The 6 Jan Committee has reached the conclusion that…


Trump ought to be prosecuted.

The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol voted Monday to send to Justice Department prosecutors a recommendation that former president Donald Trump be charged with four crimes: inciting or assisting an insurrection, obstruction of an official proceeding of Congress, conspiracy to defraud the United States and conspiracy to make a false statement. The move has no legal weight, but marks the first time Congress has made such a referral for a former president.

Will the Justice Dept. do anything about it? Will Trump be allowed to continue to run for president? Will there be any consequences at all?

I have no confidence in justice in this country anymore.

Comments

  1. Akira MacKenzie says

    But will they… or will they decide that in the name of “unity,” “bipartisanship,” and “healing the nation” to just let the matter drop. It’s not as if any Dem administration has ever taken the threat of domestic fascist terrorism seriously, despite their rhetoric. If they did, we wouldn’t be in this mess.

  2. whywhywhy says

    Mr predictions: A few Trump aides will be prosecuted, but Trump will not. We will continue to fund Trump’s office at the cost of millions per year. And this office will continue to undermine our country.

  3. wzrd1 says

    Even if they do prosecute him, he’d still be allowed to run for office. He’d only be prohibited if he is convicted of a felony.
    As for him actually being charged, I’m with Akira.

  4. nomdeplume says

    In the word of Homer Simpson “D’Oh”. But nothing will happen. Note that Pence, for example, a man who Trump turned into a target on 1/6, says Trump shouldn’t be prosecuted. The Murdoch media will ride into the rescue, and the Republicans will refuse to countenance any action whatsoever.

  5. Akira MacKenzie says

    When the hearings started, I heard a couple of “leftish” commentators say that prosecuting Trump would not be worth any violent retaliation his cult would hypothetically commit. If punishing wrong doers is dangerous and the safe bet his to coddle their corruption and tyranny of fascist terrorists, then this shithole country deserves to collapse.

  6. Tethys says

    Since a Special Prosecutor was recently appointed specifically for the various criminal charges that are unique to the seditionist in chief, it seems likely that this referral will simply be rolled in with the other criminal charges.

    There has been very little in the media about Jack Smith, other than he is widely considered a stellar prosecutor.

    Looks more like the various Dem appointed people running their departments are busy putting together a meticulous, highly competent legal team which is quietly doing its assigned job.

  7. StevoR says

    Just. Arrest. Trump.

    Why has that taken so long, still not happened and not happened long ago – like Januay 7th or the second he stopped being POTUS? Stillbetter late than never.

    Oh & arrest all those who aided and abetted the conspiracry tooverthrow Amercian Democracy on Jan 6th includingserving Republican office holders too please.

    PS. Should that really need a please? Oh & what about that self-declared party of tough on crime and personal responsibilityand do the crime, do the time huh?

  8. Akira MacKenzie says

    @ 6

    I’ll believe it when I see Trump and Co. hang from a gibbit for the sport of his own crows!

  9. Artor says

    I’m so glad that after years of deliberation, Congress has finally reached the conclusion that was plainly obvious to everyone who isn’t a malignant, blithering moron. It’s honestly better than I expected of them.

  10. Tethys says

    @8 Y’all have a horribly violent mind. You calling for gibbets is EXACTLY what the assholes were doing on Jan 6th as regards Pence.

    You can believe the actual recommendation, which lists 4 serious crimes that have been referred to the Justice Department. Top notch lawyers tend to have a high regard for actual law and order, regardless of any political affiliation.

  11. says

    When this started and people were talking about indicting him I thought great, then as it dragged on I got bored, now I am disgusted whenever I see articles that imply that something someday will be done by somebody. At this point I also feel sad for the people who still buy into this BS.
    There is no justice in this country.

  12. jsrtheta says

    I have been reading complaint after complaint about how “Nothing will be done! Garland is a wuss! We’ve seen all the evidence! Are they blind?” And so on.

    First, I have no idea what will happen. But I was a prosecutor for 10 years, at the state level, and i have seen complex prosecutions put together. At the federal level, it is orders of magnitude more complex. And VERY time-consuming.

    There are literally thousands of witnesses, millions of pages of documents, and god knows how many hours of video. And before going to trial, you have to discern just how all the disparate pieces of evidence come together and how they must be used. Perhaps more importantly, what evidence is worth developing and what needs to be left on the cutting room floor.

    Add to this the fact that congressional hearings were held, and DOJ couldn’t do much until they were over, with regard to the witnesses both Congress and DOJ have/will be relying on. You don’t lock in your witnesses without knowing how they’ve already testified in Congress. (A LOT of witnesses never testified in public, but testified behind closed doors, and no one here knows what they said, or even if they testified at all.) You can’t put your witnesses on the record, even behind closed doors, unless you know their testimony in each proceeding and know that they are being consistent. If you don’t, they will be impeached. And jurors hate any witness who does not testify consistently all the time, even though as humans we almost never say the same thing exactly the same way each time we talk about it. Murder cases have been lost for less.

    All of this demands thousands of hours of work by hundreds of witnesses and lawyers. DOJ doesn’t go to trial unless they are 95% certain they will win. When they do go to trial, it’s something to behold, because the fed almost never loses. But if you do go to trial, and lose, that’s it. There are no do-overs. The Constitution forbids it.

    These are maybe the most complex cases we’ll ever see. And ONE WITNESS can take the whole thing down. I worked Cook County Traffic Court when the federal Operation Greylord case was revealed. This involved the investigation of the Cook County judicial system. Many, many lawyers and not a few judges were convicted. And nobody had any idea this was happening. A lot of lawyers and judges I knew went to federal prison. Those who didn’t thought they’d dodged the biggest bullet of their lives.

    After I was transferred out of Traffic Court, ANOTHER wave of indictments were handed down, and many of the judges and lawyers who thought they were in the clear wound up being convicted in this second wave. AND NO ONE KNEW THIS WAS COMING.

    That’s how DOJ works. Operation Greylord took years to complete. Many people routinely said this lawyer or that judge was dirty, but no one thought anything would happen to them. It was Cook County, right? This had been going on for years. But DOJ did their work and a lot of people went to prison. One judge committed suicide.

    This case is much more complex (though unlike Greylord, there are likely no, or at most few, undercover agents involved). I am not aware of a single “not guilty” verdict.

    Again, I do not know what DOJ is doing any more than anyone else here. But I’ve seen them work before, and I’ve worked with FBI, DEA and ATF on cases, and I’ve known a lot of U.S. Attorneys and their Assistants, and these people don’t go in the bag for anyone.

    So, everybody, chill.

  13. robro says

    Speaking of rats, Musk rat did a poll. He asked his 122 million followers if he should step down from Twitter. Polls were open for 12 hours. 57.5 percent of those voting said he should step down. He swore he would abide by their vote. We’ll see. I’m waiting with baited breath.

  14. lochaber says

    Suppose he is brought up on charges, what’s to stop jury nullification from effectively acquitting him of all the charges? It just takes one person, and statistically it’s pretty likely to get at least one pro-trump magat in a pool of twelve people…

  15. hemidactylus says

    @10- Tethys
    I’d be satisfied with a press laden perp walk and orange jumpsuit future
    . I keep confusing gibbets and giblets. Maybe limit his diet solely to boiled chicken gizzards, livers and hearts in perpetuity? No ketchup.

  16. wsierichs says

    I’ve been – and still am – very pessimistic about Garland. I think he was slow walking the investigation in hopes Trump would disappear into obscurity.

    Instead, Trump continued to make himself a very public figure, which I think put a little pressure on Garland. Then came the FBI search and the purloined documents reveal. I’m slightly more optimistic – still a pessimist, just not as big – that Garland now may find it impossible not to take action, given what the House committee uncovered and the extent of the stolen documents, particularly very secret ones. He might just feel that he no longer has room to stall but must try to do something to save his reputation.

    Of course, if he really wanted to do that, he would have appointed the special prosecutor long ago so he would be up to speed by now and would not have to start from the beginning. Likewise, the Democrats in the House would have opened their investigation of Trump at least a year earlier so as to jump-start a DOJ investigation earlier. I think the Dems also were just hoping everything would blow over. I’m wondering it the House leadership started action after leaning Trump has been stalling on returning stolen government documents, some of them highly classified.

  17. kenbakermn says

    Sorry, my GIF embedding skills are sub-par. That was Kenan Thompson on SNL doing his “ain’t nuttin gonna happen”.

  18. hemidactylus says

    @13- robro
    Hopefully he gets pressured to step down from both Twitter and Tesla by the adults in the room. And maybe give him a year long Twitter timeout so he can reevaluate the hot mess between his ears. Or have Neuralink implant the filter he wasn’t born with.

    He still has the successes of SpaceX to dote on, just quietly away from antisocial media.

  19. david says

    To me, the most certain consequence of this referral is that, next year, a republican-led house committee will issue a criminal referral of Biden, on the same charges, but related to Hunter Biden’s laptop and something-something border crisis.

  20. billseymour says

    I watched on PBS, and they kept repeating that the referral is “unprecedented”.  Nobody mentioned what’s really unprecedented…what we’ve never had before…was a president who would behave the way Trump did.

  21. birgerjohansson says

    Jsrtheta, Thanks.
    I don’t know in which way the federal republic of Germany is different, but they got things done pretty quickly. I assume the historical luggage is so heavy the rules are written to stop any putsch decisively.

  22. birgerjohansson says

    One way to get rid of the Trump clan might be to offer them asylum in Argentina…. or Zimbabwe. I was about to add North Korea but not even the Trumpers are that crazy.

  23. says

    For decades there has been a legal doctrine which prevailed in both parties that Presidents should not be prosecuted for crimes committed while in office. (Although there was a lot of rather blatantly-made-up justification, the main point was “we have to do this so that we don’t have to pay penalties for our crimes” — we don’t prosecute you for arming terrorists, you don’t prosecute us for lying under oath; we don’t prosecute you for lying the country into a war in Iraq, you don’t prosecute us for lying the country into a war in Libya.) Salon, IIRC, actually ran an article a few months ago about how some of the Democratic bigwigs are beginning to question this doctrine.

  24. Tethys says

    America has never had to prosecute its POTUS before. I think it may call for a military court and special tribunal, as inciting an insurrection because you lost an election is rather unprecedented in US law.

    Lincoln used a tribunal to try, and convict some civil war conspiracists. They all hung as traitors to their country, but SCOTUS doesn’t allow tribunals for US civilians anymore.

  25. whheydt says

    Re: robro @ #13…
    What are you baiting your breath with? I await a response with bated breath…

  26. robro says

    whheydt @ #28 — I use alcohol when possible. In any case, English spelling isn’t my strong suit.

  27. John Morales says

    [OT]

    It’s a punny joke by WC Fields and others, also several cartoons.

    The cat eats some cheese and skulks by the mouse-hole with, ahem, baited breath.

    (A joke I myself use, quite deliberately)

  28. Akira MacKenzie says

    @ 10

    Yeah, it would have been a real shame if they lynched that spineless Bible-fucker.

    Why the fuck do you care? They’re fascists! They deserve to die.

  29. drew says

    Will Trump be allowed to continue to run for president?

    Debs ran from prison. I don’t see how not even officially being accused and merely having mud flung by congresscritters would stop Trump’s candidacy.

    Now would Congress stop funneling money into the pockets of defense contractors (that industry was doing just fine already) and concern itself with health care, alleviation of poverty, and the general well-being of American citizens, please?

  30. silvrhalide says

    @14 The jury is Congress, for impeachment. For federal charges, trial in federal court, which in no way resembles the half-assed local courts, where the jury consists of 12 people who aren’t bright enough to get out of jury duty. Federal court is a completely different animal. Keep in mind as well that a federal judge hands down a sentence and you will serve that sentence. There is no time off for good behavior, reduction of time, etc. Whatever the sentence is, that is what you serve.

    As far as state charges, those are in the appropriate state court. Given that the southern district of NY (ie., Manhattan, aka NYC, aka Wall Street) has him up on tax evasion charges, there is a real possibility of prosecution by the IRS as well, ie., federal charges, but not necessarily related to the Congressional charges.

    Keep in mind that the special prosecutor can consider all charges when putting together a case.
    Also keep in mind that many criminal prosecutions piggyback on other prosecutions, which can include, state, federal and civil/tort. Plenty of prosecutors (DAs, federal prosecutors, etc.) will follow a trial, scoop up evidence & testimony–all of which is legal because it’s now in the public record AND under oath–and use that in prosecutions in their own jurisdiction.

    That’s just ONE of the reasons that complex cases like this take so long. There are a lot of moving parts in play here and just one screwup can be the reason all the charges get dismissed or evidence must be legally withheld/withdrawn from a case. Not something ANY prosecutor wants on his/her record, especially with something this high profile, and, as was mentioned previously, unprecedented.

    Whoever prosecutes this goes in the history books as well as the law books. No one in the prosecution wants to go down in history as the guy who fucked up.

    @15 I wouldn’t be satisfied with something so cheap. This guy tried to subvert the will of the people, in a lawful election and the peaceful transfer of power. The world watched in awe when the contested election of 2000 ended in the peaceful transfer of power. It’s what make the USA the USA. This fucker needs to go down and go down HARD, to be humiliated and broken on the rack of public opinion, to go down in the history books as the abject failure, petty thief, criminal and traitor that he is, as a walking object lesson for anyone who might try to follow in his footsteps. HE TRIED TO STAGE A COUP AGAINST THE US GOVERNMENT. PEOPLE DIED IN THE ATTEMPTED COUP. He does NOT get to skate off to some minimum security prison for 5 years to work on his golf game after 5 minutes of infamy in a heavily-photographed perp walk, in which he will undoubtedly be wearing that stupid smug smirk.

    @17 Garland needs to be careful–his first mistake will be his last. He undoubtedly has his federal career to consider as well but there has to be a certain amount of schadenfreude in play. The GOP blocked his nomination to the Supreme Court and instead put a drunken rapist on the Supreme Court, in virtually identical circumstances of Garland’s proposed nomination. I suspect Garland sees this at least in part, as payback. Now he’s Attorney General instead of Supreme Court Justice, with the opportunity to prosecute the GOP’s diseased, senile, bloated, orange beagle in what will undoubtedly be the highest profile case in his career and his lifetime. In his place, I’d be double-checking everything too. Opportunity knocks once, temptation pounds constantly at the door.

    Whatever his reasons are for the slow pace of the investigation, I sincerely doubt that a wish for Trump to disappear into obscurity was one of them. Caution and a whole lot of moving parts, plus ever-more evidence–and charges at the state level!–seem a likelier reason for the slow pace.

    @6 & 10 1,000+
    Trump has a whole bunch of tax problems, in addition to the Jan. 6th charges. The IRS is like a glacier–it takes a long time to get where it’s going but when it arrives, it will fuck up your world beyond all repair. Given that some of the alleged tax evasion may implicate Dolt 45 in bribery as well as emoluments, that’s reason enough for Garland to take a slow approach.
    What a lot of posters on this thread are suggesting is fucking AMATEUR HOUR. It’s what Rudy Giuliani did, when he very publicly announced that he was going after the mob, telegraphed every move in the media and the night before his highly-publicized raid of Fulton Fish Market, the whole market burned to the ground in a highly suspicious and astonishingly thorough case of arson. An arson case that was never prosecuted because no witnesses could be found. THAT’S what podunk, benchwarmer moves look like, kids.

    @25 NO. ABSOLUTELY NOT.
    This is the USA, not some fucking third world banana republic. There are no deals here. Trump tried to overthrow the federal government, subvert the will of the people and install a dictatorship. He will face charges in a court of law, because we are a nation of laws. If he is found not guilty, then he goes free, not into exile. If he is found guilty, then he goes to federal prison, not into exile, taking all his ill-gotten wealth with him, living in luxury.

    Dolt 45 isn’t the only thing on trial here. The US’s future as a nation of laws and as a nation, period, is at stake here.

  31. says

    Hopefully [QElon] gets pressured to step down from both Twitter and Tesla by the adults in the room.

    Which adults — the ones who kicked in billions to help him buy Twitter, and not (AFAIK at least) uttered one peep of protest yet? I can’t think of any other adults he’d listen to.

    And are those adults at all surprised to find their Clown Prince breaking a promise? It’s not his first time, even strictly WRT Twitter.

  32. silvrhalide says

    @32 Accusations would not stop his candidacy but a conviction late in election year would bar him from office. It would also have the effect of the GOP having NO candidate in the next election, due to federal election rules (can’t change candidates past a certain date, candidacy must be declared by a certain date, etc.)

    Not a Pelosi fan but that woman is a masterclass in politics. She’s retiring as Speaker of the House but not from Congress. She still has her position as a US representative–a senior representative–and is giving up none of her committee appointments. She will continue to be a force to be reckoned with. As Speaker, she brought charges against Trump. His prosecution will play out over the next year, tainting every Republican candidate, every political decision the GOP makes. Even if there is no actual trial in 2023, the continuing investigation will continue to play out in the media, never allowing the American public to forget the GOP’s most venal candidate to date. The GOP will be forced to choose between supporting Dolt 45–and his endorsed candidates lost a number of Republican seats and races in 2022, it really hurt the GOP in the 2022 elections–or coming up with a new candidate who then has to compete against Dolt 45’s rabid fanbase for votes AND against the Democratic nominee, who currently looks to be Joe Biden. The surprisingly effective Joe Biden, who decisively pulled ahead in the 11th hour of the primary race. And who has advanced the Democratic agenda considerably in his first two years. Even without a trial and/or conviction, the GOP voting base will likely be split between voting for the shitbrindle orange turd–who, if he loses the GOP nomination, will almost certainly run as an independent–and whoever the GOP throws up as an alternative to the orange turd, thereby splitting the Republican vote.
    If Dolt 45 runs and wins in 2024 and is convicted, the GOP still loses the presidency for all intents and purposes. You can bet that whoever Dolt 45 chooses as a running mate will be even lower profile and have less political power and social presence than Pence. Dolt 45 doesn’t like to be outshone on ANY front. NPDs are like that.

    Keep in mind that Pelosi selected Liz Cheney to lead the Jan 6th hearings. She gave Liz Cheney the pound of flesh Liz so ardently wanted and used her as a lightening rod for all the Trumpista hate that any head of the Jan. 6th investigation hearing would have engendered. Liz Cheney was a walking dead person–it was fairly widely acknowledged that she would be outprimaried or voted out in the 2022 election–and Pelosi gave her what she wanted, burned none of her own people in the process and made herself look like she was reaching across the aisle and working with Republicans, the very picture of bipartisanship.

    She’s Machiavelli in a pantsuit and heels. Just because I don’t particularly like her doesn’t mean I’m not impressed by her.

  33. lasius says

    @36 silvrhalide

    “The world watched in awe when the contested election of 2000 ended in the peaceful transfer of power. It’s what make the USA the USA.”

    What does that mean? How is this something special to the USA?

  34. KG says

    The world watched in awe when the contested election of 2000 ended in the peaceful transfer of power. It’s what make the USA the USA.- silverhalide@34

    Srsly? Why do so many Americans, even liberal or progressive ones, cling to the illusion that the world looks to the USA for the very bestest in democratic practice? What I saw was the Supreme Court throw the election to the loser. And there wouldn’t have been any dispute but for the grossly undemocratic Electoral College. An earlier contested election, the 1876 contest between Hayes and Tilden, ended in a grubby deal which sold Black Americans in the former Confederacy down the river.

  35. KG says

    I’m waiting with baited breath. – robro@13

    What did you bait it with? The recommended bait depends on what you want to catch!

    (It’s “bated”, short for “abated”, meaning you’re holding your breath.)

  36. KG says

    I see others had picked up on robro’s “baited breath” – I tend to respond to comments when I read them, rather than reading on to see if others have done so, a bad habit I’ll try to break. And yes, as whheydt@29 says, it’s a very common error, in fact it’s probably more common than getting it right… so maybe it’s not really an error any more!

  37. John Morales says

    [OT]

    KG, kinda.

    As long as homophony is a thing, it will persist.

    (Stationery, stationary)

  38. Dr Sarah says

    @StevoR, #7: There’s a really good detailed explanation by a prosecutor at https://terikanefield.com/all-new-doj-investigation-faqs/ (short answer; because building a case that has no weaknesses or technical errors that a defense lawyer could tear apart takes a great deal of time and is worth doing right). I see there are a couple of really useful comments in this thread as well, at #12 and #38.

  39. says

    @11, Yep this requires a lot of time this is all going to happen really soon this is really complicated. All of that is complete BS. There is nothing complicated about this, there is nothing here that will take time to put together, this is not complicated. This is a complete failure of a “democratic” system to work. We are watching a failure in real time of what was left of our justice system. But you just go on telling me it is all going to get better, just give the powers that be a little more time and they will fix it all. Wanna bet some serious money on that?

  40. says

    Why do so many Americans, even liberal or progressive ones, cling to the illusion that the world looks to the USA for the very bestest in democratic practice?

    Indeed. The truth is more that we’re aware that American democracy is hanging by a thread and we’re super worried what’s going to happen when it breaks.

  41. says

    I, too, have no faith in the systems of our society. We have a ‘legal’ system, not a ‘JUSTICE’ system. The wheels of the Jan 6 committee ground so slowly, they will soon fall off when the repugnantcants start their ‘congressional insurrection’. tRUMP the magat has always slipped out of the hands of justice and I am afraid he will continue to do so. I felt compelled to add this, my comment, to all the above. And, remember, democracy is just a money-driven popularity contest.

  42. Rich Woods says

    @silvrhalide #34:

    The US’s future as a nation of laws and as a nation, period, is at stake here.

    Well said. There are about three hundred million people who need strongly reminding of that.

  43. bcw bcw says

    You can get detailed discussions of the Trump and Jan 6 legal saga at Marcy Wheelers site http://www.emptywheel.net .

    Building a case you won’t lose is complex. 1. Half the people involved are lawyers – you have to show you aren’t relying on communications that are lawyer-client unless you can show the communications are part of the crime. Screw this up and you lose the right to use the evidence. 2. You have to prove it. Having got access to texts – can you show what some indirect reference actually means? Most of the potential witnesses were committing crimes themselves and won’t testify at all or without a plea agreement – you have to prove what was said between people none of whom want to talk to you. On Jan 6, you have to show Trump was aware and involved in what happened, not just spewing words. The secret documents are probably easier to prosecute but you can see the huge delay one Trump appointed judge was able to cause.

  44. says

    @36 Your description of TFG as “shitbrindle” orange brought back memories. I only remember hearing the term from my late father, born in 1920 in rural Idaho. He used it to describe the color the landlord painted the house we lived in when I was a teenager, shitbrindle brown.

  45. silvrhalide says

    @37 The USA is a 246 year old experiment in representative democracy, one that hasn’t failed yet. We’ve come close, on several occasions, far closer than sane people would be comfortable with, but we haven’t failed yet. Not yet. Like the Nuremberg trials, the 2000 US election was the tribute that power paid to democracy and the rule of law. Not as democratic as one would wish–everyone who wanted to vote could, but the Supreme Court got to vote twice and they voted straight down party lines. I respect none of them.
    BUT
    the US held together as a nation. It did not dissolve into civil riots, halfassed militia groups setting up minor fiefdoms/gang territories or civil war. And yes, the rest of the world watched in awe, partially because I’m sure some of them were thinking the US was about to go down in flames and partially because we are the sole remaining superpower with massive nuclear capability and a war machine that dwarfs something like the next 10 largest nations and nobody knew who was going to have a finger on the nuclear button. For perspective, imagine if the Jan. 6th coup had succeeded and some toothless, meth-addled redneck had gotten access to the nuclear codes? Or some opportunistic infection like Marjorie Taylor Greene, who would be Robespierre to Trump’s Louis XIV if 1) she could actually spell Robespierre and 2) had a fucking clue as to who Robespierre was.

    Even during the Jan. 6th attempted coup, we were stronger as a nation than our differences. Republican and Democratic senators worked together as some personal risk to certify the election, so the nation could continue to function as a nation. And while the idea simultaneously terrifies me and nauseates me, truthfully, the heroes of the day might really have been Pence and Dan Quayle. Apparently Pence called Dan Quayle, among others, for advice on the situation and Dan Quayle told him that there was no wiggle room in his position–he did not have the legal authority to overturn or halt the election certification. I’ve always regarded Dan Quayle as a waste of space and oxygen but on Jan. 6th, when democracy was hanging on by a thread, he was the thread.
    And now I want to throw up.

    @38 I said that the world watched in awe at the peaceful transfer of power in the 2000 US election, because it did for the reasons I mentioned above. At no time did I ever state or imply that the rest of the world looks to the US as the best example of democracy. The rest of the world keeps an eye on the US because we are an economic, political and military powerhouse. They keep an eye on the US in exactly the same way people would keep an eye on an 800 lb gorilla that gets kind of testy from time to time. Kindly do not attribute to me words that I never spoke, wrote or implied. And you might want to work on your reading comprehension.

    @43 “There is nothing complicated about this, there is nothing here that will take time to put together, this is not complicated.”
    I imagine everything looks simple to the simpleminded.
    You are aware that you were replying to yourself, right?
    Right?

    @42 Garland is taking his time for the reasons I mentioned in #34. Also, I suspect he does not want to become the next Lanny Breuer.
    https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/lanny-breuer-financial-fraud-has-not-gone-unpunished/
    Lanny Breuer used to be the assistant AG but he was lazy, sloppy and ineffectual in prosecuting the criminal causes of the 2008 financial meltdown caused by the massive failure of the mortgage-backed securities and got kicked. He’ll never have another government position again. Sure, he’s in private practice now but he’s also a joke in jurisprudence circles. He just kept whining about how hard it was to bring cases against the really big players in the financial meltdown, that it was impossible to bring cases against the really big players.
    Then private law firms hired by bond holders for the mortgage-backed securities went after the companies that spewed the toxic mortgage-backed securities all over the financial landscape and won. The cases were civil, not criminal but Breuer’s replacement just quietly followed along behind the civil trials, scooping up testimony that became a matter of public record as part of the civil trials and then used that information and testimony to bring criminal proceedings against the mortgage-backed securities firms and individual employees.
    I don’t think that Garland is dumb enough to make the same mistake that Breuer did.

    @48 My grandfather was a WWII vet (Navy, Pacific theater) and a survivor of the Great Depression. Grandpa had a lot of colorful words and phrases for a lot of things. Including that term.
    And really… streaky orange spray tan; pouchy, pink, piggy eyes, all topped with an improbable swirl of rancid nuclear-orange hair… sure, sure, sit there and tell me that “shitbrindle orange turd” doesn’t describe Dolt 45’s appearance to the nth degree.

    @1, 5, 43

  46. Jazzlet says

    silvrhalide @49

    I said that the world watched in awe at the peaceful transfer of power in the 2000 US election, because it did for the reasons I mentioned above. At no time did I ever state or imply that the rest of the world looks to the US as the best example of democracy.

    1/ Most of the world did not look on in awe, for any reason at all.
    2/ I agree with others interpretation of your words. Consider the possibility that if several people misunderstand what you wrote it might be that you were unclear.

  47. tuatara says

    So, we watched in awe as the USA did not slip into some post-democracy chaos because of a(nother) close election eh? Not likely mate.

    Awe is defined as a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear of wonder.

    Maybe some of us wondered why the descent into chaos hadn’t happened already. Some may have wondered how you could operate an effective democracy in a two-party system where elections are decided by that shitty undemocratic electoral college system of yours. But it doesn’t require the use of a microscope to see that you barely operate at all, seeming only to agree on how much more to spend on your massive arsenal of scary sticks.

    So that is the wonder and fear covered.

    But awe? Na, not me, nor anyone that I know. As a non USAian I don’t think the USA is all that great to be honest. In fact, given it’s evident disdain for its own citizens, and how it treats the rest of the world (installing and propping up brutal dictators because it is in the USA’s interest to do so and to hell with the democratic elections that selected other leaders), it is not worth much respect.
    Every country gets the government it deserves (except if the government they get is chosen by the USA against their wishes).

  48. StevoR says

    @42..Dr Sarah :

    @StevoR, #7: There’s a really good detailed explanation by a prosecutor at https://terikanefield.com/all-new-doj-investigation-faqs/ (short answer; because building a case that has no weaknesses or technical errors that a defense lawyer could tear apart takes a great deal of time and is worth doing right). I see there are a couple of really useful comments in this thread as well, at #12 and #38.

    Thanks for that. Its just so frustratingly infuriating especially given the number of plausible criminal charges Trump’s incurred throughout his time campaigning and in office and very likely before too. The USA’s legal system works far too slowly and seems pretty badly flawed to me. Ditto the Aussie one. We certainly have a legal system rather than a Justice one it seems. Really hope the Willam E. Gladstone quote about “Justice delayed is Justice denied” doesn’t end up happening here and Trump eventually gets his metaphorical just desserts – and hopefully dies behind bars serving a life sentence in disgrace.

  49. lasius says

    @49 silvrhalide

    You are right to some degree. I remember in the 2000 election Germany watched in awe. In awe that a candidate with fewer votes was able to win. That was all.

  50. StevoR says

    @ ^ lasius : That has happened in Oz too a few times too. Electorates and safe seats vs marignal ones and ..yeah. Not ideal.

    Democracies? How do they work again?

    Often badly and clearly need improving.

    What improvements would y’all suggest and what alternatives work better?
    Hint : Iceland, Germany, inclusive version of ancient Athens maybe?

  51. KG says

    silverhalide@50,
    Russia is just as well able to destroy civilization as the USA. Would you say we watch Russia’s internal political squabbles “in awe”?

    The USA is a 246 year old experiment in representative democracy

    You might recall that for a considerable time, only white men were able to vote – and initially, by no means all of them; many other countries beat the USA to a reasonable approximation to universal suffrage. And that the USA was also a continental-scale “experiment” in slavery and land theft, which were key to its rise to global power. I’m not picking on the USA – I don’t really have a lot of time for the pieties of the “patriots” of any country, including and indeed particularly my own.

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