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  • December 18, 2016 09:45:26 AM
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Broken Laughter is an occasional blog by a middle aged Midwesterner. It will include posts and articles about politics, current events, arts, and anything else that the Broken Laughter editor chooses to post.

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Trump Control Of Judicial Branch Complete?

You may remember this. In late September 2017, according to CNN, “Trump administration lawyers are demanding the private account information of potentially thousands of Facebook users in three separate search warrants served on the social media giant, according to court documents obtained by CNN. “The warrants specifically target the accounts of three Facebook users who are described by their attorneys… Read more The post Trump Control Of Judicial Branch Complete? appeared first on...

You may remember this. In late September 2017, according to CNN, “Trump administration lawyers are demanding the private account information of potentially thousands of Facebook users in three separate search warrants served on the social media giant, according to court documents obtained by CNN.

“The warrants specifically target the accounts of three Facebook users who are described by their attorneys as ‘anti-administration activists who have spoken out at organized events, and who are generally very critical of this administration’s policies.’ ”

In the past, it used to be possible to fight police state tactics like this request in court and win. That was then.

However, Trump has packed appellate courts with dozens of his own yes-men appointees. He managed this court-packing because the GOP-majority legislature deliberately did not take action on appellate appointments made by President Obama. 

Now that Trump has appointed two justices, he has a SCOTUS majority that will rule however he wants. The Judicial branch will no longer serve as any kind of check on Executive Branch power. 

We already know that the GOP majority in the House and Senate will do whatever Trump wants. The Legislative branch has demonstrated this repeatedly. A very recent example of this is its confirming Kavanaugh, someone who should have been rejected for very good cause before anyone other than the Judiciary Committee ever heard of Christine Blasey-Ford.

Remember, Trump cannot name the three branches of American government correctly. However, he owns all of them.

 

The post Trump Control Of Judicial Branch Complete? appeared first on Broken Laughter.


Why The Senate Should Not Have Confirmed Kavanaugh

The opening remarks of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, at his confirmation hearing on Thursday, September 26, contained the following paragraphs, in quotation marks. “Less than two weeks ago, Dr. Ford publicly accused me of committing wrongdoing at an event more than 36 years ago when we were both in high school. I denied the allegation immediately, categorically and unequivocally. All four… Read more The post Why The Senate Should Not Have Confirmed Kavanaugh appeared first on Broken...

The opening remarks of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, at his confirmation hearing on Thursday, September 26, contained the following paragraphs, in quotation marks.

“Less than two weeks ago, Dr. Ford publicly accused me of committing wrongdoing at an event more than 36 years ago when we were both in high school. I denied the allegation immediately, categorically and unequivocally. All four people allegedly at the event, including Dr. Ford’s longtime friend, Ms. Keyser, have said they recall no such event. Her longtime friend, Ms. Keyser, said under penalty of felony that she does not know me and does not believe she ever saw me at a party ever. Here’s the quote from Ms. Keyser’s attorney’s letter. “Simply put, Ms. Keyser does not know Mr. Kavanaugh and she has no recollection of ever being at a party or gathering where he was present with or without Dr. Ford.” Think about that fact.”

Lack of memory from four people does not prove innocence. Kavanaugh wanted to lead Senators to think otherwise. None of the alleged party attendees ― Mark Judge, Leland Keyser and P.J. Smyth ― ever refuted anything Blasey claimed. They simply said they could not remember attending the party Blasey-Ford referred to.

Many people have argued that even if the allegation against Kavanaugh were true, it should not prevent him from joining the Supreme Court. This is absurd on its face.

If “it happened long ago” absolves someone of guilt or consequences, then he could have committed more serious crimes and people would argue that he should still be placed on the Court “because his shooting and paralyzing an innocent woman walking outside his window” happened 36 years ago. Or “because his stealing $600,000  from a law client” happened 36 years ago.

“The day after the allegation appeared, I told this committee that I wanted a hearing as soon as possible to clear my name. I demanded a hearing for the very next day. Unfortunately, it took the committee 10 days to get to this hearing. In those 10 long days, as was predictable and as I predicted, my family and my name have been totally and permanently destroyed by vicious and false additional accusations. The 10-day delay has been harmful to me and my family, to the Supreme Court and to the country. When this allegation first arose, I welcomed any kind of investigation. Senate, F.B.I. or otherwise. The committee now has conducted a thorough investigation, and I’ve cooperated fully.“

There was no FBI investigation before the second Senate hearing. Unfortunately, there has been no FBI investigation to date. After the second Senate hearing on Sept. 26, the White House provided the names of 10 people the FBI could interview. The White House also specified which topics the FBI could and could not discuss with the 10 people it specified.

To be clear, this was not an FBI investigation. Anyone who tries to say that there has been an FBI investigation is lying.

“I will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process. You have tried hard. You’ve given it your all. No one can question your efforts. Your coordinated and well-funded efforts to destroy my good name and destroy my family will not drag me out. The vile threats of violence against my family will not drive me out. You may defeat me in the final vote, but you’ll never get me to quit. Never.”

The words above are not the words of someone who sees himself in a job interview and selection process. These are not the words of someone who believes he should have to win people over through balanced rhetoric and thoughtful impartiality.

These are the words of a bitter, suspicious and paranoid person.

“This whole two-week effort has been a calculated and orchestrated political hit, fueled with apparent pent-up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election, fear that has been unfairly stoked about my judicial record, revenge on behalf of the Clintons and millions of dollars in money from outside left-wing opposition groups.”

He could not be more wrong. Those of us who are opposed to him base that opposition on his lack of consistency and his unwillingness to answer questions during his first confirmation hearing.

On inconsistency: when he worked for Ken Starr he believes that a sitting President (then Democratic President Bill Clinton) could be investigated, indicted and prosecuted for criminal acts while in office.

However, now that he has been nominated to the SCOTUS by Trump, he believes that a sitting president (Trump) should not be investigated, indicted or prosecuted while in office because he is too busy being president.

Although it is obvious that Trump is completely overwhelmed, incompetent and incapable of serving responsibly in the role of president, his limitations and deficiencies of knowledge, skill and ability should not prevent him from being investigated, and indicted or prosecuted while in office.

Many of us are also extremely bothered by lies he told during his first confirmation hearing.

Someone who lies does not deserve a seat on the highest court in the United States. It is that simple.

“This is a circus. The consequences will extend long past my nomination. The consequences will be with us for decades. This grotesque and coordinated character assassination will dissuade confident and good people of all political persuasions from serving our country. And as we all know in the United States political system of the early 2000s, what goes around comes around.“

Kavanaugh appears to be vowing revenge on those who he thinks have done him wrong — “what goes around comes around.”  It is awful that, now that he has been confirmed, he will issue SCOTUS opinions filled with vengeful partisan fervor.

The post Why The Senate Should Not Have Confirmed Kavanaugh appeared first on Broken Laughter.


Using Christine Blasey-Ford?

Some members of the GOP have said that Democrats are using Christine Blasey-Ford to advance a two-pronged political agenda. Specifically, these folks have insisted that Democrats want to use Blasey-Ford 1) To harm Trump and 2) To reduce the number of Republicans in the House and Senate after the November 2018 midterms. Those members of the GOP who have said… Read more The post Using Christine Blasey-Ford? appeared first on Broken...

Some members of the GOP have said that Democrats are using Christine Blasey-Ford to advance a two-pronged political agenda.

Specifically, these folks have insisted that Democrats want to use Blasey-Ford 1) To harm Trump and 2) To reduce the number of Republicans in the House and Senate after the November 2018 midterms.

Those members of the GOP who have said this argue — some very strenuously — that using people for political purposes is a bad thing.

However, the people who’ve claimed this are the same people who want to use Brett Kavanaugh to advance a two-pronged political agenda: 1) To protect Trump from investigation, indictment or prosecution for a wide variety of crimes and 2) To take away a woman’s right to control what happens to her own body by making safe abortion illegal. 

Hypocritically ironic, isn’t it?

   

The post Using Christine Blasey-Ford? appeared first on Broken Laughter.


Would You Hire Judge Kavanaugh?

Brett Kavanaugh is currently Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Recently, Kavanaugh has been interviewing for a position as a Justice on the US Supreme Court.  Would you hire someone who, during his interview, responded to questions with questions turned back on interviewers, demonstrated profound anger, cried, and shouted over interviewers who… Read more The post Would You Hire Judge Kavanaugh? appeared first on Broken...

Brett Kavanaugh is currently Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Recently, Kavanaugh has been interviewing for a position as a Justice on the US Supreme Court. 

Would you hire someone who, during his interview, responded to questions with questions turned back on interviewers, demonstrated profound anger, cried, and shouted over interviewers who asked him questions? Kavanaugh did these things at last Thursday’s session in the Senate.

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the Comments box.

The post Would You Hire Judge Kavanaugh? appeared first on Broken Laughter.


Trump Won’t Talk To Mueller

On September 6, 2018, Rudy Giuliani announced that Trump will not respond to any questions about obstruction of justice from Robert Mueller. He won’t respond in writing or any other way. It’s unlikely that Mueller will need to talk to Trump. Mueller likely has all the evidence he needs to indict Trump for conspiracy and/ or other crimes. If Trump… Read more The post Trump Won’t Talk To Mueller appeared first on Broken...

On September 6, 2018, Rudy Giuliani announced that Trump will not respond to any questions about obstruction of justice from Robert Mueller. He won’t respond in writing or any other way.

It’s unlikely that Mueller will need to talk to Trump. Mueller likely has all the evidence he needs to indict Trump for conspiracy and/ or other crimes.

If Trump were not guilty of crimes, he would not have spent the last several months yammering incessantly about a “witch hunt,” which has so far resulted in more than 20 people indicted, convicted, and pleading guilty to felonies, not to mention those who are cooperating with investigators to avoid prosecution.

He also would not have fought and negotiated for months with the Mueller team, ultimately unwilling to sit down for an interview with the Mueller team.

His behavior is not that of an innocent person.

Once the rest of the indictments come down, the connections between what has already been revealed and what has not yet will become clear to all of us.

Why do I think this? Let’s remember a few things.

Robert Mueller has already secured indictments and guilty pleas and convictions from more than 20 people tied to the Donald Trump campaign. No one leaked any of that evidence. Mueller is famous for running very tight investigations. His team has spent most of its time following the money. Nearly all of the indictments and the prosecution of Manafort have been based on following financial transactions.

There was a period of time when Donald Trump could not borrow from American banks. Those banks would not do business with him. Also, very few European banks would do business with him. So he turned to Russian oligarchs for financing.

The problem is that a lot of those Russian oligarchs had and have ties to organized crime. So, oligarchs likely invested organized crime proceeds from Russia in Trump Organization real estate projects (with his knowledge). The funds sloshed around inside the Trump Organization washing machine for a while and then those funds came out “clean.”

Since Trump funded much of his own campaign, it’s very likely that his campaign was funded at least in part by his own funds, those dollars very likely included foreign organized crime proceeds. That is illegal.

The post Trump Won’t Talk To Mueller appeared first on Broken Laughter.


We Know Outcomes Of Russian Election Interference

People who claim that Russian election interference had no impact on U.S. election outcomes are completely wrong.  Watch this and remember what Hillary Clinton told us 8 days before the U.S. elections of 2016. We experienced rampant Russian data theft and direct interference in the U.S. elections held on Nov. 8, 2016.  This is the point: We know the outcomes… Read more The post We Know Outcomes Of Russian Election Interference appeared first on Broken...

People who claim that Russian election interference had no impact on U.S. election outcomes are completely wrong. 

Watch this and remember what Hillary Clinton told us 8 days before the U.S. elections of 2016.

We experienced rampant Russian data theft and direct interference in the U.S. elections held on Nov. 8, 2016. 

This is the point:

We know the outcomes of U.S. elections with Russian interference because we live with those outcomes every day.

We will never know the outcomes of U.S. elections of 2016 without Russian interference.

 

The post We Know Outcomes Of Russian Election Interference appeared first on Broken Laughter.


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