Patterico's Pontifications

10/8/2008

College Student Indicted in Palin Email Hacking (Updated)

Filed under: 2008 Election,Crime — DRJ @ 8:16 am



[Guest post by DRJ]

A University of Tennessee student, the son of a State Democratic lawmaker, has been indicted in connection with the hacking of Sarah Palin’s online email account:

“David C. Kernell, 20, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Knoxville for intentionally accessing without authorization the e-mail account of Palin, the governor of Alaska and Sen. John McCain’s running mate, according to U.S. Attorney James R. Dedrick.

Dedrick said Kernell, the son of state Rep. Mike Kernell, D-Memphis, turned himself in to federal authorities today for arrest.

He is to be arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge C. Clifford Shirley.”

This was a stupid thing for this young man to do and could impact him for the rest of his life, but it’s hard for me to feel too sorry for him. He made a choice that he immediately regretted, which shows he knew better. And there will undoubtedly be some who will treat him as a hero. His defense fund can’t be too far behind.

UPDATE 1:
Trial has been set for December.

UPDATE 2: Orin Kerr has concerns about the indictment. I’m not sure I agree with Prof. Kerr, although I don’t practice criminal law so this is just my off-the-cuff guess. It seems to me there may be multiple crimes that could be piggy-backed: If the first crime was the unauthorized intrusion into Palin’s email account, perhaps it was done in furtherance of the second crime of revealing the results of that intrusion on the internet.

H/T Instapundit.

— DRJ
— DRJ

156 Responses to “College Student Indicted in Palin Email Hacking (Updated)”

  1. When will this prosecutor be forced to resign?
    Only a racist hate-monger would expect a Democrat to obey the law.

    Perfect Sense (9d1b08)

  2. It’s such an important story, DRJ put her name on it twice! 😉

    Chris (6733a5)

  3. There is something deeper here that is not being said. I have noticed that children of Democrat Office holders are increasingly likely to break the law.

    Look at Cynthia McKinney and her father.

    Look at Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wi and her son, one of 5 convicted of slashing tires and vandalizing vans meant to get out the Republican vote in Milwaukee.

    This cretin, son of a Elected Democrat.

    Even down to a Former Dubuque mayor and his live in grandson who shot and killed a rival.

    Democrats have got to stop preaching lawlessness in their homes.

    PCD (7fe637)

  4. I’ve updated the post regarding the trial setting.

    Chris — Heh. It’s twice as good!

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  5. PCD – In Illinois, they have hereditary family positions and Baracky endorses the system.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  6. He’ll get a fine, and community service; but they should make the felony stick and take away his rights (no voting, no guns, no gov’t job) for the rest of his life. Let him ask pay for a Presidential Pardon in the next Clinton (Chelsie) Administration.

    AOracle (db2f44)

  7. AOracle,

    Kernell will be able to early vote in Ohio. ACORN and the Obama campaign will make it so.

    PCD (7fe637)

  8. “This was a stupid thing for this young man to do”

    Yes, it was.

    “and could impact him for the rest of his life”

    Let’s hope not too much. No one got hurt and the guy’s only 20.

    I predict a deal is made and no trial.

    And my question. What kind of sentence is he facing?

    jharp (2282bb)

  9. 6. Will she have to win a knock-down drag ’em out election vs. Jenna Bush?

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  10. The post so nice, she signed it twice.

    :)

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  11. He made a choice that he immediately regretted

    Were that the case, he wouldn’t have given people the e-mails he found.

    I call BS. He regrets getting caught.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  12. I do understand that the privacy provisions of the 4th. Amendment are a formal restraint on federal and state governments regarding a persons privacy. It does not restrain individuals. I also realize that Sarah Palin is now a “public figure” and, as such, has willingly foregone some privacy privileges in order to run for office. However, the e-mail account in question was a private account, like many of us have, and running for VPOTUS or not, was private unless a warrant be issued.

    The Democrats talk the talk about “privacy”, but in reality they do not walk the walk. This “young man” should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and, if found guilty, sentenced to the maximum.

    Whether the violator of the privacy is a private citizen, or a participant in the game of all’s fair in love,war and politics, the spirit if not the letter of the 4th. Amendment is an important component of America’s traditions. Lobotomize the little bastard!

    C. Norris (c06b47)

  13. I’ve got nothing to hide, but I’d be outraged if someone hacked into my private email – and I’m not even a big deal. Throw the book at this kid. Actions have consequences.

    Tom (1e141b)

  14. It would be interesting to hear Patterico’s opinion as a prosecutor, if he knows enough about the details.

    In one way it is a simple case of a person illegally accessing someone’s private email/computer records.

    In another way it is politically motivated espionage.

    Either way there is both the trial phase convicting of a crime and the sentencing phase assessing appropriate discipline/punishment. (Not telling you folks what you don’t know, I’m just processing out loud- in print.)

    Then, perhaps depending how you look at it, is there a way to “bring maximal good” out of the situation.

    Without speculating on details, it seems to me the aims are:
    1. Communicate this was a significant crime, not a prank like intercepting a note during a class in high school.
    2. Recognize to what degree he realized he did something wrong and us remorseful, vs realizing he was going to get caught and make it as easy as possible.
    3. Use what was meant to do political damage to Palin to be positive.

    Obama, the Dems, and the Dems’ media operatives succeeded in (somehow legally) obtaining privileged documents on Jack Ryan’s divorce, enabling Obama to eliminate (not defeat) his competition for the US Senate. There should be a redeeming side to having your personal stuff snooped in and being found without problems.
    (Not to say I think Ryan did or did not get just treatment, I didn’t follow things that close to have an opinion on that).

    I would spare the “Democrats can’t teach their kids right from wrong stuff”. If anyone has raised teenagers that followed your instructions 100% of the time I want to hear about it (though you are probably lying). And besides, it would be used to bring up Palin’s daughter again, which we already cried foul over.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  15. Comment by AOracle — 10/8/2008 @ 8:43 am

    To clarrify…
    My personal preference is that they throw the book at this spoiled brat;
    but, I don’t think they will, that is why I wrote what I wrote.
    However, that being said, this is a felony, and I think that should stick;
    and he should suffer all of the consequences of having committed a felony.

    AOracle (db2f44)

  16. While the consistency of the liberals attacking liberty bothers me, I tend to think this kid was just being over the top. I think he should be forced to see what the potential ramifications of what he did are. I think he should be forced to look at pictures of all the kids and then be shown some vids of kids who have been harmed by predators. I do think he should get a bit of jail time, if only to help him understand the truth about these “forgotten men” that the dems want to give the vote to. I guess I just think that if the kid can be truly remorseful, it would be awful to ruin his life.

    Carolynp (a200f6)

  17. “In one way it is a simple case of a person illegally accessing someone’s private email/computer records.”

    Maybe so.

    But thanks to George Bush and the republicans the government is allowed to do the same thing whenever and to whomever they choose legally.

    Could never figure the wingers supporting this. And wonder if anyone is now having doubts that it’s going to be Obama wielding that powere now.

    jharp (2282bb)

  18. Should be only one “r” in clarify….Need more coffee!

    AOracle (db2f44)

  19. Comment by Carolynp — 10/8/2008 @ 9:22 am

    His actions were mean-spirited, and had the potential of ruining someone else’s life.
    If he doesn’t do it now, he’ll do it later, for that is the pattern in crimes of this type.
    Throw the book at the little turd!

    AOracle (db2f44)

  20. For the hacking, I would treat it as a kind of minor vandalism, a hundred hours of community service and don’t do it again.

    For revealing the results of the hacking to others, regardless of your intent in doing so, sorry, kid, that’s considerably worse than spreading gossip. I’m not sure I’m happy making it a felony, but that seems to be what The Man requires for such if there was a computer involved, and so it is. Others have had to pay that price for similar “crimes”.

    htom (412a17)

  21. Poor little guy. He was probably desperate for his father’s attention and approval. Gee whiz. I hope [deleted by DRJ for inappropriate content]. (That’s a joke, right?)

    Seriously, I don’t have much sympathy. I think she used the Yahoo account because she couldn’t access the official Dot gov one from her home computer, which is sort of dumb, but understandable. Yes, she should have been more careful. Yes, he should get slapped on the wrist–I say community service and that big fine.

    Kate (908d0e)

  22. C Norris says (#11)
    Lobotomize the little bastard!

    I am scared of you potential fascists. I really am.
    One more reason to never never vote the Neo-cons back to power again.

    Barry Smith (769330)

  23. DRJ, you say that this could impact the young man for life. Is it not at least somewhat ironic that we’re on the verge of electing to the presidency of the United States someone who has bragged, in writing, about his frequent drug use; begun his political campaign in the home of, and maintained a relationship with, an unrepentant domestic terrorist; and frequented a church where “God damn America purchased his home with the assistance of a felon?

    Combine that with Kerry’s slander of the U.S. military in the 1970s, and there doesn’t appear to me to be anything that would, in the minds of a majority of Americans, disqualify anyone from being president any longer.

    Diffus (cb9f4f)

  24. Carolynp(#15) I do think he should get a bit of jail time, if only to help him understand the truth about these “forgotten men” that the dems want to give the vote to.

    If this isn’t racism, what is? dear Carolyn longs for the good old days when n****s and latinos were in their place.

    [EDITED for inappropriate content. — DRJ]

    Barry Smith (769330)

  25. Barry, please detail the logic chain that led from Carolyn’s comment to your conclusion…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  26. Stupid – yes
    Hero – No
    Punishment – hopefully it is appropriately applied based on the case and offender’s criminal history (or lack thereof) and not based on it being Palin who was hacked

    As an aside Kevin Mitnick is a guest speaker at a local cyber symposium here in Louisiana.Kevin Mitnick

    voiceofreason2 (590c85)

  27. Comment by Barry Smith — 10/8/2008 @ 9:28 am

    I think you’re being just as extreme in your assessment. The truth is that Palin’s children could easily have been hurt by this. I’ve worked in torts and liabilities for CPS before. I think the difference between you and I is that you empathize with the kid and I empathize with a parent who has just been told their child was contacted by a stranger who got their phone number from the internet. You may be right that we are not as compassionate as we should be, but I am terrified for what will happen to our nation when folks like you, who have no real concern for the welfare of someone else’s kids, get into power.

    Carolynp (a200f6)

  28. Errr…Mr. Smith, I AM a Latina, just fyi. I suppose my name isn’t sufficiently ethnic for you? I think it’s fair to say that you’re the racist in this interchange.

    Carolynp (a200f6)

  29. C Norris: I agree that this man should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

    That said, if it is true that Gov. Palin was using this private account to conduct state business, then she has a responsibility to the people of Alaska to allow the same level of public access to records of it that would be allowed to records of her state government email account, and there should be penalties imposed on her if she fails to do so.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  30. Comment by Barry Smith — 10/8/2008 @ 9:28 am

    I don’t think Carolyn’s comment was racist at all, unless you consider those locked up in jail on felony charges a separate race.

    Diffus (#14), I’m afraid you may be right, though in the end we avoided electing Kerry and maybe we will still avoid electing Obama.

    As far as being afraid of Neocons doing lobotomies, as Diffus points out, it’s not the neocons that show such evidence of rational thought.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  31. Ever notice that it is always the racist Leftists dropping the n-bomb?

    JD (5f0e11)

  32. PCD, you forgot the biggest example of all — the Kennedys!

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  33. To my Leftist/Progressivist friends….

    I seem to recall that it is horrible beyond belief to wiretap potential terrorists.

    Just make sure that you would think that this is “no big deal” or “the fault of the victim for not using more secure e-mail accounts” if it was Senator Obama’s private e-mail system that had been hacked.

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  34. As for the racist language, it is just more trollery.

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  35. Aphrael – is there any evidence that State business was being conducted? I thought that even the hacker said he found nothing to that effect.

    JD (5f0e11)

  36. I think she used the Yahoo account because she couldn’t access the official Dot gov one from her home computer, which is sort of dumb, but understandable. Yes, she should have been more careful.

    She had a private email account for private business. If she had used an official account for private business, people would be screaming about “misuse of government resources” and about how reckless she was to use something subject to sunshine laws for family matters.

    There was nothing “dumb” or nefarious about it; it was the right thing to do.

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  37. FWIW, Orin Kerr thinks there may be a technical problem with the indictment.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  38. I believe there was a communication from someone in the govt., but it actually seemed to be a personal rather than a work-related subject. But I could be wrong.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  39. JD: I know not; I know that I have heard it alleged, but my time for chasing down the truth behind things I read on the internet is pretty limited and I have to ration it.

    I’m merely noting that (a) if state business is conducted via private email, that should force that private email account to be treated under the same rules that would ordinarily be applied to an official account, and (b) that doesn’t justify a hacker breaking into the account and publishing its contents, so (c) the hacker should be prosecuted.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  40. Maybe the DOJ can make the argument that terrorists are always “on the job”, hence monitoring their communication is reasonable.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  41. That said, if it is true that Gov. Palin was using this private account to conduct state business, then she has a responsibility to the people of Alaska to allow the same level of public access to records of it that would be allowed to records of her state government email account, and there should be penalties imposed on her if she fails to do so.

    “If it were true”. Of course, it’s not true. No one had any evidence it was true before this kid committed his crime, but that didn’t stop people from declaring it true.

    And now, after the kid committed the type of act that had the left screaming about “police states” not too long ago, and uncovered absolutely NO state business in Palin’s personal email account, the left’s line of argument has merely reduced to “if it were true”, as if clear evidence that IT WAS NEVER TRUE were not enough to kill the lie.

    This kid deserves a long, long prison sentence, as an example for others.

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  42. carolynp “forgotten men” that the dems want to give the vote to
    Disenfrachised people who were enfranchised were the African Amerians and the current controversy is about the immigrants among whom latinos dominate. Add the fact that these two communities are over-represented in our jails, the sub-text of Carolyn’s comments are clear. To any neutral observer that is. Agreed not to a bunch of crypto fascists.

    Barry Smith (90633b)

  43. I am scared of you potential fascists. I really am.

    So you were outraged by the words and actions of the people in front of the Denver Mint during the DNC, and by the words of Janeane Garofalo, yes?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  44. Disenfrachised people who were enfranchised were the African Amerians and the current controversy is about the immigrants among whom latinos dominate.

    She was talking about the people in prison, your doorknob.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  45. “I am scared of you potential fascists. I really am.”
    The f-word that always proves someone to be insightful, deep, and well-informed.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  46. Scott – Barry is objectively and demonstrably a racist.

    JD (5f0e11)

  47. Scott, JD, Jack. You have nothing to say but abuse. You cannot answer a single point. I write all this not to vent my spleen at you but to the silent audience reading this. Ah! yes. To influence them. You make my job easy by your puerile interventions.

    Barry Smith (b78401)

  48. Abuse? You refer to people as “potential fascists”, make assumptions that you know what people are thinking and that its a string of gutter level racial epithets, and believe that the burden is on the accused to refute your juvenile charges of racism and you presume to be on some higher plane of intellect and enlightenment? Chutzpah defined.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  49. *rolls his eyes*

    So you have no response to my 10:16am post? Neat.

    We aren’t the party that snuck protesters into your convention, bub. We aren’t the ones calling for the raping of Free Speech via the Fairness Doctrine.

    We don’t throw things at democrat/liberal speakers we don’t agree with.

    These and more are tactics used frequently by parties on the left. I would love to hear you defend these tactics…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  50. Comment by Barry Smith — 10/8/2008 @ 10:29 am

    The silent audience majority will not be influence by your moronic meanderings due to the very nature of those imbecilic thoughts.
    When you speak in contradictions, people immediately discount you as a spokesman for any cause, and lead them to believe that your cause is a false one.
    When you are able to post comments that are cogent, and backed-up by facts, not feelings, then readers will start to take you seriously.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  51. Talk about breaking the law…what about Palin conducting government business on a Yahoo account, instead of the required government e-mail system? That is breaking the law. Just like the Bush/Cheney administration…conducting their nefarious dealings under cover using a private e-mail account, instead of out in the open and on the government e-mail as the law requires. Republicans continuously break the law, then make new rules to cover their criminal conduct…Don’t throw rocks republicans when you live in glass houses. Everyone should obey the law. No special privileges republicans…

    Thsitle Rose (d80344)

  52. Scott, JD, Jack. You have nothing to say but abuse.

    Says the fellow calling those who disagree with him “fascists” simply because they do not see racism in statements that do not involve race.

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  53. “influenced”
    Sorry!

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  54. “Progressives” are always throwing out their perceptions of what they want their foes to be so that can congratulate themselves on swatting down these alleged adversaries in their oh-so-brave quest for “social justice” in which they fashion themselves brave heroes on the vanguard. Good examples include claiming that people to the right of them are actively trying to “keep minorities down” and are naturally thinking in terms of gutter level racist epithets. They also claim themselves judges of people’s “authenticity”.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  55. Barry – You dropped the n-bomb. You beclowned yourself on another thread questioning the authenticity of another commenter. And then you lie and whine when you were called on it. Embrace your bigotry.

    JD (5f0e11)

  56. Comment by Thsitle Rose — 10/8/2008 @ 10:39 am

    Dear, dear, Rose!
    There was no official business being conducted on her personal account.
    This is a discredited meme that, if you were sentient, you would have known to avoid.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  57. Jack Klompus writes. Abuse? You refer to people as “potential fascists”, make assumptions that you know what people are thinking and that its a string of gutter level racial epithets.

    I used the term potential fascist -potential, mind you – for a person who wants to do brain surgery to remove the frontal lobe of a 20 year old boy who committed a crime of hacking into someone else’s mail.
    And pray, what gutter level racial epithets did I use? Please don’t make up things. I know neo-cons have to lie. But don’t be so blatant.

    Barry Smith (c74ba9)

  58. Talk about breaking the law…what about Palin conducting government business on a Yahoo account, instead of the required government e-mail system?

    Never happened. Even the fellow who hijacked her email account admits there was nothing there.

    In fact, this has been repeated multiple times in these comments — there was NOTHING improper in Palin’s use of a private email account — so why do you insist, without providing any contrary evidence, that there was?

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  59. Comment by JD — 10/8/2008 @ 10:42 am

    Either they all work from the same style book, or this is just another name for one of our old favorites.

    It is amazing that they seem to be incapable of original thought, and proper spelling, syntax, and grammar.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  60. Oh yes yes “potential”. That I guess gives you a mulligan on coming right out and throwing the term around. I’d love to hear your extensive research and knowledge on what exactly the fascist movement was about, but that would require you to, you know, have some real substantive insight, instead of puffing your progressive chest out and enjoying your allegedly odorless shit. Get a couple of “neo-cons” in there to fill in the gap though, that’s quite original.

    “If this isn’t racism, what is? dear Carolyn longs for the good old days when niggers and latinos were in their place.

    Comment by Barry Smith — 10/8/2008 @ 9:34 am

    Your own fucking words.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  61. This is a discredited meme that, if you were sentient, you would have known to avoid.

    That seems overly harsh; surely there are sentient people who don’t keep track of the latest state of credit, or discredit, of political memes.

    On that subject, do you have a link to the discrediting? As I said before, I don’t have the time to do the research myself; but that doesn’t mean that, having heard it alleged to be true and alleged to be false, I’m willing to believe either side absent someone else handing me their research on a website. :)

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  62. Barry — here’s where you stooped to racial epithets.

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  63. Barry Smith,

    It’s inappropriate here to use the n word and it doesn’t help that you are calling people fascists, too. So clean up your act and, while you’re at it, tone down “vent[ing] your spleen” for the benefit of the “silent audience.” If you can’t, your comments will go into moderation.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  64. Dear Jack Pompus,
    Using a racial slur or epithet against someone and exposing racially prejudiced thinking are not the same. Any sensible obesrver will see that.

    Barry Smith (c74ba9)

  65. Using a racial slur or epithet against someone and exposing racially prejudiced thinking are not the same. Any sensible obesrver will see that.

    Translation: “It’s OK when I say it. Especially when I’m putting the word into someone else’s mouth.”

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  66. Right. And you of course are the great Nostra-dumbass that KNOWS that someone is thinking “N-WORD” so that you can congratulate yourself for bravely exposing them. Where do such brave men such as yourself come from?

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  67. So clean up your act and, while you’re at it, tone down “vent[ing] your spleen” for the benefit of the “silent audience.” If you can’t, your comments will go into moderation.

    No need for moderation. I was thinking of leaving you Sickos anyway. Censor out the undesirable and enjoy the cosy comfort of intellectual vaccum.

    Barry Smith (c74ba9)

  68. Barry Smith, while I agree that using a racial slur and exposing racial prejudice are not the same thing, I also think there’s a value to keeping the dialogue polite; and imputing racism to someone on thin evidence fails to do that.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  69. Bad thinking?

    Hypocritical statements?

    From Barry?

    I’m so shocked, you could knock me over with the substance in a Barack Obama press release.

    CW Desiato (614aa7)

  70. I wish we had dozens of Aphraels commenting here.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  71. Well, yeah, Barry, but you weren’t “exposing” anything — you were making unsubstantiated, spurious accusations, and that’s really not a good excuse for throwing around racial epithets.

    I disagree with DRJ, btw, that it’s necessarily inappropriate here to use such words, and think that they can be properly used to make a valid point, but a: you didn’t do that, and b: like you, I don’t get to set the rules here, and really must abide by them, and not use words that are forbidden by the site owner.

    And if you don’t believe that, you’re full of fleem.

    [Joel makes a good point. I don’t think Patterico bans many words but if he does, I think the n word is on the list. Patterico and I have never talked about it so I may be wrong, in which case I defer to his decision. However, once Barry Smith used the n word along with with his other rhetoric, I decided he had passed the tipping point and issued a warning. I stand by that until Patterico rules otherwise. — DRJ]

    Joel Rosenberg (5ec843)

  72. It’s amazing how many of the self-important trolls who come on here and profess their intellectual superiority have such an astonishing lack of skill in simple tasks such as punctuation, spelling, and grammar. They repeat lame taking points ad nauseam, presume that they are better educated, name call with abandon up to and including terms such as “fascist”, and then when they get owned they do the “I never wanted to play anyway” pose. It’s astonishing how self-assured and immature the people are who are on that side of the political divide.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  73. I am scared of you potential fascists. I really am.
    One more reason to never never vote the Neo-cons back to power again.

    Comment by Barry Smith

    You are the one voting for the budding fascists. Think about the threats to prosecute groups for producing anti-Obama ads. Threats to sue TV stations for running them. The little girls singing Obama songs like little Jugend robots, complete with Hollywood producer and cameras. The “Youth Corps” that Obama intends to require of all American youth if elected.

    These people are following the script of Jonah Goldberg’s book so closely you wonder if they read it.

    How about the “Action Wire” robots calling radio stations interviewing book authors and trying to shut down the phone lines ? How about the DNS attacks on anti-Obama web sites during the primaries ?

    I expect them to break out the brown shirts before the inauguration. And this is not just angry rhetoric like yours. I think this is what these people have in mind.

    They are so sure they know what we need. Do some reading about the 1920s, why don’t you ?

    Mike K (d8deba)

  74. Aphrael…
    Rose is a troll who just popped up with a discredited line of attack.
    If she, and perhaps you, had been following the discussion on this matter for lo these many days, she, and you, would realize that it was not a credible line of attack.
    If you need cites, I would just ask you to go back and review all of the discussion here on the email problem.
    BTW, it’s good to have you here for whatever time you can spare for the rest of us.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  75. And he still has no response to my question.

    I’m shocked.

    jharp, is that you?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  76. It never takes too long for their true colors to come out.

    JD (5f0e11)

  77. Scott, it is all projection.
    The Left has so many delusions/fantasies/phobias/psychosiis, that they could enrich the psycho-babble industry all by themselves if they would submit to proper treatment.
    Of course, some cynics would say that that would be the blind attempting to cure the blind.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  78. The fact is the poor child in this case screwed up his own life by committing these acts. Nobody held a frigging gun to his head. Hed did it of his own free will, and bragged obout it.

    He deserves what he gets.

    The hardest lessons are the best learned

    Dr. K (f196bc)

  79. On a personal level, I just find “left” people, or at least the ones who need to be “political” all the time, very unpleasant to be around. I work with a guy and every f’n situation that comes up its “Republicans this…George Bush that…” And calmly disagreeing with anything, if you even care to engage, is met with “WHAT?!!! WHAT ARE YOU, STUPID??!!” and then an eye roll and just general body language of “My god you’re so dumb!” even if it’s just an opinion. My neighbor in ultra-tolerant progressive Austin has a McCain sign on his lawn and he just smiles and shrugs his shoulders and says, “Oh yeah. People yell at us. We’ve been called fascists.” And then he just laughs pleasantly. In Philadelphia it was the same way, “vote Democrat or die, ASSHOLE!” Maybe people who have lived in predominantly Republican places have experienced it the other way, but I have found that people who are SO in your face about their progressive views have always been utterly intolerant, sanctimonious assholes.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  80. I updated the post regarding possible problems with the indictment.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  81. Truly tiresome: the same liberals who inveighed against “jackboot” George Bush with kneejerk eagerness when Obama’s passport files were “breached” (stirring breathless stories in the major media though it had nothing to do with Bush or republicans) ignore or wave off this bit of ugly and determined invasion of Sarah Palin’s privacy by an obvious partisan.

    The same “liberals” who rush to the defense of terrorists in Belgium who get their phones tapped have nothing to say about Sarah Palin’s private emails ransacked and plastered over the internet.

    Can you imagine if Obama’s private emails had been invaded by an Oral Roberts student and publicized on Michelle Malkin’s website? (nevermind the unlikelihood of such a student doing it or of Malkin ever publishing it if they did).

    You think you’re fooling people?

    How can you hope to run a civilization with this kind of convulsive hypocrisy?

    rrpjr (e98cdc)

  82. “Can you imagine if Obama’s private emails had been invaded by an Oral Roberts student and publicized on Michelle Malkin’s website?”
    I would immediately find someone willing to offer me a dime for every time the word “fascism” was used to describe the situation, and retire a bazillionaire within two days.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  83. A person of trollish nature writes:

    “…I was thinking of leaving you Sickos anyway…”

    You know what? Maybe this person isn’t a troll.

    I don’t like Michael Moore films either.

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  84. Using a racial slur or epithet against someone and exposing racially prejudiced thinking are not the same. Any sensible obesrver will see that.

    Indeed.

    We see what Barack Obama and the people that Barack Obama endorses and supports are doing.

    Emil Jones, running around calling people who work with white politicians “Uncle Toms”.

    Kwame Kilpatrick, arguing that a black female police detective should be “ashamed” to be working on the criminal case investigating him and for even riding around in a car with a white man.

    Charlie Rangel, screaming that his being investigated for tax fraud was “racist”.

    There is a reason that Barack Obama channeled millions of dollars in funding to Bill Ayers and his educational philosophies, and here it is:

    Convinced that all whites were born tainted with the original sin of “skin privilege,” the fighting brigade of the New Left internalized racialist thinking as hatred of their own whiteness. “All white babies are pigs,” declared one Weatherman. On one occasion the feminist poet Robin Morgan was breast-feeding her son at the offices of the radical journal Rat. A Weatherwoman saw this and told her, “You have no right to have that pig male baby.” “How can you say that?” Morgan asked. “What should I do?” “Put it in the garbage,” the Weatherwoman answered.

    To Barry Smith and Barack Obama, that is normal thinking. That’s what Barack Obama cheered and clapped for over the course of twenty years at Trinity Church, where Jeremiah Wright spewed it Sunday after Sunday.

    Barry Smith and Barack Obama are the racists here.

    North Dallas Thirty (efe6ff)

  85. I’ve had my hotmail and yahoo account both hacked. Somehow the police wouldnt go after who did it though. I’m curious why the huge manhunt for this guy?

    My god, what this kid did was so basic it isnt funny. There are probably 10’s of thousands of guys that have hacked into their ex-gf’s email accounts this way. If you are really going to claim felony on this, prepare to have your taxes increase. Cause your going to have build alot more jails.

    Also, someone actually tried to do the whole “continual relationship with a terrorist” line? If you even look into that briefly you know that statement is false. You’ve been watching Fox News to much. Though the other guy does have ties to Richard Byers, whom btw was in the KKK. Somehow this is okay though right?

    Jason (8a16ee)

  86. Dear DRJ:

    The term “fascist” is often used by people when they actually mean “SOB.” It’s not a descriptive word, nor can the spewers of it usually define “fascism” or “fascist” properly.

    Heck, most of them (and I teach undergraduates, so I know that this is true) don’t even know what the acronym “Nazi” stood for in 1930s Germany.

    To coin a phrase from my friends on the Progressive side of things, the term “fascist” as currently used most of them time is…well, “hate speech.”

    Eric Blair (2708f4)

  87. Normally the n-bomb would not bother me, if it was used in the context of exposing racism. In this case, it was used to make a spurious charge of racism. Couple that with its actions towards L.N., and its utter and complete lack of character is obvious.

    JD (5f0e11)

  88. Ah yes, the old smear-by-distraction technique.

    So, Jason, do you agree with Barack Obama that people who preach that white babies are pigs and should be put in the garbage should receive millions of dollars in education funding to “improve” public schools?

    Do you agree with Obama that people who openly state they should have done more bombings and who insist that everyone they killed/maimed/attacked, even the children whose houses they firebombed, was “guilty” and deserved it, should be lauded for public service?

    North Dallas Thirty (efe6ff)

  89. “You’ve been watching Fox News to [sic] much.”

    I will refer to my own previous comment #72:

    “…have such an astonishing lack of skill in simple tasks such as punctuation, spelling, and grammar. They repeat lame taking points ad nauseam…”

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  90. The same “liberals” who rush to the defense of terrorists in Belgium who get their phones tapped have nothing to say about Sarah Palin’s private emails ransacked and plastered over the internet.

    To be fair, there is an enormous difference between having your phones tapped by, or at the behest of, the government, and having your phones tapped by a random criminal.

    This is a difference that I would expect conservatives – who are very often acutely aware of the difference between the government acting to achieve some positive aim and private individuals acting to achieve the same aim – to be cognizant of.

    I think what the guy who broke into Gov. Palin’s email account did was wrong; I also think that, were the state doing it, it would be far more dangerous and threatening to both privacy and liberty.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  91. I’ve had my hotmail and yahoo account both hacked. Somehow the police wouldnt go after who did it though. I’m curious why the huge manhunt for this guy?

    Crimes intended to influence elections tend to get a bit more attention. Watergate was a rather simple burglary, but…

    My god, what this kid did was so basic it isnt funny. There are probably 10’s of thousands of guys that have hacked into their ex-gf’s email accounts this way.

    “Hey, all these stalkers do it, too, so what’s so wrong?”

    That many people commit a crime does not make it not a crime. Capiche?

    Also, someone actually tried to do the whole “continual relationship with a terrorist” line? If you even look into that briefly you know that statement is false.

    Weird. I guess if you look into it “briefly” you’re satisfied with the explanations Obama’s given. However, the folks who have looked into it in more depth have found all sorts of signs that the campaign’s line is just wrong.

    Nice try at spinning a whole bunch of logical fallacies together, though. Tu quoque, bandwagon(?)… anyone spot any others?

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  92. Kerr had the same difficulty analysing the piggyback nature of elements of the Drew indictment.

    SarahW (a6e80b)

  93. DRJ,

    With regards to the defect and the theory of the case, I think posting the password, thus enabling (encouraging?) others to also break the “unauthorizied access” portion, probably is the thinking behind it. The comments to Prof. Kerr’s post are pretty helpful.

    But I also think it’s a case of aiming for a felony versus a misdemeanor, and as much as I dislike this sort of behavior on the part of “hackers,” I don’t think that step is justified.

    I work in computer securty and have done some work in privacy also. IANAL!

    aphrael,

    I’ve been taking an interest in this case since it hit the news. I did look at the emails that were posted. The only thing (aside from the purely personal) that I saw were some campaign-related emails, or emails to government workers that were clearly personal. In both cases the argument that they SHOULD be done on personal email are pretty strong.

    Dan S (c77713)

  94. “Fascism” was an epithet during the time that the Spanish Civil War was on:
    Progressives (Marxists) supported the Liberal Govt in Spain that was being supplied to some extent by the USSR;
    while, at the same time, the Fascists (Franco) were being supported by Nazi Germany.

    In August, 1939, this all changed. With the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact aligning the Soviet Union with Nazi Germany in dividing Eastern Europe into spheres of influence (hegemony), the use of the “fascist” epithet was consigned to the dust-bin of history by Progressives, until the embarrassing reality of Operation Barbarossa in the Summer of ’41; now, “fascist” again became the most cruel of accusations that could be levied.

    Embarrassing facts to those with no original thoughts except those which they received from the ComIntern.

    AOracle (db2f44)

  95. Hmm, I thought the facist party was formed in Italy. First. I know the whole concept was fairly popular at the time on both sides of the Atlantic.

    Yeah, 1922 for Italy.

    Dan S (c77713)

  96. Jason – Thank you for such an eloquent contribution. We are all better people for having read that.

    JD (f7900a)

  97. Dan S: while it’s true that the Fascist party was an Italian phenomenon, the word can be used as an adjective to describe authoritarian systems in other states, including Germany, Spain, and Portugal (and, in modern times, arguably Myanmar).

    That’s independent of its use as a general-purpose epithet.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  98. JD: Jason does have a point, though. The “hacking” involved was not particularly technically difficult; this does not excuse the crime, but it does indicate a problem with the technology. I wouldn’t want my house protected by a flimsy lock, and neither do I want my online data protected thus.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  99. I seem to recall that it is horrible beyond belief to wiretap potential terrorists.

    Just make sure that you would think that this is “no big deal” or “the fault of the victim for not using more secure e-mail accounts” if it was Senator Obama’s private e-mail system that had been hacked.

    Comment by Eric Blair — 10/8/2008 @ 10:01 am

    More clearly, it is horrible to wiretap American citizens and American persons without judicial oversight.

    How do feel about Baracky now being able to wiretap and monitor whomever he wants whenever he wants?

    Just because he says so.

    jharp (2282bb)

  100. aphrael – I have not noticed an exception to the applicable laws that says it is not a crime it is was easy to do. And I know you were not arguing that. Jason, however, was.

    JD (f7900a)

  101. JD, I took Jason to be arguing that, as a matter of policy, things which are so easy to do should not be crimes, because anything which is so easy to do will be done by large numbers of people, and the cost of punishing them all will outweigh the benefit in making the act criminal.

    As a general rule, I think that’s an accurate description of the way the system works in practice; crimes which are truly commonplace end up being selectively prosecuted at best, due to resource allocation, and that sort of selective prosecution (IMO) encourages contempt for the law.

    That said, I would disagree with his assertion that in this case there is a link between the ease of doing the act and the frequency with which people do the act. It’s easy, but I don’t think it’s commonly done (unlike, say, the use of the internet to break copyright law).

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  102. Though the other guy does have ties to Richard Byers, whom btw was in the KKK. Somehow this is okay though right?

    Comment by Jason — 10/8/2008 @ 11:33 am

    I dunno. Why not ask Obama, what with him working with Sen Byrd…

    Jason does have a point, though. The “hacking” involved was not particularly technically difficult; this does not excuse the crime, but it does indicate a problem with the technology. I wouldn’t want my house protected by a flimsy lock, and neither do I want my online data protected thus.

    No, it doesn’t excuse the crime, but that tends to ignore the “haha, she used yahoo, she deserved it” comments when it happened…

    Just because you use a flimsy lock, does that mean you deserve to have your house broken into?

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  103. No. For that matter, when I lived in Santa Cruz, I often didn’t lock the door at all, and I didn’t deserve to have my house broken into.

    And at the same time … we need better electronic locks.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  104. I fully agree aphrael… Just because the crime was EASY doesn’t mean you should prosecute the guy.

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  105. “It seems to me there may be multiple crimes that could be piggy-backed: If the first crime was the unauthorized intrusion into Palin’s email account, perhaps it was done in furtherance of the second crime of revealing the results of that intrusion on the internet.”

    The concern is that the indictment does not put the defendant on notice about what second crime(s) is/are being alleged. Due process requires notice of all crimes alleged so that the defendant may fairly defend himself against those charges.

    Federal Dog (1404a2)

  106. Frankly, were I this young man, I’d probably NOT point out that they should be listing additional charges for which I could get more jail time…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  107. I agree with Professor Kerr. The indictment is defective. It must charge conduct in violation of the law which enhances the offense, with additional elements not part of the predicate offense.

    nk (f2ee58)

  108. NK, if that is the case, can the prosecution simply amend the indictment and proceed?

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  109. Aphrael:

    I took Jason to be arguing that, as a matter of policy, things which are so easy to do should not be crimes, because anything which is so easy to do will be done by large numbers of people, and the cost of punishing them all will outweigh the benefit in making the act criminal.

    I don’t think that’s always true. For instance, it’s very easy to take someone’s mail out of their mailbox (for those of us who still have mailboxes in front of our homes), but that doesn’t detract from the government’s willingness to punish violations. The government has an interest in protecting an orderly mail system and commerce in general, so it typically will prosecute even minor violations.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  110. JD- brilliant response.

    FWIW- A number of years ago I was the object of attempted identity theft. Knowing the Philly police dept had other things higher on their priority list I contacted the local branch of the Secret Service. I was told that yes, they were the right people to call, but at the time they were instructed not to spend resources on investigations where less than $25,000 was involved. So, while prosecution was not likely for ID theft resulting in the loss of “only” $20,000, it still was a crime.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  111. MD – Which one are you referring to?

    I had my bank account accessed via identity theft, and had over $7000 taken from my checking account. With the help of a friend who is a whiz with computers, we were able to trace back to the source, and find out who had done this. Many companies will not cooperate without a subpoena, and you cannot get that without the police or Feds taking an active and aggressive role in pursuing it.

    I know for a fact that mine was not really investigated, and never prosecuted.

    JD (f7900a)

  112. MD – I can only imagine the reaction you would get from the Philly police with a complaint of ID theft. Unless of course the perpetrators were the infamous “Bonnie and Clyde.”

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  113. rrpjr wrote:

    You think you’re fooling people?

    How can you hope to run a civilization with this kind of convulsive hypocrisy?

    First of all, to people like them, it’s not hypocrisy. It’s similar to the moronic notion that only whites can be racists because minorities don’t have the power to act on it.

    Suppressing speech, violent threats, rioting, terrorism, etc. is not wrong when THEY do it because the people they target “have it coming.” Politicians, police officers, research scientists, soldiers, their girlfriends, their families — they’re all part of the machine to be dismantled by any means necessary.

    As to how such people would run a civilization? That’s easier to answer: With an iron fist.

    L.N. Smithee (e1f2bf)

  114. JD- #96 Since you don’t have a copyright I may flatter you with imitation of such.

    The attempted ID theft involved trying to set up credit accounts with several merchants. One gave me the false address used (which presumably would be where ordered goods were sent). When I was told nothing would be done I did case the place myself. It was a smallish apartment building but no apt # had been listed. I let it alone from there.

    Yes, Jack. I didn’t begrudge what the Philly police would do with it (nothing). My son has been one of them about 4 months now. Like I wrote, they have other things to do.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  115. MD – It is my professed goal to try to be nicer to the mendoucheous asshat trolls.

    JD (f7900a)

  116. Actually Mr. Smith, the term “forgotten men” was termed by FDR’s opponent in 1932. It was taken from Sumner. You should read a book sometime, you might be enlightened. You might just remain the same pseudo-elitist jerk that you are now, though, too.

    Carolynp (a200f6)

  117. aphrael #107,

    In Illinois, no. An information or a complaint may be amended on its face by the prosecution but the indictment must go back to the grand jury. I don’t know for sure that’s the case in the federal system but I expect that it is under the Fifth Amendment.

    nk (f2ee58)

  118. Scott Jacobs wrote: Just because you use a flimsy lock, does that mean you deserve to have your house broken into?

    When I was in my single digits, there was a public service announcement reminding car owners to remember to take their keys out of their cars! There was a scene in which some teen boys were ogling a new car, and one of them notices the keys were in the ignition. They go on a high-speed joyride that ends with a crash. The announcer’s voice is still in my head: “REMEMBER…LOCK YOUR CAR. TAKE YOUR KEYS.”

    Whoa, gramps! You mean there was once a time when people didn’t steal stuff just because it wasn’t anchored down?

    In this age of Viper, LoJack and The Club, it’s hard to imagine there was a time when people had to remind drivers not to leave their keys in their cars!

    L.N. Smithee (b048eb)

  119. Nice to see that not all election-related activity is treated as above the law.

    Ryan (50f97d)

  120. MD – Godspeed to your son and I hope that he is safe. My nephew’s best friend is in the district in Port Richmond where the Shop Rite robbers murdered the Sergeant. My sister and her kids are in Wissinoming in the lower northeast where it is becoming worse every day.

    Jack Klompus (cf3660)

  121. I like to think back to times and places where keys could be left in the ignition, with the windows down; and doors could be left unlocked, or even open on hot summer nights, and no one would think of invading another’s privacy, or stealing their property.

    But, that was in a star-system far, far away, where courts protected the concept of private property, and punished harshly those that stole and trespassed.

    But, Hey! We’re much more civilized now, right?

    AOracle (db2f44)

  122. re rrpjr and Smithee above at #112.

    Doesn’t Ayers et. al. want to bring chaos and the dissolution of current society in order to bless us with Utopia?

    In other words, no, you can’t run a civilization with this kind of hypocrisy and intellectual dishonesty. But that’s ok when the aim is to replace it with another civilization of intellectual dishonesty where hypocrisy, by definition, doesn’t exist. There is the right way, explained and enforced by the all benevolent central government, and the wrong way, which will not be tolerated.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  123. When I was in my single digits, there was a public service announcement reminding car owners to remember to take their keys out of their cars

    They had cars back then? :)

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  124. NK,

    Would you mind elaborating on the defect in the indictment and save me the trouble of reading the Volokh thread? I understand the requirement to provide notice of a specific criminal law violation and that you can’t enhance without separate offenses. But applying it to a hypothetical case, do you think if a person accessed without authorization two email accounts belonging to the same person, they could be charged with one offense, two offenses, or one offense with an enhancement?

    DRJ (c953ab)

  125. Scott,

    My Dad still talks about the cars he owned/drove that didn’t have keys.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  126. DRJ, I was trying to poke fun. Way to ruin it. :)

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  127. I knew you were kidding. I was joining in. Not only do I remember those PSAs about car keys in (I think) the 1960s but we also had PSAs about wearing seat belts in the 1970s.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  128. My Dad still talks about the cars he owned/drove that didn’t have keys.

    A possibly apocraphyl story….

    In the late 40’s/early 50’s at a major car show in Europe, a journalist asked someone on the stand at a high-end, prestigeous marque (let’s say Maserati) why his cars did not have locks on the doors and were so expensive, yet the lowly econo-box being shown by (let us say) FIAT not only had locks on the doors, but an ignition key, which the Maserati lacked?
    The rep responded that the Maserati was a luxury item, to be owned by someone who had many cars, and if it was stolen, though that might be an inconvenience, it would not be as devastating as would the loss of the FIAT to someone who had saved and scrimped for years to be able to afford a car to replace his bicycle/motorcycle.

    AOracle (db2f44)

  129. I left my keys in the ignition of my Expedition, once. I got it back about 5 days later.

    JD (f7900a)

  130. do you think if a person accessed without authorization two email accounts belonging to the same person, they could be charged with one offense, two offenses, or one offense with an enhancement?

    Yes. Depending on the statute and the prosecutor’s discretion, it could be: 1) One offense as a course of conduct or criminal enterprise; 2) two offenses as two separate transactions; or 3) one or both offenses enhanced because of multiple violations.

    Outside First Amendment and death penalty situations, the Fifth Amendment requirements for what constitutes a crime are pretty much “the will of the stronger”.

    nk (f2ee58)

  131. I remember when a “gas war” was when different service stations (that was what gas stations were called when they served the customer) tried to undercut each other on the price of gas. Down to 25 cents a gallon.

    I remember my dad explaining that to me in the car one day as I was confused by the term, I didn’t see any soldiers around the gas stations. (That was around the time I had dreams of gorillas with guns climbing over the fence to attack our house. Funny what listening to news reports about “guerrilla fighting” can do.)

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  132. Thanks, NK, as always. What do you see as the defect here?

    DRJ (c953ab)

  133. I left my keys in the ignition of my Expedition, once. I got it back about 5 days later.

    Comment by JD — 10/8/2008 @ 2:47 pm

    From the police, you mean, or just parked back in your driveway with a thank-you note and an empty tank-o-gas?

    no one you know (1ebbb1)

  134. This guy is as dumb as they come and his lawyer is really going to bend him. Why might you ask cause if he loses and he will taking this to trial will get him a obstruction of justice charge when they sentence him. Thank God for jackhole libs that think they are above the law. David just let everyone know you are connected LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

    DonfromManassas (70e760)

  135. no one you know – About 45 minutes away, with an empty tank of gas, sans golf clubs and DVD player. Fortunately, no damages.

    JD (f7900a)

  136. My guess is this defendant has no prior record and will plead it out. If it were a state charge, I would bet on long-term deferred adjudication with a fine and community service, but I don’t know what the options are under federal criminal law. I can’t imagine any way this would result in incarceration.

    As for consequences, when I was in college, this would prevent a student from admission into an elite law school and from being eligible for licensing by a state Bar. It may also have been true for other elite professional schools and licensing organizations, like the AMA. I don’t know if it would matter today, but I don’t think it would be helpful.

    DRJ (c953ab)

  137. JD – I had my bank account accessed via identity theft, and had over $7000 taken from my checking account. With the help of a friend who is a whiz with computers, we were able to trace back to the source, and find out who had done this.

    What did you do with the bodies?

    MD – Identity theft is not only protected by the government, but is also encouraged by the government. It is not a mistake that you were defrauded out of 20,000.00 when the trigger for Secret Service involvement is 25k. Think Doodad Pro and the phony Obama contributions. Hundreds of contributions in small amounts – but it all adds up.

    The credit bureaus, upon receiving financial data that lists a different address, will not report it to the current addressee, but instead will start a new file, not only separate from the original, but unsearchable from the original. In short, the credit bureaus are assisting those who steal identities, all while preventing the honest from detecting the problem before it reaches crisis proportions. They are, in my estimation, criminal enterprises.

    MD, LN, rrpjr RE:- How can you hope to run a civilization with this kind of convulsive hypocrisy?

    They can’t (see history of 20th century), nor do they ‘hope’ to run anything, other than a scam to increase their power and finances. Their focus is completely on legitimizing theft.

    Aphrael – You bring up comparisons between the hack of Palin’s email (supposedly being a ‘private’ matter) and the actions of the state.

    Unfortunately for you, the attempted downplaying of this episode as an ‘electronic B&E’ reveals the reason that it gained so much attention.

    Not only was this an act of political sabotage, but the timing of it was admitted by the hacker as an attempt to influence the outcome of an election. Furthermore, the fact that this individual is the son of an elected official in the opposing party elevates this far above a simple breaking of an ‘electronic lock’ to access an ex-girlfriend’s myspace page.

    There is no evidence that the father, a Democrat, had anything to do with the breach.

    However,

    your earlier effort to beg ignorance of whether or not Palin utilized the account for government purposes leads you down a tricky path. According to your standards, we might have reason to believe that the father used his son to avoid possible blowback in a coordinated attempt to turn the election in favor of his own party. This could easily be as much of an insult to democracy as were the Watergate break-ins. Given corresponding evidence of fraud by ACORN and Obama’s past election wins by elimination of legitimate voters for his opponents, it is within reason to assume that this is a treasonous effort to stage a coup de’tat by the Obama campaign, which, if successful, will have absolutely no legitimacy to govern.

    Exaggeration anyone? Aphrael – do you like how speculation rolls? If you do, are you quite sure that you and your friends on the left can keep the ball from being taken by someone with far bigger plans?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  138. Apogee – A gentleman never tells.

    JD (f7900a)

  139. I met a person when I retrained into the computer field (Air Force) 10 years ago whose story went like this: He was dropped from the AF Academy for an honors violation involving computers. The AF retains the right to recall former cadets up to about 2 years after their discharge to serve a hitch as an enlisted troop. They recalled him from a high paying computer job in Chicago and, yes you guessed it he was retrained into the computer career field!

    voiceofreason2 (28aae6)

  140. Apogee: I think if you read what I’ve written, you’ll see that I’ve held back from speculation.

    I’ve heard it alleged that private email was used for professional use. I know *from personal experience* that it’s very easy to do that; I will admit to using at least two different private accounts for professional email. It seems entirely plausible to me that Gov. Palin, or anyone else, might do that, entirely innocently.

    But I’ve never said that I believe her to have done it; I’ve said that I’ve heard it alleged, and don’t know if it’s true, and that if it’s true, certain consequences should result.

    Given that experience tells me it’s a very easy line to cross, I’m not inclined to believe denials I hear on the internet without, at the very least, citations; given that I want to extend the benefit of the doubt to everyone until proven that I shouldn’t, I’m not inclined to believe allegations I hear on the internet without proof. But I can’t deny that I’ve heard them, and I’m perfectly willing to hold views about what should happen in the event of hypotheticals. (I am, after all, in law school. :))

    If you want to say that you’ve heard it alleged that the break-in to Gov. Palin’s email account was a result of a coordinated effort by the Obama campaign to stage a coup d’etat, and that you don’t know if it’s true or not, and that if it’s true, certain consequences should follow, then that’s fine, but I would submit to you:

    (a) my uncertainty is based at least in part upon the fact that I have personal experience doing exactly what it is alleged that Gov. Palin has done, and I suspect you have no equivalent experience surrounding your uncertainty;
    (b) the scenario you are putting forward requires a conspiracy involving coordination between multiple actors, and in general such conspiracies are hard to keep secret;
    (c) the allegations I’ve heard have gotten much more publicity than the allegations you would be discussing (although it’s important to note that this speaks more to the legitimacy of my claim to have heard them than it does to their veracity; widespread dissemination of a claim does not make it true, nor does lack of dissemination make it false).

    All of which is a long-winded way of saying that I don’t think my uncertainty about whether Gov. Palin used a private email account to conduct public business is comparable to your hypothetical uncertainty about whether the Obama campaign was behind the hacking.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  141. aphrael – The hacker himself said he found nothing incriminating. The whole idea that there may have been emails about official business seems to be a distraction from the issues that matter most to Americans. I agree that it is without foundation to say that this was in any way some kind of conspiracy, but at the same time, sidetracking onto whether or not there were emails related to official business seems without foundation as well. If that is so important of an issue, someone on the Left should just file a lawsuit and get a subpoena for her records.

    JD (f7900a)

  142. The whole idea that there may have been emails about official business seems to be a distraction from the issues that matter most to Americans

    *grin* Well, to be fair, something like 70% of what gets talked about relating to the election is a distraction from the issues that matter most to Americans. :)

    sidetracking onto whether or not there were emails related to official business seems without foundation as well

    fair enough. I’ve made my point, and am happy to drop it.

    If that is so important of an issue, someone on the Left should just file a lawsuit and get a subpoena for her records.

    I think that only a citizen of Alaska would have standing to bring that suit.

    In addition, I suspect he would have to have some sort of probable cause for believing there is an issue, and that might be hard to demonstrate.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  143. I think that only a citizen of Alaska would have standing to bring that suit.

    Surely one of the Dems that is planning an October surprise for Tasergate would be willing to do so.

    JD (f7900a)

  144. aphrael – I wasn’t pushing that conspiracy, but merely following a hypothetical to its endpoint of absurdity. Your mention of the ‘allegation’ regarding Palin is merely distraction, as JD rightly points out –

    1 – The hacker himself found nothing incriminating – yet you fail to recognize that portion of the story, which should be the most accurate, as this person intended to damage Palin.

    2 – It is at the level of smear due to the lack of interest in gaining actual evidence.

    Democrats don’t really want to know. They just want to draw attention away from the fact that a Democratic Party supporter, who is the son of an elected Democrat, tried to influence the outcome of an election by illegally obtaining information regarding the opposing party.

    That stinks so much like Watergate that I’m surprised Woodward isn’t on the case. Oh that’s right, he’s a Democrat.

    Since there is so much concern regarding private emails, why is there no corresponding demand to see the Obama and Biden private emails?

    You are a courteous and thoughtful commenter, and although I disagree with you regarding this and many other issues, I appreciate the level of discourse to which your comments adhere.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  145. Apogee, as I’ve said before, my ability to devote time to running down evidence is limited. This is, in the end, my fault; on some level I’m failing in my duty as a citizen in relying on what I read online and in the paper and not doing the research.

    I think the situation can be distinguished from Watergate in that Watergate involved actions undertaken, in essence, by the government; using the government to help you break the law for political purposes is a crime of an entirely different dimension than simply breaking the law for political purposes.

    As for Sen. Biden and Sen. Obama’s email … this is an interesting question. Some off the cuff thoughts:

    (a) it’s not clear that legislators act in an official capacity in the way that executives do, in that legislators can only bind the state via a collective action, but a Governor can bind the state through executive order. that *might* justify a lower level of transparency for legislators than for executives.
    (b) that said, my instinct is to say that all public business should be conducted in public, and if legislators are conducting public business via private email, the act of doing so should render the email public information.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  146. DRJ #132,

    I guess you need to read the indictment linked by
    Kerr. The part that’s totally ridiculous is “he did aid abet the same”. He aided and abetted his own conduct for crying out loud?

    nk (f2ee58)

  147. my instinct is to say that all public business should be conducted in public

    We have found a point of agreement.

    I have asked before, looked online, and have not been able to find out whether a transcript or recording is allowed only in open debate and not committee meetings, or if it exists everywhere.

    The answer may affect your opinion on the ‘binding’ power of Legislators versus Governors.

    Providing our elected officials with secrecy when they are engaging in negotiations that are decidedly non-secret is, IMO, one very large reason that we can’t seem to get a handle on spending and oversight. Making secret deals in meetings and playing to the microphones later allows a disconnect between political actions and consequences.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  148. Political “dirty tricks”, whether done by the party in-power, or the party out-of-power, are still what they are:
    Dirty Tricks.
    At best they are despicable, at worst illegal.
    Both the activities of the “Plumbers”, and the activity of Kernell, are illegal.
    Just as the “Plumbers” faced legal consequences, so should Mr. Kernell.

    However, in today’s political world, Mr. Kernell’s activities are but a side-show.
    The serious activity is that which is being looked at by that Grand Jury, and USA, in NV.
    Voter Fraud is a cancer that will eat away the legitimacy of electoral politics.
    If the average voter believes that his vote won’t count (and he is very close to that now in certain jurisdictions),
    or doesn’t matter, then the stuffers have won, and we will have ceased being a Democratic Republic.
    At that point, everyone will believe that they have to act only for themselves,
    and any community identity will be lost.
    At that point, we can strike from all material, the words E Pluribus Unum

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  149. aphrael – one other thing – I could be wrong on this, but apparently the ‘plumbers unit’ that broke into the DNC office in the Watergate hotel was made up of ex-government and non-government individuals, paid for by diverting election funds from the RNC.

    It was a case of an elected official (Nixon) employing extra-governmental individuals to change the course of an election. That is why I made the comparison. (Which would only make sense if the father and the Obama campaign were directing the operation) I don’t think any official office of the government other than Nixon’s executive branch was involved.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  150. Another Drew – Agreed. Voter fraud de-legitimizes government itself, along with government institutions. It is incredibly dangerous and short sighted.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  151. Another Drew, great post and very well said. Might I add when it comes to that the 2nd Ammendment will kick in as the reset button it was intended too. Im sure you realize that from time to time the tree of liberty needs to be replenished with the blood of Patriots.

    DonfromManassas (70e760)

  152. …and scoundrals.

    Must have diversity, you know.

    Another Drew (db2f44)

  153. Providing our elected officials with secrecy when they are engaging in negotiations that are decidedly non-secret is, IMO, one very large reason that we can’t seem to get a handle on spending and oversight. Making secret deals in meetings and playing to the microphones later allows a disconnect between political actions and consequences.

    I don’t think that doing everything in public would necessarily solve this problem; it still takes time and energy to pay attention to everything, and while there will be watchdog agencies we can delegate that to, there will be multiple ones making competing claims.

    That said, given that we are a democratic republic, I have a fundamental philosophical objection: in a government of the people, everything the government does should be accessible to the people, with the exception of those things which absolutely must be done in secret … and those should be limited in number and tightly controlled.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  154. If the average voter believes that his vote won’t count (and he is very close to that now in certain jurisdictions),

    In which jurisdictions do you think the average voter believes his vote won’t count?

    For what it’s worth, this is why I think that electronic voting machines are a disaster. As a computer programmer, I know that hacking them, while not trivial, would not be particularly difficult; and because of that, I think they cannot be trusted and should be abandoned at the earliest possible opportunity.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  155. In which jurisdictions do you think the average voter believes his vote won’t count?/blockquote>

    Chicago, for one.

    Rob Crawford (6c262f)

  156. Comment by aphrael — 10/9/2008 @ 9:23 am

    Well, I for one here in Los Angeles County have concerns as to whether or not my absentee ballot will be counted, since the Registrar of Voters has stated that absentee ballots that have not been counted, will not be counted when the margin in close races is more than the number of ballots uncounted.

    How’s that for “Let Every Vote Count!”

    Also, the fact that State and Congressional electoral districts within CA have been gerrymandered to protect incumbents (since the 2000 re-apportionment, only one district, State Assembly/Senate or Congressional) has changed hands from one party to the other. This in a State with 80 Assembly members, 40 State Senators, and 55 Congressional seats.

    It has been famously noted that in CA the politicians choose the voters, not voters choosing the politicians.

    Another Drew (930ac9)


Powered by WordPress.

Page loaded in: 0.6796 secs.