Is it time for The Office of Public Prosecutions?

The nation … at least those of us who aren’t drinking Trump’s toxic concoction, is aghast at the breech of protocol in the Department of Justice regarding the Roger Stone case. Our friend Jeff has done some research into the way some other nations have gone about ensuring that the Department of Justice is not influenced by the government, but rather remains independent in order to maintain the rule of law. I hope you’ll take a minute to read Jeff’s piece, for this is something that will affect us all for years, perhaps decades to come. Thanks Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

In the age of Trumpism, it’s time to look how other countries ensure an independent Justice Department

During the Trump era, it’s rare that I agree with anything Alan Dershowitz says. The 81-year-old ‘TV’ lawyer has gone off the deep end it seems, especially when you consider his ridiculous performance during the recent impeachment trial.

But once in a while, he gets it right. A few nights ago on CNN, he was debating his former pupil, Jeffrey Toobin, concerning the recent intervention of Bill Barr into Roger Stone’s sentencing recommendation from federal prosecutors. Dershowitz, of course, first sided with Trump on the issue, saying that he did have the ‘legal’ right to intervene in that particular case. There was nothing in the law that says he couldn’t do it.

But then he also explained that it wasn’t right for him to do so. Because of the long understood norms and…

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Hail To The King

Our friend Jeff from On the Fence Voters has echoed my own sentiments, and most likely those of every sensible person in this nation tonight. I would suggest that, rather than watch a lying, cheating criminal stand before the House tonight and tell more lies to the people, you read Jeff’s very heartfelt post. He speaks the truth and with genuine passion. Thank you, Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

So let it be written. So let it be done. Thanks to the Republican Party, our Constitution is now under the control of a king. While his title is still the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump assumed the throne last week, his scepter carried by the likes of Mitch McConnell and Lindsay Graham.

The total capitulation, which we knew was in the works based on McConnell’s pledged allegiance to the White House before the impeachment trial began, climaxed when the vote to hear from additional witnesses failed by a mostly partisan 51-49 margin. We could have heard from John Bolton, Mick Mulvaney, or others who had first-hand knowledge of the President’s scheme.

Instead, we got words of wisdom from disgraced Baylor University Chancellor Ken Starr. Remember him? He’s the guy who couldn’t wait to impeach President Bill Clinton for lying about a sex act but lectured the…

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Bastards

Filosofa is growling tonight … Filosofa’s blood pressure is likely through the roof tonight … Filosofa needs to rant tonight.  But first, one kudos …


The courage of her convictions …

Whatever else you may think of Senator (and presidential hopeful) Elizabeth Warren, you’ve gotta love the woman’s courage, her chutzpah, as my grandmother would have said.  Yesterday, while the questioning portion of the impeachment trial was ongoing, and senators/jurors were sending their questions, rather like passing notes in high school, to Chief Justice John Roberts to read, Senator Warren submitted one of her own …

“Does the fact that the chief justice is presiding over an impeachment trial in which Republican senators have thus far refused to allow witnesses or evidence contribute to the loss of legitimacy of the chief justice, the Supreme Court and the Constitution?”

elizabeth-warrenThe shock at her audacity was palpable in the chamber.  As Republicans grow increasingly confident that they have the votes to block calling new witnesses and evidence, Democrats have turned to Chief Justice Roberts as a potential savior for their cause: If there is a tie, it could fall to the chief justice to decide whether to break it.  I think Senator Warren’s question was a pointed reminder to Chief Justice Roberts that he is expected to be ‘fair and impartial’.  Let’s hope it works!  Meanwhile, either way, I give Senator Warren high fives and thumbs up for her courage and tenacity.


Meanwhile, back at the ranch …

It might interest you to know that at least two of Trump’s lawyers, Ken Starr and Robert Ray, have donated mega-bucks to … wait for it … Senate Majority Leader and ignominious tortoise … Mitch McConnell!  So … what a shocker, eh?  In July 2019 alone, Starr gave $2,800 to Moscow Mitch, and in September 2019, Ray gave him $5,600.  Not huge sums, relatively, but enough to ensure he would do all in his power to protect a rogue president?  Maybe.  It was only a month or so after that Mitchie announced he would be in “total coordination with the White House counsel’s office and the people who are representing the president in the well of the Senate.”

Trump’s personal attorney Jay Sekulow has contributed to multiple Republican senators, as have White House counsel Pat Cipollone and deputy White House counsel Patrick Philbin.  Hmmmm … are you starting to smell a rat here?

rat


The bastards …

And this just in, as I am writing tonight …

Sen. Lamar Alexander to oppose new witnesses in trial, signaling vote likely to be defeated

lamar-alexanderSon of a bitch!  I hope your dog bites your leg, it gets infected by Tibetan fleas, and you die a slow and painful death, Lamar!  You have single-handedly ensured that we are now officially a nation run by a cruel, maniacal dictator.

What happened to the “5-10” republicans who, upon hearing of Lev Parnas’ statements and John Bolton’s pending book, claimed they had decided we need to hear witness testimony???  Who threatened them and with what?  Did their cojones shrivel up?For those of my readers who are rolling your eyes right about now, thinking, “Filosofa’s done gone and lost her marbles”, let me ask you to ponder something.

The ignoble Alan Dershowitz in his defense of Trump on Wednesday claimed that if a politician, say the president, acts illegally, but because he believes his actions are in the best interest of the nation, then it is okay … he can do that without being called to account.  Once Trump is acquitted, most likely later today, he will gloat … he will be so emboldened that he will push the limits of his power even further than before.

On November 3rd, we are to have an election … an election that we are hoping will replace not only the president, but certain assholes in Congress such as Jim Jordan, Warren Davidson, Lindsey Graham, and most notably Mitchell McConnell.  So … what happens if Trump decides … in all his “great and unmatched wisdom” … to cancel the November 3rd election because he claims to believe it is in the best interest of the nation?

Can’t happen, you say?  Oh ho ho ho ho ho … it couldn’t happen that a presidential candidate could buy an election … until Trump did just that.  It couldn’t happen that a president would defy every law on the books, lock kids in cages, write executive orders to destroy the environment, and assassinate a foreign general … until it did happen.  Between Attorney General Barr saying that Trump is above the law, cannot be charged with a crime as long as his fat ass sits in the Oval Office, and now Alan Dershowitz claiming that Trump can do anything, so long as he claims to believe it is in the “best interest of the country”, a dictator has been created … a monster such as this nation has never seen before.  Thought Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin were bad?  Wait for it.impeach-8


And now, I bid you buenas noches … sleep well, if you can, for I doubt I will.

Cartoon of Woman Lying in Bed and Unable to Sleep Because of Insomnia

Another WTF Moment!

A few days ago, my laptop crashed.  I was able to resuscitate it, but the Bluetooth was completely dead, the pinned tabs on my browser were gone, and a few other minor issues.  I’ve been nursing BD (Baby Dell) along for quite a while now, and I’ve known it was inevitable that soon I would need a new one.  So, I bit the bullet and ordered one on Sunday night.  It was delivered today.  Sigh.  I will bond with it eventually, but first off it weighs twice as much as BD, so it has already knocked a cup of coffee and an ashtray to the floor as I tried to pick it up with one hand and couldn’t.  And, of course, I have spent the better part of my day today loading software, connecting to the internet, copying files only to lose them, installing a wireless mouse and disabling the touchpad, and various other things.  Long story short, this is going to be a short post this morning, for I have a myriad of things I must get done before I can go to bed and I’m exhausted.  But, one thing caught my eye today that I simply could not let slide …

In essence, Trump’s team of lawyers argued yesterday in defense of Trump’s phone call on July 25th that sought to trade U.S. aid to the Ukraine for the Ukraine’s public announcement that they were investigating Trump’s nemesis, Joe Biden, in order to help Trump’s bid for re-election.  Their defense?  That anything Trump did to aid in his re-election was in the best interest of the nation and therefore not impeachable.  Mr. Dershowitz’ exact words were …

dershowitz“Every public official that I know believes that his election is in the public interest. And mostly, you’re right. Your election is in the public interest. And if a president does something, which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment. . . .

The house managers . . . never allege that it was based on pure financial reasons. It would be a much harder case if a hypothetical president of the United States said to a hypothetical leader of a foreign country, ‘Unless you build a hotel with my name on it and unless you give me a million-dollar kickback, I will withhold the funds.’

That’s an easy case. That’s purely corrupt and in the purely private interest.

But a complex middle case is: ‘I want to be elected. I think I’m a great president. I think I’m the greatest president there ever was. And if I’m not elected, the national interest will suffer greatly.’ That cannot be an impeachable offense.”

SAY WHAT???

Excuse me, Messrs. Philbin and Dershowitz, but may I offer some clarification that you legal beagles apparently lack?

FIRST … Mr. Trump is the worst president, bar none, this nation has ever had.  He is a danger to our Constitutional foundation, he is a danger to the 1st Amendment right to a free press, to free speech, and to freedom of religion.  He poses a danger to the entire planet with his ignorant stance and policies on climate change, wildlife preservation, lethal chemicals and more.  His re-election is in NO WAY in the best interest of this nation!

SECOND … it is up to We the People to decide who should be our next president.  Election tampering is what put us in this terrible situation in the first place, and now you’re saying that it is perfectly fine for Mr. Trump to do whatever he damn well pleases to give him better odds on November 3rd, and that he cannot be held accountable for election tampering, manipulation, etc.

THIRD … You apparently fail to understand the precedent you set with your inane defense!  It is bad enough that somebody along the way said a sitting president cannot be charged with a crime, which is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard … or rather, it was until today!  So, from this point forward, whatever a president does to keep his seat in the Oval Office is okay with you jerks?  Well, guess what?  If your supposition is allowed to stand, then you just signed the death warrant for the United States of America, for by 2024, Donald Trump will have declared himself to be the dictator of the nation and you will have handed him the keys to the castle.

Whew … I had to take a short break after that tirade, for I was out of breath from the typing.  Folks, we have heard more ridiculous bullshit in the past six months out of Trump & Co, than I have heard in the entire 68 years before.  We cannot let this creepshow continue … and yet … how do we stop it?  I’m not sure, but I am planning to draft a letter outlining my three points above and send it to each and every republican senator later today.  And then, I think I’ll go out and break the law … since there is no longer any law and justice, why … I can do anything I please, right?  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

A Few Mini-Rants …

I am growling today.  Every headline I read raises my hackles and makes me wish I had never heard of the United States, let alone have to live here.  Typically, I blame 90% of it on Donald Trump, and certainly he deserves the lion share, but I also have to blame the blind 40% of this nation that still … STILL … after the corruption, the childish temper tantrums, the shredding of the Constitution and the ill will he’s brought from our allies … they STILL effing love him!  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr …


Ditch the veggies – give the kids burgers instead!

Donald Trump’s main mission in life, it would seem, is to attempt to erase President Obama from the annals of history.  It must be miserable to be so jealous of one man.  Granted, Obama was far wiser, much better looking, had integrity, dignity, spoke well, and had a genuinely beautiful family … all those things that Trump lacks.  But, his envy is costing us in so many ways.  First, there was the rollback of all the environmental regulations that had been put in place during Obama’s tenure to try to do our part to combat climate change.  Then, there was the rollback of law enforcement oversight to try to better screen and train law enforcement officers as we hoped to reduce the tragic shootings by police of unarmed black men.  Then there was the utterly ludicrous pulling out of the Paris Accords and the terrible decision to leave our allies holding the bag on the Iran nuclear deal.  And all for one reason and one reason only:  because he is jealous of President Obama.  But this latest …

You may remember that Michelle Obama’s key initiative during her time as First Lady was fighting childhood obesity and providing better nutrition in school meals.  A worthy endeavour, indeed.  Well, that’s the latest thing being rolled back.  Yes, pick your jaws up off the floor, but the USDA Deputy Under Secretary Brandon Lipps proposed new rules for the Food and Nutrition Service that would allow schools to cut the amount of vegetables and fruits required at lunch and breakfasts while giving them license to sell more pizza, burgers and fries to students.

Why, you ask?  Well, the gobblety-gook explanation Mr. Lipps gave was something about having to provide students with two bananas to meet dietary guidelines.  Okay … sooooo … bananas are cheap … what’s the problem?  Well, the real problem is that it was under Obama that we began taking school nutrition seriously, and both Obamas were instrumental in providing more healthy foods and less fat to kids in school.  Can’t have that now, can we.

Another likely reason is the potato lobby that has been pushing for this change, and that the potato industry was behind a change that happened quietly last March making it easier to substitute potatoes for some fruit in weekly breakfast menus.  Once again, corporate profit over the well-being of people.  Sigh.


Senator Martha McSally, bitch extraordinaire

The incident in and of itself was bad enough.  A CNN reporter, Manu Raju, asked Senator McSally a legitimate question …

Raju: Senator McSally, should the Senate consider new evidence as part of the impeachment trial?

McSally: You’re a liberal hack. I’m not talking to you.

Raju: You’re not going to comment, Senator?

McSally: You’re a liberal hack, buddy.

Whoa!  McSally is quite a step down from her predecessor, the late Senator John McCain.  McCain once interjected when, at a campaign event while he was running against Barack Obama, a fan was being critical of Obama, calling him an “Arab” among other things.  McCain did not let the woman finish, but took the microphone from her and said, “No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man, citizen, that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues, and that’s what this campaign issue is all about.”  And here is his successor calling a reporter a ‘liberal hack’ simply because he asked a very valid question.  Yes, that would have been bad enough, but …

McSally was so proud of her behaviour that she put a video of the incident on Twitter.  And, McSally’s re-election campaign is already using the incident as a fund-raising tool!

McSally-tweet

Now, McSally faces re-election later this year, as she was only appointed to finish the term vacated by reason of John McCain’s death.  She ran for the other Senate seat from Arizona in 2018, but lost to Kyrsten Sinema.  And, she wasn’t even Governor Doug Ducey’s first choice to fill McCain’s seat … he initially chose Jon Kyl, but Kyl resigned due to health concerns.  With such low values as she has shown, I don’t care if it’s Moe from the Three Stooges running against her, I hope she loses big-time.  Where is the decency in politics today???  Oh … I guess she’s just following this example …Trump-mocking-reporter


A great bunch of people … NOT!

Yesterday, Trump announced that Alan Dershowitz; Ken Starr, the independent counsel during President Bill Clinton’s impeachment trial; former Florida attorney general Pam Bondi; as well as  Robert Ray, who succeeded Starr at the Office of the Independent Counsel during the Clinton administration; and Jane Raskin, who helped defend Trump during the Mueller probe, would join White House counsel Pat Cipollone and Trump’s personal attorney Jay Sekulow in defending the president on the Senate floor.

I don’t know much about some of them, but let me share with you what I do know.  For one thing, Dershowitz, Starr, and Ray have made roughly 300 appearances on Fox News in the past year, which should tell you something about their integrity right there.

Ken Starr was named the 14th president of Baylor University in Waco in 2010 and chancellor in 2013. After the mishandling of campus sexual assault allegations, he was ousted as president in 2016 and resigned as chancellor and law professor shortly after, cutting all ties with the university.

Alan Dershowitz defended Trump’s ol’ buddy Jeffrey Epstein in his sex abuse cases, and was himself accused by no less than three women.

Pam Bondi was Florida State Attorney General back in 2013 when her office was investigating the now-defunct Trump University on charges of fraud.  Donald Trump wrote a check for $25,000 to Bondi’s re-election campaign and suddenly there was no longer an investigation.

So, Trump has a fine, upstanding legal team.  Doesn’t matter, does it, since the jury reached their decision before there was even a case to try.  Welcome to the tinpot dictatorship of America.


I shall now retire to my dark tower to growl in private and practice howling at the moon.  Have a fine weekend, if you can.

Send Kids To Prison For Life, But Let George Zimmerman Go Free???

  • On July 13, 2013, a jury returned a ‘not guilty’ verdict in the trial of George Zimmerman, the man who shot and killed a young, unarmed African-American named Trayvon Martin. The prosecutor, Angela Corey, had failed to sufficiently prove her case after charging Zimmerman with second-degree murder.  Many of us across the nation were shocked by the verdict, and yet many said that had Corey charged Zimmerman with a lesser charge, the case would likely have ended differently.  Even seasoned lawyers like Christopher Darden, Alan Dershowitz, and Dan Abrams agreed that based on the charge, the jury could reach no other conclusion, but that Corey ‘over-charged’ the defendant, based on the evidence she had, and thus George Zimmerman roams the earth a free man today.
  • corey-3.jpgThen there was the case of young Cristian Fernandez. In 2012, Cristian was 12 years old and had already suffered a lifetime of parental neglect. When he was 2, passers-by found him naked, dirty, and alone in a parking lot. When Cristian was 11, his stepfather shot himself in the head after he learned the police planned to arrest him on charges of beating Cristian. Then on March 14th, 2011, Cristian’s mother, Biannela Susana, left Cristian in charge of his 2-year-old half-brother, David.  Sometime later, Cristian called his mother to come home, as he said David was hurt.  When Biannela arrived home, she found young David unconscious.  Yet, instead of calling 911, she spent the next eight hours trolling the internet for symptoms of concussion. Eventually she drove the child to the hospital where two days later he died of his injuries.  The mother pled guilty to negligent manslaughter and faces up to 30 years in prison. Young Cristian was arrested and charged by none other than State Prosecutor Angela Corey with one count of first-degree murder.  A twelve-year-old child.  “She takes the position if a child commits an adult crime, then she’s going to charge him as an adult,” said one lawyer close to the prosecutor.  Fortunately, young Cristian’s case caught the public eye and five local law firms working pro bono intervened on Cristian’s behalf, eventually allowing him to plead to manslaughter as a juvenile, which will allow him to be released on his 19th birthday in 2018.  If Ms. Corey had her way, he would have been sentenced to life-without-parole.  At age twelve. Cristian, by the way, is African-American.
  • In July 2010, after Rico Gray saw texts on his wife’s phone, he confronted her in a rage and threatened her. Marissa Alexander, an African-American mother of three, used her gun to fire a warning shot into the ceiling to scare off her husband. Nobody was hit, injured, or killed. Alexander, who had no criminal record, was arrested and sentenced to 20 years in prison for defending herself. The prosecutor was none other than Angela Corey.  Alexander’s husband, Rico Gray, said, “I got five baby mammas, and I [hit] every last one of them except for one.” Gray admitted in his deposition there had been “about four or five” incidents of domestic violence with Alexander prior to the shooting incident, including when he “pushed her back and she fell in the bathtub and she hit her head.” He said that she went to the hospital and he went to jail for that. In describing his abuse of another woman he said, “She just wouldn’t shut up.” So he hit her in the mouth. Asked about another woman he had a relationship with, Gray said, “She got hit in the mouth, same thing.” At the time of the incident, Gray admits he had her pinned in the bathroom, was screaming and cursing at her and even threatened to have her killed.  Yet, Ms. Alexander was the one sentenced to a 20-year prison term. Alexander was released on January 27, 2015, under a plea deal that capped her sentence to the three years she had already served.

The common thread here is that those prosecuted were all African-Americans, were all well over-charged for their transgressions, and the prosecutor in all cases was Angela Corey, who has earned the distinction of being called the ‘Lock-’Em-Up Prosecutor’ and the ‘ Cruelest Prosecutor in America’.

corey-2Corey is reported to have a very thin skin and does not handle criticism well (remind you of anybody else?).  When Sandy D’Alemberte, a former president of the American Bar Association, a former president of Florida State University and a well-respected law professor was critical of how Corey handled the Cristian Fernandez case and of her appointment to head up the investigation into the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, saying “I can’t imagine a worse choice for a prosecutor,” Corey filed a public records request with FSU seeking all emails, text messages and phone messages involving D’Alemberte related to Fernandez. When Alan M. Derschowitz, the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, also criticized Corey’s handling of the Martin case, Corey went into a “40-minute rant, during which she threatened to sue Harvard Law School, to try to get me disbarred by the Bar Association and to file charges against me for libel and slander.” And when David Sutter of the Southern Poverty Law Center said on a local radio program that Fernandez should be in the juvenile system instead of adult court, Corey called the center’s director and launched into a tirade.

Corey’s jurisdiction sends more young people charged as adults to jail than any other one in the state, and her commitment rate of youth to detention centers is twice the state average. She also holds the record of winning the death penalty in a record 24 cases in her eight years in office, giving her the highest per capita death sentence rate in the nation. Duval County is 30 percent black; 80% of those who have received the death penalty are black. A bit of disparity there, don’t you think?

I am pleased to tell you that on Tuesday, Angela Corey lost the Republican primary for 4th circuit judicial state attorney by a large margin (64% to 24%) to Melissa Nelson, a corporate lawyer and former prosecutor.  Public opinion seems to be one of relief, especially among the African-American community. The media seems happy.  No word yet on any response from Ms. Corey.  The result of this primary make me hopeful that I was right way back when I said that at the end of the day, the American voters would exhibit some good sense.  Fingers crossed for November.