criminal prosecution in the future for exactly what Mrs. Clinton did, they won't recommend that Mrs. Clinton be prosecuted.
Let's look at how many hoops Comey was made to jump through here.
For starters, he had to rewrite Section 793(f) of the federal penal code (Title 18). Notice what I've emphasized:
(a) Whoever, for the purpose of obtaining information respecting the national defense with intent or reason to believe that the information is to be used to the injury of the United States, or to the advantage of any foreign nation, goes upon, enters, flies over, or otherwise obtains information concerning any vessel, aircraft, work of defense, navy yard, naval station, submarine base, fueling station, fort, battery, torpedo station, dockyard, canal, railroad, arsenal, camp, factory, mine, telegraph, telephone, wireless, or signal station, building, office, research laboratory or station or other place connected with the national defense owned or constructed, or in progress of construction by the United States or under the control of the United States, or of any of its officers, departments, or agencies, or within the exclusive jurisdiction of the United States, or any place in which any vessel, aircraft, arms, munitions, or other materials or instruments for use in time of war are being made, prepared, repaired, stored, or are the subject of research or development, under any contract or agreement with the United States, or any department or agency thereof, or with any person on behalf of the United States, or otherwise on behalf of the United States, or any prohibited place so designated by the President by proclamation in time of war or in case of national emergency in which anything for the use of the Army, Navy, or Air Force is being prepared or constructed or stored, information as to which prohibited place the President has determined would be prejudicial to the national defense; or
(b) Whoever, for the purpose aforesaid, and with like intent or reason to believe, copies, takes, makes, or obtains, or attempts to copy, take, make, or obtain, any sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, document, writing, or note of anything connected with the national defense; or
(c) Whoever, for the purpose aforesaid, receives or obtains or agrees or attempts to receive or obtain from any person, or from any source whatever, any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, or note, of anything connected with the national defense, knowing or having reason to believe, at the time he receives or obtains, or agrees or attempts to receive or obtain it, that it has been or will be obtained, taken, made, or disposed of by any person contrary to the provisions of this chapter; or
(d) Whoever, lawfully having possession of, access to, control over, or being entrusted with any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, or note relating to the national defense, or information relating to the national defense which information the possessor has reason to believe could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation, willfully communicates, delivers, transmits or causes to be communicated, delivered, or transmitted or attempts to communicate, deliver, transmit or cause to be communicated, delivered or transmitted the same to any person not entitled to receive it, or willfully retains the same and fails to deliver it on demand to the officer or employee of the United States entitled to receive it; or
(e) Whoever having unauthorized possession of, access to, or control over any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, or note relating to the national defense, or information relating to the national defense which information the possessor has reason to believe could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation, willfully communicates, delivers, transmits or causes to be communicated, delivered, or transmitted, or attempts to communicate, deliver, transmit or cause to be communicated, delivered, or transmitted the same to any person not entitled to receive it, or willfully retains the same and fails to deliver it to the officer or employee of the United States entitled to receive it; or
(f) Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer—
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
(g) If two or more persons conspire to violate any of the foregoing provisions of this section, and one or more of such persons do any act to effect the object of the conspiracy, each of the parties to such conspiracy shall be subject to the punishment provided for the offense which is the object of such conspiracy.
Well, based on what James Comey had to say, Mrs. Clinton blatantly violated federal law here. And we haven't even gotten to the Records Management Act by Federal Agencies, 44 U.S. Code Chapter 31.
She clearly violated § 3101, Records management by agency heads by deleting the e-mails and by, as Huma Abedin admitted under oath, destroying her legally required calendar of meetings and appointments.
§ 3105 - Safeguards, which mandates that the head of a federal agency must establish safeguards against the loss or destruction of federal records, and that 'records in the custody of the agency are not to be alienated (accessed by people who shouldn't have them) or destroyed except in accordance with sections 3301–3314 of this title.'
And § 3106 - Unlawful removal, destruction of records, which speaks for itself.
Mrs. Clinton also likely perjured herself before congress during the Benghazi hearings based on what the FBI director had to say today.
So how did Comey justify saying no reasonable prosecutor would bring charges? Well, first of all he lied and said he couldn't find any legal precedents. I suppose he never heard of Scooter Libbey, General David Petraeus, Bradley (Chelsea) Manning, Edward Snowden and Jonathan Pollard, just to name a few.
And second, he tried to use an old lawyer's trick. He brought up the supposed lack of intent as a reason not to charge Mrs. Clinton in an attempt to divert us from the actual issue, which was criminal negligence.
If a drunk driver runs into another vehicle and kills or injures someone, obviously he or she never intended to do so. Few if any people do, yet they are prosecuted just the same. The laws I've cited above have nothing to do with intent, but with the gross negligence which even James Comey admitted Hillary Clinton was guilty of. That's why congress criminalized gross negligence when it comes to classified material and other official documents.
And intent? Even if it mattered (which it doesn't in this case), illegally destroying e-mails, putting together illegal private servers in the first place, and as even Comey admitted, failing to turn over a number of e-mails when required to certainly looks like intent, at least in my universe.
And James Comey knows this very well. So why the bizarre performance today? Why not just say that based on his investigation, there was no grounds to prosecute instead of spending a quarter of an hour telling the nation exactly why Mrs. Clinton should be prosecuted before telling us he had no intention of recommending that course of action? Besides, shouldn’t the FBI let the prosecutor decide that without tainting their reputation? Why not just turn over the evidence and usurp the Department of Justice's function?
It's really not that difficult to figure out, at least the way I see it.
The fix was obviously in for some time, and James Comey was fully aware of it. I'm not sure what kind of horse's head the Obama Administration and the Clintons put in Comey's bed to get him on board, but it must have been substantial. And to add to that, he was likely told that even if he did recommend prosecution, Loretta Lynch was going to see to it that it never went anywhere. So why destroy himself for nothing?
Meanwhile, he probably felt he had to make at least some attempt to try to redeem his own honor and that of the FBI, so he actually conducted an investigation to keep his agents' morale up... and to send a message to the American people that regardless of the decision he was forced to make, Hillary Clinton really was guilty as charged. That, I think, is why he took the time to essentially make the case for indicting her before swallowing the bitter pill at the end. I'm guessing a bit here, but I wouldn't be surprised if that part of Comey's act was not exactly in the script and he might end up resigning after a few months so as not to make it look too obvious.
So the meeting between our Attorney General and Bill Clinton was simply to get the final details and the timing straightened out. And it's no coincidence that two days after her meeting with Mr. Bill, the Justice department filed a motion in federal court seeking a 27-month delay in producing correspondence between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s four top aides and officials with the Clinton Foundation,which is supposedly being investigated over all those lucrative speaking fees and huge donations to the Clinton Foundation that came from foreign countries and large corporations who just happened to have business pending at the State Department while Mrs. Clinton was running it.That isn't going to go anywhere either, and never mind that our attorney general met with a potential witness to both investigations. After all, this was a situation where there was a home brew server with classified information in Bill Clinton's basement at the Clinton Foundation. And a back up in somebody's bathroom somewhere.
Needless to say, that investigation of the Clinton Foundation will also fade into the woodwork.
So, where do we go from here?
Mrs. Clinton and her execrable media allies will of course celebrate this as a victory and an exoneration, although even a few of the usual suspects appear to be having some doubts.
As for the other side, I've already heard some of the pious outrage and while I don't disagree with most of it, I have to admit that it surprises me, just a little. We've been ruled by these criminal swine for almost eight years now, and they've amply demonstrated their contempt for us, our country's laws and our Constitution. They no longer even feel the need to attempt to hide it anymore. The Obama Administration is probably the most lawless in our history,and they've gotten away with it countless times, even with 'Republicans' controlling congress. Did anyone expect something different this time? Really?
A lot is going to depend on how the American people react to this, just four months away from an election. Given how common it has become lately to lie to pollsters, we probably won't know until after November when the votes are counted.
There may actually be a silver lining here. It's just possible that enough people may have gotten to the point where they're disgusted enough to no longer even to consider putting this corrupt snake in office. And it's less likely but not impossible that the GOP establishment who have been scheming to sabotage Donald Trump either at the convention or during the campaign are going to finally wake up and realize exactly what a Hillary Clinton presidency is going to be like.
Comey himself gave us a good indication of that during his performance today:
"To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now."
The #nevertrumpers and the GOP establishment had better pay close attention, get their brains together and understand that in a Clinton Administration, they're going to be targeted like never before for the least possible 'infraction' of any laws, whether they actually did anything illegal or not.
As for Donald Trump and whomever his running mate is, they now have some fresh, redolent substance in recent public memory behind the label 'Crooked Hillary.' They need to remind the American public about that at every opportunity. We'll soon see if we keep our Republic.
And here's another thought on the matter.
When those in power engage in this any means to an end Alinskyite hustle, they never stop to think of the message it sends, and how it could backfire.
While it has sometimes been imperfectly administered in practice, America has always been based on the ideal that everyone is equal before the law. Take away that expectation and you lay the seeds not just for contempt for the law but for those whom claim to govern legally. And historically, that has led to some unanticipated consequences for the ruling classes.